Regulations on enterprises trading in alcohol distribution lines -

Alcohol trading is a conditional business line for domestic enterprises and foreign enterprises specified in Section 46, Appendix IV, Law on Investment 2020.

On the principle of alcohol business: Alcohol business belongs to the list of conditional business lines. Organizations and individuals engaged in alcohol business must comply with the provisions of the Law on Prevention and Control of Harmful Effects of Alcohol and Beer and the provisions of Decree 105/2017/ND-CP, amended and supplemented by Decree 17/2020/ND-CP

Requirements for distribution of alcohol:

    • The enterprise distributing alcohol (alcohol distributor) shall be established according to regulations of law.
    • There should be spirit distribution systems within at least 02 provinces or central-affiliated cities (including the administrative divisions where the spirit distributors’ headquarters is located); at least a spirit trader within each province or central-affiliated city. If the spirit distributor establishes a branch or business location besides its headquarters for the purpose of spirit sale, it is not required to ask for confirmation from the spirit wholesaler.
    • A written reference or an agreement in principle shall be made by another alcohol producer, distributor or wholesale.

II. Rights and obligations of alcohol distribution traders

    • Buying and selling alcohol of legal origin;
    • Post a valid copy of the license issued by the competent authority at the merchant’s liquor sales locations and may only buy and sell alcohol according to the contents of the issued license, except for the case of traders selling alcohol for on-site consumption.”
    • Implement the reporting regime and other obligations as prescribed in Decree 105/2017/ND-CP
    • Importing alcohol, purchasing alcohol from domestic liquor producers and other liquor distribution traders according to the contents of the license.
    • Selling alcohol to liquor distribution traders, wholesale liquor traders, alcohol retail traders, on-site alcohol traders within provinces/central-affiliated cities that have been licensed;
    • Selling alcohol to traders who buy alcohol for export.
    • Directly retail alcohol at traders’ business locations within provinces/central-affiliated cities that have been licensed;

III. Registration dossiers for enterprises trading in alcohol distribution lines

– Application for an alcohol distribution license according to Form No. 01 of Decree 105/2017/ND-CP

– A copy of the enterprise registration certificate or equivalent legal documents.

– Document concerning the spirit distribution system includes one of the two following types:

      • A copy of the agreement in principle, confirmation letter or commitment to participating in the spirit distribution system enclosed with a copy of the spirit wholesaling license of the wholesaler expected to participate in the spirit distribution system;
      • A copy of the distributor’s Certificate of registration of operation of the branch or Certificate of registration of the business location for spirit trading purpose;

– Documents relating to alcohol suppliers;

    • Copy of introductory documents or principle contracts of liquor traders, other liquor distribution traders or overseas liquor suppliers, which specify the intended types of liquor traded in accordance with the activities of the liquor suppliers;
    • In case the liquor supplier is a domestic trader, a copy of the liquor production license or liquor distribution license is required.

IV. Competence and procedures for granting liquor distribution business licenses

The Ministry of Industry and Trade is the agency that issues alcohol distribution licenses.

Traders (applicant) shall submit an application in person, by post or through the internet (if applicable) to a licensing authority;

Within 15 days from the day on which the valid application is received, the licensing authority shall consider processing and granting the license to the applicant. If the application is rejected, the licensing authority shall provide the applicant with a written explanation.

If the application is invalid, the licensing authority shall send a written request for additional documents to the applicant within 3 days from the day on which the application is received.

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