Public Finance for Children
UNICEF is working to ensure public investments are appropriately targeted at children, so every girl and boy has the opportunity to reach its full potential.
While Viet Nam has made impressive progress against poverty in the past two decades, groups of the population remain at risk. One-in-five children, approximately 5.5 million nationwide, still experience at least two deprivations in education, health, nutrition, shelter, water and sanitation or social inclusion. Higher incidences of child poverty are found amongst ethnic minorities (52 per cent) and in rural areas (26 per cent). Equity is at stake in the transitional lower middle-income country context of Viet Nam, where vulnerability affects much of the population, including children.
It is essential public finance policies are geared towards protecting services for children, even if public sector and household resources are stretched.
Investing in children means maximizing the fiscal space to deliver effective and quality services and programmes to reduce disparities and inequalities affecting children. For disadvantaged children, appropriate government budget allocation and spending is essential. However, evidence gaps have emerged in the public finance management system that hinder budget prioritization and the government’s fulfilment of child rights in financial terms.
UNICEF is working closely with the government to improve transparency, efficiency and equity in budget allocation and spending for children. This means strengthening ministerial capacity in public finance management through prioritizing child rights in budget allocation and utilization in key socio-economic development and sectoral plans at national and sub-national levels for delivery of better results for children.
UNICEF is supporting Viet Nam to identify funding sources, reach consensus on the need to invest more in children and use public finance policies to achieve sustainable progress in fulfillment of children’s rights.
To achieve this, we are engaging a full spectrum of government partners to improve the legal framework and policies related to planning and budget allocation for children, with a focus on enhanced statistical reporting to generate data for action. The voices of Viet Nam’s youth will also articulate the needs of children within discussions to ensure budget planning and allocation create the right conditions for all children to reach their full potential.