Honorary chairman of the HCM City Semi-conductor Association Dang Luong Mo spoke with the Government online newspaper about developing Viet Nam's chip manufacturing industry.
How is the chip industry significant to the country's scientific and economic development and national security and defence?
The chip industry is hi-tech, which implies a breakthrough development in science and technology with development research plans worth billions or tens of billions of US dollars. The industry's achievement will have a great impact on industrial development, economic growth and many sectors.
We could reduce dependence on the importing of chip semi-conductor components for the electronic industry, telecommunications and devices serving national security and defence if we develop our own chip industry.
Economies of countries such as Japan, Singapore and South Korea have developed rapidly and their science and education sectors experienced breakthroughs after developing the chip industry.
Which challenges will Viet Nam, a country with limited scientific and technological development, face in creating a chip industry?
We have many difficulties. However, many countries with scientific and technological development levels like Viet Nam have succeeded in developing the chip industry.
In fact, Viet Nam has many advantages, such as its potential domestic market, young labour force and education universalisation, creating conditions for developing human resources for the chip industry. More importantly, the country's stable society will serve as a basis for developing the chip industry and attracting foreign investment.
How do you assess HCM City's industrial development plan for chips for 2013-20?
The city's industrial development plan for chips during the 2013-20 period is well compiled, covers high-quality human resources training, design technology universalisation and chip applications to create specific products and construction of chip-manufacturing plants.
However, it still needs to be adjusted before being put into effect, particularly the construction of the chip-manufacturing plant. It is essential to have better preparation in choosing technology and partnerships in plant construction, training, development research and market exploitation.
Could the current labour force meet requirements of the chip-manufacturing plant when it is put into operation?
Human resources is the key factor in all industries, including the chip industry. Good human resources would help bring in good technology and good products. Good technology is the result of creative work by human beings.
We already have human resources for the chip industry but their focus is only on the design process. More training is needed to meet the future demand for human resources.
The HCM City's chip industry development plan also covers human resources training. Overseas Vietnamese people working in the chip industry in developed countries are also an abundant sources of human resources.
Will Viet Nam be able to compete in the chip industry?
All industrial sectors make contributions to exports and compete with other countries when they are developed.
The population of Japan in the 1970s, when it developed its chip industry, was equivalent to the current population of Viet Nam. South Korea's population in 1980s when it started to develop its chip industry was less than half of that of Viet Nam at present.
When developing a new industry, it is necessary to look at domestic demand for survival before looking at exports and growth.
What can Viet Nam learn from Japan's experiences?
From Japan's and South Korea's experiences in developing the chip industry, I think we should be well prepared. We need to answer questions about scale, technology, human resources and the market.
Vietnamese people are hard-working and studious and, with the national policy to build the chip industry with care from Japanese industrial circles, I believe the chip industry will be a success in Viet Nam.—VNS