At the Mekong River Commission (MRC), achieving a balance between the economic, social and environmental dimensions of development has become increasingly important. Identified as one of the strategic objectives which form the cornerstone of the MRC vision for an economically prosperous, socially just and environmentally sound Mekong River Basin, social considerations have emerged as critical in the achievement of natural resources planning and development objectives. Among them, gender is a priority issue. For the riparian countries, it is also an issue of national priority in order to increase the equitable economic and social benefits of development activities. Gender has been emphasized as a major socio-economic variable of a crosscutting nature that needs to be taken into account in all aspects of MRC’s development programming.
In this regard the MRC Gender Strategy and Policy were developed and endorsed by the governments of the riparian countries through the MRC council in 1998 and 2000 respectively.