United States, South Korea, and Mekong River Commission Partnership Launches

Senior officials from the United States, Republic of Korea, and the Mekong River Commission (MRC) launched cooperation on July 20 on water data utilization and capacity building for the Mekong region. The partnership will see specialists and scientists from Korea Water Resources Corporation, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and NASA provide at least six training events to professionals from Cambodia, Lao PDR, Thailand, and Viet Nam on various decision-support system topics, including modelling, water data utilization and knowledge transfer.

Mekong Heroes: Vietnam

Meet Ngoc Tuyet, a first-generation engineering student at Can Tho University and a participant in USAID’s Engineering Projects in Community Service (EPICS) Program. As a first-generation student and woman in a male-dominated field, Tuyet tells viewers about her motivation behind pursuing a STEM degree and discusses how her participation in EPICS has positively shaped her life and professional aspirations. Subtitled versions available for Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, and Thailand.

Mekong Regional Seed Program Resumes

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), in partnership with American Seed Trade and Asia and Pacific Seed Associations, held the Lower Mekong Regional Seed Workshop, June 8-10, 2021. The “Strengthening Sustainable Seed System for the Lower Mekong Countries” workshop was conducted by the USDA Foreign Agriculture Service (FAS) with technical expertise from USDA Agriculture Marketing Service. Over 70 high-ranking country representatives from the Public Seed Offices of, Laos, Thailand, Vietnam, and Cambodia along with senior representatives from international seed organizations including OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development), ISTA (International Seed Testing Association), and UPOV (International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants) participated. Key representatives provided updates on progress and challenges in seed trade in their countries focusing on capacities, and rules-and science-based policy environments with aim to foster cooperation and harmonization of seed policies among Lower Mekong Countries (LMCs), consistent with practices and approaches in the United States.

United States Hosts Vietnam Webinar Series Towards Modernizing Vietnam’s Power Sector

The U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Energy Resources’ (ENR) Power Sector Program (PSP), in partnership with the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC), provided three webinars to the Electricity Regulatory Authority of Vietnam (ERAV). These webinars focused on enhancing ERAV’s regulatory capacity to oversee power market reforms and grid modernization to advance the goals of the Japan-U.S.-Mekong Power Partnership (JUMPP), Mekong-U.S. Partnership (MUSP), and the Asia Enhancing Development and Growth through Energy Initiative (Asia EDGE).

“Towards a Resilient and Connected Mekong:” Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary Atul Keshap’s Remarks at the 2021 Friends of the Mekong Policy Dialogue

Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary Keshap provided opening remarks at the 2021 Friends of the Mekong Policy Dialogue on January 12, 2021.

United States and Vietnam Convene 17 Friends of the Mekong in Support of a Secure, Prosperous, and Open Mekong Region

On January 12, the United States and Vietnam co-hosted the first Friends of the Mekong Policy Dialogue under the new Mekong-U.S. Partnership. 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.

Message from our Ambassadors

Now more than ever, the United States sees the importance of a partnership with the Mekong Region. Perhaps the best example of that is the new Mekong-U.S. Partnership, which was launched in 2020 as a successor to the Lower Mekong Initiative. This partnership – with Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam and the ASEAN Secretariat – aims to improve lives in the Mekong Region by spurring economic growth, improving natural resource management, and tackling transnational crime. “We are open to working with all partners who shared our principled, transparent approach,” said Melissa A. Brown, Head of the U.S. Mission to ASEAN. Watch this video to learn more:

Sustainable Infrastructure Partnership (SIP)

The Sustainable Infrastructure Partnership (SIP) is a multi-partner platform established by the Friends of the Mekong for regional dialogue, capacity building, and training. SIP addresses three cross-cutting topics that are central to the Mekong River Basin’s development challenges: assessing the cumulative impact of infrastructure projects, incorporating socio-economic data in basin-level planning, and sharing critical water-related data and information necessary for science-based decision-making.

LMI Annual Scientific Symposium

Yangon, Myanmar, December 12-13, 2019. Over 100 researchers and scientists from the U.S. and the five countries of the Lower Mekong Initiative (LMI) – Myanmar, Cambodia, Lao PDR, Thailand, and Vietnam – gathered for the LMI Young Scientist Program annual symposium in Yangon December 12-13. Forty young scientists from the five Lower Mekong countries presented their…

Strengthening the U.S.-Mekong Partnership

The Mekong Matters to America The Mekong region – Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam – is strategically important to the United States. The region is a focus of the U.S. Indo-Pacific Strategy, and integral to our engagement with ASEAN. The United States aims to uphold sovereignty, transparency, good governance, ASEAN centrality, and a…

Joint Statement on the Japan-United States Mekong Power Partnership (JUMPP)

The United States and Japan value transparency, free and fair competition, and the unfettered flow of energy suppliesn the Indo-Pacific region which is vital to the stability and development of the region. The United States and Japan pledge to partner with Mekong countries to maintain and promote a moreustainable energy sector and quality energy infrastructure…

Opening Remarks at the Lower Mekong Initiative Ministerial

SECRETARY POMPEO: Thank you, Foreign Minister. I want to thank you, Thailand, for hosting this special ministerial marking a decade of the Lower Mekong Initiative. The United States has been a proud partner for those whole 10 years, and thanks to our work: 340,000 people have access to improved drinking water; 3,800 officials, teachers, and…