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ISSUE 698 | OCTOBER 7 - 13, 2013

‘We begged them not to kill us’
MUSLIM and Buddhist residents have lived side-by-side in Thandwe’s Thabuchai village for generations. But that peace was shattered on October 2 when Buddhist mobs stormed the town, inflicting shocking damage on the normally quiet community. Among the dead was Daw Aye Kyi, a disabled 95-yearold woman who was brutally stabbed in her own home. Her daughter, Daw Zaw Lay Kha, broke down in tears as she recounted how the family was forced to abandon Daw Aye Kyi in their escape from the mob. “About 40 Rakhine people approached our house. At first they threw stones. We tried to save our mother, who is a paraplegic and always in bed. “Three people ran at us … We begged them not to kill us but they came into our house. We abandoned our mother. We heard only a brief shout from her, in the last second as we were leaving,” she said. Daw Zaw Lay Kha and her daughter, Daw Mi Mi Khaing, returned to their home a few hours after the violence. Daw Aye Kyi’s body was covered in stab wounds. “I saw five or six wounds – deep cuts – on her body.” MORE - NEWS 3

More Reports
P 3, 4, 6, 8 - 9

Brutal mob riot leaves 5 dead
Muslims targeted by violence have accused members of a Rakhine political party of instigating riots in Thandwe that left five people dead, and said police failed to protect them as a Buddhist mob descended on their village. NEWS 3


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THE INSIDER: The local lowdown & best of the web
Threat of attacks from the north Air squadrons across the border in China’s northwestern Shaanxi province have claimed 21 lives so far this year, in an unprecedented offensive experts are attributing to favourable, warmer weather conditions. The killer wasps, thought to be Vespa mandarinia or “Asian giant hornets”, can grow to 2.2 inches in length and have prompted Chinese regional authorities to establish a 24-hour emergency response team. Able to travel at speeds of up to 25 miles per hour and armed with a sting that can bring about acute renal failure, a swarm of the wasps descended on a school in Guanxi province in September. The attack saw 30 people injured, including 23 primary school children between the ages of six and eight. The body of a victim whose life was claimed in a separate incident presented 200 individual stings, doctors said. “The more you run, the more they want to chase you,” a victim whose kidneys were ravaged by the venom told CNN. Last summer, some Asian giant hornets were spotted in Illinois. Wasp season in China runs from May to November. Mysterious wild monkey captured in Nay Pyi Taw The state-run New Light of Myanmar reported a possibly exciting development in the ecological taxonomy of central Myanmar, in their piece entitled “Rare monkey caught in Zabuthiri Township”. A monkey was successfully caught by employees of the township agriculture department and farmers at the 500-acre educative farm in Nyaunggyibinsu Village in Nay Pyi Taw Council area. The creature, described as “three feet long gray monkey has white colour at its face”, baffled experts from the agriculture department. “We saw domestic monkey species at Yangon Zoological Gardens and Nay Pyi Taw Safari Park. But I have never seen this monkey. Indeed, it is too wild,”, the New Light quoted a worker as saying. Arrangements are reportedly being made to hand the monkey over “to the department concerned”. Russia not ready to do battle in space, Moscow officials say It has been revealed that Russia’s Aerospace Defence troops are not equipped for intergalactic battle just yet, following a media conference at the Titov Main Test and Space Systems Control Centre near Moscow, Russia’s main satellite control centre. A journalist posed the question of extraterrestrial security and received a surprising answer from the centre’s deputy chief Sergey Berezhnoy. “So far we are not capable of that. We are unfortunately not ready to fight extraterrestrial civilisations,” RT Online quoted him as saying. “Our centre was not tasked with it. There are too many problems on earth and near it,” he added. Goodbye, Silk Road Online drug marketplace Silk Road has been taken down by the FBI, with its 29-year-old operator Ross William Ulbricht set to face charges of drug trafficking conspiracy, computer-related fraud and conspiracy to launder money. Allegations have also emerged of Ulbricht, web alias “Dread Pirate Roberts”, attempting to use the site to carry out two hits – one of which was a setup by undercover operatives. Details on the second assassination order are murky, and is reportedly tied to an extortion attempt where a Silk Road user threatened to reveal private information of those on the site. The Silk Road was accessible only on the “deep web”, using an encryption service such as the TOR network. The fallibility of such services, intended to provide users with anonymity online, has come under fire in light of the busts. The Silk Road shutdown comes just weeks after its direct competitor Atlantis went offline.

online editor Kayleigh Long |

When Myanmar was Burma...
Archival material provided by Pansodan Gallery

Style Statement
Chit Snow Oo for NOW! magazine. Photo: Pyay Han (Colormax)

An excerpt from a 1970s edition of socialist propaganda journal Forward

News 3
CONTINUED FROM NEWS 1 It was in the afternoon and more Rakhine were coming up again to burn more homes. We left our mother’s body. All we know is that it was taken to the hospital in the evening by the authorities. We still haven’t been back to our house yet.” The trauma of being targeted by the deadly mob has already become clear. “I can’t sleep and I can’t eat. I can’t be at peace in my mind when I think about how they killed a sick woman who was almost 100 years old,” Daw Zaw Lay Kha said. The violence, Muslims said, was far from spontaneous. “Only Muslim houses were burned. It was very easy to see which house was Muslim because Buddhists hung their religious flags in front of their homes a few days before it happened,” said Daw Aye Kyi’s granddaughter, Daw Mi Mi Khaing. Unable to move quickly, the elderly represented easy prey for attackers. U Adu Samat, 89, was also among the dead. “He lived together with his youngest son,” said U Myo Win, another of his sons. “When it happened, my father was alone at home. He tried to escape but he couldn’t run like everyone else because of his age and poor health. He was caught and killed. We found his body in the evening.” Father-of-three U Myint Lwin, 48, was the youngest victim of the mob. “He [U Myint Lwin] urged us to run away when the outbreak started,” said his wife, Daw Tin Tin Lay, 48. “As we were fleeing, he hurried back on his own to set our cattle free. We didn’t see his body. Someone else found it and told us [he] had been killed as he was leaving the house.” The family home is now little more than a pile of ashes and the tense situation makes it dangerous to go near their farmland. “We found nothing left. Everything was burned. We haven’t found our cattle yet. Now we are staying in our relatives’ house in another part of the village,” Daw Tin Tin Lay said. “Our farms are in the other side of our village, close to a Rakhine village. My eldest son just passed the matriculation exam this year and our younger two daughters are still at school. I don’t know what do.” Another Muslim farmer, U Adu Miyar, was also killed in Thabuchai violence. “We were having lunch at that time,” said his daughter, Ma Yin May Than, 24. “Our father urged all of us to run away. He was alone and they stabbed him with a sharp pole.”

Thandwe residents struggle to comprehend shattered peace
AUNG SHIN Tatmadaw soldiers deploy in Thandwe township’s Shwe Hlay village on October 2. Photo: Kaung Htet

THE tranquil beaches for which Thandwe is famed were as pristine as ever last week, the waves continuing to lap the golden sand. But just miles inland the atmosphere was anything but peaceful. The township has become the latest setting for brutal violence between Buddhists and Muslims. A September 28 quarrel sent Buddhist mobs on a rampage through the town and nearby villages, such as Pauktak, Shwe Hlay and Thabuchai, where they torched 90 homes and killed five people – including a 95-year-old woman and an 89-year-old man – leaving another four wounded. A Mosque and an Islamic school were among the buildings destroyed. The violence was mostly under control by the time President U Thein Sein flew in on October 2, on the last day of his first official visit to the state as Myanmar’s leader. But in a final warning shot, Rakhine Buddhists torched the house of a Muslim in Thandwe as the president rested just 5 kilometres (3 miles) away at Ngapali. Government officials – including President U Thein Sein – were quick to blame “outsiders” for the rapid escalation in violence.

‘[The police] fired above us, stopping us from defending ourselves. Then they let Rakhine people burn our homes.’
U Nay Win Thabuchai village resident

In a speech at Annawa Hall in Thandwe on October 3, the president noted the violence broke out just prior to his visit and said he was “suspicious of the motives” of those who turned a “trivial argument and ordinary crime into racial and religious clashes”. “External motives instigated violence and conflicts. According to the evidence in hand, rioters who set fire to the villages are outsiders,” he said. “Participation of all is needed to expose and arrest those who got involved in the incident and those instigating the conflict behind the scene.

Only then can [the] root cause of the problem be addressed ... Action will be taken in accord with the law, without discrimination on the grounds of race and religion.” Six people have been arrested so far, including the head of the Rakhine Nationalities Development Party (RNDP) office in Thandwe township. “Thandwe is normally always such a quiet place,” Rakhine State Chief Minister U Hla Maung Tin told The Myanmar Times in Thabuchai village on October 3. “I think the outbreak occurred because of outside stimulation. We have to find out whether political parties were deliberately involved.” But Muslims in Thabuchai, where five people were killed on October 2, accused some local police of being complicit in the violence. “We were afraid not only of Rakhine people but also the police. They fired above us, stopping us from defending ourselves. Then they let Rakhine people burn our houses,” said U Nay Win, 53. They accused political parties of inciting the violence. “Parties are using religious and ethnic ideology as a stepping stone on their political journey. [The parties] have been active … for the past few months there have been new religious and ethnic [Rakhine] movements developing in Thandwe,” said schoolteacher U Myo Win, whose 89-year-old father was killed on October 2. The violence in Thabuchai left 180 people homeless, including 42 Muslim households whose homes were

destroyed, and 11 Rakhine families who fled fearing reprisals. High-ranking officials from the regional government and Ministry of Defense visited Thabuchai village on October 3 and warned that residents could face legal action. But they rejected any suggestion that police had been complicit in the violence. “There are no members of our police force who would fail to do their duty in that way,” Police Lieutenant Colonel Kyaw Tint, the head of Thandwe police, said in response to the accusations. “They are just accusations. If any police official is found to be involved in the violence, they will be punished.” The six arrested people were taken to the local court on October 3. Police have refused to release details of the charges and stopped journalists from taking photos. The detainees are being held at Thandwe prison. A police colonel based in Thandwe told The Myanmar Times on October 4 that the investigation into the violence is

being handled by a special unit – he described it as a “secret mission – from the regional police force. There are indications, however, that the unrest may be far from over. Following the court hearing, Democratic Voice of Burma quoted a spokesperson from the RNDP office in Thandwe as saying that it would “respond seriously” if the six arrested people are not released within 24 hours. Media reports quoted the party’s chairman, U Aye Maung, calling on the government to release details of the charges against the six people and questioning whether the government had broken the law in suppressing those details. The situation in Thandwe was quiet but tense as The Myanmar Times went to press. “[The charges] are a sore point for Rakhine people. The authorities didn’t charge Muslims for insulting our religion and ethnicity,” said one Buddhist Rakhine resident from Thandwe, before warning, “This issue cannot stop here – it will go on.”

4 News


Ineffective security facilitating Rakhine violence: Crisis Group
BRIDGET DI CERTO AN ineffective police force and extremist rhetoric are fuelling violent religious tension across Myanmar, the International Crisis Group said in a report last week. Issued on October 1 to coincide with President U Thein Sein’s first visit to Rakhine State since violence between Rohingya Muslims and Rakhine Buddhists swept the state 16 months ago, the report blames the deadly clashes on the failure of political and social leaders to counter extremist views. The consequences for the country’s reform process could be dire, it warns. “At a moment of historic reform and opening, Myanmar cannot afford to become hostage to intolerance and bigotry,” the report said. The Brussels-based group highlighted the regional and international implications of religious violence and continued instability in Rakhine State. Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand are the major destinations for Muslim asylum seekers fleeing persecution in Myanmar. The benefits of ASEAN chairmanship in 2014 and strong interest from prospective foreign investors – both important aspects of Myanmar’s opening up – could dry up if social instability continues, the ICG said in the report. “Political, religious and community leaders must condemn [extremist] language, make clear that it has no place in a modern Myanmar, and appropriate administrative and legal action should be taken against those who incite hatred and violence,” it said. “Beyond improved riot-control training and equipment for police, broader reform of the police service is necessary so that it can be more effective and trusted, particularly at the community level, including officers from ethnic and religious minorities.” Speaking to The Myanmar Times by phone from Sittwe, Rohingya Muslim U Aung Win, 58, said the situation for Muslims in Rakhine State continues to deteriorate.


Reforms hinge on treatment of minorities
Violence against Muslims in Myanmar must stop if the country’s remarkable transition is to be a success
JIM DELLA-GIACOMA SINCE the destruction and killing in Meiktila in March, inter-communal violence has sporadically continued, including last week in Thandwe township where at least five people were killed and more than 50 houses destroyed. While authorities seem to have responded more quickly than before to the more recent incidents, these deadly attacks will continue without an improved response from the government and the communities in which they occur. They pose a threat to Myanmar’s nascent democracy and will not go away until everyone recognises the problem and agrees on solutions. Without a more effective government response and a change in societal attitudes there remains the risk that violence could continue to spread. If it does, the impact on Myanmar’s transition, its people and its economy could be grave. Outside its borders, the country’s standing in the world could diminish just as it is emerging from isolation – and as the people of many nations visit Myanmar, many for the first time. The inter-religious violence that started in northern Rakhine State in June last year spread to other parts of the country – as many had feared it might – because the authorities did not act firmly and transparently against the perpetrators. On his visit to the region last week, President U Thein Sein should have left behind a clear message to local officials: that bias, intolerance, and complicity in violence are not acceptable in the new Myanmar. The police response in Meiktila, the largest incident outside of Rakhine State, was also inadequate. There, local security officials were unable to restrain a community angered over not only a dispute at a neighbourhood shop but also the brutal killing of a monk. With trust in law enforcement low, citizens enacted their own retribution, with fatal and potentially long-lasting consequences. Authorities were unprepared and slow to react in this case for a number of reasons. But one contributing factor was they were chastened by the justified criticism of police overreaction at the Letpadaung mine a few months earlier. In Meiktila, by contrast, poorly trained and badly equipped officers were paralysed when a real threat to peace and stability arose in Mandalay Region. They failed to uphold the law, protect all citizens and stop perpetrators of violence regardless of their ethnicity or religion. Rather than use legal force to restrain such lawlessness, they used almost no force and exercised little authority, with deadly results. The failure of the police happened at many levels but fixing this inadequate response starts at the top. Meiktila was a wake-up call for all the government and attitudes have begun to change – but clearly not fast enough, as the violence in Thandwe shows. The president has announced a “zero tolerance” approach to what he called “senseless, irrational behaviour”. This needs to be followed up with clear orders down the hierarchy that prioritise the protection of all people in Myanmar without the excessive use of deadly force. In some recent incidents in Mandalay and Sagaing, the message seems to have been received. More still needs to be done and improving police capacity with better training and equipment is one important element. Outside expertise and assistance can accelerate the necessary changes. But the answer to resolving this difficult issue can also be found in each and every town in Myanmar. This country’s Muslim community is diverse and found in all cities, most towns and many villages. Myanmar’s Muslims have long been intimately entwined with the country’s commercial life. As the people of Meiktila found, there is a high and lingering financial cost to violence when part of the commercial district of a town is destroyed. Attacking the Muslim community left Meiktila’s markets depleted, kept visitors away and cut access to the informal financial system. Rising Burman-Buddhist nationalism and the growing influence of the monk-led “969” movement, which preaches intolerance and urges a boycott of Muslim businesses, is a dangerous combination of populism wrapped in religious respectability. The considerable frustration and anger built up during the country’s years of authoritarian rule needs to be directed away from a negative campaign focused on one of the country’s minorities and channelled toward a positive vision of a democratic, tolerant and prosperous country. Myanmar needs to delegitimise hate speech masquerading as economic nationalism. Such language is anti-democratic, encourages violence, causes instability and undermines much-needed economic development. A society that is open, multi-ethnic and multi-religious will be one that makes the most of its limited human resources rather than encouraging the flight of people with skills, languages, capital and entrepreneurial flair. More than any other issue, the treatment of Myanmar’s Muslim population is being watched closely in Southeast Asia and the rest of the world as the country will soon host the Southeast Asian Games and then chair ASEAN. The global spotlight will be focused not just on Myanmar’s athletes, officials and diplomats but also on the stillevolving system of government and emerging political culture. The treatment of minorities is the yardstick by which the country’s democracy will be measured. The openness that has been welcomed since the creation of the civilian-led government in March 2011 is now exposing Myanmar to new levels of international scrutiny, as well as greater expectations in terms of adhering to international norms and standards for democracy, policing, human rights and rule of law. As the athletes, officials, journalists and tourists book their tickets to visit Myanmar, an unprecedented number of foreigners will become aware of this country. Will the picture they form be positive or negative? Hundreds of thousands of people will be seeing for themselves how this country acts. Millions more will be paying attention as they watch on television. At this time, the leadership needs to be clear and the police firm without being repressive. Political figures and religious leaders should think carefully about what they say. Single words and short sentences, as well as actions and even inaction, are being scrutinised. Even those who don’t speak out and stay silent will be noticed. If Myanmar gets this wrong then everybody will lose out: A violent, unstable, and bigoted country is a place that no one wants to visit or invest in. If Myanmar gets it right then it will reap the rewards, not just in terms of medals, accolades, tourists and investment but with peace and stability within its borders.
Jim Della-Giacoma is the Asia Program Director of the International Crisis Group ( Its report, The Dark Side of Transition: Violence against Muslims in Myanmar, was published on October 1.

Soldiers deploy in a village outside Thandwe on October 2. Photo: Kaung Htet

“I lost two of my brothers-in-law but no criminal has been arrested,” U Aung Win said. “There are no investigations. I have heard nothing about any [person being] arrested for [the deaths] of my brothers-in-law. “Police, they just stand and stare when these things happen.” The father-of-three said restrictions on freedom of movement have separated him from his children and his own father.

‘Police, they just stand and stare when these things happen.’
U Aung Win Muslim resident of Sittwe

The recent outbreak of violence in Thandwe, an area of Rakhine State with few Rohingya, shows the conflict has made all Muslims in the state a potential target for Buddhist extremists. U Nyi Nyi, a Kaman Muslim, told

The Myanmar Times he now lives in fear for his life. “Many Kaman [Muslims] are now in hiding in the forest. There are not even enough security forces for us to collect the dead,” U Nyi Nyi said from Kaung Kin Thitsar village in Thandwe township. While there have been widespread allegations of security forces not properly protecting Muslims, U Nyi Nyi said he had not personally witnessed any bias from the police. He said, however, that the security forces were too thinly spread to provide proper protection. Rakhine government spokesperson U Win Myaing defended the actions of the state’s security forces, saying that wild mobs overwhelmed police stations and police officers on the streets. “This is because of democracy that people are acting like this. They can demonstrate and now people think they can do as they wish,” U Win Myaing said, adding that inflammatory media reporting also played a part in stirring up extremism. “The Myanmar media reported that the Organisation of Islamic [Cooperation] was coming to Rakhine, and then the [people] make trouble.”

6 News


‘We will not ignore violence,’ US warns

UNITED States ambassador to Myanmar Derek Mitchell has warned that the international community “will not ignore” the plight of Muslims affected by communal violence in Myanmar, which he said threatens the country’s economic development and reform efforts. Mr Mitchell told The Myanmar Times in Yangon on October 2 that the unrest is causing instability and damage to the country’s reputation that could deter foreign firms from entering and investing in Myanmar. “I think [the violence] is holding the country back as it is harming the

country’s reputation. It is affecting the development of the country and affecting businesses,” he said. He emphasised that the international community will not turn a blind eye to the violence directed at Muslims and called for greater accountability for those responsible. About 250 people have been killed and more than 140,000 left homeless since the first oubreak of violence in June 2012. “We are deeply disturbed by the continuing violence against the Muslim community and we see there needs to be much more [done] in terms of security and in terms of responsiveness by local authorities, by the government, and hope people are held strictly accountable for these actions,” he said. “[I]nternational organisations will not look away from [the impact of the

violence] and we will not ignore [it]. “[I]n Rakhine State in particular we still have … people living in terrible conditions in IDP camps, without livelihoods … and increasing difficulties for international organisations to bring them humanitarian assistance.”

‘There needs to be much more done in terms of security and responsiveness by local authorities.’
Derek Mitchell US ambassador to Myanmar

He called on political, religious and civil society leaders to work harder to counter extremist voices. “There need to be more powerful voices from civil society, the government and religious leaders to oppose this [violence] unconditionally and hold people accountable,” he said. “I think it is a very deep-seated problem … There is a question over whether [the violence] is an organised effort or [has an] organisation behind it.” For many, the “969” movement has become the public face of anti-Muslim extremism. Mr Mitchell acknowledged it is a “sensitive issue” but said the international community is concerned that the movement preaches an “exclusive view of Buddhism [that is] intolerant of other faiths”. “We recognise that ‘969’ is deeply felt as the representation of Buddhist faith. We respect people cherishing

and celebrating the Buddhist faith. “I think there has to be clarification from the leaders of that movement and others who celebrate Buddhism how [969] connects to the broader ethics of this country, which is tolerance and coexistence. There is no way this country, a new Myanmar, will succeed if that sense of tolerance and coexistence [disappears].” Mr Mitchell’s Indian counterpart, Gautam Mukhopadhaya, said people in Rakhine State must find a way to settle their problems peacefully. “I think the message of Gandhi is very clear,” he said on the sidelines of a ceremony in Yangon for International Day of Non-Violence, which marks the 144th anniversary of the birth of Mahatma Gandhi. “All violence is abhorrent and if there are issues … we should find a way of settling them without resorting to violence.”


