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Posts Tagged ‘Myanmar News’

22nd June 2011

It recently came to this blogger’s attention that the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) has seen the launch of a dedicated television channel. To provide more insight upon these developments it may be best to quote directly from the website

Tonight saw the official launch of ASEAN TV which is a new channel that serves 10 member countries in the English language. It’s actually been around for nearly two years as a project by MCOT. However they have now joined with the Nation group who run Thailand’s first 24 hour news channel. This co-operation between MCOT and the Nation means we will now get another 24 hour English language news channel in Thailand.

This blogger encourages readers to use the hyperlinks noted above to read the full details of this recent announcement.

There are many positive benefits that could be accrued to the people of the various ASEAN jurisdictions as a result of the launching of a television channel dedicated to ASEAN affairs. As ASEAN becomes increasingly important in an economic context it stands to reason that those in the ASEAN region and around the globe will be seeking information regarding the various economies which comprise this important organization. Meanwhile, ASEAN seems to be becoming increasingly important geopolitically (along with the so-called BRICS nations) so a news channel dedicated to providing insight into the political events occurring in the ASEAN jurisdictions (Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, and Vietnam) would appear to be something of a necessity for those who wish to remain informed regarding current events therein.

In rather unrelated news (but likely pertinent for readers of this web log) it recently came to this blogger’s attention that the sovereign State of Michigan may see TSA-related legislation similar to that proposed in the sovereign State of Texas. In order to provide some insight into these developments it may be best to quote directly from the website of the Daily Tribune,

An Oakland County lawmaker is taking aim at the Transportation Security Administration and how its agents perform airport passenger security checks. State Rep. Tom McMillin, R-Rochester Hills, wants to make it a misdemeanor for any TSA employee to “conduct an intrusive, personal search on citizens without reasonable cause.” McMillin referenced a recent incident at Detroit Metropolitan Airport “where a 29-year-old special needs passenger was subject to an allegedly intrusive search.” “The federal government is not God,” McMillin said Friday. “It doesn’t get to decide what it can do to our citizens. This is one law that needs to be in place…”

The administration of this web log strongly encourages readers to click upon the hyperlinks noted above to read more on this story.

Readers may recall that a recent posting on this blog discussed the so-called Transportation Security Administration‘s (TSA) recent harassment of a mentally challenged man in Michigan. It would appear as though that story has caused concern among Michigan legislators. This concern would seem to have manifest itself in the form of possible legislation. That stated, as of the time of this writing, there has yet to be any actual passage of such legislation on the State level. Hopefully, the developments noted above will result in benefits for all concerned.

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20th June 2011

It recently came to this blogger’s attention that it appears Malaysia (a member nation of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, ASEAN) will not be hosting other ASEAN nations at the Langkawi International Dialogue (LID). To provide further insight it may be best to quote directly from an article written by M. Saraswathi and posted on the website

KUALA LUMPUR, June 19 (Bernama) — There are no plans to include Asean nations in the Langkawi International Dialogue (LID) as it will be too big to manage, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said today. Malaysia would maintain the present dialogue format between the African and Caribbean countries, he said. “No. We don’t want too many countries to be involved. We will maintain the present format of African and Caribbean countries,” he said when asked if Malaysia intends to include Asean countries in LID at a press conference here today. This year’s dialogue is being attended by African leaders such as Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe, Prime Minister Pakalitha Bethuel Mosisili of Lesotho, Swaziland Prime Minister Barnabas Sibusiso, Ugandan Vice-President Edward Sekandi and Kenyan Vice-President Stephen Kalonzo…

The administration of this web log strongly encourages readers to click upon the appropriate hyperlinks noted above to learn more from this insightful article.

