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News on SERI’s conferences, symposiums, and seminars.

SERI and Vietnam’s DSI Open Joint Economic Seminar

Oct. 31, 2013

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SERI and Vietnam’s DSI Open Joint Economic Seminar

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Samsung Economic Research Institute (SERI) jointly opened a seminar on the development of the Korean economy with Vietnam’s Development Strategy Institute (DSI) at the Hanoi InterContinental Hotel on September 30th 2013. On the same day, the Samsung Group and Vietnamese government entered into a strategic partnership and agreed to closely cooperate with regards to investment for Vietnam’s future economic development, making the seminar more significant.

Under the title “Economic Development of Korea and Vietnam: Sharing Experiences, New Opportunities,” the aim of the seminar was to share and exchange knowledge from Korea’s rapid growth and Vietnam’s future development strategy. The seminar was comprised of three sessions, with over 200 guests in attendance including Vietnamese government officials, DSI researchers, academics, diplomats, CEOs and of course the media. The seminar commenced with opening remarks from SERI President and CEO Chung Ki-Young, and former Ambassador of Vietnam and current Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Planning and Investment, Nguyen Van Tung.

SERI Vice President and Director of the Global Studies Department, Hwang In-Seong led Session I with a presentation on the miracle on the Han River and the success factors, and gave an overview of Korea’s economic development. Dr. Hwang explained that households, businesses and the government were able to form a ‘trinity’ for Korea’s development and successfully performed their roles within the economy. He added that corporations like Samsung have now received that baton from the government to lead a private-led growth. DSI President Bui Tat Thang followed with a presentation on the current status of the Vietnamese economy and its development strategy.

Session II offered an overview of Korea’s phased industrialization and the industrial policies that allowed this, and the underlying success factors. SERI research fellow Rhee Tae-hwan stressed that the strength of the Korean economy is industrial competitiveness based on a wide spectrum which spans across agriculture to cutting edge technology. He also noted that the government’s planning and preemptive investments in infrastructure and export-oriented industrial policies gave Korea’s industrialization much needed momentum. The presentation was followed by a panel discussion, chaired by the Dean of the KDI School of Public Policy, Nam Sang-Woo, on topics such as the requirements to escape the “middle income trap.”

Session III explored how clusters were built and transformed during Korea’s economic development. Through this final session led by SERI senior fellow Bok Deuk-Kyu, participants were able to learn about the transformation stages of Korea’s industrial clusters. Using a two-dimensional diagram with one axis categorizing the initiator (government-led vs. market-led) and the other classifying the basis (innovation-based vs. industry-based), Dr. Bok explained that the clusters can be grouped into four categories. The ensuing panel discussed the current status of Vietnam’s industrial cluster project and the drawbacks as well as the requirements for establishing a successful cluster.

After the sessions, participants were given the opportunity to exchange their knowledge and ideas over lunch. The seminar will allow both SERI and DSI to establish stronger human networks and was an opportunity to strengthen Korea and Vietnam’s future cooperation.

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