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Upholding Mekong Cooperation for Present & Future Challenges: Data & Information Sharing for Regional Cooperation

03 February 2021


Southeast Asia has been a beacon of transboundary cooperation since the late 1950s, and especially since the signing of the Mekong Agreement in 1995. The Mekong Spirit of Cooperation has driven mutually beneficial outcomes despite numerous challenges causing impacts along the Mekong, including floods, droughts, disruption to natural water and sediment flow regimes from water infrastructure  (including from mainstream and tributary hydropower) and other developments, plastics pollution and increasingly climate change. Riparian States, the Mekong River Commission (MRC), and more recently the Lancang Mekong Water Resources Cooperation (LMC Water), with the support of the LMC Water Center, have been working together and exploring effective means and modes in addressing these issues with innovation and good neighbourliness, including data exchange.

In a transboundary context, achieving Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) Target 6.5 on integrated water resources management requires effective transboundary cooperation since 60 per cent of the world’s freshwater flows in shared basins. A coherent and coordinated approach to shared water management is important for all SDGs including health, food, energy, environment, peace and more. This webinar thus seeks to support SDG6 Global Acceleration Framework which aims to strengthen implementation of SDG6.

This regional webinar is being co-convened in joint partnership between:

  • Mekong River Commission (MRC)
  • United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) hosting the Secretariat of the Convention on the Protection and Use of Transboundary Watercourses and International Lakes (Water Convention)
  • United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP)
  • European Union (EU)

This regional webinar is being implemented through the financial support of the European Union.


TOPIC: ‘Data & Information-Sharing for Transboundary Cooperation’

The webinar aims to:

  • Provide an opportunity for transboundary dialogue with and between states, regional actors and international partners on key current or emerging issues facing the region’s transboundary rivers;
  • Outline potential next steps for strengthening solutions in the short, medium and long-terms to these current or emerging issues, including efforts to support capacity-building and financing.

The webinar outcome will be an “Issue Brief” that will summarize the discussions and potential next steps.


There will be two events associated with this effort: A webinar in Feb 2021 focusing on data and information sharing and a hybrid webinar/physical meeting in mid-2021 focusing on institutional frameworks for cooperation.

Follow updates on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn via the hashtags: #watercooperation #MekongRiver

  • Twitter: @UNECE_Water / @MRCMekong
  • Facebook: @UNECEWater / @MRCMekong
  • LinkedIn: @UNECEWater

Documents and Presentations


Document title ENG
Webinar agenda PDF
Importance of information and data-sharing for transboundary cooperation: perspectives from the Water Convention and other global processes by Ms. Sonja Koeppel, Secretary to the Convention on the Protection and Use of Transboundary Watercourses and International Lakes, UNECE PDF
Support from the European Union to the Mekong River Commission and the Water Convention as transboundary water cooperation platforms by His excellency Pirkka Tapiola, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary, European Union in Thailand PDF
Measuring data on transboundary water cooperation: update on SDG indicator 6.5.2 reporting in Asia by Ms. Solène Le Doze, Environmental Affairs Officer, UNESCAP PDF

Perspective of a Lower Mekong Basin state: how can improving data exchange help tomitigate flood and drought impacts? by  Dr. Somkiat Prajamwong, Secretary General of the Office of the National Water Resources, Vice Chairman: Thai National Mekong Committee (TNMC)

Data and Information Sharing in the Mekong River Basin and How to Ensure its Transparency, Quality and Timeliness for Flood and Drought Monitoring & Forecasting by Dr. An Pich Hatda, Chief Executive Officer, MRC Secretariat PDF
How to promote Lancang-Mekong River Basin Management by strengthening data and information sharing and collaboration by Mr. Dong Yanfei , Deputy Secretary General, LMC Water Centre PDF
The importance of data sharing to Finland for managing its transboundary rivers and lakes as well as the value add of the Water Convention by Dr. Lea Kauppi, Senior Advisor, Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE), Bureau Member, Water Convention PDF
Full video of the webinar by MRC Facebook  Link