An international workshop on active aging, innovation and application of digital technology in care for older persons in ASEAN was held in Hanoi on November 19.
Deputy Minister of Health Do Xuan Tuyen said that the workshop is an initiative of Vietnam as the deputy chair of the ASEAN Centre for Active Ageing and Innovation (ACAI), which receives strong support from ACAI members.
This is a chance for participants to share experience for stronger cooperation among ACAI members and partners, heading to an ASEAN Community of solidarity and active adaptation to population aging in a dynamic, healthy and innovative manner, he said.
Tuyen noted that ASEAN, which has the third largest population in the world with 634 million people, is experiencing a population aging period with more than 45 senior citizens, accounting for about 7% of the total population in 2019, which is forecast to 132 million in 2050, making up 16.7% of total ASEAN population.
Vietnam is among countries with the fastest population aging speed in the world. Currently, the country has 7.4 million older persons, accounting for 7.7% of the population. The figures are predicted to reach 22.3 million and 20.4% by 2050, respectively, the official said.
Naomi Kitahara, Representative of Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) in Vietnam, stressed that there is no comprehensive policy that can deal with the population aging issue.
According to her, the important thing is to invest in policies toward the future based on rights and improvements of gender relations, and focus on demands of people at every age. This can ensure that ASEAN countries can head to a brighter future for all, without leaving anyone behind on the path of implementing development goals.
Last year, Vietnam and other ASEAN member countries signed an agreement on establishing the ACAI. In July 2021, at the ACAI's first session, Thailand was elected as the chair and Vietnam as deputy chair of the centre for the 2021-2023 tenure. Vietnam is scheduled to undertake the ACAI chair for the 2023-2025 tenure.