Myanmar renews SEZ push

Myanmar’s special economic zones (SEZs) are a central part of a revitalised economic strategy in which increased manufacturing activity will play a key role. And breathing renewed life and energy into stagnant or stalled SEZs has moved to the top of the government’s agenda. “SEZs promote the transfer of technology, encourage infrastructure development and attract […]

Japanese-style visualized books make studying fun in Myanmar

YANGON–First-grade children here are finding studying more fun with Japanese-style highly visualized textbooks replacing their word-packed, picture-scarce old ones. The new textbooks have been adopted from the start of Myanmar’s new school year in June and are the first upgrade in about 20 years, thanks to a project spearheaded by the Japan International Cooperation Agency […]

Keeping Myanmar’s Lights On

Myanmar is one of the world’s fastest growing economies, with projected annual growth of 7.8% in gross domestic product for the financial year to March 31 2017, according to the World Bank. Only those who have not spent time with its overwhelmingly young and enthusiastic people — or those unaware of the vast potential of […]

Myanmar braces for 30% drop in foreign investment

Foreign investment in Myanmar appears poised to plunge roughly 30% for the year ending March 31 amid the absence of new oil and gas projects, highlighting the need for the government to lure other industries with deregulation and firm economic policy plans. Myanmar received about $6 billion in foreign direct investment during the 11 months […]

How Did Myanmar’s Reforms Change Its Relations With China?

I first visited Myanmar (formerly known as Burma) in February 2013, two months after then-U.S. President Barack Obama’s landmark visit to that country. One thing that has been inscribed in my fond memories of the visit is that many street vendors in Yangon (formerly Rangoon) were hawking T-shirts with Obama’s headshot and a caption above […]

Myanmar’s toxic legacy of large dams

The country’s first strategic environmental review provides a chance to demand more from investors and dam builders, but is still being seen as too little, and leading to fierce resistance by marginalised communities. In September spectacular drone footage revealed the beauty of the waterfalls, rapids, ancient temples and islets of the Nam Pang River, a […]

Myanmar Fishery Export Income Set to Double

​​ THOUGH MYANMAR’S fishery export income took a dive for three straight years until 2015, industry players hold high hopes to rebound, given the slight increase last year and the potential continuation of growth this fiscal year ending on March 31. In FY2011-12, Myanmar could generate US$705.9 million (Bt24.7 billion) from fishery exports, after dropping […]

The Wartime Supply Road That Became Myanmar’s Thriving Trade Route

YANGON — As trucks barrel down the well-paved road between Mandalay and the southwest of China, few of the men working on the construction sites lining the road probably realize that it was once a vital wartime supply route. As Myanmar’s overland tradewith China expands, the roadis now being revived as a bustling trade artery between the two countries. In Mandalay, […]

Chinese paper calls opposition to Myanmar dams ‘extreme’

Opposition to Chinese-invested hydropower schemes in Myanmar is being orchestrated by “extreme” groups in the country and has been extremely damaging to joint investment projects, an influential Chinese newspaper wrote on Monday. The suspension in 2011 of the $3.6-billion Myitsone megadam project by former president Thein Sein remains a sore point between the two countries. […]

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 […]