Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Jay Y. Lee (left) talks with Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc after The South Korea-Vietnam Business Forum at Seoul on Nov. 28, 2019. [Photo provided by Yonhap]
Samsung Electronics Co. plans to explore more investment opportunities in Vietnam, where it turns out half of its smartphone output, Jay Y. Lee, vice chairman of Samsung Electronics Co. and de facto head of Samsung Group, told Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc in Seoul on Thursday.
“Samsung’s success is also Vietnam’s success,” said Nguyen as he requested Samsung to make Vietnam its “biggest strategic production base in the world in all business areas.”
He invited Samsung to establish a chip factory in Vietnam, promising to provide incentives when such investments are made.
Lee did not immediately respond to the proposal but shared details of Samsung Electronics’ $210 million plan to set up a research and development center in Vietnam. The Korean tech giant will hire about 3,000 locals to the lab opening in 2022 in Tay Ho Tay district in Hanoi focusing on smartphone and other ICT technologies.
The company hopes the upcoming R&D center in Vietnam would further cement the Southeast Asian country’s position as its core overseas manufacturing and research base.
Samsung Electronics and its affiliates currently have nearly 130,000 employees in Vietnam, producing from smartphones to home appliance. Samsung has invested $1.7 million in Vietnam and is responsible for a quarter of the Southeast Asian country’s total exports. Nearly half of its smartphones are assembled in Vietnam.
Under Lee’s helm, Samsung has been eager in global outreach. Lee met with crown prince of the United Arab Emirates in February and discussed cooperation in 5G wireless and other technologies. In June and October, he met with the crown prince of Saudi Arabia for expanding cooperation in the Middle Eastern country’s smart city project.
By Kim Gyu-sik, Hwang Soon-min, Lim Hyung-joon, and Cho Jeehyun
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