VN supports co-operation between Mekong countries, South Korea

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VietNam News English - 40 month(s) ago 3 readings

Viet Nam will actively join and closely co-ordinate with South Korea and the Mekong River countries to launch activities within the Mekong-South Korea cooperation framework for sustainable development, peace, stability and prosperity in the region.

SEOUL —

The statement was made by Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh at the first FM talks between South Korea and five Mekong nations over economic development cooperation held yesterday in Seoul.

The annual meeting aimed to set up a new cooperation mechanism between South Korea and five Mekong countries, namely Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Viet Nam. Participants also focused discussions on enhancing cooperation for economic development and issues of political interest.

Taking the floor, FM Minh expressed his belief that the cooperation mechanism set up at the meeting would contribute to strengthening the fine friendship among concerned parties.

"This cooperation mechanism should be ensured to feature its own characteristics which make itself different from other current sub-regional mechanisms," he said.

Cooperation programmes must be practical in specific areas, closely connected with each member country's real demand while capable of promoting its own strength, Minh stressed, adding they should be developed to attract the participation of enterprises, which would be conducive to trading and investment activities.

The ministers compared notes on a number of issues concerning political security in the region such as the situation in the Korean peninsula, the nuclear non-proliferation, maritime security and safety, trans-national crimes, natural disasters mitigation and crisis management.

They adopted the "Han River Declaration," defining six key areas for cooperation, including infrastructure, human resources development, information and communications technology, environment and forestry, water resources management, agriculture and food security.

They appreciated South Korea's initiative on establishing the Mekong-South Korea cooperation mechanism and acclaimed Asia's fourth largest economy for doubling its 2008-level ODA for ASEAN nations till 2015, with the majority going to Mekong countries.

They agreed that the next Mekong-South Korea meeting will be held on the sidelines of the 45th ASEAN Ministerial Meeting (AMM) in Cambodia.

On this occasion, FM Minh met with South Korean Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Kim Sung-hwan. The two sides were pleased at the fine development of the bilateral relations and emphasised that they would co-ordinate to launch various economic and cultural activities to mark the 20th anniversary of the two countries' diplomatic ties.

They noted with satisfaction that the two ministries have been actively preparing for President Truong Tan Sang's upcoming official visit to South Korea.—VNS

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