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IFANS PERSPECTIVES Major Donors’ Support for Countries in the Mekong Region: Overview and Implications for Korea 송지선 발행일 2024-05-07 조회수 10400
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1. Setting the Scene
2. Donors’ Development Cooperation Strategy toward the Mekong Region
3. Key Characteristics and Implications
4. Policy Implications


1. Setting the Scene

The Greater Mekong Subregion has become increasingly strategically significant due to heightened geoeconomic and geopolitical competition among major global powers. At the same time, the region is characterized by abundant natural resources along with substantial economic growth and growth potential. The same goes for countries within the Mekong region including Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Vietnam, and Thailand. However, it is crucial to acknowledge that there are significant development gaps among countries in the region, requiring a considerable amount of development finance for them to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030. Additionally, the persistence of numerous global challenges has also affected countries’ resilience and their progress toward achieving the SDGs. In response, major donors in the region, including but not limited to the U.S., Japan, Australia, and China, have announced their independent partnership initiatives with countries in the Mekong region. Such initiatives outline the utilization of development cooperation elements such as grants, concessional loans, technical assistance, and humanitarian assistance, as well as partnerships with other development partners including 
multilateral development banks, civil society organizations, foundations, academia, and private firms. The same can be said for Korea. The aforementioned countries in the Mekong region are key partners for Korea across various domains. Not only are they Korea’s close partners in trade, development cooperation, culture, peace, and diplomacy among other areas but they are also crucial allies in implementing Korea’s Indo-Pacific Strategy. Korea has articulated its vision and plan for enhancing partnerships with countries in the Mekong region as part of its Indo-Pacific Strategy and has made additional concrete commitments through the Korea-ASEAN Solidarity Initiative (KASI) while also fostering partnerships with other like-minded donors such as the U.S. and Japan. In order to translate policies into action, commitments have been bolstered by an increase of Official Development Assistance (ODA), revitalization of high-level dialogues, and augmentation of the Korea-Mekong Cooperation Fund. Thus, this paper aims to analyze the development cooperation approaches of major donors such as the U.S., Japan, and China toward the Mekong region and its member countries, identify key characteristics and challenges, and offer policy
recommendations for Korea’s development cooperation efforts.


*  Attached File #China #US #ODA #Development #Mekong
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[IP2024-06E] (송지선) 대 메콩지역 국가개발 협력- 현황 및 발전방안.pdf
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