Vietnamese place high value on pursuit of wealth

September 20, 2022 | 09:00
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The Vietnamese are highly focused on becoming wealthy, demonstrating a strong desire to catch up with European nations, according to a recent workshop.
Vietnamese place high value on pursuit of wealth
Vietnamese youth have ambitions to get rich

The pursuit of wealth is particularly important to Vietnamese people, according to a workshop organised by the Foreign Trade University.

In the September 19 discussion, “What motivates people to become wealthier?", author and real estate expert Dr. Rainer Zitelmann focused on presenting people's attitudes towards wealth across different countries.

According to a series of surveys by public opinion research institute Ipsos MORI of 1,000 representatively selected people in a range of countries worldwide, an average of 28 per cent of respondents in the United States and Europe said that being rich was important to them.

In the four Asian countries surveyed, this figure was 58 per cent, with wealth most important to the Vietnamese (76 per cent) and South Koreans (63 per cent). In Vietnam, 80 per cent of respondents between the age of 18-29 think that becoming wealthy is either extreme or very important. The ratio of people between the age of 30-44 having the same opinion was 75 per cent.

Besides this, in Vietnam, the ambition of acquiring wealth for people having a high income is larger than for those with low and medium incomes.

Vietnam and most other Asian nations, except for China, showed low levels of social envy of the rich compared to the US and European countries.

Vietnamese place high value on pursuit of wealth
Dr. Zitelmann presented his lecture at the workshop

“I’m looking forward to assisting the Vietnamese people to achieve their financial goals through the sharing of my knowledge and experience, and delighted to share both my successes and failures,” said Dr. Zitelmann.

Over 200 lectures and students participated in the workshop, including Prof. Andreas Stoffers, country director of the Friedrich Naumann Foundation; Assoc. Prof. Dao Ngoc Tien, vice president of the Foreign Trade University; and Pham Phuong Thao.

The workshop aimed to clarify people’s attitudes toward the rich and their opinion on the behaviour of trying to become wealthy, with Pham Phuong Thao providing a view of the Vietnamese people on the rich and wealthy

Dr. Zitelmann's presentation was largely based on his upcoming book, The Rich in Public Opinion, which is due to be published on September 24. The book has a particular chapter to clarify how Vietnamese people think about the rich.

The Rich in Public Opinion” is a groundbreaking, in-depth analysis based on respondent surveys of how the public views the wealthy, compiled and compared across 11 nations including Vietnam. The project created an objective methodology applied consistently across the 11 participating nations. This included the development of a Social Envy Coefficient, Personality Trait Coefficient, and resulting Rich Sentiment Index, which summarised general public sentiment towards the rich.


  • Among the 11 nations included in the study, Vietnam had more respondents than any other nation stating who valued getting rich.
  • Vietnam is the only nation in the study where more women (78 per cent) than men (72 per cent) said they want to get rich.
  • Vietnam's population’s envy of rich people is very low (similar to Japan and South Korea) and lower than Europe's. China, on the other hand, has levels of envy similar to that of Europe.

Along with The Rich in Public Opinion, Dr. Zitelmann is also the author of 25 other books, which are famous all around the world, especially in China, India, and South Korea.

By Oanh Nguyen

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