Apprehensive of civil unrest by a disgruntled public following the increase in the prices of petrol by the government, the military junta has increased security presence in many major cities in Burma. The heightened security perception has led to keeping security forces on high alert. This was revealed by a source close to the Army in Akyab.

Troops are being ordered to stay on high alert in major towns in Arakan, to prevent any untoward incident following the hike in petrol prices.The government raised the official price of petrol from 180 kyats to 1500 kyats per gallon (about $1.20 US). As a result, transportation costs have jumped three times. Prices of essential commodities in Burma are expected to skyrocket soon.

A Maung Daw resident commenting on the rise of petrol prices said, “It is currently 3500 kyat per gallon in the black market. With the official price rise, it is going to touch 5000 kyats soon. We are worried that with the increase in the price of petrol, price of rice will go up.

Price of rice has just come down from a record high, but it might go up breaking the record again.”In Maung Daw, a 50-kilo rice bag was priced between 20,000 kyats and 30,000 kyats depending on its quality, but the price recently dropped to between 15,000 kyats and 20,000 kyats.