Research and development (R&D) is the cornerstone of innovation and the driving force of economic growth in the digital age, experts said at the ASEAN – China smart industry conference in Ho Chi Minh City on July 25.
Speaking at the event, Director of the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry – Ho Chi Minh City branch Vo Tan Thanh said the fourth industrial revolution affords Vietnam a chance to use new technologies to step up industrialisation and modernisation.
In 2018, Vietnam was one of the five countries globally posting the fastest information technology growth with over 72 percent of population using smart phones and more than 68 percent exploiting the Internet. The country’s innovation was up 12 places from 2016.
The Vietnamese government pays attention to information and digital technology, industry, tourism, smart urban development, start-up ecological system, and workforce training.
According to Thanh, Vietnam faces challenges regarding the shortage of high-quality human resources, incomplete technical infrastructure and policies, and outdated technology. If fully tapping opportunities from global integration and Industry 4.0, Vietnam’s economic growth will be higher, generating 8 – 18 billion USD each year. VNA
Secretary General of ASEAN – China Centre Chen Dehai said China is strong in telecom technology, automation and artificial intelligence while ASEAN has huge demand for new technologies used in manufacturing, artificial intelligence, big data and smart urban development.
Matasuka Fujida, Secretary General of ASEAN – Japan Centre urged ASEAN member states to promptly fine-tune mechanisms and policies for R&D.
In ASEAN, Singapore and Malaysia spend most on R&D while Thailand and Malaysia record the highest number of workforce in the field.