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Bangkok: External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar yesterday co-chaired the 12th Mekong Ganga Cooperation meeting in Bangkok, Thailand along with his Lao PDR counterpart Saleumxay Kommasith. In the meeting, Dr. Jaishankar prioritised the implementation of the India-Myanmar-Thailand Trilateral Highway. They decided to establish a Mekong Ganga Cooperation Business Council to take forward economic cooperation and expand the ambit of exchanges in agriculture, science and technology and water resource management. 

The meeting also explored new areas of development partnership, including through Quick Impact Projects and taking forward culture and tourism, and deepening museum-based cooperation.

Earlier in the day, the External Affairs Minister held a meeting with Thailand's Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign



Minister Don Pramudwinai. He also met his Myanmar counterpart U Than Swe on the sidelines of the Mekong Ganga Cooperation meeting. Their discussions focused on connectivity initiatives that have a larger regional significance.
 
Dr. Jaishankar stressed the importance of expediting projects that have faced challenges in the recent past, especially the India-Myanmar-Thailand trilateral highway. He also underlined the importance of ensuring peace and stability in border areas that have been seriously disturbed recently. He added that any actions that aggravate the situation should be avoided. 

Dr. Jaishankar also flagged concerns about human and drug trafficking and urged stronger cooperation among relevant parties for the early return of trafficked victims.




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