Side event to the Commission on Narcotic Drugs 52nd Session
15 years of Partnership: Opportunities and Challenges Countries of the Greater Mekong Sub-region and UNODC
VIENNA (Austria), 11 March 2009 - Fifteen years ago representatives of the governments of China, Laos, Myanmar and Thailand met with UNODC and signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Drug Control.
The aim of this memorandum was to deal more effectively with what was then the growing problem of drugs in Southeast Asia.
Little did they know at the time that this historical signing ceremony would form the basis for a major body of drug control cooperation in the Greater Mekong Sub region which has now lasted a decade and a half.
Aware of the benefits of increased regional cooperation, two years later in 1995, another two countries joined the group. These were Cambodia and Viet Nam.
The purpose of the MOU has been to commit its signatories to combine forces and share a common view on the fight against the drug menace. They also agreed to jointly approach their partners in the international community for support in this huge task. Equally importantly, they themselves have committed to funding a number of these initiatives themselves.
In the framework of the High Level Segment of the 52nd Session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs, held in Vienna on 11-12 March 2009, UNODC RCEAP and the 6 MOU countries have organized a side event in order to highlight the achievements of the partnership and to discuss the road ahead with the international community.
The side event included a video/audio exhibition (available on line) and a Ministerial consultation attended by representatives of 15 countries.