Cooperation with Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) Lower Mekong Initiative (LMI)
China, which implemented a preferential trade agreement with Asean in 2010, has established a state-backed private equity fund to invest in Southeast Asia’s infrastructure, energy and natural resources that aims to have $ 10 billion in assets under management. Its $ 6 trillion economy is about 15 times the combined size of others in the Greater Mekong Subregion, which includes Myanmar, Cambodia, Laos, Thailand and Vietnam.
The U.S. began the Lower Mekong Initiative in 2009 to boost ties with Cambodia, Laos, Thailand and Vietnam on health, education, the environment and infrastructure. After convening that meeting, Clinton will take executives to meet business leaders at a forum in Siem Reap, Cambodia.
Japan began similar meetings with Mekong nations in 2009 and in April pledged to invest 600 billion yen ($7.5 billion) in infrastructure over the next three years. South Korea last year held its first-ever meeting with representatives from countries along the river and is seeking further cooperation.