Vietnam commits to building prosperous, fair, healthy Mekong River basin: PM

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh affirmed Vietnam’s commitment to cooperation in building a prosperous, fair and healthy Mekong river basin while addressing the fourth Mekong River Commission (MRC) Summit in Vientiane, Laos on April 5.

Vietnam commits to building prosperous, fair, healthy Mekong River basin: PM hinh anh 1

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh speaks at fourth Mekong River Commission Summit

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh affirmed Vietnam’s commitment to cooperation in building a prosperous, fair and healthy Mekong river basin while addressing the fourth Mekong River Commission (MRC) Summit in Vientiane, Laos on April 5.

Chinh spoke highly of the indispensable role of the MRC as well as its efforts to effectively perform the functions and tasks of an international river basin organisation, helping affirm the value of the 1995 Mekong Agreement.

He took this occasion to thank the cooperation and support of dialogue and development partners and other international partners in the region that always create favourable conditions for Vietnam and other countries in the region to protect the main and natural flows of the Mekong River.

The Mekong River basin is facing great challenges due to synergistic impacts of climate change, the pressure of economic development requirements and the rapid increase in water use, which makes the river’s water resources degraded in both quantity and quality, directly affecting efforts to ensure water and food security for all countries in the basin, especially more than 60 million people in the area.

He took Vietnam, which locates downstream of the Mekong River, as an example. The flow from the upper Mekong River to the downstream and the Mekong Delta has severely reduced. The delta often faces severe droughts, and the saline intrusion tends to appear 1-1.5 months earlier with a greater scale and intensity than before. In 2020, the amount of sediment in the Mekong Delta decreased to only one third of that 15 years ago. This directly affects the livelihoods of more than 20 million residents in the Mekong Delta region.

In face of that situation, PM Chinh suggested the MRC continue to affirm its strong commitment to, serious compliance with and effective implementation of the 1995 Mekong Agreement, as well as the set of regulations on water use, particularly the fundamental principles of sovereign equality and territorial integrity, fair and rational use of water resources, reasonable maintenance of flows on the main stream, and prevention and limitation of negative impacts, especially for downstream countries.

Vietnam commits to building prosperous, fair, healthy Mekong River basin: PM hinh anh 2

An overview of the summit (Photo: VNA)

The Vietnamese Government leader emphasised that all relevant policies and actions of the MRC and its member countries need to put people at the centre, ensure sustainable livelihoods of them, and protect legitimate rights and interests those living in the basin.

It is necessary to strengthen cooperation in the prevention and combat of transnational crimes; strive to make the MRC an intelligence hub providing information, data and knowledge about the basin, and consulting services to help other sub-regional cooperation mechanisms perform their functions.

Countries need to promote development of green and circular economy, support regional plans for research and development of renewables such as wind and solar energy, and connect and upgrade electricity grids of the region, thereby contributing to sustainable development, ensuring energy security and responding to climate change.

Vietnam always upholds the role of the MRC and commits to working closely with member countries to successfully implement the commission's strategies, plans and action plans, for the purpose of building the prosperous, equitable and healthy Mekong River Basin that is adaptive to climate change, for peace, stability, development and prosperity of the ASEAN Community.

Concluding the summit, the leaders of Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia and Thailand approved the Vientiane Declaration, in which they affirmed the highest political commitment, as well as goals and principles of cooperation for the sustainable development of the Mekong River Basin; and identified the focus of cooperation of the commission in the coming time./.

en.vietnamplus.vn

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