Launch of the Report on Figures on Ethnic Minority Women and Men in Viet Nam 2015-2019

Date: Wednesday, August 4, 2021

[Press release]

Ha Noi, Viet Nam — Today, the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women), with financial support from the Embassy of Ireland in Viet Nam, and in coordination with the Institute of Labour Science and Social Affairs under the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs (ILSSA-MOLISA), and the Department of Ethnic Minority Affairs - Committee for Ethnic Minority Affairs (CEMA) has launched two reports on “Figures on Ethnic Minority Women and Men in Viet Nam 2015-2019” and “Policy Brief: Gender issues in ethnic minority areas in Viet Nam.” The launch is organised in celebration of the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples on 9 August.

The two publications cover information on ethnic minority women and men in Viet Nam for the period of 2015-2019, including gender analysis outcomes and providing policy recommendations for gender equality promotion in ethnic minority areas in Viet Nam. Data in the reports were analysed based on the findings of the Survey on the Socio-economic Situation of the 53 Ethnic Minority Groups in Viet Nam, which was conducted by the General Statistics Office in collaboration with CEMA in 2015 and 2019. There are seven main topics: i) Population; ii) Infrastructure and assets; iii) Labour, employment, and income; iv) Education and training; v) Culture and society; vi) Health, environment, and sanitation; and vii) Ethnic minority cadres and civil servants.

Gender disaggregated data analyses show outstanding achievements in gender equality in ethnic minority and mountainous areas in the period of 2015 to 2019. These include, but are not limited to: the rate of child marriage in ethnic minority groups reduced by 4.7 percentage point; the percentage of ethnic minority households with access to the internet (Wi-Fi, cable, or 3G) increased 9.4 times from 6.5 per cent in 2015 to 61.3 per cent in 2019; the average income per capita per month of ethnic minorities in 2018 increased by 1.8 times in four years, and the average monthly income per capita of ethnic minority female-led households was always higher than that of male-led households; the proportion of children attending school at the right age increased by 15.2 per cent from 2015 to 2019; and the percentage of ethnic minority people participating in health insurance reached 93.5 per cent with no difference between men and women.

The reports also highlight persistent gender issues in ethnic minority and mountainous areas which are affecting women and girls. For instance, while the overall rate of child and consanguineous marriage among the 53 ethnic minority groups has reduced, the extent of reduction was uneven and has continued to increase among a number of ethnic minority groups. The analysis found that female ethnic minority workers are more likely to undertake insecure jobs and are more vulnerable in the workplace than their ethnic minority male and Kinh female counterparts. Also, while the percentage of ethnic minority women aged 10-49 who give birth at health facilities reached 86.4 per cent, it remains significantly lower than that of Kinh women which is over 99 per cent.

Mr. Bui Ton Hien, Director of ILSSA-MOLISA said, “In ethnic minority communities, women and girls are often more disadvantaged in accessibility to opportunities and resources due to social norms which impose an inferior position to them, limit them within birth delivery and household production activities. The intersection of various forms of gender and ethnicity-based discrimination bear the most impact.”

Mr. Luu Xuan Thuy, Director of Ethnic Minority Affairs Department - CEMA highly appreciates UN Women’s technical contribution and believes that gender equality analyses in ethnic minority areas are fundamental information and useful for the stakeholders in designing policies and intervention programmes to ensure that ethnic minority women are not left behind in the country’s sustainable development process.

Ms. Elisa Fernandez Saenz, UN Women Representative in Viet Nam said that the objective of the reports is to provide stakeholders with a clearer picture on the current gender equality situation in ethnic minority areas in Viet Nam, wherein gender issues are being well addressed by the government, but which needs further effort for intervention in both areas of policy and programme. She additionally emphasized, “gender equality issues which intersect with ethnicity are often difficult to tackle and require a comprehensive approach, as well as commitments of financial investment in the coming years. UN Women believes that these reports shall contribute to filling the gap of gender statistics among ethnic minority groups in Viet Nam, and to the progress of promoting socio-economic and sustainable development in ethnic minority areas.” Ms. Lisa Doherty, Deputy Head of Development at the Embassy of Ireland in Viet Nam said 'Ireland believes it is critical to empower and support women and their communities, and we prioritise gender equality in all our work. The Embassy of Ireland’s partnership with UN Women aims to ensure that the government's ethnic minority policies and programming - support for which has always been a central pillar of Ireland’s engagement in Viet Nam - includes appropriately strong attention to gender considerations and prioritises women's empowerment'

UN Women, the Department of Ethnic Minority Affairs, ILSSA, and the Embassy of Ireland encourage agencies, organisations, and individuals in the ethnic minority sector, as well as society in general, to pay close attention to and use gender statistics in the process of development, implementation, and monitoring of socio-economic development policies in ethnic minority and mountainous areas, and in all efforts towards sustainable development by 2030, to ensure no one is left behind.

Download the full reports:

For further information, please contact:

Hoang Bich Thao
Communication Officer, UN Women Viet Nam | Email: hoang.thao@unwomen.org | Tel: 0705143996