by GIA NGUYEN - TRUONG DANG 01/07/2023, 11:38

Electronic Transactions Law (amended): Removing difficulties for digital transformation

With 468 of 477 National Assembly delegates voting in favor, the amended Electronic Transactions Law is intended to assist remove bottlenecks and establish favorable circumstances for digital transformation.

As a result, the amended Electronic Transactions Law will take effect on July 1, 2024. The updated legislation has eight chapters and 53 articles that govern the conduct of electronic transactions. Notably, the drafting agency has changed and introduced a number of new noteworthy policies in this amendment, including:

For starters, as a law, it immediately gives many existing laws in the digital realm legal effect. Specifically, any legislation that previously did not govern electronic transactions shall be enforced in accordance with the terms of the Electronic Transactions legislation. Electronic transactions are considered equal and can be used to replace conventional transactions. Due to the lack of clear restrictions, authorities and organizations cannot contest the legality of electronic transactions.

Second, it optimizes and reduces processing time in electronic transactions, making them more convenient and capable of replacing traditional transactions. This critical legal foundation tackles the complexity, duration, and costliness of electronic transactions, which have been carried out concurrently with older techniques, impeding the digital transformation process. It establishes rules for the smooth transfer of paper to electronic formats, reducing impediments. The development of trusted services helps to establish trust in electronic transactions.

The amended Electronic Transactions Law is highly regarded for its notable modifications and additions (Illustration: ITN)

For the first time, electronic certificates are included in the law to represent all types of licenses, diplomas, certificates, certifications, and so on, assisting in overcoming the most significant barrier to comprehensive online public services, which is the result of administrative procedures being resolved electronically.

Third, it eliminates challenges and roadblocks in the implementation of electronic contracts. This legislative foundation gives Ministers of separate sectors the authority to create laws on electronic contracts within their respective industry. The Ministry of Labor, Invalids, and Social Affairs, for example, can issue or submit permitted papers governing electronic labor contracts, while the Ministry of Culture, Sports, and tourist, among others, can issue or submit allowed documents governing electronic tourist contracts.

Fourth, it formalizes the function of national digital platforms, such as the National Data Integration and Sharing Platform (NDXP) and the Architecture Framework, as major coordinating tools of the Ministry of Information and Communications. We had no legal foundation for our efforts previously.

Fifth, it institutionalizes the hiring of experts from the state budget (career fund) by state agencies to provide database consulting and perform professional and technical activities related to the management, operation, and information security assurance of state agencies' electronic transaction information systems. This first overcomes issues with using the career fund to maintain and operate information infrastructure.

Sixth, it creates data exchange, online monitoring, inspection, and auditing rules. It establishes a significant legal foundation for handling state data using big data rather than traditional approaches. It focuses on data exchange and monitoring of information infrastructure servicing electronic transactions in particular.

Many experts believe that the recently updated Electronic Transactions Law, with the aforementioned revisions and additions, would assist overcome bottlenecks and provide ideal conditions for the digital transformation area.

Delegate Nguyen Phuong Tuan, Deputy Chairman of the National Assembly's Committee on Science, Technology, and the Environment, evaluates the amended law and believes that the recently passed amended Electronic Transactions Law has achieved the desired objectives and aspirations of businesses in the field of digital transformation. And we can see that the Electronic Transactions Law will serve as the foundation for the digital transformation industry.

Many experts agree that the updated Electronic Transactions Law will assist improve the legal foundation for online transactions and broaden the breadth of electronic transactions' applicability to all elements of social life.

Many opinions suggest that the passed amended law will create a crucial legal framework for digital transformation activities (Illustration: ITN)

The modified legislation also addressed the present law's inadequacies, limit  ations, and weaknesses by broadening the area of regulation and extending its applicability to all elements of social life. It is concerned with assuring the legal value of electronic signatures, electronic authentication, electronic contracts in particular, and the legal value of electronic transactions in general.

Mr. Vu The Binh, Vice Chairman and General Secretary of the Vietnam Internet Association (VIA), indicated in a news interview that the enactment of this bill strengthens the legal framework governing Vietnam's digital transformation efforts.