Overview of Opening a Bank Account in Vietnam
The nation's banking sector greatly supports Vietnam's financial stability and economic growth. The State Bank of Vietnam (SBV), which acts as the country's central Bank and monetary authority, controls and oversees it. The banking industry in Vietnam comprises various financial institutions, including cooperative banks, joint-stock banks, foreign banks, and state-owned banks. The State Bank of Vietnam supervises and controls these institutions to guarantee adherence to banking rules and regulations.
State-owned banks are regarded as the backbone of the banking system and hold a sizable portion of the market, including Vietcombank, BIDV, and Agribank. They have a vast network of branches nationwide and provide various financial services. Several international banks have entered the Vietnamese market recently, expanding the sector's knowledge and competitiveness. These financial institutions, such as HSBC, Standard Chartered, and Citibank, provide services for those who require international banking as well as for multinational organizations, overseas investors, and individuals.
Vietnam is one of Asia's most significant financial hubs, which provides several benefits to international business owners setting up shop there. A significant number of foreign nationals relocate here for work or any other reasons, in addition to the annual flood of visitors. In the middle of 2020, Vietnam's commercial banking industry included two joint venture commercial banks, nine wholly-owned foreign banks, 31 joint-stock commercial banks, and four state-owned banks. Agribank, BIDV, Vietinbank, and Vietcombank, four state-owned commercial banks, held a significant majority share of around 50% in total market deposits at the end of 2019.
Factors to Consider when Choosing a Bank
It's crucial to consider several things while choosing a bank in Vietnam to make the ideal decision for your needs.
- Stability and Reputation:Look into the Bank's market standing and reputation. To safeguard the security of your money, search for banks with a proven track record. Consider elements including the Bank's financial performance, credit ratings, and client testimonials.
- Services and Products: Consider the breadth of the Bank's services and offerings. Look for features like mobile applications, ATM accessibility, internet banking, and customer support. If you require services like international money transfers or foreign currency services, see if the Bank provides these.
- Fees and charges of the Bank:Examine the Bank's fees and charges, such as account maintenance fees, transaction costs, and ATM withdrawal fees. Find the Bank that offers competitive rates and open fee policies by comparing the fees of various financial institutions. Pay attention to any restrictions or additional fees that could be necessary.
- Accessibility and Branch Network: Take into account the Bank's branch network and accessibility. To guarantee easy access to your accounts, find out where and when the Bank's branches and ATMs are located. Choose a bank with a large branch network if you travel frequently or live in several places.
- Customer service: Evaluate the Bank's level of customer service. Look for banks that provide knowledgeable and accommodating customer service across a variety of channels, including phone, email, and live chat. Any problems or questions you may have may often be resolved with the help of quick and effective customer care.
- Technology and innovation: Take into account the Bank's digital capabilities and technical breakthroughs. In order to secure your financial information, look for banks that embrace innovation and offer user-friendly online banking platforms, mobile applications with useful features, and cutting-edge security measures.
- Language help: If Vietnamese is not your first language, look at banks that provide English language help. As a result, there are a few chances of miscommunication while interacting with bank employees or using financial services.
- Consider any extra services or perks the Bank may be providing:These might be benefits like price breaks at affiliated retailers, preferred interest rates on loans or deposits, or specialized services for certain clientele (such as foreign nationals or small enterprises).
Banking Law in Vietnam
Vietnam updated its banking laws in 2016, making a number of adjustments to make it simpler for foreigners to register bank accounts. Another amendment that took effect in 2019 allowed foreigners and business owners to open accounts from locations outside of Vietnam. Therefore, it can be said that Vietnam has established itself as one of Asia's most friendly nations for tourists and businesspeople, providing favourable circumstances and facilities to promote foreign investment.
Criteria to Choose a Bank
- Choose a reputable bank with a reputation for swift transaction processing.
- When creating a payment account, choose a bank that provides alluring benefits, such as reduced issuance costs, free card maintenance, and no-cost money transfers.
- When opening a savings account, look for a bank that provides a competitive interest rate.
- Pick a bank that offers online card opening services to save the trouble of physically visiting a branch.
Types of Bank Accounts
- Personal Bank Account
Accounts can be opened by natural people who are employed and residing in Vietnam.
- Corporate Bank Account
Corporate bank accounts are required for all businesses doing business in Vietnam.
- Merchant Account
Merchant accounts are required in Vietnam for e-commerce companies.
- Foreign Currency Account
For those from other nations who want to send money home, opening a foreign currency bank account in Vietnam offers an easy way to transfer money to a foreign bank, making it a popular choice. With only a few small fees, this strategy provides a very cost-effective method for sending money to Vietnam from outside.
- Vietnamese Currency account
The advantage of having this kind of bank account is convenience. By having the local currency available, it facilitates simple transactions in restaurants, chain stores, supermarkets, and other institutions. In addition to this, there are no fees associated with using an ATM to withdraw Vietnamese Dong (VND). According to international banking standards, opening a bank account in Vietnam denominated in local currency often entails making a deposit and maintaining a balance.
List of Required Documents
- Application form for opening the account
- Proof of Identity
- Valid Passport with at least three to six months to the expiry date, stamped with a Vietnamese visa
- Employment contract visa in case of non-residents, if working
- Information of the company incorporation, in case the bank account will be used for the business
- The minimum opening amount for the deposit
Procedure of Opening a Bank Account in Vietnam
- Pick a trustworthy bank: To identify the Vietnam bank that best meets your company's needs, do extensive research and comparison. Take into account elements like reputation, costs, and services provided.
- Find out what kind of bank account it is: Choose the sort of bank account that best suits your needs based on your company's operations. Various financial products, including stocks, bonds, and mutual funds, are available from Vietnam banks. However, they might come with extra professional costs.
- Prepare the required paperwork: Foreign business owners might have to submit additional paperwork and abide by laws like anti-money laundering (AML) and know-your-customer (KYC) rules. Make sure you have the necessary documents before you establish an account. Remember that non-residents may be subject to more scrutiny, charges, and surveillance.
- Choose between remote and in-person account opening: Some banks might provide remote account opening, but others could call for a physical visit.
- Fund your account: You will normally be requested to make an initial deposit to fill your bank account after it has been created. The needed sum could change depending on the kind of account. The Bank will activate your account, enabling you to utilize it for your business operations when you have finished the required procedures and funded the account.