FM promises ‘zero tolerance’ to violence
TIM MCLAUGHLIN MYANMAR’S top diplomat has told the United Nations that the government is taking a “zero tolerance” stance toward those responsible for religious and inter-communal unrest that has plagued the country over the past 18 months. Speaking in New York at the General Assembly on September 30, Minister for Foreign Affairs U Wunna Maung Lwin said that Myanmar would not let its democratic transition be misused by those who seeking to stir up religious conflict. “There are always people who wish to rock the boat. We will not let anyone to take advantage of political openness to instigate violence among different ethnic or religious communities,” he said. He said the government is cooperating with UN agencies and humanitarian groups to assist all affected people, while at the same time working with local groups to encourage inter-faith dialogue “with a view to promoting understanding and trust among different communities”. While trumpeting the government’s “unprecedented” reform agenda and the progress made to date, particularly on peace agreements with armed ethnic groups, he said it is under “no illusion that the next step [in the peace process] will be an easy one”. U Wunna Maung Lwin’s comments came as clashes between Buddhists and Muslims again flared in Rakhine State, this time in the southern town of Thandwe, where Buddhist mobs descended on the town on September 29 and destroyed a number of Muslim homes and a Mosque. While security forces initially brought the situation under control, violence spread to nearby villages on October 1 and 2, leaving five Muslims dead and scores of Muslim homes destroyed. U Wunna Maung Lwin did not mention the Rohyinga Muslims, or Bengalis as they are officially known, nor did he specifically mention Rakhine State, which has been at the centre of much of the violence over the past year. The relatively low profile of the Myanmar delegation was in noticeable contrast to last year’s General Assembly, when President U Thein Sein became the first visit Myanmar head of state to address the body in 46 years. Adding to the attention was a visit to the UN headquarters just days earlier by Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, who met UN Secretary General Ban Kimoon. The stop in New York was part of a 17-day tour that saw her meet Mr Obama at the White House and collect the Congressional Gold Medal, the highest civilian award in the US. Prior to U Wunna Maung Lwin’s address, Myanmar attracted criticism in the human rights community on September 24 when it, along with 79 other countries, refused to endorse the Declaration of Commitment to End Sexual Violence. A total of 113 countries signed the agreement, pledging to eliminate amnesties for sexual violence in peace agreements and strengthen monitoring of sexual violence. The Tatmadaw’s use of sexual violence, especially in ethnic conflicts, has been well documented by human rights groups. However, two new and potentially positive areas of engagement that attracted less attention. On September 26, U Wunna Maung Lwin met the secretary general of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu. Fractious relations between Myanmar and the 57-member Islamic bloc came to a head last year when President U Thein Sein backtracked on a pledge to allow the group to open an office in Myanmar. The decision came after large protests in Yangon led by Buddhist monks. A statement released by the OIC following last week’s meeting said that the group would send a delegation to Myanmar soon but gave no specific timeline. The same day Minister for Immigration and Population U Khin Yi attended a meeting of the Group of Friends of Myanmar, led by Ban Kimoon, for the first time. Outside the UN, U Wunna Maung Lwin embarked on a speaking tour around New York, making appearances at a number of events focused on Myanmar’s transition and, in particular, the role foreign investors will play. At a panel hosted by the Asia Society on September 25, he urged American companies to “join the gold rush” of investors entering the Myanmar economy. A day later, he addressed a group at the Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting alongside former British Prime Minister Tony Blair.

Foreign Minister U Wunna Maung Lwin shakes hands with United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon before their meeting at the UN headquarters in New York on October 1. Photo: AFP

International condemnation of latest Rakhine State violence grows
TIM MCLAUGHLIN THE United States, the United Kingdom and the United Nations have all condemned the latest wave of violence to rock Myanmar’s restive Rakhine State. At the United Nations General Assembly in New York on October 1, Secretary General Ban Ki-moon expressed his concern over the violence during a meeting with Foreign Minister U Wunna Maung Lwin. Mr Ban said the government needs to take urgent action to protect Myanmar’s vulnerable citizens and stop the spread of violence. In a statement issued on October 2, the US embassy in Yangon said it strongly urges the authorities “to respond quickly and decisively to the violence to help protect all the region’s residents and their property”. “We further urge the authorities to thoroughly investigate and hold accountable those responsible for the violence, and provide all necessary protection and assistance to the victims and other vulnerable populations,” it said. British Minister of State Hugo Swire took to Twitter to say that he was “concerned” about the violence, adding that the “UK continues to call for peaceful resolution”. The most recent clashes between Buddhists and Muslims broke out on September 29 in the southern town of Thandwe. While the unrest was initially brought under control, the violence escalated on October 1-2, with about 60 homes destroyed and at least one person – a 95-yearold Muslim woman – killed. Five people, all Muslims, died in the violence. The Muslim population of Thandwe comprises mostly Kaman, an officially recognised ethnic group. On October 2, UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator Ashok Nigam said at a ceremony in Yangon to mark International Day of Non-Violence that the riots in Thandwe and previous violence in June “go[es] against the spirit of humanity and resolution of all differences through non-violent and peaceful ways”.

News 7

Speaker promises ‘support’ for Rakhine
Thura U Shwe Mann says country should recognise the efforts of Rakhine people to safeguard the country’s borders and culture


PARLIAMENTARY speaker Thura U Shwe Mann has praised ethnic Rakhine people for safeguarding Myanmar’s western border, as Rakhine representatives called for temporary ID cards to be scrapped and the right to form a people’s militia. During a meeting with members of the Rakhine community in Yangon on September 29, Thura U Shwe Mann said parliamentarians have a responsibility to “support” the Rakhine people. “It’s not enough to praise [Rakhine people] with words. Let’s cooperate to carry out our duties for the development of Rakhine State, and to physically and mentally support the people,” Thura U Shwe Mann said. He also urged respect for the efforts of the Rakhine people to safeguard the country’s land and maritime boundaries. “It’s not an easy task to take care of national sovereignty, territorial integrity, culture, traditions, customs and religion,” he said. “I appreciate the attempts of the Rakhine people to protect Myanmar ... despite the difficulties.” Rakhine representatives used

the meeting to explain the difficulties and challenges they face in regard to security, the rule of law, immigration, education and health. They also said that parts of the state, particularly Maungdaw, Buthidaung and parts of Sittwe township, have been occupied by illegal immigrants. “Illegal immigrants are using boats to enter Rakhine State

‘I appreciate the attempts of the Rakhine people to protect Myanmar ... despite the difficulties.’
Thura U Shwe Mann Pyidaungsu Hluttaw speaker

through creeks and rivers before the national census in 2014,” said lawyer U Bo Min Phyu. He urged the speaker to take action by bolstering the state’s security forces and scrutinising individuals holding temporary identity cards, also known as white cards. “White cards were not provided for in the 2008 constitution, nor

were they released in 1982,” the lawyer said. “White cards are unlawful.” Furthermore, Rakhine representatives called for the establishment of a “people’s militia” to protect the state themselves. “We’ll guard against all, making ourselves safe,” said Sittwe lawyer U Thar Pwint. “It’s fair for us to defend ourselves and our country in our own right.” He also called on Thura U Shwe Mann to do all he could to solve the unrest that has wracked Rakhine State since the outbreak of communal violence in June 2012. The parliamentary speaker promised to submit a report outlining all of the concerns raised at the meeting to the President’s Office and parliament. He conceded that there is still no rule of law or peace in Rakhine State. “If [someone] asks if there is an atmosphere of peace, tranquillity or rule of law in Rakhine State [the answer is] ‘no’,” Thura U Shwe Mann said. He also promised to take action against officials failing to follow the law, or violating it. “I believe that inviting us to this meeting means that you trust and rely on both me and members of parliament,” he said. “Our country was left behind for many years because we didn’t trust each other and lacked cooperation. Let’s build trust, cooperate and work together for the development of the state.”

Thura U Shwe Mann speaks at a meeting with Rakhine civil society leaders in Yangon on September 29. Photo: Boothee




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A soldier stands guard outside Thandwe Airport as President U Thein Sein arrives on October 2. President U Thein Sein is greeted on arrival at Thandwe Airport on October 2. Relatives of 48-year-old U Myint Lwin – daughter Htet Htet Lwin (left) and wife Daw Tin Tin Lay – explain how he was killed by a Buddhist mob in Thabuchai village on October 2. Soldiers deploy in Thandwe township on October 2. A man examines the remains of a Muslim school, or madrassa, in Thabuchai village that was destroyed by a mob on October 2. An elderly resident of Thabuchai village looks on as government officials, including Rakhine State Chief Minister U Hla Maung Tin, speak to them about the violence on October 3. A resident of Thabuchai stands beside the destroyed madrassa. Muslim residents of Thandwe township’s Lin Thee village stand inside their homes on October 2. Daw Zaw Lay Kha (left) describes how her mother, Daw Aye Kyi, 95, died on October 2, as another relative breaks down in tears. Photos: Kaung Htet





10 News BRIEFS
Weather warning SMS service on the way
Weather forecasts and early warnings about severe weather will be distributed to the public via short message system, or SMS, by end of the year, a Department of Metrology and Hydrology official said last week. Director U Chit Kyaw said the free subscription service is a collaborative project between the department and the Myanmar Red Cross Society and American Red Cross that will advance disaster risk reduction efforts in Myanmar. “We are planning to implement that project between October and December. Storm news, earthquake news and information about how to be safe before, during and after a disaster will help the public,” he said. “The user will also be provided with a link to the department website where they can find other useful information.” U Chit Kyaw said the SMS messages will be in the Myanmar language. – Aye Sapay Phyu


Ageing could block development
BRIDGET DI CERTO HSU HLAING HTUN THE elderly population in Myanmar is accelerating at a rate unparalleled in the region and without careful government planning could be a roadblock for economic advancement, an international NGO has warned. “Population demographics are based on a pyramid structure, but by 2050 there will be a serious ageing problem in Myanmar with no economically active group to run the country,” HelpAge country director Tapan Barman told The Myanmar Times last week. To keep the country’s economy on an upward trajectory, the goal must be to “keep older persons economically active”, especially as the country develops and younger people move away from the agricultural sector, Mr Barman said. It is predicted that by 2050, onequarter of Myanmar’s population will be considered aged. However, Mr Barman warned this could underestimate the scale of the problem. A complete census has yet to be undertaken, meaning the population of older people could be much higher than the current estimate of 9 percent. Additionally, while the international cut-off age for the older generation is 65, based on health indicators it is about 55 in Myanmar. In a July 2013 report titled Getting Rich Before Growing Old, the Parisbased Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development warned that Myanmar’s ageing population could place a drain on achieving economic prosperity. “The demographic dividend needs to be reaped now and the potential of the economy lifted by productivityenhancing reforms,” OECD Development Centre Director Mario Pezzini said of the report’s data. “Otherwise, Myanmar risks getting old before the incomes and living standards of its people can significantly improve.” At a ceremony in Nay Pyi Taw to mark International Day of Older Persons on October 1, Minister for Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement Daw Myat Myat Ohn Khin also underscored the impact of changing social dynamics, which she said are leaving older people in a uniquely vulnerable position. “We have to welcome the growing number of older people and in the meantime, we need to be alert that it is a challenge,” the minister said. Traditionally the elderly have been cared for by the children in family homes but this framework is quickly dissolving, Mr Barman said, with children increasingly likely to live outside the family home. Increased urban-rural migration, decreasing fertility rates and increasing life expectancy as the country modernises mean elderly relatives do not necessarily have a family safety net to support them in old age.
Khaut mote seller Daw Nyo. Photo: Ko Taik

In Yangon, a widow must work
THREE generations lived in the stately home: Daw Nyo and her husband, his parents and her four boisterous children. After finishing high school, Daw Nyo had become a proud housewife. She relished her family’s peaceful existence. That changed 22 years ago when her husband was killed instantly in a car accident. Her grown children left the family home. One moved abroad and another fell terminally ill. With the passing of her husband’s parents, the upkeep of the family home became too much. “My life used to be hopeful when I lived with my parents and got an education, and then with my husband. “Things are changing – there is increasing poverty, economic migration and no concrete income source for older people,” Mr Barman said. But now it is just me,” the 72-yearold Yangon native said. “My children don’t always visit. Sometimes I see them walk right past me on the street and I can only feel pain.” As the money dried up, the widower opened her own food stall 15 years ago, selling the popular sweet snack khaut mote on the corner of Bo Aung Kyaw and Bogyoke Aung San Road. She can make up to K7000 on a good day. On a bad day she is grateful she receives her husband’s K12,000 monthly pension from his service as a driver for the Ministry of Railways. Daw Nyo later moved in with her divorced daughter, who charges her “Older people continuing to make a productive contribution affects a successful community at [the grassroots] level,” Mr Barman said. “Communities become closer and stronger with the participation of older people.” Without a national focus on the livelihoods of older people, the social fabric could begin to fray, Mr Barman said. “Suicide rates can rise. We see older people living alone, only sometimes receiving help from a pagoda or church, [with] lots of health problems. “Access to health care is limited. There were only two geriatric specialists in all Myanmar and one was promoted to director of health, so now there is only one,” Mr Barman said. This is beginning to change. Momentum is building behind a national policy, law and plan of action for ageing that have been in planning since 2008. Further policy development K500 for dinner – the only daily meal she eats. To start her enterprise Daw Nyo had to borrow K10,000, for which she had to repay K20,000. Medical expenses are another challenge. “There is a free clinic here near the railway but it is too far to walk. I can only get some pills for K2000 from a closer clinic,” she said, adding she is unaware of any other government assistance she may be eligible for. “I am not facing starvation. I go to the pagoda every day to meditate and try to live a peaceful life. I have to hope someday someone will be able to help me.” – Bridget Di Certo and Zon Pann Pwint will take place under the auspices of a national committee on the elderly to be set up before the end of the year. For the 2013-2014 financial year, the government has budgeted K127.78 million, coupled with K75.5 million of United Nations Development Program funds, to aid 62 aged care homes across the country. “We will soon open a day care centre for the aged in Yangon,” minister Daw Myat Myat Ohn Khin said on October 1. “This 10 percent [of the population] is particularly in need of social protection.” However the expense of institutional care for old persons is unsustainable both for the government and for the elderly themselves, Mr Barman said. “These facilities are really for the rich elite in Myanmar. A rural old person cannot access this institutional care.” – With translation by Zar Zar Soe

Representatives turned the spotlight on city development issues in the seventh session of the Mandalay Region Hluttaw, which was held between September 12 and 26. Of the 201 questions put by members during the session, 64 concerned city issues such as street cleaning, the maintenance of roads and bridges, construction issues and squatting. “The relevant ministries answered the questions, saying they would meet the concerns expressed in accordance with their budget,” said U Thein Hla, representative for Pyigyitagun 2. During the session, bills relating to gem cutting and polishing and animal breeding were passed, and revised budget estimates were approved. “Out of 12 proposals, 10 were passed and the remainder recorded in the hluttaw,” Mandalay Region Hluttaw Speaker U Win Maung said. – Si Thu Lwin, translated by Zar Zar Soe

Mandalay Hluttaw focuses on municipal issues

Murder trial begins at Southern District Court

Yangon’s Southern District Court heard details concerning the murder of a woman by decapitation on July 15. The suspects were charged on August 14 over the murder of Daw Sein Than in a betel nut plantation in the Southern District Court. Police allege that the three suspects, who were arrested on July 17, were hired by another man for K5 million to murder Daw Sein Than following a dispute over the ownership of farmland. – Aung Kyaw Min

Percentage of Myanmar’s population that will be over 65 in 2050


HelpAge has piloted grassrootsbased elderly empowerment projects in 200 locations that have opened a window of opportunity for both rural and urban older people to regain dignity and financial independence.

Police launch public awareness campaign

Police in 44 townships in Yangon Region distributed pamphlets door to door in an effort to help people protect themselves against crime, a Yangon Region spokesperson for the force said. The handouts included warnings about how to recognise and take precautionary measures against those who pose a threat to society, such as the mentally unstable, the greedy, the licentious and the hostile. Women were cautioned to keep their doors locked, to not let strangers into their homes and to never stay alone in a house. The October 1 campaign was part of Myanmar Police Force Day. - Aung Kyaw Min

Military failing to curb child soldier use: US
NAN TIN HTWE THE power and influence of the Tatmadaw continue to limit the ability of civilian police and courts to take action over forced labour and underage recruitment into the military, the United States said last week. In its Trafficking in Persons 2013 report, the US State Department listed Myanmar as one of seven countries where the military continues to recruit and use child soldiers, along with countries such as the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Somalia and Syria. “In April 2012, Burma’s commander-in-chief reportedly issued an order stating that soldiers accused of committing forced labour would be tried under civilian rather than military courts, though there was no evidence that this policy had been implemented,” the report said. It added that there were reports that the Ministry of Defence has undertaken independent efforts to investigate and punish military personnel for their involvement in recruiting children for military service but the government did not confirm these reports. The report said four countries – Central African Republic, DRC, Rwanda and Somalia – would receive limited or no military aid because of their use of child soldiers. It made no mention of whether Myanmar would receive military aid. Voice of America reported that assistant secretary of state for African affairs Linda Thomas-Greenfield said it was unclear whether Myanmar receives military assistance from the US. The report said that investigating and prosecuting recruitment and use of child soldiers in the Tatmadaw is generally not possible without the consent of high-ranking military and law-enforcement officers. “Anecdotal reports indicate that some children are threatened with jail if they do not agree to join the army, and are sometimes physically abused,” the report said. The International Labour Organization’s liaison office in Myanmar received 274 complaints of military recruitment of children in 2012, the report said. It said that while the Myanmar government has released some child soldiers it has not taken strong steps to prevent recruitment.

News 11

Kachin talks to focus on proposed nationwide ceasefire
EI EI TOE LWIN PEACE talks between the government and the Kachin Independence Organisation are to resume in the Kachin State capital of Myitkyina this week, with discussions expected to focus on the government’s nationwide ceasefire proposal. The two sides have been holding preliminary talks during September to move forward from the sevenpoint agreement they signed last May. “The talks will be held from October 8 to 10. We fixed the exact date after holding preliminary meetings [in September],” U Hla Maung Shwe, head of the technical team of Myanmar Peace Centre, told The Myanmar Times. He said the technical teams agreed to discuss five points, including military affairs, political issues and internally displaced persons. But he conceded that the nationwide ceasefire ceremony that the government wants all armed ethnic groups to attend in October is likely to dominate discussions. “Most of the discussion has been about a nationwide ceasefire agreement and political dialogue,” he said. “It is very important to get an agreement on those two points so that dialogue can be held starting in early 2014.” U Aung Min will lead the government delegation, which will also include members of parliament. On the Kachin side, General Sumlut Gun Maw will represent the Kachin Independence Army at the talks. International and local observers, including representatives of the United Nations, political parties

‘It is very important to get an agreement so that [political] dialogue can be held starting in early 2014.’
U Hla Maung Shwe Peace facilitator

and ethnic armed groups, have been invited as observers. U San Aung, a member of Peacetalk Creation Group based in Myitkyina, said the government should be prepared to offer the KIO guarantees of political dialogue. “The KIO don’t trust the government. The government has to try to build trust, or I don’t think the KIO will sign a ceasefire agreement,” he said. The long-running conflict is thought to have displaced more than 100,000 people since fighting broke out in June 2011.

MP , associates to face civil suit over delta land dispute
NOE NOE AUNG A COURT in Ayeyarwady Region has accepted a civil suit filed by farmers against three people, including a member of the regional hluttaw, whom they accuse of illegally confiscating their land in 2006-07. The district court on September 23 agreed to hear the case against three people connected with a company called Myo Kyaw Lin, which is allegedly owned by a former military officer; Ayeyarwady Region Hluttaw representative U Thein Tun; and U Naing Win, a retired director of the township Settlements and Land Records Department. The farmers, from five villages in Lemyethna township, filed the suit under section 42 of the Specific Release Act. The case is due to begin on October 7. U Phoe Phyu, a lawyer assisting the farmers, said they had only turned to the courts after previous efforts to resolve the dispute through the parliamentary land investigation commission had failed. “Though the farmers tried to solve it through legislative and executive means, these have not worked. That’s why we are trying to solve it through the judiciary,” U Phoe Phyu said on October 2. “I have no idea what result to expect. We hope that by charging them they will no longer try to avoid this issue they have created,” he said. “In many cases, rich people think a problem is over if they gave [compensation] to the farmers. And sometimes, farmers think everything is fine if they get compensation. I think this is wrong. This mindset frees people who have broken the law from their actions,” he said. “I have told the farmers to charge them without expecting any compensation.” Altogether 88 farmers, who lost 349 acres, are involved in the suit. Fifty-four farmers from three villages have sued the former military officer – the company’s managing director – with grabbing a total of 291 acres, while 23 farmers from Lattan Nge village sued the parliamentarian and retired director with taking 94 acres, and 11 farmers from Myoe Gone village sued the MP for taking 64 acres. The farmers said officials had colluded with the company to destroy their evidence of land ownership in 2005. “Before the company took the land we were working, they told us to give our receipts that showed

Former residents of Mee Kyaung Kan ward protest in downtown Yangon on October 2. Photo: Zarni Phyo

MPs negotiate end to ‘full-time’ protest

Lawyer U Phoe Phyu is assisting farmers in Ayeyarwady Region in a civil suit against representatives of an agricultural company. Photo: Christopher Davy

HUNDREDS of demonstrators camping opposite downtown Yangon’s High Court building ended a roundthe-clock demonstration on October 5, after MPs agreed to raise their land confiscation complaint with the military. The demonstrators agreed to call off their protest, launched on October 2, after a three-hour meeting with the Pyithu Hluttaw representatives for South Okkalapa and Ahlone, U Aung Thein Linn and U Khine Maung Yi. The MPs are both members of a land dispute investigation commission set up by the parliament. “They promised us that they are going to discuss [our complaint] with military officials as soon as possible and will give us a solution,” demonstrator U Sein Than told The Myanmar Times on October 5. “That’s why we agreed to cancel our protest today.” Police had earlier warned that the demonstrators would likely face charges under section 18 of the peaceful protest law for their protest, which was held without prior permission. The demonstrators, who are evicted residents from Mee Gyaung Kan ward in Thingangyun township, had refused to disperse until authorities acted on their land-grab claims. “As they are protesting without permission, we are going to take action

against them under section 18,” Yangon Region Minister for Border Affairs General Tin Win said. “We told them to cancel their protest and solve the problem by peaceful means. We invited them to show proof for their claims, such as grants for the lands when they lived in Mee Gyaung Kan. But no one has come to us with documents,” he said. Asked about rumours of a possible police crackdown on the demonstrators, the minister responded that police would “resolve this in accordance with the peaceful assembly and peaceful protest law”. “We will decide to arrest them or to charge them under section 18 depending on their response. We have already explained what the possible consequences of their illegal protest are. We told them to go home, show us their documents and wait for our answers,” General Tin Win said. Police Colonel Thet Lwin denied rumours that the police were contemplating dispersing the camp by force. “Most of the protesters are women and older people. We would not use force against a group like that,” Pol Col Thet Lwin. There were still some casualties in the demonstrators’ camp. An elderly woman suffered a stroke after spending the night at the site and is in hospital. Six other people are also receiving medical treatment, protesters said. The Yangon Region authorities have stationed two ambulances near the camp and are providing medicine to the protesters, police said. While the protesters say they were

forcibly evicted without compensation, Daw Khin May Aye, deputy director of the Department of Human Settlement and Housing Development, said compensation was paid for the land 20 years ago. “The disputed lands were owned by the Ministry of Railways initially. We took over the lands from the ministry and transferred them to the military in 1990. DHSHD has no documentation to show that these people owned the land,” she said. “If they have such documents, they can show them to us. We can solve this problem only when they come to us.” But one protester, U Kyaw Lwin, told The Myanmar Times on October 4 that the government was “trying to turn back the clock” by claiming that the demonstrators have not approached them. “We showed the authorities our documents right at the beginning. We started protesting in January because they did not respond. We protested seven times without response, which is why we have made a permanent protest,” he said. “There was no invitation from the authorities to provide documents, and there was no discussion about our protest. “All they have done is just to order us to cancel our protest. That was kind of threatening. No one has come to us to solve the problem. “We don’t want to wait anymore,” U Kyaw Lwin said. “If we listen to them and go home, they will report our case to higher and higher levels and it will take a long time. When will we get a solution?”

we had been paying tax. We had to because of the officials from Settlements and Land Records Department. And a year later, they evicted us from our plantations and farmlands, saying we were farming them illegally,” said U Ba Khway, 65, of Watawkwin village.

