Digitization could add 1.1 percent to Vietnam’s GDP growth

By Anh Minh   May 15, 2019 | 05:30 pm GMT+7
Digitization could add 1.1 percent to Vietnam’s GDP growth
Vietnam's digital economy currently grows at 25 percent a year. Photo by Shutterstock/Syda Productions
Digitization could contribute 1.1 percent GDP per year to Vietnam until 2045, experts say.

"Vietnam has a bright future in digital economy development," Dr. Lucy Cameron, senior research consultant at Australian federal scientific research agency CSIRO, said at a conference on the issue Wednesday.  

Cameron said that while Vietnam has been investing in production, manufacturing and assimilation of technology to boost traditional growth, breakthrough solutions needed sharper focus.

Vienam should foster growth in advanced technology and promote innovation to extract due value from digitization, she said.

In the best case scenario, if Vietnam fully implements digitization, GDP could rise by 1.1 percent, Cameron said. Vietnam’s GDP currently stands at $224 billion.

"Having a young workforce as well as being positioned in the high-growth Asia-Pacific region are Vietnam’s advantages for digitizing its economy. If Vietnam can manage change it well, it will be able to achieve its ambitions, attract technology and boost innovation," she said.

Ousmane Dione, country director of the World Bank in Vietnam, stressed that innovation and productivity-based growth was an urgent requirement for Vietnam.

The country has experienced remarkable growth in the last few years, but is still behind some countries in the Asia-Pacific region, he said, adding that Vietnam needs to conduct reforms in the fields of science, innovation and technology, in order to improve performance both in the private and public sectors.

Cameron recommended that Vietnam builds a unified platform to connect technological systems to take advantage of key strengths, focus on specialized areas, and provide increasing support for innovation.

Vietnam needs to participate in many regional forums, promote the growth of venture capital funds, and boost partnerships in technology and transfer of know-how, he said.

Two weeks ago, Data 61, an Australian data science research and engineering firm, projected that Vietnam could add $162 billion to its GDP in 20 years’ time by turning its economy digital.

However, Data 61 also warned that 38 percent of jobs could be lost to digitization. 

Google and Singaporean sovereign fund Temasek have estimated that Vietnam’s digital economy was worth $9 billion in 2018, and expected to reach $30 billion by 2025.

The digital economy has been booming in the last few years. It grew by over 25 percent last year and the country can sustain this rate for the next two or three years, according to the Vietnam E-Commerce Association.

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