China, Myanmar in cooperation talks with MRC

Siem Reap, Cambodia, 14th Nov 2007

The Mekong River Commission (MRC) held talks with representatives from the People’s Republic of China and the Union of Myanmar at its12th Dialogue Meeting held in Siem Reap today.

The Dialogue Meetings are an annual event whereby the MRC engages with its Dialogue Partners on its cooperation framework and discussions on how the four member States of the MRC can increase their cooperation with the upstream neighbours.

Mr Nguyen Hong Toan, Secretary-General of the Viet Nam National Mekong Committee, Member of the MRC Joint Committee for Viet Nam and Chairman of the MRC Joint Committee for 2007/2008, told the meeting that cooperation between the MRC and its Dialogue Partners strengthened year by year.

“In particular over the past two years we feel we have moved to a new phase of understanding for a practical framework of cooperation. Through such an approach we can all reap the benefits of sustainable water resources development in the Mekong River Basin,” he said

“We are all aware that strong cooperation between the six countries is essential for our joint interest for wider development of the Mekong River Basin towards our peoples’ well-being while protecting environmental and natural resources. We have been pleased to note that our Dialogue Partners are conscious of the needs of those downstream when considering new developments and working towards regional integration and prosperity.”

In the past year China has supplied the MRC with 24-hourly water level and 12-hourly rainfall data for flood forecasting. The MRC Secretariat has provided China with the monthly flow data gathered from Chiang Saen (Thailand) and Stung Treng (Cambodia) hydrological stations. There have also been discussions on increasing the MRC’s level of technical cooperation in the areas of navigation and hydrometeorological data gathering.

The meeting heard of the Dialogue Partner’s plans for water resource development in the Lancang/Mekong River and on the progress of the improvements to navigation project. There was also discussion on areas of potential cooperation including in flood management and mitigation, mathematical modelling, study exchanges in the academic and private sector and environmental issues.

Representatives from the MRC Joint Committee and from MRC partner organisations also attended the meeting.

-ends-

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