Jan 09, 2021 / 09:47

Innovation – a key for sustainable development: Vietnam Deputy Minister

The Hanoitimes - The Vietnam International Innovation Expo 2021 (VIIE 2021) held on January 9-10 is a major turning point and the result of a series of efforts by the Ministry of Planning and Investment in promoting innovation in Vietnam.

Deputy Minister of Planning and Investment Tran Duy Dong shared with Hanoitimes his views on Vietnam’s innovation on the occasion of the first international innovation exhibition in Vietnam (Vietnam International Innovation Expo 2021 - VIIE 2021) and the commencement of the National Innovation Center (NIC) held on January 9-10 at Hoa Lac Hi-Tech Park, Hanoi.

 Deputy Minister of Planning and Investment Tran Duy Dong

What do you expect from the upcoming events?

The VIIE 2021 and the commencement of the NIC are major turning points and the results of a series of efforts by the Ministry of Planning and Investment in promoting innovation in Vietnam.

This is the first international innovation exhibition in Vietnam, which converges a huge innovation ecosystem of Vietnam and the world, responding to the expectation of the Government when it decided to establish the NIC in early October last year. The VIIE 2021 emphasizes the important role of enterprises, especially domestic ones operating in technology development and foreign-invested businesses in the innovation ecosystem.

Considered as a “pioneer” in innovation, what actions has the Ministry of Planning and Investment taken to help adapt local businesses to the digital transformation?

2020 was a special year as Covid-19 left serious consequences not only for Vietnam but also other countries in the world. In this context, a number of local businesses have actively applied digital technology, innovative ideas and solutions to overcome the difficult period. The turning point in digital transformation has helped the businesses develop by taking advantage of opportunities and finding their own way.

From a regulatory perspective, the State builds a legal framework to support local businesses to make the best use of opportunities from the Fourth Industry Revolution, effectively implement digital transformation as well as raising fundings from domestic and foreign investors.

Taking local businesses as the focus of the Industry 4.0 development and innovation, the Government has issued the Action Program to implement Politbureau’s Resolution No. 52 dated September 27, 2019 on joining industry 4.0. For its part, the Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) has devised the digital transformation business program for the 2021-25 period,  which aims to make 100% of enterprises aware of digital transformation, at least 100 manufacturing and processing enterprises will successfully adopt digital transformation and then their experiences will be replicated on a larger scale. 

Besides, a network of at least 100 experts and agencies will also be established to provide digital consulting and services for the enterprises.

The MPI has also issued a plan to support small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) for the 2021-25 period, focusing on assisting Vietnamese enterprises to actively grasp new technologies and participate in the global value chain in a sustainable way.

In addition, the ministry also actively coordinates with relevant ministries and agencies to continue building legal framework and improve the investment environment for local businesses to participate in the field of innovation.

 The Vietnamese government supports policies to facilitate local businesses in innovation. Photo: VinSmart

It is said that some provisions of the legal framework become barriers to innovation, how will the MPI plan to modify the legal framework to meet the practical demand?

The action program to implement Resolution No. 52 clearly and specifically defines the tasks of each relevant ministry, branch and agency on devising mechanisms and policies to help local enterprises actively participate in Industry 4.0.

We are focusing on amending Decree No. 39 which puts into practice some articles of the Law on Support for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises to facilitate the businesses to access world-leading technologies as well as leading businesses and investment funds in the world. The Vietnamese SMEs have no shortage of innovative ideas with high applicability, so our mission is to facilitate these ideas to access the cheapest, fastest and most effective resources.

How will the legal framework become sufficiently and comprehensively accelerator of digital transformation and innovation process in Vietnam?

I think Vietnam should continue to improve the business investment environment. Building a comprehensive legal framework is instrumental to support local businesses in implementing digital transformation and innovation.  

Innovation comes from new initiatives and creative efforts for the community. Innovative thinking must be in every citizen, company or government to create a wave or culture of innovation. In this way, a new premise for the development of the country will be created.

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