New mission of the ICT industry
Minister of Information and Communications Nguyen Manh Hung says Vietnam’s information and communications technology (ICT) industry has a rare opportunity to reposition itself.
If the ICT industry continues to focus on assembly, processing and outsourcing, he said at a conference reviewing 2020 developments and presenting tasks for 2021, it would stagnate. However, if it adopts the “Make in Vietnam” strategy for the development of Vietnam’s digital technology enterprises, mastering technology, designing, renovating and producing in Vietnam, it would spur the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) growth by two to four times. The “Make in Vietnam” strategy will also turn Vietnam into a prosperous, developed and high-income country by 2045.
The belief is further strengthened by data showing that Vietnam currently ranks second in the world in manufacturing phones and components, and 10th in manufacturing electronics and components. These are also two of Vietnam’s 10 main export products, making the ICT industry the largest export and trade surplus sector of the economy.
In early 2020, the prime minister issued Instruction 01/CT-TTg on promoting the development of digital technology enterprises in Vietnam. By the end of the year, over 13,000 digital enterprises have been set up, a yearly increase of 28 percent, raising the total to more than 58,000 businesses. The target of 100,000 digital enterprises by 2030 appears feasible by 2025.
Notably, Vietnam has been able to rapidly develop digital products to contend with Covid-19 and adapt to a new normal, from Ncovi, Bluezone, CoMeet apps for contact tracing and online meetings to online learning platforms, remote medical consulting and remote accounting and business management platforms. “Perhaps Vietnam is the world leader in designing digital platforms during the Covid period. We would not have been able to do so had we not mastered these technologies,” Minister Nguyen Manh Hung said.
Make in Vietnam also helped Vietnamese technological enterprises master up to 90 percent of Vietnam’s cybersecurity product ecosystem in 2020. The powerful mission of cyber safety and security to protect Vietnam’s prosperity in cyberspace is also a focus of Make in Vietnam.
Another surprise of 2020 was that Vietnam became the fifth country in the world to master 5G technology, producing 5G infrastructure equipment and 5G phones. Very few people, both at home and abroad, believed Vietnam was equal to the task.
Fueling the Make in Vietnam fire
The prime minister issued the National Digital Transformation Program in June 2020. “The missions of Vietnam’s digital technology enterprises are to transform, build a digital Vietnam, and to convert Vietnam from the real world into the virtual world. This is a long journey of many decades. Therefore, Make in Vietnam needs a long-term vision and strategies in each phase,” said Minister Nguyen Manh Hung.
Commenting on the Make in Vietnam strategy, CMC Corporation Chair Nguyen Trung Chinh advised that Vietnam abandon its assembly production model of 20 years ago. “The only way to get out of this model is for manufacturing to be done by Vietnamese people and by companies in Vietnam. We need to do jobs with high technological productivity and high scientific and technological content, which is also the way out of the middle income trap. If we have the right strategy and path, we can go faster than other successful countries,” he said.
From the perspective of a technology enterprise that has been developing the brand of Vietnamese technology products for many years, Nguyen Tu Quang, CEO and Chair of Bkav Corporation commented that Vietnam has a great opportunity to achieve sci-tech based development. However, in order to realize the Make in Vietnam strategy, domestic sci-tech enterprises need a strong push from the government.
“Vietnam needs to eliminate the preconceived opinion that Vietnamese people cannot make products that can compete with those of the world’s leading countries. If Vietnam can change that preconception, its sci-tech industry is likely to boom over the next decade, and Vietnam may become a technology powerhouse in the next 15 years,” Nguyen Tu Quang said.
|Minister of Information and Communications Nguyen Manh Hung: The year 2021 is expected to see a strong development of Vietnam’s digital technology enterprises, with many Make in Vietnam products, which will help the country’s development while its spirit contributes to human development.|