Construction Law

THE NATIONAL ASSEMBLY

No: 16/2003/QH11

SOCIALIST REPUBLIC OF VIET NAM

Independence – Freedom – Happiness

Ha Noi, day 26 month 11 year 2003

CONSTRUCTION LAW

(No. 16/2003/QH11 of November 26, 2003)

Pursuant to the 1992 Constitution of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, which was amended and supplemented under Resolution No. 51/2001/QH10 of December 25, 2001 of the 10th session of the Xth National Assembly;

This Law prescribes construction activities.

Chapter I

GENERAL PROVISIONS

Article 1. Scope of regulation

This Law prescribes construction activities; and rights and obligations of organizations and individuals that invest in the construction of works and conduct construction activities.

Article 2. Objects of application

This Law shall apply to Vietnamese organizations and individuals; as well as foreign organizations and individuals, that invest in the construction of works and conduct construction activities in the Vietnamese territory. In cases where an international treaty which the Socialist Republic of Vietnam has signed or acceded to contains provisions different from those of this Law, the provisions of such international treaty shall apply.

Article 3. Interpretation of terms

In this Law, the following terms and phrases shall be construed as follows:

1. Construction activities include the elaboration of construction plannings, formulation of projects on investment in work construction, construction surveys, construction work designing, execution of work construction, supervision of work construction, management of projects on investment in work construction, selection of contractors in construction activities and other activities related to work construction.

2. Construction works mean products created by human labor and with building materials and equipment installed therein, affixed to land, which may include underground and ground components, underwater and on-water-surface components and are constructed according to designs. Construction works include public-utility works, dwelling houses, industrial works, traffic works, irrigations works, energy works and other types of works.

3. Equipment installed in works includes work equipment and technological equipment. Work equipment means those installed in construction works according to construction designs. Technological equipment means those included in technological chains installed in construction works according to technological designs.

4. Execution of work construction means the construction, and installation of equipment for newly built, repaired, renovated, relocated, embellished or restored works; dismantlement of works; warranty and maintenance of works.

5. Technical infrastructures system includes traffic, information and communication, energy supply, public lighting, water supply and drainage, waste treatment facilities and other works.

6. Social infrastructures system includes healthcare, cultural, educational, sport, commercial and public service works, greenery, parks, water surface and other works.

7. Red-line demarcation means a boundary line drawn on the planning map and on the field, for purpose of demarcating between land plots permitted for work construction and land plots reserved for traffic roads or other technical infrastructures and public spaces.

8. Construction demarcation means a border line of a work permitted to be constructed on a land plot.

9. Construction planning means the organization of urban space and rural population quarters, and systems of technical and social infrastructures, in order to establish a living environment suitable to people residing in territorial areas, and ensure the harmony between national interest and community interest, meet the socio-economic development, defense, security and environmental protection objectives. A construction planning is demonstrated through a construction planning scheme, consisting of charts, drawings, layouts and explanations.

10. Regional construction planning means the organization of system of population quarters, systems of technical and social infrastructures within the administrative boundaries of a province or several provinces in conformity with requirements of the socio-economic development in each period.

11. Urban construction general planning means the organization of urban space and urban technical and social infrastructures in line with the socio-economic development overall planning, branch development planning, ensuring defense and security of each region and the whole country in each period.

12. Urban construction detailed planning means the concretization of the urban construction general planning’s contents, serving as a legal basis for management of the work construction, supply of information, licensing of work construction, land assignment and land lease for execution of projects on investment in work construction.

13. Rural population quarter construction planning means the organization of space and system of technical and social infrastructures of a rural population quarter.

14. Rural population quarter means an area where many households reside and are bound together in their production, daily life and other social activities within boundaries of a specific zone, i.e. a commune center, village, hamlet, buonphum or soc (hereinafter collectively called village for short) formed on the basis of natural conditions, socio-economic conditions, culture, customs and other factors.

