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Thayer Vietnam: National Assembly's First Confidence Vote

Thayer Vietnam: National Assembly's First Confidence Vote

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Published by Carlyle Alan Thayer
Three assessments of the outcome of Vietnam's first experiment in 'votes of confidence' of government ministers by National Assembly deputies.
Three assessments of the outcome of Vietnam's first experiment in 'votes of confidence' of government ministers by National Assembly deputies.

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Published by: Carlyle Alan Thayer on Jul 08, 2013
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08/04/2013

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Background Briefing:
Vietnam: National Assembly’s
First Confidence Vote (1)Carlyle A. ThayerJune 11, 2013
[client name deleted]The results for the confidence vote
by Vietnam’s National Assembly are
 just in. Allthe official
s secured the required majority of “confidence” votes. P
rime MinisterNguyen Tan Dung got 32.13% low confidence and 67.87% confidence votes. Theworst performer was Governor of the State Bank of Vietnam with 42.56 % low to57.43% confidence.Any thoughts? How significant is this? Will it lead to any significant political changes?ANSWER: The confidence vote reveals that divisions within the Vietnam Communist
Party that surfaced in October last over disciplining “a certain comrade”,
readNguyen Tan Dung, are reflected among the deputies to the National Assembly,
ninety present of whom are party members. President Truong Tan Sang, Dung’s
main rival, scored third highest on the high confidence vote. Prime Minister NguyenTan Dung scored twenty-fifth. The average high confidence vote was 209 and Dungscored just above it at 210.When the 47 government officials are ranked according to low confidence vote,
Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung’s results are a disaster. He came in third last with
nearly a third (32%) of the National Assembly deputies voting against him. This isoffset, however, by a combined 68% of deputies voting either confidence or highconfidence in his performance. Prime Minister Dung will be chastened by the resultbut will continue in officeIt is notable that eight ministers received a low confidence vote above the average of 99. Two ministers, the Governor of the State Bank and the Minister of Education andTraining, ranked above the Prime Minister in low confidence voting. Three ministersdid well in the high confidence vote: Phung Quang Thanh, Minister of NationalDefence; Tran Dai Quang, Minister of Public Security; and Pham Binh Minh, Ministerof Foreign Affairs.Overall members of Cabinet generally took a drubbing while deputies serving in theNational Assembly and on its committees did well. Eleven ministers ranked at thebottom of the high confidence vote while fourteen members of the NationalAssembly ranked in the upper tier of the confidence vote.
Thayer Consultancy
ABN # 65 648 097 123
 
2
While one confidence vote is not supposed
to determine a minister’s fate, the results
of the first confidence vote suggest that there will be ministerial changes before thecurrent term in office expires in 2016.In sum, the confidence vote reveals that party in-fighting between factions is likely tocontinue until the current term in office expires in 2016 when the next national partycongress is scheduled to meet.
Suggested citation: Carlyle A. Thayer, “Vietnam: National Assembly’s First Confidence Vote
 (1)
,”
Thayer Consultancy Background Brief 
, June 11, 2013. All background briefs are postedon Scribd.com (search for Thayer).
Thayer Consultancy provides political analysis of current regional security issues toselected clients. It was officially registered as a small business in Australia in 2002.
 
 
Background Briefing:
Vietnam: National Assembly’s
First Confidence Vote (2)Carlyle A. ThayerJune 11, 2013
[client name deleted]The preliminary results of Vietnam's first-ever confidence vote have been made withall the senior leaders surviving the motion. What do you make of this?But here are some striking results, in my opinion:1. State Bank Governor Nguyen Van Binh had 209 votes of no confidence from 491lawmakers. He was the government minister that received the highest rate of noconfidence, but anyway narrowly escaped the vote of no confidence.2. Interestingly, PM Nguyen Tan Dung got the second highest rate of no confidencewith 160 votes3. Full details of the outcomes of the confidence vote can be seenhere:http://tuoitre.vn/Chinh-tri-Xa-hoi/553244/ket-qua-47-lanh-dao-cao-cap-duoc-quoc-hoi-lay-phieu-tin-nhiem.htmlQ1. Regarding State Bank Govern
or Nguyen Van Binh’s poor showing, overall, what
does this outcome mean for him and what does it mean for Vietnam's economy?What do you make of this outcome?
ANSWER: Governor Binh’s results are a disaster. Binh is likely to be replaced
although technically he can still wait until the next vote of confidence in 2014.Q2. What is your take on the poor showing by Prime Minister Dung?ANSWER: The Prime Minister received the third highest low confidence vote. ThePrime Minister will stay in office, however, as just over two-third of deputies voted
confidence or high confidence in his performance. Binh’s results, combined with thePrime Minister’s high vote of low confidence, indicates that the deputies are not
satisfied with the handling of the economy.Q3. Any further comments you want to add regarding this unprecedented move?The confidence vote reveals that concerns over handling the economy within theVietnam Communist Party that surfaced in October last year are reflected among thedeputies to the National Assembly, ninety present of whom are party members.Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung scored twenty-fifth on the high confidence vote.
Thayer Consultancy
ABN # 65 648 097 123

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