A group of ethnic minority women in the mountainous district A Lưới in the central province of Thừa Thiên-Huế receive training on making brocade products commercially, as part of a programme by Việt Nam Rural Industries Research and Development Institute and USAID aiming to promote sustainable development in the area. VNA/VNS Photo Hồ Cầu
HÀ NỘI — Việt Nam has made good progress in human development, with an average annual Human Development Index (HDI) growth of 1.36 per cent during the 1990-2018 period.
This places Việt Nam among the group of countries with the highest HDI growth rates in the world.
This is one of the key finding of the 2019 Human Development Report, released on Monday by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) entitled “Beyond income, beyond averages, beyond today: Inequalities in human development in the 21st Century.”
Addressing the report launch in Hà Nội, UNDP Resident Representative Caitlin Wiesen said the 2019 Human Development Report disclosed the next generation of inequalities emerging around digital technology, education, and the climate crisis and proposes new ways of measuring and approaching inequalities.
Wiesen praised Việt Nam for having firmly embarked on people-centered development and equality in its current socio-economic development strategies and plans.
“Việt Nam’s significant Human Development progress since 1990 has been achieved with relatively low increases in inequality,” she said.
“Taking into account the Inequality Adjusted HDI, Việt Nam is eight places higher than its HDI ranking in 2018.”
“Việt Nam is at a critical juncture as it designs its next Socio-Economic Development Strategy, with decisions made today determining whether the country will continue its current pattern of growth with relatively low inequality or whether new forms of emerging inequalities will be further entrenched and deepened with unsustainable growth pathways.”
According to the report, Việt Nam’s 2018 HDI of 0.693 is above the average of 0.634 for countries in the Medium Human Development group.
Việt Nam ranks 118th out of 189 countries, and needs only an additional 0.007 points to join the High Human Development group. Việt Nam’s HDI rank in 2018 is higher than India’s, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Cambodia.
Meanwhile, Việt Nam’s loss of HDI value due to inequality in 2018 is 16.3 per cent, its loss of income due to inequality is 18.1 per cent and, its GINI coefficient – a statistical measure of economic inequality in a population – at 35.3 – are among the lowest in the East Asia and Pacific region.
Việt Nam has also been performing well in terms of gender equality. The Gender Development Index value of 1.003 puts the country in the top five groups of 166 countries in the world, with Việt Nam ranking 68th out of 162 countries in Gender Inequality Index. Particularly commendable is the share of seats in parliament which places Việt Nam among the top third of countries globally.
However, Caitlin said, there were important areas for improvement. Việt Nam ranks among the bottom third of countries globally in terms of sex ratio at birth (1.12), violence against women by non-intimate partners (34.4 per cent) and women with accounts in financial institutions or with mobile money service provider (30.4 per cent).
Although Việt Nam’s forest coverage as among the top third of countries globally, the country is among the bottom third of countries in terms of carbon emission per capita.
Addressing these would be a key challenge to ensure the sustainability of Việt Nam’s growth, she said.
Caitlin suggested that Việt Nam should raise people’s awareness on sex-selection issue.
“If it is not addressed, they will create lots of destruction for Việt Nam in the future,” she told Việt Nam News.
Nguyễn Tiến Phong, Assistant Resident Representative of UNDP, said regarding to socio-economic sustainability, a lot of jobs generated by small and medium enterprises did not require skills, meaning Việt Nam ranks low in skilled labour force and vulnerable employment.
Vũ Đại Thắng, Vice Minister of Ministry of Planning and Investment said Việt Nam has issued an action plan on the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for sustainable development.
The Vietnamese Government’s determination was represented by the Nation Assembly's approval of the master plan on socio-economic development for ethnic minority people with the goal of ensure equality in human development. It was in accordance with the spirit “Don’t leave any one behind” upheld by the government, he said. — VNS