Beijing (VNA) - Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh has highlighted that cooperation among upper and lower Mekong countries in sustainable managing and using the Mekong River water resources should be the top priority of the Mekong-Lancang partnership.

Speaking at the first Mekong-Lancang Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Yunnan, China on November 12, the Deputy PM said that collaboration between the countries in infrastructure development, transport connection as well as the creation of favourable condition for trade and investment, and poverty reduction should also be strengthened.

Underscoring the vital significance of the Mekong River to people along the river’s basin and in Vietnam in particular, he proposed that the six Mekong countries should focus on realising specific projects, bringing practical benefits to the people and ensuring the interest of all parties.

Deputy PM Minh also emphasised that the Mekong-Lancang cooperation should help boost the ASEAN-China partnership, contributing to the process of building the ASEAN Community.

At the same time, the mechanism should support and coordinate closely with other existing sub-regional cooperation mechanisms such as the Greater Mekong Sub-Region Cooperation and the Mekong River Commission, thus optimising the resources and helping the Mekong countries make the full use of opportunities and minimising challenges during the development process, he added.

During the meeting, participants agreed that affiliation between the six Mekong countries - China, Cambodia, Myanmar, Laos, Thailand and Vietnam – will help boost socio-economic development, improving people’s living conditions, strengthening regional integration and contributing to the formation of the ASEAN Community.

The ministers shared their stances on the building of a cooperation framework among the six countries, aiming to reinforce trust and friendly neighbourliness, and fostering collaboration in economics, sustainable development, culture, society, people-to-people contacts, security and politics.

Noting the importance of the Mekong River to the growth of all the six countries, they concurred to increase partnership in sustainable management and exploitation of the Mekong River water resources as well as protecting the ecological environment in the river.

The ministers issued a joint statement affirming their wish to further bolster their cooperation for a Mekong region of peace, stability and sustainable development.

On the sidelines of the event, Deputy PM Minh also had a meeting with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, discussing measures to strengthen the Vietnam-China comprehensive strategic partnership.-VNA