Vietnam vs. Cambodia


The conquest of Vietnam by France began in 1858 and was completed by 1884. It became part of French Indochina in 1887. Vietnam declared independence after World War II, but France continued to rule until its 1954 defeat by communist forces under Ho Chi MINH. Under the Geneva Accords of 1954, Vietnam was divided into the communist North and anti-communist South. US economic and military aid to South Vietnam grew through the 1960s in an attempt to bolster the government, but US armed forces were withdrawn following a cease-fire agreement in 1973. Two years later, North Vietnamese forces overran the South reuniting the country under communist rule. Despite the return of peace, for over a decade the country experienced little economic growth because of conservative leadership policies, the persecution and mass exodus of individuals - many of them successful South Vietnamese merchants - and growing international isolation. However, since the enactment of Vietnam's "doi moi" (renovation) policy in 1986, Vietnamese authorities have committed to increased economic liberalization and enacted structural reforms needed to modernize the economy and to produce more competitive, export-driven industries. The communist leaders maintain tight control on political expression but have demonstrated some modest steps toward better protection of human rights. The country continues to experience small-scale protests, the vast majority connected to either land-use issues, calls for increased political space, or the lack of equitable mechanisms for resolving disputes. The small-scale protests in the urban areas are often organized by human rights activists, but many occur in rural areas and involve various ethnic minorities such as the Montagnards of the Central Highlands, Hmong in the Northwest Highlands, and the Khmer Krom in the southern delta region.

Most Cambodians consider themselves to be Khmers, descendants of the Angkor Empire that extended over much of Southeast Asia and reached its zenith between the 10th and 13th centuries. Attacks by the Thai and Cham (from present-day Vietnam) weakened the empire, ushering in a long period of decline. The king placed the country under French protection in 1863, and it became part of French Indochina in 1887. Following Japanese occupation in World War II, Cambodia gained full independence from France in 1953. In April 1975, after a seven-year struggle, communist Khmer Rouge forces captured Phnom Penh and evacuated all cities and towns. At least 1.5 million Cambodians died from execution, forced hardships, or starvation during the Khmer Rouge regime under POL POT. A December 1978 Vietnamese invasion drove the Khmer Rouge into the countryside, began a 10-year Vietnamese occupation, and touched off  20 years of civil war.

The 1991 Paris Peace Accords mandated democratic elections and a cease-fire, which was not fully respected by the Khmer Rouge. UN-sponsored elections in 1993 helped restore some semblance of normalcy under a coalition government. Factional fighting in 1997 ended the first coalition government, but a second round of national elections in 1998 led to the formation of another coalition government and renewed political stability. The remaining elements of the Khmer Rouge surrendered in early 1999. Some of the surviving Khmer Rouge leaders were tried for crimes against humanity by a hybrid UN-Cambodian tribunal supported by international assistance. In 2018, the tribunal heard its final cases, but it remains in operation to hear appeals. Elections in July 2003 were relatively peaceful, but it took one year of negotiations between contending political parties before a coalition government was formed. In October 2004, King Norodom SIHANOUK abdicated the throne and his son, Prince Norodom SIHAMONI, was selected to succeed him. Local (Commune Council) elections were held in Cambodia in 2012, with little of the violence that preceded prior elections. National elections in July 2013 were disputed, with the opposition - the Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) - boycotting the National Assembly. The political impasse was ended nearly a year later, with the CNRP agreeing to enter parliament in exchange for commitments by the ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) to electoral and legislative reforms. The CNRP made further gains in local commune elections in June 2017, accelerating sitting Prime Minister Hun SEN’s efforts to marginalize the CNRP before national elections in 2018. Hun Sen arrested CNRP President Kem SOKHA in September 2017. The Supreme Court dissolved the CNRP in November 2017 and banned its leaders from participating in politics for at least five years. The CNRP’s seats in the National Assembly were redistributed to smaller, less influential opposition parties, while all of the CNRP’s 5,007 seats in the commune councils throughout the country were reallocated to the CPP. With the CNRP banned, the CPP swept the 2018 national elections, winning all 125 National Assembly seats and effectively turning the country into a one-party state.


Southeastern Asia, bordering the Gulf of Thailand, Gulf of Tonkin, and South China Sea, as well as China, Laos, and Cambodia
Southeastern Asia, bordering the Gulf of Thailand, between Thailand, Vietnam, and Laos
Geographic coordinates
16 10 N, 107 50 E
13 00 N, 105 00 E
Map references
Southeast Asia
Southeast Asia
total: 331,210 sq km
land: 310,070 sq km
water: 21,140 sq km
total: 181,035 sq km
land: 176,515 sq km
water: 4,520 sq km
Area - comparative
about three times the size of Tennessee; slightly larger than New Mexico
one and a half times the size of Pennsylvania; slightly smaller than Oklahoma
Land boundaries
total: 4,616 km
border countries (3): Cambodia 1158 km, China 1297 km, Laos 2161 km
total: 2,530 km
border countries (3): Laos 555 km, Thailand 817 km, Vietnam 1158 km
3,444 km (excludes islands)
443 km
Maritime claims
territorial sea: 12 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin
territorial sea: 12 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
continental shelf: 200 nm
tropical in south; monsoonal in north with hot, rainy season (May to September) and warm, dry season (October to March)
tropical; rainy, monsoon season (May to November); dry season (December to April); little seasonal temperature variation
low, flat delta in south and north; central highlands; hilly, mountainous in far north and northwest
mostly low, flat plains; mountains in southwest and north
Elevation extremes
mean elevation: 398 m
lowest point: South China Sea 0 m
highest point: Fan Si Pan 3,144 m
mean elevation: 126 m
lowest point: Gulf of Thailand 0 m
highest point: Phnum Aoral 1,810 m
Natural resources
antimony, phosphates, coal, manganese, rare earth elements, bauxite, chromate, offshore oil and gas deposits, timber, hydropower, arable land
oil and gas, timber, gemstones, iron ore, manganese, phosphates, hydropower potential, arable land
Land use
agricultural land: 34.8% (2011 est.)
arable land: 20.6% (2011 est.) / permanent crops: 12.1% (2011 est.) / permanent pasture: 2.1% (2011 est.)
forest: 45% (2011 est.)
other: 20.2% (2011 est.)
agricultural land: 32.1% (2011 est.)
arable land: 22.7% (2011 est.) / permanent crops: 0.9% (2011 est.) / permanent pasture: 8.5% (2011 est.)
forest: 56.5% (2011 est.)
other: 11.4% (2011 est.)
Irrigated land
46,000 sq km (2012)
3,540 sq km (2012)
Natural hazards
occasional typhoons (May to January) with extensive flooding, especially in the Mekong River delta
monsoonal rains (June to November); flooding; occasional droughts
Environment - current issues
logging and slash-and-burn agricultural practices contribute to deforestation and soil degradation; water pollution and overfishing threaten marine life populations; groundwater contamination limits potable water supply; air pollution; growing urban industrialization and population migration are rapidly degrading environment in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City
illegal logging activities throughout the country and strip mining for gems in the western region along the border with Thailand have resulted in habitat loss and declining biodiversity (in particular, destruction of mangrove swamps threatens natural fisheries); soil erosion; in rural areas, most of the population does not have access to potable water; declining fish stocks because of illegal fishing and overfishing; coastal ecosystems choked by sediment washed loose from deforested areas inland
Environment - international agreements
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: Law of the Sea
Geography - note
note 1: extending 1,650 km north to south, the country is only 50 km across at its narrowest point

