Vietnam is a rapidly growing market for the gaming industry, attracting the attention of foreign game developers. However, before entering the Vietnamese gaming market, foreign game developers must understand the Vietnamese gaming regulations and policies.
In this blog post, we will provide a comprehensive overview of Vietnamese gaming regulations and policies that foreign company need to know to enter Vietnam.
Guiding Regulations and Policies for references
- Decree 72/2013/ND-CP – Key regulation governing the Vietnamese gaming industry. It regulates the management, provision, and use of internet services and information on the internet.
- Decree No.103/2009/ND-CP promulgating the regulation on cultural activities and commercial provision of public cultural services.
- Vietnam’s Specific Commitments to WTO in Services
What needed to know?
1. Licensing and registration:
To enter the Vietnamese gaming market, foreign game developers must first obtain a license from the Ministry of Information and Communications (MIC). It’s important to note that only Vietnamese enterprises can apply for G1, G2, G3 and G4 gaming licenses in Vietnam. A Vietnamese entity is defined under Law on Enterprise 2014 as an entity established or registered to establish under Vietnam laws and has headquarters in Vietnam.
Online Games Classification:
Games are classified as G1, G2, G3, or G4, depending on their level of interaction among players and between players and the game server.
- G1: Video games that have interaction among multiple players via the game server
- G2: Video games that only have interaction between the players and the game server
- G3: Video games that have interaction among multiple players without interaction between players and the game server
- G4: Video games that are downloaded from the Internet without the interaction among players and between players and the game server
Licensing Procedures for G1 Games:
For G1 games, the license is valid for 10 years and can be extended for an additional year. The Ministry of Information and Technology is considering reducing this validity to 5 years.
To apply for a G1 gaming license, an enterprise must have a headquarters and contact number, a registered domain name, at least one personnel who administers two servers, and a business manager who holds at least a Bachelor’s degree. The enterprise must also have sufficient financial capacity, adequate gaming systems, and backup plans for equipment, connection, and data. Additionally, the enterprise must have professional measures in place to manage game forum content.
To operate a G1 game, the game provider must obtain Approval for script content for each game. In order to qualify for this approval, the game content must be culturally appropriate, and the age rating must be suitable for the content. The game provider must also have measures in place to manage players’ accounts. During the operation phase, the game provider must ensure that players under the age of 18 do not play for more than 180 minutes in a 24-hour period.
Required documents that are part of the application dossier include: those proving the ownership of the domain name, business location rental or ownership contract, game service payment plan, and list of partners providing payment assistance services, as well as a detailed description of host devices.
2. Content regulations:
Vietnamese content regulations prohibit content that is offensive or harmful to Vietnamese culture and traditions. Foreign investors must ensure that their games comply with Vietnamese content regulations, including the prohibition of content that promotes violence, obscenity, or gambling (due to Anti-gambling laws).
3. Advertising regulations:
Advertising regulations for online games in Vietnam are stringent, and game developers must ensure that they comply with all requirements to avoid legal action. The regulations apply to all forms of game advertising, including social media, websites, and mobile apps.
In Vietnam, game advertisements must not contain any of the following:
- Promote or incite violence, obscenity, or gambling
- Contain content that is discriminatory against a particular race, religion, gender, or nationality
- Promote the use of drugs or alcohol
- Contain false or misleading information
- Misrepresent the game’s features or capabilities
Additionally, game developers must clearly display the age rating of the game in all advertising materials, and ensure that their advertisements are not targeted at under 18-year-old players.
4. Data privacy and security:
Under the Law on Cybersecurity, all organizations and individuals operating in Vietnam are required to protect personal information of Vietnamese citizens that they collect, use, and process. This includes game companies that operate in Vietnam, which must adhere to strict data privacy and security requirements. Game companies must obtain explicit consent from players before collecting their personal data, and they must take measures to ensure that player data is protected and not shared with unauthorized third parties.
Additionally, the Vietnamese government has issued a number of regulations to ensure that online games do not pose a threat to national security. Online game companies must register with the Ministry of Information and Communications and must comply with regulations related to content censorship, such as prohibiting content that incites violence, hatred, or discrimination.
Navigating these regulations can be difficult, time-consuming, and costly. In order to ensure compliance with these Vietnamese regulations, game companies could consider hiring a professional agency that specializes in the Vietnamese market or work with third-party service providers. These experts can help companies to be in line with local regulations and cultural sensitivities, and can also provide guidance on the best channels to reach the target audience.
Keep your business legal compliant with Gamota
GAMOTA is a leading game publisher based in Vietnam with 10 years of real experience and ensure the best publishing company in understanding the market. Our service is designed to help game developers and publishers navigate the complex world of Vietnamese gaming regulations. With Gamota, you can rest assured that your game will be fully compliant and ready for success in the Vietnamese market.