In this blogger’s opinion, one of the positive aspects of the ASEAN community, for the membership, is a sort of general flexibility. It could be inferred from the quotation above that Malaysia has a strong trade relationship with certain countries in Africa and the Caribbean. Such relationships make the Malaysian economy rather unique compared to her other counterparts in the ASEAN community. This uniqueness would seem to create various levels of comparative advantage for the Malaysian economy. Concurrently, the other jurisdictions of ASEAN (Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam) are able to receive a kind of refractive benefit from Malaysia’s strong trade relations in Africa and the Caribbean since ASEAN nations are able to streamline their direct trading with Malaysia herself. How ASEAN will evolve in the future remains to be seen, but it is clear that ASEAN is quite unique amongst the various regional organizations around the globe. Hopefully, this uniqueness will result in tangible benefits for the citizenry of the various ASEAN countries and for ASEAN’s trading partners as well.

On a related note, China was in the news recently as it is being reported that China is expanding her foreign reserves into non-dollar denominated assets. To shed further light upon these developments it may be best to quote directly from an article written by Jamil Anderlini and Tracy Alloway and posted to the Financial Times website,

China began diversifying away from the US dollar in earnest in the first four months of this year, most likely by buying far more European government debt than US dollar assets, according to estimates from Standard Chartered Bank. China’s foreign exchange reserves expanded by around $200bn in the first four months of the year, with three-quarters of the new inflow invested abroad in non-US dollar assets, the bank estimated. “It certainly appears that China’s finally following through on its policy to diversify its foreign reserve holdings away from the US dollar,” said Stephen Green, the bank’s chief China economist.

This blogger asks readers to click upon the relevant hyperlinks above to find out further details. Frequent readers of this web log may recall that the United States and China are apparently cooperating with regard to ASEAN engagement, but this news came amidst announcements that China had divested rather sizable holdings in US Treasuries. As China continues to show further economic dominance on the global stage it will likely prove interesting to see how this nation invests her financial resources. Hopefully as China and ASEAN continue their economic growth it will accrue to the benefit of all concerned.

For information related to immigration from Asia please see: K1 Visa Thailand or Legal.

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22nd May 2011

Don’t Call It Burma

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It recently came to this blogger’s attention that officials within the government of Myanmar have asked representatives from the United States of America to discontinue calling the Union of Myanmar “Burma”. In order to provide more perspective it may be best to quote directly from a recent posting on

Yangon – A senior US diplomat who visited Myanmar last week was asked to stop calling the country Burma if Washington wishes to promote bilateral relations with the new government, media reports said Sunday. The suggestion was made in the course of talks between US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Joseph Yun and Myanmar Foreign Minister Wanna Maung Lwin on Wednesday, according to a transcript of the meeting made available to the Myanmar Times newspaper…

The administration of this web log strongly encourages readers to click on the hyperlinks noted above to learn more on this developing story.

Those who follow relations between the United States of America and the Union of Myanmar may be interested to note that Myanmar’s foreign Minister recently noted the need for “Goodwill” between the two nations. To quote directly from a story recently published on the official website of The Straits Times,

YANGON – MYANMAR has told the United States it will not accept preconditions to improve relations, saying sanctions imposed by Washington remain the biggest obstacle to better ties, a report said on Sunday. ‘We would like to urge the US to build mutual trust in the first place and only then will we be able to frankly discuss ways of promoting the relationship between the two countries,’ Foreign Minister Wunna Maung Lwin was quoted as saying by the weekly Myanmar Times. The minister was speaking on Wednesday to Joseph Yun, deputy US assistant secretary of state for East Asia and Pacific Affairs, in the highest-level meeting between the two nations since the advent of a nominally civilian government…

Again, the administration of this web log asks readers to click upon the hyperlinks above to learn more about this developing story.

It is this blogger’s personal opinion that relations between the United States of America and the Union of Myanmar are likely to improve in the future, but as meetings have only recently been initiated it seems likely that there may be some diplomatic “hiccups” in the early phases. It should be noted that the mere fact that these two nations are having these discussions is a positive development as US-Myanmar relations have been strained in recent decades. Meanwhile, the Union of Myanmar remains a member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), an organization which seems to be of increasing importance in economic matters pertaining to Southeast Asia.