note 2: Son Doong in Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park is the world's largest cave (greatest cross sectional area) and is the largest known cave passage in the world by volume; it currently measures a total of 38.5 million cu m (about 1.35 billion cu ft); it connects to Thung cave (but not yet officially); when recognized, it will add an additional 1.6 million cu m in volume; Son Doong is so massive that it contains its own jungle, underground river, and localized weather system; clouds form inside the cave and spew out from its exits and two dolines (openings (sinkhole skylights) created by collapsed ceilings that allow sunlight to stream in)

a land of paddies and forests dominated by the Mekong River and Tonle Sap (Southeast Asia's largest freshwater lake)
Population distribution
though it has one of the highest population densities in the world, the population is not evenly dispersed; clustering is heaviest along the South China Sea and Gulf of Tonkin, with the Mekong Delta (in the south) and the Red River Valley (in the north) having the largest concentrations of people
population concentrated in the southeast, particularly in and around the capital of Phnom Penh; further distribution is linked closely to the Tonle Sap and Mekong Rivers


98,721,275 (July 2020 est.)
16,926,984 (July 2020 est.)
Age structure
0-14 years: 22.61% (male 11,733,704/female 10,590,078)
15-24 years: 15.22% (male 7,825,859/female 7,202,716)
25-54 years: 45.7% (male 22,852,429/female 22,262,566)
55-64 years: 9.55% (male 4,412,111/female 5,016,880)
65 years and over: 6.91% (male 2,702,963/female 4,121,969) (2020 est.)
0-14 years: 30.18% (male 2,582,427/female 2,525,619)
15-24 years: 17.28% (male 1,452,784/female 1,472,769)
25-54 years: 41.51% (male 3,442,051/female 3,584,592)
55-64 years: 6.44% (male 476,561/female 612,706)
65 years and over: 4.59% (male 287,021/female 490,454) (2020 est.)
Median age
total: 31.9 years
male: 30.8 years
female: 33 years (2020 est.)
total: 26.4 years
male: 25.6 years
female: 27.2 years (2020 est.)
Population growth rate
0.84% (2020 est.)
1.4% (2020 est.)
Birth rate
14.5 births/1,000 population (2020 est.)
21.3 births/1,000 population (2020 est.)
Death rate
6 deaths/1,000 population (2020 est.)
7.3 deaths/1,000 population (2020 est.)
Net migration rate
-0.3 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2020 est.)
-0.3 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2020 est.)
Sex ratio
at birth: 1.09 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.11 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.09 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1.03 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.88 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.66 male(s)/female
total population: 100.7 male(s)/female (2020 est.)
at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 0.99 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 0.96 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.78 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.59 male(s)/female
total population: 94.9 male(s)/female (2020 est.)
Infant mortality rate
total: 15.7 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 16 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 15.3 deaths/1,000 live births (2020 est.)
total: 43.7 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 49.8 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 37.3 deaths/1,000 live births (2020 est.)
Life expectancy at birth
total population: 74.4 years
male: 71.9 years
female: 77.1 years (2020 est.)
total population: 65.9 years
male: 63.4 years
female: 68.6 years (2020 est.)
Total fertility rate
1.77 children born/woman (2020 est.)
2.39 children born/woman (2020 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate
0.3% (2019 est.)
0.6% (2019 est.)
noun: Vietnamese (singular and plural)
adjective: Vietnamese
noun: Cambodian(s)
adjective: Cambodian
Ethnic groups
Kinh (Viet) 85.7%, Tay 1.9%, Thai 1.8%, Muong 1.5%, Khmer 1.5%, Mong 1.2%, Nung 1.1%, Hoa 1%, other 4.3% (2009 est.)

