The Lower Mekong Initiative (LMI) working group convened its fourth meeting in Ho Chi Minh City on April 25.

Vietnamese Deputy Foreign Minister Bui Thanh Son, US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Michael Fuchs, US Ambassador to ASEAN David Carden and nearly 100 delegates from LMI’s member countries (Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam and the US) and the group’s partners attended the event.

The two-day meeting aims to review LMI activities since the third meeting in Phuket, Thailand from September 27-28, 2012, realise cooperation programmes and prepare for the sixth LMI Ministerial Meeting scheduled for June in Brunei.

In his opening speech, Deputy FM Bui Thanh Son highly appreciated LMI’s achievements over the past four years, as well as the Mekong countries and the US for promoting cooperation.

He asked the LMI working group to focus on implementing activities approved at the LMI Ministerial Meetings while enhancing links between LMI and ASEAN as well as other subregion cooperation mechanisms, including CLV, CLMV and ACMECS.

On the first day of the meeting, participants discussed measures to improve LMI’s role both in the Mekong region and Southeast Asia, LMI’s connection to ASEAN goals, how to set up a LMI coordinating network in the region and increase Friends of Lower Mekong’s participation in LMI activities.

LMI was set up in 2009. Its six pillars include environment and water, healthcare, education, connectivity, agriculture and food, and energy security.-VNA