Agriculture

Agriculture is the backbone of the Greater Mekong Subregion’s economies. With over 60% of the subregion’s 340 million inhabitants engaged in small-scale agriculture, it directly supports the livelihoods of nearly 200 million people.

The Working Group on Agriculture (WGA) has been working toward the implementation of priority projects under the Core Agriculture Support Program.


While agriculture is the cornerstone of many families’ livelihoods, it is also exacting a toll on the environment, contributing to forest and biodiversity loss, water pollution and shortages, soil degradation, and greenhouse gas emissions.

People and governments in the Greater Mekong Subregion are working to develop agricultural practices that simultaneously conserve land and water resources, while at the same time increasing the productivity and profitability of agriculture, particularly for small-scale farmers.

Countries are pooling resources and expertise to increase the competitiveness of their agricultural products and encourage investment in agribusiness, while at the same time conserving the environment and natural resources. This involves research and technology that emphasizes climate-friendly agricultural development, including participation by the private sector with a focus on food security. This work is being guided by the Core Agriculture Support Program Phase II (CASP II) 2011-2020, supported by the Government of Sweden (Sida), Nordic Development Fund, Water Financing Partnership Facility, and Asian Development Bank.

At the 2nd GMS Agriculture Ministers' Meeting in Siem Reap, Cambodia on 6-8 September 2017, the ministers endorsed a strategy to promote safe and environment-friendly agriculture products, and a plan to strengthen value chain integration, involving smallholder farmers, rural women, as well as small and medium-sized agro-enterprises.

Related

Strategy for Promoting Safe and Environment-Friendly Agro-Based Value Chains and Siem Reap Action Plan, 2018-2022
Core Agriculture Support Program Phase II (2011-2015)
Core Agriculture Support Program Phase I (2006-2010)
Working Group on Agriculture (WGA)

Focal Persons at the Asian Development Bank

  • Srinivasan Ancha
    Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture Division,
    Southeast Asia Department
  • Pavit Ramachandran
    Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture Division,
    East Asia Department

Other Concerned Staff & Consultants

  • Rhodora Concepcion
    Thailand Resident Mission,
    Southeast Asia Department
  • Flordeliza Melendez
    Regional Cooperation and Operations Coordination Division,
    Southeast Asia Department/GMS Secretariat

Send inquiries to GMS Secretariat.

Jars of coffŽee for sale in Ha Noi. Viet Nam has registered geographical indications for coffee and tea products, such as Buon Ma Thuot coffee, which is produced in the Central Highlands. Photo: brians101/iStock.com.

Made in the GMS: How GI Certification Can Boost Food Exports

In the Greater Mekong Subregion, countries have started to adopt laws and policies on geographical indications to protect locally sourced products that are made using traditional methods in their region of origin.

Articles

Countries in the Greater Mekong Subregion are taking a regional approach to food policy to protect the interests of consumers and suppliers in both domestic and export markets. Photo: ADB.

Establishing a Sustainable Food Supply for the Greater Mekong Subregion

A regional approach to food policy driven by business and public interests can better protect consumers and suppliers in both domestic and export markets, support scaling up of production, and facilitate market access and Greater Mekong Subregion product branding and marketing.

Articles

The food traceability systems in the pilot project use barcodes to track information at the source (e.g., date of harvest/production) and until point of sale. Photo: ADB.

Using Barcodes to Track Food Safety from Farm to Table in the Mekong Region

A pilot project is introducing the use of barcodes to track the quality and safety of food in the Greater Mekong Subregion from “farm to shelf, then table.”

Articles

GMS Countries to Strengthen Regional Cooperation on Food Safety, Agriculture

PU’ER CITY, PEOPLE’S REPUBLIC OF CHINA (31 May 2018) — Senior agriculture officials from the six member countries of the Greater Mekong Subregion agreed to increase regional cooperation in food safety, boost the trading of climate-friendly agriculture products, and accelerate the implementation of the five-year GMS Strategy and Siem Reap Action Plan endorsed by the Second GMS Agriculture Ministers’ Meeting.

News Releases


Core Agriculture Support Program Phase II 2011-2015

A more integrated, harmonious, prosperous, and equitable Greater Mekong Subregion requires agriculture to be the lead contributing sector. Regional cooperation in the agriculture sector is guided by the Core Agriculture Support Program (CASP), which is implemented by the Working Group on Agriculture.

Under CASP Phase I (2006-2010), GMS member countries expanded agriculture trading, resulting in sizable gains in the global market.