The Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Thailand attended the Second Mekong – US Partnership (MUSP) Ministerial Meeting, where he advocated cooperation to tackle challenges on public health and vaccines, non-traditional security, value chain resilience and environment as well as synergy between MUSP and ACMECS and other frameworks and participation of all sectors.
On 3 August 2021, H.E. Mr. Don Pramudwinai, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Thailand, attended the Second Mekong-US Partnership (MUSP) Ministerial Meeting via videoconference, co-chaired by the US and Cambodia and attended by the Mekong countries as well as the Secretary-General of ASEAN.
The Foreign Ministers of the Mekong countries and the US Secretary of State jointly reviewed the progress of MUSP cooperation and exchanged views on ways to advance cooperation in response to various challenges in the Mekong sub-region, such as the COVID-19 pandemic, climate change and non-traditional security issues.
The Meeting focused on cooperation on public health, in particular vaccines and capacity building.
The Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Thailand stressed that people should have equal and timely access to vaccines as global public goods. He urged MUSP to deepen cooperation in vaccine production, distribution and R&D. The Foreign Ministers of the Mekong countries took the opportunity to express appreciation for the US’ provision of medical supplies, medicines and vaccines to the sub-region.
The Meeting also attached importance to the post-pandemic economic recovery with digitalisation and MSMEs development, and supported continued cooperation on environment, especially clean and renewable energy, water management and human resource development through education, training and academic exchanges, as well as women and youth’s empowerment. Thailand invited MUSP member countries to explore the Bio-Circular-Green Economy Model (BCG) as a strategy for economic recovery with a more balanced growth and sustainability. On this occasion, the Meeting adopted the MUSP Plan of Action 2021 – 2023 which lays out principles and the structure of the cooperation framework and the projects the US plans for the Mekong sub-region.
MUSP was established in 2020, built on the Lower Mekong Initiative (LMI) which had been founded in 2009. MUSP aims at promoting stability, peace, prosperity and sustainable development of the Mekong sub-region through cooperation among member countries, namely Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Thailand, Viet Nam and the US.