|Choi Joo Ho, General Director of Samsung Vietnam
South Korea has been a leading investor in Việt Nam for many years, making a significant and influential contribution to Việt Nam's socio-economic development. Moreover, after 30 years of establishing diplomatic relations, Việt Nam and South Korea have both achieved important socio-economic achievements and become important partners of each other, especially in the field of economic cooperation.
Regarding South Korean investment in Việt Nam, we must mention Samsung's investment project with a total investment value of more than US$20 billion. This is also the largest foreign investor in Việt Nam. Samsung's increase in investment in Việt Nam demonstrates its commitment to a long-term and continuous investment strategy in the future, and the message does not change confidence in Việt Nam.
Choi Joo Ho, General Director of Samsung Vietnam, talks with Việt Nam News reporter Vũ Hoa about Samsung's investment plans and efforts to become a business that receives much love from the Vietnamese people.
In 2021, despite being affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, Samsung Vietnam recorded growth in both revenue and exports. Could you please share Samsung Vietnam's business results in 2022 so far?
Thanks to the comprehensive support from the Vietnamese Government and local authorities, Samsung Vietnam overcame the difficulties caused by the COVID-19 pandemic to achieve growth in 2021 with revenue of $74.2 billion, increasing 14 per cent compared to 2020 while export turnover reached $65.5 billion, posting 16 per cent year-on-year increase.
Following these successes, in the first half of 2022, Samsung Vietnam's total export turnover reached $34.3 billion, up about 18 per cent over the same period last year. In 2022, Samsung Vietnam aims to achieve an export turnover of $69 billion.
In addition, Samsung Vietnam has also continuously increased investment in Việt Nam. Specifically, this year, Samsung Vietnam plans to disburse additional investments, such as the $1.2 billion Samsung Electro-Mechanics Vietnam factory in the northern province of Thái Nguyên. As a result, by the end of 2021, the accumulated investment capital of Samsung in Việt Nam reached $18.2 billion. This figure is expected to exceed $20 billion by the end of 2022.
In particular, Samsung highly appreciates and thanks the efforts of the Vietnamese Government not only in pandemic prevention and socio-economic recovery and development but also in creating a favourable business environment for firms in the context that the world is in such a state of change today.
|An overview of Samsung Electronics Vietnam in the northern province of Bắc Ninh. Photo courtesy of the firm
Samsung will not change its investment strategy. Does this mean you will continue to increase capital into Việt Nam?
2022 is a special year as Việt Nam, and South Korea celebrate the 30th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the two countries. The relationship between the two countries has been continuously consolidated and developed. Because the relationship between the two countries is tighter than ever, Samsung will also have many plans for the future in Việt Nam.
We do not consider Việt Nam a mere trading partner but a reciprocal and complementary economic partner. Therefore, we are committed not to changing our beliefs about Việt Nam and our investment strategy.
Samsung commits to increasing investment in Việt Nam continuously. The proof is that after three years of the pandemic, Samsung has not only overcome difficulties but also increased investment in Việt Nam and demonstrated our social responsibility.
The construction of the new Samsung research and development (R&D) Centre is about to be completed. Could you please tell us the meaning and plan for operating Samsung's new R&D centre in Hà Nội?
Thanks to the comprehensive support from Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính, the Government and related agencies, after starting construction in March 2020, the construction process of Samsung's new R&D Centre has taken place safely without any accidents. We have completed 90 per cent of the work progress and will complete construction by the end of 2022.
The new R&D Centre will become an important research and development hub (R&D Hub) of not only Việt Nam but also Southeast Asia. In addition, this is also the place to undertake research not only in the field of product development but also in the fields of future technology research, such as artificial intelligence (AI) and 5G network. Especially to effectively operate this new centre, attracting excellent human resources is extremely important. In the coming time, Samsung will strengthen research and development activities, technology transfer and talent training through cooperation with universities throughout the country.
Could you tell us about Samsung's vision for corporate social responsibility activities in Việt Nam?
Samsung has always striven to share difficulties with Việt Nam to become the largest export enterprise in the country and become a business that receives the love of the Vietnamese people.
We are focusing on training Việt Nam's future generation of youth to achieve this target. Last month, we launched the Samsung Innovation Campus 2022-23 programme to provide students with core training courses related to software such as programming and artificial intelligence (AI) and the Internet of Things (IoT). In addition, we are running the Solve for Tomorrow contest to create a playground that encourages students to think creatively and apply STEM education knowledge related to science, technology, engineering algorithms and mathematics to find solutions to social or local problems. We always believe that in the future, Việt Nam's young talents - who both master technology and have a social responsibility - will be the ones to build the future of Việt Nam and lead the country's development.
In particular, Samsung built the Samsung Hope School in four countries. In addition, we are making efforts to give every child the opportunity to participate in extracurricular classes after regular school hours.
Samsung will always be with you for the hopeful future of Việt Nam.
Samsung Vietnam has achieved impressive results in terms of investment and business. But how does Samsung support Vietnamese businesses in developing their competitiveness in the supply chain?
Samsung hopes to support Vietnamese enterprises to increase their competitiveness according to global standards in all processes, such as research, and production, thereby supporting businesses to have more opportunities to participate in not only Samsung's supply chain but also the global supply network.
This comes from the perception that supplier competitiveness is directly related to Samsung's competitiveness. Therefore, if Vietnamese enterprises become Samsung's suppliers and have strong competitiveness, Samsung's competitiveness will also be enhanced.
In addition, to demonstrate social responsibility as an enterprise accompanying the Vietnamese Government, Samsung has always striven to contribute to increasing Việt Nam's national competitiveness.
As a result of those efforts, the total number of Samsung's suppliers that are Vietnamese enterprises, including both tier-1 and tier-2, has been 250 enterprises so far, of which tier-1 enterprises are 52. In the coming time, Samsung will constantly increase the number of these enterprises.
In addition, Samsung is implementing a project to support the development of smart factories for about 50 Vietnamese enterprises to increase their production capacity. Businesses will be supported in consulting and transferring experience in developing smart factory models, enhancing production capacity according to Samsung's global standards.
Samsung expects support from Việt Nam for Busan 2030 World Expo
Currently, South Korea is implementing the attraction of hosting the World Expo 2030 in Busan.
Through hosting the Busan 2030 World Expo, with the slogan "Transforming our world towards a better future", South Korea hopes to present a common vision to solve some challenges that the world is facing today, such as climate change, pandemics, technology differentiation etc.
In particular, this is also an opportunity for Samsung, as well as other South Korean and Vietnamese businesses, to have the opportunity to demonstrate high-tech made-in-Vietnam products, thereby contributing to promoting the image and strengthening the relationship between the two countries.
We hope Việt Nam will pay attention to and support this event.