Experts and officials in the advertising sector attended a discussion organised by the Thoi bao Kinh te Viet Nam (Vietnam Economic Times) .
Doctor Luu Vu Hai, director of the Authority of Broadcasting and Electronic Information, under the Ministry of Information and Communications.
Advertising is a form of information manifested in a concise way that is capable of making a strong impression on the public. Hence, it must be managed very closely.
One particularly common violation is advertising too often and for longer than permitted on television and the radio.
Another is that some products – particularly medicines, medical equipment and home appliances – are over-advertised.
The main reason for this is that the market economy has turned the mass media into a lucrative business. The media has therefore focused a great deal on raising revenue from advertising.
Wrong-doings in advertising tend to increase when there is loose management.
At present, the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism is a State management office in charge of managing outdoor advertising and issuing legal documents on advertising. Meanwhile, the Ministry of Information and Communications is authorised to grant licences to print and on-line newspapers, magazines, television and broadcasting to sell adverts. This has led to an overlapping in the management of advertising.
It is better to assign the Ministry of Industry and Trade to manage advertising, as most countries in the region have done. In addition, the Government should establish an advertising department. I think advertising is a creative economy that helps Viet Nam's trade names become more competitive in the domestic and international markets. For this reason, it is essential to place advertising in a central position in a market-oriented economy. Staff and managers in advertising must be highly skilled, creative and have the know-how to apply the latest technology.
It is necessary to change the current thinking about advertising in the new law. Consistency and transparency in administrative reform are needed to eliminate interested groups managing and granting advertising licences. Cutting the need for advertising would be a breakthrough measure and comprehensively change the face of the advertising sector.
The draft will regulate both profit-making advertising and non-profit making advertising. I suggest it would be better not to include the latter in the law.
I propose that the draft does not cover outdoor advertising (on billboards, etc.) to streamline administrative reform.
The management of content, form and the location for outdoor advertising is being covered by different offices – the culture, sports and tourism sector; the industry and trade sector; the agriculture and rural development sector, among others. Supervision would be overlapping and adversely affect the interests of individuals and organisations that want to advertise. Many outdoor advertising boards that were never licensed or their licences have expired have yet to be removed.
Fines are not enforced, and when they are they are not severe enough to deter repeat offences.
The law's scope is very large and covers a variety of commodities and services. Advertising takes many forms. Therefore, legal documents on advertising and State management over the issue of licences needs to be clearly regulated, transparent and designed only to protect the interests of businesses and consumers. This will contribute to healthy competition.
The Law on Advertising needs to satisfy the implementation of international commitments Viet Nam has signed.
The National Assembly is expected to regulate sanctions and to limit the issuance of by-law documents to ensure the law's feasibility, strictness and clearness.
The contents of the draft needs more focus on issues of repetition and overlapping in many legal documents. The compiling committee and the NA Committee for Law must re-examine the contents of the draft law with a view to amending and completing it. — VNS