Vietnam's population plan

Posted: 30 July 2001

Vietnam has announced plans to reduce its population growth rate to 1.1 per cent and mortality rate among newly-born babies to 2.5 per cent by 2010. At present Vietnam's population of 79 million is growing by 1.4 per cent a year.

The country is striving to increase the average life expectancy from 66.4 in 1998 to 71 in 2010 while reducing the malnourishment rate among children under five from 36.7 per cent in 1999 to 25 per cent in 2010.

Vietnam also hopes to raise the use of modern contraceptive methods to 70 per cent.

Vietnam's National Committee for Population and Family Planning planned to invest 56 billion Vietnamese dong (US$3.8 million ) in 2001 in a drive to improve reproductive health and family planning services in 5,400 mountainous, island, remote, isolated and flood-prone areas in 52 provinces of the country.

The Committee attributes the reduction in the country's population growth rate from 2.1 per cent a decade ago, to a strong government commitment to family planning,increased availability and choice of contraceptoive methods and its continuing education campaign.

The government strategy also targets a 50 per cent reduction in the number of abortions by 2010. (Teenage abortions account for over 20 per cent of Vietnam's estimated 1-1.4 million abortions a year.)

According to Dr Nguyen Tuan Anh of the Ministry of Health, the Moinistry will encouraging young people to go to official health care services for reproductive health care counselling rather than to private clinics which often carry high risks, or to private doctors who are often judgmental of their preganancies.

Source: Vietnam News Agency, Xinhua (July 2001) and AP World News (December 2001) and IPPF.