The development of AI in Vietnam national digital transformation acceleration
Digital Strategy

The development of AI in Vietnam national digital transformation acceleration

Among digital technologies, AI is one of the cores with presences in many digital initiatives, providing the ability to explore the hidden values as well as replacing human to execute tasks quicker and smarter.

According to IDC’s report, in 2022 (2), 75% enterprise application will make use of AI functions to aid in decision making and business efficiency. Thus, the government needs to work with stakeholders such as research and education organizations, technology companies and businesses to create a nurturing environment for the growth of AI, bringing about competitive advantages for the nation and the economy. The 2025 – 2030 goals in the development strategy, Vietnam shall apply AI widely in public administrative and online services in order to reduce processing time, human resource, cost and waiting time of citizen.

AI development act as a critical factor in digital transformation of socio-economic aspects

The digital technologies including Big Data, Data Analytic, AI, Cloud, IoT, wireless,… are widely applied in the digital transformation process, making manufacturing more agile, automated and smartly controlled. In business, digital transformation also help enterprises to understand customer’s needs to optimize their supply chain and cater to those needs. Meanwhile, public services going online would make them more accessible, improving the standard of living. According to IMD (1), 90% of interviewed enterprises realized that digital transformation are creating critical changes in their operation. However, in Vietnam, the digital transformation process is still slow, in both private and public sector, limiting its ability to breakthrough. The lack of high tech and financial resources as well as the weak connection between research, enterprises and the government are the main barriers.

Vietnam’s national strategy on AI development

According to the Global AI Readiness Report 2021, in collaboration between Oxford Insights and International Development Research Centre (IDRC) (3)(1), Vietnam is currently ranked 62/172 globally and 10/15 in Asia.

Figure 1: Vietnam’s ranking on the global AI readiness index in the region in 2021

AI research and development acceleration activities

To realize those goals in national strategy on research, development and application of AI and support for the national digital transformation process, the government, research institutions, universities and enterprises need to work closely to accelerate the development of the following activities:

Focus on AI technology research

Currently, the human resources carrying on fundamental research and development of AI in Vietnam are still limited with approximately 300 experts working on this field (4). In order to enhance the research capability, the government, organizations and enterprises need to collaborate to establish R&D centers, research groups focusing on AI and data science within universities, research institutions and big tech companies to research on core technologies and build a common platform.

Build data and computing infrastructure

The infrastructure for data, computing and data quality are the key factors in the development of AI applications. However, Vietnam’s data and computing infrastructure are still primitive with limited, fragmented and low-quality data. The infrastructure and data index of Vietnam is relatively low compared to other nations with similar global AI readiness scoring. Thus, Vietnam needs a long-term plan to build, maintain and develop data infrastructure in order to approach and improve the efficiency and effectiveness of AI science and research system to help lower the repetition cost of collection, transferring and reusing data and scientific document.

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Digital Strategy 15/06/2024
Develop products and services that make use of AI

The research and development could only prove its effectiveness when the application of AI could help solving specific use cases in the digital transformation process of enterprises, digital government, digital society. Those would be the environment for training and improving research capabilities as well as providing financial resources to ensure sustainable growth.

Establish innovation centers in AI

To be the incubator of start-ups, to support the training on building strategy, product, management skill and connecting businesses with other organizations in the value chain, towards building an innovation ecosystem, spreading the influence to other economic sectors. For example, UAE has built their Dubai Silicon Oasis (DSO) to support and promote start-ups and R&D of the newest technologies (5).

Establish model areas for experience and application of AI

Develop high-tech towns, offices, and industrial parks as the model in the application of AI products and services in provinces to initiate a market for enterprises, contributing to the shift of socio-economic structure towards sustainable growth.

Train and connect AI resources domestically and globally

Create close connections between domestic and foreign organizations such as universities, research institutions, and tech companies to create AI specialized training and practical programs, form communities, and networks of experts to update on technology and attract AI talents.

The government has also enacted the National strategy on research, development and application of AI towards 2030 to promote the research, development and application of AI, making AI the critical technology area of Vietnam in the Industry Revolution 4.0 and Vietnam becoming the center for innovation, development of solutions and applications of AI for the ASEAN region and around the world. Vietnam will build 5 brands of AI and develop the national center for big data and high-performance cloud computing. The other goals are establishing two national AI innovation centers, increasing the number of innovative start-ups and total investment in AI, upgrade and establish 10 new research and training centers in AI to accelerate the wide application in public services and other online services in Vietnam.



Reference sources: 
(1) IMD. 2021 The digital vortex is accelerating, but companies don’t have a clear plan how to move forward
(2) IDC. IDC FutureScape: Worldwide Intelligent ERP 2020 Predictions
(3) Oxford Insights. Government AI Readiness Index 2021
(4) Vietnamnet. 2021 Vietnam only has 300 experts in artificial intelligence

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