During a visit to the Samsung factory in the northern province of Thai Nguyen, the corporation and the prime minister exchanged promises to foster each other’s growth on the long-term.
Yesterday afternoon (September 3), Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh visited Thai Nguyen province, including Samsung Electronics Vietnam Thai Nguyen.
Samsung CEO Choi Joo Ho said that their factory had already overcome all challenges of the COVID-19 outbreak in Bac Ninh and Bac Giang provinces, adding that the Thai Nguyen factory was absolutely safe without a single COVID-19 patient.
Samsung reported 10 per cent growth on-year in revenue in the first seven months and expects to exceed its export targets this year if its plants in Ho Chi Minh City can resume production soon, the CEO said.
Thus, the corporation requested the PM and the government to accelerate the vaccination of their employees. Earlier, the South Korean electronics giant donated VND86 billion($3.74 million) for the fight against the pandemic in Vietnam.
The PM said that although the fight against the pandemic in Ho Chi Minh City is more difficult than in Bac Ninh and Bac Giang, “Vietnam will not fail the trust Samsung and other foreign companies put in its ability to combat COVID-19.”
He called Samsung’s request “reasonable” and the government is administering shots to locals for free with priority given to workers, including those of Samsung. The government is also prioritising vaccination in COVID-19 hotspots like Ho Chi Minh City and southern localities, where Samsung has factories.
Due to the global shortage of vaccines, Vietnam needs the South Korean government’s support while pushing ahead with the research and production of vaccines.
Based on mutual benefits, he called on Samsung to increase its sourcing of parts, equipment, and materials made in Vietnam to replace imported products by transferring technology to Vietnamese partners. Currently, only 40 per cent of the value of Samsung products is generated in Vietnam.
“This number should be over 50 per cent to harmonise the interests of the two sides,” The PM said, expressing hope to soon see Vietnamese people in top leadership positions at the Samsung complex and factories, and suggested Samsung to introduce a training strategy for this.
CEO Choi Joo Ho said Samsung would pay attention to the PM’s requests, including having more Vietnamese in senior management positions. He added that the corporation is working on helping Vietnamese companies add more value to products they supply to his company. Human resources training is part of Samsung’s business philosophy, and it would continue to focus on this as the PM suggested, he said.
The biggest foreign investor in Vietnam, Samsung has six plants and is building a new research and development centre in Hanoi, which will open at the end of 2022. Around 3,000 Vietnamese engineers are set to be employed there.
The South Korean company has already invested over $17.7 billion in Vietnam and employs 110,000 people. It exported more than $56 billion worth of products from Vietnam last year.