The Vietnam National Mekong River Committee has played an active role in promoting cooperation in the Mekong river basin at a crucial time – a time of difficulties and differences, as well as a time of integration and regional cooperation.

The remarks were made by Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Pham Khoi Nguyen, who is also Chairman of the Vietnam National Mekong Committee, at a ceremony held in Hanoi on September 18 to mark the committee’s 30th anniversary.

Four members of the Mekong River Commission (MRC), namely Laos, Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam, signed the Treaty on Cooperation and Sustainable Development in the Mekong River Basin in April, 1995. This was considered one of the world’s first legal documents on river basin cooperation. The four countries committed to cooperating in various fields, including the management and development of water resources in the Mekong river basin.

Over the past 30 years, the committee actively took part in most sub-regional initiatives to develop bilateral relationship and border trade cooperation, especially in using and managing water resources in the Central Highland and Mekong Delta regions.

The committee also worked closely with the MRC and China to reach an extension of an agreement on sharing hydrological data on the Mekong River. The agreement aimed to improve the quality of flood warnings and reduce losses caused by floods in MRC member countries.

Minister Pham Khoi Nguyen said that the Vietnam National Mekong Committee will have to carry out heavy tasks in the future to catch up with rapid development of the Mekong River region and cope with complicated climate changes. Vietnam needs to make greater efforts to make the Mekong River clean and turn it into a river of friendship and cooperation.

Source: VOV