A City Built by a Corporation?

After starting the day 2 with Pho and Vietnamese coffee again, we headed toward UEF to take a lecture about rural development in the Mekong Delta. We learned about how the Mekong Delta has been one of the most important parts of the life to the local people. For example, the Mekong Delta is responsible for the 50% of Vietnam’s rice production, along with 56% fishery production of the country. These products also significantly contributes to export earnings, as 90% of Vietnam’s exported rice comes from this region. As people interacted with others through the waterway, we learned that this unique environment has created a very interesting culture in this area: the floating market. This floating market is made up of many different merchants on small boats, such as restaurants, groceries, and even café. This notable tradition has been a landmark in this region, and I am very excited to visit next week.

After the lecture, we had our one hour of daily struggling and crying inside, aka the Vietnamese language class, and drove to our first site visit at Phu My Hung. Phu My Hung is a development corporation that focuses on human-oriented development and sustainability within the city. The company has done projects with various partners, including the U.S., Japan, Taiwan, South Korea, and so on, and has created a town with numerous houses, shops, infrastructures, and schools. Even though only one of the five districts is completed, this company has generated huge profits in the region, attracting tons of investors and creating jobs for the locals. As we drove around, I noticed that there were a lot of Korean restaurants, signs, malls, and buildings in the town. I have known that a lot of Koreans have moved to Vietnam recently, mostly because of their work, but seeing the actual town helped me get a sense of how not only Korea, but also other countries have influenced the Vietnam’s culture and economy.

Learning that the number of foreigners moving into Vietnam keeps increasing, I started to imagine myself coming back here in the future for work, since the country still has a lot more opportunities and space for development. As I visit other sites in the next few days, I expect to learn how each different company has led Vietnam to be an international hub for various industries.

P.S. The authentic Vietnamese coffee is by far the best drink I’ve ever had.

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