Decision 123/QD-TTg: Approving The Scheme To Develop A Contingent Of Lawyers For International Economic Integration From 2010 To 2020

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DECISION
Decision No. 123/QD-TTg of January 18, 2010, approving the Scheme to develop a contingent of lawyers for international economic integration from 2010 to 2020
THE PRIME MINISTER
Pursuant to the 2001 Law on Organization of the Government;
Pursuant to the 2006 Law on Lawyers;
Pursuant to the Government’s Resolution No. 16/2007/NQ-CP of February 27, 2007, promulgating the Government’s action program to implement the Resolution of the Xth Party Central Committee’s 4th plenum on major guidelines and policies for rapid and sustainable economic development when Vietnam becomes a member of the World Trade Organization;
At the proposal of the Minister of Justice,
DECIDES:
Article 1. To approve the Scheme to develop a contingent of lawyers for international economic integration from 2010 to 2020, with the following principal contents:
I. OBJECTIVES
1. General objectives
To build a contingent of lawyers who are professionally qualified, knowledgeable about international laws and trade practices, proficient in English, conversant with international law-practicing skills, and capable of counseling matters related to international economic integration to organizations, individuals and enterprises in the society, including government agencies, People’s Committees of a number of provinces and centrally run cities and state economic groups.
To build law-practicing organizations specialized in foreign-involved investment, business and trade, which can compete with foreign law-practicing organizations.
2. Specific targets
2.1. To build and develop a sufficient number of lawyers specialized in trade and investment to meet the needs for counseling and litigation on matters related to international economic integration of organizations, individuals and enterprises in the society, including government agencies and state economic groups.
The number of lawyers intensively trained in trade and investment will reach 400 by 2015 and 1,000 by 2020. The number of internationally qualified lawyers will reach 150, including those trained under the Scheme and those trained on their own and attracted under the Scheme’s policies.
By 2015, each state economic group will have at least two or three legal experts trained under this Scheme.
2.2. To develop law-practicing organizations by forming law firms specialized in foreign-involved investment, business and trade. To strive for at least 30 law-practicing organizations specialized in foreign-involved investment, business and trade by 2020.
2.3. To concentrate on building the capacity to domestically train lawyers under international and regional standard training programs; to strive to put into operation foreign-cooperated lawyer training centers for international economic integration in 2011. By 2020, these centers will be capable of training lawyers up to international standards for some regional countries.
II. TASKS AND SOLUTIONS
1. To develop a contingent of lawyers for international economic integration
1.1. To build the capacity to domestically train lawyers for international economic integration
1.1.1. To prepare conditions for domestically training lawyers for international economic integration
a) To study and elaborate a scheme to form on a trial basis lawyer training centers for international economic integration in cooperation with job-training institutions and socio-professional organizations of such countries as the UK, the US, France and Australia (below referred to as joint training centers) at lawyer training institutions of the Ministry of Justice; to guide the formation of joint training centers of the Vietnam Lawyers Federation and law-practicing organizations capable of training lawyers for international economic integration.
Implementation time: 2010
b) To formulate a program to train lawyers for international economic integration on the basis of standard training programs of advanced countries and meeting Vietnam’s requirements and conditions, which shall be uniformly applied to joint training centers.
Implementation time: 2010
c) To develop and finalize a set of training manuals and materials for uniform use in lawyer training for international economic integration.
Implementation time:
- To develop the set of training manuals and materials: 2010;
- To finalize the set of training manuals and materials: 2011-2015.
d) To build a framework contingent of trainers to train lawyers for international economic integration. These trainers will be Vietnamese and foreign lawyers who are experienced in and known for professional practice in investment, business and trade; and domestic and foreign legal experts who are experienced in and known for law training and research. English training will be conducted mainly by foreign trainers.
Implementation time: 2010
1.1.2. To form joint training centers on a trial basis and to train lawyers for international economic integration:
a) To form joint training centers:
The Ministry of Justice shall permit the formation of joint training centers after reaching agreement with the Ministry of Education and Training.
