An article by Kusto Group’s CFO Alex Donov published on Monday said new high-tech parks have been established in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh city and elsewhere, and the benefits of teaching computer science at school are beginning to bear fruit. For large electronics corporations who are already moving manufacturing from China to Vietnam, the ability to employ skilled staff may mean these big players make longer-term investments, the article noted. Smaller-scale entrepreneurial investors should focus their attentions on the increasing number of start-ups, particularly in online services and fintech.
Rather than directly competing with Singapore to be the regional tech hub, Vietnam can position itself as the alternative, with its population advantage and skilled workforce, Donov suggested. Infrastructure investment and eased business conditions will be decisive in ensuring Vietnam can fulfil this potential, and having already risen from 104th place in the World Bank’s Ease of doing Business Rankings in 2007 to 68th place in 2017, there is no reason to think the country cannot continue to develop a supportive environment for these crucial investments.
By developing their complementary specialisms and prioritising intra-ASEAN trade, ASEAN can capitalise on the region’s dynamism – which has already allowed certain members, like Vietnam, to become middle-income countries in record time. Having achieved this, Vietnam continues to be a great example of successful transition and development, where foreign investors are willing and ready to participate in the economy, Donov concluded.