The Global Governance Department of the Swiss Agency for Development Cooperation (SDC) annually evaluates its regional programmes. Alexander Carius was invited to the 2007 annual programme as an external consultant for the Mekong Regional Programme on sustainability and trade. His tasks included critically assessing the current programme and proposing how future activities should be integrated into the existing programmes and regional priorities on trade and sustainability.
The SDC expressed particular interest in the current discussion within the German development cooperation regarding implementing the "Ankerland" (or emerging economy) concept, because it adopted a similar approach in their regional programmes for cooperation with regional leadership powers. The proposals were presented at the annual meeting of the SDC and discussed in working groups. The results of this initial evaluation were included in further internal planning routines. Furthermore, a 2007 mission in the region discussed proposals with partners to optimize the medium-term programme.