The number of farmers involved in the civil suit against representatives of Myo Kyaw Lin company


“No one got any compensation. And they evicted us while we were farming at that time,” said U Zaw Naing from Myoe Gone village. But state hluttaw MP U Thein Tun said he was not involved in the land grab. “In 2006-07, I was head of the township administration office. A township administrator does not have the authority to seize the land. I am not involved in the dispute they mention. I did not grab their lands and I don’t have [an agriculture] business,” said U Thein Tun. The managing director of Myo Kyaw Lin declined to comment when contacted by The Myanmar Times last week.

12 News

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Children and soldiers participate in a candle-lighting ceremony for peace in Manila on September 28. Photo: AFP

World looks elsewhere as Aquino’s peace deal unwinds

IT’S a strange world. Over the past fortnight, front-page headlines have focused on a brutal terrorist attack at the Westgate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya’s capital. Al Shabab guerrillas, fighting to set up an Islamist state in neighbouring Somalia, infiltrated the shopping centre and murdered more than 70 civilians. Of course, it was shocking and deserved to be covered at length in the world’s press. But a similar episode, which began three weeks ago and still continues in the southern Philippine city of Zamboanga, has rated fewer headlines and yet wreaked far greater death and destruction. Whatever the reason for the skewed coverage, the carnage in Zamboanga has more significance for this region, especially for countries like Myanmar and Thailand, which also have large and disaffected Muslim communities.

The Zamboanga siege began when hundreds of Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) fighters landed by boat and stormed into the city, taking hostages and occupying several waterfront districts, which they still hold today. More than 150 people have been killed, buildings have been torched and destroyed, and about 120,000 residents have been forced to seek refuge elsewhere. Parts of the city, a major port and trading centre with a population of nearly 1 million, remain a war zone where bodies are left to rot on the streets. The stench is said to be unbearable. Last week, another Muslim rebel group, the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters, assaulted Midsayap, a town in central Mindanao. Again, hostages were taken and gun battles and deaths followed. Yet the world’s media still paid scant attention. That may change, however, if not only Zamboanga and Midsayap but also other cities go up in flames. What now looks sure to go up in flames is Philippine President Benigno Aquino’s framework agreement to grant the Muslim region greater autonomy and thus bring peace and stability.

Unfortunately, this agreement, signed last October with the most powerful Muslim group, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), has had the opposite effect – carnage and discord have ensued. The problem is that Aquino dealt only with the dominant MILF, thinking the other dissident groups were in decline and could be marginalised. He was mistaken. And now, with their assaults on Zamboanga and Midsayap and elsewhere, and the miniinvasion of Sabah earlier this year, they are proving him wrong. Aquino belatedly sought to draw the others into the peace process, but it was too late and anyway the more assertive MILF would have resisted such a move. Its chief negotiator, vice chairman Ghazali Jaafar, is an astute operator, as I discovered when spending time with him at his base just outside Cotabato City. After inking the agreement with Aquino, Ghazali said, “We are very happy. We thank the president for this.” And why not? They got the whole pie and have no intention of giving any of it up. So what to do? The rebel groups

are all heavily armed and their men are seasoned veterans who have been waging secessionist campaigns for decades and who will not easily be brought to one table. The sad prospect is for more Zamboanga-style bloodshed and mass destruction that will make Kenya’s Westgate Mall tragedy seem a rather petty affair. After all, consider the relatively minor attack on Midsayap. It was the work of a group that split from the MILF for the same reason as the MILF split from the MNLF – because they would not settle for limited autonomy. Ghazali’s men wanted more, and they got it under the agreement with Aquino, but it was still limited in that national security and foreign policy will remain under Manila’s control. Muslim hardliners cannot stomach that, and wanting nothing less than full independence, they broke away and formed the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters – and began their own violent campaign. So it’s a mess. And Aquino’s much lauded peace agreement, which has ended up causing havoc and bloodshed, is now sadly destined to bite the dust.

Dear Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, I hope you had a pleasant and fruitful stay while you were here in Singapore. Your visit appears to have been a busy one, meeting the Burmese diaspora, giving lectures, going on official visits and meeting the city-state’s leaders. Your recent visit to the island has all the markers of a state visit, with the Singapore government playing host. But I am certain that you are aware of the fact that for years, the administration that had been warm and gracious toward you is also the administration that had propped up the State Peace and Development Council government while the latter was carrying out atrocious acts against its citizens, including yourself. Singapore’s support of the repressive regime in Burma has today borne fruit. The latter is opening up your resource-rich country for investment. The Singapore government is authoritarian and non-transparent. It has arrested, tried, bankrupted and jailed dissenting voices for decades. It has taken away fundamental freedoms from the individual, such as that of peaceful public assembly and expression, in order to achieve the living standards that you alluded to on your visit here. Singapore was the main proponent of the “ASEAN Way”, which called for non-interference, informality, minimal institutionalisation, consultation and consensus, non-use of force and non-confrontation of ASEAN members. These principles provided some ASEAN governments with the ideal excuse not to speak out against your house arrest and other gross human rights violations committed in Burma. In contrast, opposition leaders in the region, such as Cambodia’s Sam Rainsy, Malaysia’s Tian Chua, Hong Kong’s Martin Lee and Singapore’s Chee Soon Juan, have all lent their voices to advocating for change in Burma, especially for the release of political prisoners. Four of my colleagues from the Singapore Democratic Party (SDP) and I were arrested in 2007 during the Saffron Revolution for protesting against the Singapore government’s involvement in Burma. I have no doubt that the liberty, justice and equality that Burmese citizens have been struggling for – the same freedoms that advocates living in Singapore, Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos and Malaysia are striving for – are still your highest priorities. Thus, I humbly ask that you join those of us who have been speaking up for Burma to speak up for all. Sincerely yours, Chee Siok Chin Alliance for Reform and Democracy in Asia (ARDA), Singapore

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A refugee from the Mae La camp on the Thai-Myanmar border. Photo: AFP

A lesson for Obama: It’s all about face


News 13

More cooperation vital to protect refugees

THE Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees and communitybased organisations working on Myanmar refugee issues have not always seen eye to eye. Community-based organisations in the past have criticised the UNHCR for not being transparent about its discussions with the governments of Myanmar and Thailand over their plans for the refugees. The community groups also believe it has not recognised the important role they can play in the planning and decision-making processes leading to the eventual return of refugees to Myanmar. These community groups are comprised of refugees themselves and are the best allies the agency can have to fulfil its mandate effectively and efficiently. But CBOs perform a number of additional valuable functions. They have taken the lead in raising awareness about the rights of refugees and international standards for voluntary repatriation, while also highlighting the importance of inclusiveness and transparency. They are in a position to advocate with the Myanmar government, which is more likely than the Thai government to attempt larger informal involuntary repatriation in the name of “pilot projects”. They can also communicate information from non-state armed groups, who also support voluntary repatriation and whose role will be significant when repatriation occurs, but who cannot be identified as “official” parties in the UNHCR framework. Finally, CBOs can also help identify partner organisations in areas within Myanmar to which refugees are likely to return. How will repatriation work? When the process eventually begins, the UNHCR will be party to a tripartite agreement signed with the governments of Myanmar and Thailand. All three core stakeholders say they uphold the principle of voluntary repatriation, and have agreed not to attempt to accelerate the process of repatriation or pressure refugees into

returning to Myanmar. All stakeholders agree in principle that now is not the time for the estimated 160,000 refugees on the Thailand-Myanmar border to be repatriated, as no one is confident that such an ambitious process can be safely undertaken at present. In the meantime, the UNHCR’s mandate is to protect the rights of refugees and to continue advocating for voluntary repatriation. It plays a vital role in preventing both governments from acting unilaterally and this role will become even more important once the tripartite agreement is signed. However, activities that directly or indirectly undermine the principle of voluntary repatriation have occurred. For instance, there have been reports of Thai army officials visiting Nu Po refugee camp and asking refugees informally to return home to Burma, promising that they would ensure that the Tatmadaw “doesn’t come to those areas”.

The UNHCR should try to listen to all relevant voices, including the full spectrum of community groups.

Another attempt was made by a Tatmadaw commander, who said that housing would be built for families returning to his area of control. The offer came shortly after Myanmar police from Tachilek in Shan State visited Koung Jor, a Shan refugee camp in Thailand’s northern Chiang Mai province. Such “informal” attempts by authorities on both sides of the border to repatriate refugees – generally isolated incidents that occur without broad consensus by relevant parties – must be halted immediately. Refugees rely upon the UNHCR to highlight these incidents as part of its mandate. The UNHCR must not fear upsetting the apple cart: Its role is to speak out against infringements or irresponsible activities by the governments or armies of Thailand and

Myanmar. Instead, it has been CBOs who have spoken out. However, recent progress has been made as a result of cooperation between UNHCR and community groups. These groups’ efforts to advocate for voluntary repatriation have been enhanced by the UNHCR’s limited but improved recognition of their role in the process. The UNHCR has recently introduced a channel for accommodating the input of community groups in the form of stakeholder meetings involving not only CBOs and the UNHCR but also non-government organisations, refugee committees and camp committees. This forum was held for the fourth time in Mae Sariang on August 21 and has enabled community groups to ensure that their role is officially recognised in the UNHCR coordination mechanism for voluntary repatriation. While these stakeholder meetings are a fruitful initiative and represent positive collaboration, they have been undermined by a variety of challenges. These include not only logistical issues, such as language barriers, travel restrictions and CBOs’ lack of resources, but also a lingering lack of trust and understanding between different stakeholders. The UNHCR should try to listen to all relevant voices, including the full spectrum of community groups working on refugee issues, and be transparent in terms of its own activities. These are early days and the fact that coordination attempts are happening at all is testament to a growing recognition of the role that each party plays. Both the UNHCR and CBOs should appreciate that they are working for the same cause – namely, advocating for voluntary repatriation, acting as a check and balance on the Myanmar and Thai authorities and, most importantly, protecting refugees – and will be more effective if they support each other. If they do, both parties can expect to build on the recent rapprochement to the benefit of the most important stakeholder: the refugees themselves.
Khin Ohmar is the coordinator of Burma Partnership, a network of regional and Myanmar civil society organisations supporting the collective efforts of all peoples working towards democracy, peace, justice and human rights in Myanmar.

BARELY a year after his historic trip to Myanmar last November, United States President Barack Obama was scheduled to be have been back in Southeast Asia this week for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Indonesia and the East Asia Summit in Brunei. That trip is now off due to a budget impasse and continued gridlock in Washington. Regardless of his troubles back home, Obama would no doubt have been welcomed with the appropriate respect and ceremony that Asian hospitality and diplomatic protocol would dictate for any American head of state. However, Asian views on American leadership have not necessarily been positive of late given flip-flops on Syria and a failure to negotiate a budget deal that would have prevented the partial shutdown of the US federal government. That does not bode well for the so-called pivot to Asia – the rebalance in US foreign policy toward the region. This is a region where there remains tremendous respect for not just thoughtful but also strong and decisive leaders. Singapore statesman Lee Kuan Yew, who as prime minister oversaw dramatic economic development in just a few decades and who recently celebrated his 90th birthday, is a leading example. But with Obama’s on-again, offagain approach to Syria dominating the headlines, as well as his ongoing struggles and face-off with Congress, one can well understand some Asian leaders’ quiet concerns about America’s attention span and focus, particularly in the context of China’s rise. Even as Obama scaled back and then cancelled his presidential trip, Chinese President Xi Jinpingwas beginning with great fanfare his own first trip to Southeast Asia since taking office as China’s leader in March. Ironically, as foreign businesspeople continue to take steps to understand China’s shifting landscape and the implications of recent leadership changes in the world’s second largest economy, Obama has provided an unfortunate “teaching moment” about what is arguably, along with money and power, one of the three great motivators in modern China. That is the concept of “face”, or mianzi, according to Scott D Seligman, a historian, former Fortune 500 business executive and author of Chinese Business Etiquette. In Chinese, as in English, the definition of face includes that space between a person’s forehead and chin – one’s eyes, nose and mouth. But as Seligman explains, for the Chinese and many others in Asia, face also describes a somewhat intangible concept that is tied to notions of personal dignity and respect. Losing face in Asia can have a lot more consequence than a bit of momentary embarrassment. People think of you differently. Credibility erodes. Power, prestige, influence and even expectations of your abilities can decline. Just more than a year ago, Obama drew his red line in the sand. “We have been very clear to the Assad regime, but also to other players on the ground, that a red line for us is we start seeing a whole bunch of

chemical weapons moving around or being utilised,” Obama said. “That would change my calculus. That would change my equation.” So what happened? Chemical weapons were used and Obama’s bluff was called. A non-response would have been a huge loss of face to the US president. But as the American public and numerous members of the US Congress made clear, the president had failed to make a strongenough case for military action. And so, the president did an about-face on whether or not he needed to have Congress authorise what seemed to be a potential strike of ever-shrinking size. That was before he changed his mind again and welcomed a decision to delay a possible vote. All of this may well have been seen by Obama and his defenders as a face-saving way out of a dilemma of his own making but the view from Asia was of a leader who was far from decisive. Russia has shrewdly stepped into the breach by proposing an agreement that would avert a US military strike. Make no mistake though. Russian President Putin was not practising the Chinese concept of “giving face” – described by Seligman as the practice of “enhancing someone else’s esteem through compliments, flattery or a show of respect”. Putin was helping to keep Assad in power in the near term and reassert Russian influence in the Middle East.

One can quite understand some Asian leaders’ concerns about America’s attention span and focus.
If the US can be outmanoeuvred by Russia when it comes to Syria, what about by an increasingly assertive China in Southeast and East Asia? As much of the region comes to terms with China’s economic and military growth, a US that moves beyond issues of face and complements defence and diplomacy with greater commercial, educational and cultural engagement would be welcome in Asia. The concept of face, Seligman says, is the reason why a Chinese manager will stick stubbornly to an announced policy, even when subsequent events prove it to have been irretrievably misguided and a Western boss would have long since reversed it. In the case of Obama and Syria, we may well have the worst of East and West – stubborn insistence by Obama that he does have a consistent, well-planned policy when the world sees otherwise. Seligman writes that “no one can say how much money has been wasted, how many people toppled from power or how many friendships have been destroyed” over the abstract concept of face. But as those of us who work in Asia know, and the people of Syria may well ultimately find out, face can also be deadly serious business.
Curtis S Chin served as US ambassador to the Asian Development Bank under presidents Barack Obama and George W Bush, and is managing director of advisory firm RiverPeak Group, LLC.

14 News


Women call for justice over sexual violence
Legal loopholes mean past and present victims of sexual violence in Kachin combat zones are unable to have their attackers punished, speakers tell Yangon forum


DECADES of conflict between government forces and local armed groups have taken a terrible toll on the residents of Kachin State. A recent conference in Yangon has drawn attention to one particular group of victims whose right to safety – and demands for accountability – is often overlooked: women. “Women are not sexual servants. Women are human,” Daw Shwe Shwe Sein Latt of the Women’s Organization Network told more than 400 participants at the Myanmar Women’s Forum, which was organised by the network and the Women’s League of Burma and held from September 20 to 22. Network member Daw Susanna Hla Hla Soe said that many women in embattled Kachin State have – in addition to losing family members and homes – suffered sexual abuse during the course of the conflict, which is often described as the world’s longest civil war. While the top priority must be stopping the conflict itself, Daw Susanna Hla Hla Soe said the next step should be to investigate offenders and bring them to trial before a court of law, and also to ensure victim’s stories are heard. “We need criminal justice to bring relief to the victims, the women who have suffered terrible pain in the civil war,” she said. “It has been 64 long years of suffering for women because of criminal violence in the Kachin conflict area.” Women’s groups at the forum called for, at minimum, public confessions and apologies from those found to have abused women. But they also said that shining a light on these crimes is difficult because political parties are reluctant to delve into the military government’s past actions. “Our people have got in the habit of forgetting their pain easily. But [it] is not easy [for the victims] to forget,

because it is something they will be dealing with for their whole lives,” Daw Susanna Hla Hla Soe said. According to United Nations Security Council Resolution 2016, which was adopted in June, those who commit offences against women during civil war must face prosecution in the International Criminal Court (ICC); the government in power must create truth commissions at the community level to find the truth about past incidents; and apologies must be given to victims. But article 43 of Myanmar’s constitution bans laws aimed at redressing past wrongs. “No Penal law shall be enacted to provide retrospective effect,” it states, adding that government officials cannot be punished for acts committed in the past.

‘We need criminal justice to bring relief to the victims, the women who have suffered terrible pain in the civil war.’
Daw Susanna Hla Hla Soe Women’s Organization Network

In the balancing act that is the current political system, no party has appeared willing to pursue the issue of retroactive punishment. Public discussions surrounding proposed amendments to the 2008 constitution have steered well clear of changes to section 43. “The government doesn’t want to go back into the past,” said Daw Nyo Nyo Thin, an MP in the Yangon Region Hluttaw. She said political parties are also wary because of the “current political situation” but many in parliament disagree with section 43 and want it to be amended. If or when that will happen, however, is unclear. “In my opinion, a truth commission cannot be established until 2015 in this country because opposition parties do not want to force the

government to establish them,” Daw Nyo Nyo Thin said. Daw Nan War Nu, a Pyithu Hluttaw representative of the Shan Nationalities Democratic Party, agreed that it is not yet possible to pursue retroactive justice for victims. “This is not the right time to call back past criminal cases of the former government,” she said. The country’s leading light of democracy and justice has also been silent on the issue. In a speech to Yale University students one year ago on how the country can move forward while at the same time recognise crimes that may have gone unpunished in the past, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi said she wants “restorative justice” rather than “retributive justice”. Past crimes aside, even pursuing justice for recent attacks proves difficult for those working on behalf of victims in Kachin State. Representatives of ethnic women’s organisations at the forum said that when they try to help women in conflict areas file criminal charges against their assailants, the authorities refuse to accept the case if a soldier was involved. They said that while not all cases of rape or other violence against women are committed by soldiers, the military nonetheless provides a safe haven for those who such crimes. Civilian perpetrators who find out they are under investigation often join border guard forces to avoid prosecution, as they know they will then gain immunity once in the military system. A spokesperson for the Kachin Women’s Association Thailand (KWAT) told The Myanmar Times this loophole leaves victims – and those working on their behalf – helpless. “We can’t do anything except write a report about the criminal case” to document the case for posterity and the attention of international authorities, she said. Daw Susanna Hla Hla Soe said it was essential that the military no longer be complicit in rights abuses against women. “The military cannot avoid criminal cases when the perpetrators are soldiers … They should take responsibility and find truth through fair justice.”

Maday Island residents protest outside Kyaukpyu District Court on September 26. Photo: Supplied/Snow

‘Arrest us all’: Maday residents protest jail terms
THAN NAING SOE MADAY Island residents have protested against jail terms handed down to 10 people for an illegal protest against a Chinese energy project in April, arguing that police should free the group – or jail everyone on the island. The 10 people were sentenced to three months’ jail with hard labour on September 26 under section 18 of the peaceful protest law for the April 18 demonstration against a China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) project on the island. As they were sentenced, residents from four villages on the island, which is in southern Rakhine State, protested for almost six hours outside the court, a civil society activist said. “The protesters said that all people in Maday Island protested against CNPC, not only these 10 people. If the police want to arrest those involved they should arrest everyone. That’s what they were saying,” U Tin Thit, president of the Mandalay-based environmental group Seinyaungso, told The Myanmar Times from Kyaukpyu last week. On September 30 lawyer U Htain Lin submitted an appeal on behalf of the 10 jailed demonstrators. He said he expects a response in about three weeks. “We have appealed to Kyaukpyu District Court. It will take at least 20 days to get an answer,” he said. The April 18 protest took place without permission after the authorities rejected three applications from Maday Island residents to demonstrate against the CNPC project. – Translated by Thiri Min Htun

Under fire, bus committee chairman agrees to step down
AYE NYEIN WIN THE body that oversees bus transport in Yangon has received its third makeover in as many years in an effort to placate angry members, while its embattled chairman has also agreed to step aside. At a meeting on October 1, the Yangon Region Supervisory Committee for Motor Vehicles, better known by its Myanmar acronym of Ma Hta Tha, agreed to expand its leadership body to nine people by adding another representative for bus owners. The committee will now have four members appointed by the government and five by its members, including three by bus owners, one by bus drivers and one by conductors. Chairman U Tin Htut, who is facing five civil charges filed by Ma Hta Tha members, as well as one criminal charge, will be replaced by U Htein Win, committee vice chairman U Min Zaw told The Myanmar Times last week. Two representatives of bus owners will also be replaced. The changes will come into effect on October 8 and follow months of campaigning by members, who have called for an overhaul to make the committee more independent of the government. Previous changes in May 2011 and June 2012 have not gone far enough, they said. U Min Zaw said members are hopeful that U Htein Win would address their concerns. He said the new chairman is a former Myanmar ambassador to Brazil and members believe his management and diplomatic skills will help resolve the committee’s problems quickly and effectively. The changes come as more than 600 Ma Hta Tha members sent a complaint letter to President U Thein Sein opposing plans to develop the committee’s Mingalar Taung Nyunt office, alleging that U Tin Htut and other senior officials have not been transparent about the proposed development. They have also sent letters of the complaint to Yangon Region Chief Minister U Myint Swe and Yangon City Development Committee (YCDC). Members have told The Myanmar Times they are against the plan because it is unnecessary and the lack of transparency means it is unclear who will benefit from the development. The existing building on Theinbyu Road is used by one of the committee’s eight departments. ‘’The present two-storey building is owned by the public,” said U Win Zaw, a deputy head of department at Ma Hta Tha and chairperson of the township labour association for transport workers. “They did not ask what anybody else thinks about the idea. There is no transparency.” Ma Hta Tha officials have proposed contracting a private company to build an eight-to-12-storey building, U Win Zaw said. As many as 16 companies have responded to a tender for the project, under which the company will receive half of the new building. U Win Zaw said staff only found out about the plan when the Yangon Region government reported it to YCDC. The Myanmar Times contacted Ma Hta Tha chair U Tin Htut for comment but he declined to comment and said he was unaware of the issue. Bus owner U Ko Ko Naing said he is opposed to the building project. ‘’The committee has not been transparent about the tender. The current building was built using money from bus owners and bus workers,” U Ko Ko Naing said. “The chairman is not appointed by the public – he is assigned directly by the government – and I think the chairman is just doing whatever he wants. We can’t accept that project.”

