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International relations

Flashing cash, China spearheads Mekong economic integration

Beijing shuts out rivals, firming grip on region's all-important waterway

At the recent Mekong-Lancang summit in Phnom Penh, from left, Thailand's Prime Minster Prayuth Chan-ocha; Vietnam's Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc; Chinese Premier Li Keqiang, and Cambodia's Prime Minister Hun Sen.   © Reuters

BANGKOK -- Chinese Prime Minister Li Keqiang used a visit to Cambodia this week to strengthen China-led economic integration across mainland Southeast Asia.

Li celebrated his embrace of multilateralism with an op-ed penned specially for a Cambodian newspaper, and basked in China's triumph with its five southerly neighbors, all of whom share the Mekong, Southeast Asia's longest river. 

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