THE STATE PRESIDENT OF THE SOCIALIST REPUBLIC OF VIETNAM
In order to uniformly manage the accounting, ensuring that accounting be a tool for managing and supervising closely and efficiently all economic and financial activities, supplying information in a complete, truthful, timely, public and transparent manners, thereby meeting the organization, management and administration requirements of State agencies, enterprises, organizations and individuals;
Pursuant to the 1992 Constitution of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, which was amended and supplemented under Resolution No. 51/2001/QH10 dated December 25, 2001 of the Xth National Assembly, its 10th session;
This Law provides for accounting,
Article 1. Scope of regulation
This Law prescribes the contents of accounting work, the organization of accounting apparatuses, accountants and professional accounting activities.
Article 2. Subjects of application
1. The subjects of application of this Law include:
a) State agencies, non-business units and organizations which are funded with the State budget;
b) Non-business units and organizations which are not funded with the State budget;
c) Enterprises of all economic sectors, which are established and operate under the Vietnamese laws; branches and representative offices of foreign enterprises operating in Vietnam;
e) Individual business households, cooperation groups;
f) Accountants, other persons related to accounting.
2. For representative offices of foreign enterprises operating in Vietnam, individual business households and cooperation groups, the Government shall specify the contents of accounting work on the basis principles laid down in this Law.
Article 3. Application of international treaties
Where the international treaties which the Socialist Republic of Vietnam has signed or acceded to contain accounting provisions different from those of this Law, the provisions of such international treaties shall apply.
Article 4. Interpretation of terms and phrases
In this Law, the following terms and phrases are construed as follows:
1. Accounting means the collection, processing, examination, analysis and supply of economic and financial information in the forms of value, kind and labor time.
2. Financial accounting means the collection, processing, examination, analysis and supply of economic and financial information in financial statements to the subjects that need to use information of the accounting units.
3. Management accounting means the collection, processing, examination, analysis and supply of economic and financial information according to the requirement of economic and financial management and decision within the accounting units.
4. Economic and financial operations mean specific arising activities that increase or decrease assets and/or asset-forming sources of the accounting units.
5. Accounting units mean the subjects specified at Points a, b, c, d and e, Clause 1, Article 2 of this Law, which make financial statements.
6. Accounting period means a definite period from the time an accounting unit starts to make entries in accounting books to the time it ends the making of entries in accounting book and closes accounting books in order to make financial statements.
7. Accounting vouchers mean papers and information-carrying articles reflecting economic and financial operations that have arisen and completed, serving as a basis for making entries in accounting books.
8. Accounting records mean accounting vouchers, accounting books, financial statements, management accounting reports, audit reports, accounting inspection reports and other accounting-related records.
9. Accounting regime means regulations and guidelines on accounting in a particular domain or particular jobs, which are promulgated by State management bodies in charge of accounting or by organizations as authorized by State management bodies in charge of accounting or by organizations as authorized by State management bodies in charge of accounting.
10. Accounting inspection means the consideration and assessment of the observance of the accounting legislation, truthfulness and accuracy of accounting information and data.
11. Accountancy practice means the provision of accounting services by enterprises or individuals that satisfy all criteria and conditions therefor.
12. Accounting forms mean the forms of accounting books, order and methods of making entries therein and the relationships among accounting books.
13. Accounting methods mean specific modes and procedures for performing each content of accounting work.
Article 5. Accounting tasks
1. Collecting and processing accounting information and data according to the subjects and contents of accounting work as well as the accounting standards and regimes.
2. Inspecting and supervising financial revenues and expenditures, collection and payment obligation and debt clearance; inspecting the management and use of assets and asset-forming sources; detecting and precluding acts of violating the finance and accounting legislation.
3. Analyzing accounting information and data; giving advice, proposing measures in service of the economic and financial management and decision of the accounting units.
