International


The first Myanmar businessman to be removed from a U.S. blacklist since the country emerged from military rule said on Thursday that the United States should delist more people so they can partner with American companies to develop the economy.
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The trial of two Burmese migrants accused of murdering a pair of British tourists is set to resume on 30 April on the island of Koh Samui in southern Thailand.
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A report from an influential international think-tank has raised concerns about Burma’s ability to hold credible elections late this year, while noting that developments over the last five years offer voters a chance at the most legitimate poll in a quarter century.
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Myanmar officials and the business community yesterday expressed hope that the lifting of US sanctions against prominent industrialist U Win Aung last week would open the door to an influx of US investment and the removal from Washington’s blacklist of other tycoons linked to the former military regime.
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An export strategy aimed at integrating Myanmar more broadly into the world economy has been launched by the government with the support of an international trade organisation and the German government.
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Parliament Speaker Thura U Shwe Mann will depart for the United States today on a visit that aims to further both political and economic ties at a crucial time for bilateral relations.
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When the United States removed one of Burma’s most prominent businessmen, Win Aung, from the Specially Designated Nationals (SDN) list last week, other blacklisted tycoons surely sent silent prayers that they would be next in line for removal from the list that bars them from business with their American counterparts. (more…)

Australian mining firm Eumeralla Resources and its local partner Myanmar Energy Resources Group (MERG) received approval last year from state authorities to explore a 400km square area in Karenni State. The application, made through Eumeralla’s local Burmese subsidiary Mawsaki Mining Co. which is 70 percent owned by the parent company, still has to be approved by relevant central government authorities but has already raised concerns from local groups worried about the impact that the firm’s activities could have on the environment and the local community. (more…)

Amnesty International has called for the immediate release of activist U Thein Aung Myint has been jailed for a further six months for participating in a peaceful protest in Myanmar, according to a press release on April 27. (more…)

Criminal groups benefit US$2 billion annually in Asia through people smuggling leading to serious human rights abuses and deaths, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) warned on the April 28. (more…)

Sweden recognises that the best solution of Rohingya refugees lies with the Myanmar government, a solution in which they create conditions for them to live “peacefully” in their own country, reports bdnews24.com on April 27.
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The United States on Monday voiced alarm over rare clashes between the Myanmar military and insurgents in Rakhine state believed to have caused hundreds of civilians to flee their homes.
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The European Union on Monday committed more than 660,000 Euros toward Yangon redevelopment with an Italian organization offering to assist the city in the upgrades.
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U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Friday urged Myanmar to address the citizenship status of Rohingya Muslims in the country’s western Rakhine state ahead of a general election scheduled to be held later this year.
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Burma’s business community roundly welcomed the US Treasury Department’s announcement on Thursday that sanctions had been lifted against business mogul Win Aung, predicting that the delisting could signal a tide of redemption for a long list of so-called cronies ostracized by the Western superpower.
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The World Bank on Thursday announced a new funding package for Burma, in it’s first full framework for the country since 1984.
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This week’s arrival of the first three foreign banks to be allowed to open branches in Myanmar has already signalled a possible shake-up of the banking sector, with Japan’s Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation expressing interest yesterday in eventually acquiring a minority stake in Kanbawza (KBZ), Myanmar’s largest lender.
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Aung San Suu Kyi has joined a chorus of local critics to pan the government’s decision to retain Podesta Group in an effort to overhaul its image, as a senior member of President Thein Sein’s retinue admitted that the lobbying firm has been charged with ending United States sanctions against Burma.
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London-based rights group Amnesty International has called on British authorities to investigate British-Australian mining giant Rio Tinto for “a possible breach of EU economic sanctions on Burma” over the role it played in a controversial sale of the Burmese assets of a Canadian firm Ivanhoe Mines, a sale that according to a leaked US State Department cable may have involved internationally blacklisted billionaire Tay Za as a middle man.
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The first foreign bank to operate in Burma for decades officially opened the doors of its Rangoon branch on Wednesday, the latest government attempt to attract more foreign investment to the emergent nation.
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