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World Bank to support Vietnamese SMEs in digital transformation
Anh Kiet 21:21, 2021/07/23
The project is expected to help Vietnamese SMEs increase their productivity and competitiveness.

The World Bank (WB) will support 600 Vietnamese small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the application of technological solutions to improve labor productivity and competitiveness.

This is a key part of a project launched by the WB in partnership with Real-Time Analytics (RTA) to provide two digital transformation assistance packages for the SMEs under its remit. These enterprises will be given free training on using copyrighted software and organizing their resources.

Under the project, the WB and its partners will also focus on several areas, one of which is assessing the health of enterprises to identify issues undermining their productivity and competitiveness.

Shawn Tan, a WB senior expert, said the project focused on supplying a set of enterprise resource planning, allowing businesses to collect, store, manage and interpret administrative data from its operation.

Shawn Tan, a WB senior expert, addresses the virtual launching ceremony for the project. Photo: Nguyen Ngan

He added that when businesses adopt these tools, they can improve communication and coordination among employees, as well as have more efficient administrative and business planning processes, thus better serve customers, increase labor productivity, sales and profits.

In addition to providing knowledge on digital transformation, the project will also provide financial assistance for SMEs to apply technological solutions on sales and customer management, personnel management, and internal communication, Shawn Tan noted.

WB will provide two digital transformation funding packages for Vietnamese SMEs, namely Digital Express and Digital Prime.

The Digital Express package will cover the finance of all corporate employees who register to use it, within 12 months from August 2021 to July 2022. Some 300 small and medium enterprises will be selected for this package.

The Digital Prime package will finance 20% to 100% of registered business employees. It will be effective for 12 months, starting from August 2022 to July 2023 and about 300 businesses will be chosen for the package.

 Le Dang Trung, director of RTA company, speaks at the event. Photo: Nguyen Ngan

For his part, Le Dang Trung, director of RTA company, said SMEs are the largest part of the business community in particular and the economy in general.

“SMEs always face difficulties because they do not have many resources and lack capacity in terms of management and technology, thus, lowering their competitiveness. Therefore, the WB and RTA want to create a digital transformation program for SMEs to improve the operational efficiency, without spending resources or investment costs,” Trung said.

Tran Thu Trang, a WB senior economist, said that WB's support program aims to remove the barriers facing the businesses when applying digital technology, including financial difficulties, knowledge about technology, the internal capacity of enterprises to apply digital technology.

"To remove these barriers, we focus on four contents, including assessing the health of businesses to identify problems that cause a decrease in their performance and competitiveness; raising awareness of digital transformation and digital transformation strategies; applying technology solutions to help businesses digitize their operations, and measuring the effectiveness of digital transformation application," Trang stressed.

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