ASEAN Summit: Assertive China flexes its muscles as Trump gives conflicting signals

Bangkok (ANN News Desk) – Obama’s pivot to Asia is dead. Despite the Trump administration’s confrontation with North Korea dominating headlines for the past several weeks, in the back channels of a major regional summit, diplomats all whispered the same thing, the pivot was over. If anything, Trump’s obsession with North Korea and the administration […]

Myanmar’s reformist business tycoon leading economic evolution

Zaw Zaw, the chief of Max Myanmar group, a major conglomerate in Myanmar, has become the poster boy for the country’s uphill battle to outgrow its past and build a democratic society and a fully modernized economy. About half a year since the U.S. lifted economic sanctions against the Southeast Asian nation, which was under […]

Exclusive: Production Slowing Fast at Myanmar Mine That Rattled Tin Market

Output from a mysterious Myanmar tin mine that has disrupted the global market in the metal is falling sharply and deposits could be depleted in “two to three years”, senior mine officials told Reuters. A surprise discovery of large quantities of tin has propelled the formerly isolated Southeast Asian country into the position of third […]

Myanmar’s Strongest Ethnic Armed Group Says Drug Label ‘Not Fair’

PANGSAN, Myanmar: Myanmar’s most powerful ethnic armed group, accused by the United States of running a narco-empire that has flooded Asia with illegal drugs, has rejected the allegation, saying Washington has blacklisted its leaders for political reasons. The United Wa State Army (UWSA) boasts some 30,000 soldiers who control a secretive, China-dominated statelet the size of Belgium in the remote hills on Myanmar’s eastern border. After decades of […]

Military Officials, Cronies Released from US Blacklist

RANGOON — Burma’s former dictator Snr-Gen Than Shwe was among individuals removed from the US Treasury’s blacklist following the lifting of Burma sanctions on Friday. Another 16 senior military officials, including former Vice Snr-Gen Maung Aye, have been removed from the US Treasury’s Office of Foreign Asset’s Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons (SDN) List. Apart from senior military officials, military-related businesses […]

US Urges Burma to end North Korea Military Ties

WASHINGTON — Pockets within the Burma military may still be cooperating with North Korea although the new civilian government and the military leadership oppose such ties, a senior US official said Wednesday. During Burma’s years of international isolation, its then-ruling junta bought defense equipment from North Korea. The US has been pressing Burma to cease […]

‘Korea’s tech transfers key to Myanmar’s reforms’

YANGON, Myanmar — With Myanmar spurring political, economic and administrative reforms, technological assistance coupled with financial aid from Korea and other industrial powerhouses will help expedite the country’s ongoing transformation, according to a senior official at Myanmar’s ruling party. Hantha Myint, chief of the economic committee within the National League for Democracy led by Aung […]

In Myanmar and Thailand, two militaries moving in opposite directions

Kevin Rafferty says as the generals in Myanmar cede power in the historic handover to civilians, Thailand’s ruling junta should remember the dangers of prolonged military rule on a nation’s economy and social fabric. Who would ever have imagined it – singing karaoke, dancing and joking. This was not some theatre vaudeville event but the […]

Tun Tun Min must find answer to Kerr questions

Who is the best? That’s the titular question being asked this weekend at Thein Pyu Stadium as Myanmar’s lethwei golden belt champion faces up against yet another international challenger on October 11. This time, the man entering the ring with Tun Tun Min will be Daniel Kerr of New Zealand. A seasoned veteran of more […]

Tourism Pro: ‘What We Need Is Stability’

Burma expected to receive at least five million tourists in 2015, but so far there have only been about two million arrivals. This week the Irrawaddy spoke with Aung Myat Kyaw, chairman of the Union of Myanmar Travel Association, about tourism prospects for this year. Estimates have placed tourist figures for this year around five […]