note: 54 ethnic groups are recognized by the Vietnamese Government

Khmer 97.6%, Cham 1.2%, Chinese 0.1%, Vietnamese 0.1%, other 0.9% (2013 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS
230,000 (2019 est.)
73,000 (2019 est.)
Buddhist 7.9%, Catholic 6.6%, Hoa Hao 1.7%, Cao Dai 0.9%, Protestant 0.9%, Muslim 0.1%, none 81.8% (2009 est.)
Buddhist (official) 97.9%, Muslim 1.1%, Christian 0.5%, other 0.6% (2013 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths
5,000 (2019 est.)
1,300 (2019 est.)
Vietnamese (official), English (increasingly favored as a second language), some French, Chinese, and Khmer, mountain area languages (Mon-Khmer and Malayo-Polynesian)
Khmer (official) 96.3%, other 3.7% (2008 est.)
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 95%
male: 96.5%
female: 93.6% (2018)
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 80.5%
male: 86.5%
female: 75% (2015)
Major infectious diseases
degree of risk: very high (2020)
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever
vectorborne diseases: dengue fever, malaria, and Japanese encephalitis
degree of risk: very high (2020)
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever
vectorborne diseases: dengue fever, Japanese encephalitis, and malaria
Education expenditures
5.7% of GDP (2013)
1.9% of GDP (2014)
urban population: 37.3% of total population (2020)
rate of urbanization: 2.98% annual rate of change (2015-20 est.)
urban population: 24.2% of total population (2020)
rate of urbanization: 3.25% annual rate of change (2015-20 est.)
Drinking water source
improved: urban: 98.6% of population
rural: 92.6% of population
total: 94.7% of population
unimproved: urban: 1.4% of population
rural: 7.4% of population
total: 5.3% of population (2017 est.)
improved: urban: 98.4% of population
rural: 77.8% of population
total: 80.3% of population
unimproved: urban: 1.6% of population
rural: 22.2% of population
total: 19.7% of population (2017 est.)
Sanitation facility access
improved: urban: 96.9% of population
rural: 82.1% of population
total: 87.3% of population
unimproved: urban: 3.1% of population
rural: 17.9% of population
total: 12.7% of population (2017 est.)
improved: urban: 100% of population
rural: 55.5% of population
total: 65.7% of population
unimproved: urban: 0% of population
rural: 44.5% of population
total: 34.3% of population (2017 est.)
Major cities - population
8.602 million Ho Chi Minh City, 4.678 million HANOI (capital), 1.618 million Can Tho, 1.300 million Hai Phong, 1.125 million Da Nang, 1.013 million Bien Hoa (2020)
2.078 million PHNOM PENH (capital) (2020)
Maternal mortality rate
43 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)
160 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight
13.4% (2017)
24.1% (2014)
Health expenditures
5.5% (2017)
5.9% (2017)
Physicians density
0.83 physicians/1,000 population (2016)
0.19 physicians/1,000 population (2014)
Hospital bed density
2.6 beds/1,000 population (2014)
1.9 beds/1,000 population (2016)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate
2.1% (2016)
3.9% (2016)
Contraceptive prevalence rate
77.5% (2016)
56.3% (2014)
Dependency ratios
total dependency ratio: 45.1
youth dependency ratio: 33.6
elderly dependency ratio: 11.4
potential support ratio: 8.8 (2020 est.)
total dependency ratio: 55.7
youth dependency ratio: 48.2
elderly dependency ratio: 7.6
potential support ratio: 13.2 (2020 est.)


Country name
conventional long form: Socialist Republic of Vietnam
conventional short form: Vietnam
local long form: Cong Hoa Xa Hoi Chu Nghia Viet Nam
local short form: Viet Nam
abbreviation: SRV
etymology: "Viet nam" translates as "Viet south," where "Viet" is an ethnic self identification dating to a second century B.C. kingdom and "nam" refers to its location in relation to other Viet kingdoms
conventional long form: Kingdom of Cambodia
conventional short form: Cambodia
local long form: Preahreacheanachakr Kampuchea (phonetic transliteration)
local short form: Kampuchea
former: Khmer Republic, Democratic Kampuchea, People's Republic of Kampuchea, State of Cambodia
etymology: the English name Cambodia is an anglicization of the French Cambodge, which is the French transliteration of the native name Kampuchea
Government type
communist state
parliamentary constitutional monarchy
name: Hanoi (Ha Noi)
geographic coordinates: 21 02 N, 105 51 E
time difference: UTC+7 (12 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
etymology: the city has had many names in its history going back to A.D. 1010 when it first became the capital of imperial Vietnam; in 1831, it received its current name of Ha Noi, meaning "between the rivers," which refers to its geographic location
name: Phnom Penh
geographic coordinates: 11 33 N, 104 55 E
time difference: UTC+7 (12 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
etymology: Phnom Penh translates as "Penh's Hill" in Khmer; the city takes its name from the present Wat Phnom (Hill Temple), the tallest religious structure in the city, whose establishment, according to legend, was inspired in the 14th century by a pious nun, Daun PENH
Administrative divisions

58 provinces (tinh, singular and plural) and 5 municipalities (thanh pho, singular and plural)

provinces: An Giang, Bac Giang, Bac Kan, Bac Lieu, Bac Ninh, Ba Ria-Vung Tau, Ben Tre, Binh Dinh, Binh Duong, Binh Phuoc, Binh Thuan, Ca Mau, Cao Bang, Dak Lak, Dak Nong, Dien Bien, Dong Nai, Dong Thap, Gia Lai, Ha Giang, Ha Nam, Ha Tinh, Hai Duong, Hau Giang, Hoa Binh, Hung Yen, Khanh Hoa, Kien Giang, Kon Tum, Lai Chau, Lam Dong, Lang Son, Lao Cai, Long An, Nam Dinh, Nghe An, Ninh Binh, Ninh Thuan, Phu Tho, Phu Yen, Quang Binh, Quang Nam, Quang Ngai, Quang Ninh, Quang Tri, Soc Trang, Son La, Tay Ninh, Thai Binh, Thai Nguyen, Thanh Hoa, Thua Thien-Hue, Tien Giang, Tra Vinh, Tuyen Quang, Vinh Long, Vinh Phuc, Yen Bai

municipalities: Can Tho, Da Nang, Ha Noi (Hanoi), Hai Phong, Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)

24 provinces (khett, singular and plural) and 1 municipality (krong, singular and plural)

provinces: Banteay Meanchey, Battambang, Kampong Cham, Kampong Chhnang, Kampong Speu, Kampong Thom, Kampot, Kandal, Kep, Koh Kong, Kratie, Mondolkiri, Oddar Meanchey, Pailin, Preah Sihanouk, Preah Vihear, Prey Veng, Pursat, Ratanakiri, Siem Reap, Stung Treng, Svay Rieng, Takeo, Tbong Khmum

municipalities: Phnom Penh (Phnum Penh)

