Wed. Nov 30th, 2022

Senior agriculture and environment officials from the six Greater Mekong
Sub-region (GMS) countries met in Xiengkhouang, Laos on April 2 to
discuss environmentally sustainable agriculture and natural resource
management in the region, according to the Asian Development Bank (ADB).


The bank said in a press release that more than 130
participants attended the meeting, including officials from energy,
transport, and tourism ministries, as well as representatives from ADB
and development partners, national development organizations, and other
stakeholders.

Delegates discussed opportunities for
increased collaboration between the Working Group on Agriculture and
Working Group on Environment, co-hosts of the event and two of nine
working groups under the ADB-supported GMS Economic Cooperation
Programme. Both working groups must work together to tackle the growing
concern for water scarcity, climate variability and volatility, and
consequent rising risks of food and ecosystem service supply
disruptions.

Agriculture remains the backbone of economies
in the GMS and directly supports the livelihoods of nearly 200 million
people. However, agriculture gains have come at the expense of the
environment, causing forest and biodiversity loss, water pollution and
shortages, soil degradation, and greenhouse gas emissions.

The
two working groups are scheduled to hold their annual meetings on April
3, followed by a joint field trip the next day to visit environmentally
friendly agriculture projects in Xiengkhouang, one of the ‘green’
provinces in Laos.

In late 2012, both working groups
began implementing the second phase of their flagship initiatives: the
14 million USD Core Agricultural Support Programme and the 23.1 million
USD Core Environment Programme.

The six Mekong countries are Cambodia, China, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam.

Since
1992, the GMS Programme has invested more than 15 billion USD in roads,
airports, railways, power facilities, tourism infrastructure, and
disease prevention in the region.-VNA

By vivian