Vietnam metro manages to right gender imbalance

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The gender imbalance has disappeared in Ho Chi Minh City with the sex ratio at birth  the number of boy babies to girls declining to 106, health authorities said Monday.


The Department of Health released the statistics at a conference to mark the 10th anniversary of a population ordinance.


The ratio decreased from 123 in 2003 to 106 last year. The normal ratio is 107 or less, the department said.


The ratio for the country is currently 112.


The rate of women who gave birth to a third child and the fertility rate have also declined, the department said.


To Thi Kim Hoa, its deputy director, said at the conference that the working age (15 to 59) population in HCMC is increasing.


In 2005 there were around three million people of working age, and this has risen to more than four million.

The city has a population of around eight million.


Though the city is experiencing a "demographic bonus" as a result, the unemployment rate is also high at 3.2 percent, Hoa said.


The city's population density, at 3,700 people per square meter, is 14 times higher than that of the country, and its population is growing at an estimated 2.5 percent.

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