Employees of e-commerce firm NextTech Group. Technology-based firms and start-up businesses are in need of a sandbox so they can test new ideas before realising them in the market. (Photo courtesy of NextTech Group)

Hanoi (VNS/VNA)
— The legal framework on sandbox development will be submitted to the Government for approval in the third quarter of the year to foster new models of business and service.

A sandbox is a space where new financial technology products are developed and tested. When tested, any mistakes and errors may appear and they will be fixed at once to make sure the applications are of good quality for practical usage.

According to Minister of Information and Communications Nguyen Manh Hung, the world is transforming from a ‘real’ platform to a ‘virtual’ one focusing on dealing with new business relations.

The minister cited some examples such as the booking platform Triptour.vn and ride-hailing firm Grab, which do business based on technology and their operations have stirred public concern over whether they could be managed to assure market fairness and balance.

The debate among regulatory agencies about the role and responsibility of technology-based businesses had been going on for half a decade, Hung told a meeting this week.

Different views had pointed out that using a sandbox to resolve existing problems and help develop technology-based firms is the most appropriate idea, he said.

“The sandbox model should be applied within a fixed timeframe and space (the sectors where businesses can operate). It shouldn’t last too long,” Hung said.

Vietnam is targeting to become the top digital economy in the region by 2030, where new models of business and technology are freely tested for further development of the digital economy.

Digital transformation is a revolution in terms of policies as they play the key role in hastening the digital transformation process. However, laws and regulations cannot be changed soon, so the sandbox is a good way for businesses and government agencies to pilot their new ideas and the tests must relate to specific Government policies.

Chu Thi Hoa, deputy director of the Institute of Juridical Science under the Ministry of Justice, told a national workshop in late June that "enterprises have the right to do things that are not forbidden by law so they can seize opportunities at the right time".

Technology and computing group CMC’s chairman Nguyen Trung Chinh told ICTnews that technology was becoming more necessary and a number of economic sectors needed technological applications to improve their performance.

Due to a fast-changing digital world, legal policies often lagged behind technologies and practices, so it would be difficult to ask the Government to provide policies for something that is coming in the future, he said.

"But government agencies and companies can work and fix problems at the same time," Chinh said, adding it would be better to keep them going and fixing errors rather than waiting for the approval of new policies – which may cost companies valuable opportunities.-VNS/VNA