How the discussions between Myanmar and the United States will ultimately unfold remains to be seen, but for now it is at least nice to see both sides talking.

For related information please see: US Visa Myanmar.

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24th January 2011

It recently came to this blogger’s attention, via the print media in Bangkok, Thailand; that the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), along with other organizations and individuals, are calling for an end to the economic sanctions being imposed against the Union of Myanmar (sometimes interchangeably referred to as Burma). While researching this issue online this blogger came upon the following quotation from

An informal meeting of the Foreign Ministers of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) has called for the lifting of economic sanctions against the military regime of Myanmar.

The meeting, held on the Indonesian island of Lombok, made the call citing “significant” political progress made in the south-east Asian country.

Indonesian Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa, whose country holds the rotating chair of the ten-nation organization, told reporters: “We believe that the recent development needs to be responded by the international community, especially in order to ensure that the economic development in Myanmar can take place.”

He says ASEAN Ministers feel that the recent long-awaited Myanmar elections, which he described as “conducive and transparent, and the release of Opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi warranted a positive international response.

The lifting of the sanctions against Myanmar still remains to be seen, but in the wake of the announcement from ASEAN the Straits Times official website is reporting that authorities in Myanmar are taking steps toward creating a stock exchange in Myanmar. To quote directly from the Straits Times website

BANGKOK – MYANMAR is in talks with South Korea’s bourse operator about opening a stock market, the latest in a series of steps by its military rulers aimed at drawing much-needed foreign capital to the country.

Korea Exchange is already involved in running the newly opened Laos Securities Exchange and is setting up a long-delayed stock market in Cambodia, which is due to open in July. Both are joint ventures with the respective governments.

In previous postings on this blog, the administration has discussed the unveiling of a Stock Exchange in Laos and the announcement that a Cambodian Securities Exchange is set to be opened in mid-2011. In the case of Myanmar, it would appear as though any plans for the eventual creation of a Myanmar securities exchange are still tentative as can be gathered from a further quote in the Straits Times posting:

A spokesman for Korea Exchange in Seoul said representatives had visited Myanmar twice. ‘But nothing has been decided,’ the official said.

Although the opening of a Myanmar Securities Exchange is not a foregone conclusion, there are many who can cite the myriad economic benefits that would accrue as a result of such a step. Furthermore, there are those who would argue that creation of economic opportunities in Myanmar would be beneficial for all Citizens of Myanmar based upon a sort of “rising tide raises all ships” logic. To quote further from the Straits Times:

Myanmar is rich in natural resources but its development has been held back by five decades of economic mismanagement under military dictators and by Western sanctions.

But reforms are under way. The authorities have privatised hundreds of state assets in the past year and are seeking to expand the banking, telecommunications, shipping and agricultural sectors. — REUTERS

Myanmar is truly a cornucopia of natural resources and economic opportunity, but at the time of this writing many nations, including the United States of America, have sanctions against this Southeast Asian nation which prohibit certain forms of commercial activity. There are some who argue that such sanctions actually exacerbate the plight of impoverished Myanmar Citizens. Such an argument generally postulates that easing of foreign trade restrictions, and the economic benefits which would likely arise from such a state of affairs, would accrue to the benefit of many of the market actors in Myanmar, many of whom live in poverty. Under such a theory, economic benefits would not necessarily exclusively accrue to the upper echelon of Myanmar as the less affluent would likely benefit, albeit indirectly, from the infusion of foreign capital, trade goods, intellectual property, and the further economic activity arising therefrom.

Even though a securities exchange in Myanmar may be merely in the discussion phase and is a long way from being created, those interested in doing business in Myanmar, or any other country in Southeast Asia, should take note of the information above as there are many who would argue that Myanmar will likely play a critical role in regional and global economics as well as trade.

For related information please see: US Company Registration, US Visa Myanmar, or Laos Securities Exchange.

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