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Population Past, Present and Future

In 2030, the population of Vietnam will reach 106 million, an increase of 11.2% from 2017. This will result in:

  • 20.6% of the population will be aged 0-14
  • 67.0% of the population will be aged 15-64
  • 12.4% of the population will be aged 65+

The increasing population is influenced by factors such as a relatively high (albeit declining) birth rate and increasing life expectancy; factors which mitigate the effects of negative net migration.

Men and Women

Births and Fertility

In Vietnam the fertility rate was 2.0 children per female in 2017, just below the replacement rate of 2.1 and down from 5.0 in 1980. Much of the declining fertility rate has been put down to the government’s “two child policy” which includes limiting births by implementing measures such as issuing contraception, fining couples that have more than two children and not allowing them to move to urban centres. Fertility will fall to 1.9 by 2030. The average age of women at childbirth will rise from 27.0 years in 2017 to 27.4 years in 2030. The birth rate was 16.5 births per ‘000 in 2017, just below the Asia Pacific average of 17.0 and down from 32.1 in 1980. The birth rate will fall to 12.6 births per ‘000 by 2030, lower than the regional average of 14.0. The number of live births will fall every year between 2017 and 2030. In 2030 there will be 228,920 or 14.6% fewer live births than in 2017.

Migration

According to the World Bank, the stock of immigrants in Vietnam was 68,300 or 0.1% of the population in 2013. Meanwhile, the stock of emigrants was much higher at 2.9% in 2013. The proportion of immigrants in Vietnam was lower than in neighbouring countries Cambodia (0.5%) and Laos (0.3%), but on a par with China (0.1%) in 2013. Net migration will be negative between 2017 and 2030 and will average -40,655 per year, compared to an annual average of -106,362 between 2000 and 2016. The annual average net migration rate between 2017 and 2030 of -0.4 per ‘000 will be slightly lower than the Asia Pacific average rate of -0.3 over the same period.

Urbanisation

Vietnam’s population is predominantly rural. In 2017, just 34.9% of the population lived in urban areas although by 2030 approximately 43.0% of the population will be living in an urban setting. The rural population will increase to a peak of 62.2 million people in 2018. Between 2018 and 2030 it will fall by 2.5% to reach 60.6 million by 2030. Vietnam is less urbanised than the Asia Pacific average. 47.5% of the region’s population was urban in 2017, rising to 54.5% in 2030.

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