Dozens of Samsung Display engineers will be allowed into Vietnam even as the country remains in a state of partial lockdown due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Following an agreement with the Vietnamese government, the company will fly 180 of its staffers to Bac Ninh on Saturday, The Korea Herald reports, citing sources familiar with the matter.
The special exemption was not agreed without unique precautions, as the engineers will ostensibly be quarantined close to Samsung Display's North Vietnam factory. They're expected to be flown over on a special chartered flight from Seoul.
Samsung Display allowed to bring its workers into Vietnam
The development is good news for Samsung whose global supply chain is heavily reliant on Vietnam. The quarantine precautions Hanoi set a month ago already prompted speculation about the tech giant's ability to maintain everyday operations, particularly in regards to electronics output.
The entourage scheduled to arrive in Bac Ninh over the weekend will primarily be assigned to the chaebol's OLED lines in the region. Those are understood to be absolutely crucial for a number of Samsung Electronics' contemporary flagship lines, including the Galaxy Fold series.
While Samsung Display may count this as a win, it's far from a major one seeing how the panel maker first wanted to send around 700 engineers to Vietnam earlier this month. Granted, that figure also included some subcontractors, but it remains to be seen whether Samsung manages to cut through any more of the coronavirus-related red tape in the coming weeks and get more of its personnel into the country.
Regular arrivals from South Korea are still being placed into a 14-day quarantine upon entering Vietnam. The measure that's likely to remain in place for the foreseeable future also caused problems for Samsung's domestic and global rival LG. However, LG Display and LG Innotek have now reportedly agreed to a similar exemption with the Vietnamese administration and will be sending some 250 staffers to the northeastern part of the country (Hai Phong) on Monday.