As Suu Kyi heads home, solving dam deadlock remains key to improving ties between China and Myanmar

The improvement of ties between China and Myanmar still hinges on a deadlocked dam project despite Aung San Suu Kyi’s largely successful visit to China as Myanmar’s de facto leader, according to diplomatic observers. The suspension of the US$3.6 billion Myitsone project on the Irrawaddy River by Suu Kyi’s predecessor Thein Sein in 2011 plunged […]

The Impact of Energy on China/Myanmar Relations

China and Myanmar have had a mixed post-war relationship, ranging from warm to hostile, with Burma being the first non-communist country to recognize the PRC in 1949, then expelling much of its Chinese population following anti-Chinese riots in the 1960s. Since the repression of pro-democracy riots in 1988, Myanmar has generally sought a closer relationship […]

Achieving Myanmar’s Energy Goal Will Be ‘Very Tough’: Report

Myanmar faces a “very tough task” to achieve the Ministry of Electric Power’s ambition to develop a modern national energy infrastructure in the next 15 years, an industry report said. The ministry has outlined plans to increase Myanmar’s power-generating capacity to nearly 25,000 megawatts by 2030. At present, the national capacity is only 4,360 megawatts—barely […]

China’s New Economic Priorities Offer ‘Exit Strategy’ on Myitsone Dam

New financial constraints imposed by Beijing to deal with China’s bloated economy could lead to the controversial Myitsone hydroelectric dam project in northern Myanmar being quietly abandoned. The Naypyidaw government has been under pressure from China Power Investment Corporation (CPI) to lift a suspension of construction imposed in 2011 by President Thein Sein, but new […]

Bangkok protests ‘cannot hurt Myanmar tourism’—Ye Htut

BAGAN—Despite recent concerns about a possible decline in Thai tourist arrivals, anti-government protests taking place in Bangkok cannot hurt Myanmar’s tourism industry, the president’s spokesperson said today. Ye Htut, who is also the deputy minister for information, told Eleven Media on the sidelines of the ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting that the recent Bangkok shutdown would […]

Ayeyarwady hydro dams in limbo

Ongoing violence and Myanmar’s incomplete legal framework are preventing the restart of development at six planned hydropower dams on the Ayeyarwady River in Kachin State, even after US$1 billion has already been invested, said an official at the firm developing the dams. The Upstream Ayeyawady Confluence Basin Hydropower (UACBH) Company – which is majority-owned by […]

China lobbying locals for resumption of Myitsone hydropower project

China Power Investment Corporation (CPI) is persuading local people to help push for the resumption of the Myitsone (confluence) hydropower project in Kachin state when a new government takes office in Myanmar after the 2015 elections, according to a source from Mungchying Rawt Jat (MRJ). MRJ is civil organisation made up of local residents displaced […]