Vietnam’s National Strategy for foreign investment cooperation aims to spur innovation
03 August 2022
On June 2, 2022, Vietnam’s Deputy Prime Minister Pham Binh Minh signed Decision No. 667 which approves the National Strategy for foreign investment cooperation.
Covering the period 2021-2030, the National Strategy aims to improve Vietnam’s business landscape to attract more foreign and higher quality investments including those in high technology and digital sectors. It is targeting investments from leading investors like Japan, China, Taiwan, South Korea and Southeast Asian nations as well as those from the EU.
To achieve this, the strategy offers nine solutions, one of which is the development of an ecosystem of science, technology and innovation. In connection with this, the government of Vietnam aims to complete the legal framework on the establishment, protection and commercialization of intellectual property rights in scientific, technological and creative activities, among others.
“Foreign direct investments (FDI) into Vietnam have increased sharply and have become one of the important sources of capital for the economic development of Vietnam,” said Nguyen Tuan Hung, senior associate at Aliat Legal in Ho Chi Minh. “In fact, FDIs have more positive impact on Vietnam’s IP system than does its IP system on FDIs.”
Nguyen shared that in many cases, patents are licensed from parent companies to their affiliates in Vietnam. However, there have been a lot more foreign patent applications and licenses than local. “The proportion of patent applications filed by Vietnamese applicants was only 19% of the total number of patent applications filed in Vietnam,” he said.
Yet, Nguyen added that an efficient and effectively enforced IP infrastructure is indeed necessary to ensure the stimulation of investment in innovation.
“It is necessary to develop innovation ecosystems in industries, agriculture and services associated with domestic and global value chains, in which large enterprises act as a key role in leading innovation activities. State management agencies need to create a favourable institutional environment and policies so as to promote linkages between enterprises, research institutes, universities and organizations in research and innovation activities,” he said.
According to him, interaction between university, industry and government sectors provide optimal conditions for innovation. Meanwhile, IP rights have an essential role in teaching and research initiatives of universities and public research institutions.
“Universities and public research institutions produce results in the form of inventions. Many of these inventions are patentable, but are often no more than a proof of concept of a laboratory-scale prototype, which requires further R&D prior to possible commercialization. By granting universities and public research institutions the rights to their own IP derived from publicly funded research, and allowing them to commercialize their results, governments around the world are trying to accelerate the transformation of research-based inventions into industrial processes and products by strengthening collaborative ties among universities and industry,” explained Nguyen.
Espie Angelica A. de Leon