The 1st Urban Mekong Corridor Dialogue

Co-organised by Cities alliance and UCLG ASPAC

Within the framework of a new joint regional initiative in the Lower Mekong Basin, Cities Alliance and United Cities and Local Governments Asia Pacific (UCLG ASPAC) are co-organising the First Urban Mekong Corridor Dialogue from 27-28 February 2024 in Vientiane, Lao PDR.

Hosted by the Vientiane City Government, the event will foster exchange, learning, and collaboration among cities along the Lower Mekong River basin, home to around 80 per cent of the nearly 70 million inhabitants of the Greater Mekong Subregion.

The subregion faces multifaceted challenges due to a surge in population growth driven primarily by rural-to-urban migration, organic urban expansion, and territorial sprawl along the Mekong corridor. Although this rapid urbanisation provides economic benefits, they are unevenly distributed, leading to high poverty rates in areas that lack infrastructure and investment. 

The dialogue will gather the representatives of local governments from Cambodia, Lao PDR, and Vietnam, to build and share common visions on inclusive and green urban development. 

National ministries will showcase their respective government policies and approaches toward fostering inclusive and sustainable cities. The event brings together the Mekong River Commission, two pioneering cities from ASEAN (Kuching in Malaysia and Samarinda City in Indonesia), and international development partners.

Key Sessions

  • Dialogues for a Joint Vision will explore inclusive green urban development in the rapidly urbanising Mekong corridor. 
  • Connecting Rapidly Growing Towns and Cities for Inclusive Green Development Along Transboundary Corridors will facilitate efficient knowledge exchange, promote best practices, and contribute to actionable strategies for sustainable urban growth in the Mekong corridor. 
  • A roundtable discussion will provide valuable insights and technical expertise to empower local governments to address solid waste management and ecosystem challenges. 
  • Urban Mekong Corridor Network: Commitments and Roadmaps will formalise collective commitments for sustainable urban development by towns and cities in the Mekong corridor. 
  • A site visit in Vientiane is also anticipated to be part of the agenda.

The Urban Mekong Corridor Initiative

The dialogue is part of the Urban Mekong Corridor Initiative, which aims to connect rapidly growing towns and cities for inclusive green development. The Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) funded the initiative through the Resilient Systems of Secondary Cities and Migration Dynamics Programme.


27 Feb 2024 – 02:30 – 28 Feb 2024 – 06:00


Vientiane, Laos

For more information regarding The Urban Mekong Corridor Initiative, click here:

Photo: Jean-Pierre Dalbéra,
Wikimedia Commons.

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