The State Bank of Vietnam (SBV), the central bank for the country, established a Steering Committee on Financial Technology (FinTech) on March 17.
The Steering Committee will have representatives from functional departments of the SBV and the National Payment Corporation of Vietnam (NAPAS). NAPAS provides switching and electronic clearing and settlement services in Vietnam. Its shareholders include SBV and 15 large commercial banks in Vietnam. It operates and manages an inter-bank connection system with 16,800 ATMs, 220,000 POS devices and over 90 million domestic cards from 43 domestic commercial banks and foreign banks operating in Vietnam. NAPAS also provides e-commerce services to more than 200 merchants, including airlines, telecommunications, hotels, tourism and others.
The SBV Steering Committee on FinTech is being led by Deputy Governor Nguyen Kim Anh and Deputy Director of SBV Payment Department Nghiem Thanh Son has been assigned as Vice Chairman of the Committee.
The Committee will be responsible for formulating and submitting an annual action plan to the SBV Governor, advising the Governor on solutions to build an appropriate ecosystem, including a legal framework to facilitate the development of FinTech companies in Vietnam in line with the guidance and orientation of the government, overall strategy and plans for accelerating the development of FinTech in Vietnam.
As part of this, the SBV Governor also approved the establishment of a Working Group to support the SBV Steering Committee on FinTech including officials and specialists from functional departments of the SBV and the NAPAS. The Payment Department of the SBV has been tasked to be a Standing Agency for SBV Steering Committee on FinTech.
According to the Ministry of Industry and Trade, in 2016 the number of cards issued nationwide reached 99.5 million, increasing 3 times compared to 2010. The value of card transactions nearly doubled during the period from 2011 to 2015 (though majority, 85%, were from ATM withdrawals and not payments). In January, Vietnam News stated in a report that 52% of the country’s population had access to the Internet and the number is growing supported by booming smartphone penetration. About 44% of customers at commercial banks have used digital services.
Read the SBV press release here.