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GMS holds strategic role in Asia’s international integration and economic growth: PM

Vietnamese Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh emphasised the strategic role of the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) in the international integration process and economic growth of Asia while addressing the 7th GMS Summit held virtually on September 9.

PM Chinh's attendance at the summit is made at the invitation of Cambodian Prime Minister Samdech Techo Hun Sen.

The GMS’s cooperation outcomes have effectively supported the building of the ASEAN Community and shaping the regional architecture with ASEAN as the centrality, while promoting the ASEAN-China strategic partnership, PM Chinh said.

He stressed that it is the interest and responsibility of each GMS country to coordinate with each other to solve common challenges in the region and support each other for mutual development.

Political trust and cooperation on the basis of the principles of equality, consensus, mutual benefit, efficiency, practicality and respect for international law will continue to be indispensable conditions for the success of the GMS, the PM said.

He suggested priorities in GMS cooperation in the time ahead, firstly the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic with a focus on supporting the open, fair and transparent access to vaccines and treatment drugs.

The Vietnamese leader called on countries that are producing vaccines, including China, to further assist other nations, including Vietnam.

He proposed organising the annual GMS high-level forum with development partners to review GMS cooperation and attract more resources as well as consultancy from the partners.

Vietnam will continue to effectively contribute to the implementation of common goals and visions of the GMS, work together with neighbouring countries to build a GMS region of openness, safety, peace, prosperity and sustainable development, he pledged.

At the summit, themed "GMS: Renewed Strength to Face the Challenges of the New Decade”, leaders of the GMS countries and representatives from international organisations reviewed the progress of GMS cooperation since the previous summit held in March 2018 in Vietnam, and map out cooperation directions in the next decade, along with solutions to overcome the current difficult period.

The meeting adopted the GMS COVID-19 Response and Recovery Plan for 2021-2023 and the GMS Economic Cooperation Programme Strategic Framework 2030.

Accordingly, the leaders put forth the 2030 vision on a GMS region of integration, prosperity, and sustainable, inclusive development.

At the end of the meeting, they adopted a joint statement and agreed to hold the 8th GMS Summit in China in 2024./