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Why does Binh Duong build smart city?

Update: 11-09-2018 | 11:29:11


With the desire to innovate, improve and improve the quality of people’s lives, since Mar 2016, Binh Duong province has implemented the project of Smart City, but did not apply an usual approach, which was application of modern technologies to solve a number of issues such as traffic, energy, e-administration etc. Provincial leaders made a decision to study a successful breakthrough model of smart cities around, especially Eindhoven, Netherlands. Since then, Binh Duong has risen up to a new height in terms of socio-economic growth oriented towards services and hi-tech production.

Inevitable development trend

At present, the environmental and population changes in urban areas is an urgent problem in the world that require innovative solutions to create a better living and working environment for people. More than half of the global population is now living in cities and neighborhoods, and this rate will continue to rise. One of the practical solutions that have been implemented by many countries in the world is the planning for urban development towards smart city model, which will provide strategic solutions as well as the application of modern technologies to improve the quality of people’s lives.


Binh Duong is building up a smart city. In photo: Binh Duong New City. 

In developed countries, a number of cities, such as New York in the United States, Montreal in Canada, Suwon in Korea, etc. have been recognized as "smart" according to different criteria. Many countries have also announced the development of smart city as their national strategy. In developing countries - where population and environmental issues are growing rapidly, building a smart city has also become a trend, as in China and India. In Vietnam, recognizing the importance of this trend, many localities such as Hanoi, Da Nang, Ho Chi Minh City, Can Tho... announced their launching of smart city projects.

At present, many of the world's most prosperous provinces and cities are successfully adopting a sustainable approach: First and foremost, the creation of a close and dynamic cooperation mechanism between multiple local actors (such as businesses, local government, people...) to promote the strength and creativity of the whole community; At the same time, depending on the overall picture, nature of the socio-economy and strengths of each locality, breakthrough objectives for a synchronous implementation must be set up together; considering people not technology as the center and bringing mutual benefit to parties. Binh Duong is a good example of Vietnam, and is planning socio-economic strategies towards smart city according to this approach.

Challenges and opportunities

Twenty years ago, Binh Duong made a series of breakthroughs with the industrialization strategy, bringing the province from a poorly agricultural province into an excellent industrial province. However, Binh Duong is facing new challenges, in which the main cause is the province's economy still has to rely on traditional production, products have low added values, is labor-intensive. In order to thoroughly solve challenges, Binh Duong needs to transform its economy from traditional production into a higher value-added economy, high-tech production, less labor-intensive, as well as upgrading urban areas. However, this is a new direction, requiring Binh Duong to have new development methods.

Located in the Southern Key Economic Zone, Binh Duong has basic advantages to prepare for the above-mentioned orientation. Namely, the whole province has more than 30,000 enterprises, 29 industrial zones, large-scale and synchronous infrastructure system. In particular, Binh Duong is located in the high-knowledge area of ​​the country. In the province, there are 8 universities, 7 colleges, 16 vocational schools, 45 vocational centers, and the province is also in the area having more than 120 universities, colleges with 2-hours driving.

In addition, the country and the world are also opening up great opportunities for an industrial province like Binh Duong. Specifically, Vietnam is receiving a switching wave of global production. Meanwhile, in the world, many new development trends are opening the new direction of the era, such as Industry 4.0 (World Economic Forum 2017), building smart cities (is the whole territory’s strategy of Singapore, Netherlands...). These models pose great difficulties for countries with low technological levels, but also is a golden chance for these countries to thrive.

Turning towards sustainable development

Based on deep international relations of Binh Duong, provincial leaders and Becamex IDC decided to study and learn experiences in smart city building of the world. Leaders of Binh Duong province were very interested in Eindhoven's smart city model, in which "Triple Helix" is the focus; these parties share knowledge and aspirations, thereby build up the socio-economic of the region.

Nguyen Van Hung, CEO of Becamex IDC, said that smart city construction in Binh Duong applied the "Triple Helix" model of Eindhoven City. The main idea came from the fact that Eindhoven, 20 years ago, used to be a small and traditional industrial area, because it does not have advantages, such as airports, seaports… However, they boldly launched a new growth model called Triple Helix. With technology foundation, they gradually built up Eindhoven as a place not only to work but also to live. Eindhoven is now listed as one of the world's smartest cities.

After careful research on the potential and similarities of two localities, Binh Duong province and Eindhoven City signed an agreement. On 28 Mar 2016, Binh Duong announced the launch of Binh Duong Smart City project applying “Triple Helix” model of Eindhoven City. The project aims to lay the foundation for a high-tech manufacturing, intelligent urban planning by 2021. It will create a premise for Binh Duong to advance towards a knowledge economy, and welcome the Industry 4.0.

According to Mr. Hung, in a smart city, information and data should be freely circulated. It is favorable when the basic information infrastructure, optical fiber transmission line of Binh Duong is well prepared for future developments. Being a smart city will help Binh Duong attract more new businesses and residents, creating a sustainable development for Binh Duong city in the future.

Reported by Phuong Le – Translated by Ngoc Huynh

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