Việt Nam internet economy embraces new opportunities from digital transformation

Thursday, Nov 23, 2023 08:18

A booth at Internet Day 2023 Conference - Exhibition. VNA/VNS Photo Minh Quyết

The digital transformation is creating unprecedented opportunities for Việt Nam to promote the development of the internet economy and drive socio-economic development, Deputy Minister of Information and Communications Phạm Đức Long said at the Internet Day 2023 Conference – Exhibition held on Wednesday in Hà Nội.

In contrast to the picture of a global economic recession leading to a wave of layoffs and cuts in ICT investment budgets, billions of dollars from the world’s technology giants such as Nvidia, Meta, SpaceX, Foxconn, Samsung, LG and Intel have been and are being prepared to be massively poured into Việt Nam, Chairman of Vietnam Internet Association (VIA) Vũ Hoàng Liên said.

“This is a golden opportunity for Vietnamese digital technology businesses to open up new growth space,” Liên said.

He cited statistics from the International Telecommunication Union that there were 5.4 billion Internet users around the world, or 67 per cent of the global population. Figures from Wearesocial showed that there were 77.93 million Internet users in Việt Nam, or 79.1 per cent of the country’s population.

A recent report by Google and Temasek found that the Vietnamese digital economy was developing rapidly and expected to reach $45 billion by 2025.

Forecasts are optimistic about the prospect of the Vietnamese Internet economy and e-commerce, he said.

In July 2023, the Ministry of Information and Communications identified five new areas that would have a scale equivalent to telecommunications by 2025 and even surpass telecommunications by 2030, including cloud computing, digital platforms, e-commerce, Make-in-Vietnam technology and cyber security.

These new spaces would provide new opportunities for digital technology and telecommunications businesses to capitalise on in the next decade, Liên said.

“Việt Nam needs new space to grow faster. The new space is the digital economy. The new space will require a new driver. The new driver is the digital economy,” Long said. “Digital transformation is providing unprecedented opportunity and motivation for the country’s socio-economic development, opening up a new era of development based on science, technology and innovation.”

Digital transformation is a must-do for Việt Nam to become a high-income country, Long said, adding that regardless of form, digital transformation must be based on the Internet and the Internet must be broader to meet development requirements.

With the large potential of an Internet economy, which was forecast to reach $49 billion by 2025, Việt Nam attracted the attention of a number of international investors, including those from the US, Germany, China, Japan, the Republic of Korea and Singapore, he said.

Long also pointed out the problems of Việt Nam, including the limited Internet infrastructure and ecosystem. However, looking positively, the shortage of infrastructure meant that there was significant room for growth.

Long said that the ministry was improving the legal framework and policies to create new drivers for innovation and development.

The amended Law on Telecommunications, which was going to be submitted to the National Assembly, would provide a framework for data centre services, cloud computing and telecommunications infrastructure development.

The information and communications infrastructure planning was expected to be approved within this year, which would provide orientations for Internet development by 2030 with a vision to 2050.

Besides, the ministry issued a plan to commercialise 5G in 2024. Việt Nam was also considering a plan to develop undersea fibre optic cable routes.

A programme on public telecommunications services by 2025 was approved to enable coverage of telecommunications services to remote areas to ensure that no one was left behind, he said.

Being an annual event held by VIA, Internet Day provides a platform to identify opportunities, challenges and solutions to promote the development of the Internet economy in Việt Nam.

At this year’s event themed “Internet Vietnam: New Spaces, New Opportunities", experts also discussed the application of AI, sustainable development strategy and digital connectivity, and the new-generation Internet.

The Report on Việt Nam Cloud Computing and Data Centres 2023 was also announced at the event.

Being showcased at the Internet Day exhibition were the latest technologies, such as metaverse, generative AI, distributed ledger technology, extended reality and quantum computing. — VNS

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