Vietnam is entering a period known as the ‘golden population structure’, thus the country needs to take advantage of the period to further promote its socio-economic development, focusing on creating jobs and increasing productivity.

The suggestion was made by experts operating in the population field when they attended a recent workshop in Hanoi, which aims to analyse the latest population research results and make recommendations on Vietnam’s policy in the field.

Jointly organised by the Party Central Committee’s Commission for Popularisation and Education and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), the event drew an overall picture of Vietnam’s population-related issues, with a focus on analysing the falling birth rate and productive health care services in recent times.

UNFPA’s surveys showed that the birth rate in Vietnam has decreased over the past decades, reaching a total fertility rate (TFR) of 2.03 children per woman in 2009. The highest rate is recorded in women between the ages of 25-29.

The rate dropped sharply in rural areas from 2.57 in 1999 to 2.14 in 2009.

The average life expectancy of Vietnamese people was 72.8, 4.3 years more than in 2009. The rate in women was higher than in men, up 5.5 years over a decade ago.

As a result, the Vietnamese population is ageing rapidly due to the sharp reduction in the number of children born and increasing life expectancy.

According to participants, some other countries such as Japan and Singapore experienced a similar situation two or three decades ago, thus they met great challenges because of the lack of a labour force.

The experts suggested Vietnam considers the demographic trend in its population, while fostering the research on the comparatively low fertility rate in several regions to introduce proper policies.-VNA