Workers Party of Vietnam

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Workers’ Party of Vietnam


(WPV; also known as the Lao Dong Party), a political party founded on Feb. 3, 1930, under the name of the Communist Party of Vietnam at the unification conference in Hong Kong (Xianggang). It drew its membership from Communist organizations that had arisen in the 1920’s in Indochina amid the development of the workers’ movement and the national-liberation movement. Ho Chi Minh played a major role in preparing and conducting the conference. In October 1930, at the first plenum of the Central Committee, the party was renamed the Communist Party of Indochina (CPI). The same plenum adopted the party’s political program, which defined the tasks of the bourgeois-democratic revolution and set forth the ways it could evolve into a socialist revolution. In 1930 and 1931, under the leadership of the CPI, a powerful wave of actions by workers and peasants against the colonial-feudal yoke unfolded in Vietnam. People’s councils were formed in the provinces of Nghe An and Ha Tinh. However, the actions of the workers and peasants were suppressed by the French colonialists.

Despite terror and repression, the CPI continued its work. In April 1931 it was admitted to the Comintern. The First Congress of the CPI was held on Mar. 27–31, 1935, in Macao (Aomen, China). The congress elected the Central Committee and adopted a number of resolutions on issues that included the party’s work, the creation of a united anti-imperialist front for Indochina, and support of the Soviet Union. In May 1941, at the eighth plenum of the Central Committee, a program of struggle for national liberation was ratified, and a resolution on the preparation of an armed rebellion was adopted. The plenum also adopted a resolution on the creation of the League of Struggle for the Independence of Vietnam, or the Vietminh. Under the leadership of the CPI, the August Revolution of 1945 triumphed, and the Democratic Republic of Vietnam (DRV) was created on Sept. 2, 1945. In 1945–46 the French imperialists unleashed a colonial war against the DRV. The CPI and the people’s government called the Vietnamese people to a general war of resistance.

The Second Congress of the CPI met from Feb. 11 to 19, 1951, while the war against the French colonialists was raging. The congress adopted a decision to rename the CPI the Workers’ Party of Vietnam (WPV). The party’s program and charter were also adopted, and the Central Committee was elected. The party program stated that the basic tasks of the Vietnamese revolution were to drive out the imperialist aggressors and achieve independence and unity for the country, to destroy the colonial regime and eradicate all remnants of feudalism, to develop a people’s democratic system of government, and to lay the foundations for socialism. In accordance with the decisions of the third (April 1952), fourth (January 1953), and fifth (November 1953) plenums of the Central Committee, measures were carried out to strengthen the country’s economy. In November 1953 the First All-Vietnam Conference of the WPV adopted a program for implementing an agrarian reform aimed at liquidating the feudal system of landowning and establishing peasant ownership of land in accordance with the slogan “land to those who work it”; the reform was completed in 1958.

In July 1954, as a result of the heroic struggle by the Vietnamese and the support of the Soviet Union, other socialist countries, and all progressive forces in the world, the imperialists were forced to sign the Geneva Agreements of 1954 ending hostilities in Indochina. With the goal of struggling for the country’s unification, the Patriotic Front of Vietnam was created in 1955 under the leadership of the WPV. With the restoration of peace, North Vietnam entered a period of transition to socialism. By the end of 1960, under the leadership of the WPV, the DRV had completed the collectivization of agriculture and the socialist reorganization of private-capitalist industry and commerce and the cottage industry.

The Third Congress was held in September 1960. It adopted a new charter for the WPV and defined the general party line, the main goals of which were the building of socialism in North Vietnam and the struggle for the peaceful unification of Vietnam. The congress summed up the results of the restoration and development of the national economy of North Vietnam between 1955 and 1960 and ratified the directives of the five-year plan for the development of the national economy for 1961–65, which provided for the implementation of the first stage of socialist industrialization and the completion of the socialist reorganization of the national economy. Under the leadership of the WPV, the Vietnamese people, in the course of fulfilling the three-year (1958–60) and five-year plans of development for the national economy, achieved the transformation of the DRV from a backward, agrarian country into an agrarian-industrial state.

Under the leadership of the WPV and with the fraternal assistance of the Soviet Union and other socialist countries, the Vietnamese people attained victory in the struggle against the armed intervention of American imperialism, which had unleashed an aggressive colonial war against the DRV in 1965, and made a major contribution to the cause of eliminating a dangerous hotbed of war in Southeast Asia. After the complete liberation of the South in 1975, the WPV set as its goal the building of socialism in the whole of the country.

WPV delegations participated in the international conferences of Communist and workers’ parties in Moscow in 1957 and 1960. In 1976 the WPV was renamed the Communist Party of Vietnam.

Congresses of the WPV: First Congress, Mar. 27–31, 1935, Macao (Aomen); Second Congress, Feb. 11–19, 1951, Tuyen Quang; Third Congress, Sept. 5–12, 1960, Hanoi.


“Programma deistvii KPIK.” In Programmnye dokumenty kommunisticheskikh partii Vostoka. Moscow, 1934.
“Programma PTV.” In Demokraticheskaia Respublika V’etnam: Konstitutsiia, zakonodatel’nye akty, dokumenty. Moscow, 1955. (Translated from Vietnamese.)
III s”ezd PTV. Moscow, 1961. (Translated from Vietnamese.)
Ho Chi Minh. O Lenine, leninizme i nerushimoi sovetsko-v’etnamskoi druzhbe. Moscow, 1969. (Translated from Vietnamese.)
Le Duan. Izbrannye stat’i i rechi. Moscow, 1971. (Translated from Vietnamese.)
Kratkaia istoriia Partii trudiashchikhsia V’etnama. Moscow, 1971. (Translated from Vietnamese.)
Tridtsat’ piat’ let bor’by partii, part 1. Hanoi, 1966. (In Vietnamese.)
Sorok let deiatel’nosti partii. Hanoi, 1970. (In Vietnamese.)

E. P. GLAZUNOV [19–739–1; updated]

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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