Health Cooperation and Human Resource Development


Countries in the Greater Mekong Subregion aim for Sustainable Development Goals for health. Yet, the subregion still experiences high incidence of communicable diseases and drug-resistant microorganisms. GMS countries also suffer from inefficient health systems due to lack of synergies, economies of scale, and scope; and there are few common solutions to common health problems.

The Working Group on Health Cooperation seeks to address collective action problems of regional health investments and limited resources for health that tend to prioritize national investments.



After more than 20 years, the Working Group on Human Resource Development is being restructured to focus on health, given the strategic importance of regional cooperation in this area.

Human resource development, however, continues to be an important sector in the Greater Mekong Subregion. At an extraordinary meeting of the Working Group on Human Resource Development in Bangkok on 4 July 2017, participants agreed on the following key points:

  • Refocus the working group and its approach, given the new strategic direction toward health cooperation.
  • Continue to respond to demand for analysis and similar initiatives in higher education at the country level.
  • Cooperate with other development partners with expertise on labor and migration.
  • Integrate social development across all sectors of the GMS.
  • Develop the scope for a new Working Group on Health Cooperation.

Learn more:

Strategic Framework and Action Plan for Human Resource Development in the Greater Mekong Subregion (2013–2017)
Strategic Framework and Action Plan for Human Resource Development in the Greater Mekong Subregion (2009-2012)
Summary of Proceedings



Strengthened connectivity amongst countries along the Greater Mekong Subregion southern coastal corridor will help reduce HIV risks and provide new opportunities for growth and employment. Photo: ADB.

ADB, Australia Provide $37 Million to Keep Viet Nam Road Upgrades on Track

MANILA, PHILIPPINES (12 February 2013) – The Asian Development Bank and Government of Australia are providing an extra $37 million for a project improving roads and tackling HIV and human trafficking risks along a key coastal route linking Viet Nam and Cambodia.

News Releases

ADB Supports Lao PDR, Viet Nam in Addressing HIV Threat in Border Areas

MANILA, PHILIPPINES (31 October 2012) - The Asian Development Bank is providing $20 million in grants and loans to support Lao People's Democratic Republic and Viet Nam prevent the spread of HIV infections in 23 border provinces where risks are growing due to increased population movement and commercial activities along economic corridors.

News Releases

Earnings and Quality of Female Labor in the Border Areas of Viet Nam and Implications for Greater Mekong Subregion Cooperation

Border-gate economic zones (BEZs) are symbols of the increased cross-border exchange and the development initiative of the border areas in the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS). Over the past decade, BEZs have been able to attract a great number of women workers seeking for new job opportunities.