Vietnam Country Report 2021

Vietnam Country Report 2021 : Viet Nam

21 Sep, 2021

Statista's Vietnam 2021 report provides comprehensive data on the country, including economy, trade, investment, society & politics, health, and the environment in Vietnam. See the summary below, or download the full Vietnam country report here.

Vietnam Country Report 2021
Table of contens

The Statista Vietnam 2021 report includes nine sections focused on the general economy, trade, investment, society, infrastructure, consumers, politics, health, and the environment in Vietnam. Gain insights into the major trends in Vietnam to assess the risks and opportunities relevant for international business.

1. Overview

Vietnam is considered as the next Asian tiger with low-cost, advanced manufacturing capabilities compared to rivals China. In 2019, Vietnam's growth rate hit over 7%. It can say that the set of economic and political reforms known as "Đổi Mới" has transformed Vietnam into a socialist-oriented market economy has brought strong economic growth in recent years. Vietnam's population in 2020 will be more than 96 million people. The total GDP hit 322,6 billion USD. The population in Ho Chi Minh City reached 8.6 million people and became the largest urban area in Vietnam.


With the excellent control of Covid in the first wave in 2019, Vietnam was ranked 2nd in the Lowy Institute Ranking of the relative performance of countries in the crisis. Although it responded well to the pandemic in the first wave, Vietnam is currently facing a second wave as of the middle of the year 2021; Vietnam recorded more than 10.000 daily infected cases and nearly 15 thousand deaths due to Covid19 up to September 2021. 

2. Economy


According to Statista, as of Q4 2020, Vietnam's GDP reached 322.6 billion USD, increasing by 6% compared to 2010. According to the report, the 5-year average GDP growth rate is about 7%; by 2025 it will reach about 452.5 billion USD.


Vietnam's GDP per capita is about 3,314 USD and is lower than the average GDP per capita in Southeast Asia in 2020. Vietnam has the 99th highest real GDP per capita, higher than Laos, the Philippines in Asia. In Vietnam, Hanoi Capital has a GDP per capita at 5,038 higher than the average of the country and being US$73,725 behind regional high-performer Singapore. Ho Chi Minh City - the most important center of the economy in Vietnam has the GDP per capita at 4,931 behind Hanoi Capital and before Phnom Penh.


Services, Industry, Agriculture are the main sectors that contribute to the GDP of the country. Services is the primary sector which accounted for 41,6% of GDP in 2019. Industry and Agriculture are 32,7% and 16,3% respectively. Other sectors account for 10% of the economic value-added. Although the COVID-19 epidemic is complicated and has far-reaching impacts on production and business activities and the lives of people and businesses, the report forecast the inflation is projected to increase from 2020 to 2025 at a rate of 4%.


The household consumption expenditure in Vietnam was lower than the regional average. According to Statista 2021, the household consumption expenditure in Vietnam accounted for 68.2% of GDP in 2019, lower than the regional average, which accounted for 71% of the GDP of Southeast Asia. 

The Debt-to-GDP ratio in Vietnam increased steadily from 2012 to 2016 and slightly decreased from 2017 to 2019 before rising again. In 2020, the Debt-to-GDP ratio in Vietnam accounted for 46.6%, lower than the average in Southeast Asia.


The Debt-to-GDP ratio reflects the country's ability to repay its debt. A country with a high Debt-to-GDP ratio often finds it difficult to pay off its foreign debts. In such cases, the lending country can raise the interest rate higher when lending. Extremely high Debt/GDP ratios can discourage lending to other countries.

According to VASS Vietnam, the actual implementation of the Public Debt Strategy for the period 2011-2020 shows several shortcomings from the legal framework for public debt management in Vietnam, such as the scope of public debt, the information system, and the lack of public debt statistics and many other issues related to debt management.


According to the Statista report, the labor force in Vietnam is estimated to have declined to 56.55 million in 2020. In actuality, according to the Labor Employment situation of 4th quarter 2020 in Vietnam published by the General Statistics Office of Vietnam; the labor force aged 15 and over was 55.1 million people, an increase of 563.8 thousand people in the 4th quarter of 2020 compared to the previous quarter but still 860.4 thousand people lower than the same period last year. 


