The following are the outcomes of the 7th Mekong-Lancang Cooperation Foreign Ministers’ Meeting and the bilateral meetings between Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister H E. Prak Sokhonn and Foreign Ministers of the Mekong-Lancang Countries, released this evening by the Cambodian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation:

“Outcomes of the 7th Mekong-Lancang Cooperation Foreign Ministers’ Meeting

and the Bilateral Meetings between His Excellency Deputy Prime Minister Prak Sokhonn and Foreign Ministers of the Mekong-Lancang Countries

Bagan, Myanmar, 03-04 July 2022

I-The 7th Mekong-Lancang Cooperation (MLC) Foreign Ministers’ Meeting

The 7th MLC Foreign Ministers’ Meeting, which was held under the theme “Solidarity for Peace and Prosperity”, was co-chaired by His Excellency WANG Yi, State Councilor and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China, and His Excellency U Wunna Maung Lwin, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar, with the participation of Foreign Ministers of Cambodia, Lao PDR, Thailand and Viet Nam.

The Ministers commended the overall development of MLC over its six-year journey of cooperation, expressed satisfaction on the progress made under the Five-Year Plan of Action on MLC (2018-2022), and exchanged views on the status of implementation on the outcomes of the 6th MLC Foreign Ministers’ Meeting and the set objectives of the 3rd MLC Leaders’ Meeting. They also welcomed complementarity of the MLC’s roles in promoting ASEAN Community building and regional economic integration.

Amidst the mounting unprecedented challenges, the Ministers reaffirmed their commitments to safeguard peace, stability and sustainable development, and to promote synergy between MLC with other international and regional initiatives, including the Belt and Road Initiative, Global Development Initiative and Global Security Initiative. The Ministers emphasized the need to enhance solidarity and cooperation to better respond to common challenges so as to jointly boost economic development, advance people-to-people exchanges and promote the economic recovery of the Mekong-Lancang countries.

The Ministers agreed in principle to submit the Five-Year Plan of Action on MLC (2023-2027) to the upcoming 4th MLC Leaders’ Meeting for adoption, and to deepen cooperation on the key elements conducive to economic resilience and post COVID-19 economic recovery including connectivity, trade, digital economy, finance, production capacity, supply chain resilience, cross-border economy and intra-regional investment, and trade facilitation.

The Ministers appreciated the MLC Special Fund for supporting over 600 projects in numerous areas including water resources, agriculture, tourism, education, poverty reduction, health and women empowerment since its establishment, and praised the six countries for making great efforts to implement their projects.

During the Meeting, His Excellency Deputy Prime Minister Prak Sokhonn expressed his satisfaction on the remarkable progress of the MLC over the past six years and the establishment of necessary institutions to support the implementation of all the activities and programs conducive to the sustainability of the MLC framework. On top of that, at the critical juncture of the global health crisis due to COVID-19, the Mekong-Lancang countries have deepened cooperation to combat this most devastating disease with the establishment of the Mekong-Lancang Public Health Community.

On the future direction of the MLC, His Excellency Deputy Prime Minister welcomed both Global Development Initiative and Global Security Initiative, highlighting their complementarity to the promotion of peace and stability in the sub-region. He further shared important perspectives for the next phase of development.

First, make full use of this MLC framework as a positive catalyst to safeguard peace and stability based on our firm principles of consensus and equality. Second, reinforce the cooperation and joint responses on public health to enable the post COVID-19 economic recovery efforts. Third, deepen practical cooperation in water-related resources and jointly address the challenges linked to agricultural productivity and food security. Lastly, intensify the efforts in building the Mekong-Lancang Economic Development Belt in synergy with the New International Land-Sea Trade Corridor so as to seize the benefits arising from new trade and investment opportunities flowing from the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).

The Meeting concluded with the adoption of 5 outcome documents namely (1) Joint Press Communiqué of the 7th MLC Foreign Ministers’ Meeting, (2) Joint Statement on Deepening Customs Cooperation to Secure Trade and Facilitate Clearance under the MLC Framework, (3) Joint Statement on Deepening Agricultural Cooperation and Ensuring Food Security under the MLC Framework, (4) Joint Statement on Deepening Disaster Management Cooperation under the MLC Framework, and (5) Joint Statement on Deepening Exchanges and Mutual Learning among Civilizations under the MLC Framework.

II- Bilateral Meetings

On the sidelines of the 7th MLC Foreign Ministers’ Meeting, His Excellency Deputy Prime Minister met with His Excellency Wang Yi, State Councilor and Foreign Minister of the People’s Repulic of China to discuss bilateral relations and international cooperation of common interests of the two nations. Both Ministers expressed their strong commitment to support each other in multilateral frameworks, especially during Cambodia’s chairmanship of ASEAN, and to work closely to strengthen long-lasting bonds of friendship and to promote peace, stability and prosperity in the region.

Taking this opportunity, His Excellency Deputy Prime Minister also met with His Excellency Bui Thanh Son, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam. Both sides exchanged views on the international and regional issues of common interests as well as affirmed their commitment to working together to ensure the success of the upcoming 55th ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting and Related Meetings in early August 2022 in Phnom Penh.

During his stay in Bagan, His Excellency Deputy Prime Minister Prak Sokhonn held talk with His Excellency Don Pramudwinai, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Thailand. The Ministers exchanged views on the current development in Myanmar as well as the implementation of the Five-Point Consensus (5PC). His Excellency Don Pramudwinai praised Cambodia’s role and tiredless efforts in the peace building process and the delivery of humanitarian assistance in Myanmar, and extended his support for Cambodia’s chairmanship of ASEAN.

Source: Agency Kampuchea Press

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