Minister of Transport Nguyen Van The said the draft decree was revised and supplemented for the second time in the past three months after it received ideas from Government officials and aviation businesses. It is expected to enhance aviation services including aviation transport businesses, airports and aviation service supply.

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Under the draft, the investors need to meet conditions such as having aircraft, operational organization, capital, a business plan and product development strategies to obtain an air transport licence.

A regulation previously requiring the businesses’ plan to suit the aviation transport development plan has been removed from the new draft.

In addition, the minimum capital needed to establish and maintain the businesses’ operation was adjusted to ease the burden on investors. As proposed by the transport ministry, an airline operating up to 10 aircraft will need a minimum of VND 300 billion (USD 12.83 million), from 11 to 30 aircraft will need VND 600 billion, and 30 aircraft and more will need VND 700 billion.

These amounts have been cut by more than half compared with the previous draft decision.

Another new point in the second draft decree is that the ministry proposed to raise ownership for foreign investors in the field of aviation transport.

Foreign-invested enterprises must satisfy the following conditions: foreign ownership will not occupy more than 34 percent of charter capital; at least one Vietnamese individual or legal entity must hold the largest charter capital. In case the Vietnamese person has foreign owned capital that is the largest charter capital amount, the foreign capital contribution shall not exceed 49 percent of the Vietnamese person’s own.

“The limitation of the foreign investors’ contribution capital not exceeding 34 percent of charter capital was aimed to harmonize the attraction of foreign investment capital, but still ensure the rights and interests of domestic investors,” said The.

In the new draft decree, the ministry also kept the age of aircraft as stipulated in the Government Decree No.92/2016/ND-CP at 20 years of operation for passenger transport aircraft and 25 years for cargo aircraft.

According to The, the age of the airline fleet was a sensitive issue that needs to be carefully assessed. The ministry had received comments from Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Pham Binh Minh, Minister of Public Security To Lam and opinions of experts. It would not adjust the regulation on the age of airline fleet immediately, but continue to study and evaluate more carefully and propose revisions at an appropriate time.

Up to September this year, the number of civil aircraft registered with Vietnamese nationality was 175 aircraft, up 18 units over the same period last year, of which Vietnam Airlines has 89 aircraft and Vietjet has 56.

Source: VNA