THE OFFICE OF GOVERNMENT
SOCIALIST REPUBLIC OF VIET NAM
Hanoi, May 31, 1994
FOR GUIDING THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE GOVERNMENT RESOLUTION No. 38/CP ON INITIAL REFORM OF ADMINISTRATIVE PROCEDURES IN THE SOLUTION OF CITIZEN AND ORGANIZATION AFFAIRS
On the 4th of May 1994, the Government issued Resolution No. 38/CP on initial reform of administrative procedures in the solution of citizen and organization affairs. This Circular provides guidance in some organizational matters for the deployment and implementation of the above Resolution.
I. NECESSITY, OBJECTIVE AND REQUIREMENT OF THE RESOLUTION
Administrative procedures are the basis and necessary conditions for the State agency to solve matters of citizens and organizations according to the law, assuring the legitimate rights and interests of people and agency having affairs to be settled. At present, administrative procedures issued by State agencies at different echelons are very discursive, unclear, lack uniformity and publicity and can change at will at any moment. Such administrative procedures bother the people and reduce their confidence in the Stage agency, create obstacles to relations and cooperation between our people and foreigners, generate arrogance, harassment, corruption and other negative acts. The Government Resolution No 38/CP sees the initial reform of administrative procedures as a pressing demand of the State and people, as one of the central tasks of ministries, branches and localities from now to the end of 1994, as the beginning of the national administrative reform.
The objective and requirement of the initial reform of administrative procedures is to effect a basic change in the relationship of procedures in the settlement of citizen and organization affairs. More concretely, there should be discovery and elimination of those uneven, overlapping, rambling and complicated administrative measures which have caused hindrances to the reception and settlement of affairs among State agencies themselves, between the State agencies and citizens and organizations. There must be procedures which help solve matters in a simple, clear, uniform, law-abiding and open way, both providing convenience to citizens and organizations who need settlement of their affairs and having the effect to curb bureaucracy, harassment and corruption of the State officials, the same time assuring the responsibility of State management, maintenance of discipline and law.
II. THINGS TO BE DONE FOR IMPLEMENTATION OF THE RESOLUTION
1. To publicize and popularize the Resolution:
The ministries, branches at the central level, local People’s Committees have the responsibility of, in all appropriate forms, organizing the publication and popularization of the Government Resolution, making all agencies, organizations and citizens aware of the necessity, objective, requirement and content of the Resolution, for everyone to act according to the Resolution.
The publication and popularization of the Resolution should be done permanently and continuously, in all practical forms and measures, with a view to encouraging and stimulating each agency, organization and citizen to actively participate in the reform of administrative procedures, avoiding both costly ostentation and formalistic rituals without caring for effect.
At the Office of the Government Cabinet, ministries, ministerial level agencies, Government agencies, province and city people’s committees and other agencies from the central echelon to the grass-roots, letter boxes must be made available for organizations and citizens to express their opinions concerning the implementation of the Government Resolution No 38/CP.
The mass media should have special sections to permanently and continuously report on the reforms of administrative procedures, create conditions for organizations and citizens to carry out and supervise the implementation of the Resolution through appropriate forms like: putting forward recommendations for the competent agency to consider, amend, complete or abolish inappropriate procedures and fees; praising those agencies, organizations and individuals that performs well the reform of administrative procedures, resolve well matters of citizens and organizations; report on and criticize those State agencies and officials who are sluggish or conservative, who are sluggish or conservative, who are reluctant to reform the administrative procedures which cause harassment to the people, who behave arrogantly, who demand and receive bribes, hassle people, and criticizing those acts of misusing the fight against intricated procedures to commit wrongdoings.
2. Organizing the revision of administrative procedures:
The ministers, head of ministerial level agencies, Government agencies, Chairmen of the People Committee of provinces and cities directly under the Central Government and heads of other State agencies from the central level to the grassroots, within the scope of their competence, are responsible to revise all administrative procedures and fees in force.
A- REVISION OF PROCEDURES IN THE SETTLEMENT OF MATTERS AMONG STATE AGENCIES:
The revision and the discovery of regulations which are unlawful or too intricated and need to be abolished must be based on the working regime provided by the Law on Organization of People’s Council and People’s Committee and other juridical documents issued by the Government. Those problems which require new regulations or those administrative procedures which though still appropriate are scattered in too many documents should now be integrated into one documents for an easier implementation. The key points for revision, apart from what has been mentioned in Article 1 of Resolution No. 38/CP, should also focus on the following procedures:
1. To prepare and issue decisions: it is essential to avoid delays or lack of precision, lack of coordination, lack of comprehensiveness, lack of unity, contradictions, overlapping or not conforming to the competence or reality.
2. To decide on matters according to competence and responsibility: not to arbitrarily decide on matters which lie beyond one’s competence, nor shirk one’s responsibility and competence by referring to the upper echelon for opinion concerning matters belonging to one’s own responsibility and competence. The upper echelon shall not decide on matters pertaining to the responsibility and competence of the lower echelon.
