Today we had to get up an hour earlier than normal at 7:30 to head to a packed day. We had two company visits. One being VSIP which is a company that makes industrial parks, and the other being II-VI which is a manufacturing company that I was assigned to do research for before leaving for the trip. We toured VSIP first and it was really cool seeing a mini model of the park they’ve built and hearing about the problems they’ve had with tenants. The Vietnam and Singapore have a free trade agreement where goods can be imported and exported with no tariffs. The Vietnam government is the one who organized this trade agreement to help facilitate the insourcing of foreign materials to help with the development of the company. In the agreement, the Vietnamese government agreed to take 0% income tax for the first four years and eventually worked its way up to a normal tax rate over a few years. The company faces some issues with foreign entities violating regulations, but for the most part all their tenants are compliant.
We then went to a nearby mall to hang out for a few hours and eat lunch. A few people and I headed over to the arcade in the mall and play Dance Dance Revolution. After that we just went around and walked through all the stores to kill the time, it definitely was not as great as the King of Prussia mall back at home. Next, we visited II-VI which happens to be one of the tenants of VSIP. Next, we visited II-VI. Some issues II-VI faced was the lack of diversity of products that they sold in Vietnam, to counter this they bought another company out to combine their output to cover a broader array of products. II-VI specializes in manufacturing thermo-electric cooling devices. They have a slight fear that in the future when Vietnam comes closer and closer to achieving a “smart city” that they will fall behind in the products they produce and they won’t be able to keep up with other companies. However they say that it is all just speculation and no one knows for sure what could happen in the future. II-VI opened up a branch in Vietnam because of tax incentives and cheap labor cost. We toured II-VI’s manufacturing lines of their lenses and thermo-electronic coolants. The products they made are ordered by companies and are produced to how the company specifically wants it. This is a downside because they cannot just mass produce the same products because every company asks for their own design. For certain jobs, the workers could be trained for up to 2 years, while other manufacturing jobs only needs 2 weeks. I thought it was really cool to tour a manufacturing line because all the other companies have been primarily on the business side. I really enjoyed hearing the whole process of making thermo-electric coolants and seeing what all the different machines did.