Việt Nam strives to become an innovation hub in Southeast Asia


VIETNAM, February 8 –

Illustrative image (Source: Photo: Genetica)

HÀ NỘI — The COVID-19 pandemic, which has affected all aspects of society, has not dampened the spirit of start-up and innovation but, on the contrary, created a major influence, contributing to the development and the economic recovery, according to insiders.

The booming startup and innovation environment in Vietnam is attributable to the efforts of the government and relevant ministries, sectors and communication agencies, especially the Vietnam National Innovation Center (NIC) under the Ministry of Planning and Investment, they said.

In an interview with Vietnam News Agency (VNA), Nguyễn Thị Ngọc Dung, a representative of NIC, said domestic companies are aware of innovation, especially after the fight against the pandemic.

The center has brought together more than 1,000 Vietnamese experts who work in renowned universities and research institutes around the world, and connected nearly 100 venture capital funds around the world with startups in the innovation ecosystem. local.

Dung took Genetica, an American medical technology startup that primarily provides its services in Southeast Asia, as an example. The firm announced in October 2021 that it would develop the largest gene sequencing center in the region, located at the NIC, with an annual capacity of 500,000 genomes.

Genetica’s founders are graduates of top US universities, said Dung, who worked hard to persuade the company to move its Southeast Asia headquarters to Việt Nam.

Cao Anh Tuấn, co-founder and CEO of Genetica, said his company initially chose Singapore to open the center, but then chose Việt Nam instead after his first meeting in the United States with the Minister of Planning. and the Nguyễn Chí Dũng Investment who assured him that the Vietnamese government would create the best possible conditions for scientists returning from the United States.

The Genetica Center in the NIC building is designed to the standards of US-based laboratories, the most rigorous in the world for genetic testing. As a result, Việt Nam will be one of the few countries in Southeast Asia to have standard CAP (College of American Pathologists) and CLIA (Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments) genetic testing laboratories.

Most importantly, Genetica’s genetic sequencing results are accepted worldwide, allowing users to decode once and apply for a lifetime.

Last year, Việt Nam ranked 44th on the Global Innovation Index. The country’s startup ecosystem also claimed the 59th position out of 100 countries. Việt Nam was ranked third by international organizations in the group of three fastest growing innovative startup ecosystems in Southeast Asia, only after Indonesia and Singapore.

Dung suggested shifts in policy-making mindset and adaptation of new business models and technologies, as innovation and start-up are meant to create breakthroughs that can influence society.

Tuấn also emphasized three factors to the development, innovation and creation of startups, namely human resources, connectivity with mentors and partnerships with support networks (peer coaching).

Despite these encouraging results, Việt Nam’s innovation environment still needs to be consolidated, according to experts. Stakeholder cooperation will continue to create opportunities for domestic businesses to connect, utilize and enhance their financial strength, improve knowledge and human resources, and create products, services and platforms. useful development for the community. —VNS


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