Since the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MOIT) introduced its roadmap on simplification of business and investment requirements last September, the Vietnamese government has introduced several measures and changes to regulations to improve the work processes for businesses in various sectors.
For the Food Sector, the Vietnamese government has introduced Decree No 15/2018/ND-CP, which is an amendment of Decree No.38/2012/ND-CP on the implementation of a number of articles of the Law on Food Safety. According to the new decree, food products, food additives that are already on the permitted list etc will only required to 'self-declare' the safety and quality of the food, and country of origin. Prior to introduction of this new declare, companies must submit product dossier to the authority for evaluation and approval. The process usually take an average of 1-2 months (there are even cases of 6 months approval lead time), due to constant back-fro amendment or supplementation of the product dossier at the request of the evaluation officers.
The new decree will cut down the pre-marketing approval lead time and improve the product speed to market. Such process is currently not applicable to food supplements and food with claims. We hope that the 'self-declaration' process will be extended to these products, especially those food supplements, with well established ingredients and claims in very near future.