More than 7.4 million people have registered for unemployment insurance since the policy was adopted two years ago.

Speaking at a press briefing, representatives of the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs' Employment Department said as of December last year, the country's unemployment insurance fund reached 4.8 trillion VND (240 million USD).

The total fund for 2009 and 2010 was over 8.3 trillion VND (415 million USD). According to figures from the department, as of February this year, about 225,700 laid-off workers registered to get unemployment benefits, while 177,000 received allowances equal to 60 percent of their average monthly salary in the last six months they had worked.

As of last December, the department disbursed 550 billion VND to benefit laid-off workers.

The Unemployment Insurance Law came into effect two years ago.

The fund includes 1 percent of an employee's salary, 1 percent of businesses wage fund plus a contribution from the State equal to 1 percent of the wage fund.

According to the General Statistics Department, the unemployment rate fell during the first six months this year.

The rate was estimated at 2.58 percent, while the figure last year was 4.1 percent./.