Implementation time:
- 2010-2011: To form a joint training center at the Academy of Justice;
- 2015-2020: To form a joint training center at the Vietnam Lawyers Federation;
- To encourage capable law-practicing organizations to form joint training centers during the implementation time of the Scheme.
b) To organize training at joint training centers
- Trainees: Lawyers of law-practicing organizations and enterprises, trainee lawyers, lecturers of law and lawyer training institutions, excellent law students, masters and doctors of law, and other persons meeting the selection criteria if they are recruited by a law-practicing organization specialized in foreign-involved investment, business or trade or by a state economic group.
 - Selection criteria:
+ Being a Vietnamese citizen residing in Vietnam;
+ Having firm political viewpoints;
+ Possessing moral qualities;
+ English proficiency equivalent to IELTS rating of 5.0 points;
+ Experienced in counseling enterprises, agencies and organizations, capable of and potential for career development.
- Training form: formal training in the following phases:
Phase 1: Training at joint training centers under the lawyer training program for international economic integration specified at Point 1.1.1b, Section II, Article 1 of this Decision (below referred to as intensive training program).
Phase 2: Professional practice at Vietnamese law-practicing organizations specialized in investment, business or trade or foreign law-practicing organizations in Vietnam or overseas.
- Training contents: International law practicing skills, especially those in trade dispute settlement and legal counseling in international trade transactions; legal knowledge on international business and commerce; professional ethics of lawyers; work management skills; legal English.
- Completing a training course, trainees shall take an examination for evaluation of training results. A council for examination and evaluation of training results will consist of representatives of the joint training center, the Ministry of Justice, the Ministry of Education and Training and the Vietnam Lawyers Federation, and some capable and prestigious lawyers. Examination passers shall be granted certificates of lawyer training for international economic integration.
Implementation time: 2011-2020.
1.1.3. To work out policies to support the capacity building of joint training centers. These centers may be considered to receive tax incentives under law.
1.2. To select and send more lawyers abroad for spearhead training under the Scheme on training of legal experts and lawyers for international economic integration during 2008-2010, approved under the Prime Minister’s Decision No. 544)QD-TTg (below referred to as Scheme 544); to encourage lawyers to attend training on their own to meet international economic integration requirements
1.2.1. To increasingly and effectively send lawyers for training in countries with developed judicial and legal systems to form a contingent of key lawyers for Vietnam’s international economic integration under Scheme 544.
To revise Scheme 544 toward adjusting state funds for overseas training of lawyers and legal experts to meet practical requirements in order to send trainees to training institutions for appropriate periods of time, and concurrently support part of training expenses for lawyers trained under Scheme 544 and extend Scheme 544’s implementation time to 2015.
Implementation time: 2010.
1.2.2. To support all or part of training expenses for those who attend overseas training at their own expense and meet the criteria of lawyers for international economic integration under this Scheme. These lawyers will sign working contracts on a regular or case-by-case basis with some ministries, branches, local administrations or state economic groups.
Implementation time: 2010-2020.
1.3. To increase regular retraining in knowledge and law-practicing skills to meet international economic integration requirements
1.3.1. To elaborate plans to improve lawyers’ knowledge and professional skills in international trade. To diversify forms of lawyer training; to develop distance training for lawyers.
Implementation time: 2010.
1.3.2. To compile and distribute documents on international economic integration for lawyers and law-practicing organizations. To provide documents for agencies, organizations, units and localities which conduct regular training and retraining in law, professional operations, skills and ethics, and political theories for lawyers.
Implementation time: 2010-2015.
1.3.3. To organize training courses on legal and commercial English for lawyers and trainee lawyers.
Implementation time: 2010-2020.
1.3.4. To send lawyers to overseas training in professional skills and ethics under foreign legal cooperation programs.
Implementation time: 2010-2020.
1.4. To create source lawyers for international economic integration
1.4.1. To elaborate and implement policies to attract Vietnamese citizens possessing foreign law-practicing certificates to become Vietnamese lawyers, and overseas Vietnamese lawyers to participate in Vietnam’s international trade counseling and litigation.