4. Supplying accounting information and data according to law provisions.
Article 6. Accounting requirements
1. To reflect fully arising economic and financial operations in accounting vouchers, accounting books and financial statements.
2. To reflect accounting information and data in time and on schedule as prescribed.
3. To reflect accounting information and data explicitly, understandably and accurately.
4. To reflect truthfully the actual condition and nature of events, contents and value of economic and financial operations.
5. Accounting information and data must be reflected continuously from the commencement to the completion of economic and financial activities; from the establishment to the operation termination of accounting units; accounting data reflecting this period must ensure continuity from those of the preceding period.
6. To classify and arrange accounting information and data in an orderly, systematic and comparable manner.
Article 7. Accounting principles
1. The value of assets shall be calculated according to their original prices covering the costs of purchase, loading and unloading, transportation, assembly, processing and other directly related costs incurred by the time of putting assets into the ready-for-use state. Accounting units must not adjust without permission the value of assets already recorded in accounting books, unless otherwise provided for by law.
2. The selected accounting regulations and methods must be applied consistently throughout the annual accounting period; if there are any changes therein, the accounting units must give explanations therefor in their financial statements.
3. The accounting units must collect and reflect objectively, fully and truthfully all economic and financial operations according to the accounting period when such operations arise.
4. Information and data in the annual financial statements of the accounting units must be publicized according to the provisions in Article 32 of this Law.
5. The accounting units must use the methods of asset valuation and allocation of revenues and expenditures in a prudent manner without distorting the results of their economic and financial operations.
6. State agencies, non-business units and organizations funded with the State budget must, apart from complying with the provisions in Clauses 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 of this Article, must also do accounting work according to the State budget index.
Article 8. Accounting standards
1. Accounting standards comprise basic accounting principles and methods for making entries in accounting books and for compiling financial statements.
2. The Ministry of Finance shall prescribe accounting standards on the basis of international accounting standards and the provisions of this Law.
Article 9. Accounting objects
1. The accounting objects in State budget collection and spending activities, administrative and non-business activities of units and organizations funded with the State budget include:
a) Cash, supplies and fixed assets;
b) Funding sources, funds;
c) Payments inside and outside the accounting units;
d) Revenues, expenditures and handling of differences to revenues from and expenditures on activities;
e) Revenues, expenditures and the State budget remainder;
f) Financial investments and credits of the State;
g) The State's debts and the handling thereof;
h) National properties;
i) Other assets related to the accounting units.
2. The accounting objects in activities of units and organizations not funded with the State budget include assets and asset-forming sources specified at Points a, b, c, d and i, Clause 1 of this Article.
3. The accounting objects in business activities include:
a) Fixed assets, current assets;
b) Liabilities and owner's equity;
c) Turnovers, business costs, other outlays and incomes;
d) Taxes and amounts remittable into the State budget;
e) Business results and shared business results;
f) Other assets related to the accounting units.
4. The accounting objects in banking, credit, insurance, securities, financial investment activities, apart from those specified in Clause 3 of this Article, also include:
a) Financial investments, credits;
b) Payments inside and outside the accounting units;
c) Committed and guaranteed amounts, valuable papers.
Article 10. Financial accounting, management accounting, general accounting and detailed accounting
1. Accounting at the accounting units comprises financial accounting and management accounting.
2. When carrying out financial accounting and management accounting, the accounting units must practice general accounting and detailed accounting as follows;
a) General accounting must collect, process, record and supply general information on economic and financial activities of the units. General accounting uses monetary units to reflect the situation of assets, the asset-forming sources, the situation and results of economic and financial activities of the accounting units;
b) Detailed accounting must collect, process, record and supply detailed information in monetary units, kind units and labor time units according to each particular accounting object in the accounting units. Detailed accounting illustrates general accounting. Detailed accounting data must dovetail general accounting data in a certain accounting period.
