Vietnam shows genuine interest in Blockchain technology

The Blockchain has been mentioned much lately in official media in Vietnam. Many conferences on Blockchain technology and their implementation in life have been held, attracting Vietnamese businesses, startups, and technology experts. The Vietnamese government also displays their keen interest in this promising technology.

Blockchain Forum on trends and development visions, held by the Ministry of Science and Technology. Photo by Nguyen Tuong

Blockchain Forum on trends and development visions, held by the Ministry of Science and Technology. Photo by Nguyen Tuong

A good beginning

The most prominent event related to Blockchain technology is the Blockchain Festival Vietnam, held in Ho Chi Minh City at the end of May 2018, attracted more than 1,500 people. It brought positive values to the startup ecosystem as well as the community in general by its ability to connect more than 30 speakers of the topic and blockchain developers as well as to deliver informative knowledge

On June 19 in Laos, Lina Group (Lina.review) – a Vietnamese startup – had the honor to sign a contract with the Laotian government on researching and implementing Digital Identity using Blockchain to absolutely control individual data flows and name while ensuring the confidentiality and authenticity of information via the experience of a simple electronic wallet.

Blockchain technology, with its own specifications, is considered to open a new potential implementation trend into many fields of finance and banking, retailing, freight shipping, manufacturing, telecommunications.

Blockchain is the technology allowing the safe transfer of data based on complicated cryptography. It enables data transmission without the need of any intermediary to confirm information. A blockchain system has many independent blocks, which cannot be edited and can only be modified with the consensus of all other blocks. This greatly enhances the cyber security to fight against data stealing.

Wide application in various fields

In Vietnam, there have been more than 20 startups related to blockchain, mostly developing applications for online payment, electronic wallet.

The latest report of TopDev shows that until December 2017, job seeking in the field of cryptocurrency – an application of blockchain technology – in Vietnam doubled this time in 2016. The average salary for a research analyst and a software architect specialized in blockchain is around EUR30,117 and EUR67,209 a year respectively. This has demonstrated a new promising trend in Vietnam

According to the Department of Payment under the State Bank of Vietnam, following many giant international banks like Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, BNY Mellon, JP Morgan Chase, HSBC to apply this technology in their operations, various domestic banks have begun preliminary research on the implementation of blockchain.

In the field of freight shipping, members of a blockchain system can easily track the route and arrival time of freight, which effectively serve the task of origin investigation.

“Blockchain allows the peer information sharing among blocks without the interference of a third party. All data becomes public ones after being electronically identified”, stated Mr. Vu Truong Ca, CEO of Lina Group.

 
A development policy from the government 

According to Mr. Nguyen Van Binh, Head of the Party Central Committee’s Economic Commission, having such a great potential, blockchain technology should be carefully monitored by the Vietnamese government with proper policies and laws to minimize risks.

He also insisted that among the key technologies of Industry 4.0, blockchain is an impressive breakthrough which is able to lead the revolution in the next few decades thanks to its wide implementation in many fields like finance and banking, retailing, freight shipping, telecommunications, and electronic government. Therefore, conferences and forums should be held to directly connect technology developers and businesses to apply them. These are supposed to collect suggestions to perfect a legal frame for blockchain technology, digital money, as well as digital property in the near future.

In the first formal forum on blockchain technology in Vietnam, international experts and speakers have confirmed the strengths and weaknesses of this new technology when sharing the experience of their own countries. Blockchain is both a marvelous opportunity and a tough challenge.

Mr. Do Van Long, Area Director of Infinity Blockchain Labs, said that Vietnam has missed many chances in Industry 4.0. Yet it now has a more open view on the technology.

In Vietnam, many people still mistakenly think that blockchain is Bitcoin, a cryptocurrency, making it hard to popularize this cutting edge technology. To correct this, Vietnam needs smart human resources with proper knowledge, trained by professional educational institutes. Meanwhile, policy makers should have more open mechanisms to attract investment.

Regarding the legal aspect, Mr. Dam Dinh Kha, Director of the Department of Information Technology under the Ministry of Information and Communications, shared that his ministry already had a plan to check related laws for a better approach to the technology.

The representative of the Department of Economic-Civil Legislation under the Ministry of Justice also displays four points related to law, which are encouraging the use and transaction of property based on blockchain; the government encouraging businesses to apply blockchain in operation; creating a safe and transparent legal frame to protect three partners; related ministries and agencies checking and eliminating any regulations that limit the development of blockchain.

Minister of Science and Technology Chu Ngoc Anh said that in the near future, his ministry will carry out activities to support the implementation of blockchain technology in various economic – social fields, including cooperating with other ministries to research and prepare a detailed route for the blockchain development.

The ministry will also propose suitable policies and regulations to monitor the technology in Vietnam while organizing national scientific and technological programs specifically for it, such as the national scientific and technological program about electronic government, about Industry 4.0.

In particular, there will be special support for any startups launching projects related to blockchain technology via the campaign ‘Supporting national innovative startup ecosystems until 2025’.

By GIA QUANG - BA TAN – Translated by Minh Trang

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