Vietnam and US convene first Friends of the Mekong Policy Dialogue
|Cai Rang floating market, a highlight of Vietnam’s Mekong Delta|
|Further bolstering coordination between Mekong-RoK cooperation and ASEAN|
|Mekong-Japan Summit called for cooperation strengthening and conectivity increasing|
In his remarks, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Ambassador Atul Keshap emphasized that the United States is committed to a secure, open, and prosperous Mekong region, highlighting the importance of this region to ASEAN centrality and to the ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific.
The 17 participating countries and institutions under the Mekong-U.S. Partnership and the Friends of the Mekong offered recommendations on sustainable infrastructure development and connectivity; human resource development and building the foundations for a Mekong digital economy; sustainable water, natural resource management, and environmental protection; and COVID response and regional collaboration on health security.
The Friends of the Mekong meeting is further evidence of the expanded U.S. commitment to the Mekong region. In September 2020, foreign ministers from Mekong-region countries and Deputy Secretary of State Stephen Biegun, along with the ASEAN Secretary-General, launched the Mekong-U.S. Partnership. They pledged to deepen and broaden relations, focusing on critical issues like economic connectivity and infrastructure, human resources development, natural resources, and non-traditional security, including transnational crime, disaster preparedness, and health security.
The Mekong-U.S. Partnership includes the Governments of the United States, Burma, Cambodia, Lao PDR, Thailand and Vietnam. The Friends of the Mekong includes Australia, the European Union, Japan, Republic of Korea, New Zealand, the Asian Development Bank, and the World Bank. Brunei, the ASEAN Secretariat, and the Mekong River Commission also participated.
|Building on the successes of the Lower Mekong Initiative, the five Mekong partner countries (Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam) and the United States launched the Mekong-U.S. Partnership as a strategic forum for cooperation to promote the stability, peace, prosperity, and sustainable development of the Mekong sub-region.|
|Boat-racing festival, a traditional cultural feature of Mekong Delta |
Boat race, an indispensable part of the Ok-Om-Bok Festival in Soc Trang Province highlights the traditional values of Khmer people.
|China signs pact to share year-round water data with Mekong River Commission |
China has agreed to provide the Mekong River Commission (MRC) with year-round hydrological data, contributing to better river monitoring and flood and drought forecasting in ...
|Increasing erosion along rivers and canals threatens Mekong Delta province of Tien Giang |
The Mekong Delta province of Tien Giang is facing up with worsening river and canal erosion.