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TA Associates Vietnam Limited will commence work on a US$1.2-billion software park in Thu Thiem new urban area on Saturday, more than a month after it received an investment certificate.

The developer of the project in An Loi Dong Ward in District 2 is a 20:80 joint venture between Saigon Telecommunication and Technologies Corp (SaigonTel) of Vietnam and Singapore's TA Associates International.

This is one of the first projects that will get off the ground in Thu Thiem New Urban Area which will become a modern town when in place. The Thu Thiem Software Park will be built on nearly 16 hectares of land along the East-West Highway in the new town, which is opposite the city's current commercial district.

In addition to offices for lease, there will be attaining center, commercial retail spaces and business facilities inside the park. The training center will provide skilled labor for tenants.

The project will develop seven 20-story buildings having total floor space of 650,000 square meters, with some 487,500 square meters of it for hi-tech, software and chip design companies, banks and others; 97,500 square meters for commercial and retail purposes and 65,000 square meters for residential for experts.

SaigonTel is a member of Saigon Invest Group while the Singapore firm is a member of Taiwan's Teco Group.

Dang Thanh Tarn, chairman of Saigon Invest Group, said Teco was operating the 10-hectare Nankang Software Park in Taipei, which yields annual revenue of some US$10 billion, and the park in Vietnam would be home to some software companies from Nankang.

The Thu Thiem Software Park will contribute to the process of transforming Vietnam's labor force to a high-tech one, and attract other companies to invest in the technology sector, he said.

Some 1,200 tenants are estimated to set up shop in the park. The park will be completed within seven years and a half. However, the project will be partially commissioned by end-2012, and will create 40,000 new jobs in the construction process and 70,000 other jobs for software specialists and information technology engineers thereafter.

Tam said the park in Thu Thiem would result in an extra US$2.95 billion in foreign direct investment, contribute US$4.3 billion in taxes, and generate US$6.5 billion in annual output.

Speaking at the license award ceremony in June, Theodore M. H. Huang, chairman of Teco Group and of TA Associates Vietnam Limited, said the park in Thu Thiem would be made similar to the Nankang park to attract ICT companies.

As the biggest single software park project in Vietnam, the park is expected to contribute significantly to the restructuring of the city's economy towards service, especially for the hi-tech sector, and make the city the largest software development center in the region.

This is the second IT project to be licensed in Thu Thiem new urban area. The first worth US$610 million is Vija Brain Park of Japan's Vija PowerSource Corp. (Vija Power).

Source: Saigon Times

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