Media representatives and government officials from Lancang-Mekong countries have called for further media cooperation to cope with challenges in the digital era.
They made the call during the two-day Mekong-Lancang Cooperation Media Summit held Monday through Tuesday in Vientiane. The six countries of the Lancang-Mekong cooperation are China, Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam.
Established in March 2016, the Lancang-Mekong Cooperation (LMC) mechanism offers a new path of sub-regional development featuring equality, sincerity, mutual assistance and kinship.
The mechanism is made possible because the six countries share the same river -- called the Lancang River in China and the Mekong River when it flows through the other five countries before emptying into the sea.
The Chinese delegation attending the media summit was led by Huang Kunming, head of the Publicity Department of the Communist Party of China Central Committee.
Government officials attending the summit, held under the theme "Shared Vision, Shared Future," emphasized the need for media of the six countries to deepen cooperation.
Noting that media from Lancang-Mekong countries bear great responsibilities, Kikeo Khaykhamphithoune, head of the Lao People's Revolutionary Party Central Committee's Publicity Department, said that media should be practical, objective and fair to boost mutual understanding between peoples in the region and contribute to the social-economic development of the six countries.
Media cooperation of Lancang-Mekong countries could promote connectivity and let the world know the advantage of this region, said Tassanee Pholchaniko, deputy director-general of Thailand's Government Public Relations Department.
Government officials in charge of media should also focus on small-sized media and social media in the digital era, instead of focusing on mainstream media alone, she said.
"Mainstream media should use social media to make themselves function better and in a more efficient way," Tassanee added.
Media representatives from Lancang-Mekong countries also have high expectations for cooperation.
Tuo Zhen, editor-in-chief of People's Daily of China, said the Lancang-Mekong cooperation mechanism offered a wide platform for media to play active roles, and media should contribute to building bridges for people-to-people exchange among Lancang-Mekong countries.
Media from Lancang-Mekong countries should strengthen their cooperation to boost regional development, and explore ways to improve accuracy and effectively reach the audience, while playing the role of the media in guiding the society and promoting mutual trust and understanding, said Sounthone Khanthavong, director-general of Lao News Agency.
Media of the six Lancang-Mekong countries should be the "amplifier," "builder," "cooperator," and "defender" of Lancang-Mekong cooperation, said Zhou Zongmin, deputy editor-in-chief of China's Xinhua News Agency.
Soy Sophea, editor-in-chief of Derm Ampil News Center of Cambodia, said the Lancang-Mekong cooperation mechanism, put forward by China, would help narrow developmental gaps in the region and boost cooperation between the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and China.
Cambodian media will actively participate in Lancang-Mekong media cooperation and are eager to learn from other countries to promote Cambodia to the world, Soy Sophea said.
Over 120 people from media, governments and the business sector participated in the summit in Vientiane.