3. The Ministry of Finance shall guide the application of management accounting suitable to each field of activity.
Article 11. Calculation units used in accounting
The calculation units used in accounting include:
1. The monetary unit being Vietnam dong (with the national symbol of "d" and the international symbol of "VND"). Where economic or financial operations arise in foreign currencies and Vietnam dong at the actual exchange rates or converted at the exchange rates announced by Vietnam State Bank at the time they arise, unless otherwise provided for by law; for those foreign currencies for which the rates of exchange with Vietnam dong are not available, they must be converted via a foreign currency for which the rate of exchange with Vietnam dong is available.
The accounting units which have revenues and expenditures mostly in foreign currencies may choose a foreign currency prescribed by the Ministry of Finance as a monetary unit for accounting, but, when making financial statements for use in Vietnam, must convert it into Vietnam dong at the exchange rate announced by Vietnam State Bank at the time of closing books for making financial statements, unless otherwise provided for by law.
2. The kind unit and the labor-time unit being the official measurement units of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam; where other measurement units are used, they must be converted into the official measurement units of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.
Article 12. Script and numerals used in accounting
1. The scrip used in accounting is the Vietnamese script. Where a foreign script must be used in accounting vouchers, accounting books and financial statements in Vietnam, the Vietnamese script and the foreign script must be used simultaneously.
2. Numerals used in accounting are Arabic numerals: 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9; following the thousand, million, billion, thousand billion, million billion and billion billion, a point (.) must be placed; for decimals, a comma (,) must be placed after the numeral representing units.
Article 13. Accounting period
1. An accounting period may be an annual accounting period, a quarterly accounting period or a monthly accounting period, which is prescribed as follows:
a) An annual accounting period consists of twelve months, counting from the beginning of January 1 to the end of December 31 of the calendar year. For accounting units which have unique organizational and/or operational characteristics, they may select an annual accounting period consisting of twelve full months according to the calendar year, starting from the beginning of the first day of the first month of a quarter to the end of the last day of the last month of preceding quarter of the subsequent year and shall have to notify the finance offices thereof.
b) A quarterly accounting period consists of three months, counting from the beginning of the first day of the first month of a quarter to the end of the last day of the last month of the quarter.
c) A monthly accounting period consists of one month, counting from the beginning of the first day to the end of the last day of the month.
2. The accounting period of newly founded accounting units is prescribed as follows:
a) The first accounting period of newly founded enterprises is counted from the date they are granted the business registration certificates to the end of the last day of the annual accounting period, the quarterly accounting period or the monthly accounting period prescribed in Clause 1 of this Article;
b) The first accounting period of other accounting units is counted from the effective date inscribed in their establishment decisions to the end of the last day of the annual accounting period, the quarterly accounting period or the monthly accounting period prescribed in Clause 1 of this Article;
3. For accounting units, when being separated, split, consolidated, merged, transformed in ownership, dissolved, terminating operation or going bankrupt, their last accounting period is counted from the beginning of the first day of the annual accounting period, the quarterly accounting period or the monthly accounting period prescribed in Clause 1 of this Article to the end of the day preceding the effective date inscribed in the decisions on their division, separation, consolidation, merger, ownership transformation, dissolution, operation termination or bankruptcy.
4. Where the first annual accounting period or the last annual accounting period is shorter than 90 days, it shall be allowed to be added (+) to the subsequent annual accounting period or the preceding annual accounting period for counting as an annual accounting period. The first or last annual accounting period must be shorter than fifteen months.
Article 14. Prohibited acts
1. Forging, falsely declaring, colluding with or forcing other persons to forge or falsely declare or erasing accounting records.
2. Deliberately supplying or certifying, colluding with or forcing other persons to supply or certify untruthful accounting information and data.
3. Not recording in accounting books assets of or related to the accounting units.
4. Destroying or deliberately damaging accounting records ahead of the archival time limit specified in Article 40 of this Law.
