Japan, Mekong Countries Adopt 3-Year Cooperation Strategy

Japan and the five Southeast Asian countries of the Greater Mekong Subregion adopted the Tokyo Strategy 2018 at the 10th Mekong-Japan Summit Meeting in Tokyo on 9 October.

The 3-year strategy will strengthen relations between Japan and Cambodia, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Myanmar, Thailand and Viet Nam. News reports said it will promote a strategic partnership by strengthening connectivity, improving human resource development and enhancing environmental protection. The strategy focuses on developing high-quality infrastructure.

Kyodo News reported that the six countries discussed the need to improve customs clearance and supply chain networks. They also agreed to cooperate on telecommunications, cybersecurity, and skills development for the digital economy.  

The 10th summit was attended by Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Cambodia’s Prime Minister Hun Sen, Lao PDR’s Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith, Myanmar’s State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi, Thailand’s Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-o-cha, and Vietnam’s Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc.

Japan hosts the annual Mekong-Japan Summit every 3 years.

At a news conference, Abe noted increasing investments from Japanese businesses in the Mekong subregion in the last 3 years. He also said more than 70% of official development assistance from Japan to Southeast Asia went to the subregion during the same period.

Read the news reports at Kyodo News and Japan Times.

Last Updated: 10 October 2018