News 15

Hluttaw passes Telecoms Law, rejects two amendments

Thai govt promises new migrant passport system from October 11
BILL O’TOOLE OFFICIALS from Thailand’s Department of Labour have said a new system for issuing passports to migrant workers has been agreed upon and will be rolled out after the department’s next meeting on October 11. However, sources both inside and outside the government say the proposed system may take more time to sort out, and is unlikely to resolve many of the problems that plague the existing one. The department confirmed the new system in an October 2 statement that also described recent reports in The Myanmar Times about Thailand’s migrant policy as “inaccurate”. “The Myanmar Times, a newspaper of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar, reported on ongoing negotiations between Myanmar and Thailand on the migration issues ... as being uncertain, which has caused much confusion and tension amongst migrants in Thailand,” the department’s director general said in the statement. The statement adds that all details of the program were agreed during a meeting between Myanmar and Thai officials on September 5. The next bilateral meeting will finalise what has already been agreed, it said. However, minutes from the September 5 meeting obtained by The Myanmar Times indicate that no agreement was reached. It said a number of proposals would be taken back to the respective governments on both sides of the border. The October 2 statement said that the new system will enable migrants to apply for or renew passports at four “one-stop centres” along the border. Under the revised scheme, workers applying to renew labour passports would be required to return to Myanmar for at least one day. Several activists have already

AFTER months of discussion, the Telecommunications Law has been approved and will be enacted this week. Approved during the seventh session, the bill was returned to the Pyidaungsu Hluttaw by President U Thein Sein, who recommended five changes. MPs on October 3 accepted three of those changes, which mostly focused on definitions within the law. Representatives rejected the president’s suggestion to change section 3( j), which defines “telecommunications apparatus”, and section 64, which concerns an appeal tribunal set up under the law. While the original bill listed pieces of telecommunications equipment, MPs changed it so that the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology would be responsible for issuing an order with a list of equipment. MPs voted against reverting back to the original wording on the recommendation of the Joint Bill Committee, which said the new definition was better because it did not mean the law would have to be amended when “new [equipment] appears due to technological advances”. The president had also argued that section 64, which MPs had added to clarify the term of an appeals tribunal – “from the day it is formed to when its final decision report is sent to the Union Government –

should be cancelled because the tribunal is a “long-term body”. But the Bill Committee argued that section 64 is necessary because section 59 of the bill makes clear that the tribunal is not a permanent body. The other three amendments suggested by the president were approved. In regard to section 52(c), which states that “If a person is not satisfied with the decision of the ministry, he or she can appeal to the appeals tribunal within 45 days according to the procedure,” the president said the law needs to clearly state when the 45 days begins. The Joint Bill Committee agreed with the remark and MPs agreed to add the sentence, “A dissatisfied person can appeal within 45 days starting from the day a decision is made.” The President recommended that section 63 should clarify which department should cover the costs of the chairperson of the appeals tribunal and its members. At the suggestion of the Bill Committee, MPs agreed to add that costs would be covered by “the department nominated by the Union Government”. The president recommended cancelling section 88(c) because it is repeated elsewhere, to which the Bill Committee and MPs agreed. The same day the Pyidaungsu Hluttaw also approved the Farmers’ Rights Protection Law and the Union Judiciary Law, which had been sent back to the Pyidaungsu Hluttaw by the president with seven and five proposed changes respectively. – Translated by Thiri Min Htun

A migrant worker from Myanmar takes a break from sorting fish at a port in Pattani in southern Thailand in September. Photo: AFP

questioned the efficacy of this policy, describing it as impractical and warning that it could leave migrants open to exploitation when they apply to renew their passports. Sai Kawng, who runs migrant outreach programs in the Chiang Mai area, said that migrant workers often make less that 300 baht (US$10) a day and the cost of travel to the centres would be a major burden. Phil Robertson, Asia director for Human Rights Watch, echoed Sai Kawng’s concern. “If you’re going to issue Burmese passports in Thailand, why not do it in Bangkok rather than making everyone travel all the way up to the border?” He also questioned the logic of making the migrants leave Thailand, even for a single day.

“Sending migrant workers out of Thailand to Myanmar to complete this procedure will jack up the costs for sure since people have to navigate two corrupt bureaucracies instead of one, and [they] also have to dodge the various brokers, ethnic militias and other profit-seekers and exploiters targeting migrants on the Burmese side of the border.” A source in the Thai government, who asked not to be named, said he was unsure if it would be possible to reach an agreement on the program by October 11. The source said there are still many details that the two governments disagree on, including how the fees collected from the workers will be shared by the various agencies involved.

16 News


Conservation group WWF enters Myanmar
TIM MCLAUGHLIN ENCOURAGED by the government’s stated commitment to environmental sustainability, the World Wildlife Fund is to begin working in Myanmar next year. The expansion represents an important step in the global conservation organisation’s activities in the Greater Mekong Subregion, WWF officials told The Myanmar Times last week. They said the organisation has received a warm reception from the government and is waiting final approval to begin work. It is in the process of establishing a small office in Yangon, with activities likely to focus on supporting the government’s policy goals. “We are hoping to assist with the aspirations of the government,” said Michelle Owen, WWF conservation program manager for Myanmar. “They are looking to create a sustainable balance between development and environment. Balancing protection of resources with sustainable utilisation to support communities and support economic growth.” The WWF sees Myanmar as a vital final addition to the group’s work in the Greater Mekong Subregion, adding to its operations in Laos, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia and China. Ms Owen said the interconnectivity between these countries and Southeast Asia more broadly is already substantial and is set to grow following the launch of the ASEAN Economic Community in 2015. This is likely to bring substantial environmental impacts, particularly given Myanmar’s large cache of natural resources. WWF’s launch in Myanmar has been in planning for about a year. A key moment for the group came in July when Carter Roberts, the organisation’s chief executive officer and president of its US branch, met President U Thein Sein in Washington. Following the meeting Mr Roberts lauded U Thein Sein’s commitment to tackling the environmental issues that Myanmar is facing, saying that U Thein Sein “characterised Myanmar’s wildlife and other living natural resources as the heart and soul of his nation”. Though the awareness of links between development and the environment is high, Myanmar government officials told the WWF that the capacity to address them remains limited – something that both parties are keen to change. “They [the government] are enthusiastic,” Ms Owen said, “to get the right policies in place and the right capacities in place so that as economic development enhances they do it in a green way.”

Men walk through floodwater in Sagaing Region’s Kalay township last week. Photo: Chinworld

Kalay flood claims at least one life
AYE SAPAY PHYU A 16-YEAR-OLD boy drowned and three other villagers are missing after heavy rain and flash floods lashed Sagaing Region in late September. U Aung Kyaw, assistant director of the government’s relief and resettlement department said heavy rains on September 28 had raised the water level of Myitthar River and the Nayrinzara and Nankalain creeks. “A total of 35 houses were washed away in the flood. A 16-yearold boy from Htan Sin village in Kalay township was drowned while swimming in floodwater. Three others from San Myo quarter and Indaing Gyi village in the township who were swept away are still missing,” he said on October 3. He also said three houses in Mingin township in Sagaing Region were washed away by a flash flood on September 29. U Pau No, a resident of the Tar Han quarter of Kalay, said the water started to recede on the evening of September 29. “The floodwater in some houses was 4 feet (1.2 metres) deep. We haven’t seen flooding in those areas in the past. It rained all Saturday and the waters gradually rose on Sunday morning. About a quarter of the township was underwater on Sunday,” he said. According to the Department of Metrology and Hydrology, 7.44 inches (18.9 centimetres) of rain fell in the township within 24 hours. Department deputy director U Kyaw Lwin Oo said the monsoon was forecast to withdraw from the whole country during the first 10 days of October, but rain could still be expected in some areas because of storm conditions in the Bay of Bengal.

News 17

London mayor to push city’s financial sector
FIONA MACGREGOR LONDON’S lord mayor is to visit Myanmar this week to promote links with British investors and encourage closer cooperation with the United Kingdom as Myanmar rebuilds its financial sector. Writing for the The Myanmar Times ahead of his visit, Roger Gifford urged Myanmar firms to partner with counterparts in the City of London to develop financial infrastructure and undertake major construction projects. (See related article page 28.) It is the first time a lord mayor of London has paid an official visit to Myanmar. Mr Gifford will arrive in Yangon on October 10 before travelling to Nay Pyi Taw the next day. The visit will conclude on October 12. The trip follows President U Thein Sein’s visit to the UK in July to highlight Myanmar’s potential as a market for British investors. Mr Gifford is scheduled to attend a reception to launch a Financial Literacy program supported by financial services company Standard Chartered. He is expected to meet Yangon Region Chief Minister U Myint Swe, Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry president U Win Aung and the head of the Myanmar Institute for Certified Public Accountants, a spokesperson said. The lord mayor described engagement with Myanmar as an “important priority” for the business community in Britain. “It is my hope that this visit will enable me to understand better the opportunities for British business in this region, and the needs of the local community,” he added. Much of the foreign investment since Myanmar has opened up has come from Asia but Mr Gifford – who promotes the City of London, a noted financial centre, around the world – predicted greater links with Western investors in future. Pointing to the work being done by British financial and business advisers on planned privatisation legislation, he said, “This is exactly the kind of collaboration we must encourage to benefit both our countries, and on this visit I will focus on understanding other, similar areas where British companies can provide support and expertise.” In August the UK and Myanmar governments launched a financial services taskforce including UK financial service organisations Standard Chartered, Allen & Overy, and Prudential to help develop financial products and services aimed at providing credit and develop education, training and qualifications for the sector. The UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s Prosperity Fund has pledged £450,000 (about US$730,000) for the promotion of transparent and equitable economic reform in Myanmar. The grants covers a range of activities, including formulating policies on public-private partnerships, strengthening the accountancy profession and supporting the Myanmar Investment Commission to undertake responsible investment assessments.

Villagers plan charges against police over raid
HSU HLAING HTUN TEN villagers arrested for allegedly detaining and beating police in Nay Pyi Taw have applied to file trespassing charges against the officers. About 20 police entered Pobbathiri township’s We Gyi village at about 2am on September 19 to arrest four people charged with damaging government property. However, they were soon set upon and detained by villagers. Reinforcements from Nay Pyi Taw freed them about five hours later, with seven police hospitalised. Ten people later handed themselves in to police on September 28 to face three charges, including voluntarily causing grievous hurt to deter a public servant from his duty, which carries a jail term of up to 10 years. “We’ve also opened a lawsuit against the police for trespassing at nighttime,” said one of the accused, Ko Zaw Latt. “We will accept any penalty if we are found guilty – provided the judgement is fair and without bias … We want to face these charges within the law.”

Insurance companies sponsor athletes
THIRTEEN Myanmar companies have joined together to provide insurance for the country’s athletes during this year’s Southeast Asian Games. The companies are also offering insurance coverage to visiting athletes, should they choose to opt for a local provider. State-run Myanma Insurance and 12 private insurance companies will sponsor athletes participating in 27th SEA Games, which will begin in Nay Pyi Taw on December 11. The companies will share the cost of the insurance, Deputy Minister for Finance U Maung Maung Thein said. “It will include reserve athletes but not managers,” he said. ”All 13 insurance companies will give insurance for injuries and death.” He said the games represents an opportunity for the insurance firms – which, with the exception of Myanma Insurance, are newly established – to promote themselves to potential customers both inside Myanmar and abroad. The insurance policies will start on November 1 for local athletes and provide coverage until the end of the games season. – Shwegu Thitsar, translated by Thiri Min Htun

Men arrested over the September 19 raid on We Gyi village sit in Kyitaungkan police station on September 28. Photo: Pyae Thet Phyo

Police Lieutenant Colonel Thura said the villages had surrendered following negotiation between officials, a Buddhist leader and a local National League for Democracy MP. “The sayadaw and [Pyithu Hluttaw representative] Daw Sandar Min mediated between the accused villagers and the police,” Pol Lt Col Thura said, adding that the inves-

tigation would be conducted in a transparent manner. “The district station where the case will be investigated has security cameras so everyone has the right to watch the police interview.” The 10 have been remanded in custody for 15 days as the bail can not be considered under the charges. – Translated by Zar Zar Soe

18 News


‘We are ready,’ Chinese firm says
Chinese firm prepares to resume development of the Letpadaung mine after almost half of affected villagers refuse compensation offer


THE controversial Letpadaung mining project in Monywa is ready to resume despite continuing protests from villagers, half of whom rejected compensation offers that expired on September 30. “We are ready [to resume the project] now,” said Liu Xiaopum, public relations manager for Myanmar Wanbao Company, the main investor in the project. “We are awaiting permission from the government and the completion of land compensation payments.” Wanbao launched the Letpadaung copper mine project in November 2011 in cooperation with army-owned Union of Myanmar Economic Holding Limited (UMEHL), planning to invest US$997 million to produce about 100,000 tonnes of copper a year. But the project was suspended in 2012 due to a protest campaign by local residents amid concerns about land-grabbing, profit-sharing contracts, and the negative social and environmental impact. Following repeated violent clashes in which hundreds were injured, including monks, President U Thein Sein set up a commission of investigation led by Daw Aung San Suu Kyi. The panel made a number of recommendations, including a review of the contract, additional compensation for the villagers, and a social, economic and environmental assessment about the project. “We have implemented all the recommendations of the commission led by Daw Aung San Suu Kyi. And now we have assembled all the necessary equipment and machinery to resume the project,” Mr Liu told The Myanmar Times on September 30. Mr Liu added that the company had already completed the final

A man carries containers next to pools at a mining waste dump near the Letpadaung mine in Sagaing Region. Photo: AFP

draft of an environmental and social impact assessment in cooperation with an Australian company, Knight Piesold. “We sent the report to the government at the end of August, and the government has already approved it. We hope the report can be published soon,” said Mr Liu. A revised contract concluded in July allots 51 percent of the profit to the Myanmar government, with the remaining 49pc to be shared by Wanbao and UMEHL. Wanbao says it has also been paying villagers additional land compensation since March based on the commission’s

recommendations. However, villagers say they have received inadequate support from the company and rejected its compensation offer. The government subcommittee on land compensation says the villagers have refused compensation for half the total area of the land involved, despite offers of K500,000 to K1.5 million an acre. “Today is the final day for the villagers to accept compensation. According to our list we can compensate 50.36pc of them,” Sagaing Region Minister for Mining U Than Htike said on September 30. He added that some residents,

particularly in Moegyopyin Alae, Saetal and Tone villages, were afraid to accept compensation because of “politics”.

Households affected by the Letpadaung mine expansion which refused compensation

The minister also denied rumours that the amount of compensation might be increased. “We can pay the amount fixed by the Daw Aung San Suu Kyi commission,” said U Than Htike. The commission’s report recommended the project continue, despite widespread opposition from local communities. Residents said last week they plan to continue their campaign to have the project cancelled “I haven’t accepted any compensation yet. We are still demanding the closure of the project,” said Ko Nyi, a resident of Tone village. Others, who accepted compensation because their land had already been destroyed by the company, said their lives in new “model” villages built for displaced residents are much more difficult. U Myo Win, 40, was relocated from Kantaw village in 2011 after losing 26.37 acres of farmland. He said Wanbao had broken its promises to residents. “We now live in a poor-quality house on a small plot of land. It is very hard to earn a living,” he said. “The company promised to create more jobs before we moved, but they didn’t do it. Now I have no farm and no job. How am I supposed to live?” The company says it has employed 1300 people from the local community to work on the project and set up a job-creation scheme that will see more hired when the project resumes. “Once our machines are running, we can create more job opportunities for the local residents,” said Zhang Dong Song, chairman of Myanmar Wanbao. Company officials told The Myanmar Times they want to ensure good relations with residents who, they said, appreciate the benefits of the project. “The compensation program will end today,” Mr Liu said. “We hope the government will soon declare a date to restart the project.”

Slated for demolition, protest secures reprieve for Ledi hall
SI THU LWIN PROTESTERS demanding that a prominent religious building be spared from demolition faced down a police blockade in Sagaing as they marched to the Letpadaung copper mine project, the site of repeated clashes between local villagers and armed police. A standoff was defused when the police agreed to the protesters’ demands that the hall not be demolished without parliamentary approval, that the activists be allowed to pray at the hall and that they not be charged for their protest. The activists said they were marching to help preserve the Ledi ordination hall, and denied that their protest is connected in any way with other disturbances around the mine. “We met with two Sagaing Region ministers, for religious affairs and electricity. They agreed to our demands, so we decided to halt our march. But they said we had to seek permission for a pilgrimage three days in advance, so we applied today,” U Zaw Win, an activist who has been involved in anti-Letpadaung demonstrations, told The Myanmar Times on October 1. The march started in Mandalay on September 29, with demonstrators walking toward Letpadaung in Sagaing Region, where the ordination reviving the practice of Vipassana, or insight, meditation. The demonstrators were stopped at Sagaing by police, who said their procession was illegal because they had not been granted permission under the peaceful protest law. “The marchers were blocked by a large force of police in Sagaing. But the officials finally agreed to the protesters’ demands,” said U Myint Hlaing, an Amyotha Hluttaw representative for Sagaing Region. He said he would raise the issue of the demolition of the hall in the regional parliament. The marchers said the authorities also harassed them along their route. “We were barred by the police. They arrested some demonstrators when we reached Sagaing but released them shortly afterward because of public pressure and mediation by representatives from Sagaing Region Hluttaw and monks from the local Sangha Nayaka Committee,” said one marcher, U Ba Myint. Letpadaung remains under a curfew enacted under section 144, which covers disturbances against public order. – Translated by Zar Zar Soe

‘The marchers were blocked by a large force of police in Sagaing. But the officials finally agreed to the protesters’ demands.’
U Myint Hlaing Sagaing Region hluttaw representative

hall of the venerable Ledi Sayadaw is located. Ledi Sayadaw is famous for his many religious writings and his efforts to spread the dhamma, or teachings of Buddha, to every level of society. He is also credited with

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20 News


Govt targets April for land-use policy
Drafting process must include all stakeholders and policy should focus on protecting smallholder farmers, civil society network says


Pic: Christopher Davy

A PLANNED land-use policy will help avoid a recurrence of the widespread land disputes that have wracked Myanmar over the past two years, a senior government official says. Minister for Environmental Conservation and Forestry U Win Tun said the policy is being drafted in cooperation with “land expert groups from abroad” and should be finished by April 2014. A major focus is to ensure that ownership disputes are avoided and that land is used in a way that boosts the living standards of a broad swath of the population, he said at a press conference in Nay Pyi Taw on September 27. “In the past, there was no proper land use policy so sometimes we even had to stray from legal procedures, such as in the demarcation of forest reserves. This regularly caused problems for the people so we need to lay [out] clear and orderly land use policies,” the minister said. Tobias Jackson, an adviser to the Land Core Group, a network of civil society groups working on land-related issues, said the development of a national land-use policy as “absolutely essential” but stressed the need for an inclusive drafting process. Rural communities, smallholder farmers, the fishing industry, civil society organisations, ethnic groups and the private sector should all be consulted so that the policy is “able to balance the many competing needs of all its peoples for land and resources”. “The policy must not focus more on the needs of one interest group over another. Since the 1990s, land use policy where it has existed has been biased toward the needs of large-scale companies and agri-businesses with close links to government,” he said. “The needs of smallholder farmers were ignored and this must not continue with the new policy.” The absence of a land-use policy has “created uncertainty and confusion”, with farmers unwilling to invest in land that could be taken from them at any time. “The often-exploitative relationship between farmers and authorities … has resulted in a massive erosion of trust. “It is hoped that the forward-looking, reform-minded elements in government will have the stronger voice in development of a national land-use policy and this will ensure that smallholder farmers and fishers receive the land tenure security they require.” For the government, however, a major focus of the policy will be its ability to facilitate foreign investment.

“With this land use policy, we can properly manage land allocations – which land is to be used for mining, or oil and gas, or for plantations, for example,” U Win Tun said. “We can instantly show how many vacant lots there are when foreign investors come to look for opportunities. Even though we have many vacant areas, foreign investors always face difficulties in finding land.” Land disputes One concern for prospective foreign investors is the threat of land disputes with displaced farmers. Since U Thein Sein’s government took office in March 2011, hundreds of land disputes have emerged across the country, the majority resulting from decisions by the previous military government. A parliamentary commission was set up to investigate the issue and examined 745 disputes. Earlier this year it issued a set of recommendations on how they should be resolved. As The Myanmar Times reported last month, on September 16 the government established a committee to

oversee the implementation of the investigation commission’s three reports within the next 12 months. Vice President U Nyan Tun will head the central committee, with the ministers for home affairs and agriculture and irrigation as his deputies. The committee also includes five other ministers – defence, environmental conservation and forestry, industry, mining, and construction – as well as the chairman of Nay Pyi Taw Council and chief ministers of the 14 state and region governments. This committee features sub-committees for each region or state, as well as at the district, township and ward or village-tract levels. U Win Tun said the committee represents a genuine effort on the part of the government to correct the injustices of previous regimes and declared, “We have changed our attitude. “Our ambition is to serve the public until they are pleased with their government. People will see it soon through our honest and transparent actions [on the land dispute issue],” he said. “Land must be given back to the

original owners if there is not irrefutable evidence from those who took the land [that they did so fairly]. At least compensation will have to be given to the original owners if it is not possible to give back the land. “There may be delays in giving back the land to the right people … We

‘With this land use policy, we can properly manage land allocations – which land is to be used for mining, or oil and gas, or plantations.’
U Win Tun Minister for Environmental Conservation and Forestry

will carry out our tasks transparently.” However, his comments were soon contradicted – at the same press conference – by the deputy minister for home affairs, Brigadier General Kyaw Zan Myint, who said the military would only return land to those who had “irrefutable evidence” of prior ownership. Of the disputes examined by the investigation commission, more than three-quarters involved land grabs by military bodies. Brig Gen Kyaw Zan Myint said 38,000 of the 240,000 acres taken by the military and referred to the commission have already been returned to their original owners. Pyithu Hluttaw representative and land commission member Thura U Aung Ko said one year was more than enough to resolve the disputes. “Actually it is too long,” he said. “That means only two need to be solved each day and it should happen faster because the state and region governments can work on different disputes at the same time. It’s not like it is one body tackling all 745 disputes one by one.” – Additional reporting by Thomas Kean, translation by Zar Zar Soe

Network to tackle slow community forestry development
ZAW WINN A PLAN to give forests back to local residents took another step forward this week as environmentalists announced that a network for nationallevel community forestry would be formed by the end of this year. U Zaw Win Myint, director of the Ministry of Environmental Conservation and Forestry’s Forest Research Institute, said the plan, drawn up by government officials, NGOs and others, will soon be submitted to the environment minister for approval. The network’s developed has been prompted by Myanmar’s lack of progress on a 30-year master plan to establish 2.27 million acres of community forest by 2030. Only 4 percent of the community forests, or 100,000 acres, have been set up as of this year, said U Maung Maung Than, country program coordinator of the forestry organisation RECOFTC (Myanmar). “It won’t be easy to complete the remaining 96pc in the next 17 years,” he said. The reason for the slow pace is the complexity of the process, he said, which entails dealing with a number of different government departments as well as private companies that have been granted land tenure. “People are very reluctant to deal with the officials,” he said. To resolve this, RECOFTC and other members of the network will work with communities and officials to facilitate the establishment of community forests. “Forests are to be used, not destroyed. Forestry helps people to love the forest and to use it properly,” he said. U Win Maung, project manager of Coastal Livelihood Environmental Assets Restoration in Rakhine, or CLEARR, said the network would also try to help communities make better use of their forests. The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation defines community forestry as “a situation which intimately involves local people in forestry activities … ranging from woodlots in areas short of wood through the growing of trees at the farm level to provide cash crops and the processing of forest products at the household, artisan or small industry level to generate income, to the activities of forest dwelling communities”. Most of Myanmar’s community forests are in Shan and Rakhine states and Magwe and Mandalay regions, and were established with support from the UN Development Programme. “However, the rate of community forest handover has been far lower than that needed to meet the 30-year target,” said U Zaw Win Myint. “For this we would need to hand over 50,000 acres a year, a rate almost 10 times higher [than in the first 13 years of the project].”

