An integrated circuit development unit at the Vietnam National University in Ho Chi Minh City (Photo: VNA)

HCM City (VNA) – A seminar on the development of science and technology businesses was held in Ho Chi Minh City on November 25.

Addressing the event, Deputy Minister of Science and Technology Tran Van Tung highlighted the important role of sci-tech enterprises in the country’s development.

A number of policies have been issued and many activities have been deployed to support and develop sci-tech businesses, helping them gain a firm foothold in the home playground, he said.

By November 2015, 204 enterprises of this kind had been licensed, mainly in big cities and provinces such as Hai Phong, Quang Ninh, Hanoi, Thanh Hoa, HCM City and Binh Duong. Most of them boast stable performance with low rates of closure.

The volume of licensed corporations, however, falls short of their potential and advantages, Tung noted.

The application of scientific and technological advances in production not only improves the competitiveness of domestic goods but also stimulates research and development activities.

Tran Xuan Dich, Deputy Head of the National Agency for Technology Entrepreneurship and Commercialisation Development, pointed to barriers these firms are facing as they strive to grow.

For instance, despite being licensed, they still have to register for operating in the field. Other enterprises, working in IT and environmental sectors or investing in agriculture, still enjoy benefits from State policies so they have no appetite for registration.

Participants said turning research outcomes into commercial products has been hindered by lack of relevant standards and regulations.

As State management goes behind technological development, opportunities have been missed out, they said, stressing that a completed legal framework is essential for future expansion of sci-tech firms.

By 2020, Vietnam targets to have 5,000 licensed sci-tech enterprises. To be accredited as a sci-tech business, a firm needs to prove its legal ownership of technologies it is applying or transferring.-VNA