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In the wake of global layoffs impacting the tech industry, Vietnam stands at a crucial point, facing both challenges and opportunities for its growing tech workforce. As the world contends with economic uncertainties, the Vietnamese tech sector has the chance to not only weather the storm but emerge as a global tech powerhouse. In this article, we delve into the government incentives and the outlook for Vietnam’s tech industry workforce, focusing on two critical aspects: attracting foreign direct investments (FDIs) and the imperative for continuous skill development.  

I. The current situation of the tech industry and how global economic conditions can impact Vietnam.

A.  Overview of current situation in the Vietnamese tech industry 

A Complex Situation in Vietnam 

During the COVID-19 pandemic, remote labor has helped large technology corporations “substantially”. However, several of these companies report poor 2023 growth. Technology company leaders say their rapid growth is unsustainable and that they are lowering costs due to the weak economy, and by lowering costs, they are laying off employees. 

While layoffs are difficult, they can also be an opportunity for industry professionals to grow professionally. So, it can be seen that the Vietnamese tech industry is in an awkward state. Due to its dedication to digital transformation, qualified workforce, and strategic position, the country has become a global hub for technology and digital firms. However, recent global IT layoffs, a drop in electronics sales and Chinese hardware shortages have hurt tech production and caused job losses in Vietnam. Workers face both possibilities and challenges from the layoffs, and the sector will need highly qualified and well-oriented HR for at least 10–20 years. 

A top IT expert said that as the business widely bloomed a few years ago, numerous schools rushed to train programmers in six months. He also thinks that instantly-trained programmers cannot thrive today. 

B. Impact of global economic conditions and tech layoffs and economic on Vietnam  

Microsoft and Google laid off 10,000 and 12,000 people globally in 2023. IBM fired roughly 4,000 workers, while Spotify fired 6%. Amazon and HP have changed thousands of jobs since November. Meanwhile, Meta, Facebook’s parent company, fired off 11,000 workers.  

Other Asian IT companies are influenced by similar tendency. GoTo Group (Indonesia), Carousell, Foodpanda (Singapore), Kakao, and Naver (Korea) all laid off workers recently. 

According to, which tracks layoffs in the tech industry, more than 250,000 workers in tech lost their jobs since the beginning of 2023, with over 1,169 companies laying off workers. In this economic climate and the rise of AI, layoffs are inevitable.  

Recent global IT layoffs have hurt tech production and job losses in Vietnam. According to the nation’s top IT recruitment portal, 90% of organizations aim to hire 75% fewer people than last year. 79% of organizations slashed recruitment expenses in 2023, while only 6% invested in new hiring practices. Tech product development and investment have slowed in the weakening market. Some Vietnamese outsourcing firms cut payroll by 90%. Overall, IT revenues fell 9% in the first half of this year. 

Despite these obstacles, the local technology recruitment market is competitive and lacking in quality talent. The industry is projected to continue layoffs, which bring both possibilities and challenges for workers.  

II. Government plan to support the “Layoffs” wave 

According to the Vietnam’s Ministry of Justice, one of the most important policies is to innovate the unemployment insurance policy by enhancing labor training and retraining.  

Vietnam has an unstable, inadequate, and inefficient labor market. The government is focusing on all industries to mitigate layoffs, not just IT. The administration has taken steps to reduce layoffs nationwide.  

The Vietnam Ministry of Justice considers improving workforce training and retraining to reinvent the unemployment insurance policy a top priority.  

Expanding policy coverage and eligible participants 

Unemployment insurance enrollment rose from 5,99 million in 2009 to 13,32 million in 2020. This shows that companies and employees value this policy and are more ready to join.  

Regarding unemployment benefits 

In 2020, 1.12 million workers applied for unemployment benefits, up 32% from 2019. In 2020, unemployment benefits reached 17,898 billion VND, up 49% over 2019. The 2020 COVID-19 pandemic hampered manufacturing and business, costing many workers their jobs and income. During the pandemic, unemployment insurance stabilises workers’ and their families’ income, promoting order and social stability.

