The move has seen Naver Group partner with Hanoi University of Science and Technology (HUST), one of the leading Vietnamese institutions to launch country’s first artificial intelligence (AI) research centre in Hanoi capital.
The new facility is set to play a major role in Hanoi's goal of nurturing the local high-tech sector and pushing ahead with plans to become an AI research and development leader by 2030.
For Naver, the partnership with the Vietnamese university is part of a wider international network for AI R&D. The RoK search engine leader initially launched its Global AI R&D Belt initiative back in 2019 with the goal of looking to connect software engineers and facilities in the Republic of Korea (RoK), Japan, the EU, and Vietnam.
Last August saw Naver officially sign a co-operation agreement with the country’s Posts and Telecommunications Institute of Technology on investment, development, and training of domestic AI.
"The new centre is expected to become one of the key facilities of the AI industry in Vietnam, contributing to the development of the country," said Ho Tu Bao, the centre's director, in comments made to Nikkei Asia.
Naver's deal signals the RoK firm’s next wave of local investment, with a specific focus on AI. The initial round of investment led by Samsung Electronics has turned the country into a suitable base for smartphone assembly. Indeed, Samsung now operates two huge smartphone factories locally and produces half of its global output in Vietnam.
Samsung has invested over US$17.3 billion in the country, according to figures compiled by the Vietnam Industrial Agency under the Ministry of Industry and Trade.
Due to this investment, Vietnam has seen an increase in projects involving RoK companies as the Government's AI strategy has served to attract additional domestic companies and foreign investors.
FPT Group, a Vietnamese information technology group, has also signed a memorandum of understanding with Hancom group of the RoK to co-operate in AI development.
Elsewhere, VinAI Research, part of the country’s top conglomerate Vingroup, said that last year it had deployed the world's most advanced AI system, Nvidia DGX A100, and that it will soon announce more co-operation with chipmaker Nvidia of the United States on future AI projects.
The Vietnamese AI strategy is anticipated to play a major part in the national economic goals for 2030 which were set out by the Communist Party Congress in January. The Government aims to develop reputable AI brands or services by 2030.