2 September 1945 (from France)
9 November 1953 (from France)
National holiday
Independence Day (National Day), 2 September (1945)
Independence Day, 9 November (1953)
history: several previous; latest adopted 28 November 2013, effective 1 January 2014
amendments: proposed by the president, by the National Assembly’s Standing Committee, or by at least two thirds of the National Assembly membership; a decision to draft an amendment requires approval by at least a two-thirds majority vote of the Assembly membership, followed by the formation of a constitutional drafting committee to write a draft and collect citizens’ opinions; passage requires at least two-thirds majority of the Assembly membership; the Assembly can opt to conduct a referendum
history: previous 1947; latest promulgated 21 September 1993
amendments: proposed by the monarch, by the prime minister, or by the president of the National Assembly if supported by one fourth of the Assembly membership; passage requires two-thirds majority of the Assembly membership; constitutional articles on the multiparty democratic form of government and the monarchy cannot be amended; amended 1999, 2008, 2014, 2018
Legal system
18 years of age; universal
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch
chief of state: President Nguyen Phu TRONG (since 23 October 2018); note - President Tran Dai QUANG (since 2 April 2016) died on 21 September 2018
head of government: Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan PHUC (since 7 April 2016); Deputy Prime Ministers Truong Hoa BINH (since 9 April 2016), Vuong Dinh HUE (since 9 April 2016), Vu Duc DAM (since 13 November 2013), Trinh Dinh DUNG (since 9 April 2016), Pham Binh MINH (since 13 November 2013)
cabinet: Cabinet proposed by prime minister confirmed by the National Assembly and appointed by the president
elections/appointments: president indirectly elected by National Assembly from among its members for a single 5-year term; election last held on 2 April 2016 (next to be held in spring 2021); prime minister recommended by the president and confirmed by National Assembly; deputy prime ministers confirmed by the National Assembly and appointed by the president
election results: Nguyen Phu TRONG (CPV) elected president; percent of National Assembly vote - 99.8%; Nguyen Xuan PHUC elected prime minister; percent of National Assembly vote - 91%
chief of state: King Norodom SIHAMONI (since 29 October 2004)
head of government: Prime Minister HUN SEN (since 14 January 1985); Permanent Deputy Prime Minister MEN SAM AN (since 25 September 2008); Deputy Prime Ministers SAR KHENG (since 3 February 1992), TEA BANH, Gen., HOR NAMHONG, (since 16 July 2004), BIN CHHIN (since 5 September 2007), YIM CHHAI LY (since 24 September 2008), KE KIMYAN (since 12 March 2009), AUN PORNMONIROTH (since 24 September 2012), Prak SOKONN, CHEA SOPHARA (since 5 April 2016)
cabinet: Council of Ministers named by the prime minister and appointed by the monarch
elections/appointments: monarch chosen by the 9-member Royal Council of the Throne from among all eligible males of royal descent; following legislative elections, a member of the majority party or majority coalition named prime minister by the Chairman of the National Assembly and appointed by the monarch
Legislative branch
description: unicameral National Assembly or Quoc Hoi (500 seats - number following 2016 election - 494; number of current serving members - 484; members directly elected in multi-seat constituencies by absolute majority vote; members serve 5-year terms)
elections: last held on 22 May 2016 (next to be held in May 2021)
election results: percent of vote by party -CPV 95.8%, non-party members 4.2%; seats by party - CPV 474, non-party CPV-approved 20, self-nominated 2; note - 494 candidates elected, 2 CPV candidates-elect were disqualified; composition - men 364, women 122, percent of women 26.6%
description: bicameral Parliament of Cambodia consists of:
Senate (62 seats; 58 indirectly elected by parliamentarians and commune councils, 2 indirectly elected by the National Assembly, and 2 appointed by the monarch; members serve 6-year terms)
National Assembly (125 seats; members directly elected in multi-seat constituencies by proportional representation vote; members serve 5-year terms)
Senate - last held on 25 February 2018 (next to be held in 2024); National Assembly - last held on 29 July 2018 (next to be held in 2023)
election results:  
Senate - percent of vote by party - CPP 96%, FUNCINPEC 2.4%, KNUP 1.6%; seats by party - CPP 58; composition - men 53, women 9, percent of women 14.5%
National Assembly - percent of vote by party - CPP 76.9%, FUNCINPEC 5.9%, LDP 4.9%, Khmer Will Party 3.4%, other 8.9%; seats by party - CPP 125; composition - men 100, women 25, percent of women 20%; note - total Parliament of Cambodia percent of women 18.2%
Judicial branch
highest courts: Supreme People's Court (consists of the chief justice and 13 judges)
judge selection and term of office: chief justice elected by the National Assembly upon the recommendation of the president for a 5-year, renewable term; deputy chief justice appointed by the president from among the judges for a 5-year term; judges appointed by the president and confirmed by the National Assembly for 5-year terms
subordinate courts: High Courts (administrative, civil, criminal, economic, labor, family, juvenile); provincial courts; district courts; Military Court; note - the National Assembly Standing Committee can establish special tribunals upon the recommendation of the chief justice
highest courts: Supreme Council (organized into 5- and 9-judge panels and includes a court chief and deputy chief); Constitutional Court (consists of 9 members); note - in 1997, the Cambodian Government requested UN assistance in establishing trials to prosecute former Khmer Rouge senior leaders for crimes against humanity committed during the 1975-1979 Khmer Rouge regime; the Extraordinary Chambers of the Courts of Cambodia (also called the Khmer Rouge Tribunal) was established in 2006 and began hearings for the first case in 2009; court proceedings remain ongoing in 2019
judge selection and term of office: Supreme Court and Constitutional Council judge candidates recommended by the Supreme Council of Magistracy, a 17-member body chaired by the monarch and includes other high-level judicial officers; judges of both courts appointed by the monarch; Supreme Court judges appointed for life; Constitutional Council judges appointed for 9-year terms with one-third of the court renewed every 3 years
subordinate courts: Appellate Court; provincial and municipal courts; Military Court
Political parties and leaders
Communist Party of Vietnam or CPV [Nguyen Phu TRONG]

note: other parties proscribed

Cambodia National Rescue Party or CNRP [KHEM SOKHA] (dissolved by the Cambodian Supreme Court in November 2017; formed from a 2012 merger of the Sam Rangsi Party or SRP and the former Human Rights Party or HRP [KHEM SOKHA, also spelled KEM SOKHA])
Cambodian Nationality Party or CNP [SENG SOKHENG]
Cambodian People's Party or CPP [HUN SEN]
Khmer Economic Development Party or KEDP [HUON REACH CHAMROEUN]
Khmer National Unity Party or KNUP [NHEK BUN CHHAY]
Khmer Will Party [KONG MONIKA]
League for Democracy Party or LDP [KHEM Veasna]
National United Front for an Independent, Neutral, Peaceful, and Cooperative Cambodia or FUNCINPEC [Prince NORODOM RANARIDDH]
International organization participation
Diplomatic representation in the US
Ambassador Ha Kim NGOC (since 17 September 2018)
chancery: 1233 20th Street NW, Suite 400, Washington, DC 20036
telephone: [1] (202) 861-0737
FAX: [1] (202) 861-0917
consulate(s) general: Houston, San Francisco
consulate(s): New York
Ambassador CHUM SOUNRY (since 17 September 2018)
chancery: 4530 16th Street NW, Washington, DC 20011
telephone: [1] (202) 726-7742
FAX: [1] (202) 726-8381
Diplomatic representation from the US
chief of mission: Ambassador Daniel KRITENBRINK (since 6 November 2017)
telephone: [84] (24) 3850-5000
embassy: 7 Lang Ha Street, Hanoi
mailing address: 7 Lang Ha Street, Ba Dinh District, Hanoi; 4550 Hanoi Place, Washington, DC 20521-4550
FAX: [84] (24) 3850-5010
consulate(s) general: Ho Chi Minh City
chief of mission: Ambassador Patrick MURPHY (since 23 October 2019)
telephone: [855] (23) 728-000
embassy: #1, Street 96, Sangkat Wat Phnom, Khan Daun Penh, Phnom Penh
mailing address: Unit 8166, Box P, APO AP 96546
FAX: [855] (23) 728-600
Flag description
red field with a large yellow five-pointed star in the center; red symbolizes revolution and blood, the five-pointed star represents the five elements of the populace - peasants, workers, intellectuals, traders, and soldiers - that unite to build socialism
three horizontal bands of blue (top), red (double width), and blue with a white, three-towered temple, representing Angkor Wat, outlined in black in the center of the red band; red and blue are traditional Cambodian colors

