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A Conversation With US Ambassador Scot Marciel

On March 8, The Irrawaddy’s editorial team invited US Ambassador Scot Marciel to our office in Yangon to participate in a conversation on a range of issues, particularly the many challenges Myanmar is facing. The ambassador offered his frank views in response to questions from senior editors. Here are excerpts from the interview: The Irrawaddy: […]

Trade war will drive Chinese investment in Asean to US$500 billion by 2035, think tank says

Chinese investment in Asean countries is set to more than triple to US$500 billion by 2035, with the US-China trade war likely to provide a catalyst for the spike, according to a regional think tank. The claim was made in a report published on Thursday by the Asean+3 Macroeconomic Research Office (AMRO), a regional macroeconomic […]

Fast-Growing Coffee Sector Looks for Extra Shot of Support From Government

YANGON— Myanmar’s coffee market is growing robustly, with the country’s beans attracting increasing interest in international markets as well as locally, industry sources said. U Min Hlaing, secretary of the Myanmar Coffee Association, said demand for Myanmar coffee has surged in the past few years and it is now being exported to more than a […]

Davos 2018: China’s economic shift and implications for Myanmar

Myanmar will capture Chinese investment as Beijing prioritises poverty alleviation and development in Yunnan AS the fight against poverty takes centre stage in Beijing’s economic policy, Yunnan and Myanmar will remain a priority for Chinese investment, while China’s fast-growing middle-income population, especially those in the southwest, presents a crucial market for Myanmar’s growth-oriented businesses as well […]

Myanmar Says U.S. Sanctions Against General Based on ‘Unreliable Accusations’

(Reuters) – Myanmar “feels sad” over a U.S. decision to sanction a military general, a government spokesman said, after Washington linked the commander last week to abuses against the Rohingya Muslim minority. “This targeted sanction is based on unreliable accusations without evidence, as we have repeatedly said, so we feel sad for that,” Zaw Htay, […]

Moscow steps up business with Nay Pyi Taw

At a Russia-Myanmar Intergovernmental Commission on Trade and Economic Cooperation (RMIC) meeting in Moscow last month, Russian commission chair Minister Maksim Oreshkin and Minister for the Ministry of Planning and Finance, U Kyaw Win, signed an agreement to set up a Russia trade representative office in Yangon. The trade representative office should be launched by […]

IFC Approves Support for Controversial Tycoon’s Mandalay Cement Project

The World Bank’s private sector lending arm the International Finance Corporation (IFC) has given the go ahead to support a multi-million dollar plan to expand a cement factory in Mandalay Region, operated by the Shwe Taung Conglomerate. The firm’s chairman, Aik Htun, had been alleged by US authorities to have had ties to the drug […]

Myanmar has maintained military ties with North Korea, US officials claim

Myanmar’s military was believed in the past to have imported North Korean-made weapons and North Korean personnel also worked in Myanmar Myanmar’s military has maintained ties with North Korea, even though the civilian-led government denies any cooperation, and the Trump administration is pressing for a complete break-off of remaining links, current and former US officials […]

World Bank Arm Defends Mandalay Cement Factory Project Amid Civil Society Opposition

Following an open letter sent to the World Bank’s President Jim Kim by a coalition of community-based organizations opposing a proposed plan to support the expansion of a cement plant in Mandalay Region and the coal mine that fuels it, the International Finance Corporation (IFC) maintains that the project is worthwhile. The open letter was […]

South Korea in Myanmar: Missing the Train to Naypyitaw?

South Korea’s interest in Myanmar lies in its economic assets: cheaper labor costs, a sizable market of around 51 million people, and natural resource wealth. Yet Myanmar has unrealized potential to play a much greater strategic role for South Korea. South Korea’s economic presence in the country is wide-ranging and Seoul has emerged as an […]