Vietnam has least tech-friendly firms in region: insiders

Thanh Nien News

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Vietnamese businesses have invested little in technological renovations despite reporting some of the lowest productivity in the region, officials said at a recent conference.
Local firms have not considered the value of technology upgrades, said Duong Minh Tam, deputy head of the management board of Saigon Hi-Tech Park during the conference on technology and competitiveness. 
Vietnamese businesses invest roughly 0.2-0.3 percent of their income into technological renovations, far below the 5 percent invested in India or 10 percent in South Korea, Thoi bao Kinh Te Saigon (Saigon Times) reported.
Tam said only 10 percent of businesses nationwide keep up with technology, 38 percent maintain an average level of technological capacity while 52 percent remain outdated.
The reluctance has clearly hurt their productivity, which is 1.7 times lower than China, 3.6 times lower than Thailand and 39 times lower than Singapore, he said.
Tran Van Tung, vice minister of Science and Technology, said investors have focused on stock and real estate for a long time.
Now that the property market is frozen and the stock has nearly crashed, investors are having to change course, Tung said.
Vietnam has licensed 100 science and technology companies, who earn an average VND60 billion (US$2.85 million) each a year from manufacturing and trade of new science and technology inventions.
But experts at a conference, held by the Vietnam Science and Technology Association, said that is a humble number.
Ho Chi Minh City, the country’s economic hub with hundreds of thousands of businesses, has just 14 firms in the category.

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