Australia strengthens bilateral relations with Mekong Delta region
Australia’s Ambassador to Vietnam, H.E. Mr Craig Chittick, and Consul-General, Ms Karen Lanyon, are visiting the Mekong Delta from 27 November to 1 December 2016.
The Mekong Delta has been a major focus for Australian assistance in Vietnam for more than 20 years. Since 1991, around AUD670 million has been directly invested in the Mekong Delta, making a significant contribution to the socio-economic development of the region.
“Australia and Vietnam have close and important links in the Mekong Delta, including through our security partnership, economic partnership, and innovation partnership. I am excited to be visiting this region for the first time and to re-confirm Australia’s commitment to supporting its prosperity and sustainable development”, said the Australian Ambassador.
The delegation is visiting five provinces: Can Tho, An Giang, Kien Giang, Dong Thap and Bac Lieu. They will see Australian development projects; meet with local government leaders, education institutions, and Australian alumni; and discuss opportunities for strengthening our business partnerships.
The first half of the tour will be jointly conducted with a delegation from Germany, led by the German Ambassador to Vietnam, H.E. Mr Christian Berger. The delegation will travel along the Mekong River in Kien Giang and An Giang provinces to see the impacts of climate change on the Delta and how the Integrated Coastal Management Program (jointly funded by Australia and Germany) helps with innovative approaches and solutions to address those issues.
The delegation will then inspect the progress of Australia’s largest aid project in mainland Southeast Asia, the Cao Lanh Bridge, which is scheduled to be completed in late 2017, with Australia’s contribution valued at AUD160 million. The delegation will also meet with local beneficiaries of the Southern Coastal Corridor project, which has been jointly funded by ADB, the Republic of Korea, Australia and Vietnam.
The Australian team will also visit the Viet-Uc Seafood Company, a prominent Australian investor in the Mekong Delta, to learn about the role of Australian aquaculture technology in its commercial success and the development of sustainable economic growth in the local community.
The delegation will host a reception for alumni of Australian institutions, who have returned to the Mekong Delta and are making a valuable contribution to regional development.
Australia looks forward to continuing to work closely with its partners in the Mekong Delta.