Vietnam faces high disaster risk levels, ranked 91 out of 191 countries by the 2019 INFORM Risk Index, driven particularly by its exposure to hazards. Vietnam has extremely high exposure to flooding, ranked 1st with Bangladesh, including, riverine, flash, and coastal flooding. Vietnam also has high exposure to tropical cyclones and their associated hazards. Drought exposure is slightly lower but still significant as highlighted by the severe drought of 2015–2017. Vietnam’s overall ranking on the INFORM Risk Index is somewhat mitigated by its better scores in terms of vulnerability and coping capacity. 

This section provides a summary of key natural hazards and their associated socioeconomic impacts in a given country. And it allows quick evaluation of most vulnerable areas through the spatial comparison of natural hazard data with development data, thereby identifying exposed livelihoods and natural systems.

Natural Hazard Statistics

The charts provide overview of the most frequent natural disaster in a given country and understand the impacts of those disasters on human populations.


Climate change is now recognized to have a significant impact on disaster management efforts and pose a significant threat to the efforts to meet the growing needs of the most vulnerable populations. The demands of disaster risk management are such that concise, clear, and reliable information is crucial. The information presented here offers insight into the frequency, impact and occurrence of natural hazards.

Natural Hazard / Development Nexus

Understanding natural hazard occurrence as well as historical climate conditions, in relation to development contexts, is critical to understanding a country’s historical vulnerability. This tool allows the visualization of different natural hazards or historical climate conditions with socio-economic and development datasets. Select the Development Context and either a Natural Hazard or Climate Condition and overlay horizontally by sliding the toggle left or right to gain a broader sense of historically vulnerable areas.



Data presented under Historical Climate Conditions are reanalysis products derived from ERA5-Land data. ERA5-Land is a global land-surface dataset at 9 km resolution, consistent with atmospheric data from the ERA5 reanalysis from 1950 onward. Climate reanalyses combine past observations with models to generate consistent time series of multiple climate variables. They provide a comprehensive description of the observed climate as it has evolved during recent decades, on 3D grids at sub-daily intervals. 

This data has been collected, aggregated and processed by the Climate Resilience Cluster of the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Earth Observation for Sustainable Development (EO4SD) initiative.

Key Vulnerabilities
  • Vietnam regularly experiences high maximum temperatures, with an average monthly maximum of around 28°C and an average May maximum of 31°C.
  • Flood represents the largest risk by economic impact in Vietnam, accounting for an estimated 97% of average annual losses from hazards. As of 2010, assuming protection for up to a 1-in-25 year event the population annually affected by flooding in Vietnam is estimated at 930,000 people and expected annual impact on GDP at $2.6 billion.
  • Vietnam has very high exposure to tropical cyclones, with a particularly high rate of landfall along its northern coast. Climate change is expected to interact with cyclone hazard in complex ways which are currently poorly understood. Known risks include the action of sea-level rise to enhance the damage caused by cyclone-induced storm surges, and the possibility of increased wind speed and precipitation intensity.
  • Temperature rises in Vietnam are expected to lead to what might be considered chronic heat stress in some areas, even under lower emissions pathways. Both Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City among the urban areas most threatened by deadly heat globally.
  • Temperature rises in Vietnam, a country already experiencing high average temperatures, are expected to lead to what might be considered chronic heat stress in some areas, even under lower emissions pathways. Study highlights both Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City among the urban areas most threatened by deadly heat globally.
  • Study suggests that around 33% of the national population are vulnerable to flooding at a return level of 1-in-25 years, but this will increase to 38% under RCP2.6 and 46% under RC8.5 by 2100. The climate change component, when isolated, is projected to increase the annually affected population by 433,000 people, and the impact on GDP by $3.6 billion by 2030 under the RCP8.5 emissions pathway.
  • Much of Vietnam’s coastline is exposed to typhoons, which strike the country an average of 6-8 times per year. Coastal areas, especially in the northern half of the country, are most at risk. Storms resulted in nearly US $4.5 billion in damage in Vietnam over the past century, and, due to population growth in exposed areas, as well as a rise in infrastructure assets, the damage potential from typhoons is increasing.
  • Intense rainfall associated with typhoons frequently causes immense destruction in heavily populated coastal areas as well as in the Red River and Mekong deltas, the country’s major rice-growing areas. These deltas are also vulnerable to flooding caused by heavy monsoon rainfall.
  • An estimated 1-1.3 million people are estimated to be drought-affected in 9 provinces of the Mekong region of Vietnam, representing 13-17% of the total population. Droughts can occur in every part of Vietnam, but have been concentrated in recent years in the central and southern parts of the country, and the winter-spring crops (January-March) are usually most affected.
  • Rainfall in Ninh Thuan province has actually been increasing over time, but greater variability has also increased drought incidence.
  • Strengthen institutional disaster risk management (DRM) policy and planning capacity.
  • Strengthen core DRM technical capacity and investments.
  • Support development of hydro-meteorological services and an early warning system.
  • Mainstream DRM in key sectors.
  • Increase household level resilience to disasters.
  • Support stronger DRM financial protection and post-disaster resilience.
  • Ensure pandemic preparedness.