From 2015 onwards, the measure for poverty will comprise five factors, including living conditions, access to education and health care, access to information, and access to insurance and social assistance, instead of the previous measure of income levels.

The Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs (MOLISA) presented the new measure at a conference in Hanoi on September 19, which focused on the initial research results on multidimensional approaches to poverty in Vietnam.

According to Ngo Truong Thi, head of MOLISA’s Poverty Reduction Office, Vietnam’s approach to poverty will be based on people’s needs and interests, rather than just their income.

Accordingly, a household that lacks half the basic needs will be considered critically poor, he said. Meanwhile, households that cannot meet between one third and a half of their needs will be regarded as multidimensional poor households.

Do Manh Hung, Deputy Head of the National Assembly Committee for Social Affairs, said the measure of poverty must be based on both living conditions and access to basic social services.

Participants in the conference agreed that the new approach to measure poverty would show common shortcomings in specific communities and regions, thus helping policy-makers identify geographic areas and demographic groups most in need of assistance.

The statistics will also help monitor poverty reduction results and evaluate poverty reduction policies and make timely adjustments, if needed, they said.

MOLISA will submit a proposal on the specific measurements of multidimensional poverty to the Government during the first quarter of 2015, and poverty surveys will be conducted during 2015.-VNA