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Event Series Event Series: Asia in Review Election Monitor 2024

Vietnam’s Anti-Corruption Campaign: Implications for Governance and Investment

May 22 from 15:00 - 16:30 BMT

Asia in Review Event Series on Elections in 2024

May 22, 2024, 3 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. (GMT+7), online via Zoom video teleconferencing

organized in collaboration with the Asian Governance Foundation


Since its inception in 2016, Vietnam’s ongoing anti-corruption campaign – dubbed “Blazing Furnace” – has led to the resignations or removals of multiple senior-ranking members of the government, the ruling Communist Party, and security apparatus, including former President Nguyen Xuan Phuc, and two out of four deputy prime ministers. Just earlier this month, the head of Vietnam’s parliament, Vuong Dinh Hue, also resigned from his position after the Central Inspection Committee found that he had violated regulations governing members of the Communist Party. It did not specify what these regulations were, but it came four days after his assistant was detained on charges of abuse of power. 

The departure of Hue, which came a month after the resignation of Phuc’s successor, President Vo Van Thuong, leaves Vietnam with no permanent holders for two of the country’s “four pillars” of leadership — the other being the general-secretary of the Communist Party and the prime minister. Additionally, the powerful Politburo, the highest decision-making body of the Communist Party, now has only 13 of its 18 statutory members. 

These developments come at a critical juncture as the Communist Party approaches its five-yearly Congress and prepares for a reshuffle of top positions in 2026, including the role of party general-secretary. Incumbent party leader Nguyen Phu Trong, who has headed the party since 2011 and is leading the corruption purge, is unlikely to continue due to his age and health issues. 

Importantly, the private sector has not been spared in the anti-corruption drive either, with scrutiny in the real estate, banking, and healthcare sectors. More recently, there have been indicators that the Vietnamese authorities are broadening their graft campaign to target other senior business leaders across industries. In April, a court sentenced Truong My Lan, chair of a major property developer, to death over her role in a USD 12.5 billion financial fraud case, the country’s largest on record. 

This has chilled several anticipated projects and procurement plans and disrupted certain supply chains, as those in the public and private sectors alike fear they may be targeted next. But while the driver for the anti-corruption purge might be seen as solely political, there are clear indications that the campaign has actually led to an improvement in the business environment as measured by Transparency International’s Perceptions of Corruption Index (PCI). 

Against this backdrop, this webinar seeks to assess Vietnam’s ongoing anti-corruption crackdown, its consequences for the country’s political trajectory, and the possible impact on foreign investors and corporations that have an eye on Vietnam’s growing investment opportunities. 

Speakers (in alphabetical order)

Dr. Nguyen Khac Giang

Dr. Nguyen Khac Giang is a Visiting Fellow at the Vietnam Studies Programme,  ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute. He was formerly Head of the Political Research Unit of the Hanoi-based Vietnam Institute for Economic and Policy Research (VEPR). Giang earned his PhD in Political Science at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand. Giang is a frequent commentator on Vietnamese affairs and writes extensively for major Vietnamese and English news outlets. 

Raymond Mallon

With over three decades of experience in regional economic development and cooperation across Asia, Raymond is a Vietnam-based, seasoned professional specializing in economic policy, trade, governance, and sustainable development. He has held roles with multilateral institutions such as the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), as well as government agencies including the Ministry of Finance in several Southeast Asian countries. 


Dr. Carlyle A. Thayer

Dr. Carlyle A. Thayer is an Emeritus Professor at The University of New South Wales at the Australian Defence Force Academy in Canberra. He was educated at Brown, Yale (MA in Southeast Asian Studies), and the Australian National University (PhD International Relations). He is a Southeast Asia regional specialist with special expertise in Vietnam. In April 2024, ScholarGPS.com rated Thayer among the top 0.05% of all scholars worldwide for his prolific publication record, high impact, and outstanding quality of his scholarly contributions. Thayer was also ranked 8th globally as a Highly Ranked Scholar across all disciplines for his lifetime work in Vietnam. He is Director of Thayer Consultancy a small business registered in Australia in 2002 that provides political analysis of current regional security issues and other research support to selected clients.


Lucas Meier

Senior Program Officer & Asia in Review South Asia Regional Editor, CPG



CPG collaborated with the Asian Governance Foundation (AGF) to host a webinar titled “Vietnam’s Anti-Corruption Campaign: Implications for Governance and Investment” on 22 May 2024.

We extend our sincere gratitude to our esteemed panelists: Dr. Nguyen Khac Giang, Visiting Fellow at the Vietnam Studies Programme, ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute; Raymond Mallon, Freelance Economist and Economic Consultant; and Dr. Carlyle A. Thayer, Emeritus Professor at the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, The University of New South Wales, Australia, for sharing their invaluable insights.

We also extend warm appreciation to all our participants for their active engagement and valuable questions during the open forum session.

Special thanks to AGF Board Member and former Commander of the Thai Border Patrol Police, Pol. Lt-Gen. Suthin Khiewratana, along with all AiR and EiR contributors, for joining the webinar.

The event is part of the Asia in Review event series on elections in 2024.

Contact Information

Contact Mr. Lucas Meier at lucas.meier@cpg-online.de for program content.

Contact Ms. Venus Phuangkom at events@cpg-online.de for administrative matters.


May 22
15:00 - 16:30 BMT
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Event Type
Panel Discussion / Roundtable