Photo credit: Plan International.
Child marriage rates
UNICEF 2017 % Married by 15
UNICEF 2017 % Married by 18
* Child marriage prevalence is the percentage of women 20-24 years old who were married or in union before they were 18 years old (UNICEF State of the World’s Children, 2017)
Child marriage varies across regions and ethnic groups, with some groups experiencing rates as high as 70%.
Poverty is a key driver of child marriage in Viet Nam, particularly in ethnic minority communities in rural areas. Gender inequality also drives the practice. In addition, child bride kidnapping has been reported in Viet Nam.
The Law on Marriage and Family in Viet Nam sets the minimum legal age for marriage at 18 for women and 20 for men. However, exceptions can be made with the consent of a parent or a judge.
Action to address child marriage
In 2015, the Prime Minister of Viet Nam approved the “Reduction of Early and Inter-Family Marriage in Ethnic Minorities in the Period 2015-2025” project. The project aims to “prevent and reduce early and inter-family marriage in ethnic minority areas.”
In October 2016, government and UN agencies held a National Conference on Child Marriage to review gaps in policy and provide recommendations.
- UNICEF, State of the World’s Children, 2016
-  General Statistics Office and UNICEF, Viet Nam Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey 2014, Final Report, 2015. Girls aged 15-19 in marriage or union. UNICEF database 2016. Accessed at: http://data.unicef.org/topic/child-protection/child-marriage/ General Statistics Office and UNICEF, Viet Nam Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey 2014, Final Report, 2015.