note: only national flag to prominently incorporate an actual identifiable building into its design (a few other national flags - those of Afghanistan, San Marino, Portugal, and Spain - show small generic buildings as part of their coats of arms on the flag)

National anthem
name: "Tien quan ca" (The Song of the Marching Troops)
lyrics/music: Nguyen Van CAO

note: adopted as the national anthem of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam in 1945; it became the national anthem of the unified Socialist Republic of Vietnam in 1976; although it consists of two verses, only the first is used as the official anthem

name: "Nokoreach" (Royal Kingdom)
lyrics/music: CHUON NAT/F. PERRUCHOT and J. JEKYLL

note: adopted 1941, restored 1993; the anthem, based on a Cambodian folk tune, was restored after the defeat of the Communist regime

International law organization participation
has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCt
accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
National symbol(s)
yellow, five-pointed star on red field; lotus blossom; national colors: red, yellow
Angkor Wat temple, kouprey (wild ox); national colors: red, blue
citizenship by birth: no
citizenship by descent only: at least one parent must be a citizen of Vietnam
dual citizenship recognized: no
residency requirement for naturalization: 5 years
citizenship by birth: no
citizenship by descent only: at least one parent must be a citizen of Cambodia
dual citizenship recognized: yes
residency requirement for naturalization: 7 years


Economy - overview

Vietnam is a densely populated developing country that has been transitioning since 1986 from the rigidities of a centrally planned, highly agrarian economy to a more industrial and market based economy, and it has raised incomes substantially. Vietnam exceeded its 2017 GDP growth target of 6.7% with growth of 6.8%, primarily due to unexpected increases in domestic demand, and strong manufacturing exports.

Vietnam has a young population, stable political system, commitment to sustainable growth, relatively low inflation, stable currency, strong FDI inflows, and strong manufacturing sector. In addition, the country is committed to continuing its global economic integration. Vietnam joined the WTO in January 2007 and concluded several free trade agreements in 2015-16, including the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (which the EU has not yet ratified), the Korean Free Trade Agreement, and the Eurasian Economic Union Free Trade Agreement. In 2017, Vietnam successfully chaired the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Conference with its key priorities including inclusive growth, innovation, strengthening small and medium enterprises, food security, and climate change. Seeking to diversify its opportunities, Vietnam also signed the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for the Transpacific Partnership in 2018 and continued to pursue the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership.

To continue its trajectory of strong economic growth, the government acknowledges the need to spark a ‘second wave’ of reforms, including reforming state-owned-enterprises, reducing red tape, increasing business sector transparency, reducing the level of non-performing loans in the banking sector, and increasing financial sector transparency. Vietnam’s public debt to GDP ratio is nearing the government mandated ceiling of 65%.

In 2016, Vietnam cancelled its civilian nuclear energy development program, citing public concerns about safety and the high cost of the program; it faces growing pressure on energy infrastructure. Overall, the country’s infrastructure fails to meet the needs of an expanding middle class. Vietnam has demonstrated a commitment to sustainable growth over the last several years, but despite the recent speed-up in economic growth the government remains cautious about the risk of external shocks.

Cambodia has experienced strong economic growth over the last decade; GDP grew at an average annual rate of over 8% between 2000 and 2010 and about 7% since 2011. The tourism, garment, construction and real estate, and agriculture sectors accounted for the bulk of growth. Around 700,000 people, the majority of whom are women, are employed in the garment and footwear sector. An additional 500,000 Cambodians are employed in the tourism sector, and a further 200,000 people in construction. Tourism has continued to grow rapidly with foreign arrivals exceeding 2 million per year in 2007 and reaching 5.6 million visitors in 2017. Mining also is attracting some investor interest and the government has touted opportunities for mining bauxite, gold, iron and gems.


Still, Cambodia remains one of the poorest countries in Asia, and long-term economic development remains a daunting challenge, inhibited by corruption, limited human resources, high income inequality, and poor job prospects. According to the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the percentage of the population living in poverty decreased to 13.5% in 2016. More than 50% of the population is less than 25 years old. The population lacks education and productive skills, particularly in the impoverished countryside, which also lacks basic infrastructure.


The World Bank in 2016 formally reclassified Cambodia as a lower middle-income country as a result of continued rapid economic growth over the past several years. Cambodia’s graduation from a low-income country will reduce its eligibility for foreign assistance and will challenge the government to seek new sources of financing. The Cambodian Government has been working with bilateral and multilateral donors, including the Asian Development Bank, the World Bank and IMF, to address the country's many pressing needs; more than 20% of the government budget will come from donor assistance in 2018. A major economic challenge for Cambodia over the next decade will be fashioning an economic environment in which the private sector can create enough jobs to handle Cambodia's demographic imbalance.


Textile exports, which accounted for 68% of total exports in 2017, have driven much of Cambodia’s growth over the past several years. The textile sector relies on exports to the United States and European Union, and Cambodia’s dependence on its comparative advantage in textile production is a key vulnerability for the economy, especially because Cambodia has continued to run a current account deficit above 9% of GDP since 2014.