5. Promulgating or publicizing accounting standards and/or regimes ultra vires.
6. Abusing one's post and powers to threaten or take revenge on accountants in the performance of accounting work.
7. Persons in charge of managing and/or administrating the accounting units and working concurrently as accountants, storekeepers or cashiers or buying and selling assets, except for private enterprises and individual business households.
8. Arranging accountants or chief accountants who fail to satisfy the criteria and conditions specified in Articles 50 and 53 of this Law.
9. Other accounting acts prohibited by law.
Article 15. Value of accounting records and data
1. Accounting records and data shall have legal validity with regard to the economic and financial situation of the accounting units and be publicized according to law provisions.
2. Accounting records and data shall serve as a basis for drawing up and approving plans, cost estimates, final settlements and for considering and handling law violations.
Article 16. Responsibilities for managing, using and supplying accounting information and records
1. The accounting units shall have to manage, use, preserve and archive accounting records.
2. The accounting units shall have to supply complete and truthful accounting information and records in a timely and transparent manner to organizations and individuals according to law provisions.
CONTENTS OF ACCOUNTING WORK
Section 1. ACCOUNTING VOUCHERS
Article 17. Contents of accounting vouchers
1. An accounting voucher must contain the following principal contents:
a) The name and serial number of the accounting voucher;
b) The date of making the accounting voucher;
c) The name and address of the accounting voucher-making unit or individual;
d) The date and address of the accounting voucher-receiving unit or individual;
e) The contents of the arising economic or financial operation;
f) The quantity, unit price and money amount of the economic or financial operation, inscribed in figures; the total money amount of the accounting vouchers for money receipt or payment inscribed in both figures and words;
g) The signatures and full names of the maker and the approver of, and persons related to, the accounting voucher.
2. Apart from the principal contents specified in Clause 1 of this Article, accounting vouchers may have other contents, depending on their types.
Article 18. Electronic vouchers
1. Electronic vouchers are regarded as accounting vouchers when they contain the contents specified in Article 17 of this Law, are expressed in the form of electronic data and encoded, and are not modified in the process of transmission via computer networks or via such information-carrying articles as magnetic tapes or discs, assorted payment cards.
2. The Government shall stipulate in detail electronic vouchers.
Article 19. Making of accounting vouchers
1. Accounting vouchers must be made for all arising economic and financial operations related to the operation of the accounting units. For every economic or financial operation, the accounting voucher shall be made only once.
2. Accounting vouchers must be made legibly, fully, timely and accurately according to the contents prescribed in their forms. Where accounting vouchers have no set forms, the accounting units may make such accounting vouchers by themselves, which, however, must contain all the contents specified in Article 17 of this Law.
3. The contents of economic and/or financial operations inscribed on accounting vouchers must not be abbreviated, erased or corrected, must be written with ink pen, with figures and words closely following one another without space in between and blank spaces being crossed; erased or corrected vouchers shall not be valid for payment and entry into accounting books. When an accounting voucher is inscribed wrongly, it must be invalidated with a cross.
4. Accounting vouchers must be made with a sufficient number of copies as prescribed. When an accounting voucher is made with many copies for a single economic or financial operation, the contents of such copies must be alike. For accounting vouchers made by the accounting units specified at Points a, b, c and d, Clause 1, Article 2 of this Law for dealings with organizations or individuals outside the accounting unit, the copies handed over to such organizations or individuals must be appended with the seals of the accounting units.
5. The makers, approvers and other signatories of accounting vouchers shall be accountable for the contents thereof.
6. Accounting vouchers made in the form of electronic voucher must comply with the provisions in Article 18 of this Law and Clauses 1 and 2 of this Article. Electronic vouchers must be printed on paper and archived under the provisions in Article 40 of this Law.
Article 20. Signing of accounting vouchers
1. Accounting vouchers must be properly signed. Signatures on accounting vouchers must be written with ink pen. Accounting vouchers must not be signed in red ink or with carved signature seals. A person's signature on accounting vouchers must be uniform.
