Urban Development

The Greater Mekong Subregion is working to improve the quality of life and economic vibrancy of its cities and towns by using global best practices in urban development.


By 2050, the Greater Mekong Subregion is expected to be at least 50% urbanized. This will bring vast changes to the economies of the subregion. What was once a primarily agricultural area is transforming into a place where cities and towns are the main drivers of economic growth. Careful planning is needed to balance urban growth with environmental protection and economic equity so that healthy cities can be enjoyed by all residents.

The Greater Mekong Subregion is working to improve the quality of life and economic vibrancy of its cities through the development of national strategies and projects that incorporate global best practices into the subregion’s urban development. This work has included the first and second Corridor Towns Development Project, which is developing competitive and environmentally friendly cities along vital economic arteries in the subregion. Cross-border economic zones are also being developed.

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Urban Development in the Greater Mekong Subregion

Greater Mekong Subregion Urban Development Strategic Framework

Second Greater Mekong Subregion Corridor Towns Development Project

Summary of Proceedings

Deputy Director General of ADB's Private Sector Operations Department Christopher Thieme (left) and China Everbright CEO Wang Tianyi (right) after the signing. Photo: ADB.

ADB, China Everbright International Facilitate Clean Waste-to-Energy PPP in Viet Nam

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Regulatory and institutional reforms are needed to make infrastructure more attractive to private investors and generate a pipeline of bankable projects for public–private partnerships. Photo: ADB.

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Mekong governments need to create an enabling environment for public-private partnerships in infrastructure. Here are 4 ways to get the job done.

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Cargo trucks pass through the Second Lao–Thai Friendship Bridge over the Mekong river, which connects Savannakhet City with Mukdahan province. The bridge has helped improved the Lao PDR’s access to seaports in neighboring countries. Photo: ADB.

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