Establishment of a Multi-Sectoral Platform on Water-Energy-Food Nexus in the Lower Mekong Basin critical for integrated demand-driven approaches to enhance people’s livelihoods

The UN Office for South-South Cooperation (UNOSSC) Regional Office for Asia-Pacific convened a workshop entitled, “Water-Energy-Food (WEF) Nexus Case Study Design and Multi-Stakeholder Platform Conceptualization” on 19 April 2022. The hybrid meeting brought together all implementing partners of the “Triangular Cooperation Project on Sustainable Development in the Lower Mekong River Basin based on the Water-Energy-Food (WEF) Nexus” [RoK-UNOSSC Facility Phase 3]” with an objective to deepen their understanding on their respective roles in the project. Ten participants from the Mekong Institute (MI), Mekong River Commission Secretariat (MRCS), the Science and Technology Policy Institute (STEPI) and UNOSSC attended the meeting.

The participants concurred that there is enough experience and learning on the implementation of the WEF Nexus approach in the Mekong Region to conclude that there is a need to establish a Multi-sectoral Platform to increase coherency among relevant stakeholders.  The Platform will consist of representatives of several government institutions in each country working on water, energy and food issues. If endorsed by the Project Steering Committee, the Platform will facilitate the requisite collaboration for successful WEF nexus demand-driven pilots and enhance participating countries’ ownership and project sustainability. It will enhance the chances of a successful project to respond to the needs of the people of the Lower Mekong Basin.

As a way forward, the idea and concept Note for the Multi-sectoral Platform will be presented to the Steering Committee on May 4. Thereafter, the design and constitution of the platform will be presented at a stakeholder consultative meeting.

About the RoK-UNOSSC Facility Phase 3

The “Triangular Cooperation Project on Sustainable Development in the Lower Mekong River Basin based on the Water-Energy-Food (WEF) Nexus” (2021-2025) aims to strengthen access to water, food and energy for vulnerable communities living in the Lower Mekong Basin (Cambodia, Lao PDR, Thailand and Viet Nam) through strengthening development approaches and management in these sectors. It will take integrative and multi-sectoral approaches in application of highly-demanded technologies on water, energy and food to improve the livelihoods of the people based on South-South and triangular cooperation modalities. The 5-year project is supported by the Ministry of Science and ICT, Republic of Korea, and the UN Office for South-South Cooperation (UNOSSC) leads the project in partnership with other institutions including the Mekong River Commission Secretariat (MRCS), Mekong Institute (MI) and the Science and Technology Policy Institute (STEPI) and will enlist the help of other UN Agencies.