News 21

Reporter to challenge journal over sacking
WA LONE A REPORTER who was fired in August because of a dispute over an article has threatened legal action against the publication’s management. Ko Thar Moe Kyi Aung, who previously worked for Unity journal, said he will take legal action unless all money owed to him is paid. He also wants an apology from the editors and owners of the paper, who in early August took out several paid advertisements to apologise to the subject of the article: a businessman named U Eik Lin, who runs a gem shop and the Nan Htike Taw Win restaurant chain. Ko Thar Moe Kyi Aung’s former boss used the ads to label him “an irresponsible person” and he says an apology is needed to salvage his reputation. The dispute focuses on an article written by Ko Thar Moe Kyi Aung in which a prominent activist, Ko Htin Kyaw, accused U Eik Lin of paying someone to commit a crime on his behalf. Ko Htin Kyaw told the reporter he filed a complaint with the police in reference to the issue but the police did not respond. The activist was quoted as saying that “U Eik Lin will be sent to the nearest police station, [his hands] tied by rope, in accordance with ... the law”. Ko Thar Moe Kyi Aung said the report was balanced, as he included comments from a man named U Nay Win Oo, who was speaking on behalf of U Eik Lin. take responsibility for everything it prints. “Every person in charge has a responsibility for the news and I am the most responsible person. Secondly, the editors in charge and the reporter are responsible.” Publisher U Saw Than Myint told The Myanmar Times that the company has not yet decided whether to pay Ko Thar Moe Kyi Aung. “I didn’t recruit him, I don’t know him – I had never heard his name either [until the dispute occurred],” said U Saw Than Myint. “When I asked him to show his contract with us, he said he didn’t have it so his employment is not official ... We will consider whether to pay him.” However, he said Ko Thar Moe Kyi Aung was fired not over the article but because he did not fit into the newsroom. He wrote about crime rather than the journal’s main focus, which is ethnic issues. U Eik Lin’s representative, U Nay Win Oo, confirmed last week that the headline, rather than the article, prompted the complaint. “It could be true the news contained comments from both sides but the headline also has to be balanced,” he said, adding that the presentation of the article had caused serious misunderstandings. “We announced in the state newspapers that the journal has explained itself to us. Unity came and apologised ... If they didn’t we would have sued them.” The Interim Press Council’s complaints committee declined to comment on the case last week.

Ko Thar Moe Kyi Aung speaks at a press conference in Yangon. Photo: Wa Lone

A tourist cycles in front of Thatbyinnu Pagoda in Bagan. Photo: AFP

Racing through history: Bagan to host marathon
WA LONE WHILE the usual recommendation for footwear in Bagan is sandals – the easier to go barefoot while visiting the pagodas – next month a few hundred people will be lacing up their running shoes very carefully. After all, there’s no time to stop and explore when you’re running a marathon. After the finish line, though, Bagan offers plenty of attractions that will to let you catch your breath – and then take it away again. That’s why the government, as part of a pre-SEA Games tourism promotion, has granted a permit for Myanmar’s most famous ancient city and national heritage site to play host to what organisers call the latest in their “Adventure Marathon” series: the Bagan Temple Marathon, to be held November 2. Participants will include up to 300 runners from Europe, North America and Asia, as well as up to 50 from Myanmar. About 200 foreign runners are already registered, according to U Thet Lwin Toe, director of Myanmar Voyages International Tourism. The travel company is acting as local partner for Danish company Albatros Travel, which has organised marathons in England, the US, Germany and Australia. Its Adventure Marathon series consists of four races, including one along the Great Wall, another through the African savannah and an event across the ice sheets of Greenland. The day will provide plenty of opportunities for runners of all levels, with both full and shortened marathons planned. Dotted along the course will be 12 supply camps, ambulances and medical teams, and also referees from Denmark. U Thet Lwin Toe said the companies will take responsibility for ensuring the pagodas and environment are not damaged in any way by the event. All signs and plastic will be removed as soon as the races are complete, and there will also be an educational component to the day, he added. “We plan to offer educational training about saving the environment, public health and building the economy of tourism areas.” Runners in the Bagan Temple Marathon will compete for prizes as well as a chance to qualify for the Great Wall Marathon, to be held in China on May 17, 2014.

It was the headline – a repeat of Ko Htin Kyaw’s quote about taking U Eik Lin to the police station – that got him fired. Ko Thar Moe Kyi Aung said the journal’s owners should take responsibility rather than using him as a scapegoat. “I was not solely responsible for this news – the chief executive officer is also responsible.” He plans to submit a complaint to the Interim Press Council if the journal does not accede to his demands. Unity CEO U Tint San said last week he is unrepentant about firing Ko Thar Moe Kyi Aung and taking out the advertisements blaming him for the dispute. “We will not apologise for what we did,” U Tint San said. He said the newspaper has to

Cruise company launches new vessel
EI EI THU IRRAWADDY Princess River Cruise has launched a new vessel to cope with growing demand from tourists for river journeys along Myanmar’s waterways. Managing director Daw Tint Tint Lwin said the new vessel, Princess Royal, is needed because the company’s two other boats are almost fully booked through to 2016. She said the vessel, which can carry 16 people, will ply the Ayeyarwady River between Bagan, Mandalay and Bhamo in southern Kachin State. The company took into account suggestions from passengers on its other vessels, the 40-berth RV Yandabo and 22-room Irrawaddy Princess II, when designing the new boat. “The other two boats don’t have many river view cabins and that was identified as a weak point. We considered this when designing the new boat, which we think is the best and most beautiful of the three,” she said. But Daw Tint Tint Lwin said she believed the company’s strength was its customer service. “We can upgrade the facilities and decoration on the boat but as a company you can’t just buy quality service,” she said. “I use my experience as a tour guide for this. For example, there are villages that are not included on the program of the trip but we send clients to them to see traditional entertainment. We believe you won’t find that elsewhere.”

News 25

Poverty driving farmers to opium: official
AUNG KYAW MIN INCREASING poppy cultivation is a reflection of the limited livelihood options open to farmers in border areas, a highranking member of the Myanmar police force said this week. Police Major Zaw Win told reporters at a meeting of the ASEAN Senior Officials on Drug Matters (ASOD) in Yangon that poor farmers are the “victims” of poppy cultivation, and cultivation will only decline again when they have better ways to make money. Myanmar’s strategy for eradicating poppy is two-fold: destroying poppy fields and working to help farmers find more sustainable – and legal – livelihoods. But Pol Maj Zaw Win said eradication “will not have an effect” without alternative economic opportunities. “We need to reform the poppy cultivator’s livelihoods to develop sustainable [alternatives],” Pol Maj Zaw Win said. “Poppy cultivation will end if [the farmers’] businesses progress and we can implement sustainable economic development for their futures.” Nevertheless, official figures show the government destroyed three times as many acres of poppy in 2012 than the previous year – 23,717 hectares versus 7058 hectares. So far this year more than 12,257 hectares have been destroyed, Pol Maj Zaw Win added. Poppy cultivation increased 17 percent in Myanmar in 2012, with a total of 51,000 hectares (126,023 acres), up from 43,000 hectares (106,255 acres) in 2011. Myanmar is the largest poppy cultivator in Southeast Asia and second only behind Afghanistan worldwide, United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime (UNODC) statistics show. Pol Maj Zaw Win said combating illicit drugs “is an uphill battle, but one that we must never give up fighting”. The drug problem, he said, continues to constitute a serious threat to public health, as well as to security and safety. While poppy cultivation remains a problem, the smuggling of chemical drugs, or amphetamine-type stimulants (ATS), such as Ecstasy and methamphetamine, poses a greater threat to Myanmar than ever. “A new challenge is the production, trafficking and abuse of ATS,” Pol Maj Zaw Win said. “The increase in the trafficking of cold tablets containing pseudoephedrine is at a six-year high and most of the trafficking is from the Indian border.” Pol Maj Zaw Win made his remarks at the beginning of the 34th ASOD meeting in Yangon on September 24. ASOD is monitoring the progress of its 2009-2015 work plan for Myanmar with the goal of achieving a “drug-free” ASEAN by 2015.

SN Goenka, a son of Myanmar
In India and elsewhere, Vipassana meditation was dying out until Mandalay-born SN Goenka revived and expanded it


THE leading teacher of Vipassana, or insight, meditation passed away on September 29 in Mumbai, India, at the age of 90. Credited with bringing the traditionally monastic practice of meditation to the layperson – and in later years to the West – through his teachings and writings, Satya Narayan Goenka founded 172 Vipassana meditation centres in countries all over the world, as well as the Global Vipassana Pagoda in Mumbai. Better known as SN Goenka or, to generations of students in Myanmar, Sayagyi, he passed away from natural causes at his home. A funeral was held October 1. Born in 1924 in Mandalay, he initially took up a career in business. He suffered serious headaches until he started practising meditation under the guidance of teacher U Ba Khin in

1955. Vipassana focuses on developing mindfulness by paying attention to the sensations of body and mind, observing them as they arise and noting their transitory nature as they pass. It is through this meditation that practitioners believe insight into the universe is attained. In 1969 he moved to India to pay respect to his parents, who were of Indian descent. While there, with the blessing of U Ba Khin, he began giving 10-day meditation courses to his parents and relatives, then to the general public. He opened his first meditation centre at Igatpuri, India, in 1976 and then began travelling the world and opening more centres. He returned to Myanmar in 1991 and taught Vipassanna in Yangon’s Daw Dhammathi nunnery, in North Okkalapa township. In 1993 he opened Dhamma Joti International Vipassana Meditation Centre in Bahan township. Today there are 20 meditation centres in Myanmar, in Yangon, Hlegu, Bago, Maubin, Mawlamyinegyun, Mandalay, Mogok, Pyin Oo Lwin, Monywa and Thanbyuzayat. He received awards from both the Indian and Myanmar governments in recognition of his work.

SN Goenka, who died on September 29. Photo: Vipassana Research Institute

Dhamma Joti International Vipassana Meditation Centre member U Thein Tun told The Myanmar Times that students of dhamma, or Buddhist teaching, gathered on September 30 to meditate together and offer alms to monks as a way of paying tribute to the influential teacher’s memory. “Sayagyi is a son of Mandalay. He

always felt proud to be born here, the country where he learned about Vipassana meditation. He always said India owed Myanmar for sustaining pure dhamma, and the global pagoda [in Mumbai] is one of his ways of showing respect and gratitude [to the tradition],” U Thein Tun said. SN Goenka planned the Global Vipassana Pagoda in honour of U Ba Khin, who had preserved the Vipassana meditation method in Myanmar. While it originated in India, it had long disappeared on the subcontinent. Built on 11 acres in Mumbai at a cost of about US$30 million, the pagoda is about 80 percent complete. It is modelled after Shwedagon Pagoda but will be built slightly shorter than the 98-metre (321-foot) Yangon landmark out of respect for the original. U Thein Tun said he hoped all those who benefit from Vipassana teachings would continue SN Goenka’s work by helping others to learn about dhamma. “He is no more but he started the wheel of dhamma,” he said. “If we appreciate and respect his gratitude, we all need to keep the wheel going.”

Ten-year plan to ‘transform’ status of women
SHWE YEE SAW MYINT THE government has adopted a 10year action plan to raise the status of women, launching the National Strategic Plan for the Advancement of Women, or NSPAW, in Nay Pyi Taw on October 3. Minister for Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement Daw Mya Mya Ohn Khin – the government’s only female minister – said at the launch ceremony that she wanted the plan to “transform” Myanmar society. “It is my aspiration that this National Strategic Plan for the Advancement of Women will contribute to transforming our society so that all women, men, girls and boys live as equal and valued members,” she said. The plan targets the key areas that affect women’s lives and indicates practical ways to address the issues that Myanmar women are experiencing. Developed by the Ministry of Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement over the past three years, its 12 priority areas are based on the Beijing Platform for Action and the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women, or CEDAW, which Myanmar signed in 1997. The areas cover livelihoods, education, health, violence, the economy, human rights and more. The four strategies to implement these areas are research, surveys and situation analyses; awareness raising; implementation; and budget and policy-making. Daw May Sabay Phyu, senior coordinator of Gender Equality Networks, said there were excellent initiatives taking place to prevent violence against women, improve their livelihoods and stop trafficking. More remains to be done, however, including reforming the constitution. The National Strategic Plan for the Advancement of Women will be implemented by government agencies, NGOs, UN agencies and civil society groups.

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Govt assessing property below market value

MYANMAR officials have deliberately fixed Yangon property assessment values below market prices as a strategy to encourage tax payment, according to U Kyaw Kyaw, director of the Ministry of Finance’s Regional Revenue Department. Yangon’s property market saw sales volumes drop off following government comments in August suggesting efforts to curb price increases were in the works, but commentators said the market has returned to normal following the September unveiling of the assessment values. A Yangon-wide assessment of property values was finished last month with the aim of standardising values for transfer tax on property sales that can range as high as 37 percent if the buyer cannot show a legitimate source for their capital. Until the government assessment was conducted there was little recourse for the tax collectors if a buyer claimed a lower value on the property in an effort to avoid paying tax. The government based assessments on current property values, but with Yangon land and house prices increasing quickly some areas were outdated before the whole assessment was complete, said U Kyaw Kyaw. Values had also been deliberately fixed below market prices to make the changes more palatable to

would-be tax payers, U Kyaw Kyaw said. “People would face difficulties if taxes increased by a huge amount on top of rising property prices,” he said. Many property buyers already stretched their budgets to own houses and land, and too sharp a tax increase would be unfair, he continued. “We hope we have fixed the amounts fairly so everyone can afford to pay their taxes,” he said. Ko Min Min Soe, senior agent of Mya Pan Thakin real estate agency, said the assessment values are a fair level that will encourage tax payments. He pointed to examples such as Pyay Road, where market prices are about K800,000 to K1 million per square foot at present, but the government assessment fixed values at K275,000. “The assessment values are at a fair standard for customers as the prices are quite different from market prices,” he said. Daw Moh Moh Aung, general secretary of Myanmar Real Estate Service Association, echoed calls that the assessments had been fairly priced, adding the government stands to benefit from additional revenue generated from the transaction taxes. “It is good for the government to receive more tax revenue than in the past, but it is also important that it uses tax revenues correctly for the public good,” she said. The new government-created assessment values on October 1 officially replaced the previous system of buyers declaring the property value in Yangon.

Modern retail outlets are growing, but also facing reluctance from locals, who prefer to shop at traditional markets. Photo: Ko Taik

Retail sector needs better loans to modernise, say industry sources
MYAT NYEIN AYE RETAIL shops and supermarkets are growing in popularity, but owners of traditional shops need capital to modernise, retailers said last week. “We can say that modern retail shops are becoming more common in Myanmar, even though they are still not that many in number,” said Daw Wai Thit Lwin, managing director of abc Convenience Stores, which has about 50 shops across Yangon Region. “It’s difficult to open small supermarkets because we cannot get affordable loans from the banks,” she added. It also takes time for people to change their shopping habits – buying goods from traditional street markets – but said supermarkets and minimarts have a bright future, she said. “Most of supermarkets and retail markets in Myanmar can only be found in the big cities, and there are many more traditional markets and shops.” A spokesperson for the Myanmar Retailers Association said modern supermarkets and convenience stores occupy less than 10 percent of the national retail market. U Aung Htun Thet, a presidential economic advisor, said advances in the retail field will increase with the country’s development. “It depends on the country. If Myanmar develops then modern supermarkets and convenience stores will better match the country,” he said. “However, traditional markets will never disappear.” Daw Wai Thit Lwin said the scarcity of affordable finance will stop many owners of traditional shops and markets from modernising their outlets. “If the government gave loans at lower interest rates, then traditional retailers would be able to upgrade their shops, which will let them compete with foreign companies in coming years, she told the Myanmar Times. “But if they cannot compete in the future then these owners will feel aggrieved.” She added that many traditional shop owners are experienced businesspeople who recognise they cannot compete against foreign heavyweights. “We have to worry for the future of traditional shops against big foreign competitors because these shops might disappear in future, which is not good for customers.” Daw Sandar Khin, a spokesperson for Gamon Pwint shopping malls, said supermarkets and convenience stores are mushrooming across Yangon and in other large cities. “We have seen the industry develop a lot in the past two years,” she said. “People are getting used to shopping at supermarkets and convenience stores. But there is still a lot of room for growth.”

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K1320 K300 K780 K31.50 K970

Ford launches as govt revamps import rules
JEREMY MULLINS AYE NYEIN WIN The showroom distribution system will work in tandem with private citizen’s right to import one new vehicle each during their lifetime, he said. US-based Ford Motors will distribute vehicles through Myanmar-based Capital Automotive, a subsidiary of Capital Diamond Star Group, and in partnership with emerging markets firm RMA Group. Capital Diamond Star owner, U Ko Ko Gyi, said the firm plans to expand its Ford sales across the country as business grows. Edwin Vanderbruggen, partner at law firm VDB Loi, said there is a something of a “gold rush” on for distributors looking to set up in Myanmar. “The importation and distribution of new cars until now has been based a bit on unpredictable practices – even a bit chaotic,” he said. The Ministry of Commerce has worked to come up with an improved basis for new imports with its notice, he said, adding the notice is an excellent first step. However, a few points in the notice await some clarification, Mr Vanderbruggen said. A company with a showroom licensed to import new cars must be a local firm under Myanmar’s current policy, but often firms with the experience to run a service centre, which is now a requirement to import new vehicles, are foreign companies. U Aung Thet Lwin, head of sales and marketing for Jardines Cycle and Carriage – the Myanmar distributor of Mercedes – said he supports the

FORD Motors launched its Yangon showroom last week on the heels of Ministry of Commerce guidelines written to provide guidance for companies looking to import new cars to the country. Industry observers said they welcomed the notice, which was obtained by The Myanmar Times last week, from the ministry’s Directorate of Trade outlining parameters for distributors to sell new cars in Myanmar though some added it is at most a first step and further clarification is required. Ford became one of the first among other global car makers to successfully plant their flag in Myanmar. Others including Nissan, Mazda, Mercedes Benz and Hyundai are currently expanding their presence in the country. The ministry’s notice on “Procedures for Importing, Selling and Distributing Brand New Cars through a Showroom System” states that new car imports are now limited to distributors with an agreement directly with the manufacturer, and outlines conditions, including a maximum inventory of 100 vehicles at a time, that the distributor must provide warranties and a service centre, and must hold a license for a showroom. Ministry of Commerce director of the Directorate of Trade, U Than Aung Kyaw, said some 220,000 new and used vehicles have been imported to Myanmar since reforms in the sector began in September 2011, adding the ministry notice governing new vehicle distribution are based on the “3S principles” – sales, service, and spare parts.

A model shows off vehicles during the launch of the US auto giant’s first dealership in Yangon. Photo: Boothee

The number of Ford vehicles sold in Myanmar since July, 2013.


regulations laid out by the Ministry of Commerce. “We see it as a chance for international brands to set up and do business here, but not every [distributor] will meet the requirements,” he said. He said in practice foreign companies are beginning to distribute certain finished products in Myanmar ahead of the ASEAN Free Trade Area in 2015, when the barrier on distributing finished products is slated for removal. He added that some distributors have indirect arrangements with the manufacturer through intermediaries, which may cause problems as this is not specifically allowed for under the new rules, but added Jardines deals directly with Mercedes.

Distributors with an extensive sub-dealer network may face challenges, as U Than Aung Kyaw told The Myanmar Times, because the 100 vehicle limit is not for each subdealer but for the distributor. In that case, a distributor with 15 domestic sub-dealers would only have a handful of cars on hand at each location. However, U Khin Tun, managing director of Ford distributor Capital Automotive, said the firm supports the government rules as they provide protection for consumers, who often do not have experience purchasing new vehicles. “It has been possible to order from the factory, but local customers from Myanmar aren’t familiar with this and

often they want to visit a showroom and see the cars in person,” he said. He highlighted provisions allowing for consignment-based imports as a step which would increase consumers’ choice in Myanmar. Ford is finding success early on the Myanmar market, having sold about 100 vehicles since its soft launch two months ago, said the firm’s Asia Pacific emerging markets manager David Westerman. Among its rotation of vehicle models Ford will offer in Myanmar are the popular Ranger, Explorer and Taurus. They will not be inexpensive however, with an imported Ford Explorer costing about $105,000. The Thai-made Ford Single Cab Ranger has a far cheaper price tag at just $22,000.

