COVID-19 Update | Social Distancing Guidelines | Vietnam

Social distancing guidelines to cope with Covid-19 nationwide pandemic in Vietnam

Dear Clients and Friends,

Following up on our last Covid-19 updates on Directive No. 15/CT-TTg on the Resolute Implementation of the Peak Prevention Phase of the Covid-19 Pandemic (“Directive 15”) (*) and Directive No. 16/CT-TTg on the Implementation of Immediate Measures for the Prevention of Covid-19 Pandemic (“Directive 16”) (**), Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc officially announced Covid-19 as a nationwide pandemic in Vietnam on April 1, 2020 under Decision No. 447/QD-TTg (“Decision 447”).

Regulatory measures to cope with the Covid-19 pandemic which include the strict implementation of Directive 15 and Directive 16 are provided under Decision 447.  To provide further guidelines on the implementation of the social distancing under Directive 15 and Directive 16, the Government Office issued Official Letter No. 2601/VPCP-KGVX on April 3, 2020 (“OL 2601”).

This update summarizes the key takeaways under Directive 15, Directive 16, Decision 447 and OL 2601.

(*) See:

(**) See:


  • Under Directive 15 and Directive 16, nationwide social distancing has been applied for a 15-day period starting from April 1, 2020 and ending on April 15, 2020. For the time being, this is the key measure to cope with Covid-19; and
  • Under Decision 447, Covid-19 has been recognized as a national pandemic and the National Steering Committee for Pandemic Prevention and Control has been set up and led by Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam. The committee may (among others) decide to mobilize and requisition resources from enterprises in all economic sectors (including the private sector) and individuals to cope with the pandemic in case of a pandemic emergency declared by the Standing Committee of the National Assembly at the request of the Prime Minister or, in case the Standing Committee of the National Assembly is unable to meet, by the President.

Social distancing in Vietnam means:

  • Voluntary implementation of social distancing on a family unit or social unit basis;
  • Factories are required to ensure the safety distance, face mask wearing and disinfection rules;
  • People are requested to stay home and should not go outside except for essential circumstances, i.e., (1) to purchase food, medicine and other essential goods and services, (2) to attend to medical emergency needs or medical examination and treatment, (3) in the events of natural disasters or fires, (4) to work at State agencies or units, armed forces, diplomatic agencies and factories and facilities that provide essential services and goods (***), and (5) in other emergency circumstances;
  • Compulsory minimum 2-meter distance among people is required; and
  • Gathering in a group of more than 2 people outside offices, schools, hospitals and public places and gathering activities and events of more than 20 people in a room are prohibited.

(***) Factories and facilities that provide essential services and goods include (i) factories and production facilities, (ii) traffic and construction works, (iii) business premises providing essential services and goods (such as food, medicine; petrol, gas; electricity; water; fuel, etc.) and (iv) educational facilities, banks, treasuries, facilities providing services directly related to banking activities or business supporting services (such as notaries, law firms, registrars of asset ownership, registrars of secured transactions, etc.), securities, post, telecommunications, support services for transportation, export and import of goods, medical examination and treatment, funeral, etc. Those factories and facilities are allowed to continue their operation.

Other measures introduced:

  • State agencies are requested to make use of information technologies to implement working from home regime and encourage virtual meetings (****);
  • Public passenger transportation activities are mainly suspended;
  • Travel from virus-hit areas to other cities and provinces is banned, except for essential reasons, such as delivery of food or transporting of workers and materials for production;
  • Entry through main border gates and secondary border gates for travelers along the border between Vietnam and Laos, and Vietnam and Cambodia from April 1, 2020 is temporarily suspended. Entries of travelers through international border gates along the land boundary are strictly controlled.  Travelers from Laos and Cambodia will be subject to 14-day quarantine; and
  • Insurance companies are requested not to introduce and offer insurance policies relating to Covid-19 disease because medical treatment is being provided free of charge by the Government.

(****) In Ho Chi Minh City, the People’s Committee of Ho Chi Minh City has clarified that no more than one third of staff members of State agencies should work in office.  This requirement does not apply to armed forces and medical staff who all should work in office.

We want you to know that the safety and wellbeing of our clients and our teams are very important to us.  If you have any questions or concerns, we encourage you to reach out to your contact partner or you can email us at

Stay safe.

YKVN Covid19 Taskforce

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