GDP (purchasing power parity)
$648.7 billion (2017 est.)
$607.4 billion (2016 est.)
$571.9 billion (2015 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars

$64.21 billion (2017 est.)
$60.09 billion (2016 est.)
$56.18 billion (2015 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars

GDP - real growth rate
6.8% (2017 est.)
7.16% (2017 est.)
6.2% (2016 est.)
6.9% (2017 est.)
7% (2016 est.)
7% (2015 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)
$6,900 (2017 est.)
$6,600 (2016 est.)
$6,200 (2015 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars

$4,000 (2017 est.)
$3,800 (2016 est.)
$3,600 (2015 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars

GDP - composition by sector
agriculture: 15.3% (2017 est.)
industry: 33.3% (2017 est.)
services: 51.3% (2017 est.)
agriculture: 25.3% (2017 est.)
industry: 32.8% (2017 est.)
services: 41.9% (2017 est.)
Population below poverty line
8% (2017 est.)
16.5% (2016 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share
lowest 10%: 2.7%
highest 10%: 26.8% (2014)
lowest 10%: 2%
highest 10%: 28% (2013 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices)
3.5% (2017 est.)
2.7% (2016 est.)
2.9% (2017 est.)
3% (2016 est.)
Labor force
54.659 million (2019 est.)
8.913 million (2017 est.)
Labor force - by occupation
agriculture: 40.3%
industry: 25.7%
services: 34% (2017)
agriculture: 48.7%
industry: 19.9%
services: 31.5% (2013 est.)
Unemployment rate
3.11% (2018 est.)
2.2% (2017 est.)
0.3% (2017 est.)
0.2% (2016 est.)

note: high underemployment, according to official statistics

Distribution of family income - Gini index
34.8 (2014)
37.6 (2008)
37.9 (2008 est.)
41.9 (2004 est.)
revenues: 54.59 billion (2017 est.)
expenditures: 69.37 billion (2017 est.)
revenues: 3.947 billion (2017 est.)
expenditures: 4.354 billion (2017 est.)
food processing, garments, shoes, machine-building; mining, coal, steel; cement, chemical fertilizer, glass, tires, oil, mobile phones
tourism, garments, construction, rice milling, fishing, wood and wood products, rubber, cement, gem mining, textiles
Industrial production growth rate
8% (2017 est.)
10.6% (2017 est.)
Agriculture - products
rice, coffee, rubber, tea, pepper, soybeans, cashews, sugar cane, peanuts, bananas; pork; poultry; seafood
rice, rubber, corn, vegetables, cashews, cassava (manioc, tapioca), silk
$214.1 billion (2017 est.)
$176.6 billion (2016 est.)
$11.42 billion (2017 est.)
$10.07 billion (2016 est.)
Exports - commodities
clothes, shoes, electronics, seafood, crude oil, rice, coffee, wooden products, machinery
clothing, timber, rubber, rice, fish, tobacco, footwear
Exports - partners
US 20.1%, China 14.5%, Japan 8%, South Korea 6.8% (2017)
US 21.5%, UK 9%, Germany 8.6%, Japan 7.6%, China 6.9%, Canada 6.7%, Spain 4.7%, Belgium 4.5% (2017)
$202.6 billion (2017 est.)
$162.6 billion (2016 est.)
$14.37 billion (2017 est.)
$12.65 billion (2016 est.)
Imports - commodities
machinery and equipment, petroleum products, steel products, raw materials for the clothing and shoe industries, electronics, plastics, automobiles
petroleum products, cigarettes, gold, construction materials, machinery, motor vehicles, pharmaceutical products
Imports - partners
China 25.8%, South Korea 20.5%, Japan 7.8%, Thailand 4.9% (2017)
China 34.1%, Singapore 12.8%, Thailand 12.4%, Vietnam 10.1% (2017)
Debt - external
$96.58 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$84.34 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$11.87 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$10.3 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Exchange rates
dong (VND) per US dollar -
22,425 (2017 est.)
22,159 (2016 est.)
22,355 (2015 est.)
21,909 (2014 est.)
21,189 (2013 est.)
riels (KHR) per US dollar -
4,055 (2017 est.)
4,058.7 (2016 est.)
4,058.7 (2015 est.)
4,067.8 (2014 est.)
4,037.5 (2013 est.)
Fiscal year
calendar year
calendar year
Public debt
58.5% of GDP (2017 est.)
59.9% of GDP (2016 est.)

note: official data; data cover general government debt and include debt instruments issued (or owned) by government entities other than the treasury; the data include treasury debt held by foreign entities; the data include debt issued by subnational entities, as well as intragovernmental debt; intragovernmental debt consists of treasury borrowings from surpluses in the social funds, such as for retirement, medical care, and unemployment; debt instruments for the social funds are not sold at public auctions

30.4% of GDP (2017 est.)
29.1% of GDP (2016 est.)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold
$49.5 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$36.91 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$12.2 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$9.122 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Current Account Balance
$12.478 billion (2019 est.)
$5.769 billion (2018 est.)
-$1.871 billion (2017 est.)
-$1.731 billion (2016 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate)
$220.4 billion (2017 est.)
$22.09 billion (2017 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home
$129.5 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$293.2 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$29.17 billion (2014 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares
$156.7 billion (29 December 2017 est.)
$87.95 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$52.39 billion (31 December 2015 est.)


Central bank discount rate
4.25% (7 October 2017)
15% (31 December 2011)
NA% (31 December 2012)
5.25% (31 December 2007)
Commercial bank prime lending rate
7.07% (31 December 2017 est.)
6.96% (31 December 2016 est.)
10.92% (31 December 2017 est.)
11.36% (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of domestic credit
$313 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$277.3 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$16.53 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$14.27 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of narrow money
$85.96 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$73.48 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$2.202 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$1.748 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of broad money
$85.96 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$73.48 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$2.202 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$1.748 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Taxes and other revenues
24.8% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
17.9% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)
-6.7% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
-1.8% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24
total: 6.9%
male: 6%
female: 7.9% (2018 est.)
total: 1.1%
male: 1%
female: 1.2% (2016 est.)
GDP - composition, by end use
household consumption: 66.9% (2017 est.)
government consumption: 6.5% (2017 est.)
investment in fixed capital: 24.2% (2017 est.)
investment in inventories: 2.8% (2017 est.)
exports of goods and services: 100% (2017 est.)
imports of goods and services: -101% (2017 est.)
household consumption: 76% (2017 est.)
government consumption: 5.4% (2017 est.)
investment in fixed capital: 21.8% (2017 est.)
investment in inventories: 1.2% (2017 est.)
exports of goods and services: 68.6% (2017 est.)
imports of goods and services: -73% (2017 est.)
Gross national saving
29% of GDP (2017 est.)
29.5% of GDP (2016 est.)
27.5% of GDP (2015 est.)
13.7% of GDP (2017 est.)
14.3% of GDP (2016 est.)
13.4% of GDP (2015 est.)


