April 30 marked the 40th anniversary of the reunification of North and South Vietnam, and the end of one of the longest wars in contemporary history. Vietnam has come a long way since. Today it is listed highly by various economic assessments and predictions as the next tiger of Asia; a country with the fastest growing middle class in Southeast Asia and also as home for the fastest growing number of ultra-rich. Optimistic estimates place Vietnam as the world's 8th fastest growing economy by 2050.
The Doi Moi reforms, introduced in 1986, created opportunities for economic growth, resulting in average 7 percent growth in its gross domestic product over the past decade, a remarkable achievement outnumbered only by China and India.
According to some estimates, Vietnam has the fastest growing middle class in Southeast Asia. In 2012, the middle class population was 12 million and is projected to increase to 33 million by 2020. In a population forecast to reach 97 million by 2020, approximately one-third of Vietnam's citizens will be defined as "middle class." It is forecast that the middle class will drive more than 50 percent of country's total consumption. Considering the prevailing tendency of rural-urban migration, the growth of this middle class is likely to exceed such estimates.