Vietnam's ruling regime may find domestic expressions of rage against China useful for now. But if the Southeast Asian country isn't careful, it could pay a higher price for this week's rioting than it expects, according to analysis in this week's edition of The Economist.
Violent protests in Vietnam have left at least three people dead and resulted in the burning of many factories as rioters vented popular rage at Vietnam's much larger, neighboring country to the north. Vietnamese have become incensed by China's insertion of a huge oil drilling rig close to Vietnam's shores.
And therein lies the potential problem, according to The Economist. "Vietnam's Communist Party built its legitimacy on robust economic growth, and it fears alienating foreign investors. It is unclear how far continuing unrest will harm the economy or affect back-channels with the Chinese government," the report said.
The White House, though almost certain to avoid assisting Vietnam overtly, called China's actions "provocative" in a statement on Friday.
Read the full story in The Economist here.