Vietnam's information technology (IT) industry, especially the software sector, developed strongly in 2013 and promised to enjoy high growth this year and in years to come, Le Manh Ha, deputy chairman of the Ho Chi Minh (HCM) City People's Committee, told local media on Thursday. According to the city's Computer Association, most local enterprises in the software and IT services industry achieved a growth rate of 30 percent and more in 2013. Hoang Minh Chau, a member of FPT Corporation's founding committee and FPT Myanmar chairman, said that revenue at his company reached 28.64 trillion VND (1.35 billion U.S. dollars) in 2013, an increase of 13 percent over 2012. Also, profits during the period went up by 5 percent to 2.5 trillion VND (118 million U. S. dollars). Nguyen Hai Long, deputy director of Quang Trung Software City ( QTSC), said IT companies in QTSC reported very good business results last year, with many firms having high recruitment demand. La Manh Cuong, managing director of Luxoft Viet Nam located in the software city, for instance, said his revenue last year was worth 1.16 million U.S. dollars compared to 657,000 U.S. dollars in 2012. Businesses have also reported higher business targets this year, Cuong said, adding that Luxoft Vietnam has set a target to achieve 2 million U.S. dollars in revenue in 2014. Meanwhile, Nguyen Thanh Lam, CEO of FPT Software, the country's largest software company, said the company's software exports were expected to increase by at least 30 percent this year. Japan, its major market, had high import demand for software products, Lam said, adding that many Japanese firms had shifted their import orders from China to Vietnam, offering a great opportunity for Vietnamese software exporters, not only for FPT Software. Besides, exports to the United States and the EU are also expected to remain good this year. FPT Software has 5,000 engineers, and is planning to recruit 2, 000 more this year, said the FPT official. According to Chu Tien Dung, chairman of the HCM City Computer Association, the prestige and position of Vietnamese software companies were improving in the world market, and that chances are abundant, but challenges are great to local IT firms, including human resource training. Enterprises also expressed their concerns about difficulties involving the import of IT equipment and lack of support to increase the use of cloud-based applications at enterprises and others. According to the Vietnam Software and IT Services Association, in 2013 Vietnam surpassed India in software exports to rank second in the Japanese market, and the country was in the top 10 software exporting nations in the world.