Vietnam – officially the Socialist Republic of Vietnam – is the easternmost country on the Indochinese peninsula, in Southeast Asia.
It is bordered by China to the north, Laos to the northwest, and Cambodia to the southwest. Its extensive coastline touches the waters of the South China Sea in most parts and the Gulf of Siam in the south.
Although in the West it is known especially for the events of the Vietnam War, the truth is that it is a culture and a nation with an ancient ancestral history and is currently a country with promising economic potential.
In 2008, Vietnam had a population of 86 116 560 residents; the population density that same year was 261.3 residents / km 2, which places it in the 13th position of the most populated countries in the world and also appears on the list of the so-called Next Eleven economies. According to official figures, its growth has 8.17% in its GDP for 2008, which makes Vietnam the second country in the Far East in rapid economic growth and the first in Southeast Asia.
Since 1990 the birth rate has been declining, currently standing at 16.47 births per 1000 residents. The mortality rate stands at a meager 6.18%, however the infant mortality rate shoots up to 2.36% (in comparison, in Cuba infant mortality has already been reduced to 4%). The net emigration rate is negative, -0.39 emigrants / 1000. The population growth rate is 0.99%. It is estimated that the rate of population growth will be zero before 2020.
Life expectancy is 72 years, 94.3% of the population is literate and the average number of children per woman is 1.89, one of the lowest in Southeast Asia.
The Kinh ethnic group represents 87% of the population and is the main resident of the cities and the plains, leaving the rest of the groups the predominance of the mountainous areas.
50% of those who live in the country are under 25 years of age and the average age of the population is 26.9 years.
- Year 0 = 1 million (in the northern region governed by China).
- Year 1000 = 1.5-3 million, north. About 1 to 1.5 million in the south, in addition to 1 million Cambodian Khmer.
- 1900 = 13.5 million.
- 1939 = 20.3 million.
- 1954 = 30.5 million.
- 1968 = 40.1 million.
- 1975 = 46.6 million.
- 1989 = 64.8 million.
- 1994 = 72.5 million.
- 2000 = 80 million.
Regarding children and young people, Unicef (United Nations Children’s Fund) has stated that since the advent of the socialist government (in 1975), the chances of Vietnamese children to survive and become healthy adults have improved significantly, thanks to enormous progress in vaccination against preventable diseases and better nutrition.
The number of girls and boys going to school has doubled since 1977, resulting in the literacy rate for women increasing from 72% in 1972 to 90% today.
- Khai Dinh’s Tomb
- So Kien Basilica
The official language of the country is Vietnamese (tiếng Việt) and it is written using the Vietnamese alphabet (chữ quốc ngữ), based on the Latin alphabet ; some ethnic groups have their own dialect and even their own writing.
81% of the population is atheist or agnostic. Most religious people profess Buddhism (introduced from India in the 2nd century BC. The Vietnamese also profess Catholicism (introduced at the beginning of the 18th century), Protestantism (since 1911) and Islam. There are also religions indigenous, such as cao dai, joa jao.
Vietnamese new year
Vietnam has an annual holiday that sums up everything that is its cultural identity. This holiday is the Vietnamese New Year, called by them as New Year or Tet. These popular festivals are a mirror of local customs and the prevailing idiosyncrasy.
“Tet” is a word of Chinese origin, and is a phonetic deformation of “Tiet”, which means “set of bamboo stern”, although in a broader sense it means “beginning of a period of the year”.
The Vietnamese Lunar New Year occurs in the last ten days of January or the first twenty days of February, between the winter solstice and the spring equinox. Chinese, French, English (which is expanding), and numerous languages of the hill tribes are also common.
According to programingplease.com, Vietnamese food is characterized by the use of fish sauces and the use of vegetables. “Chả giò” (spring roll), “Gỏi cuốn” (summer roll) and “Phở” (rice noodle soup) are among the most common dishes.
- Quan Họ
- Ca trù
- Hò Huế
- Musical instruments:
- Đàn bầu (monochord).
- Đàn đá (lithophone).
- Cải lương
- Múa rối nước (water puppets).