Welcome to Mogok, Myanmar’s mysterious mining mecca

High in the hills of northeastern Myanmar, past a few sleepy army checkpoints on a stretch of road where mobile phones lose their signal, an ageing signpost set against a mountainous landscape reads: “WELCOME TO RUBY LAND”. This is the entrance to a little-known and seldom-visited town called Mogok, which is said to be the […]

Why the US Election Matters for Myanmar

The next president will determine whether Obama’s interest in Myanmar was aberration or precedent. In January, U.S. President Barack Obama will leave office and presumably begin work on his highly anticipated memoir. As Obama reflects over the past eight years, he will most certainly meditate on his engagement with Myanmar, and how it became such […]

US Gems Association Eyes Trade Ties as Sanctions End

The American Gem Trade Association (AGTA) arrived in Myanmar for the first time this week to assess the gems sector and build trade relationships ahead of an anticipated end to the US sanctions regime, which would allow the legal import of Myanmar rubies and jade. The association’s president, Jeffrey Bilgore, said the mission had been […]

MGMA backs garment industry to boom when US sanctions are lifted

Myanmar’s leading garment industry body has been buoyed by the lifting of sanctions it hopes will see a return to the glory days for the sector, when in the early 2000s a majority of country’s garments were shipped to the US. Speaking at a manufacturing trade fair in Yangon yesterday, U Myint Soe, chair of […]

Economic sanctions can no longer power Myanmar’s democratic transition, US ambassador says

US Ambassador to Myanmar Scot Marciel yesterday defended the decision to purge the sanctions list, referring to the embargoes as no longer politically expedient and a constraint on trade between the two countries. “The cost of maintaining sanctions is greater than that of easing the sanctions,” he said, adding that the decision had been thoroughly […]

New US trade preferences highlight challenges for Myanmar exporters

Myanmar’s business sector has welcomed US plans to lift almost all remaining sanctions against the country and reinstitute special trade preferences, but some industries could find it hard to take advantage of the new environment. US President Barack Obama announced this week that he intends to lift the state of emergency the US declared against Myanmar in […]

Aung San Suu Kyi calls for investment after Obama pledges Myanmar sanctions relief

WASHINGTON: Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi urged businesses to invest in the Southeast Asian country on Thursday (Sep 15) as a way to advance its democratic transition, a day after US President Barack Obama pledged to lift long-standing sanctions on the country. Aung San Suu Kyi, speaking in Washington, said that economic development spurred […]

US restores GSP benefits to Myanmar

US president Barack Obama has signed a proclamation reinstating Myanmar’s (formerly Burma) eligibility for benefits under the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) programme as of November 13, 2016. Since Myanmar is a least developed country (LDC), it will be able to export approximately 5,000 products to the US duty-free under this programme. The trade preference benefits were restored after […]

US and Myanmar agree to game-changing initiatives

In addition to the lifting of US sanctions on Myanmar that came as a result of a historic meeting at The White House yesterday between US President Barack Obama and State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, there will be several other initiatives that were agreed upon in Washington, including global health security and improved […]

US approves $21m assistance to Myanmar

YANGON – The United States will provide an additional US$21 million (Bt730 million) in assistance to Myanmar, to promote economic growth and capacity building for long-term development in the country. The initiative will support the government’s goal of tripling exports in five years; strengthen the ability of the government and the legal system to provide […]