What’s driving growth in Vietnam’s auto industry?

Commuters on bikes, scooters and in cars are seen in a traffic jam in Hanoi, Vietnam. (Photo: AAP)

Author: Arve Hansen, University of Oslo

After many years of slow growth and stagnation the last couple of years have seen a significant boom in car sales in Vietnam. The country most known for its staggering motorbike population now appears to be rapidly heading for the age of the automobile. What has caused this change of fortunes for the auto industry, and will this new trend create a strong domestic auto industry in Vietnam?

Read more…

Shared concerns about China bring Vietnam and Japan closer

Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida shakes hands with Vietnamese President Tran Dai Quang at the Presidential Palace in Hanoi, Vietnam, 6 May 2016. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Nguyen Manh Hung, George Mason University

Three weeks after assuming office, on 22 April 2016, Vietnamese President Tran Dai Quang was quoted as saying that Japan is ‘one of Vietnam’s most important cooperative partners’. The importance given to the Vietnam–Japan relationship, on both sides, has increased with the changing power configuration in Asia. Read more…

Grading Vietnam’s higher education reforms

Delegates attend the opening ceremony of the 12th National Congress of Vietnam's Communist Party in Hanoi, Vietnam, 21 January 2016. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Tran Van Hoa, Victoria University and University of Wollongong

Vietnam has announced a bold new higher education reform agenda. The government of Vietnam will offer up to 10,000 government scholarships for overseas doctoral study between 2014 and 2020 (or 1300–1500 per year) to tertiary and research institute staff. Read more…

Why Trong’s re-election doesn’t spell the end for reform in Vietnam

Vietnam's National Assembly Chairman Nguyen Sinh Hung, President Truong Tan Sang and Communist Party Secretary General Nguyen Phu Trong attend a wreath laying ceremony at Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum in Hanoi, Vietnam, 21 March 2016. (Photo: AAP).

Authors: Alexander L. Vuving, APCSS

In late January 2016, the Vietnamese Communist Party (VCP) held its 12th National Congress to select leaders and set policy guidelines for the next five years. Although every VCP congress is a time of intense power struggles, the 12th Congress was especially partisan. Read more…

Are Vietnam’s elections becoming more democratic?

A general view of delegates attending the opening session of the eleventh session of the National Assembly's 13th tenure, at the National Assembly Office in Hanoi, Vietnam, 21 March 2016. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Hai Hong Nguyen, UQ

Vietnam will hold its parliamentary election in May 2016. The three key positions of president, prime minister and chairperson of the National Assembly will all be elected. But perhaps the most interesting aspect of this election is the emerging group of self-nominated candidates. This election, around 30 civil society activists are running for the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) controlled National Assembly.

Read more…

Vietnam’s stalled reform agenda

Delegates hold Party's ID cards to vote at the 12th National Congress of Vietnam Communist Party in Hanoi, Vietnam. (Photo: AAP)

Author: Loc Doan, Global Policy Institute

The Doi Moi (renovation) policy initiated by the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) in 1986 transformed Vietnam’s economy at the time. But the 30-year-old Doi Moi policies have long run out of steam. If Vietnam wants to catch up with other more advanced countries in Southeast Asia, it must embark on another Doi Moi aimed at liberalising the country’s political, as well as economic, structures.

Read more…

Vietnam’s China challenge

General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong along with Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and other leaders attends the closing ceremony of the 12th National Congress of Vietnam's Communist Party in Hanoi, Vietnam, 28 January 2016. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Nguyen Khac Giang, VEPR

After one of the most highly contested Vietnamese Communist Party (VCP) elections to date, the incumbent General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong was re-elected to the top post of the Vietnamese regime in late January. But victory in the elections is just the first challenge in Trong’s five-year term. Read more…