Investment funds had poured $410 million into Vietnam’s fintechs as of the end of September 2019, according to a report of PricewaterhouseCoopers, United Overseas Bank and Singaporean Fintech Association.
The figure was 150 times higher than the whole year of2018. However, the investments mostly went to e-wallets, including $300 million to VNPay and $100 million to Momo Pay.
Fintech not only are e-wallets but also money transfers, finance and budget planning, savings and investments, lending and insurance.
Fintech has developed as a result of decentralization of the financial market, the rapid development of micro and small businesses, dynamic young generation of consumers, as well as freelancers.
Vietnam’s mobile telecommunications infrastructure with Internet connection has been recognized by GSMA as making the biggest improvements in 2014-2018.
|GSMA’s Mobile Connectivity Index (MCI) showed that Vietnam had 65 score in 2018 with 59.8 score for infrastructure, 64 for affordability, 73.2 for consumer’s readiness and 63.5 for service and content.|
GSMA’s Mobile Connectivity Index (MCI) showed that Vietnam had 65 score in 2018 with 59.8 score for infrastructure, 64 for affordability, 73.2 for consumer’s readiness and 63.5 for service and content.
The high index in affordability and consumer’s readiness show the great potential of the Vietnamese market in using mobile internet. Moreover, the demand for using convenient payment services keeps increasing.
The obstacles in using traditional bank accounts do not exist in using e-wallet. The advantages of e-wallet over traditional bank account can be compared with the advantages of mobile telecommunication over fixed line.
As for other fintech apps, though the current infrastructure conditions can satisfy the requirements, many problems still exist, including the demand for apps, ecosystem and risks in law enforcement.
New demand for fintech apps will be increasing, but the development of ecosystem, especially human resources, is still a huge challenge.
Meanwhile, the legal framework and policies still have not been adjusted to catch up with the strong development of the market.
The regulations on capital control, compliance with KYC (Know Your Customer), and the conditions for establishing and supervising fintechs are still unclear, hindering startups to compete with other regional countries, especially Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore.
Analysts warn that the delay will cause Vietnam’s fintech firms to lose opportunities to businesses from other countries.
The risks in law enforcement have led both businesses and consumers to hesitate to develop and use fintech apps. Since they do not have confidence in the judicial system, they don’t know what to do to settle disputes if they appear.
To prevent the spread of the new strain of coronavirus in Vietnam, customers are encouraged to adopt cashless payment methods.
Start-up activities are growing fast despite the slowdown of the global economy. The gap between Vietnam and the two regional leading countries, Indonesia and Singapore, has narrowed.