Signature of MoU between the Mekong River Commission secretariat (MRCs) and the International Office for Water (OiEau)


On Wednesday, 9th September 2020, took place the signing ceremony of the Memorandum of Understanding between the Mekong River Commission secretariat (MRCs) and the International Office for Water (OiEau) for cooperation on water resources management.


“I would like to first say how delighted I am to be here today at this virtual signing ceremony of the MOU to formalize and deepen the partnership between the MRC and the International Office for Water (OiEau).
We have come a long way. Now is the right moment to strengthen our cooperation and intensify activities for good governance for water resources management and development, and collaborative data and information management for supporting decision-making, as embedded in the MoU.
We live in demanding times. The Mekong River Basin faces complex challenges from increased development in the energy, transport and agriculture sectors that have profound implications on the environment and local livelihoods, positive and negative. More development and extreme weather such as floods, intense storms and droughts are already changing the nature of river basin we once knew” said Dr An Pich Hatda, CEO of MRCs.

“I am very happy that we have been able to organize this signature ceremony under the very particular circumstances that our countries and regions have been facing for several months under the COVID-19 crisis. It is important to demonstrate our joint ability to stay connected and with a strong appetite for new cooperation projecs in the future.

OiEau is honored to sign this Memorandum of Understanding with the Mekong River Commission Secretariat (MRCS), one of the world most important basin organizations, as the Mekong river is the lifeblood of 300 million people across Southeast Asia. The agreement covers a very ambitious range of potential cooperation topics to address the challenges of the transboundary Mekong river basin, from the challenge of technical interoperability of water information systems for data sharing and support to decision making to the challenge of political coordination for the planning and investments of big development projects such as multi-purpose dams.

After 10 years of experience in implementing its approach of Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) in Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam and Myanmar with the support of the French Water Agencies, OiEau is very pleased to open a new chapter of (transboundary) cooperation with MRCs. The pilosophy behing the IWRM approach is to be inclusive of all stakeholders and to seek a sustainable and optimal use of water resources for all. We are glad we share this vision with MRCs.

Finally, we will also warmly welcome enhanced commitment of MRCs in the activities of INBO, in the frame of its new action plan adopted during its  last World General Assembly, with the highly appreciated participation of Dr An Pich Hatda himself.

INBO and MRCs will greatly benefit from exchanges on their priority issues of common interest, in particular water information systems, adaptation to climate change, sustainable and equitable governance, and, last but clearly not least: protection of the environment. There is no water security without ecological security!" add Dr Eric Tardieu, Managing Director of IOWA and Chief Administrative Office of INBO.


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