A regional cooperation project centered on a long riverway passing through several nations, in addition to ensuring agreement between the nations involved, requires cooperation from the international community as a whole. This is because of potential friction that may inevitably arise during the course of such a project; types of friction that the states involved may not be able to resolve on their own. The Mekong’s upper reaches located in China, and five developing nations of Southeast Asia sharing its middle and downstream sections, and this has made mutual agreement quite difficult. But due to the high and vocal demand for development in the region, the actors have continued to make adjust their positions accordingly and cooperate with each other in spite of the difficulties involved in developing the Mekong region.
Support from multilateral development agencies and advanced nations have kept development moving forward up to this point, in terms of hardware infrastructure. Nations in the region have been active participants in the ADB-sponsored GMS program that began in 1992, which resulted in rapid build-up of physical infrastructure in the region. They are also cooperating through the Mekong River Commission for projects to develop the Mekong’s water resources, and also bolster human capital in the region through the Mekong Institute. Connectivity between different regions around the Mekong have been strengthened recently, to promote the flow of people and materials that would expedite development in the region.
In October of 2011, Korea announced its intentions for earnest participation in the development of the Mekong region through the First Korea-Mekong Foreign Ministers’ Meeting. During the meeting, Korea pledged active consideration to increased connectivity with ASEAN, sustainable development, and human-oriented development in six major issue areas. Korea also announced it would pursue several pilot projects at the Second Korea-Mekong Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in July of 2012. At this point, Korea must formulate a basic strategy, direction of cooperation and measures for mid-to-long term cooperation in participating in the regional development.
In this regard, the question of how we should look at Korea’s participation in the development of the Mekong region is an important one. Countries comprising the region including Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, and Myanmar are already major cooperative partners receiving significant ODA from Korea. This means that if viewed solely from a bilateral standpoint, Korean involvement in these development efforts would create much overlap with pre-existing ODAs and would be, in essence, simple repetition. (The rest is omitted.)
- 한국의 메콩 지역개발 중장기 협력방안(Korea’s development cooperation with the Mekong region countries)
- Kim, T.; Cheong, J. W.; Lee, J.; Shin, M.; Park, N. R.김태윤; 정재완; 이재호; 신민금; 박나리
- 대외경제정책연구원(Korea Institute for International Econom
한국의 메콩 지역개발 중장기 협력방안(Korea’s development cooperation with the Mekong region countries)
농업, 인프라 및 인적자원개발을 중심으로
서울(Seoul):대외경제정책연구원(Korea Institute for International Econom
|Series Title; No||연구보고서(Policy Analysis) / 12-20|
|Subject Country||Cambodia(Asia and Pacific)
Laos(Asia and Pacific)
Myanmar(Asia and Pacific)
South Korea(Asia and Pacific)
Vietnam(Asia and Pacific)
|Subject||Official Aid < Multi-Sector|
|Holding||대외경제정책연구원(Korea Institute for International Econom|