Vietnam is a potential market for internet banking services, as there is only 22 percent of its population that possesses bank accounts, said the Vietnam Business Forum Magazine (VBF).

According to statistics released by the State Bank of Vietnam, over 20 banks in Vietnam are offering services like paying electricity bill, telecommunication bill, taxes on behalf of enterprises and individuals so that they can save time and costs.

According to Vietnam Banks Association (VNBA), by the end of 2013, the number of internet-banking users increased 45 percent compared to that of 3 years ago. About 90 percent of banks are offering internet banking services and half of them are providing mobile banking service.

The number of enterprises paying through internet has sharply increased for the last years. Ho Chi Minh city branch of Vietnam Electricity (EVN Ho Chi Minh) has cooperated with 24 banks to develop the service of collecting electricity bills, raising the rate of paying through banks in 2013 to 44.9 percent of total revenues, up 12.8 times over the pilot year of 2007.

EVN plans to discount electricity bills for any person paying bills electronically 5 days before due time to encourage individuals and enterprises using the service.

At the beginning of 2014, General Department of Taxation informed that there were 366,000 enterprises declaring taxes via internet. They have cooperated with banks to offer service of paying taxes electronically to 15,000 enterprises by the end of this year.

Besides electricity and tax payments, many enterprises in other fields accept transactions through internet banking. Remarkably, there are projects of collecting and managing tuition through “SSC school card” and E-Banking service of Ho Chi Minh City Education and Training Department.

Seeing great potentials of the market, many large banks like Vietcombank, Techcombank, VPBank, ACB, Tienphongbank, etc have diversified their services. VPBank has concentrated on developing internet banking since 2009 and chosen it as their major business. The bank has completed a range of functions for “VPBank online” service, coordinated with enterprises in fields of electricity, water, insurances, aviation, consumption, etc. At the same time, it has also developed high class facilities like giving deposits online to enjoy attractive interest rates, collecting iCash to obtain gifts.

VPBank has also participated into a system of the first 9 banks to provide inter-bank super-express money transferring of Smartlink, helping customers transfer money intermediately 24/7 with high limit and at low costs. For enterprises alone, VPBank has signed with Vietnam Customs, Vietnam Treasury, and General Department of Taxation to implement services of collecting money for the State Budget, guaranteeing taxes for import – export goods electronically.-VNA