Today we visited VSIP, a very intriguing industrial park based one hour out of Ho Chi Minh City. The Vietnam Singapore Industrial Park is a joint venture because Singapore is a more financially well off, smaller, more expensive country and Vietnam is looking to develop their country and attract international business. Therefore, they worked together to create a huge industrial park of 724 customers, including customers from more than 30 countries. This company is nearly a billion dollar company and really impressed me with the enormity of the park. We took a bus tour of the park and it seemed like there was never going to be an end to the businesses on my left and right. Vietnam has tried to join more of these partnerships to develop, like joining ASEAN and WTO. Vietnam Singapore Industrial Park actually leases the land to businesses and also gets profits by the land increasing in value. I was surprisingly amazed by II-VI because it was an engineering company and it was just tours of factories, which aren’t my forte. However, I noticed how hard everyone was working on their specific jobs and they made some really cool, well-known products. They make the lens used for lasik eye surgery and they also were involved in the SleepNumber system where you can set a different temperature for each side of your bed. You can tell these workers go through an intensive training, even though for some of them it is their first job.
After getting back from these fascinating site visits, most of us went to the Saigon Skydeck for a view of the city before eating delicious beefsteak Vietnamese street food. My first street food other than tea was a huge success! Earlier in the day, we went to the mall for lunch and had fun exploring the different stores than the ones we have in the United States.