The evolution of population policy in Vietnam 1961-2011

Bang Nguyen Pham, University of Queensland
Peter S. Hill, University of Queensland
Wayne Hall, University of Queensland
Chalapati Rao, University of Queensland

This paper documents the evolution of population policy in Viet Nam over the last fifty years. The paper develops a framework for stakeholder analysis to analyse the interactions between leading state agencies in policy development and their influence on the organizational structure of the population programme. The population policy has played a role in reducing the fertility of Viet Nam from an average of six children per women of reproductive health in the 1960s to only two in the 2000s. However, there is still a gap between international treaties endorsed by the state and local practices that constrain the full enjoyment of reproductive health and rights by the Vietnamese people. The paper highlights the current tensions in the population policy response to new challenges arising from the socio-economic and demographic transition of the country. The paper calls for a new population policy to address broader population and development issues.

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Presented in Session 5: Family policies