Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung left Hanoi on June 22 for the seventh Cambodia-Laos-Myanmar-Vietnam (CLMV) Summit and the sixth Ayeyawady-Chao Phraya-Mekong Economic Cooperation Strategy Summit (ACMECS) in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar from June 22-23 to forge investment and trade connections in the region.

The PM’s participation at the events is intended to also seek stronger collaboration with regional countries in water resource protection and human resources development, raising Vietnam’s status and leading role in Mekong cooperation.

Through the summits, Vietnam also hopes to reinforce affiliation with regional states as well as all-round partnerships with Myanmar .

The CLMV Summit, which was first held in 2004, is an open cooperation mechanism aiming to promote potential and advantages of CLMV and calling for support from other ASEAN countries as well as partners for the four countries.

The sixth CLMV Summit was held in Vientiane in March 2013, during which participants approved a Vientiane Joint Statement on fostering cooperation in transport, agriculture, energy industry, tourism and human resources development to narrow the development gap among ASEAN countries.

Along with 10 existing Mekong cooperation mechanisms, the Mekong states also have effective partnerships with the US, Japan, the Republic of Korea, and the Asian Development Bank.

Meanwhile, the ACMECS Summit, grouping Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam, targets common and bilateral economic cooperation, to promote the advantages of the region and member countries, also to narrow the development gap.

Vietnam officially joined the summit in 2004 during the first ACMECS ministers’ meeting, which was held in Thailand in November that year.

Currently, ACMECS has seven cooperation areas - trade-investment, agriculture, industry-energy, transport, tourism, human resources development and healthcare.

During the most recent summit in Laos in 2013, the leaders passed the Vientiane Statement and the ACMECS Action Programme for 2013-15 with major goals to bolster links between ACMECS and the ASEAN Community as well as implement the ASEAN Connectivity Plan.

In recent years, Mekong countries have maintained stable economic development with average annual growth of 6-7 percent. The ASEAN Economic Community, to be formed in late 2015, is expected to open new prospects as well as challenges for member countries in socio-economic development and narrowing the development gap.-VNA