Cambodia To Host the 9th ACMECS Summit in 2020

AKP Phnom Penh, June 16, 2018 —Prime Minister Samdech Akka Moha Sena Padei Techo Hun Sen officially accepted Cambodia’s chairmanship of the 9th Ayeyawady-Chao Phraya-Mekong Economic Cooperation Strategy (ACMECS) Summit in 2020.

According to the official Facebook of the Cambodian Premier, the chairmanship handover ceremony took place in Bangkok, Thailand this morning after the ACMECS leaders concluded their 8th summit successfully.

As the Chairman of the 9th ACMECS Summit, Samdech Techo Hun Sen expressed his commitment to further tighten the traditional ties of friendship, good neighborhood and mutual interests between the ACMECS member countries to promote regional peace, stability, and development.

ACMECS was initiated at the special ASEAN Summit on SARS, held in Bangkok on April 29, 2003 by the then Thai Prime Minister H.E. Thaksin Shinawatra. ‘

Later it this was raised the idea of establishing what was then called the “Economic Cooperation Strategy”, with leaders of Cambodia, Lao PDR and Myanmar.

The objectives of this new initiative are to bridge the economic gap among the four countries, and to promote prosperity in the sub-region in a sustainable manner. Such prosperity will not only benefit the four countries, but also add value to ASEAN and its solidarity. Stronger Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Thailand will also mean stronger ASEAN. It is in this way that the new cooperation framework will act as a building block and move ASEAN forward at a more even pace, on the basis of self-reliance and shared prosperity.

Leaders of Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Thailand met for the first time on Nov. 12, 2003 in Bagan, the Union of Myanmar. At the Summit, the four Leaders adopted the Bagan Declaration, affirming their commitment to cooperate in five priority areas of cooperation, and endorsed the Economic Cooperation Strategy Plan of Action, under which 46 common projects and 224 bilateral projects were listed for implementation over the next ten years. The Leaders agreed to call this newly created economic cooperation framework the “Ayeyawady-Chao Phraya-Mekong Economic Cooperation Strategy or ACMECS”.

The joining of Vietnam to the group on May 10, 2004 has made ACMECS with 5 member countries. The emphasis of ACMECS is on using self-help and partnership to achieve sustainable development, including poverty reduction, in line with the UN Millennium Development Goals.

ACMECS will act as a catalyst to build upon existing regional cooperation programmes and complement bilateral frameworks with a view to transform the border areas of the five countries into zones of economic growth, social progress and prosperity, and to blend local, national and regional interests for common benefits, shared prosperity, enhanced solidarity, peace, stability and good neighborliness.

ACMECS activities shall be: complementary to and enhancing the existing bilateral and regional economic cooperation; deliverable with tangible results, utilising comparative advantages of each country; feasible and acceptable to the countries concerned; and, undertaken on the basis of voluntarism, consensus, and equitable sharing of benefits.

By Khan Sophirom