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ABN # 65 648 097 123
Background Brief: Myanmar: Lifting Sanctions Carlyle A. Thayer September 3, 2012
[client name deleted] Regarding Myanmar and its economic prospects we read your report in AFG Venture Group Dispatches (http://www.afgventuregroup.com/dispatches/afg-venture-groupnewsletter/myanmar-lifting-the-sanctions-is-more-difficult-than-imposing-sanctionscarlyle-a-thayer-emeritus-professor-the-university-of-new-south-wales-at-theaustralian-defence-force-academy-canberra/). We would like to ask you a question regarding U.S. economic sanctions. 1) As you mentioned, the U.S. has a particularly complex web of sanctions against Myanmar (five federal laws and four presidential decrees). When and in what conditions do you think the sanctions against Myanmar could be fully lifted (I suppose they are technically under ‘suspension’ now)? ANSWER: I do not think Congressional restrictions will be lifted until the next elections in Myanmar and only if the constitution is changed to end the role of military representation. These elections would have to be judged free and fair. Congress will also want to be fully satisfied that human rights, religious freedom and national reconciliation are proceeding satisfactorily. The presidential executive orders can be altered by the President but the Administration would want to see more progress on the issues mentioned above. Myanmar has plenty of incentives to continue reform. Indeed, Myanmar might surprise all of us and play a constructive role as ASEAN Chair to gain even more benefits from its "good behaviour."
Suggested citation: Carlyle A. Thayer, “Myanmar: Lifting Sanctions,” Thayer Consultancy Background Brief, September 3, 2012. Thayer Consultancy Background Briefs are archived and may be accessed at: http://www.scribd.com/carlthayer.