January 24, 2021

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Ministry of Finance tops Vietnam’s IT application rankings

The Ministry of Finance remains at the top among government ministries in the rankings of information technology application in 2019, according to a report released in November.

The agency is followed by the Ministry of Industry and Trade and the Ministry of Information and Communications, unchanged from the year earlier. The rankings were based on six criteria, including information technology (IT) infrastructure, IT applications in internal operations, information portals, public service delivery, IT application policy, and IT personnel.

For provinces and centrally-governed cities, Thua Thien Hue swapped place with Da Nang to become the number one province in IT application, while Da Nang fell to the second position, with Quang Ninh Province in third.

A media report noted that several provinces such as Lang Son, An Giang, Bac Kan, and Bac Ninh recorded significant improvements in their standings, thanks to their major efforts in providing online public services. According to Nguyen Phu Tien, deputy director of the Authority of Information Technology Application (AITA), the scores of ministries and provincial authorities in 2019 all increased from the previous year. The average score of ministries was up by 0.13 to 0.82 and that of provinces and cities up by 0.07.

Data also showed the biggest improvements were seen in IT infrastructure, IT application in internal operations, and information portals, indicating that more attention had been given to investment in infrastructure and the rollout of applications-oriented towards promoting e-government.

The AITA has also announced a set of digital transformation criteria with three pillars, namely digital government, digital economy, and digital society, to evaluate the degree of digital transformation at ministries and provincial authorities.

Last month, five banks were honoured for their digital transformation efforts at the annual Vietnam Outstanding Banking Awards 2020, organised by the Vietnam Banking Association and IDG Vietnam.

BIDV, Sacombank, TPBank, Vietcombank, and VPBank received an award for their exceptional digitisation solutions over the past year.

In 2020 BIDV standardised its operations on the foundation of technology and develop digital banking services to promote cashless payment and increase coverage for customers without access to traditional banking services.

Sacombank provides its electronic banking services on multiple channels while TPBank is the first bank in Vietnam to roll out blockchain-based money transfer and an AI chatbot for round-the-clock customer service.

Earlier, Vietcombank completed the transformation of its core banking system as well as the upgrade of its servers and transmission infrastructure to prepare for bank-wide digital transformation. For its part, VPBank pioneered in working with fintech companies to expand its ecosystem.

At the awards ceremony, the organisers also honoured outstanding banks in various categories including retail banks, banks with innovative products and services, green credit, social responsibility, and support for high-tech agriculture. The awards for outstanding fintech companies went to Moca, Momo, Smartnet, and Trusting Social.

As part of its digital transformation journey, the country is promoting open platforms. Vietnam began approaching the open technology trend early in the 2000s, but it is still behind some countries, which is attributed to the closed culture, the localisation of data, and lack of interest from large corporations. Now, Vietnam ranks third in Southeast Asia and is among the top 20 in the world in open-source applications, after Singapore (17), and Malaysia (18).

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