Implementation time: 2010-2020.
1.4.2. To renew the bachelor-of-law training program towards approaching advanced training programs of countries in the region and world. To increase vocational orientation training time for final-year students of law, attaching importance to orientating law students towards practicing law on international trade.
Implementation time: 2010-2020.
1.4.3. To pilot transferable training of excellent law students to become lawyers meeting international economic integration requirements.
To select outstanding students for training them into talented bachelors of law and pilot training in English in combination with sending them to domestic and overseas law-practicing organizations specialized in trade and international trade for practice. After graduating universities, these students will be trained at lawyer training institutions.
The State adopts policies to support lawyer training for talented bachelors.
Implementation time: 2010-2020.
2. To build law-practicing organizations specialized in foreign-involved investment, business and trade and capable of competing with foreign law-practicing organizations
2.1. Annually, to review, evaluate and classify Vietnamese law-practicing organizations intending to specialize in foreign-involved investment, business and trade.
2.2. To elaborate plans and orientations to develop small- and medium-sized law-practicing organizations into large ones specialized in foreign-involved investment, business and trade.
Implementation time: 2010-2015.
2.3. To attract lawyers trained under the Scheme to work at law-practicing organizations specialized in international trade. To increasingly train and retrain lawyers for international economic integration at law-practicing organizations.
Implementation time: 2010-2020.
2.4. To propose and implement tax exemption and reduction policies for law-practicing organizations receiving trainee students of joint training centers under Point 1.1.2, Section II, Article 1 of this Decision.
Implementation time: 2010-2012.
2.5. To create conditions to develop Vietnamese law-practicing organizations by assigning these organizations to carry out big transactions or projects of the Government, and mobilize foreign lawyers’ participation when necessary.
Implementation time: 2010-2020.
2.6. To work out policies to support and encourage Vietnamese law-practicing organizations to provide cross-border services.
Implementation time: 2010-2015.
3. To employ lawyers for international economic integration
3.1. To review current laws on lawyers and law practicing, especially those on creation of a legal environment for lawyers for international economic integration to develop. To study, propose amendments to, and promulgate legal documents, policies and mechanisms to promote the formation of a contingent of lawyers for international economic integration, especially policies to promote lawyers’ legal counseling, paying proper attention to counseling on international economic integration. To elaborate and implement policies to expand international cooperation in lawyer training and retraining for international economic integration.
Implementation time: 2010-2015.
3.2. To work out mechanisms to employ lawyers trained or attracted under this Scheme for the jobs below:
- Counseling or participating in litigation on matters related to international economic integration for the Government, organizations, individuals and enterprises; working under contracts on a regular or case-by-case basis for state economic groups, large enterprises, some government agencies and provincial-level People’s Committees;
- Counseling and settling international disputes when so requested by the Government;
- Participating in the elaboration of legal documents on trade and international economic integration;
- Teaching and training at law training institutions, especially training of lawyers for international economic integration; participating in programs to improve knowledge and skills for lawyers and enterprises.
3.3. To form clubs of lawyers and legal experts for international economic integration with members being those trained under Scheme 544 and this Scheme, and lawyers having practiced in international trade, in order to attract and effectively employ lawyers trained or receiving training on their own under the Scheme.
Implementation time: 2010-2011.
III. ORGANIZATION OF IMPLEMENTATION
1. Assignment of responsibilities
1.1. The Ministry of Justice shall assume the prime responsibility for, and coordinate with ministries, branches and the Vietnam Lawyers Federation in, implementing the Scheme and the solutions specified at Points 1.1.1, 1.1.2, 1.2.1, 1.4.1, 1.4.3, 2.1, 2.2, 2.6, 3.1, 3.2 and 3.3, Section II, Article 1 of this Decision.
It shall assume the prime responsibility for, and coordinate with the Vietnam Lawyers Federation and concerned ministries and branches in, adopting mechanisms to enable lawyers, law-practicing organizations and enterprises to participate in the implementation of this Scheme.
