Science/technology

Startup ecosystems wholeheartedly promoted in Vietnam

The project ‘Supporting national innovative startup ecosystems’ (Project 844) has achieved impressive results in becoming a strong foundation for the startup community nationwide and raising the public’s awareness about innovative startup activities in various fields.

There is a burning need for a perfect startup ecosystem to better support startup people. Photo by T.Ba

There is a burning need for a perfect startup ecosystem to better support startup people. Photo by T.Ba

Deputy Minister of Science and Technology Tran Van Tung shared that after 3 years running, Project 844 has aided more than 40 units in Vietnam in their own innovative startup activities. Compared to 2016, there is a significant growth in the number of startup consultation organizations, including a rise of 50 percent in the working space.

At the moment, in Vietnam, there are around 40 incubation centers for innovative startup activities, along with nearly 40 investment funds operating here. The amount of invested capital has stably increased since 2016. Last year, the raised capital reached $890 million, which was three times as much as the one in 2017.

In the near future, Project 844 will focus more on fostering programs for certain fields of technology while expanding the supporting network nationwide and worldwide in order to develop the market and attract necessary capital for any businesses in need.

According to experts, despite these encouraging results, the innovative startup ecosystems in Vietnam in general still encounter various obstacles of a typical ecosystem in its beginning stage as many mechanisms and policies on startup, or particularly innovative startup, are confusing, leading to difficulties in implementing in reality.

Ms. Nguyen Phi Van, Chairwoman of the angel investor network Angels City, stated that there exists a huge gap between Vietnamese mechanisms and those of nations with developing innovating startup ecosystems. She therefore suggested that via Project 844, the government should promote activities to attract foreign investors to directly pour their money into Vietnamese innovative startup people.

At the recent Forum for Vietnamese Innovative Startups 2019 in Hanoi, many foreign investors expressed their interest in Vietnam. Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam happily declared that this was the result of prolonged peace and stability as well as continuous impressive development rate of the nation. This also came from the endless innovation spirit to create new opportunities for all who wish to do business, to produce goods, and to prove their values to the society.

Yet to maintain this advantage, the Deputy Prime Minister said that Vietnam needed to improve its business environment nationally and internationally. He added it was essential to have crucial breakthroughs in implementing information technology in business as this would decide the future of commercial activities of both startup people as well as current companies.

He insisted that education and science development should never be neglected since the growth of science and technology is closely linked with the national innovation systems. Therefore, he clearly stated that enterprises were encouraged to focus more on scientific research and education while the government would adopt more practical economic policies regarding taxation, credit, land renting, market penetration.

Many experts also recommended that the management board of Project 844 need to cooperate with related state agencies to prepare feasible solutions for the government to launch more useful mechanisms and introduce more effective legal corridors to further foster national as well as international capital investment for innovative startup people. These should include piloting policies, tax preferences, community capital attraction, public purchasing mechanisms.

Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam shared that the public’s demands are a lucrative opportunity for startup people. He added that these groups should closely collaborate with one another and seek held from successful businesses.

He finally suggested that the whole society should encourage the startup spirit and foster innovative ideas, even some quite ‘crazy’ ones; and that Vietnam cheer for those who can inspire people to be creative, no matter how successful they are.

Deputy Minister of Science and Technology Tran Van Tung announced that there will soon be adjustments in current inadequate policies and mechanisms so that the national innovative startup ecosystems have a chance to sustainably develop.

By TRAN LUU – Translated by Thanh Tam

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