Mekong-Ganga Cooperation Mekong-Ganga Cooperation

About Mekong-Ganga Cooperation (MGC)

  • The Mekong-Ganga Cooperation (MGC) is an initiative by six countries – India and five ASEAN countries, namely, Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam for cooperation in tourism, culture, education, as well as transport and communications. It was launched in 2000 at Vientiane, Lao PDR. Both the Ganga and the Mekong are civilizational rivers, and the MGC initiative aims to facilitate closer contacts among the people inhabiting these two major river basins. The MGC is also indicative of the cultural and commercial linkages among the member countries of the MGC down the centuries.
  • The 1st MGC Ministerial Meeting was held in Vientiane from 9-13 November 2000. It issued the Vientiane Declaration on MGC covering cooperation in the 4 traditional areas. The 2nd MGC Ministerial Meeting was held in Hanoi on 28 July 2001, and adopted the Hanoi Programme of Action (HPA), a detailed Work Programme for six years (July 2001 to July 2007), providing specific actions for cooperation, in the 4 traditional areas. The 3rd MGC Ministerial Meeting was held in Phnom Penh on 20 June 2003 and provided additional political impetus to the MGC initiative. It adopted the Phnom Penh Roadmap.
  • On the margins of the ASEAN Summit in Cebu, the Philippines, in January 2007, Thailand, the then chairman of the MGC, handed over chairmanship to India on 12 January 2007. The 5th MGC Ministerial Meeting was held at Manila, Philippines on 1 August 2007, and was chaired by India.
  • India hosted the 6th MGC Ministerial Meeting on 4 September 2012, in New Delhi preceded by the MGC Senior Officials Meeting on 3 September 2012. The Meeting was chaired by the then EAM, Shri. S.M. Krishna, and saw active participation from all the MGC partner countries in which beyond the four existing traditional areas of cooperation, viz. tourism, culture, education, and transport & communications, our Ministers agreed to widen collaboration into newer areas, such as SME cooperation, conservation of Rice Germplasm, setting up a Working Group on Health, establishment of a Common Archival Resource Centre (CARC) at the Nalanda University, and undertaking of India–Cambodia Laos Myanmar Vietnam Quick Impact Projects.
  • The Ministers also noted the positive developments in India-Myanmar-Thailand Trilateral Highway project and other ongoing cooperation under the India-ASEAN framework to realize India-ASEAN Connectivity.
  • The 7th MGC Ministerial Meeting was held in Vientiane on 24thJuly, 2016 in a cordial atmosphere. Indian side was led by Gen. (Retd.) Dr. V. K. Singh, Minister of State for External Affairs. The Ministers of Foreign Affairs of other MGC countries were present at the meeting.
  • At the meeting, a Plan of Action (POA) for the period 2016-18, drafted by India, was endorsed as the core guide for future action. India announced 50 new ITEC scholarships for MGC countries in areas of culture, tourism, engineering, management, teachers training, film directing, sound, lighting and stage management, in addition to 900 scholarships already given every year. New Centres of excellence in Software Development and Training as well as Capacity building programmes in law enforcement, financial markets, ICT and space, to address the requirements of MGC partners, was also announced. The Meeting welcomed implementation of 11 Quick Impact Projects.
  • MGC partners were invited as 'Guests of Honour' in the 5th International Buddhist Conclave held from 2-5 October 2016 in Delhi, Varanasi and Sarnath. 275 persons from 39 countries including prominent Buddhist personalities from Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam participated.
November 2016


MGC MEMBER COUNTRIES Laos Vietnam Cambodia India Myanmar Thailand