Vietnamese digital technology enterprises are entering a new stage of development, going global, bringing their ‘Made-in-Vietnam’ products and services abroad, solving the problem of digital transformation, and developing the country’s digital economy.
According to the Authority of Information Technology and Communication Industry, the Vietnamese market of IT software and services is estimated at nearly 2 billion USD, accounting for about 0.1% of the world market.
Therefore, local firms’ opportunity to go global, earn foreign currencies, improve human resources, and expand cooperation in the field is huge.
Currently, Vietnamese technology enterprises have not only the strength of dynamic and creative human resources but also the ability to compete in price term in the global market. Vietnam’s IT workforce is approximately 1 million, of which about half are programmers and software engineers. Such abundant human resources are a necessary condition for developing internal strength.
In addition, the cost of information technology services in Vietnam is only between one-third and one-fourth of that in many developed countries. This coupled with the advantage of broadband infrastructure that has covered 99.73% of the country form advantages to bring Vietnamese technology and IT human resources abroad.
Despite these favourable conditions, conquering foreign markets remains a difficult and challenging task. Minister Hung expected the technology business community to work together for the building of a national brand.
Many Vietnamese enterprises have reached out to the world with remarkable success. The military-run telecom group Viettel’s overseas investment raked in nearly 3 billion USD for the first time in 2022. The technology firm FPT has provided IT and digital transformation services to such developed countries as the US and Japan and more than 20 other nations, earning over 1 billion USD in revenue last year.
Tao Duc Thang, Viettel Group Chairman and General Director, mentioned challenges that businesses will have to anticipate when going global such as differences in culture, language, political system, law, and even political instabilities in some potential markets.
When deciding to export technology and personnel, a tech firm must take into account the risks of exchange rate, foreign currency scarcity, inflation situation in its targeted markets, or legal dispute without the aid of investment protection and double-tax agreements in some nations.
According to a survey by the Vietnam Software and IT Services Association (VINASA), more than 62% of polled IT companies said they are providing services to foreign markets. Apart from 5% saying they have no plans to go abroad, the rest have already planned their overseas development within 3-5 years.
Nguyen Thien Nghia, Deputy Director of the Authority of Information Technology and Communication Industry, recommended the establishment of a consulting group to support Vietnamese businesses on their paths to go abroad.
He unveiled that the authority plans activities serving the national brand promotion for “Made in Vietnam” products and capacity improvement for Vietnamese digital technology enterprises. A portal to support Vietnamese companies in participating in overseas trade promotion programmes is also set to take shape, the official added.
Nghia noted that digital businesses seeking to reach out to the world market need to take advantage of such factors as trademarks and national brands. They should grasp market information and penetrate the culture of their target overseas markets, he said.