Vietnam (1)

Recently, I have started to monitor Vietnam’s eGov activities and believe there is a lot of opportunities for startups who have the foresight to take advantage of what is happening.

To begin, let me define eGov and  GovTech.

GovTech is when startups sell to the government while eGov refers to the services the government provides over the Internet or through mobile apps.

I believe that Vietnamese startups have a lot of GovTech opportunities if they take a look at Vietnam’s movement into eGov and find opportunity.

I will try to explain what that means in this article while also providing updates on what took place over the month of July 2016.

Vietnamese Startups and eGov — Let the big fish handle GovTech

My theory is that Vietnamese startups can profit on eGov by letting the big companies — such as Microsoft and IBM — take the GovTech contracts.

Let these multinationals do the work required to create contacts within the Vietnamese Government and ‘work the system’.

Startups should monitor what happens and be ready to create disruptions when opportunities present.

In order to foster startup creativity, I present the following eight eGov developments over the month of July.

I hope that people interested in the Vietnamese economy will recognize that this is simply one month’s worth of activity. Things are progressing rapidly and the Vietnamese government is evermore coming online.

Also Read: Spotlight on Vietnam: Asia’s Next Dragon?

Startups that are paying attention, and have the foresight to see how to take advantage of these developments, will be able to profit dramatically.

My primary recommendation is that Vietnamese startups take advantage of second, third and fourth tier opportunities. That is, startups should not look at what is being sold to the government (GovTech) but what types of opportunities are being created by certain agencies (eGov).

Eight Vietnamese eGov Opportunities

Fish Exports

The website ‘Mekong Fish Market‘ provides sellers with utilities to help promote products, give price quotations and streamline the management of their sales staff.

Also, the website Pangasiusmap.com maintains a database and map of 200 tra fish breeding areas of businesses and households in Can Tho City and the provinces of Dong Thap, Vinh Long, An Giang and Ben Tre.

The launch of the websites opens new information channels for trade activities and provides an easy method to track the origins of seafood to ensure safety and transparency of the products.

Traceability

Ho Chi Minh City plans to launch a pilot programme on using technology to control and trace the origin of pork in an effort to ensure consumer health and benefits. The program will help pig breeders build brands and improve competitiveness, as well as provide better oversight over hygiene and food safety. Under the program, pigs at breeding farms will wear two leg rings with an electronic stamp, which will record information about feed and vaccinations and other data.

Consumers could check product information with their smartphones and scan the stamp, use devices set up at markets or access the program’s portal.

Government Procurement

Vietnam’s Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has approved the framework to implement the electronic government procurement system in a bid to enhance transparency and reduce costs in the procurement.

Muasamcong.mpi.gov.vn serves as the e-procurement platform. Via the portal, suppliers can get access to public procurement law and regulations, notices of invitations to tenders, guidelines to participate in a tender, and bidding results.

Vietnamese language training

The Ministry of Education and Training, authorized by the Government, is running a website to teach Vietnamese language to overseas Vietnamese called Tieng Viet Online.

The website aims to help overseas Vietnamese, particularly the young generation, gain sufficient knowledge about their mother tongue in order to nurture their love for the homeland and maintain national traditions and characteristics. Under the plan, Vietnamese language programs will be designed and provided online at six levels, meeting the criteria of being basic, effective and easy to access.

Paperless Administration

The Ho Chi Minh City administration has requested all of its subordinate departments, agencies, and offices cease issuing paper invitations for meetings and other events.

Beginning on July 20, all invitations should be delivered electronically, either through email or SMS, according to a fiat signed by the city’s deputy chairman. The requirement also applies to state companies run by the municipal administration.

Ministry Portal

On July 21, the Ministry of Defense’s Command of Border Guard officially launched its one-stop portal to link with the Vietnam National Single Window (VNSW).

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This is the fifth ministry to be linked with the VNSW by Viettel Group. The one-stop portal has been implemented since April 29 in seven seaports around the nation, including the northern province and city of Quang Ninh and Hai Phong; central cities of Quy Nhon, Nha Trang and Da Nang; and southern cities of Vung Tau and Ho Chi Minh City.

Digital Mapping

Smart traffic measures will be applied to digital maps for road transport along more than 20,000km of highway stretching across the country. It is part of a project proposed by the Directorate for Roads of Vietnam to the Ministry of Transport.

Under the project guidelines, transport experts will collect transport data to update a digital map. They will set up web and mobile applications to gather transport data, supervise vehicles’ itineraries, check traffic routes, control vehicles’ speed and provide guidance to vehicles to ensure they meet load capacity regulations.

Judicial Systems

The adoption of a one-door mechanism at civil judgement enforcement agencies must be expedited across the country to allow online applications for enforcement in the coming period.

The one-door judicial mechanism is expected to be a new online system that will update and link judicial information systems. Relevant ministries, agencies and individuals will share the same software system as a way to increase efficiency and transparency and to help reduce the need for citizens to travel.

Conclusion

These eight developments in Vietnamese eGov open the doors for new startup opportunities. Each provides startups with more data, transparency and customers interested in online services.

Also Read: Vietnam’s startup scene in one neat spreadsheet

By approaching eGov with open eyes, and looking for opportunities to create disruption, I truly believe Vietnamese startups can create explosive opportunities.

Photo courtesy of Unsplash.