Vietnam Lawmakers Prescribe Tender Process for International Football Betting Operators

Home » Vietnam Lawmakers Prescribe Tender Process for International Football Betting Operators

International football betting operators looking to enter the legal Vietnamese wagering market will have to take part in a tender process called by the Government, according to the recently issued governmental decree. The process to select investors in the country’s betting business will reportedly have to follow the Bidding Law anticipating the liability of selected football betting operators to funnel five percent of their gaming revenues to the state.

Mandatory Tender Process:

As reported by the Hanoi Times (HT), the pressure to allow the presence of international football betting operators in Vietnam has been rising over recent years. As online betting platforms of multiple international operators are accessible for a wide betting population, the annual handle of the illegal football wagering market in Vietnam is estimated at tens of billions of USD.

The Government of Vietnam has realized the need to make necessary steps to bring international football bets under control and channel illicit profits into legal cash flows. For this reason, the state has issued Decree 23/2024 to indicate that all betting operators will be subject to a tender process rather than simply granted licenses to operate.

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According to HT, the same requirement applies for investment projects and wagering activities related to horse and dog racing. The source indicates that the Decree prescribes tender submissions whenever two or more investors express interest in such projects or activities.

Revising Subject Legislation:

The latest governmental move is reportedly a revision of the Decree 06 issued in 2017 to regulate international football betting. As reported by HT, Decree 06 already requested a bidding process but allowed pilot operators to run betting facilities in the country. The regulation is now revised and Decree 23/2024 doesn’t allow any pilot operators but requires all wagering businesses to bid for specific operations, as the source reports.

The legislation reportedly follows a recent lottery operator’s announcement that it would avail of the regulation to launch international football wagering by 2025. The expected bidding process measure may control such announcements. As reported, it reflects an original decree’s revision proposal filed by the Ministry of Finance in 2021. According to the source, the proposal allowed bets purchased online and those placed on European national football games, but also included certain restrictions.

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Minimum Capital and Cash Requirements:

In 2021, the Ministry of Finance also proposed a $40.5 million minimum capital investment requirement for investors in wagering activities. Also, the authority set the foreign investor stake in such activities at a maximum of 50 percent. Finally, the proposed revision anticipated that such companies shall funnel a minimum of five percent of betting revenue in cash before taxes.

Targeting Illegal Betting Circles:

As HT reports, Decree 23/2024 is yet to be issued to regulate the respective legal requirements. The measure reportedly targets illegal football betting circles and websites handling tens of billions of USD on international football matches a year. The appropriate regulatory framework would attract investors from abroad and contribute to the state through tax revenues. The bidding process may be the stepping stone for both the operators and the Government to control football betting and benefit from the move.

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