New poverty line to be submitted for approval in September

A new updated poverty line relevant to modern conditions will be submitted to the Prime Minister this September since the existing line is too low, said Minister of the Ministry of Labour, Invalids, and Social Affairs (MOLISA) Pham Thi Hai Chuyen on April 15. 

She made the announcement on the final working day of the 10th plenary meeting of the National Assembly Committee for Social Affairs in Ho Chi Minh City. 

MOLISA Deputy Minister Nguyen Thanh Hoa reported the poverty rate among households nationwide was cut from 14.2 percent in 2010 down to 5.8-6 percent by the end of 2014. The figure is expected to fall to below 5 percent in late 2015. 

The number of low-income families in Vietnam reduces by an average of 2 percent annually, while the rate in impoverished districts drops by more than 5 percent yearly, meeting the targets set for 2012-2015. 

He noted though the poverty rate has decreased sharply in disadvantages districts and ethnic minority communities, it is unsustainable and still exceeds 50 percent in some localities. 

Meanwhile, the MOLISA’s poverty elimination programme is currently overlapping with the national new-style rural area building programme in terms of localities, beneficiaries, and policies, noted Vice Chairman of the NA Committee Do Manh Hung. 

Minister Chuyen said her ministry will review households struggling with acute diseases, lack of income, or inability to work in order to provide appropriate assistance and ensure sustainable poverty alleviation. 

The MOLISA will also liaise with the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Planning and Investment to examine poverty reduction programmes to prevent overlaps as demanded by the Prime Minister, she added.