Follow us on: 

Job quality undermines youth potentials and national growth

Print Email

Job quality undermines youth potentials and national growthHANOI – The quality of jobs available for young people aged between 15 and 29 is ringing an alarm in the youth labour market in Viet Nam, the first national school-to-work transition survey has shown on the occasion of the International Youth Day (12 August).

The preliminary findings of the survey, carried out by the General Statics Office and the International Labour Organization (ILO) in early 2013, indicated that the impact that low-productive employment among the large youth population has on the growth prospects of the country is a primary concern.

The nation-wide survey showed that poor quality employment impacts more than half of young workers. Nearly eight in ten are in informal employment and half of them are in irregular employment, meaning own-account work or temporary contracts.

According to the survey, which looks at the passage of the young people from end of schooling to the first stable (with work contract duration of more than 12 months) or satisfactory job, over education – or the fact that a degree holder takes up work for which she or he is overqualified – is the other side of the problem. Three in every ten 15-to-29-year-olds is overeducated for their job, making them likely to earn less than they otherwise could have and fail to use the most of their productive potential.

Transition is not an easy path

The survey pointed out that the largest share of the youth population in Viet Nam (59 per cent) has completed their labour market transition to a stable or satisfactory temporary job or self-employment, with males outnumbering females. About 23 per cent of the youngsters have not yet started the transition, mainly because they are still at school while the rest remains "in transition".

Among the "transited" young people, there is an even split between those who have attained stable jobs and those engaged in what they regard as satisfactory self-employment or temporary employment.

Nearly half of those who have completed their labour market transition moved directly from schooling to their current stable or satisfactory job, while the remainder had to experience non-satisfactory temporary employment or work as unpaid family workers before being able to find a better job. The transition path for the latter proved to be extremely long at 58.5 months, or nearly five years.

For the young people who remain "in transition", they are likely to find themselves staying within the category for another long period of time. The data showed that the youth remaining in transition have already spent on average six years struggling to find a stable or satisfactory job.

ILO Viet Nam Country Director Gyorgy Sziraczki said young people in Viet Nam need supports to make their labour market transition smoother, which will help the whole country "unleash their full potentials".

The link between education and training and export growth, economic diversification and the creation of more and better jobs should be strengthened while another set of policies, such as career guidance, job counseling, labour market information and employment services could ease the transition from school to work. The preliminary findings of the survey showed that the most popular job search method for the young people is now through "asking friends, relatives and acquaintances".

"Unless Viet Nam takes advantage of its huge young labour force that will soon pass their prime, it will have to pay long-term costs," said Mr Sziraczki.

The Viet Nam school-to-work transition survey will be released this autumn. It was developed to characterize the specific youth employment challenges and to support policy-makers in designing adequate instruments to help the transition of young people into employment.

In Viet Nam, which is one of the 28 target countries doing the similar poll, the survey will also have a second round planned for 2014.

The survey was introduced as part of the global Work4Youth partnership between the ILO Youth Employment Programme and The MasterCard Foundation. The US$14.6 million project, which will run for five years to mid-2016, aims to strengthen the production of labour market information specific to young people and to work with policy-makers on the interpretation of data.

For more information, please contact:

Tran Quynh Hoa (Ms) | Communication officer | ILO Country Office for Vietnam | 48-50 Nguyen Thai Hoc Street, Hanoi | Tel: (84-4) 37340907 Ext.218 | Fax: (84-4) 37340904 | Mobile: (84) 904 409 787 | Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.




1 December 2017

Michel Sidibé
Executive Director of UNAIDS
Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations

This World AIDS Day, we are highlighting the importance of the right to health and the challenges that people living with and affected by HIV face in fulfilling that right.


Community spaces design contest for an exciting hanoi

Ha Noi, October 17/10/2017 - Aiming at improving the living environment and bringing culture and art to the community towards a better urban future, United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) successfully developed the project “Promote participatory, community-based and youth-led approach in safe, greening public spaces in Hoan Kiem district toward a pro-poor, inclusive and sustainable urban development” (hereinafter called Public Spaces project) under the Block by Block program with Mojang, the makers of the videogame Minecraft.


Deadline for round 1: From 17/10/2017 to 04/11/2017 Extended to 9 November 2017


Harsh punishment for child offenders doesn’t prevent further criminality

The age at which a child, can be held criminally liable is a controversial issue around the world. Within Viet Nam, this issue is currently being grappled with in the Penal Code amendments. Some argue that a "get tough on crime" approach is necessary to punish children to prevent further criminality.

However, international research shows that because of their developmental stages, labelling and treating children as criminals at an early age can have serious negative impacts on their development and successful rehabilitation.


New Year Greetings from the United Nations Resident Coordinator a.i. in Viet Nam


On the occasion of New Year 2017, on behalf of the United Nations family in Viet Nam I wish to reiterate our appreciation and express our warmest wishes to our partners and friends throughout the country. We wish our partners and their families in Viet Nam peace, prosperity, good health and happiness in the coming year.

As we enter the second year of the Sustainable Development Goals era, we look forward to continuing our close cooperation for the sake of Viet Nam’s future development; one which is inclusive, equitable and sustainable, with no one left behind.

Youssouf Abdel-Jelil
United Nations Resident Coordinator a.i. in Viet Nam


UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s message for World AIDS Day, observed on 1 December


Thirty-five years since the emergence of AIDS, the international community can look back with some pride.  But we must also look ahead with resolve and commitment to reach our goal of ending the AIDS epidemic by 2030.

There has been real progress in tackling the disease. More people than ever are on treatment.  Since 2010, the number of children infected through mother to child transmission has dropped by half. Fewer people die of AIDS related causes each year.  And people living with HIV are living longer lives.

The number of people with access to life-saving medicines has doubled over the past five years, now topping 18 million. With the right investments, the world can get on the fast-track to achieve our target of 30 million people on treatment by 2030.  Access to HIV medicines to prevent mother to child transmission is now available to more than 75 per cent of those in need.

RSS Email Subscription

Enter your email address: