In Mon State, expanding quarries threaten farms

On a recent afternoon in May, the farmers of OhnTitbin Village Tract were tending to their betel nut and rubber plantations when a loud blast erupted at the foot of Kalama Mountain and shook the ground. Workers had set off an explosion in a local quarry located about 10 km away and a cloud of […]

Trusted NLD veteran set to be next Myanmar president

Sixty-nine-year-old Htin Kyaw, a trusted veteran of the National League for Democracy (NLD) and long-time family friend of party leader Aung San Suu Kyi, is set to become Myanmar’s next president after being nominated by the party. His name was read out in the Lower House yesterday morning, in a culmination of weeks of speculation […]

Myanmar’s Suu Kyi lauds choice of ethnic and army-backed parliamentary speakers

Myanmar’s Aung San Suu Kyi pushed the message of national reconciliation on Wednesday, lauding the choice of representatives from ethnic minorities and the army-backed party as parliamentary speakers in a chamber dominated by her allies. NAYPYITAW: Myanmar’s Aung San Suu Kyi pushed the message of national reconciliation on Wednesday, lauding the choice of representatives from […]

Poverty, ethnic tensions and China top agenda for Myanmar’s new politicians

Expectations were running sky high as Myanmar’s first democratically elected parliament in more than 50 years, dominated by the former opposition National League for Democracy (NLD), convened for the first time on Monday tasked with choosing the country’s next president. After decades of stultifying military rule, all the talk was of a new era and […]

Burma’s capital: a super-sized slice of post-apocalypse suburbia

Driving through Naypyidaw, the purpose-built capital of Burma, it could be easy to forget that you’re in the middle of one of south-east Asia’s poorest countries. On either side of the street, a seemingly endless series of giant detached buildings, villa-style hotels and shopping malls look like they have fallen from the sky, all painted […]

World Bank’s US$100 million credit to Myanmar continues hydroelectric infrastructure development in Irrawaddy River Basin

Some of the 20 planned hydropower plants for Myanmar (formerly Burma), which is located in South East Asia, will be constructed within the Irrawaddy (Ayeyarwady in Burmese) River Basin, according to the Government of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar Ministry of Electric Power (MOEP). Myanmar has numerous hydroelectric projects in development, but last […]

Thai, Myanmar villagers fear being dammed by Salween hydropower project

 SOB MOEI (Thailand), Dec 4 — Tikuepor, an ethnic Karen from eastern Myanmar living on the Thai side of the Salween River, is one of thousands of people worried about losing everything if a multinational hydropower project goes ahead in this sensitive border area. A senior commander of the Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA), which […]

Floods, insects ravage Myanmar’s rice production

Rice production in Myanmar may decline by up to 40 percent from last year in some states due to flooding and insect attacks. Local sources say that rice harvests in Mon and Karen states of Myanmar are down 40 percent this year compared to those in 2012-13. Farmers along the Done-Tha-Mi river say wet season […]

Wary of Official Census, Myanmar’s Ethnic Minorities Count Their Own

YANGON — Before the Myanmar government conducts a major census next year, ethnic minority groups are collecting their own data, saying they are wary of trusting population statistics from government leaders who in the past allegedly inflated the percentage of ethnic majority Myanmarn people in the country. Ethnic Shan and ethnic Mon organizations, representing two […]