15. Urban designing means the concretization of the contents of the urban construction general planning and detailed planning on architecture of works in urban areas, landscape for each functional quarter or street and other public spaces in urban areas.

16. Work construction investment report means a dossier of intended work construction investment submitted to competent authority(ies) for investment licensing.

17. Work construction investment project means a collection of proposals concerning the contribution of capital for new construction, expansion or renovation of construction works, with a view to developing, maintaining and raising the quality of works, products or services within a given duration. A work construction investment project comprises the explanation and the basic design.

18. Economic-technical report on work construction means a concise work construction investment project which sets forth only basic requirements according to regulations.

19. Construction rules mean regulations to be compulsorily applied to construction activities, promulgated by the State management agencies in charge of construction.

20. Construction standards mean regulations on technical standards, economic-technical norms, order for performing technical jobs, targets, technical indexes and natural indexes, promulgated or recognized by competent agencies or organizations for application in construction activities. Construction standards include compulsory standards and standards encouraged to be applied.

21. Work construction investor means capital owner or person assigned to manage and use capital for investment in work construction.

22. Contractors in construction activities mean organizations and individuals that are fully capable of conducting construction activities or practicing construction when participating in contractual relations in construction activities.

23. Construction general contractor means a contractor signing contracts directly with a work construction investor to undertake completely a type of job or all jobs of a work construction investment project. Construction general contractor takes the following principal forms: engineering general contractor; work construction general contractor; work engineering and construction general contractor; engineering, technological equipment supply and construction general contractor; general contractor for formulation of work construction investment project, work engineering, technological equipment supply and construction.

24. Principal contractor in construction activities means a contractor signing a contract directly with a work construction investor to perform the principal part of a kind of job in a work construction investment project.

25. Sub-contractor in construction activities means a contractor signing a contract with a principal contractor or a construction general contractor to perform a part of job of the principal contractor or general contractor.

26. Separate dwelling house means a work constructed within a residential land area under the use right of a household or an individual according to law provisions.

27. Basic design means a set of documents comprising explanations and drawings demonstrating the principal designing solution, which fully meets the conditions for estimation of total investment capital and serves as basis for deployment of subsequent designing steps.

28. Author’s supervision means the designer’s supervising activities in the course of work construction in order to ensure that the construction strictly comply with the design.

29. Construction work incidents mean impairments beyond the permitted safety limits, thus putting the construction work in danger of collapse, having caused the collapse of part of the work or the entire work, or rendering it impossible to use the work according to the design.

Article 4. Basic principles in construction activities

Organizations and individuals engaged in construction activities must comply with the following basic principles:

1. Ensuring the compliance of the work construction with the planning and designs; the artistic appearance of works, the protection of the environment and overall landscape; the suitability with natural conditions and socio-cultural characteristics of each locality; combining socio-economic development with national defense and security;

2. Complying with the construction rules and standards;

3. Guaranteeing quality, progress and safety of works, human life, asset, fire and explosion prevention and fighting, environmental sanitation;

4. Ensuring the synchronous construction in each work, synchronous construction of technical infrastructures;

5. Ensuring thrift and efficiency, combating wastefulness, unreasonable loss and other negative phenomena in construction activities.

Article 5. Types and grades of construction works

1. Construction works are divided by type and grade.

2. Types of construction works are determined according to their utility. Each type of construction works is divided into five grades, including special grade, grades I, II, III and IV.

3. Grades of construction works are determined according to types of construction works and based on their sizes, technical requirements, construction materials and lifetime.

4. The Government prescribes the classification of types and grades of construction works.

Article 6. Construction rules and construction standards

1. The system of construction rules and construction standards must be promulgated or recognized by the competent State management agency in charge of construction for uniform application in construction activities.

2. Construction activities must comply with the construction rules and construction standards. In cases where foreign construction standards are applied, the consents of the competent State management agency in charge of construction must be obtained.

3. Organizations and individuals may study and propose construction rules and/or construction standards to the competent State management agency in charge of construction for promulgation or recognition.

