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Microsoft, Viet Nam agree to develop IT

Microsoft, the world's leading software-maker, on April 27 signed a memorandum of understanding with Viet Nam's Corporation for Financing and Promoting Technology (FPT) aimed at developing the application of information technology in the Asia-Pacific region.

The agreement was an acknowledgement of the "outstanding development and performance of the IT industry in Viet Nam," said Truong Gia Binh, general director of FPT, the country's largest software and computer manufacturer.

Under the agreement, Microsoft and FPT will cooperate on the integration of the Lotus Notes software application into Microsoft applications in the Southeast Asia region, and provide IT solutions for Government offices in Viet Nam. The two firms will also work together on the development of IT infrastructure in Viet Nam across the region using Microsoft-based platforms, said FPT.

Microsoft will  assist its local partner in compiling the curricula for computer training programmes at FPT's newly-established university and at other training centres, and work on developing localised computer solutions for companies across the region, it said.

The two firms earlier this year agreed to establish a Microsoft Competency Centre, where Microsoft would help train local technicians to use its applications.

FPT last October became the nation's first Microsoft 'gold' partner, the company's highest level of corporate partnership.

The joint-stock firm last year posted earnings of 8.2 trillion VND (517 million USD), a year-on-year increase of 61 percent. Revenue from the sale of software accounted for 698 billion VND of the total, an 87 percent increase from 2004, while turnover from software exports accounted for another 135 billion VND, up 145 percent over the same period, it said.

According to the Ministry of Posts and Telematics, the total value of Viet Nam's software and IT-related services in 2005 was 170 million USD with annual growth projected at 40 percent. Exports were 45 million USD last year.

The country currently has 600 software development firms, which employ 15,000 people, mainly in HCM City and Ha Noi, compared with 170 firms and 5,000 workers in 1999.

Vietnam Agency - (28/04/2006)

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