2. Accounting vouchers must be signed by competent persons or authorized persons. It is strictly forbidden to sign accounting vouchers which are not yet inscribed with the full contents falling under the responsibilities of the signatories.
3. Accounting vouchers for payment must be signed by competent persons for approval of payment and chief accountants or authorized persons before the payment is effected. Accounting vouchers for payment must be signed on every copy.
4. Electronic vouchers must contain electronic signatures according to law provisions.
Article 21. Sale invoices
1. When selling goods or provide services, organizations and individuals must make sale invoices and hand them over to customers. For cases of goods retailing or service provision involving a sum of money lower than the prescribed level, sale invoices may not be made if not asked for by the goods buyers. The Government shall specify the cases of goods sale and the sales level for which sale invoices may not be made.
2. When buying goods or being provided with services, organizations and individuals may ask the goods sellers or service providers to make and hand over sale invoices to them.
3. Sale invoices may take the following forms:
a) Invoices made on pre-printed forms;
b) Invoices printed from machines;
c) Electronic invoices;
d) Stamps, tickets or cards pre-printed with the payment prices.
4. The Ministry of Finance shall prescribe the invoice forms, organize the printing, circulation and use of sale invoices. Where organizations or individuals print sale invoices by themselves, they must obtain the written approvals of competent finance agencies before printing.
5. When selling goods or providing services, if organizations or individuals fail to make or hand over sale invoices or make sale invoices at variance with the provisions in Articles 19 and 20 of this Law and Clauses 1, 2, 3 and 4 of this Article, they shall be handled according to law provisions.
Article 22. Management and use of accounting vouchers
1. Information and data written on accounting vouchers shall serve as a basis for making entries in accounting books.
2. Accounting vouchers must be arranged according to their economic contents, in the temporal order and safely preserved according to law provisions.
3. Only competent State bodies may temporarily seize, confiscate or seal up accounting vouchers. In case of temporary seizure or confiscation, the competent State bodies must make copies of the temporarily seized or confiscated vouchers and signed such copies for certification, and concurrently make records thereon, clearly stating the reasons therefor, the quantity of each kind of temporarily seized or confiscated vouchers, append their signatures and stamps thereto.
4. The competent bodies which seal up accounting vouchers must make records thereon, clearly stating the reasons therefor, the quantity of each kind of sealed-up accounting vouchers, append their signatures and stamps thereto.
Section 2. BOOK-KEEPING ACCOUNTS AND ACCOUNTING BOOKS
Article 23. Book-keeping accounts and the system thereof
1. Book-keeping accounts are used to classify and systemize economic and financial operations according to their economic contents.
2. The system of book-keeping accounts consists of accounts needed to be used. Each accounting unit must use a system of book-keeping accounts.
3. The Ministry of Finance shall stipulate in detail book-keeping accounts and the systems of book-keeping accounts.
Article 24. Selection and application of a system of book-keeping accounts
1. The accounting units must base themselves on the system of book-keeping accounts prescribed by the Ministry of Finance to select a system of book-keeping accounts for application at their respective units.
2. The accounting units may itemize the selected book-keeping accounts in service their management requirements.
Article 25. Accounting books and the system of accounting books
1. Accounting books are used to record, systemize and store all economic and financial operations that have arisen in relation to the accounting units.
2. An accounting book must be legibly inscribed with the name of the accounting unit, the book's name, the dates of its opening and closing; the signatures of its maker, the chief accountant and the accounting unit's representative at law, the number of pages, and page-overlapping stamps.
3. An accounting book must contain the following principal contents:
a) The dates of entries;
b) The serial numbers and dates of accounting vouchers used as a basis for making entries.
c) Summaries of the contents of the arising economic and financial operations;
d) Money amounts of the arising economic and financial operations, which are recorded in book-keeping accounts;
e) The period-beginning balance, amounts arising in the period and the period-end balance.
4. Accounting books include general and detailed accounting books.
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