Trade and Investment Facilitation

3rd April 2024 – Mekong Institute (MI) hosted an online meeting to inaugurate the three-year project, “Promoting Creative Industry for Heritage Tourism Development in the Mekong Region” also branded as “Creative4Mekong.” Supported by the Mekong-Republic of Korea Cooperation Fund (MKCF), the project aims to bolster creative industries, safeguard cultural heritage, and foster tourism development for socio-economic recovery in five chosen World Heritage Sites across Mekong countries.

Creative4Mekong, spanning from March 2024 to February 2027, will direct its initiatives towards the identified World Heritage Sites including Siem Reap in Cambodia, Luang Prabang in Lao PDR, Bagan in Myanmar, Ayutthaya in Thailand, and Hue in Vietnam.

During the launch, 30 representatives from Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam (CLMTV) hailing from various government agencies, international organizations, and sectors including tourism, culture, hospitality, arts, commerce, creative industries, and Intellectual Property (IP) rights, gathered to witness the project’s unveiling.  Among international organizations present at the event were UNESCO’s Bangkok office, the British Council, and the Asian Development Bank.

The implementation team presented the project’s goals, objectives, and a tentative work plan. The team also introduced the members of the Project Advisory Committee (PAC). In collaboration with the project team, the PAC will offer strategic direction and guidance. This will entail establishing clear directions, identifying areas for collaboration, reviewing progress, and ensuring the effective implementation of all activities.

Through capacity-building programs, technological support, exchanges, and research initiatives, Creative4Mekong endeavors to support Micro, Small, and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs), artisans, cultural practitioners, and government officials involved in the cultural and creative sectors.

In addition, Creative4Mekong will prioritize assisting cooperatives and groups, enhancing copyright protection, leveraging digital platforms for MSMEs advancement, introducing sustainable solutions for cultural tourism, promoting innovative practices, and establishing baseline data for effective decision-making and progress tracking.

Mr. Madhurjya Kumar Dutta, Director of the MKCF Unit and the Trade and Investment Facilitation Department at MI, emphasized the project’s significance in advancing sustainable development and supporting MSMEs as crucial economic contributors in the Mekong countries. “Our focus will be on classifying MSMEs within the creative industries and fostering the development of a tailored policy framework,” he stated.

Mr. Dutta also underscored the importance of safeguarding the industry’s uniqueness through IP protection, acknowledging the challenge of aligning with international standards. He urged all members of the PAC and stakeholders from the five Mekong countries to collaborate closely with the MI project team, ensuring the efficient and sustainable attainment of project objectives.

The meeting concluded with resounding support from all participants. This unified stance reflects a shared dedication to realizing the project’s vision of driving sustainable heritage tourism development across Mekong countries.

For more information on the project, please visit and

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