Possible first wind farm India’s Tata to develop coal Korean firm power plant in Pathein building locations announced sheet metal factory
AUNG SHIN YANGON and Ayeyarwady regions, as well as Rakhine State, may be among the country’s first locations to receive windmill-generated electricity after power producers from China and Thailand announced their continued progress to develop wind farms, officials said. China’s Three Gorges Co and Gunkul Engineering Public Co of Thailand each signed a pair of agreements with the government dating from 2011 that would launch wind power projects in nine locations in Myanmar, U Khin Maung Win, deputy director general of Electric Power under the Ministry of Electric Power, told The Myanmar Times. He said Three Gorges Co is now surveying in Chin and Rakhine states as well as Ayeyarwady and Yangon regions, while Gunkul Engineering is assessing the feasibility of wind power in Mon, Kayin, Shan and Kayah states and Tanintharyi Region. “They are surveying based on worldwide and regional weather patterns,” he said, adding that the whole process could take a year, but that construction could begin as soon as it is finished. “They have to study wind speeds 24 hours a day and throughout the year continuously.” Gunkul Engineering estimated that it would build wind power plants capable of generating 2930 megawatts, while Three Gorges Co aims to have a capacity of 1102MW at its plants, said U Khin Maung Win. “These figures are just estimates according to an initial study. It will take at least two years to know the actual capacity in those regions,” he said. Gunkul has stated that it hopes to have farms operational by 2015 before reaching maximum capacity by 2018. Although it is too early to tell how much investment it would take to meet their goals, the projects will not come cheap. Construction of one 150-metre-high wind turbine would cost about US$1 million to install, according to earlier government estimates. Only 30 percent of Myanmar’s population has access to electricity. AUNG SHIN INDIAN power producer Tata Power has reached an agreement with the government to build a new coal-fired plant in Ayeyarwady Region, officials said. Deputy minister for electric power U Aung Than Oo told The Myanmar Times that the two sides had agreed in April in general terms on a contract to build at least one 660-megawatt plant in Nganyoutkaung, a sub-township of Pathein. “A feasibility study has already begun,” he said. “I cannot say when it will be finished or how much investment it will require. That will be agreed on next.” Although details are unclear, Tata has said it could build two 660-mw coal-fired plants in Myanmar that would become operational before 2020. The deal comes after the firm won a US$1.8 billion contract in June to build two 660-mw thermal power plants in Vietnam. U Ko Ko Naing, a deputy chief engineer for Ayeyarwady Region, said that the first phase would probably include two turbines capable of generating 330 mw each. “I think we will only get 500 megawatts of electricity from those turbines at first,” he said. “The power plant will be developed with clean coal technology, which has less of an environmental impact.” When operational, the plant would consume coal imported from Indonesia through Pathein’s planned $5.5 billion deep-sea port, he said. Sunil Seth, country representative for Tata Power in Myanmar, said the feasibility study being conducted near the Nganyoutkaung seaport would take between six and eight months to complete. HTAR HTAR KHIN SOUTH Korea’s Posco C&C began work on its US$14 million sheet metal factory in Yangon’s Mingaladon township last week. The factory is the first Myanmar investment for the Korean conglomerate, aiming to first produce sheeting by the end of October 2014 and finalise its product quality by 2015. Posco C&C vice president Choi Sung-Hwan said the factory, 70 percent owned by Posco and the remainder by military-run Myanmar Economic Co, will produce sheeting under the ‘Green Star’ brand. “Our plan is to build a factory for manufacturing quality coloured sheets and distributing them locally, as well as exporting,” he said. He added some of the company’s production could be used in home appliances as well.

The number of megawatts each coalfired plant can produce.


28 Business


The Fine Print
WINT THANDAR OO TIN SEIN WHILE Myanmar’s economy is still largely dependent on agriculture, the laws of Myanmar actually do provide a broad framework for diverse use of land and varying terms for permitted land use, in each case. While there are other permitted land uses in Myanmar, this article will focus on only three types of land use and their varying terms in the context of local-foreign joint ventures as permitted under the new Foreign Investment Law, in force since November 2012.  Agriculture Under the Foreign Investment Rules, foreigners may be permitted

Legal & tax insight
ground nuts, beans and pulses) under the Farmland Law, in force since August 2012. Clarification in the law needs to be provided as to the precise types of agricultural business which can be conducted by Myanmar citizens only. Real estate development In relation to the development of real estate, the foreign investor will be required to enter into a joint venture with Myanmar citizens, as regards most types of developments, save for the development of hotels with ratings of three stars and above and the development of commercial buildings on a build, operate and transfer basis, with the approval of the landowner, the Ministry of Construction and the Myanmar Investment Commission. With the prior permission of the landowner and that of the Myanmar Investment Commission, the foreign investor may be allowed to lease land in Myanmar up to an initial term of 50 years with two consecutive term extensions of 10 years each, depending on the volume of investment and compliance with Myanmar laws and regulations. Warehousing services In relation to the provision of warehousing services or logistics, foreigners are only permitted to conduct large-scale warehousing activities in joint venture with Myanmar citizens under the Foreign Investment Law. At this juncture, clarification in the law needs to be provided as regards the meaning of “largescale”. Similar to leases of land for real estate development, the joint venture company may be allowed to lease land for up to an initial term of 50 years with two consecutive term extensions of 10 years each, depending on the volume of investment for the purposes of conducting warehousing services activities, with the prior permission of the landowner and the Myanmar Investment Commission. At the end of the day, the Myanmar Investment Commission has broad discretion to determine and prescribe the category of investment, the amount of investment required and the term of permitted land use. On the other hand, the investor shall be required to abide by all the terms and conditions upon which the investment permit has been granted.
Wint Thandar Oo is a partner and Tin Sein a senior associate with Polastri Wint & Partners Legal & Tax Advisors.

Different types of land use and their permitted terms
to conduct agricultural business on a commercial scale on vacant, fallow and virgin land in joint venture with Myanmar citizens for an initial term of up to 30 years, with extensions to be permitted based on the amount of investment. The right to lease here is subject to the approval of the Central Committee for the Management of Vacant, Fallow and Virgin Land, formed under the Vacant, Fallow and Virgin Land Management Law, in force since March 2012. Industrial crops such as rubber, sugar cane, palm oil and jatropha curcas are usually grown on vacant, fallow and virgin land in Myanmar. As for the use of farmland, the foreign investor is only allowed to carry out contract farming in joint venture with Myanmar citizens entitled to use the farmland for the cultivation of seasonal crops (for example, corn,


London’s Lord Mayor makes visit to Myanmar
ROGER GIFFORD I AM delighted to be the first Lord Mayor of the City of London to have the opportunity to visit this beautiful country, which I last visited in 1977. This is an important opportunity for British business and investors to engage more deeply with their counterparts as we help to support Myanmar’s economic development. A large part of my role as the elected Lord Mayor of the City of London involves travelling overseas to engage in commercial diplomacy with some of Britain’s most important global trading partners. This year I have visited 30 countries, spending more than 100 days abroad building relationships between London and its business counterparts overseas. It is my hope that this visit will enable me to understand better the opportunities for British business in this region, and the needs of the local community. As the economy liberalises, there will be many more opportunities for economic engagement with European countries. I would urge local companies to look to the City of London as their partner of choice. London is filled with expertise in many other areas as well. We have a huge amount of expertise in all aspects of construction and infrastructure financing, and as last summer’s Olympic and Paralympic Games showed, we have the expertise and experience to deliver projects on time and on budget. As you undertake ambitious building projects in your major cities, the City of London can provide the expertise needed to ensure projects achieve both quality and value for money. Legal and professional services, including maritime services, are another area where our two countries can work together to support economic growth, and I am encouraged by firms such as Allen & Overy, who have been delivering training across the government on the enactment of privatisation legislation. This is exactly the kind of collaboration we must encourage to benefit both our countries. Greater opportunities for engagement in this region are an important priority for the UK’s business community. I believe this visit is a great opportunity to engage further with the local community to improve bilateral economic opportunities for businesses in all sectors.
Roger Gifford is Lord Mayor of London.

MOU for Thilawa project set for October
AYE THIDAR KYAW A SECOND memorandum of understanding regarding cooperation in the development of the Thilawa Special Economic Zone is expected to be signed in mid-October, Deputy Minister for National Planning and Economic Development U Set Aung said last week. “We are planning to give compensation to the residents, split into 13 categories, for people who have lost their land for this project,” U Set Aung said October 2 on Myanmar National TV. The agreement will be the second MOU between the nine Myanmar public companies – including sanctioned entity Dagon International – and the three Japanese firms backing the project, Mitsubishi, Sumitomo and Marubeni, he said. The first agreement was signed when Japan’s prime minister visited Myanmar in late May. U Set Aung said the agreement covers an initial investment of about US$200 million, which will be used to lay the foundations, with a tentative completion date of 2013. It is hoped that the founding companies will then be able to build plants and factories in 2014 and commence operations in 2015. The zone is expected to be finished by the end of 2016. Ms Ikeda Ami, media spokesperson for Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) said the Yangon Region government has taken very seriously the issue of compensating and resettling people who have lost their land and houses for the project. “JICA has sent experts to support this [project] in an appropriate way based on international standard guidelines for environmental and social considerations,” she said.


Fire takes froth off Tesla shares
A FIRE in a Tesla luxury sedan sent its shares sinking this week, leaving analysts debating whether the electric car maker’s promise justified a 400 percent share price run-up. The widely seen video showed a Model S, Tesla’s US$75,000 marquee model, up in flames on a street near Seattle, Washington. According to reports the driver said he believed he had hit a piece of metal and pulled off the highway, only to see the car erupt in flames minutes later. Tesla said that the piece of metal likely caused extensive damage to the car in the battery area, just under the passenger section. No one was injured, but the video revived worries that the spreading use of lithium-ion batteries poses dangers, as with those that forced the grounding of the worldwide fleet of Boeing 787s this year. And it challenged Tesla, which has captured huge attention and praise for its all-electric sports and luxury cars, to demonstrate that it is, as many think, the future of an auto industry still only hesitantly moving into hybrid and electric vehicles. Tesla shares had run up 470pc from January to a record US$194.50 on September 30, before the video came out Tuesday and sent them tumbling to around $173. A slight rebound on October 4 pushed them back up to $179, still up 428pc since the year began. That climb has put Tesla among the world’s most valuable car companies despite expectations it will sell around 21,000 autos this year. The company’s market value on October 4 was more than $21 billion, nearly one-third of Ford’s, which sold 185,000 cars in September alone. That also put it at twice the market value of Italy’s huge Fiat, whose US unit Chrysler delivered 143,000 cars last month. Investors believe Tesla, founded by inventor Elon Musk, has stolen a great march on the industry for the vehicle of the future, its technology likely to be at the centre of the industry in several years. The Model S earned top test results from the influential Consumer Reports, top safety ratings from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and was dubbed “Car of the Year” by numerous publications. – AFP

Myanmar, Japan firms team up to build rice plants
The government has approved a joint venture between Japan’s Mitsui & Co and Myanmar Agribusiness Public Corporation (MAPCO) to manufacture rice and rice products in Myanmar, officials said. The new company, called Myanmar Rice Industry Co Ltd, will spend up to US$100 million to build four rice manufacturing plants, two of which will be in Twantay and Yangon Region, said president of the Myanmar Rice Federation and MAPCO U Chit Khaing. – Su Phyo Win

Business 29

US shifts its focus to national debt limit
ment programs, tax reform and the federal debt limit. “I think we’re at a point where we need a broader solution here to not only the [temporary funding measure] but also the debt limit,” said Representative Dave Camp, Representative chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee. “It’s right around the corner. I think they’re both going to have to get addressed.” House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy of California agreed. “The president should start negotiating,” he said. “I’d like to just get one agreement” to reopen the government and raise the debt limit “and be done with it”. Mr Obama and Senate Democrats have so far refused to negotiate over either issue, saying they have already agreed to locking in lower funding levels favored by the GOP and that paying the nation’s bills — which raising the debt ceiling would do — is non-negotiable. Broader budget issues can be discussed after the government reopens and the debt limit is lifted, they said. “Once we reopen government, I propose a House-Senate joint conference to work out the nation’s longterm fiscal challenges,” Mr Reid said. “Both sides have priorities, but we want to move forward.” – The Washington Post

THE fight over the government shutdown quickly moved last week to a bigger showdown over raising the nation’s debt ceiling, as the first White House talks to solve the fiscal standoff failed to make any progress toward a deal. President Barack Obama and business leaders warned that the clash has raised the chances of a historic default on the national debt, which would occur if the US Congress does not agree to raise the $16.7 trillion debt limit later this month and could cause a new recession. Mr Obama said investors should take more seriously the threat of a potential default, which global markets have brushed off for months as Washington’s usual partisan theatrics. “This time, I think Wall Street should be concerned,” Mr Obama said on CNBC. “When you have a situation in which a faction is willing to default on US obligations, then we are in trouble.” On Capitol Hill, senior Republicans began to suggest that a broad agreement to overhaul entitlements and the tax code could be used as a resolution to both the shutdown and the debt-limit dispute. But Democrats view that approach as hostage-taking and say Congress must reopen the government and authorise additional borrowing before serious negotiations can occur. At the White House, Mr Obama joined the Republican and Democratic leaders of Congress in a oneand-a-half-hour-long meeting that Republican Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky called “cordial but unproductive”. Leaders of both parties said afterward that Republican demands to defund or delay Obama’s signature healthcare law, which helped lead to this week’s shutdown, remain a critical obstacle to any agreement. US House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner said the president “reiterated tonight he will not negotiate”. “We’ve got divided government. Democrats control the Senate; Republicans control the House,” he said. “All we’re asking for here is a discussion and fairness for the American people under Obamacare.”

Despite the federal shutdown, a few tourists on Tuesday still came to Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington to look at the White House. Photo: The Washington Post

ing its debt. Last week, there was growing realisation on both sides of the aisle that

lawmakers will likely have to deal with resolving the debt ceiling issue at the same time as the government

shutdown. Some senior Republicans said they are ready to enter a more far-reaching discussion over entitle-

‘When you have a situation in which a faction is willing to default on US obligations, then we are in trouble.’
Barack Obama US President

But Senate Majority leader Harry Reid said the president was unbending, calling him “strong, strong, strong”. He added, “One thing we made very clear in that meeting: We are locked in tight on Obamacare.” The back-and-forth on October 3 came on the second day of a partial government shutdown that has furloughed 800,000 federal workers and appears likely to remain for an extended period of time. The next crucial deadline comes on October 17, the last day the US Treasury Department estimates that the federal government is certain to have enough money to pay all its bills. Investors have also been demanding higher interest rates for US Treasury bills in recent days, a sign of concern that the federal government could have trouble servic-

30 Business


Job watch

Ideal qualifications: • Myanmar nationals with LLM or more advanced law degree • minimum 5-year work experience in a law firm or government entities • foreign travel and education • sport(s) and/or civic activities • English to and from Myanmar translation competence • Above average English language skills Interested lawyers should email a letter and cv to Shortlisted applicants will be asked to provide evidence of qualifications.
Myanmar Health Sector Coordinating Committee Call for Sub-Recipient Proposal Concept Note forMyanmar component of the Regional Artemisinin Initiative (RAI) Grant The Myanmar Health Sector Coordinating Committee (M-HSCC) has successfully secured funding from the Global Fund under the New Funding Model for Mekong RAI for the period of 2014 to 2016. In support of the newly signed Malaria grants, the M-HSCC is seeking organizations to implement services and activities as follows: ▪ Active case detection, diagnosis and treatment ▪ Early and appropriate treatment using quality antimalarial ▪ Raising the community awareness on early diagnosis and quality treatment on malaria ▪ Increasing the use of long-lasting insecticidal nets (LLIN) The members of the review panel will review and rate applicants based on a set of criteria. These criteria and other documents can be viewed on the M-HSCC website: Alternatively the Secretariats of the TSG can be contacted directly for more information:Dr Krongthong Thimasarn, WHO Email: thimasarnk@SEARO.WHO.INT; krongtho95@ Tel: +95-1-650 405, 650 406, 650 416 Submission Deadline and Location One hard copy of the Concept Note will need to be submitted in the specified format, following the eligibility criteria. The Concept Note must be received in a sealed envelope by 4pm on 18 October 2013 at: Proposal Collection Desk M-HSCC Secretariat Office c/o UNAIDS, 137/1, Thanlwin Road, Yangon, Myanmar

South Africa’s Zuma laments ‘unacceptable’ inequality
PRESIDENT Jacob Zuma on October 3 lamented “unacceptable” levels of inequality still blighting South Africa, despite a decade of post-apartheid reforms. Mr Zuma said that while great strides had been made in growing the black middle class, the country still faced “unacceptable levels of poverty, inequality and unemployment”. “We [have] yet to see the growth of black industrialists, despite government’s aggressive focus on boosting the manufacturing sector,” Mr Zuma told delegates attending an economic empowerment summit. October 3 marked a decade since an empowerment law was introduced that gives preference to black people in business and the workplace. While the program has created a multiracial middle class, inequalities between the country’s black majority and white minority are still glaring, 20 years after the end of apartheid. Zuma said the state will continue to intervene to promote transformation to ensure the meaningful participation of black people in the economy. With an economy that struggles to reach the levels of growth seen elsewhere in Africa, South Africa is plagued by chronic unemployment, with official levels reaching more than 25 percent. Unofficial figures place unemployment at around 50pc and the country has earned the reputation of being one of the most unequal societies in the world. A study released in 2011 showed that black South Africans own only a 17pc share of the


Delegates attend the opening ceremony of the first national Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE) summit on October 3, 2013, in Midrand, South Africa. Photo: AFP

100 top companies listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, Africa’s biggest bourse. The government has set a target for blacks to hold 25pc of the locally owned shares by 2017. Mr Zuma said the development of small enterprises was key to job creation and skills development in the economy.

Challenges facing the economy, including rampant strikes and protests over poor service delivery by government, are creating social tensions. The International Monetary Fund warned South Africa last week to implement reforms to shore up the sluggish economy, which is vulnerable to external shocks. – AFP


Brazil economy in need of reforms
LATIN America’s economic behemoth, Brazil, is in dire need of structural reforms and reduced government bloat to fuel sustainable growth, analysts say. This, they add, will not happen overnight and will take massive political will. “Brazil’s problem is that it carries a heavy load: the State,” said economist Pedro Tuesta of the 4Cast consulting firm in Washington. “There needs to be a radical change in the role of the State. Prioritize the country’s infrastructure more than control the private sector,” he argued. On October 2, credit rating agency Moody’s lowered its outlook for Brazil’s sovereign debt from “positive” to only “stable”. “Key credit metrics are deteriorating, especially Brazil’s government debt-to-GDP and the investment-to-GDP ratios,” it said, warning that Brazil faces a protracted period of low growth. In 2010, the economy posted 7.5 percent GDP growth after contracting 0.2pc in the wake of the 2008 subprime crisis. In late 2009, influential British weekly The Economist, projecting a Brazilian economic rebound, posted a picture of Rio’s iconic Christ the Redeemer statue on its cover, taking off like a rocket. But two years later, the country grew a paltry 2.7pc and an anemic 0.9pc last year. This year the economy is projected to expand by only 2.5pc. The Economist recently portrayed the statue as a wayward rocket spiralling downwards and asked whether Brazil had blown it. But, in the wake of last June’s massive street protests against corruption and poor social services, President Dilma Rousseff, rejects criticism of the country’s economic performance. “We are the only major country with full employment. We have posted the third-best growth figures in the world during the second quarter. Whoever bets against Brazil will always lose,” she added. The world’s top producer of coffee, sugar and orange juice and one of the biggest producers of meat, soybeans and iron ore, Brazil has benefited from high commodity prices on world markets. Why the end to high growth? “This price increase was artificial, fueled by zero interest rates in the United States and the huge demand from China,” said economist Enrique Alvarez of New York-based IdeaGlobal. Brazil, now the world’s seventh largest economy, also boosted domestic demand. Its middle class expanded and improved its purchasing power amid a continuing low jobless rate. With its domestic currency, the real, appreciating against the dollar, Brazilians increasingly travelled and shopped abroad, a trend that is continuing although now the real is depreciating. Yet now the commodity price boom is over. And stimulus packages could be phased out at any time in major economies. Meanwhile strong domestic demand and a global drought are pushing local prices upward while inflation is approaching the upper limit of the official target set at 6.5pc. The Central Bank opted to hike its base rate to 9pc to rein in surging consumer prices, which impacted growth. Faced with chronically inadequate domestic infrastructure, Brazil is now trying to stimulate private investment to finance ports, highways and multi-million dollar oil projects by staterun energy giant Petrobras to tap the country’s huge deep-water oil reserves. “We see positive initiatives, infrastructure concessions .... But for the country to grow 2.5pc, we need structural reforms. We need to reduce the tax burden, have more competitive [interest] rates, huge investment in infrastructure,” Andre Gerdau, president of the steel group Gerdau, told the economic daily Valor. The government recently held two auctions for highway construction, but one did not attract any bidders. – AFP

PATH is an international nonprofit organization that transforms global health through innovation. Having just recently opened an office in Myanmar, PATH currently seeks qualified candidates looking for an opportunity to make a positive impact on the health of people in Myanmar. The followine available position, Country Manager, will be based in our Yangon office. The Country Manager (Tracking code: #5750) will be primarily responsible for ensuring high quality programmatic, administrative and financial management of all of PATH’s work in Myanmar; facilitating the start-up of country operations in a new office; and, overseeing all project teams. The successful candidate will also be expected to lead strategic interactions with PATH’s Headquarters in the United States and Europe, in-country partners, and provide mentoring to staff and teams as they join the organization. Knowledge, skills and experience required: Demonstrated project and staff management skills; expertise in handling complex partner relationships; ability to represent PATH effectively with government and other partners in Myanmar; knowledge of public health and health systems issues (particularly related to maternal and child health, nutrition and immunization); excellent written and spoken English skills. Applicant must have an advanced degree in public health, business, management, or related field plus a minimum of 10 years of relevant work experience; or 12 years of NGO experience with increasing responsibility; or an equivalent combination of education and experience. Multi-country experience highly desirable. To apply for the position of Country Manager (#5750), please visit the jobs section of the PATH website (www. and apply on-line. Applications for this position will not be accepted via email.

The United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) in Myanmar is inviting qualified candidates to apply for the following positions: Sr. Title and level Duty Station Position Deadline 1. Off-Farm Income Generation Officer (LICA 6) Yangon National 7-10-2013 2. Programme Officer (Contract Management) (LICA 6) Yangon National 7-10-2013 3. Team Assistant (Director’s Office) (LICA2) Yangon National 9-10-2013 4. Administrative Assistant (Transport Management) (LICA3) Yangon National 9-10-2013 5. Driver (LICA1) Yangon National 11-10-2013 6. Administrative Assistant (Facility Management) (LICA3) Yangon National 14-10-2013 7. Monitoring and Evaluation Officer (Data Management) (LICA7) Yangon National 15-10-2013 The benefit package for the above positions includes an attractive remuneration, 30 days annual leave and 10 holidays per year, medical insurance, learning and development opportunities and a challenging working environment with 200 national and international colleagues. For details please visit UNOPS website and click on the post you are interested in applying for. All applications must be made through UNOPS E-recruitment system. For Sr.5 applicants are kindly requested to submit by manual application (paper) to HR Unit, UNOPS Myanmar at No. 12(O), Pyithu Lane, 7 Mile, Mayangone Township, Yangon.

