Vietnam is a Southeast Asian country with about the same area as Finland. The population of Vietnam is nearly 85 million, and of these people, about one third are less than fifteen years old.
There are fifty-three national minorities in Vietnam, and many have their own language and rich cultural heritage. The smallest minority groups consist of only several hundred people, while the largest groups have tens or hundreds of thousands. Of the total population, about 87% are ethnically Vietnamese. The country’s official language is Vietnamese.
The culture of Vietnam is thousands of years old, so nowadays there are many sites in Vietnam on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
The national minorities of Vietnam have a rich oral tradition. About 100 oral epics have been recorded and translated into Vietnamese, but their actual number is otherwise unknown.
Farming has been the most important way of life in Vietnam for centuries, but in recent years the variety of ways of making a living have increased rapidly; among others, information technology has become a significant industry. Vietnam is still, however, the world’s second greatest cultivator of rice. Other important domestic goods are coffee, tea, and rubber. Shellfish are an important export. Farm production currently accounts for about 20% of the Gross Domestic Product of Vietnam, but 60% of the population still work in farm trades.