In 2019, 37.2% of the total labor force worked in Agriculture, 35.3% worked in Services, and 27.4% worked in Industry. Most of the labor force aged 15 and above in Vietnam 2020 had Lower secondary education, which accounted for 34.8% of the total labor force. 25.5% of the labor force have primary education, 15% have upper secondary, and 4.4% labor force without education.


The estimated unemployment rate in Vietnam in 2020 was 3.30% and is projected to be 2.26% in 2026. However, facing the negative of the epidemic's second wave, Vietnam had to temporarily freeze its economy from June to September in 2021, causing the unemployment rate to increase rapidly.

According to the General Statistics Office of Vietnam: Labor employment situation of 2nd quarter and first six months of 2021 Press Release: The number of unemployed people in the working-age in the 2nd quarter of 2021 reaches approx. 1.2 million people, an increase of 87.1 thousand people compared to the previous quarter, and a decrease of 82.1 thousand people compared to the same period last year.

3. Trade & Investment


According to the report, Vietnam registered a higher export trade flow than the regional average in 2020. The total export value steadily increased from 2016 to 2019. The total merchandise exports amounted to US$264.3 billion in 2019. The share of manufacturers in merchandise exports is higher than the regional average in 2019, in which the Manufacturers accounted for 84.6% higher than the average of Southeast Asia (accounted for 53.9% of the SA total trade export values), Agricultural products accounted for 11.3% lower than the average of Southeast Asia. Fuels & Mining accounted for 2.5%.


Total merchandise exports amount of the country in 2019 reached 264.2 billion USD, up 8.4% over the previous year. The total imports reached USD 253.4 billion in 2019, up 7% (equivalent to USD 16.6 billion). The Manufacturer's merchandise export value in 2019 reached 223.7 billion USD, up 10.3% over the previous years (equivalent to 21 billion USD); the Fuels & Mining merchandise value reached 6.5 billion USD, the value of the Agricultural products reached 29.9 billion USD, and other merchandise value reached 4.1 billion USD.

FDI Flow


In 2019, The United States registered the highest inward FDI flow with US$246.2 billion, while Japan had the highest outward FDI sum in 2019 with 226.6 billion US Dollars. According to the Foreign Investment Agency in Vietnam, as of December 2020, the total foreign investment capital into Vietnam reached 28.5 billion USD, down 25% compared to 2019. Ho Chi Minh City led the FDI investment amount with a total registered capital of 4.36 billion USD, accounting for 15.3% of total investment capital.

4. Society

According to the latest data from the United Nations (UN - United Nations), the population of Vietnam as of July 4, 2021, is 98,176,244 people. 


Vietnam's population currently accounts for 1.25% of the world's population, ranked 15th in the population rankings of countries and territories in the world. The population density of Vietnam is currently 317 persons/km² with a total land area of ​​310,060 km². In which 37.34% of the population lives in urban areas (36.346,227 people in 2019). The average age in Vietnam is currently 32.9 years old. The population is projected to reach 107.8 million by 2040 by Statista Report.


The report shows that Vietnam has a high level of human development, ranking 117 out of 189 countries and territories. However, English proficiency is low; Vietnam ranks #65 out of 100 countries and territories.

5. Health

Infant Mortality


The infant mortality rate decreased from 2015 to 2019 in Vietnam, and this number is predicted to reduce less than 9% in the period 2021 - 2025. To achieve this result, The Ministry of Health has just approved the national action plan focused on improving maternal health status, narrowing the difference in maternal mortality and maternal health indicators across regions.


According to the WHO, about 6 million people die from diseases related to tobacco use, 600 thousand people die from diseases caused by exposure to passive cigarette smoke every year worldwide.

Vietnam is one of the countries that have the highest rate of tobacco use in the world. In 2020, Vietnam had 17.68 million people using tobacco. In which, male smokers accounted for 45.5%, and female smokers accounted for 0.9%. The number of obesity as a share of the adult population in 2020 accounted for 2.4% of the total population. On average, each Vietnamese person will consume 3.34 liters of alcohol in 2020. 