3. The process of settling matters within the responsibility and authority of the agency concerned: we should avoid situations in which an agency, organization or citizen which needs a solution to its problems has to knock at many doors, to go through many departments of the same agency before the affair is solved, or, because of dispersion of organizations no one is the chief responsible person so that the lower echelon can dodge control and solve it in its own way.
4. Meeting for discussion and solution of matters: We must avoid too many meetings to handle an affair which finally is decided in an unclear, undefinitive and even contradictory way.
B. REVISION OF ADMINISTRATIVE PROCEDURES IN THE SETTLEMENT OF CITIZEN AND ORGANIZATION AFFAIRS:
1. State administrative agencies from the central level to grassroot level (communes, wards etc.) within their own competence should organize the complete revision of administrative procedures being applied for the settlement of citizen and organization matters. In the immediate future, the revision of procedures should focus on problems related to the life and daily affairs of citizens and organizations such as:
– Procedures on issuance of licenses on export, import and transit of goods, of exit-entry permits and various procedures on customs and control at airports, seaports, border-posts, on investment and issuance of investment licenses, on appraisal of investment projects, joint ventures with foreign countries, renting houses, land and residing places for foreigners.
– Procedures on issuance of business licenses, applications for building, transformation, repair, renting, sale and purchase, transfer of houses, for land use, transfer and inheritance of land use right.
– Procedures on notary public attestations, issuance of residence permits, school application, medical consultation and treatment at hospitals, registration of ownership and issuance of permits for utilization of motor vehicles; registration of property dealings, capital loan, business inspection, forest control, market control, traffic order and means of goods transportation.
– Besides procedures defined in written documents, special attention should be paid to those procedures which though not recorded into written documents are applied in practice.
2. Together with the revision of procedures on settlement of citizen and organization matters, there should be revision of the following matters:
– The correct execution of the laws of the State. Immediate abolition of fees levied by the non-competent echelons (mentioned in Decision No. 276/QD on 28th of July 1992).
– The organization of receiving people, receiving and solving people’s affairs: at the places for receiving the people, there should be a board publicizing the procedures for the solution of each kind of affairs, necessary documents to be provided and time-limit for their solution. Any affair that requires a fee should be publicly notified. If the affair is related to several departments of the agency, a more rational line should be established to spare the solicitor from going through several doors and several departments of the agency before the affair could be solved. Wherever solicitors come in great numbers, the agency should increase its personnel to handle the volume and should not let people wait long. Those assigned with the task of receiving people should dress correctly, wear their name cards with photos and positions. At the desk, there should be a board with name and position of the person assigned to deal with people’s affairs. The person receiving and dealing with people’s affairs has the responsibility of accepting people’s affairs has the responsibility of accepting people’s papers for their solution according to the defined authority and time. If time is needed for consideration, there must be an appointment sheet for the date of solution. If the person receiving the solicitors is not qualified in behavior or level, another person should be immediately appointed as substitute.
3. All administrative and fee procedures during the revision must be based on the laws of the State and regulations to this effect mentioned in Article 3 of Resolution No. 38/CP and Decision No. 276/QD for analysis, assessment and classification:
– Kind of procedure to be abolished: administrative and fee procedures issued by non competent echelons, or issued by competent echelons but inconsistent with the law or no longer appropriate to reality, for causing inconvenience to organizations and citizens.
– Kind of procedures to be amended: procedures issued according to competence and conforming to managerial function but with confused and complicate contents or the fees are too high (such as abolishing a number of “doors” or a number of papers, reducing the fee level…).
– Kind of procedures to be legalized: procedures previously issued by the non-competent echelons (compared with the stipulations in Article 3 of Resolution No. 39/CP) but now considered necessary. They should be reported to the competent echelon for their legalization.
– Kind of procedures to be unified into one document: necessary procedures issued by the right authority but are scattered in several documents. They now need to be unified into one document for easier comprehension and uniform implementation.
– Kind of procedures to be kept intact: Procedures issued by competent authorities, their contents still conform to reality, their wording is simple and clear, easily understood by everybody and easily executed in a unified way.
The examination to decide with paper procedures and which fees are to be abolished, amended or kept intact, should be done carefully and democratically, combining the opinions of the agency, the responsible cadre and the organization or citizen affected by those procedures. The exchange of opinions can be made in one of these forms: direct exchange, contribution by mail, meeting or publication on the press of some procedures expected to be abolished, amended or replaced for discussion by the agency which organizes the revision or by a competent echelon which sets administrative procedures so that an appropriate way can be found.
4. Competence in settlement of classified administrative procedures: The ministers, heads of ministerial-level agencies, Government agencies with State management function are responsible of settling administrative procedures on problems pertaining to their branches and domains. Those administrative procedures related to several ministries and branches should be discussed and agreed upon between the directly responsible ministry and branch and related ministries and branches for their issuance by inter-ministerial decision. If the minister, head of branch management agency at the central level accredit it to the Chairman of the People’s Committee in the province or city directly under the Central Government to define some procedures, the latter shall consider and decide.