Regarding job consulting 

Vietnamese workers received free employment consulting and were introduced to suitable jobs. Consultations increased 20-fold in 2020 compared to 2010.  

Also, the Vietnamese government also prioritizes apprenticeship training and ensuring that labor market participants acquire quality education to improve their skills and knowledge to support their jobs. This would also improve workplaces by allowing businesses to retain better learners. 

In June 2023, 23,000 billion VND was proposed to support unemployed workers. This suggests that the Vietnamese government takes special care of unemployed workers to mitigate the effects of layoffs. 

III. Prospects for the Vietnamese Tech Industry workforce  

Attracting Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs) in the Tech Industry: 

In a joint effort on September 7, 2023, the Ministry of Science and Technology collaborated with the Ministry of Planning and Investment to host a seminal “Attracting Foreign Investment in High Technology“.  This conference encapsulated Vietnam’s journey in foreign investment attraction, with a particular focus on high technology and technology transfer. 

Recent years have witnessed a proactive approach by the Vietnamese government, exemplified through party regulations and state policies aimed at enhancing the efficiency and comprehensive quality of foreign investment utilisation. Key policies contributing to this strategic initiative include: 

  • Resolution No. 50-NQ/TW 
  • The 2017 Law on Technology Transfer 
  • The 2020 Investment Law 
  • Decision No. 29/2021/QD-TTg 

In an eight month period of 2023, Vietnam achieved considerable success in attracting foreign investment, with 1,924 new projects,amassing a total registered capital of nearly USD 18.15 billion. Notably, high-tech sectors, such as those involving Intel and Samsung, have seen substantial inflows of new investment, propelling the domestic market into rapid expansion. 

This surge in foreign investment underscores the need for robust policies and mechanisms facilitating collaboration between domestic and international businesses. Domestic enterprises must adopt a proactive stance in seeking technology transfer channels, utilising contracts for the acquisition of inventions, copyrights, franchise rights, and engaging in research cooperation with domestic agencies and organisations.  

Continuous Skill Development in the Face of Layoffs: 

To stay competitive globally, Vietnam’s tech workforce must attract investment and prioritise ongoing skill development. The demand for skilled microchip workers in Vietnam is rising, with the need for engineers increasing from 350 in 2021 to a projected 500 in 2023, according to the Vietnam Microchip Community management group. 

Intel Products Vietnam’s General Director, Kim Huat Ooi, highlighted the abundance of bachelor’s degree holders but noted a scarcity of higher qualifications like master’s or doctorate degrees, posing a challenge for the research and development sector. Despite this, Intel sees it as an opportunity due to Vietnam’s large population. 

During President Biden’s visit, FPT Group’s Chairman, Truong Gia Binh, proposed that the U.S. government invest in training 30,000 to 50,000 semiconductor experts for Vietnam. FPT envisions Vietnam as a semiconductor ecosystem and seeks U.S. government encouragement for investment from major corporations like Boeing, AT&T, Qualcomm, Intel, and Ford. Binh emphasised FPT’s desire for favourable legal conditions and commitments from the Vietnamese government to facilitate the training of 30,000 to 50,000 semiconductor professionals. Additionally, he hopes for investment in FPT University to enhance workforce capabilities in chip design and artificial intelligence. 

Final thoughts  

In the face of global tech industry layoffs, Vietnam confronts challenges and opportunities in its tech workforce. The government’s active measures include supporting affected industries and workers, recognizing the need for ongoing skill development.

As the tech sector grapples with a decline in global electronics sales, the government seeks foreign direct investments (FDIs) for sustainable growth. Recent successes with industry giants like Intel and Samsung underscore effective policies, necessitating continued collaboration between domestic and international businesses. 

Despite layoffs, there’s a strong emphasis on continuous skill development, especially in microchip design. The government’s commitment aligns with strategies for fostering skills, including training programs and global partnerships. Looking forward, Vietnam’s tech industry, with its resilient approach and focus on growth, is poised for a dynamic future amidst global challenges.