Reposted from Bloomberg
By James Rowley & Daniel Ten Kate
U.S. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, the congressional sponsor of economic sanctions against Myanmar, said he won’t seek their extension in light of the former military regime’s shift toward democracy.
“I will not be making an effort to renew those sanctions this year, based upon consultations with the State Department,” McConnell, a Kentucky Republican, told reporters at the Capitol yesterday after meeting Myanmar President Thein Sein. “We think enough progress has been made in Burma where implementation of the sanctions this year is actually not a good idea.”
Thein Sein’s moves to allow more political freedom and open Myanmar’s economy following about five decades of military rule have attracted companies including Ford Motor Co. (F), Coca-Cola Co. and Visa Inc. He sought the end of U.S. sanctions in a meeting this week with President Barack Obama, a month after the European Union lifted punitive measures. More…
Reposted from Financial Times
By Geoff Dyer and Richard McGregor
When Thein Sein arrives in Washington on Monday as the first Myanmar president for almost half a century to visit the US capital, he may discover that the warm welcome also comes with a price tag.
Mr Thein Sein will meet President Barack Obama at the White House and congressional leaders on Capitol Hill, sign a number of trade agreements and be feted at a dinner at the US Chamber of Commerce.
The programme reflects Washington’s support for Myanmar’s democratic reforms after years of self-imposed isolation, as well as the US desire to make sure it can compete in the region with its geostrategic rival, China.
But Mr Thein Sein’s hosts will be looking beyond the red carpet to how Myanmar is handling the wave of competing foreign investment claims, with one early deal in particular – a contract for Yangon’s airport – in the US spotlight. More…
US President Obama in Burma
Reposted from Business Standard
Myanmar’s President Thein Sein will embark on a historic visit to America on May 20 as US President Barack Obama continues to encourage reforms in that nation while it ushers in democratic changes.
“The President looks forward to discussing with President Thein Sein the many remaining challenges to efforts to develop democracy, address communal and ethnic tensions, and bring economic opportunity to the people of his country, and to exploring how the US can help,” White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said.
Thein Sein’s visit underscores Obama’s commitment to supporting and assisting those governments that make the important decision to embrace reform, and highlights the dedication of the US to helping the Burmese people realise the full potential of their extraordinary country, Carney said in a statement. More…
Reposted from The Wall Street Journal
By YOREE KOH
Japanese banks considering to offer a $900 million bridge loan for Myanmar
TOKYO—When the world’s top economic policy makers converge in Tokyo later this week, a prominent agenda item alongside the euro crisis and global slowdown will be debt relief for rapidly reforming Myanmar. More…
Reposted from IPS News
By Larry Jagan
President Thein Sein of Myanmar reshuffles cabinet
YANGON, Sep 1 2012 (IPS) – After months of speculation and rumours, President Thein Sein of Myanmar (earlier Burma) has created a “super” cabinet to try to salvage his besieged administration – riven with divisions and inertia. More…
Reposted from International Crisis Group
Burmese girl in Yangon, Maynmar
Asia Report N°231 27 Jul 2012
Click here for the full report
Myanmar has embarked on an ambitious program of sweeping reforms to end its isolation and integrate its economy with the global system. More…
Reposted from The White House Press Secretary
Today, the United States is easing restrictions to allow U.S. companies to responsibly do business in Burma. President Thein Sein, Aung San Suu Kyi and the people of Burma continue to make significant progress along the path to democracy, and the government has continued to make important economic and political reforms. Easing sanctions is a strong signal of our support for reform, and will provide immediate incentives for reformers and significant benefits to the people of Burma. More…
Reposted from the Global Times
The Myanmar government, headed by President U Thein Sein, has proposed a draft five-year national development plan (2011-12 to 2015-16) which will be submitted to the next parliament session due to start on July 4 for approval.
Two annual national plans for fiscal year 2011-12 and 2012-13 have been approved earlier by the parliament, in which some sectors of the ministries have been reduced and the budgets for some sectors increased. More…