The Prime Minister examines and decides on the settlement of administrative procedures issued by the Government and the Prime Minister; examines and proposes to the National Assembly Standing Committee the settlement of administrative procedures issued by the National Assembly and the National Assembly Standing Committee.
In this drive of revision, the settlement of administrative procedures according to the above classification or the defining of some procedures accredited to the Chairmen of the People’s Committees in the provinces or cities directly under the Central Government, by ministries, ministerial level agencies, Government agencies, should be reported to the Government cabinet and concurrently sent to the Ministry of Justice to consult them before implementation.
Agencies having no competence of issuing administrative procedures (according to regulations in Article 3 of Resolution No. 38/CP) may propose the upper echelon to settle those administrative procedures which though being implemented by themselves but have been seen as irrational and need to be complemented, amended or abolished. If such procedures now need to be abolished, these agencies can do it themselves and report to the upper echelon without having to wait for the upper echelon to abolish them.
5. After the competent echelons have decided or approved the method of settlement, the readjusted procedures and fees must be publicized. During the revision of the administrative procedures, agencies and cadres having the responsibility of settling affairs of organizations and citizens should continue to assure normal conditions of their work and no one is allowed to act contrary to the procedure pending the publication of new regulations by the competent agency.
III. ORGANIZATION OF IMPLEMENTATION
A – STEPS TO BE TAKEN:
1. Thirty days of receiving this Circular, the ministries, ministerial level agencies, Government agencies, the Chairmen of the People’s Committees of provinces and cities directly under the Central Government should complete and send their reports to the Minister of Justice, the Minister – Chairman of the Government Commission on Organization and Personnel, the State General Inspector and the Minister of Finance on their plan for implementation of Resolution No. 38/CP with the following main contents:
– The way of organizing the publication and popularization of Government Resolution No. 38/CP and their result.
– Plan for the implementation of Resolution No. 39/CP in the ministry, branch and locality.
– List of questions where procedures have been instituted with priority given to those to be examined and revised in the last months of 1994.
Reports and implementation plans by the People’s Committees of provinces and cities directly under the Central Government should be sent to the Government cabinet and related branch managing ministry five days earlier than schedule for these agencies to synthetize them.
2. Until before the 30th of September, 1994, ministries, ministerial level agencies, Government agencies, People’s Committees of provinces and cities directly under the Central Government send to the Prime Minister summarized reports on implementation of Resolution No. 38/CP and expectation of matters to be done until the end of 1994.
Until before the 20th of December 1994, these agencies shall have sent to the Prime Minister summarized reports on the implementation of Resolution No. 38/CP in 1994 and projected questions to be carried on in 1995.
These reports, apart from mentioning the result of revision and settlement of administrative procedures, should put forward recommendations on organization reshuffle and working method resulting from the procedures revision.
B. ORGANIZATION OF DIRECTION AND IMPLEMENTATION:
1. The responsibility of organizing the direction and implementation of Resolution No. 38/CP belongs to the ministers, heads of ministerial level agencies, Government agencies, Chairmen of the People’s Committees of provinces and cities directly under the Central Government.
The Minister-Director of the Office of the Government, the Minister of Justice, the Minister-Chairman of the Government Commission on Organization and Personnel, the Minister of Finance and the State General Inspector, besides their responsibility of organizing the direction and implementation of the Resolution on problems under their own jurisdiction like the other ministries, have the task of helping the Prime Minister to monitor and stipulate the ministers, branches and local people’s committees in the implementation of Resolution No. 38/CP.
2. Setting up two inter-ministerial working teams presided over by the Office of the Government to help the Government step up and supervise the implementation of this Resolution, and together with other agencies to directly take in charge of examinating and improving some important and pressing administrative procedures in some ministries and in two cities, Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh city.
The members of these teams shall include cadres of department or equivalent level, appointed and assigned by the Minister-Director of the Office of the Government, the Minister of Interior, the Minister of Justice, the Minister of Finance, the State General Inspector and the Minister-Chairman of the Government Commission on Organization and Personnel.
In ministries, ministerial level agencies, Government agencies and the People’s Committees of provinces and cities directly under the Central Government, the People’s Committee of different echelons, apart from appointing a deputy head to take charge of this work should organize a section (with a composition similar to that mentioned above) to help the agency head to permanently monitor, stipulate and supervise the implementation of this Resolution.
The above are instructions on things to be done for the implementation of the Government Resolution No 38/CP. In the process of implementation, if any problem arises and needs further instruction, let the agencies report them to the Office of the Government for additional examination and settlement.
THE MINISTER-DIRECTOR OF THE OFFICE OF THE GOVERNMENT
Le Xuan Trinh