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The politics of Vietnam takes place in a framework of a single-party socialist republic. The central role of the Communist Party of Vietnam is reaffirmed in the current constitution, adopted in April 1992. Though Vietnam remains a single-party state, adherence to ideological orthodoxy has become less important than economic development as a national priority.

All Vietnamese political organizations are under Vietnamese Communist Party supervision. It has the powers of executive, legislative and judicial branches. Communist Party policy is set by a fourteen-member Politburo. The top four positions in the Politburo are held by Party General Secretary Nông Đức Mạnh, General Minister of Public Security Le Hong Anh, State President Nguyễn Minh Triết, and Prime Minister Nguyễn Tấn Dũng.[1] The members of the Politburo were selected by the party's 160-member central committee in April 2006. The Party Secretariat, which consists of eight Politburo members, oversees day-to-day policy implementation.

Aside from the Communist Party, the most powerful institutions within the Vietnamese government are the executive agencies created by the 1992 constitution: the offices of the president and the prime minister. The Vietnamese President functions as head of state but also serves as the nominal commander of the armed forces and chairman of the Council on National Defense and Security. The Prime Minister of Vietnam heads a cabinet currently composed of three deputy prime ministers and the heads of twenty-six ministries and commissions, all confirmed by the National Assembly.

Notwithstanding the 1992 Constitution's reaffirmation of the central role of the Communist Party, the National Assembly, according to the Constitution, is the highest representative body of the people and the core organization with legislative powers. It has a broad mandate to oversee all government functions. Once seen as little more than a rubber stamp, the National Assembly has become more vocal and assertive in exercising its authority over lawmaking, particularly in recent years. However, the National Assembly is still subject to Communist Party direction. About 80% of the deputies in the National Assembly are Communist Party members. The assembly meets twice yearly for seven to ten days each time; elections for members are held every five years. There is a separate judicial branch, but it is relatively weak. Overall, there are few lawyers; and trial procedures are rudimentary.

The Socialist Republic of Vietnam is governed through a highly centralized system supervised by the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) (Đảng cộng sản Việt Nam), which was formerly the Vietnamese Labor Party (Đảng lao động Việt Nam) (1951-1976). The Socialist Republic of Vietnam exists today as a communist state.

Although there has been some effort to discourage membership in overlapping party and state positions, this practice still continues to a certain extent. Senior Politburo members such as Nguyễn Minh Triết, Nguyễn Tấn Dũng, Nguyễn Phú Trọng, Lê Hồng Anh concurrently also hold high positions in the government and the National Assembly. In addition, the Party's Central Military Commission, which is composed of select Politburo members and additional military leaders, determines military policy.

A Party Congress, meets every five years to set the direction of the party and the government. The Tenth National Congress of the Communist Party of Vietnam opened on April 18, 2006, and concluded on April 25, 2006, was attended by 1,176 delegates.

The 160-member Central Committee, which was elected by the Party Congress, usually meets at least twice a year.


Legislative branch

The 12th National Assembly (Quoc hoi) consists of 493 members. The National Assembly is elected for five year terms. Dr. Nguyễn Phú Trọng is Chairman of the National Assembly. Vietnam is a single-party state. This means that only one political party, the Communist Party of Vietnam is legally allowed to hold effective power. At the last elections, 20 May 2007, only the Vietnamese Fatherland Front, a front of the Communist Party of Vietnam, mass organizations and affiliated, and some non-partisans were allowed to participate. One member was self-nominated and does not belong to the VVF. Forty-four seats were won by non-party candidates. The president is elected for a five year term by the parliament. ]

State leaders

President Nguyen Minh Triet

Vice-President Nguyễn Thị Doan

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung

First Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Sinh Hung

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Pham Gia Khiem

Deputy Prime Minister Truong Vinh Trong

Deputy Prime Minister Hoang Trung Hai

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Education and Training Nguyen Thien Nhan

Minister of Defence General Phung Quang Thanh

Minister of Public Security General Le Hong Anh

Minister of Industry and Trade Vu Huy Hoang

Minister of Planning and Investment Vo Hong Phuc

Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Cao Duc Phat

Minister of Finance Vu Van Ninh

Minister of Justice Ha Hung Cuong [2][3]

Chairman of the National Assembly: Nguyễn Phú Trọng

Vice-Chairs of the National Assembly: Tòng Thị Phóng, Nguyễn Đức Kiên, Uông Chu Lưu, Huỳnh Ngọc Sơn [4]

Chief Justice the Supreme People's Court: Trương Hòa Bình

President of the Supreme People’s Procuracy of Vietnam: Trần Quốc Vượng

Chairman of the Central Committee of the Vietnam Fatherland Front: Huỳnh Đảm

President of the Vietnam Labour Confederation: Đặng Ngọc Tùng

Politburo of the Communist Party of Vietnam [5]:

