Chinese state councilor lauds progress in Lancang-Mekong cooperation

September 21, 2020

Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi (L3) and other five Mekong country foreign ministers take a group photo at the beginning of the fifth Lancang-Mekong Cooperation (LMC) Foreign Ministers' Meeting in Lao capital Vientiane on Feb. 20, 2020. (Xinhua/Kaikeo Saiyasane)

Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi has lauded the achievements of the Lancang-Mekong Cooperation (LMC), saying such cooperation will enjoy a comprehensive development in the future.

Nearly four years after its launch, the LMC has improved its mechanism, expanded cooperation, strengthened internal impetus and promoted relations between the countries, Wang said on Thursday during the fifth LMC Foreign Ministers' Meeting in Vientiane, capital of Laos.

Six countries including China, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam, jointly established the LMC framework. The six countries share the same river -- called the Lancang River in China and the Mekong River when it flows through the other five countries before emptying into the sea.

Highlighting the LMC is entering a period of comprehensive development, Wang suggested that all six countries promptly implement the initiatives that have been proposed and advance the next stage of cooperation with a clearer direction and more dynamic momentum so as to achieve more fruitful results.

Wang said the LMC countries should jointly promote trade connections, dock the LMC with the new land-sea corridor and advance the development of the LMC economic development belt.

As for the public health cooperation, Wang called on the six countries to take the fight against the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak as an opportunity to explore establishing a joint public health emergency management system.

Wang also stressed the need to deepen water resource cooperation, saying China will give positive consideration to share the full-year Lancang River hydrological information with Mekong River countries to ensure the rational and sustainable use of water resources.

The LMC countries should make good use of the mechanism in agriculture to boost cooperation in this area, so that more products from Mekong countries can enter the Chinese market, he said.

Wang further pointed out that the countries should make good use of the special fund of the LMC to improve people's livelihood so as to let people enjoy benefit from the cooperation.

The LMC countries should also carry out cooperation in non-traditional security, strengthen governance experience exchanges, share development experience, and jointly maintain peace and stability in the border areas, he said.

Wang also called for promoting coordinated development of subregional mechanisms and strengthening their exchanges.

The foreign ministers from Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam agreed with Wang's suggestions.

They expressed firm support for China's ongoing fight against the COVID-19 epidemic, saying they are confident that China will win the battle at an early date.

They expressed satisfaction over the progress in the LMC projects such as those concerning water resources and people's livelihood and thanked China for its support to improve their economic and social development.

They also agreed to make preparations for the third leaders' meeting in 2020.