Vietnam ’s progress in reducing the birth rate over the last 20
years helped prevent the addition of another 18.5 million people to the
population, said Head of the General Office for Population and Planning
Duong Quoc Trong.
"Imagine if we added another 18.5 million people to the current
population, how overloaded cities such as Hanoi and HCM City
would be," Trong said at a press conference on Nov. 30 to launch the
national population planning month.
" Vietnam ’s remarkable progress in population planning has contributed a great deal to our socio-economic picture."
In 1961, Vietnam issued the first legal document that called for
better planning in population and reproductive health. Since then, the
population growth rate has decreased from 3.5 percent in the 1960s to
1.5 percent in 2010. With the number of children on average per woman
dropping from 6.3 in the 1960s to the current two, Vietnam ’s
population control programme has been considered one of the most
effective in the world.
Tran Van Chien, deputy head of the
General Office for Population and Planning, said that over the past 20
years, funding for all activities related to population and planning
between 1991-2011 was only 8.4 trillion VND (400 million USD). "We have
to acknowledge that the progress in family planning and population is
critical to the country's socio-economic progress and contributes
directly to increasing the annual GDP per capita," Chien said.
As the pressure to reduce the birth rate lowers, officials said efforts
during the 2011-20 period would be focused on improving the quality of
the population, which means improving access to healthcare for mothers
and newborns, taking advantage of the "golden" population, taking a
pro-active approach to controlling population growth and reducing the
sex ratio imbalance.
Last month, in its national strategic
population and reproductive health plan for 2011-20, the Government
also outlined 11 targets to maintain the well-being of the population,
such as maintaining the population growth rate at around 1 percent in
2015 and to the stable level of 1 per cent or lower in 2020, and
increasing the human development index to the world medium level by
During the national month of population planning,
various activities and forums will be held nationwide to increase
awareness at all levels on population planning activities, especially in
Vietnam ’s population at 87 million is still the 13th largest in the world./.