In order to reduce the sex ratio imbalance at birth, the General Department of Population under the Health Ministry proposed that the Government provide social welfare to families that have two girl children.
For the first time, a proposal was submitted to the Government for approval of a plan to provide support to families that have two daughters, in a serious effort to reduce the country’s gender imbalance.
Dr. Duong Quoc Trong, head of the General Department of Population, said that giving priority to women, assisting families that have two daughters, is a long-time desire of the agency but it has not been implemented.
Trong said the General Department of Population would propose to the Government to consider the plan to reduce the sex ratio imbalance at birth, in which a special solution is giving financial support to families that have only two baby girls. Specifically, these families will be supported with cash and incentives for their daughters for studies, vocational training, employment, and developing self skills.
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Under the plan, the Government will provide a number of benefits to those who have two daughters and comply with the policy that every family should have no more than two children.
The benefits include a payment when a family has a second daughter and support for school tuition and health insurance for both daughters when they grow up, Trong said.
According to an officer of the General Department of Population, in fact, a number of provinces have implemented this policy. For example, Thai Binh Province presents gifts for the families having two daughters while Hoa Binh Province encourages and supports women and girls, especially families that have only daughters.
In addition to giving support for the families having only daughters, the plan also focuses on a number of measures to reduce the sex ratio imbalance, such as reducing the birth rate in areas with high birth rates, the mountainous and disadvantaged areas, strictly prohibiting sex selection, etc.
The average sex ratio of newborns in Vietnam last year was 112.3 males to 100 females. In several provinces in the Red River Delta area, the imbalance is much more serious, with ratio of 130 males to 100 females.
At present, gender imbalance is in many provinces in the country and more volatile. In 2009, Hung Yen and Hai Duong led the country on gender imbalance. In 2011, Quang Binh and Bac Ninh took the lead, with a ratio of 120 boys for every 100 girls.
At a national workshop on gender imbalance organized by the Ministry of Health last November in Hanoi, 45 of the 63 provinces in Vietnam reported that their local sex ratio at birth was becoming increasingly imbalanced in favor of males.
According to the Ministry of Health, without active intervention, the sex ratio at birth in Vietnam will still be imbalanced, with 125 boys for every 100 girls in 2020 and will remain so until 2050.