Industrial Relations in China and Vietnam

Vietnam’s and China’s Diverging Industrial Relations Systems: Cases of Path Dependency” (DOI: 10.1080/00472336.2019.1623907) is by Anita Chan of the Department of Political and Social Change at the Australian National University in Canberra, Australia.

The article abstract states:

This article explains why Vietnam and China, one-party states that allow only one official trade union, are traversing different paths in their trade unions’ institutional structures, the state’s and trade union’s attitudes towards strikes, their willingness to allow independent trade unions and willingness to engage with the international labour union movement. These will be examined in terms of the path dependency of their recent histories, in which changes have been incremental on a path laid down by pre-existing entrenched institutions, until each national system no longer operated properly and new contingencies obliged the leadership to revamp the system. As a consequence of China’s and Vietnam’s divergent path dependencies, when external contingencies finally forced institutional change, countries have veered onto divergent trajectories – the Trans-Pacific Partnership energising Vietnam to debate the acceptance of autonomous trade unions, while Xi Jinping in China has intensified Party control over industrial relations.

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