Electricity - production
158.2 billion kWh (2016 est.)
5.21 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - consumption
143.2 billion kWh (2016 est.)
5.857 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - exports
713 million kWh (2017 est.)
0 kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - imports
2.733 billion kWh (2016 est.)
1.583 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Oil - production
242,000 bbl/day (2018 est.)
0 bbl/day (2018 est.)
Oil - imports
0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Oil - exports
324,600 bbl/day (2015 est.)
0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Oil - proved reserves
4.4 billion bbl (1 January 2018 est.)
0 bbl (1 January 2018 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves
699.4 billion cu m (1 January 2018 est.)
0 cu m (1 January 2014 est.)
Natural gas - production
8.098 billion cu m (2017 est.)
0 cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - consumption
8.098 billion cu m (2017 est.)
0 cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - exports
0 cu m (2017 est.)
0 cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - imports
0 cu m (2017 est.)
0 cu m (2017 est.)
Electricity - installed generating capacity
40.77 million kW (2016 est.)
1.697 million kW (2016 est.)
Electricity - from fossil fuels
56% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
35% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants
43% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
63% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Electricity - from nuclear fuels
0% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
0% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Electricity - from other renewable sources
1% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
2% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Refined petroleum products - production
153,800 bbl/day (2015 est.)
0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - consumption
438,000 bbl/day (2016 est.)
45,000 bbl/day (2016 est.)
Refined petroleum products - exports
25,620 bbl/day (2015 est.)
0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - imports
282,800 bbl/day (2015 est.)
43,030 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy
235.3 million Mt (2017 est.)
10.55 million Mt (2017 est.)
Electricity access
electrification - total population: 100% (2019)
population without electricity: 4 million (2019)
electrification - total population: 75% (2019)
electrification - urban areas: 100% (2019)
electrification - rural areas: 67% (2019)


Telephones - main lines in use
total subscriptions: 3,710,210
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 3.79 (2019 est.)
total subscriptions: 56,749
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: less than 1 (2019 est.)
Telephones - mobile cellular
total subscriptions: 138,256,733
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 141.23 (2019 est.)
total subscriptions: 21,684,767
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 129.92 (2019 est.)
Internet country code
Internet users
total: 68,267,875
percent of population: 70.35% (July 2018 est.)
total: 6,579,808
percent of population: 40% (July 2018 est.)
Telecommunication systems
general assessment: despite being a communist country there are plans to part privatize the state’s holdings in telecom companies as well as a large number of other enterprises; competition is thriving in the market place; mobile dominates over fixed-line; FttH market growing, as is e-commerce; govt. is the driving force for growth and moving towards commercializing 5G services with test licenses issued in 2019; 5 major operators; Ho Chi Minh City to become the first smart city in Vietnam with cloud computing infrastructure, big data, data centers and security-monitoring centers (2020)
domestic: all provincial exchanges are digitalized and connected to Hanoi, Da Nang, and Ho Chi Minh City by fiber-optic cable or microwave radio relay networks; main lines have been increased, and the use of mobile telephones is growing rapidly; fixed-line 4 per 100 and mobile-cellular 141 per 100 (2019)
international: country code - 84; landing points for the SeaMeWe-3, APG, SJC2, AAE-1, AAG and the TGN-IA submarine cable system providing connectivity to Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Asia, Southeast Asia, Australia, and the US; satellite earth stations - 2 Intersputnik (Indian Ocean region) (2020)
note: the COVID-19 outbreak is negatively impacting telecommunications production and supply chains globally; consumer spending on telecom devices and services has also slowed due to the pandemic's effect on economies worldwide; overall progress towards improvements in all facets of the telecom industry - mobile, fixed-line, broadband, submarine cable and satellite - has moderated
general assessment: well on its way to rollout 5G services, Chinese company Huawei dealing with the infrastructure for the 5G rollout; mobile-cellular phone systems are widely used in urban areas to bypass deficiencies in the fixed-line network; mobile-phone coverage is rapidly spreading in rural areas; competition among mobile operators strong; about 50% of Cambodians own at least one smart phone; in 2018, the MPTC began a free Wi-Fi service for visitors and residents of Phnom Penh, in selected parks around the city customers can access free Wi-Fi services; fixed broadband penetration is predicted to reach over 2% by 2023; in 2021, Cambodia hopes to launch it first communications satellite into orbit (2020)
domestic: fixed-line connections stand at about 1 per 100 persons and declining; mobile-cellular usage, aided by competition among service providers, has increased to about 130 per 100 persons (2019)
international: country code - 855; landing points for MCT and AAE-1 via submarine cables providing communication to Asia, the Middle East, Europe and Africa; satellite earth station - 1 Intersputnik (Indian Ocean region) (2019)
note: the COVID-19 outbreak is negatively impacting telecommunications production and supply chains globally; consumer spending on telecom devices and services has also slowed due to the pandemic's effect on economies worldwide; overall progress towards improvements in all facets of the telecom industry - mobile, fixed-line, broadband, submarine cable and satellite - has moderated
Broadband - fixed subscriptions
total: 12,994,451
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 13 (2018 est.)
total: 166,200
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 1 (2018 est.)
Broadcast media
government controls all broadcast media exercising oversight through the Ministry of Information and Communication (MIC); government-controlled national TV provider, Vietnam Television (VTV), operates a network of several channels with regional broadcasting centers; programming is relayed nationwide via a network of provincial and municipal TV stations; law limits access to satellite TV but many households are able to access foreign programming via home satellite equipment; government-controlled Voice of Vietnam, the national radio broadcaster, broadcasts on several channels and is repeated on AM, FM, and shortwave stations throughout Vietnam (2018)
mixture of state-owned, joint public-private, and privately owned broadcast media; 27 TV broadcast stations with most operating on multiple channels, including 1 state-operated station broadcasting from multiple locations, 11 stations either jointly operated or privately owned with some broadcasting from several locations; multi-channel cable and satellite systems are available (2019); 84 radio broadcast stations - 1 state-owned broadcaster with multiple stations and a large mixture of public and private broadcasters; one international broadcaster is available (2019) as well as one Chinese joint venture television station with the Ministry of Interior; several television and radio operators broadcast online only (often via Facebook) (2019)


total: 2,600 km (2014)
standard gauge: 178 km 1.435-m gauge; 253 km mixed gauge (2014)
narrow gauge: 2,169 km 1.000-m gauge (2014)
total: 642 km (2014)
narrow gauge: 642 km 1.000-m gauge (2014)