Samsung expects record Q3 profit of $9.4 billion
Samsung Electronics Co last week announced that it expected to post a record operating profit of 10.1 trillion won ($9.4 billion) in the third quarter of this year. The estimate was slightly higher than analyst predictions and represents a 25 percent increase from a revised operating profit of 8.06 trillion won a year earlier for the world’s top maker of smartphones, memory chips and flat-panel TVs. – AFP

Property Business 31

Yoma in landmark deal with Mitsubishi
JEREMY MULLINS SINGAPORE-LISTED Yoma Strategic Holdings signed a memorandum of understanding with Japan’s Mitsubishi Corporation and Mitsubishi Estate to invest in its Landmark property development in downtown Yangon. The project will see 2 million square feet of mixed used residential, commercial, retail and hospitality built on a 10acre property next to Bogyoke Market in a former railways site. Yoma chief executive officer Andrew Rickards said the company hopes the project will become the “focal point” of Yangon’s business district. “We believe the experience and expertise of Mitsubishi Corporation and Mitsubishi Estate in developing large scale mixed-use developments worldwide will help the project to achieve the highest global standards,” he was quoted as saying in a press release on October 2. The Landmark project involves


Cost of Mitsubishi’s possible mixed-use real estate development. demolishing the Grand Mee Ya Hta serviced apartments to make way for the development. The former Burma Railways Headquarters will also be transformed into a Peninsula Hotel by Yoma, though Mitsubishi will not be involved in this aspect of the project, the press release said. Company officials pegged the total cost at US$350 million in an interview with the Myanmar Times last year. Yoma is a Singapore-listed but Myanmar-focused firm, chaired by prominent entrepreneur Serge Pun.

Built for a king
This beautifully decorated home with wooden ceilings and floors has lots of space and is a steal for entrepreneurs with families, who also must entertain every now and then. Located on Phoe Sein Road in Tarmwe Township, this 1,000 square-foot compound is two stories and comes fully furnished with


white leather sofas and large beds. With three double-bedrooms in the upper floor and a large living room, there is also lots of space outside for gardening and parking. Wood is the name of the game in this house with a hand carved staircase and doorframes, a kitchen filled with lacquered cabinets and matching dining room table. – Ei Thae Thae Naing

Location Price Contact

: Phoe Sein Road, : $4000 (for rent) : Moe Myint Thaw

Tarmwe Township

Thar Real Estate and General Service Phone : 01-9669061

Resurrecting the Crystal Palace
A CHINESE investment firm last Thursday announced plans to resurrect London’s Crystal Palace, once the largest glass structure in the world. The planned £500 million (US$800 million) re-creation by the ZhongRong Group is on the same size and scale as Joseph Paxton’s original cast iron and plate glass masterpiece. The Crystal Palace was built in central London’s Hyde Park for the 1851 Great Exhibition of wonders from across the globe, but moved to a hilltop dominating south London in 1854. The building, a marvel of the Victorian age, burnt down in 1936, although the area is still known as Crystal Palace. The Italian-style terraces on which it stood are now empty and grassed over. The plans involve turning the site into a major new cultural destination and restoring the surrounding 180-acre (73-hectare) public park through landscaping, planting and new facilities. “London is renowned across the world for its history and culture and the former Crystal Palace is celebrated in China as a magnificent achievement,” said ZhongRong Group chairman Ni Zhaoxing. “This project is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to bring its spirit back to life by recreating the Crystal Palace and restoring the park to its former glory.” The park was the original home of the English Premier League football club Crystal Palace. It hosted 21 of football’s FA Cup finals and the short-lived London County Cricket Club, captained by WG Grace. The current stadium, which will be retained, is a traditional home of British athletics. The hilltop’s 718-foot (219-metre) high television transmitter, the tallest building in suburban London, will also remain. The new Crystal Palace would be around 164 feet (50 metres) high and 1640 feet (500 metres) long, and the developers promise the creation of about 2000 new jobs. London Mayor Boris Johnson will chair an advisory board to steer the project forward, although work is unlikely to start before 2015. “Paxton’s stunning Crystal Palace was a beacon of innovation in the 19th century, encapsulating a spirit of invention which was to shape London and the world for generations to come,” he said. – AFP

32 Business Property


Govt shutdown threaten housing recovery
THE US government shutdown immediately slows approval of thousands of mortgages. If it lasts more than a week, it threatens housing and the broader economic recovery. Congress forced the first partial government closure in 17 years after failing to pass a budget, meaning borrowers in the process of obtaining home loans could be delayed as lenders are blocked from verifying Social Security numbers and accessing IRS tax transcripts. The process may also lengthen the wait for borrowers seeking approval for mortgages backed by the Federal Housing Administration because its full-time staff is now less than a tenth of its normal size and the Department of Agriculture, which backs mortgages in rural areas, will not take on new business during the shutdown. “The last thing we need is anything that shakes the confidence in a softly recovering housing market,” David Stevens, chief executive officer of the Mortgage Bankers Association and former head of the FHA, said in a telephone interview. “If it’s a shortterm shutdown, it’s a story about these employees put out of work. If it’s long term, it’s a broader story about the adverse impact to the economic recovery.” The shutdown comes as construction and new housing sales are climbing back from the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression. Builders broke ground on residences at an annual pace of 891,000 in August, up from a low of 478,000 in April 2009 while still only about two-thirds of the last 20 years’ average rate, according to Commerce Department data compiled by Bloomberg. Home prices, which have climbed 21 percent since a post-recession low in March 2012, are still 21 pc below their June 2006 peak, according to the S&P/ Case-Shiller index of property values in 20 cities. The reductions were triggered after Congress failed to meet a budget deadline to keep the government open as Republicans sought to delay President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, triggering the October 1 furloughs for 800,000 employees. The impact will start “behind the scenes” and gradually move to the foreground if Congress doesn’t pass a budget, according to Bob Walters, chief economist at Quicken Loans Inc. The absence of federal workers who verify Social Security numbers and provide tax records will begin delaying some loan approvals, he said. Many lenders use tax transcripts to confirm the returns that borrowers provide are valid. “In the early days, very little imA construction worker builds a new home at a new sub-division in Sugar Grove, Illinois, a suburb outside of Chicago. Photo: AFP

pact,” Mr Walters said in a telephone interview from Detroit. “But the longer it goes on, the more impact there’ll be.” Kris Wilson, senior loan officer at Fairway Independent Mortgage, said the Madison, Wisconsin-based lender is planning to delay until after closing the requirement for a tax transcript in most cases. Other lenders may be more reluctant. “It is a risk,” Mr Wilson said. “But we are unwilling to disappoint customers in that way.” Loans that conform to guidelines set by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will not be affected directly by the shutdown, because the governmentcontrolled mortgage aggregators fund operations through fees collected from private lenders, not taxpayers, according to Stan Humphries, Zillow Inc’s chief economist. The two mortgage finance companies are responsible for the majority of new loans while the FHA and US Department of Veterans Affairs account for about one in four new mortgages. The US Department of Agriculture, which offers low, down-payment mortgages to rural borrowers, has canceled loan closings during the shutdown, according to its website. A short-term disruption of some FHA loans “while certainly detrimen-

tal, shouldn’t have much long-term impact on either demand or housing affordability,” Mr Humphries said in a September 30 blog post. Only 67 of the FHA’s 2972 workers are working through the shutdown, including 29 employees dealing with

‘The last thing we need is anything that shakes the confidence in a softly recovering housing market.’
David Stevens Chief executive officer of the Mortgage Bankers Association

loan endorsements and preservation of properties, HUD spokesman Jerry Brown said. “There’s a skeleton crew,” he said in a telephone interview. “We still intend on processing FHA loans.” The smaller staff will take longer to

process loans with low down payments that need mortgage insurance, a signoff required for lenders that don’t have so-called “direct endorsement” authority. About 20pc of FHA loans would require such a manual review after the loans close. “There would be a handful of people managing the whole country for the direct endorsement backlog and it will probably be very slow,” Stevens said. A partial federal shutdown will cost the US at least $300 million a day in lost economic output at the start, according to Lexington, Massachusettsbased IHS Inc. While that’s a fraction of the country’s $15.7 trillion economy, the effects probably will grow over time as consumers and businesses defer purchases and expansion plans. The furloughs will first affect spending in metro areas where federal employees make up more than 10pc of the workforce, such as Washington; Virginia Beach, Virginia; Dayton, Ohio; and Honolulu, according to Jed Kolko, chief economist for Trulia Inc, a real estate website. “If the shutdown persists, local economies and housing demand could be hurt – especially in markets where people depend more on federal paychecks,” he said in a September 30

note. “At the other extreme, just 1 pc of local wages in New York and San Jose come from federal paychecks.” Builders most at risk of slowing sales because they cater to buyers using FHA financing include DR Horton Inc, Lennar Corp and KB Home, according to Jay McCanless, an analyst with Sterne Agee & Leach Inc in Nashville, Tennessee. “Unless the shutdown turns into weeks rather than days, we do not expect a decrease in demand since the FHA stoppage should delay rather than cancel closings,” Mr McCanless wrote in a September 30 note. DR Horton, the largest US builder by revenue, fell 0.3pc on October 1 to $19.38 as nine of the 11 companies in an index of builders rose. The gauge has slumped 21pc since May 14 when interest rates began rising more than a percentage point after the Federal Reserve signaled it could start curbing stimulus measures. HUD counselling for homeowners with payment difficulties won’t be directly affected by the shutdown, said Tom LaFleur, executive director of Pacific Community Services Inc, a government-approved counselling center in Pittsburg, California. “Most HUD counseling agencies were grossly underfunded already,” Mr LaFleur said in a telephone interview. “We got a $14,000 grant for a program that needed about $80,000. That’s typical.” Funding won’t stop at federal construction projects, such as courthouses, military facilities, dams and levees, according to Brian Turmail, a spokesman for the Association of General Contractors of America, a trade organisation based in Arlington, Virginia. Delays may occur if contractors can’t get answers for unforeseen questions or change orders in a project, and new contracts won’t be awarded, he said. “We’re not huge fans of Obamacare, but we want to see the federal government proceed,” Mr Turmail said. A bigger concern for the economy than the shutdown would be Congress’s inability to raise the debt ceiling by October 17, which could lead to a default on US debt obligations. Mortgage rates would probably rise sharply, making homes unaffordable for many buyers, according to Stuart Gabriel, director of the Ziman Center for Real Estate at the University of California, Los Angeles. “All bets are off and the downside economic impact will be grave,” Mr Gabriel said in a telephone interview. “All aspects of the debt markets would be adversely affected. It would have serious and egregious effects on the US economy.” – Bloomberg News


British housing market facing fears of new bubble
BRITAIN’S house market is showing strong signs of recovery largely on the back of surging prices in London, fuelling fears of a new bubble, say analysts. The average cost of a home in the capital surged by 10 percent between July and September compared with the third quarter of 2012, British bank and major mortgage provider Nationwide said last week. It added that the average London home, including flats as well as houses, now costs £331,338 (US$532,730) – 8pc higher than in 2007 or during the run-up to the global financial crisis that eventually led to prices crashing. Across Britain, the average price of a home stands at £170,918 after gaining 4.3pc in the third quarter on an annual basis, Nationwide said. “The acceleration in house prices ... reported by the Nationwide will fuel concern that we could be on our way to a new housing bubble,” said Howard Archer, chief UK economist at IHS Global Insight research group. “Housing market activity is now really stepping up a gear, supported by markedly strengthening consumer confidence and elevated employment, and fuelled by” government initiatives, Mr Archer said. “On top of this, the Bank of England has indicated that interest rates are unlikely to rise before mid-2016, which seems likely to give many people greater confidence in their ability to purchase a house,” he added. The government launched a new program called “Help to Buy” earlier this year, offering interest-free loans for a set time period to help buyers with only a 5pc deposit to purchase newly built properties. The scheme will be extended in January to offer mortgage guarantees for new and existing homes worth up to £600,000. People will not be allowed to benefit from the scheme if they intend to own more than one property. The current state of the housing market has meanwhile led to splits in the governing Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition. Outspoken business secretary Vince Cable has warned that Help To Buy could fuel a new bubble. However, Conservative MP George Osborne, who as finance minister holds a more senior role in government, maintains that the scheme is needed to help homebuyers struggling to find sufficient deposits. Britain’s housing market has been bolstered in part by the country’s economic recovery in the first half of the year and on keen demand from cashrich foreign buyers, particularly for investment property in London. Analysts also blame a shortage of affordable property for the current boost in prices. Estate agencies are reaping the rewards, with upmarket group Foxtons enjoying a strong stock market debut this month. Foxtons and its rivals are also benefiting from rising rental values – a consequence, experts say, of people struggling to afford to buy homes. Amid market concerns, the Bank of England last week insisted that it would remain “vigilant” and was ready to act over the threat of a dangerous property bubble. “There has been much discussion recently on whether the upturn in the UK housing market is too vigorous,” said Matthew Poignton, an analyst at consultancy firm Capital Economics. “Our view is that housing is already overvalued ... and that makes any further gains in prices a matter for concern.” BNP Paribas economist David Tinsley said prices were being driven by a lack of supply but cautioned against speaking too quickly about a potential bubble. “The argument that there is a housing bubble in the UK right now is not persuasive,” Mr Tinsley wrote in a note to clients. “Arguably, there is a deep-seated supply problem in the UK, which is forcing up the real price of housing, but that is not the same thing” as a bubble leading to a crash, he said. – AFP

Science & Technology 33

Smart phones in hand, patrons logoff Yangon’s internet cafes
aung kyaw nyunt THE boom in mobile phones is echoing in the empty spaces of Yangon’s internet cafes, owners say. “Internet users are decreasing at our internet cafe since MPT [Myanma Posts and Telecommunications] released K1500 SIM cards,” said an official at 8 Mile internet cafe. As a result, he said, most of his patrons are gamers. Those who used to drop in to check email and surf the web are now signing up for mobile internet by SMS and keeping up with the world outside on their phones. But some people who log on via their smartphones still drop by when their handheld connections prove too slow, said U Khin Maung Oo, owner of Best Solution in Yankin Township. U Aung Win Thu, owner of Cyber Shine in Yankin township, said if the siren call of handphones continues to lure customers away from his internet cafe, he’ll have to take up another business instead. He said the numbers of both internet users and gamers had dropped by half. Kyaw Myo Htut in Sanchaung township is among those who have turned from

Method for ‘designer babies’ in the ethical spotlight
EUROPEAN bioethicists raised the red flag Thursday over an American patent for a method that could allow people to choose genetic traits like eye colour in children sired from donor eggs or sperm. The patent for what is called a “gamete (egg or sperm) donor selection” method, was granted by the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) to the firm 23andMe on September 24. A description on the USPTO website said the “technique allows the potential gamete recipients to make more informed donor choices”. “What 23andMe is claiming is a method by which prospective donors of ova and/or sperm may be selected so as to increase the likelihood of producing a human baby with characteristics desired by the prospective parents,” said the commentary by medical ethicists from Belgium, the Netherlands and France published in the journal Genetics in Medicine. This would be based on a comparison of the genomic data of the two parents. Characteristics on the parents’ “shopping list” could include height, eye colour, muscle development, personality traits, or risk of developing certain types of cancer and other diseases, said the commentators. A figure attached to the patent application would allow prospective parents to indicate whether “I prefer a child with”: “longest expected life span”, “least expected life cost of health care”, or “least expected cumulative duration of hospitalisation”, they said. There were also options for “0% likely endurance athlete” and “100% likely sprinter”, though the company had stated it could not guarantee the outcome. The commentators describe the method as “hugely ethically controversial” -- particularly as it allows for the selection of characteristics that have nothing to do with the child’s health. “At no stage during the examination of the patent application did the patent office examiner question whether techniques for facilitating the ‘design’ of future human babies were appropriate subject matter for a patent,” they wrote. The USPTO said it did not comment on issued patents. 23forMe said the patent, applied for more than five years ago, was for a tool dubbed Family Traits Inheritance Calculator that offered “an engaging way for you and your partner to see what kind of traits your child might inherit from you” -- from eye colour to whether the child will be able to perceive bitter taste or be lactose intolerant.

An internet cafe in Yankin Township. Photo: Zarni Phyo

cafes to phones. “Once I played games at internet cafés with my friends. Now, I don’t go to the internet cafe because I am using the internet on my mobile phone.” Phone charges aside, he also feels he’s saving money by going online either on his phone or his home PC. “Once if I went to the internet cafe, I lost time and spent more money for food. So I am using the internet at home at present.”

As internet access spreads from the hub of the local cafe to the wireless world of homes, restaurants and even on the street, only higher connection speeds offered by cafes continue to lure in customers periodically. “If I want to chat with my friends, I make an appointment with them at night because the internet connection is best at night,” Kyaw Myo Htut said. “If I have to meet with them urgently, I go to internet cafes.”

Pacific’s Palau mulls drone patrols at sea
THE tiny Pacific nation of Palau says it hopes to use drone patrols to deter illegal fishermen from using its vast territorial waters in what officials believe is a worldfirst use for the technology. Palau has an exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of 630,000 square kilometres (240,000 square miles) – roughly the size of France – but only one patrol boat, making it a prime target for illegal trawlers. A five-day test programme using three unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) – officials prefer the term because “drone” is felt to have military connotations – wrapped up on Friday after impressing locals. President Tommy Remengesau said the UAVs showed potential to “greatly increase the efficiency of our surveillance capability and, most importantly, significantly decrease the overall cost of the joint surveillance effort”. The idea of using the drones emerged after Australian mining magnate Andrew Forrest visited Palau in January and asked his Minderoo philanthropic foundation to examine the illegal fishing issue. “Andrew absolutely loves the pristine environment of Palau and also loves the people there,” Greg Parker of the Minderoo Foundation said. “He wasn’t going to stand back and watch Palau being bullied by illegal fishermen.” The foundation paid for the trial and Mr. Parker said the data gathered would be analysed to see if UAV patrols were feasible, with a 12-month trial the next step if they get a green light. He said experts in the field were not aware of UAVs being used for longrange maritime patrols before and other countries in Micronesia had already expressed interest in adopting similar measures. He said in addition to patrols, UAVs could also be used for purposes such as search and rescue, mapping and surveying marine wildlife. Palau is already regarded as a leader in marine conservation after creating the world’s first shark sanctuary in 2009. Earlier this year, Mr. Remengesau also proposed banning all commercial fishing from its waters, saying the nation of 21,000 people generated negligible revenue from the industry and preferred to concentrate on attracting tourists. – AFP


‘Shopping lists’ could include height, eye colour, and muscle development

The language of the patent was much broader than the technology to support the calculator, the company said in a blog on its website. “At the time 23andMe filed the patent, there was consideration that the technology could have potential applications for fertility clinics, so language specific to the fertility treatment process was included,” it said. “The company never pursued the concepts discussed in the patent beyond our Family Traits Inheritance Calculator, nor do we have any plans to do so.”– AFP

the hague

NOTICE is hereby given that Esoniee International Co., Ltd. of No. 929, Yuan Tsao Road, Yuan Lin Chen, Chung Hua Shien, Taiwan, R.O.C. is the Owner and Sole Proprietor of the following trademark: -

With a single stroke, new app turns Van Gogh fans into art detectives
AMSTERDAM’S Van Gogh Museum on Thursday launched a new app for tablets allowing users to turn “art detective” when looking at the Dutch master’s paintings. The “Touch Van Gogh” app for Android and iPad tablets allows users to explore the secrets behind some of Van Gogh’s best works including “The bedroom”, “View from Theo’s apartment” and “Daubigny’s garden”. “The app ... uses multitouch features that make it easy and entertaining to explore the information concealed in and under the paint,” the museum said in a statement. “People can discover the secrets of Van Gogh’s painting techniques and learn more about his working methods,” added museum director Axel Rueger. For instance, with the swipe of a finger an old layer of varnish can be digitally recover how a painting looked before restoration, exactly why it was painted, where the paint has become discoloured and how the composition is con-

‘Users can unravel the mysteries of Vincent Van Gogh’s paintings at their own pace.’
Van Gogh Museum press release

moved from “The bedroom” to revealed a restored painting, or the top layer of “View from Theo’s apartment” can be rubbed away to reveal how Van Gogh reused his canvasses. The app allows users to “dis-

structed,” the museum said. “Like a detective, users can unravel the mysteries of Vincent van Gogh’s paintings at their own pace, gradually learning more about the life and work of this famous

artist,” it added. The Van Gogh Museum last month unveiled a long-lost painting by the Dutch master, thought for years to have been a forgery. “Sunset at Montmajour”, a large oil landscape from 1888, was authenticated by experts as genuine after spending decades in a Norwegian attic. The museum reopened its doors to the public in early May with a stunning new display of some of the Dutch master’s greatest works, completing a trio of renovations of the city’s most famous museums. It is located on Amsterdam’s historic Museumplein where many other Dutch art treasures like Rembrandt’s “Night Watch” can also be found at the recently reopened Rijksmuseum. – AFP

(Reg: No. IV/531/2013) in respect of goods in Class 25 “Clothes; Underwear; Swimming suit; Brassieres; Pajamas; Bath robes; Underpants; Skirts; Pants; Shoes; Hats; Hosiery; Cold weather gloves; Aprons [clothing]; Scarfs”. Any fraudulent imitation or unauthorized use of the said trademark will be dealt with according to law. U THAN WIN, B.Com, B.L. for Esoniee International Co., Ltd. By its Attorneys Ageless P.O. Box No. 26, Yangon. Phone: 372416 Dated: 7th October, 2013



WORLD EDITOR: Douglas Long |

Experts see Syria progress
INTERNATIONAL experts preparing to destroy Syria’s chemical weapons arsenal said they had made “encouraging” progress on October 3 and expect to carry out onsite inspections within days. UN Security Council Resolution 2118 was passed after gas attacks outside Damascus killed hundreds in August, an atrocity that prompted the United States to threaten military strikes on Syria and later led to a rare US-Russian disarmament accord. The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) and the United Nations said the inspectors, who arrived on October 1, had made “encouraging initial progress” following a day of meetings with Syrian authorities. “Documents handed over [on October 3] by the Syrian government look promising, according to team members, but further analysis, particularly of technical diagrams, will be necessary and some more questions remain to be answered,” it said. The team said it hopes to begin onsite inspections and the initial disabling of equipment “within the next week”. The 19-member team from The Hague-based OPCW faces a daunting task, as President Bashar al-Assad’s regime is understood to have more than 1000 tonnes of the nerve agent sarin, mustard gas and other banned weapons stored at dozens of sites. Their immediate aim is to disable production sites by late October or early November using “expedient methods”, including explosives, sledgehammers and pouring concrete, an OPCW official said. It is the first mission in the organisation’s history to be undertaken in a country embroiled in a civil war. A popular uprising that began in March 2011 in Syria has snowballed into a full-blown conflict that has claimed more than 115,000 lives, forced millions to flee and trapped hundreds of thousands in besieged towns and neighbourhoods. On October 2, the Security Council demanded immediate and “unhindered” access to the trapped civilians, in a non-binding statement that diplomats said sends a strong signal to Damascus. UN aid agencies say there are more than 2.1 million refugees and nearly another 6 million people displaced inside Syria, adding that they have not had access to about 2 million trapped civilians for months. The statement says there should be “unhindered humanitarian access” across the conflict lines “and, where appropriate, across borders from neighbouring countries”. Syria has blocked aid missions from those nations, saying supplies will go to rebels. Since the beginning of the uprising, the council had been deadlocked over Syria as Russia defended the Assad regime. Last month’s arms resolution and the October 2 statement are breakthroughs that helped avert potential US and French military action against Mr Assad’s regime. On October 3, Washington said it would allow nonessential staff to return to its embassy in Beirut, which was partially evacuated in September when military strikes appeared imminent. – AFP