Article 7. Construction practicing capability, construction operation capability

1. The construction practicing capability is prescribed for individuals engaged in construction activities. The construction operation capability is prescribed for organizations engaged in construction activities.

2. The construction practicing capability of individuals is determined in grades on the basis of their professional qualifications certified by a lawful specialized training organization, experience and professional ethics. Individuals engaged in construction engineering and planning, construction survey, work designing and/or supervision of work construction, when independently conducting such activities, must have appropriate practice certificates and bear personal responsibility for their work.

3. The construction activity operation of organizations is determined in grades on the basis of construction practicing capability of individuals in such organizations, experience in construction activities, financial status, equipment and managerial capacity of such organizations .

4. Foreign organizations and individuals engaged in construction activities in the territory of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam must meet all the conditions prescribed in Clauses 1, 2 and 3 of this Article and be granted operation licenses by the competent State management agency in charge of construction.

5. The Government prescribes the construction operation capability of organizations, the construction practicing capability of individuals and the granting of construction practice certificates to individuals suitable to different types and grades of works.

Article 8. Supervision of the observance of the construction legislation

1. The National Assembly, the Standing Committee of the National Assembly, the Nationalities Council, the Committees of the National Assembly, the delegations of National Assembly deputies, the National Assembly deputies, the People’s Councils, the Standing Boards of the People’s Councils, the Boards of the People’s Councils, deputies to the People’s Councils of all levels shall, within the ambit of their respective tasks and powers, have to supervise the observance of the construction legislation.

2. Vietnam Fatherland Front and its member organizations shall, within the ambit of their respective tasks and powers, have to propagate and mobilize people to observe and supervise the observance of the construction legislation.

Article 9. Encouragement policies in construction activities

The State adopts policies to encourage and create conditions for organizations and individuals to research into and apply advanced construction sciences and technologies, use new construction materials, economically use natural resources and protect the environment; create conditions for organizations and individuals to join in construction activities under plannings in deep-lying and remote regions, regions meeting with exceptional difficulties and flood-prone regions.

Article 10. Acts strictly prohibited in construction activities

In construction activities, the following acts are strictly prohibited:

1. Constructing works in areas where construction is banned; constructing works in encroachment of the protection corridors of traffic or irrigation works, dikes, energy works, zones of historical-cultural relics and protection zones of other works prescribed by law; constructing works in areas prone to landslides or sweeping floods, except for work constructed to combat these calamities;

2. Constructing works in contravention of the planning, in encroachments of demarcation boundaries or construction landmarks; construction works without construction permits, for works which require construction permits under regulations, or constructing works at variance with the granted construction permits;

3. Contractors conduct construction activities beyond the conditions on construction practicing capability or construction operation capability they meet; selecting contractors who fail to satisfy the condition on construction practicing capability or construction operation capability to perform jobs;

4. Constructing works not in compliance with the construction rules or construction standards;

5. Violating the regulations on safety of human life, asset and environmental sanitation in construction;

6. Building annexes or lean-tos, thus encroaching upon public spaces and places, passages and other yards and grounds already included in the approved and publicized construction plannings;

7. Giving and taking bribes in construction activities; pre-fixing bidding results for self-seeking purposes, selling and purchasing bids, conniving with each other in bidding, making bids lower than the work construction costs in biddings;

8. Abusing positions and powers to violate the construction legislation; tolerating and covering up acts of violating the construction legislation;

9. Obstructing lawful construction activities;

10. Other acts of violation of the construction legislation.

Chapter II

CONSTRUCTION PLANNINGS

Section 1

 GENERAL PROVISIONS

Article 11. Construction plannings

1. Construction plannings must be elaborated and approved to serve as basis for subsequent construction activities. Construction plannings shall be elaborated for five years, ten years and long-term development orientation. Construction plannings must be periodically revised and adjusted to be compatible with the socio-economic development situation in each period. The adjustment of the construction plannings must ensure the successiveness of the construction plannings previously elaborated and approved.

