Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary Keshap provided opening remarks at the 2021 Friends of the Mekong Policy Dialogue on January 12, 2021.
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.
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:
The Mekong-U.S. Partnership expands cooperation between the United States and the countries of the Mekong region.
The United States and Mekong Partner countries released a Joint Statement on the launch of the Mekong-U.S. Partnership.
The U.S.-Singapore Third Country Training Program (TCTP) is a partnership between the Singapore Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the U.S. Department of State which jointly conducts capacity building course for Southeast Asian countries, in particular those in the Mekong region. TCTP supports ASEAN community-building efforts through its workshops and training seminars in developmental focused areas.
The Young Scientist Program supports young professionals by creating opportunities for collaboration among young scientists from MUSP member countries via joint research and workshops to share scientific knowledge, ideas, and experience.
The Connecting the Mekong through Education and Training program (COMET) helped narrow the development gap and increases regional integration by equipping youth throughout the MUSP region with market-driven skills by enabling them to succeed in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations Economic Community.
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…
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…
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…