Union Minister U Kyaw Tin participates in 1st Mekong-US Partnership Ministerial Meeting via Videoconferencing

Union Minister U Kyaw Tin joins 1st Mekong-US Partnership Ministerial Meeting via videoconference from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Nay Pyi Taw on 11 September 2020. Photo: MNA

U Kyaw Tin, Union Minister for International Cooperation, participated in the 1st Mekong-US Partnership Ministerial Meeting held via Videoconferencing at 5:30 pm yesterday from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Nay Pyi Taw. The meeting was co-chaired by Mr Pham Binh Minh, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam and Mr Stephen Biegun, Deputy Secretary of State of the United States. The Foreign Ministers of the Mekong member countries; Cambodia, Laos, Thailand and ASEAN Secretary-General also participated in the meeting. At the meeting, the Ministers welcomed the historic moment of 1st Ministerial Meeting of “Mekong-US Partnership” as the opening of a new chapter of cooperation among Mekong Countries and the United States. The meeting discussed on how the Mekong-US Partnership can contribute to the regional sustainable development and prosperity in the new global and regional context. Deputy Secretary of State pledged to contribute 153.6 million USD to the programmes and activities under the new partnership mechanism.
In the statement, Union Minister U Kyaw Tin shared the experiences of Myanmar’s endeavours in the fight against COVID-19 by striking the balance between protection of public health and mitigating the socio-economic impacts on the people and by adopting the COVID-19 Economic Relief Plan (CERP). He also expressed his appreciation to the United States for providing 18.5 million USD assistance to Myanmar to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. The Union Minister welcomed the “Mekong-US Partnership” as a demonstration of closer friendship and deepen collaboration between the Mekong Countries and the United States based on the principles of consensus, equality, transparency and complementarity for promoting peace, prosperity and sustainable development of the Mekong Region. The Union Minister recommended the continuation of COMET (Connecting Mekong Through Education and Training) and Young Scientist Programme of the “Lower Mekong Initiative (LMI)” which delivered benefits and opportunities to the young generation of Mekong countries, and also suggested the expansion of cooperation area in vocational training under the new mechanism.
The Union Minister welcomed the United States’ pledge of 54 million USD support to the Mekong countries to combat transnational crimes, and continuation of Disaster Relief Exercise and Engagement (DREE) of LMI in the new mechanism. He also thanked the United States and Japan for their joint efforts to contribute through “Japan-US-Mekong Power Partnership (JUMPP)” programme for energy security and to address the barriers of the regional energy integration of the Mekong region. He also expressed his appreciation to the US for the announcement to contribute 153.6 million USD to the programmes and activities under this partnership. The meeting adopted the “Joint Ministerial Statement of Mekong-US Partnership” and “Mekong-US Partnership Foundational Document”.
The new Mekong-US Partnership is upgraded by building upon the 11-year experiences of Lower Mekong Initiative (LMI) with improvements in response to emerging needs and challenges of the Mekong Region. Under the new partnership mechanism, the future course of action will give priority on the areas of Economic Connectivity, Sustainable Water and Natural Resources Management, Environmental Conservation and Protection, Non-Traditional Security, and Human Resource Development.—MNA

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