2. The State allocates the State budget capital and adopts a policy to mobilize other capital sources for the elaboration of construction plannings. The State budget capital shall be incorporated in annual plans for elaborating regional construction plannings, urban construction general plannings and rural population quarter construction plannings, detailed planning on functional zones not under investment projects on the construction of concentrated works in business form.

3. The People’s Committees of all levels shall have to organize the elaboration of construction plannings within the administrative boundaries under their respective management according to decentralization and use such construction plannings as basis for managing construction activities, executing construction investment projects and deploying work construction.

4. Where the People’s Committees of all levels are incapable of performing the tasks of elaborating, adjusting and approving construction plannings, they may invite experts or hire consultants to perform such tasks.

5. All organizations and individuals must abide by the construction plannings already approved by the competent State agencies.

Article 12. Categorization of construction plannings

1. Construction plannings are categorized into the following three types:

a/ Regional construction plannings;

b/ Urban construction plannings, including urban construction general plannings and urban construction detailed plannings;

c/ Rural population quarter construction plannings.

2. The Government prescribes the order for elaborating construction plannings, dossiers and scales of assorted maps, and the cost of elaboration of each type of construction planning.

Article 13. General requirements on construction plannings

Construction plannings must meet the following general requirements:

1. Being in line with the socio-economic development overall plannings, development plannings of other branches and land-use plannings; construction detailed plannings must be in line with the construction general planning; ensure national defense and security and create a motive force for socio-economic development;

2. Organizing and arranging territorial space on the basis of rationally exploiting and using the natural resources, land and other resources in compatibility with the natural conditions, historical and socio-economic characteristics, scientific and technological advances of the country in each development period;

3. Establishing a comfortable, safe and sustainable living environment; satisfying higher and higher material and spiritual demands of people; protecting the environment and cultural heritage, conserving historical-cultural relics, natural landscapes, preserving and developing the national cultural identity;

4. Laying the foundation for the work of planning, investment management and construction investment attraction; management, exploitation and use of construction works in urban areas and rural population quarters.

Article 14. Conditions on organizations and individuals designing construction plannings

1. Organizations designing construction plannings must meet the following conditions:

a/ Having registered the construction planning designing activities;

b/ Having adequate and appropriate capability for construction planning designing activities;

c/ Individuals who take up the post of construction planning scheme manager or assume the prime responsibility for specialized designs of construction planning blue prints must have the construction practicing capability and practice certificates suitable to each type of construction planning.

2. Individuals independently practicing the construction planning designing profession must meet the following conditions:

a/ Having the practice capability and certificates for practicing the construction planning designing profession;

b/ Having registered the construction planning designing activities.

The Government prescribes the scope of construction planning designing activities of individuals independently practicing the construction planning designing profession.

Section 2

 REGIONAL CONSTRUCTION PLANNINGS

Article 15. Regional construction planning tasks

1. Responsibility to devise regional construction planning tasks is prescribed as follows:

a/ The Construction Ministry shall devise the tasks of regional construction planning for key regions and inter-provincial regions and submit them to the Prime Minister for approval after obtaining opinions of the concerned ministries, branches and provincial People’s Committees;

b/ The People’s Committees of the provinces and centrally-run cities (hereinafter collectively referred to as the provincial-level People’s Committees) shall devise the tasks of regional construction plannings within the administrative boundaries under their management and submit them to the People’s Councils of the provinces and centrally-run cities (hereinafter collectively referred to as the provincial-level People’s Councils) for decision.

2. Contents of regional construction planning tasks include:

a/ Forecasts of urban or rural population size in compatibility with the socio-economic development of the regions and the population distribution strategy of the nation for five-year, ten-year or longer periods;

b/ Spatial organization of main industrial establishments, systems of technical and social infrastructures within the region in each period in compatibility with the potentials and the regional general socio-economic development plannings;

c/ Spatial organization of the system of urban areas and population quarters in compatibility with the geographical and natural conditions of each region, ensuring