Ho Chi Minh/ Potential reformation

In 1978, Mr Nguyen Van Linh suggested the government to adapt patriotic capitalism. Owners of private factories could keep their business if they cooperated with the new rulers. The government should also help with the peasants to cultivate their own land in increase production and be more efficient. However, the plan was rejected by the Vietnam government.


In 1982, he was considered to be a left politician and sent to be the Party Secretary for Ho Chi Minh City, away from the central government. The city became the testing ground of his theory. He waged economic guerrilla warfare against Hanoi. In 1986, he invited Hanoi Government to observe. The officials were impressed and his idea was promoted.


“The free enterprise element of the mixed economy he envisioned meant social inequities; it also meant jobs Vietnamese so desperately neede: ‘We have to accept a certain level of exploitation.”

(Neil, 1992, p.80)


Not only to feed its people, the idea was crucial to the city development as it helped speeding up the urban development of Ho Chi Minh and other cities in Vietnam as well. After the Vietnam War, Ho Chi Minh city remained poor and not developed. All the previous financial support was no longer available. The reconstruction of the city was slow and could not catch up with the increasing population. With the scheme of patriotic capitalism, the city could attract enough foreign business investment and financing from international lending institutions. The city could build up necessary infrastructure for modern economy. After the retirement of Linh, his idea was continuously enforced by the city ruler. However, the process was slow and slowly put away from the table.

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