Vietnam’s future is becoming increasingly bright; it is a sentiment shared by its people. Pew Research Center found some 88 percent of Vietnamese people polled believe the country is better off than fifty years before. There is a growing sense of pride and desire to continue the momentum of success by all of its citizens – even those who fled nearly forty-five years ago.
Hundreds of thousands of overseas Vietnamese who are returning home, armed with a foreign education and the skills they want to bring to bear to help their homeland fulfill its potential. They are the children of those who fled after 1975. As a country, that is now full of global citizens who are loyal to their home, Vietnam has learned some critical lessons prepare itself for continued prosperity. The following are examples of how Vietnam and its foreign-educated and -experienced people are creating an optimistic future of success:
- Building and sustaining local business is important. A truly vibrant economy requires laws that empower individuals and not just state-owned enterprises. The government understands the state-owned sector has not and will not be able to create the millions of jobs Vietnam needs each year to make sure its demographic explosion remains an asset, not a liability. Many more Vietnamese entrepreneurs are encouraged to operate and has a result, the country has an increasingly vibrant private sector.
- Embracing its role in the global supply chain is beneficial. As China has moved up the value curve, Vietnam has taken its place in the manufacturing sector. It now forms a key part of the global electronics supply chain, for example. One company, South Korea’s Samsung, generated revenues of $46.3 billion from Vietnam in 2016, accounting for 20 percent of Vietnam’s exports. As business leaders understand and recognize the opportunities available within the global supply chain, Vietnam’s value to other economies will continue to increase.
- Tolerance and global engagement invite increased opportunities. Vietnam is a very outward-facing country and has eighteen free-trade agreements in place, or under discussion, with other countries. That might seem strange in the context of a long history of repelling invaders. But endless conflict has made us value tolerance even more. Vietnam’s history means that we pride ourselves on our friendliness and understanding, because we know these traits help to keep the peace. In addition, with so many of its citizens being globally educated, relationships and networks have been extended far beyond the boundaries of Vietnam. Those connections are extremely beneficial for its future.
Vietnam’s future will continue to rely on the strength and ambition of its people – many of whom have broadened their horizons through experiences across the world. My father has a personal proverb about the importance of growth, saying: “Great success comes to those who set sail for the sea…No success comes to those who stay moored in the river.” We will continue to welcome back those who have set sail, learned much, and return to share that knowledge with their country.
Learn more about Vietnam’s promising future in the following blogs: Vietnam’s Entrance into Modern Business | Lessons Learned from Working in Vietnam | How Vietnam’s Economy Went from Poverty to Prosperity