A number of Vietnamese and Lao delegates attended a seminar on investment cooperation and environmental protection in the central province of Nghe An on August 2.

Jointly organised by the Vietnam – Laos – Cambodia Association for Economic Cooperation Development and the Vietnam Association for the Conservation of Nature and Environment, the delegates heard reports on Vietnam ’s strategy for developing its green economy; environmental protection in line with sustainable development; and the integration of climate change issues into law and investment management policies.

Participants pointed out several serious pending environmental problems faced by both countries, including those related to forests, biodiversity, minerals, water resources and hydro-electric projects.

In addition to China ’s ongoing hydro-electric projects, both Thailand and Cambodia are increasing their usage of the Mekong River ’s water resources, which sprawls across southern Vietnam and Laos . These activities pose a serious threat to the safety and well being of local communities, as the river is home to nearly 20 million people and Tonle Sap Lake is one of Cambodia ’s major sources of aquatic products.

At the event, the delegates agreed to hold joint annual seminars on preserving the biodiversity of Truong Son mountain, monitoring cross-border wildlife trafficking and speeding up research on environmental security, as the waters that feed the Mekong River Basin are being widely tapped into.-VNA