According to Nguyen Duc Thanh, Director of the Vietnam Institute for Economic and Policy Research, establishing a business is not difficult but retaining its operation for a long time is not simple. In addition to unique and innovative ideas, skills are also crucial to startups.
Thanh said that bad ideas and concepts account 10 per cent of businesses failures, while 90 per cent of a failure comes from the lack of knowledge and skills. It would cost startups a lot if they ignore this.
For the passing years, the number of startups in Vietnam has increased significantly. Last year, there were up to nearly 127,000 newly registered businesses. However, the number of those withdrawing from the economy was up to more than 60,000 enterprises.
Economic expert Pham Chi Lan said that currently, the level of technology development in Vietnam is still low and it must strive a lot by initiating policies about technology and education so that people can meet all requirements to work in the startup environment.
“Vietnam experienced strong economic growth; however, the structure of its economy still depends strongly on exploiting existing resources like cheap labor, natural resources without having strengths in technology, effectiveness, and labor productivity," said she.
Showing the same opinion with Lan, Thạn said that the policies should be included in the masterplan of the government to encourage the private sector, businesses, and creative startups.
Experts agree that there must be changes in financial support as the current supports of the governments are not concentrated.
According to economic expert Pham Chi Lan, in the current draft law for special administrative-economic zones, there are more peferential policies for enterprises operating in the areas of the casino and resort real estate than other enterprises in other areas.
This may create obstacles for startups to compete in attracting investment capital, for high tech to develop as well as for Vietnam’s economic structure to have any adjustment. However, Thanh said that enterprises themselves play the most important role.
“In the existing environment, the people who have their own ways and strengths would succeed. Startups should avoid the thinking of depending on preferential policies to develop,” Thanh affirmed.
Besides, the issues related to access to land and cost of rent are considered the obstacles for Vietnamese enterprises in general and Vietnamese startups in particular.
The renting prices are usually very high. In some cases, the renting agents even ask startups to return the land and copy their business when they have just got a little success. As a result, startups have to start over again.
Also, many startups operate in the fields that have the high competitiveness globally, in which Vietnam is much weaker.
Ph.D Le Dang Doanh, former President of the Central Institute for Economic Management (CIEM), said that Vietnam needs a robust change in terms of institutional mechanisms supporting creative startups. Otherwise, the “brain drain” could become a more serious problem. Currently, many Vietnamese youngsters have gone to Singapore to start their businesses and contribute to the development of Singapore.
Truong Dinh Tuyen, former Minister of Trade said that mechanism is the key for enterprises to get progress as it sets the limit for the business environment. He said that enterprises should be put in the competitive market.
“Vietnam must improve more in terms of mechanism and policies to support startups. The startup spirit of young people should be encouraged as it contributes significantly to the development of Vietnam’s economy,” said economic expert Pham Chi Lan.