Trade and Investment Facilitation

Khon Kaen, Thailand – April 10, 2024 –  Mekong Institute (MI) hosted a delegation from the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI) at its headquarters, setting the stage for fruitful discussions on avenues for regional collaboration. Both parties engaged in dialogue aimed at leveraging each other’s expertise in managing their flagship projects – MI’s Mekong-Korea Cooperation Fund (MKCF) and GGGI’s Brunei Darussalam-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines East ASEAN Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA) – Republic of Korea (RoK) Cooperation Fund (BKCF).

GGGI expressed keen interest in understanding MI’s role as the Fund Coordinator of the MKCF, an established funding mechanism supported by the RoK. MKCF, initiated in 2014, focuses on financing regional projects aligned with national priorities to foster integration and cooperation within the Mekong region and the RoK.

During the meeting, MI provided insights into MKCF’s progress, achievements, and ongoing initiatives, including the MKCF Finance Application System and the “Capacity Building on Regional Project Design, Implementation, Monitoring & Evaluation” (PRIME) Project. The said project aims to enhance the capacities of the MKCF projects’ prospective proponents in the five Mekong countries and the RoK.

GGGI, in turn, shared details about its profile and projects aimed to promote inclusive and balanced growth in the Southeast Asia region, particularly within the BIMP-EAGA framework.

Established in 2021 by the RoK, BKCF is among the various initiatives within GGGI’s global practice. It aims to bolster partnerships between BIMP-EAGA and the RoK to support the region’s vision of a “resilient, inclusive, sustainable, and economically (R.I.S.E) competitive BIMP-EAGA to narrow the development gap”. Focusing on environment, tourism, connectivity, and agriculture & fisheries as priority sectors, BKCF is committed to providing grants for projects addressing strategic country needs and priorities of BIMP-EAGA.

Mr. Madhurjya K Dutta, Director of MKCF and MI’s Trade and Investment Facilitation Department, led the MI delegation, while Mr. Hakseouk Ryu, Director of BKCF led the BKCF-GGGI delegation accompanied by Mr. Feelgeun Song, Senior Officer of the Korea Liaison Unit.

Highlighting the potential for collaboration, BKCF-GGGI and MI referred to their existing Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed last year, focusing on enhanced technical cooperation in delivering services to the Mekong region countries. Possible joint activities include leveraging the signed MOU for future initiatives and exploring opportunities for GGGI’s participation in the Mekong Forum 2024.

MI and GGGI both hold the distinction of being intergovernmental organizations. MI’s primary focus lies in regional cooperation and integration for sustainable development within the GMS, while GGGI champions global green growth and climate resilience.

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