Vietnam to capitalize on ‘golden population structure’

(VOV) -Vietnam is entering a period known as ‘golden population structure’ providing the country with a unique socio-economic development opportunity, told an international workshop in Hanoi on October 16.

Domestic and foreign experts drew up an overall picture of Vietnam’s population-related issues, with a focus on analysing the down trend of birth rate and productive healthcare services.

An Education and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) report shows over the last three decades the number of people under 15 has fallen substantially, while the number of people of working age (15 to 64 years old) has increased considerably.

In other words, Vietnam is currently having a ‘golden population structure’, meaning for every two people or more working, there is only one dependent person. 

The experts stressed the need for a job generation and vocational training for young workers to take advantage of the abundant labour force which will gradually become elderly in the near future

The UNFPA report also points out the Vietnamese population is ageing rapidly due to sharp reductions in the number of children born (fertility) and the number of people dying (mortality), as well as increased life expectancy. 

The birth rate has fallen constantly over the past decades, reaching the total fertility rate of 2.03 children per woman in 2009. The fertility rate dropped sharply in rural areas from 2.57 children per woman in 1999 to 2.14 children per woman in 2009.

The average life expectancy of Vietnamese people was 72.8, or 4.3 years more than in 2009. Women’s life expectancy was higher than men’s and 5.5 years more than a decade ago.

Some other countries such as Japan, Singapore and Taiwan experienced a similar situation two or three decades ago, posing a great challenge to the social welfare system.

The experts suggested Vietnam take into account the demographic trend in its population and reproductive health strategy, and examine the comparatively low fertility rate in several regions to introduce proper policies.

The event was jointly held by the Party Central Committee’s Commission for Information and the UNFPA.