The number of physicians per capita in Vietnam was lower than the regional average. The ratio of physicians to the total population shows that Vietnam has less than 1 doctor per 1,000 people as of 2020. This is a modest number in the context of the need for medical care increases. The Digital Health Report in Vietnam published on January 20 noted that as of 2018, Vietnam had 77,995 doctors and 128,386 nurses nationwide. This is a minimum number compared to the total population of the country, which is less than 1 doctor and 2 nurses per 1,000 people. This number is lower than it was in Southeast Asia in 2020. 


However, in return, the number of hospital beds per capita was higher than the regional average. Vietnam has more than 2 beds per 1,000 people as of 2020. 


The total healthcare spending is forecasted to increase between 2017 and 2025. According to the report from Statista, the total healthcare spending in Vietnam in 2019 reached more than 17 million US Dollars. This number will increase to more than 24 million in 2020 and will reach 27 million in 2025.

6. Retail & Consumption


Vietnam has a mature retail market. The total retail sales of consumer goods and services per capita of the whole country were only 848,86 USD/person in 2010; by 2019, it increased to 2251,90 USD/person, contributing approximately 8% to the gross domestic product (GDP), according to the Ministry of Industry and Trade. Therefore, Vietnam's modern retail market has a lot of potential for development due to its large population size, young population structure, and average household spending increasing by 10.5% per year and will reach 714. USD/month in 2020. Therefore, the retail market is still very potential for foreign investors. 

Some widespread presence of international grocery chains include 7-eleven with a store location, and other brands that do not own store location are Walmart, Auchan, Migros, Aldi Consumers in Vietnam spend the most in the area of Food, non-alcoholic beverages, which account for 45.3% of the total consumer spending, and are most interested in clothing which 81% of respondents said that they are interested in this category.


Ecommerce generated the highest digital revenues with US$6,034.2m and a share of 81.4% in 2020. The 5 stores account for 54% of the top 500 net sales in Vietnam 2019. heads the top 10 Vietnamese stores list, which hit 475 million USD net sales in 2019. The second rank belongs to with 143 million USD net sales. has 142 million USD net sales and ranks 3rd in the top 10. With the total revenue reaching more than 6000 million USD in 2019, Vietnam's eCommerce revenue is expected to grow a positive annual average of 7.7% in 2025. 

To have a comprehensive overview of eCommerce in Vietnam, visit this link.

7. Infrastructure


Vietnam had the 69th highest internet penetration in the world in 2020, with the internet penetration ratio at 71.3% in 2020, higher than the average of Southeast Asia (at 68%) and lower than the one in Malaysia (at 95.2%). In the same year, in Vietnam, there were 143.7 mobile cellular subscriptions per 100 people. 5G availability in the country offered by Viettel and Mobiphone. 

8. Environment

Thanks to the process of industrialization and modernization, Vietnam has made great strides in economic development. But the flip side of it is the spike in CO2 emissions. 


According to the Statista report, Vietnam had the 26th highest CO emissions in 2019. The scale of the economy increased rapidly: GDP per capita in 1991 was only 188 USD/year. By 2003, GDP per capita reached 471 USD/year, and by 2015, the size of the economy reached about 204 billion USD, GDP per capita reached nearly 2,200 USD/year. Along with the process of industrialization, modernization, and economic development; as a result, Vietnam's CO2 emissions also increase year by year. At the beginning of the development period (1986), Vietnam's CO2 emissions ranked 6th among ASEAN countries with 25,605 thousand tons; By the end of 2019, Vietnam's CO2 emissions ranked third with 271,474 thousand tons.

In the list of survey countries in Statista's Reports, as we can see in the table listed above, Vietnam's CO2 emissions ranked 26th with 247.7 million tons, an increase of 2.57 tonnes per capita in 2019 and variation since 2018.

9. Politics

Vietnam is a communist state. President Nguyen Xuan Phuc became the Head of State, and Prime Minister Pham Minh CHINH became Head of Government in April 2021. The Freedom House Global Score at 19 and Free House Internet Score is at 22 based on a set of methodology questions according to Statista 2021.


Regulatory quality in Vietnam is on a medium level. The rule of law in Vietnam is medium and ranked 98th compared to 209 countries and territories covered by World Bank Worldwide Governance Indicators in 2019.

10. Conclusion

The appendix section brings the report to the close with some detailed citations and data sources used. To get the full Statista Vietnam 2021 Report, please download it. You can tell us or call the hotline if you need any support in downloading the full version.