VietNamNet Bridge – On the occasion of attending the APEC CEO Summit in Vietnam, Craig Mundie, General Director on Strategy and Technology of Microsoft talked with the press at the signing ceremony of the Microsoft – FPT strategic alliance agreement last
VietNamNet: Besides FPT, does Microsoft plans to cooperate with other universities of Vietnam in developing hi-tech human resources?
I hope in the future Microsoft will build relationships with other universities in Vietnam. Human resource training is one of the keys to develop the economy, including the software industry.
This morning, during the meeting with President Nguyen Minh Triet, we exchanged and hoped that in the future, Microsoft will have many more opportunities to cooperate with the Vietnamese Government in education and training at various levels, from the low to higher education, particularly in training technical human resources. We will also assist Vietnam to implement IT in training at rural and remote areas.
We will not only help Vietnam in education but also in health. I think these are the directions of cooperation that we can further expand besides normal technology transfer and commercial cooperation.
Vietnam Post: Why does the strategic agreement between Microsoft and FPT only last for three years? Is that the time for Microsoft to test the capability of FPT?
We have had ten years of cooperation with FPT and that period of time has clearly proved the capability of this partner. In the coming time, the newly signed agreement is only focused on the issues of concerns of the both sides. So we will only carry out that defined plan it for three years. After that the two sides will reconsider and discuss following cooperation plans.
With the development of FPT, those three years can help us see more clearly the development of technology that FPT implements. The biggest hindrance of Microsoft and FPT is that the contingent of human resources is incapable to receive new technologies. The solution for this obstacle is training the human resources to enable them to receive modern technologies.
Banking Times: As an expert on technology development and strategy of Microsoft, do you have any advice for the IT development process of Vietnam?
I know Vietnam and some other countries in this region are in the process of development, from the production economy to the service economy and the knowledge-based economy in the future. To become a knowledge-based economy, the IT and media infrastructure of Vietnam must have great changes.
Education would be an extremely significant issue that Vietnam needs to pay attention to, particularly training hi-tech human resources.
Under the WTO commitments, Vietnam will have to open its education market in 2009 to let international universities participate in the Vietnamese education sector. And I think the Vietnamese government is aware of this and has prepared for that challenge.
When Vietnam develops E-government, E-banking, adventure investors and financial groups will flock to Vietnam in the upcoming period of economic development. That’s why Vietnam needs to create a larger market and the foundation for that market is information and communication technology.
To develop the knowledge-based economy, the Vietnamese government needs to take measures to protect the intellectual property to ensure the interests of both the authors of intellectual products and the users.
VietNamNet: we know that a planed agreement between Microsoft and the Vietnamese government couldn’t be signed on the occasion of the 14th APEC summit. Could you reveal your main goal in this visit to Vietnam?
In his speech delivered a moment ago, Mr Bui Manh Hai (Deputy Minister of Science and Technology) mentioned that the Vietnamese government would attach importance to intellectual property protection. Like other countries, one of the first steps to realize the Intellectual Property rights is that the Vietnamese government needs to enforce respect of copyright in enterprises and finally in the people.
Discussing this issue with the Vietnamese government is naturally the goal that Microsoft and other technology groups always focus on.
Vietnam Post: Microsoft has been in Vietnam for more than ten years but unlike other big technology groups like Intel, Microsoft doesn’t have any big projects in Vietnam. Is there any change after this agreement?
Intel makes hardware for computers and they have projects to build plants which is different from Microsoft, which produces software products, the products of knowledge.
We don’t need material conditions like plants to make software. In addition, the research and development process of Microsoft is only performed in the US.
At the end of the talk, Mr Craig Mundie expressed his deep impression about and thanked the warm welcome that the Vietnamese government and Vietnamese people gave him.
Reported by Binh Minh