Get everyone in Viet Nam in the picture

20 May 2015

Ha Noi, 20 May 2015 - A workshop to discuss key results from last November’s Ministerial Conference on Civil Registration and Vital Statistics in Asia and the Pacific was held this morning, 20 May 2015 by the Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Planning and Investment, UNFPA and UNICEF in Viet Nam.

UNICEF estimates that in the Asia and Pacific region there are 135 million children under the age of five whose births go un-registered. If a baby girl is born but not registered, if she dies soon after, her death is unlikely to be recorded. If she survives, without a birth certificate she is at much greater risk of being put to work as a child laborer, married off as a child bride, or trafficked against her will.

Civil registration and vital statistics systems are also crucial for achieving and monitoring the Millennium Development Goals, particularly those related to maternal and infant mortality.

Viet Nam has already made great progress:

  • It is one of five countries in this region to have achieved a birth registration rate of under 5’s above 95%;
  • The Law on Civil Status was amended to ensure the right of all children in Viet Nam to birth registration and a birth certificate;
  • Vital statistics are routinely produced and disseminated based on census and surveys;
  • The Viet Nam Statistics Development Strategy has been approved, supporting the efficient and effective production of reliable statistics for sound policy making and development.

Addressing the workshop, Ms. Pratibha Mehta said: "In our region, with one of the highest rates of the world’s unregistered births, we must undertake stronger actions to improve the civil registration and vital statistics system to register and record all the vital events of people, and use this system for evidence-based policy making, programming and delivery. The United Nations, as ever, stands with you today ready to support the efforts of the Government of Viet Nam to “get everyone in Viet Nam in the picture”.