The Finland Vietnam Partnership is on the focus of the two countries. Next year marks the 45th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Finland and Vietnam. As Vietnam is one of the fastest growing economies in Asia, Finland seeks to focus on the strengthening of its commercial and economic relations with Vietnam.
Finnish government has many incentives and programmes to encourage and support Finnish companies to do business in Vietnam. For example, market entry research, partner matchmaking, financial support, etc. thorough organizations such as Tekes, Finnfund, Finpartnership, TeamFinland, etc. In addition, companies can also look for market and partnership information from embassies, profitable organizations and non-profitable organizations such as VSAF and BiziVietnam.
IPP – Innovation Partnership Programme Phase I
One of the remarkable programme that Finland supports Vietnam in developing its national innovation system is the Innovation Partnership Programme (IPP). It was launched in 2009. This is the first development programme between the Government of Finland and the Government of Vietnam in the science and technology sector.
The purpose of the IPP is to help Vietnam’s economic and social development as well as its public and private sector competence. Besides, IPP has also an important role in achieving a goal set in the Finland’s Development Policy Programme 2012. The goal is to decrease traditional grant-based bilateral development cooperation with Vietnam and give way to more comprehensive partnerships between the two countries. The funding for this programme is 10.000.000 EUR.
IPP – Innovation Partnership Programme Phase II
Based on the foundation of the IPP phase I, the IPP phase 2 will be in five years (2013–2018). IPP II aims to create an ‘innovation ecosystem’ that strengthens the expertise and competence of all multi helix stakeholders as well as the awareness of stakeholders about others’ roles. The targeted goals are:
- Strengthened institutional capacity of multi-helix stakeholders,
- Increased number of the partnerships between the stakeholders, and
- Innovative products and services created.
Highlight of IPP 2 is the VMAP programme. The VMAP kickoff meeting is happening during this week in Ho Chi Minh city. Under this programme, 18 Finnish companies have been selected. They are VMAP companies. IPP is organizing a business delegation for VMAP companies to visit Vietnam On 27th and 28th in conjunction with “Together with Finland” programme. There will be showcasing uniquely Finnish solutions to local partners and potential business prospect. Today, 27th October 2017, in Ho Chi Minh city, at this Business Match event, people will celebrate the 100 year old Finland.
Potentialities for both Finnish and Vietnamese companies
IPP is one of the last Official Development Assistance (ODA) programs Finland is funding in Vietnam. After that, the relationship between the countries will shift from assistance to partnerships; from traditional grant-based bilateral development cooperation to comprehensive partnerships.
There are more than 100 Finnish companies doing business in Vietnam in many sectors; for example, waste water treatment, building construction, wood, energy, IT outsourcing, packaging, etc. Moreover, healthcare and tourism are also potential areas.
This year, Minister of Education and Head of the Vietnam Tourism Administration paid visits to Finland. The trips were to to boost education and tourism cooperation. With the recent visit of the Vice President of Vietnam in Finland on 16-19 Oct, I believe there are more cooperation areas on the agenda.
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