Vietnam has seen good economic growth and is continuing with reforms to move towards a market economy integrated into world trading systems.

The country has made progress towards the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) – notably in enrolment for education and reduction of infant mortality. Social inequalities need, however, to be addressed and the country’s integration into the international economy requires consolidation.

Support to attain Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)   

EU priorities in Vietnam – detailed in the EU Vietnam Country Strategy Paper 2007-13 – are to give direct support to the government’s initiatives to reduce poverty and improve healthcare to the poor.

A €140 million EU allocation is provided for the strategy 2011-13. The initial Multi-Annual Indicative Programme (2007-10) allocated a €160 million sum.

EU support is also improving trade and is enabling an EU-Vietnam strategic dialogue under the Vietnam-EU bilateral agreementnotably in the sub-group on ‘cooperation in institution building, administrative reform, governance and human rights’.

A €16 million trade and investment project started up in July 2012. Negotiations between the European Commission and Vietnam’s Ministry of Health were expected to lead to the approval in 2013 of a major budget support programme for the country to bring about improved health service delivery to the poor and an overall improvement in health service management.

Cross-cutting themes – running across several sectors – are also an important part of EU-Vietnam cooperation, including environmental protection, culture and education, gender equality, the promotion of human rights and good governance.

EU regional and thematic programmes – such as those for civil society and human rights which benefit many developing countries in many regions – provide grants to relevant organisations in Vietnam.



Key country statistics

  • Total population (2015): 93 448 000
  • Life expectancy (at birth) (2015): 71 years (male), 80 years (female)
  • Human Development Index - Medium human development (2014): 0.666
  • Population living below $1.90 a day (2012): 3.2%
  • Income share held by lowest 40% of income distribution (2012): 17.3%
  • Lower middle income country - Gross National Income per capita (2012): 1 022 US$ (constant 2005 US$)
  • Average Gross Domestic Product growth over 5 years (2009-2013): 5.8%

Selected results achieved with EU support through projects and programmes completed between mid-2014 and mid-2015


  • The national health insurance law has been revised based on formalised, measurable and uniform standards
  • Tools and templates for health planning, budgeting and monitoring & evaluation have been produced and were approved as a contribution to improving the policy, organisation, quality and dissemination of health services
  • A strategic plan for a Health Information System (HIS) has been developed as a contribution to improving the policy, organisation, quality and dissemination of health services
  • Medical guidelines have been developed consisting of checklists and protocols that have to be available and applied to standard operating procedures by all hospitals
  • In 12 provinces, health service providers are appropriately equipped with medical equipment and trained to use them

Natural Resources, Environment and Climate Change

  • Procedures and regulations to ensure local stakeholder participation and consultation in forestry management have been developed and are being implemented
  • 2 400 new industrial products have been developed as more sustainable products with a reduced environmental impact


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