Vietnam’s poverty rate declined to 2.23 percent in 2021 from 2.75 percent in 2020, according to the Ministry of Labor, Invalids, and Social Affairs (MOLISA).
By the end of last year 2021, Viet Nam had 609,049 poor households while the number of near-poor households were 850,202, representing 3.11 percent.
Six localities namely Ha Noi, Hai Phong, Da Nang, Ho Chi Minh City, Binh Duong, and Tay Ninh reported no poor households.
On the other hand, Dien Bien had the highest poverty rate at 27.33 percent, followed by Ha Giang with 18.54 percent, Cao Bang 18.36 percent, and Bac Kan 17.22 percent.
Before 2015, Viet Nam applied the unidimensional poverty measure of income poverty. The income poverty line set by the Government is the per capita monthly income of the household, that ensured an estimated food intake of 2,100-2,300 Kcal/person/day and some additional essential non-food consumption (Table 1.1.1).
Based on this poverty line, the MOLISA identified and listed poor households at commune level and calculated the poverty rate from the National Census on Poverty it administered prior to every National Poverty Reduction Program, with the lists updated annually during implementation.
In November 2015, the Vietnamese Government promulgated national multidimensional poverty (MDP) measurements for application during 2016-2020, marking an important step in Viet Nam’s transition from an income-based to a MDP approach.
Noticeablly, Viet Nam was one of the pioneering countries in the Asia-Pacific region to adopt the MDP approach to eliminate poverty in all its dimensions. The Southeast Asian country set a national average MDP reduction target of 1.5 percent per annum and 2-4 percent in mountainous ethnic minority areas in the country’s five-year Socio-Economic Development Plan (2016-2020).
The MDP measurements, including income and non-monetary dimensions such as housing, access to water and sanitation, education and health services, social and health insurance, were used to design the National Target Program for Sustainable Poverty Reduction (NTP-SPR, 2016-2020) and identify poor households eligible for programme support, poverty reduction and social assistance policies.
MOLISA is responsible for using this multidimensional approach to identify a list of poor households at the communal level.