China to aid Mekong's development

China to aid Mekong's development

Mekong river in Chiang Rai province. (Bangkok Post file photo)
Mekong river in Chiang Rai province. (Bangkok Post file photo)

China has pledged to work closely with Thailand under the Lancang-Mekong Cooperation (LMC) framework to help promote the development of the Mekong Basin region.

The pledge was conveyed by China's Ambassador to Thailand, Lyu Jian, in a statement released on Sunday to mark the start of the second Lancang-Mekong Cooperation Week, which will end on March 24, as well as to commemorate the third anniversary of the establishment of the LMC -- a sub-regional cooperation mechanism launched in 2016 that counts China, Cambodia, Laos Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam as its members.

Mr Lyu said China has been closely cooperating with Thailand to work on water resource management, cross-border trade, and promote e-commerce in rural areas. According to the ambassador, both countries are planning to expand their area of cooperation to include agriculture, vocational education, training, health care, youth exchanges, and environment protection.

He said that within three short years, by using the six countries' geographical proximity, cultural affinity and economic linkages to promote all-round cooperation, almost 30 infrastructure projects have been initiated and about 100 small-and-medium enterprises (SMEs) have been established under the LMC's cooperation framework.

According to Mr Lyu, these successes show how the Mekong River can be used to further promote economic and social development all along the basin.

"The LMC shall remain as an inclusive organisation that will benefit those who live along the river, and it will continue to collaborate, cooperate and complement other existing regional mechanisms," he said.

March 23 will be celebrated as LMC Week in the future, as the first LMC Leader's meeting happened on that date.

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