Expanding access to insurance and savings services in Viet Nam

This study takes a new look at the savings and insurance services available to low income households in Viet Nam. It then analyses the constraints and challenges that restrain the use of these services by low income households.

The rapid economic growth over the past few years has created millions of jobs, improved living standards of millions of Vietnamese people and significantly reduced poverty rates. The strategy of the Government of Viet Nam, expressed in the Socio-Economic Development Plan for 2006-2010, aims to promote further economic growth and social inclusion. One of the targets is to lower the percentage of the population living below the poverty line to 10-11 per cent by 2010. Viet Nam's capacity to achieve this target depends on many factors including to what extent low income households are able to accumulate assets and manage risks.

Vietnamese low income households use various strategies to accumulate assets and manage risks. Cash savings and insurance are important tools for that. However, low income households still have limited access to financial savings and insurance products that meet such asset creation and risk management needs.