Việt Nam: ideal destination for South Koreans to live and work
It’s a late afternoon on a recent Saturday and a store in the Phú Mỹ Hưng urban area in HCM City’s District 7 is filled with customers from South Korea, looking for new clothing and shoes.
Many South Koreans who live in the Phú Mỹ Hưng area in HCM City’s District 7 send their children to the Korean International School, which is located in the area. —VNA/VNS Photo Mạnh Linh
Just opposite the clothing store is a South Korean coffee shop serving drinks and offering a selection of books for Korean readers, many of whom live in the neighbourhood.
Such sights are common on the streets of Bùi Bằng Đoàn, Nguyễn Đức Cảnh, Phạm Văn Nghị and others in Phú Mỹ Hưng, a suburban area outside HCM City.
Many South Korean restaurants, spas, shops and a supermarket serve the large South Korean expatriate community in the area. Many of them have signs in Vietnamese, English and Korean, and have staff who can speak Korean.
Grace Choi, 42, who moved with her husband to live in the area, said she could enjoy her country’s food and drinks at local shops and her children were able to attend schools nearby.
“I visited Việt Nam once before. A year ago, my husband said he was coming to work here, so I felt comfortable following him,” Choi added.
Ryan Jung, 47, also of South Korea, initially moved to neighbouring Đồng Nai Province in September 2001, when the Korean expatriate community in HCM City was much smaller. Many of them lived on D2 Street in the city’s Bình Thạnh District or the K300 residential area in Tân Bình District.
In 2004, when Kênh Tẻ bridge was built, connecting District 4 to District 7, more South Koreans moved from other districts such as Bình Thạnh and Tân Bình to the Phú Mỹ Hưng urban area.
Other new bridges, including Nguyễn Văn Cừ, Nguyễn Tri Phương and Chánh Hưng, have also made travelling between the districts of 1, 4, 5, 8, and 7 much easier in recent years.
Nearly 30-50 per cent of the residents living in Sunrise City apartment buildings in District 7 are South Koreans, according to Jung, who lives in the building.
Many South Koreans have also chosen to live in the An Phú area in District 2, which has many new apartment buildings.
According to the South Korean Consulate General in HCM City, nearly 100,000 South Koreans live in HCM City and neighbouring provinces, including Bình Dương and Đồng Nai.