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Differences and Commonalities in East Asia

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Asia is the biggest continent in the world with 50 independent countries. Most of the countries occupy the eastern part of the Eurasian landmass. China and Vietnam are two Asian countries with similarities and differences. Both countries share similar cultural practices and religion. However, Asian and Vietnam are different in terms of structure of its economic activities. Frequently, China emerges as the most criticized country due to its recent rapid economic development and social change.

On the contrary, Vietnam struggled through a rigid economic system in the quest of adopting a more industrialized system. Both countries rush to meet the competition in the current global economy by expanding its market to various parts of the world. Thus, it is imperative to investigate the differences and the similarities in themes of business between China and Vietnam.


Vietnam is comprised of a young population, which strives to change from its rigid central agrarian economy to an industrialized market since early 1986.

In the year 2016 and 2017, Vietnam faced challenges in its economy due to drought, which affected its agricultural sector. Despite the unfortunate events, Vietnam managed to maintain a GDP of 6. 3% through domestic demand and exports. Vietnam joined the international market by signing free trade agreements like the EU and WTO n in 2007. For more than 30 years Vietnam developed political and economic reforms that saw the country expand to the international markets. Vietnam cancelled its nuclear energy project due to safety problems and high cost of managing the problem. However, the country still struggles to sustain the growing pressure on its infrastructure, which failed meeting the needs of the middle class.

Additionally, Vietnam implemented USAID Country Development Cooperation Strategy for 2014-2019, which is a program that works for the public and the private sector, to promote economic growth. The policy makers planned to use the program to improve social and economic growth and enhance evidence-based decision making processes. The programs sought to strengthen the workers union by ensuring that it meets the global trade standards. China’s current economic stagnation could be attributed to a decline in its demographic structure. Specifically, there is a decrease in the number of working class, and this causes slow rates of labor force. The Chinese government needs to increase its labor force by developing better strategies for improving its labor force.

The government needs to increase its fertility rates, to establish a balanced population structure.


Reforms and Governance

China and Vietnam share an array of similarities in terms of economic aspects. For instance, both countries boast of having vast populations. Notably, Vietnam is a densely populated developing country in the Asian region. According to Malesky & London (2014), Vietnam still experiences transitions from the rigidity of the highly agrarian economy since the late 1980s. In fact, Vietnam enacted policies which focused on industrial-based economic activities. Based on this fact, the country raised substantial amounts of revenue, especially in the 20th Century. Similarly, China has one of the fastest growing populations in the world. For this reason, the country enjoys the availability of ready and affordable labor, an aspect that leads to accomplishment of numerous economic activities. Importantly, the two countries enjoy the presence of youthful populations, boosted by a stable political climate.

The two economic power houses thrive on the fact that their governments instill policies which ensure commitment towards sustainable growth. China and Vietnam are both agricultural countries, which experienced massive Communist-led peasant-based movements. Indeed, both countries maintain significant portions of the economic sector, despite opening their markets to the private sector. Both Vietnam and China believed that allowing private proprietors invest in their market environments would boost productive activities and yield more revenue. Specifically, the two countries enjoy support from their respective governments in investing in the manufacturing sector. It is important to note that China is one of the biggest goods manufacturers in the globe, with Vietnam playing an integral role in satisfying the market demand with its high goods stock. Additionally, the two countries enjoy the availability of vast untapped mineral resources, an aspect that attracts many investors. Furthermore, the two countries derive their economic success from dependable reforms instilled by former regimes.

Specifically, China embarked on serious economic restructurings subsequent to 30 years of bureaucratic and socio-democratic developments. Based on this aspect, China recorded an impressive accumulation rate of 33-35% from 1978-1979. Similarly, Vietnam began its reforms in 1986-1989. The reforms were necessary since the war between the Asian nation and the United States, the Cambodia conflict and international embargos against the state affected its economic stability in great margins. In fact, the collapse of the Vietnam’s East bloc proved detrimental to its economy, as its overall GDP fell to $78. However, the systematic implementation of economic reforms averted a systematic collapse. Vietnam experienced a period of economic improvement as the overall living conditions of the population improved drastically. In 1970s China changed its economic operations from a planned system to a market-oriented strategy. The Chinese government implemented reforms that saw the China grow to a global economic giant. For instance, China developed reforms in the fashion sector, and this led to the increase in its GDP since 1978. The government eradicated practices like collective agriculture, and adapted commercial approach in not only agriculture but also other sectors like banking and the stock market. The industrial policy is another strategy that the Chinese government adapts in all its sectors. The technique placed China as the best performing country in 2014. Precisely, it became the largest global exporter and trading nation Malesky, E. , & London, J. (2014).

China linked its currency with the US dollar and this increased its strength in the market. Besides, after adapting the exchange rate system, China gained a competitive advantage in the market. Equally, Vietnam gained success in the export market in the recent years. With support in from USAID Vietnam strengthened its legal and regulatory networks with an objective of promoting economic growth and better living standards (Malesky, & London 2014). The government works with the private sector in order to reinforce investment. USAID ensures that Vietnam transitions from market-based to an international economy. China and Vietnam share similar themes in business. Both countries concentrated in improving their governance in order to achieve a stable economy. Besides, they both accepted the international standards of trade in order to trade with other countries in the world. However, China possesses better economic resources as compared to Vietnam.

The Vietnamese government took long in transitioning from a rigid economic system to an industrialized economy. On the contrary, China attained rapid transition to an innovative economy and this earned it its place in the global economy.

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