The regulation on preliminary environmental impact assessment

Published on 24 - 05 - 2021
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On 21/5/2021, the Government has just issued the Decree No. 54/2021/ND-CP stipulating on preliminary environmental impact assessment.

Accordingly, this Decree details the preliminary environmental impact assessment; applies to agencies, organizations and individuals participating in or related to investment, public investment, public-private partnership investment, construction investment and the issuance of investment registration certificates, except for the case of granting the investment registration certificate at the request of the investor.

Specifically, agencies, organizations and individuals that propose investment projects that are subject to performing preliminary environmental impact assessment include: Public investment projects (except for urgent public investment projects, projects under the national target program, component projects of the ones for which investment policies have been decided by competent authorities, investment preparation tasks, planning tasks); investment projects under the mode of public-private partnership (PPP project); investment projects subject to the approval of investment policies in accordance with the law on investment; investment projects subject to the issuance of an investment registration certificate, except for the case of issuance of an investment registration certificate at the request of the investor.

Contents of the preliminary environmental impact assessment include: Assessment of the suitability of the location of the investment project with the National Environmental Protection Strategy, the National Environmental Protection Master Plan, the content of environmental protection in regional planning, provincial planning and other related plannings; identifying and forecasting the main environmental impacts of investment projects on the environment on the basis of scale, production technology and location of project implementation; identifying environmentally sensitive factors of the area where the investment project is implemented according to the location options (if any); analyzing, evaluating and selecting plans on scale, production technology, waste treatment technology, location of investment project implementation and measures to minimize environmental impacts; identifying the main environmental issues and scope of environmental impacts that need paying attention during the performance of the environmental impact assessment.

The Decree also stipulates that an investment project, whose environment impact assessment report has been appraised by a competent authority before the effective date of this Decree with the approval result without amending or supplementing and the ones that have their environmental impact assessment reports approved by a competent authority before the effective date of this Decree are not required to carry out a preliminary environmental impact assessment.

An investment project that has undergone a preliminary environmental impact assessment and its investment policie is approved by a competent authority is not required to conduct a preliminary environmental impact assessment when applying for an investment registration certificate.

For investment projects under the mode of public-private partnership, which have received the investment policy decision by the competent authority before January 1, 2021 and have made an environmental impact assessment report according to provisions of the law on environmental protection shall continue to comply with the provisions of law at the time of receipt. In case an investment project under the mode of public-private partnership, whose investment policy decision has been received by a competent authority before January 1, 2021 but has not yet made an environmental impact assessment report, it is implemented in accordance with the law on investment under the mode of public-private partnership and the law on public investment.

This Decree takes effect from the date of signing. The Article 12 of Decree No. 40/2020/ND-CP dated April 6, 2020 of the Government detailing the implementation of a number of articles of the Law on Public Investment is annulled.

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