100 per cent foreign-owned companies are not allowed to do business directly and publish online games in Vietnam according to the local’s law but recently few foreign companies found doing it in the country by releasing online games from mainland China and South Korea.
Le Hong Minh, general director of VNG, the first company to launch licensed online games in Viet Nam said that Vietnam has great potential because it has 13 million gamers in the country and the online games sales turnover is expected at VND4.6 trillion (or USD219 million) this year. He believed more and more online games from China and South Korea are expected be brought by the foreign companies into Vietnam because the country is the biggest online games market in the Southeast Asia and the market of these two countries are saturated.
The domestic online game publishers are having difficulty to compete with the foreign publisher especially in technological development. For the time being, the local authorities cannot intervene it due to the servers of foreign publishers are located in other countries, unless they ban the local deposit card issuers to offer their payment option to the foreign publishers. In Vietnam, most the gamers are mostly use cash to buy deposit cards from companies like Viettel, MobiFone, VinaPhone, MegaCard, FPT and VTC which are used to pay for playing the games.
by Terry Brown