note: under restoration

total: 195,468 km (2013)
paved: 148,338 km (2013)
unpaved: 47,130 km (2013)
total: 47,263 km (2013)
paved: 12,239 km (2013)
unpaved: 35,024 km (2013)
47,130 km (30,831 km weight under 50 tons) (2011)
3,700 km (mainly on Mekong River) (2012)
Ports and terminals
major seaport(s): Cam Pha Port, Da Nang, Haiphong, Phu My, Quy Nhon
container port(s) (TEUs): Saigon (6,155,535), Cai Mep (3,065,014) (2017)
river port(s): Ho Chi Minh (Mekong)
major seaport(s): Sihanoukville (Kampong Saom)
river port(s): Phnom Penh (Mekong)
Merchant marine
total: 1,863
by type: bulk carrier 83, container ship 38, general cargo 1266, oil tanker 114, other 362 (2018)
total: 268
by type: bulk carrier 2, general cargo 176, oil tanker 19, other 71 (2019)
total: 45 (2013)
total: 16 (2013)
Airports - with paved runways
total: 38 (2013)
over 3,047 m: 10 (2013)
2,438 to 3,047 m: 6 (2013)
1,524 to 2,437 m: 13 (2013)
914 to 1,523 m: 9 (2013)
total: 6 (2019)
2,438 to 3,047 m: 3
1,524 to 2,437 m: 2
914 to 1,523 m: 1
Airports - with unpaved runways
total: 7 (2013)
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2013)
914 to 1,523 m: 3 (2013)
under 914 m: 3 (2013)
total: 10 (2013)
1,524 to 2,437 m: 2 (2013)
914 to 1,523 m: 7 (2013)
under 914 m: 1 (2013)
1 (2013)
1 (2013)
National air transport system
number of registered air carriers: 5 (2020)
inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 224
annual passenger traffic on registered air carriers: 47,049,671 (2018)
annual freight traffic on registered air carriers: 481.37 million mt-km (2018)
number of registered air carriers: 6 (2020)
inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 25
annual passenger traffic on registered air carriers: 1,411,059 (2018)
annual freight traffic on registered air carriers: 680,000 mt-km (2018)
Civil aircraft registration country code prefix
VN (2016)
XU (2016)


Military branches
People's Army of Vietnam (PAVN): PAVN Ground Forces, PAVN Navy (includes naval infantry), PAVN Air Force and Air Defense, Border Defense Force, and Vietnam Coast Guard; Vietnam People's Public Security; Vietnam Civil Defense Force (2019)
Royal Cambodian Armed Forces: High Command Headquarters, Royal Cambodian Army, Royal Khmer Navy, Royal Cambodian Air Force; Gendarmerie Royale Khmer (military police force responsible for internal security under Ministry of Interior); the National Counter Terrorism Committee; the National Committee for Maritime Security (performs Coast Guard functions and has representation from military and civilian agencies) (2019)
Military service age and obligation
18-27 years of age for compulsory and voluntary military service (females eligible for conscription, but in practice only males are drafted); conscription typically takes place twice annually and service obligation is 2 years (Army, Air Defense) and 3 years (Navy and Air Force) (2019)
18 is the legal minimum age for compulsory and voluntary military service (2012)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP
2.3% of GDP (2018)
2.3% of GDP (2017)
2.5% of GDP (2016)
2.4% of GDP (2015)
2.3% of GDP (2014)
2.3% of GDP (2019)
2.2% of GDP (2018)
2.1% of GDP (2017)
2% of GDP (2016)
1.8% of GDP (2015)

Transnational Issues

Disputes - international

southeast Asian states have enhanced border surveillance to check the spread of Asian swine fever; Cambodia and Laos protest Vietnamese squatters and armed encroachments along border; Cambodia accuses Vietnam of a wide variety of illicit cross-border activities; progress on a joint development area with Cambodia is hampered by an unresolved dispute over sovereignty of offshore islands; an estimated 300,000 Vietnamese refugees reside in China; establishment of a maritime boundary with Cambodia is hampered by unresolved dispute over the sovereignty of offshore islands; the decade-long demarcation of the China-Vietnam land boundary was completed in 2009; China occupies the Paracel Islands also claimed by Vietnam and Taiwan; Brunei claims a maritime boundary extending beyond as far as a median with Vietnam, thus asserting an implicit claim to Lousia Reef; the 2002 "Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea" eased tensions but differences between the parties negotiating the Code of Conduct continue; Vietnam continues to expand construction of facilities in the Spratly Islands; in March 2005, the national oil companies of China, the Philippines, and Vietnam signed a joint accord to conduct marine seismic activities in the Spratly Islands; Economic Exclusion Zone negotiations with Indonesia are ongoing, and the two countries in Fall 2011 agreed to work together to reduce illegal fishing along their maritime boundary; in May 2018, Russia’s RosneftVietnam unit started drilling at a block southeast of Vietnam which is within the area outlined by China’s nine-dash line and Beijing issued a warning

Cambodia is concerned about Laos' extensive upstream dam construction; Cambodia and Thailand dispute sections of boundary; in 2011 Thailand and Cambodia resorted to arms in the dispute over the location of the boundary on the precipice surmounted by Preah Vihear Temple ruins, awarded to Cambodia by an International Court of Justice decision in 1962 and part of a UN World Heritage site; Cambodia accuses Vietnam of a wide variety of illicit cross-border activities; progress on a joint development area with Vietnam is hampered by an unresolved dispute over sovereignty of offshore islands

Illicit drugs
minor producer of opium poppy; probable minor transit point for Southeast Asian heroin; government continues to face domestic opium/heroin/methamphetamine addiction problems despite longstanding crackdowns; enforces the death penalty for drug trafficking
narcotics-related corruption reportedly involving some in the government, military, and police; limited methamphetamine production; vulnerable to money laundering due to its cash-based economy and porous borders
Refugees and internally displaced persons
stateless persons: 30,581 (2019); note - Vietnam's stateless ethnic Chinese Cambodian population dates to the 1970s when thousands of Cambodians fled to Vietnam to escape the Khmer Rouge and were no longer recognized as Cambodian citizens; Vietnamese women who gave up their citizenship to marry foreign men have found themselves stateless after divorcing and returning home to Vietnam; the government addressed this problem in 2009, and Vietnamese women are beginning to reclaim their citizenship
stateless persons: 57,444 (2019)

Source: CIA Factbook