1.2. The Vietnam Lawyers Federation shall assume the prime responsibility for, and coordinate with the Ministry of Justice in, implementing the solutions specified at Points 1.3.1, 1.3.2, 1.3.3, 1.3.4 and 2.3, Section II, Article 1 of this Decision.
It shall implement the solutions related to lawyer training under Point 1.1.2, Section II, Article 1 of this Decision when fully meeting requirements on lawyer training for international economic integration.
The Vietnam Lawyers Federation shall coordinate with the Ministry of Justice in implementing the Scheme.
1.3. The Ministry of Education and Training shall assume the prime responsibility for, and coordinate with the Ministry of Justice and the Vietnam Lawyers Federation in, implementing the solutions specified at Point 1.4.2, Section II, Article 1 of this Decision.
1.4. The Ministry of Finance shall ensure annual state budget allocations for the Scheme implementation under the State Budget Law; and assume the prime responsibility for, and coordinate with the Ministry of Justice in, implementing the solutions specified at Points 1.1.3, 1.2.2 and 2.4, Section II, Article 1 of this Decision.
It shall coordinate with the Ministry of Justice and the Ministry of Industry and Trade in implementing the solutions specified at Points 3.1 and 3.3, Section II of this Decision.
1.5. The Ministry of Industry and Trade shall coordinate with the Ministry of Justice in implementing the solutions specified at Point 3.1, Section II, Article 1 of this Decision.
1.6. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs shall coordinate with the Ministry of Justice in implementing the solutions specified at Point 1.4.1, Section II, Article 1 of this Decision.
1.7. The Ministry of Planning and Investment shall assume the prime responsibility for, and coordinate with the Ministry of Justice in, implementing the solutions specified at Point 2.5, Section II, Article 1 of this Decision.
1.8. Concerned ministries and branches shall coordinate with the Ministry of Justice in studying and proposing solutions to promoting lawyers’ legal counseling on transactions related to sectors under their management according to Point 3.1, Section II of this Decision, and coordinate with the Ministry of Justice in implementing the Scheme.
1.9. Provincial-level People’s Committees shall elaborate plans to implement the Scheme in their localities; formulate and implement plans to attract and effectively employ qualified lawyers for international economic integration under Point 3.2, Section II, Article 1 of this Decision; and direct and guide local agencies and organizations in increasingly using lawyers’ services in their transactions, especially in state- and ODA-funded projects and government projects.
1.10. The Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry, business associations, goods producers associations and state economic groups shall coordinate with the Ministry of Justice and the Vietnam Lawyers Federation in implementing the solutions specified in Section II, Article 1 of this Decision. State economic groups shall evaluate their legal affairs staff and send qualified ones to lawyer training for international economic integration under Points 1.1 and 1.2, Section II, Article 1 of this Decision.
1.11. Lawyers, law-practicing organizations and enterprises are encouraged to participate in the implementation of this Scheme.
2. Funds to implement the Scheme
2.1. Funds to implement the Scheme shall be allocated from the state budget.
Funds to perform a number of tasks under the Scheme are estimated at VND 168 billion, including VND 108 billion to support training fees for trainees, which are calculated on the principles below:
- Trainees working for state agencies and local administration will have 100% of their training fees covered by the State;
- Trainees who are committed by law-practicing organizations to perform jobs requested by the Government will have 50% of their training fees covered by the State;
- Trainees sent to training courses by enterprises or state economic groups will have 100% of their training fees covered by those enterprises or groups;
- Other trainees shall pay all training fees themselves.
Funds to implement other solutions under the Scheme shall be allocated according to annual budget estimates under the State Budget Law.
2.2. To attract and mobilize contributions from enterprises, lawyers, law-practicing organizations, socio-professional organizations of lawyers, and domestic and overseas organi-zations and individuals to implement the Scheme.
3. Examination and review
Annually and periodically, to review performed jobs and draw experience for better implementation of solutions to achieve the Scheme’s objectives.
Article 2. This Decision takes effect on the date of its signing.
Article 3. Ministers, heads of ministerial-level agencies, heads of government-attached agencies and chairpersons of provincial-level People’s Committees shall implement this Decision.
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