Vietnam is rapidly becoming the destination of choice for tourists searching for exotic experiences and beautiful white sandy beaches. However, the country's assets extend far beyond nature. A commitment to high quality education and excellent student achievement, a welcoming and supportive environment for entrepreneurs and a government invested in improving the socio-economic standing of its citizens make Vietnam the perfect center for the region's burgeoning tech industry. All eyes are on Vietnam to become the Silicon Valley of the ASEAN Economic Community.
Vietnamese Students Impress International Hi-Tech Execs
For several years now, Vietnam has been consistently showing strong results in mathematics and science performance. In fact, in 2015 it came 22nd worldwide in Mathematics and 8th in Science according to the Program for International Student Assessment, ranking higher than the US, Australia and the U.K. A significant investment in teachers, training, and curriculum and long term vision and planning regarding the future of Vietnam and the welfare of its people have resulted in high achievements across the STEM spectrum, raising Vietnam’s visibility and desirability among hi-tech companies scouting out the world’s best talent.
A case in point is Google, whose executives were captivated by the impressive tech skills of students in Vietnam public schools. A visiting Google software engineer observed that students were performing complicated computer science exercises that would have challenged even incoming Google employees. CEO of Google, Sundar Pichai has expressed confidence that Vietnam will soon become one of Google's most important markets and among the top 10 countries for many other international hi-tech companies as well.
Tech Giants are Sowing Seeds For the Future
Google is doing more than giving out accolades. They are taking action and making their own financial investment in what they see as the company's future, initiating a program that will train 1,400 IT Vietnamese engineers. Also 500 Startups, a venture capitalist company based in Silicon Valley, announced that it will invest $10 million over the next year to nurture Vietnamese entrepreneurs.
All the ingredients are in place—government funding, foreign investment, a commitment to the highest educational standards and a budding entrepreneurial community—to help Vietnam realize its potential and become the headquarters of the region’s tech industry. The entrepreneurial future of Vietnam looks exciting, as does the effect of its flourishing tech-sector on the country itself and the ASEAN region.