Nong Duc Manh, Secretary-General (now number 1)

General Le Hong Anh, Minister of Public Security (now number 6)

Nguyen Tan Dung, Prime Minister (now number 3)

Nguyen Minh Triet, President (now number 2)

Truong Tan Sang, Standing Member, Central Committee Secretariat (now number 5)

Nguyen Phu Trong, President of the National Assembly (now number 4)

Pham Gia Khiem, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs (now number 12)

General Phung Quang Thanh, Minister of Defence (now number 11)

Truong Vinh Trong, Deputy Prime Minister (now number 8)

Le Thanh Hai, Secretary, Ho Chi Minh City Party Committee (now number 14)

Nguyen Sinh Hung, First Deputy Prime Minister (now number 9)

Nguyen Van Chi, Chairman, CPV Inspectorate Commission (now number 7)

Ho Duc Viet, Chairman, CPV Organisation Commission (now number 10)

Pham Quang Nghi, Secretary, Hanoi Party Committee (now number 13)

Dr To Huy Rua, Chief of the Central Committee for Propaganda and Education (now number 15)

Secretariat of Central Committee:

Nong Duc Manh, Secretary-General(number 1)

Truong Tan Sang, Standing Member (now number 2)

Truong Vinh Trong, Deputy Prime Minister (now number 4)

Nguyen Van Chi, Chair of the Central Inspection Committee (now number 3)

Ho Duc Viet, Chair of the Organisation Commission (now number 5)

Le Van Dung, Chairman of the Political General Department (now number 7)

Mrs Tong Thi Phong, Vice-President of the National Assembly (now number 8)

To Huy Rua, Chief of the Central Committee for Propaganda and Education (now number 6)

Ngo Van Du, Chief of the Central Communist Party Committee Office (now number 9)

Mrs Ha Thi Khiet, Chief of the Central Committee for People Campaigning (now number 10)

Political parties and elections

e • d Summary of the 20 May 2007 National Assembly of Vietnam election results
List Seats
Vietnamese Fatherland Front (Mặt Trận Tổ Quốc Việt Nam)
  • Communist Party of Vietnam (Đảng Cộng sản Việt Nam)
  • mass organizations and affiliated
  • non-party candidates (42 successful)
Self-nominated candidates 1
Total 493

There are no legally recognized opposition parties in Vietnam, although a number of opposition groups do exist scattered overseas among exile communities within countries such as France and the United States. These communities have supported demonstrations and civil disobedience against the government. The most prominent are the Vietnamese Constitutional Monarchist League, and the self-styled Government of Free Vietnam. The Government of Free Vietnam has claimed responsibility for a number of guerrilla raids into Vietnam which the Vietnamese government has denounced as terrorism.

Former political parties include the nationalist Việt Nam Quốc Dân Đảng of Nguyễn Thái Học, the Can Lao party of the Ngô Đình Diệm government and the Viet Nam Duy Tan Hoi of Phan Bội Châu during the colonial period.

Administrative divisions

Vietnam is divided into fifty-eight provinces (tỉnh, singular and plural): An Giang, Bac Giang, Bac Kan, Bac Lieu, Bac Ninh, Ba Ria-Vung Tau, Ben Tre, Binh Dinh, Binh Duong, Binh Phuoc, Binh Thuan, Ca Mau, Cao Bang, Dak Lak, Dak Nong, Dien Bien, Dong Nai, Dong Thap, Gia Lai, Ha Giang, Hai Duong, Ha Nam, Ha Tinh, Hoa Binh, Hau Giang, Hung Yen, Khanh Hoa, Kien Giang, Kon Tum, Lai Chau, Lam Dong, Lang Son, Lao Cai, Long An, Nam Dinh, Nghe An, Ninh Binh, Ninh Thuan, Phu Tho, Phu Yen, Quang Binh, Quang Nam, Quang Ngai, Quang Ninh, Quang Tri, Soc Trang, Son La, Tay Ninh, Thai Binh, Thai Nguyen, Thanh Hoa, Thua Thien-Hue, Tien Giang, Tra Vinh, Tuyen Quang, Vinh Long, Vinh Phuc, Yen Bai.

There are also five municipalities (thành phố trực thuộc trung ương, singular and plural) existing at provincial level: Can Tho, Da Nang, Hai Phong, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City.

International organization participation

Vietnam is a member of the United Nations, La Francophonie, ASEAN, and APEC, and became a member of the World Trade Organization 11 January 2007. In 2005 it attended the inaugural East Asia Summit, which is the preliminary replacement for ASEAN in the future.


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