Nguyễn Việt Dũng, director of HCM City's Department of Science and Technology. — VNS Photo Gia Lộc
Nguyễn Việt Dũng, director of HCM City's Department of Science and Technology, talks to Việt Nam News reporter Gia Lộc about the development of start-ups in the country and HCM City.
What is your assessment of start-up development in the last five years?
The Government’s project on developing an ecosystem for innovative and creative start-ups and HCM City’s many policies to create favourable conditions for international co-operation for start-ups have led to effective and sustainable results. Many start-ups have developed high-quality, innovative solutions and new technologies for the global market, attracting many venture capitalists.
Last year, Vietnamese start-ups received US$900 million in investment, triple the amount in 2017 and six times against 2015. Start-ups in HCM City attracted more than $300 million last year.
This year, Việt Nam ranked 42nd on the 2019 Global Innovation Index (GII) out of 129 economies around the world and third in ASEAN, followed by Singapore and Malaysia. In international start-up contests, Vietnamese start-ups have won many prizes.
These are good signs for the start-up community in the country and HCM City. Young people have a good spirit and want to develop their own businesses. The country also wants to develop start-ups that have quality solutions and new technologies that can attract local and international capital.
In other countries, authorities pay attention to providing financial sources and human resources, including experts who help speed up the development of the ecosystem and develop a new generation of enterprises based on innovative technologies, which are the driving force for new economic development.
What difficulties are start-ups facing? What can the Government do to resolve these problems?
Start-ups cannot develop independently. They need an ecosystem for development. The ecosystem includes large enterprises which can lead the development of start-ups; small and medium-size enterprises, universities and research institutes which are very important; financial markets; and others. These are all indispensable components.
The Government’s policies should foster close connections and a “culture of sharing and co-operation” between these components in the ecosystem. This is very important in developing start-ups. The connections are stronger now than in the last three years, but they still need to be promoted further to become even stronger.
What is HCM City's Department of Science and Technology doing to help start-ups?
The department is waiting for the Government to issue stronger policies. However, the city can also create proper policies to meet demands of start-ups. The city, for example, last year issued policies on connecting start-up projects with foreign experts and financial markets, and helping start-ups take part in events to meet foreign investors. — VNS