A Buddhist monk paddles a boat through a flooded temple in Ayutt Prevention and Mitigation Department reported last week that 25 p rains brought by Typhoon Wutip. Photo: AFP

Italy drama highlights EU migrant policy
CLAIRE ROSEMBERG THE deaths of scores of African asylum-seekers off the Italian island of Lampedusa last week underlines Europe’s failure to cope with the flood of would-be immigrants knocking at its doors. Scenes of capsized boats and desperately hungry faces have become commonplace in southern Europe, with 25,000 refugees drowned in the Mediterranean in the past 20 years, according to the International Organization for Migration. Of these, 2000 died in 2011 and 1700 last year. And Europe is bracing for a possible exodus of mind-numbing dimensions from the war in Syria, where 2 million people have fled across the borders and millions are internally displaced. As was the case during the fighting in Libya in 2011 and during the so-called Arab Spring protests that unravelled across the Mediterranean, the pressure is on Europe’s sea-washed southern nations – Italy, Malta and Spain – but also on economically battered Greece and Cyprus. Italy on October 3 called for more assistance from the European Union to deal with the sharp increase in refugee numbers, with Interior Minister Angelino Alfano calling the drama “a European tragedy”. Under EU rules, it is up to the nation that is a refugee’s first port of call to consider their request for asylum and to house them in the meantime. Under consistent attack from the EU’s Mediterranean members for its lack of financial and political solidarity from Europe’s north, the system has remained unchanged since its inception in 2003. To date, there is no mechanism enabling an automatic share-out of refugees within the 28-member bloc, and past calls for a review have been systematically knocked down by lessaffected countries. Meanwhile, asylum conditions differ from one state to the next regarding housing, health or welfare, with the Jesuit Refugee Service denouncing the “inhumanity” of Europe’s asylum system in June. To prevent tragedies such as Lampedusa, the European Commission has devised a European external border surveillance system known as EUROSUR to pool information on boats believed to be carrying illegal migrants, fight trafficking networks and help save refugees in distress. Due to become operational in December, it has been budgeted at 244 million euros (US$332 million) between 2014 and 2020. But some EU lawmakers say the system lacks muscle such as providing for more sea patrols in dangerous waters. “Italy is not prepared for the surge of migrants on its coasts,” said European Greens co-leader Monica Frassoni. “The EU as a whole has a responsibility to develop a more humane and robust system.” The EU executive, the European Commission, urged member states on October 3 to kickstart EUROSUR as soon as possible while saying the bloc needed to press ahead with efforts to open new channels for legal migration. In June, for instance, the EU signed a “mobility partnership” with Morocco to negotiate a deal facilitating the delivery of visas for students, researchers and business executives. Its flipside is to also agree to jointly fight trafficking. The commission hopes to sign similar agreements with other countries across the Mediterranean, such as Tunisia. “We need sound policies on asylum and migration flows,” said commission spokesman Michele Cercone. In New York, a UN official said the “criminalisation of irregular immigration” had played a role in the Lampedusa tragedy. “Treating irregular migrants only by repressive measures would create these tragedies,” said Francois Crepeau, the UN special rapporteur on the human rights of migrants. He warned that by closing their borders, European countries would only give more power to human traffickers. Instead, he urged the bloc to reinforce opportunities for legal immigration. At talks this week between EU home affairs ministers, the commission is likely also to stress the need to resettle the most vulnerable refugees, notably in line with pleas from the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).


Number of refugees drowned in the Mediterranean Sea in the past 20 years EU states last year agreed to 102,700 requests for asylum against 84,300 in 2011. Some two-thirds were registered in four countries – Germany (22,000), Sweden (15,300), Britain (14,600) and France (14,300). While there are only 52,000 Syrians registered in Europe now, the trickle is beginning to grow. Italy is among the most affected, with 3000 refugees arriving in August alone, according to UN refugee agency data. – AFP

The Gate of Europe, a monument that pays tribute to migrants arriving on the Italian island of Lampedusa. Photo: AFP


Vietnamese blogger gets two-and-a-half year jail sentence

Malaysia approves controversial detention powers

Russia charges 30 Greenpeace activists with piracy


Soldiers forage, golfers play in shutdown
GROCERY stores on Army bases in the United States are closed. The golf course at Andrews Air Force base is open. All 128 employees of the Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corp are working, while 3000 safety inspectors employed by the Federal Aviation Administration are off the job. The Food and Drug Administration is reviewing new pharmaceuticals. The National Institutes of Health is turning away new patients for clinical trials. The seeming randomness of the US government’s first shutdown in 17 years can be explained in part by anomalies in the spending Congress does and does not control. Activities funded by fees from drug, financialservices and other companies are insulated from year-to-year budget dysfunction. The ones that get a budget from Congress get hit. “What’s really happening in America is that the appropriations process has completely failed,” said Elaine Kamarck, a senior fellow in governance at the Brookings Institution in Washington who worked in the White House during the last shutdown in 1995-96. This isn’t government according to US civics textbooks. Government is supposed to collect taxes, the president is supposed to propose each year how to spend the money, and Congress has the final say with the constitutional power of the purse. Instead, Congress has had to resort to a “continuing resolution” – a catchall bill to keep the government operating on life support while negotiations continue – in each of the past 16 years. There have been 93 continuing resolutions passed since 1998, covering operations from as little as 21 days in 1999 to the full years of 2007 and 2011, according to the Congressional Research Service. Since the stand-off between President Bill Clinton and Congress that last shut down most of the government, funding of more functions has shifted to means outside the appropriations process, Ms Kamarck said. Passport applications are paid for by fees. The FDA is funded through agencies define what’s necessary for life, health, safety and safeguarding of property. While many functions at Army bases continue, commissaries in the United States are closed, forcing troops and their families to shop at local stores that cost about 30 percent more, Lieutenant General Raymond Mason, the service’s deputy chief of staff for logistics, said last week at a House hearing.

In Rock Creek Park ... cars made their morning commute along a well-travelled parkway while hikers were prohibited to walk.
assessments on companies like Pfizer and Bristol-Myers Squibb. The US Patent and Trademark Office, which has said it can operate for at least four weeks, has been funded by user fees since 1993. The Federal Highway Administration is funded by taxes on gasoline and diesel fuel, not income taxes, so its 2914 employees are on the job. Other agencies can keep operating with multiyear funding or reserves. Visitor centres and public facilities at US Fish and Wildlife Service refuges are closed, while construction and land acquisition continues because those activities have long-term funding. The Saint Lawrence Seaway agency is using a revolving account containing US$12.8 million to stay fully operational. Closures can seem arbitrary as “For the soldiers and their families, that’s very difficult,” he said. The Andrews Air Force Base golf course is funded through user fees, and that’s why it remains open, said Air Force Captain Lindy Singleton, chief of public affairs for the 11th Wing at Andrews. In Rock Creek Park, the urban forest in Washington where Theodore Roosevelt used to ride his horse, cars made their morning commute along a well-travelled parkway while hikers were prohibited to walk. Numbers of furloughed employees vary dramatically from agency to agency. The Agriculture Department is furloughing 84pc of its staff, while the Veterans Affairs Department is keeping 96pc of its workers on the job. – Bloomberg News

haya, north of Bangkok, on October 3. Thailand’s Disaster provinces were flooded and 27 people had died due to heavy


US intensifies effort to shape Asia-Pacific trade
KARL MALAKUNAS US efforts to shape far-reaching new trade rules for the Asia-Pacific are set to dominate a leaders’ summit in Bali starting on October 7, amid concerns they are too ambitious and risk adding to regional tensions. US President Barack Obama’s administration is planning to use the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) gathering on the Indonesian resort island to try to secure a year-end agreement for a giant freetrade pact, which would include 12 diverse countries but significantly not China. While proponents of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) insist it will create “gold-standard” rules to deal with 21st century economic issues such as intellectual property, analysts caution it will likely fail to achieve targets and potentially alienate China. “If the US gets this concluded in a significant way, they will have taken the lead in setting up the trade rules [for the region],” said Jayant Menon, an expert on economic integration at the Asian Development Bank. “[But] if you judge it by the gold standard, I think this will only be a bronze.” Mr Obama, who has said he wants a deal on the TPP by the end of the year, had been scheduled to meet with the leaders of the other 11 countries that are planning to join on the sidelines of the two-day APEC leaders’ summit. But Mr Obama had to cancel plans to attend APEC due to the brutal political standoff in Washington that last week led to a government shutdown. Mr Obama’s administration has earmarked the TPP as one of the most important trade tools for his strategic “pivot” to the Asia-Pacific, and negotiations for the pact are expected to remain a top US priority in Bali. US Secretary of State John Kerry will replace Mr Obama at APEC and at the following East Asia Summit in Brunei, the White House said on October 3. Chinese President Xi Jinping provided a timely reminder of China’s growing influence in the region with a successful trip to Jakarta ahead of APEC. Mr Xi became the first foreign leader to address Indonesia’s parliament and oversaw trade deals between the two countries worth US$28 billion. On October 11 he was in Malaysia, one of China’s most important Southeast Asian trading partners. China initially expressed strong opposition to the TPP, viewing it as another US containment tool, although it has recently adopted a more accepting tone. The TPP would bring together the economies of the United States, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Singapore, Malaysia, Brunei, Vietnam, Chile, Canada, Mexico and Peru. Some of the “gold standards” being pushed by the United States are also highly controversial, such as rules to weaken control of state-owned enterprises and to boost the power of multinationals over the pharmaceutical sector. Countries would also allow a TPP-created tribunal to adjudicate complaints by corporations against governments, which analysts say is a major sticking point for some nations as they regard it as weakening sovereignty. These tough rules will ultimately be the TPP’s downfall, according to Mr Menon, the lead economist for regional integration at the ADB. “I don’t think it will get done this year. If it does, it will be so heavily watered down to the point of insignificance,” Mr Menon said. – AFP

NOTICE is hereby given that Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd., of 2-9 Kanda-Tsukasamachi, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, Japan is the Owner of the following Trade Marks:-

Reg. No. 5301/2013

‘There is the real risk of geopolitics spilling over into commerce and integration in East Asia.’
Shiro Armstrong Australian National University

Meanwhile, China is looking to push ahead with a rival mega-trade pact grouping 16 countries in the region, potentially opening up a new front in the struggle between the world powers for dominance in the Asia-Pacific. “There is the real risk of geopolitics spilling over into commerce and integration in East Asia in ways that will damage and diminish economic benefits,” Shiro Armstrong, an economist at the Australian National University, wrote recently in the East Asia Forum about the rival pacts.

Reg. No. 5302/2013 in respect of “Int’l Class 5: dietetic foods adapted for medical purpose; dietetic drinks adapted for medical purpose; supplements. Int’l Class 30: tea; coffee and cocoa; ice; confectionery, bread and buns; ice cream mixes; sherbet mixes; cereal preparations; almond paste; instant confectionery mixes; flour for food; gluten for food. Int’l Class 32: beer; carbonated drinks; nonalcoholic fruit juice beverages; isotonic beverages; extracts of hops for making beer; whey beverages”. Fraudulent imitation or unauthorised use of the said Trade Marks will be dealt with according to law. Win Mu Tin, M.A., H.G.P., D.B.L for Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. P. O. Box 60, Yangon E-mail: Dated: 7 October 2013

36 World Asia-Pacific


Malaysian detention powers approved
A CONTROVERSIAL Malaysian government move to give authorities power to hold people for years without charge is headed for parliamentary approval after the lower house passed it shortly after midnight on October 3. The move by Prime Minister Najib Razak’s long-ruling coalition has sparked an uproar by the opposition and activists who denounce it as a step back toward the tough authoritarian rule that Mr Najib had pledged to end. The amendment to a 1959 crime prevention law allows authorities to hold crime suspects for an initial two years, which can be extended indefinitely without charge. The government says police need such powers to deal with a recent burst of gun violence. But preventive detention is a highly charged issue in Malaysia, whose 56-year-old ruling coalition has been accused of regularly using longstanding tough laws to silence dissent. “It’s unconstitutional to us. It takes away the right to liberty. And the law is drafted in such a way that the net can cover everyone,” said Tian Chua, a senior opposition politician. The passage comes despite a pledge last month by the government to take into account concerns that have been raised. Senate approval is still required, but that is virtually assured as the Barisan Nasional (National Front) ruling coalition controls the body. Under public pressure for reform, Mr Najib in 2011 abolished two tough, decades-old laws that allowed indefinite detention without trial, touting the move as a shift toward a more democratic society. Mr Najib said last week the crime amendments would not be abused, and his home minister insists they are far weaker than the earlier security laws. “I assure you again, this would not be used against someone just because we have political differences,” Home Minister Zahid Hamidi told parliament just before it voted, Malaysian media reported. But Mr Najib’s opponents have accused him of swerving to the right after winning May general elections on promises of reform. Police blame dozens of shootings in recent months on a turf war by gang members they say were freed when the previous security laws were scrapped. They have pushed for stronger powers, but the opposition says police already have enough leeway. Human Rights Watch’s deputy Asia director Phil Robertson said that “Malaysia is taking a huge step backwards on rights”. He called the amendments “methods that do little to curtail crime but threaten everyone’s liberty”. Some 30 activists, rights lawyers and members of the public staged a protest march to parliament on September 30, accusing Mr Najib of betraying his earlier reform pledge. – AFP

Sumatran rhinos found in Indonesian Borneo
HIDDEN cameras have captured images of the critically endangered Sumatran rhino on the Indonesian part of Borneo island, where it was thought to have died out long ago, the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) said on October 2. Sixteen camera traps – remotecontrolled cameras with motion sensors used in ecological research – filmed the rhino walking through the forest and wallowing in mud in Kutai Barat, East Kalimantan Province. The footage, filmed on June 23, June 30 and August 3, is believed to show different rhinos, although the WWF said confirmation of this will require further study. There were once Sumatran rhinos all over Borneo, but their numbers have dwindled dramatically. They were thought to exist only on the Malaysian part of the island. But the research disclosed on October 2, a joint effort between the WWF and authorities in Kutai Barat, shows that the animal is still present on the Indonesian side of Borneo. The world’s third-largest island, Borneo is shared by Indonesia, Malaysia and Brunei. “This physical evidence is very important, as it forms the basis to develop and implement more comprehensive conservation efforts for the Indonesian rhinoceros,” said Indonesian forestry minister Zulkifli Hasan.

This still from video footage released on October 2 shows a Sumatran rhino in a mudpool in the forests of Indonesian Borneo. Photo: AFP

“This finding represents the hard work of many parties and will hopefully contribute to achieving Indonesia’s target of 3 percent per year rhino population growth.” He urged officials and environmentalists to come up with a scientific estimate of the Sumatran rhino population in Indonesian Borneo. The research was unveiled at the start of an international meeting on efforts to protect rhinos in Bandar Lampung on Indonesia’s western island of Sumatra, with governments from Bhutan, Indonesia, India,

Malaysia and Nepal represented. There are estimated to be fewer than 275 Sumatran rhinos remaining in the wild, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature. There are only a few substantial populations still in existence, most of them in Sumatra. Poaching is considered the main reason for the dramatic decline in numbers, with the rhino’s horn and some of its other body parts considered highly valuable in traditional Chinese medicine. – AFP


Rainsy looks for support abroad
CAMBODIA’S opposition leader is touring Southeast Asia to appeal for the intervention of neighbouring countries in a political stalemate triggered by disputed elections, his party said on October 1. Sam Rainsy, whose opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) is boycotting parliament over the controversial July polls, left on October 1 for countries including Singapore and the Philippines. “His goal is to meet the leaders of some countries in order to seek their intervention in the election irregularities,” party spokesman Yem Ponharith said. “If necessary he may continue to Europe. Otherwise he will return to attend a rally on October 6.” Cambodia’s parliament last month approved a new five-year term for Prime Minister Hun Sen following weeks of political turmoil. The CNRP denounced what it described as a “constitutional coup” after the legislature – with only ruling party MPs in attendance – extended Mr Hun Sen’s nearly three decades in power. The opposition, which is demanding an independent probe into alleged electoral fraud, has said it will hold another demonstration on October 23. Tens of thousands of opposition supporters joined three days of rallies in the capital last month that turned bloody. One protester was shot dead and several wounded as security forces clashed with a stone-throwing crowd. Mr Hun Sen – a 61-year-old former Khmer Rouge cadre who defected and oversaw Cambodia’s rise from the ashes of war – has ruled for 28 years and vowed to continue until he is 74. – AFP

Asia-Pacific World 37

THE B.V.D. LICENSING CORPORATION, a Delaware corporation with its principal place of business at 1 Fruit of the Loom Drive, Bowling Green, Kentucky 42102-9015, U.S.A., is the Owner of the following Trade Mark:-

Bloggers behind bars: Vietnam’s war on dissent
CAT BARTON SECRETLY moved from prison to prison, held in solitary confinement, their families subject to constant harassment - Vietnam’s activist bloggers say they are treated like international terrorists. While Vietnam insists it has no political prisoners – and therefore will not comment on the subject – rights groups estimate hundreds of activists are locked up for speaking out against one-party communist rule, including at least 46 jailed this year. Activists say that while conditions are no picnic for common criminals, prisoners of conscience face particularly harsh treatment behind bars. Prisons have a separate area for political prisoners where “anything can happen and no one knows”, said Nguyen Tri Dung, the son of high-profile blogger Dieu Cay who is serving 12 years for anti-state propaganda. Like many dissidents, Mr Cay – whose real name is Nguyen Van Hai – refused to plead guilty. Now his relatives believe he is being punished in prison for this show of defiance. Since he was detained in 2008 on an initial charge of tax evasion, Mr Cay has been moved 10 times between different prisons, according to his family, who said they are never notified in advance. The imprisoned dissident, whose case has been raised by US President Barack Obama, faces visitor restrictions and constant pressure to sign a confession, his relatives said. His son said he too had been repeatedly detained by authorities – always for less than 24 hours – to disrupt his studies and prevent him sitting his exams. Using vague, trumped-up administrative charges is a way for authorities to warn activists to cease their campaigning, experts say. Le Quoc Quan sentenced Another prominent blogger, the Catholic lawyer Le Quoc Quan, was sentenced on October 2 to two-and-a-half years for tax evasion, charges denounced by rights campaigners as politically motivated. “I am the victim of political acts,” Mr Quan told the court, flatly denying the accusations and saying he had not been allowed to see the evidence against him.

Reg. No. 403/1974 in respect of “all kinds of clothing and dress accessories for men, women and children”. Fraudulent imitation or unauthorised use of the said Trade Mark will be dealt with according to law. Win Mu Tin, M.A., H.G.P., D.B.L for THE B.V.D. LICENSING CORPORATION P. O. Box 60, Yangon E-mail: Dated: 7 October 2013


SANOFI, a Company incorporated in France, of 54 rue La Boetie, 75008 Paris, France, is the Owner of the following Trade Marks:-

Reg. No. 1678/2013
Activists wave pictures of Vietnamese activist lawyer and blogger Le Quoc Quan in Hanoi on October 2. Photo: AFP

Reg. No. 1677/2013

range of sensitive topics including civil rights, political pluralism and religious freedom, has been in detention since last December. His lawyer Ha Huy Son told the court that there were “no grounds to prosecute” the popular blogger over tax evasion, and said police had ordered tax authorities to cook up the charges. Shouting “Free Le Quoc Quan” and waving signs calling for his release, several hundred people blocked a key intersection in the capital as his trial got under way, causing rush-hour traffic chaos. Poor treatment for political prisoners Once in jail, the Vietnamese authorities are always strict with prisoners who do not admit their guilt, said one activist who spent five years in prison in the past. “They fear they will influence other prisoners and cause problems,” he said. Criminal and political prisoners are held separately and treated in very different ways, he said on condition of anonymity. “Criminal prisoners in Vietnamese jails can buy anything – food, tobacco, heroin,” he said, but political prisoners are often denied books or writing paper and held in cells on their own. Vietnam’s authoritarian government does not allow independent inspections of jails, but experts said arbitrary periods of solitary confinement – another measure used against political detainees – could constitute torture under the Convention Against Torture, which Vietnam has said it will ratify this year. “The reports that we’ve received indicate that it is a standard practice and that decisions to send someone to solitary confinement are arbitrary, based on the discretion of jail officials,” said HRW deputy Asia director Phil Robertson. ‘Isolate the activists’ Former political prisoners and their relatives interviewed by AFP described intense harassment of families, from pressuring friends to cut contact to denial of business licences needed to make a living. The treatment is designed to “isolate the political activists … and scare family, friends”, the formerly detained activist said. “They find other ways to control, persuade or discredit [activists],” the activist said. The pressure exerted on families and friends means many dissidents end up isolated from normal Vietnamese life – which

‘I will continue my fight against corruption, attacking bureaucracy and stagnancy that are undermining our country.’
Le Quoc Quan Vietnamese blogger

often makes them even more determined. “Difficult people are the ones prepared to make a stand and then they get ostracised, and that makes them act even more stubbornly,” said Bill Hayton, author of Rising Dragon, who is banned from Vietnam. The excessive reaction by authorities is counterproductive, said Huong Nguyen, a Vietnamese student living in exile in the United States. “Families [of activists] learn a lot about the nature of the political regime,” she said, adding that many relatives “turn dissident” themselves. Ms Nguyen, whose fiancé was jailed in 2010, said the Vietnamese consulate in Washington refused to renew her passport unless she promised to give up her “dissident activities”. She refused and was recently granted political asylum. Fighting from behind bars Branded an “enemy of the internet” by Reporters Without Borders, Vietnam bans private media, and all newspapers and television channels are state-run. Even so, the internet and social media are changing the nature of the battle. Facebook is sporadically blocked but wildly popular among Vietnamese users. “Social media connectivity and more broad and experienced activist networks are making sure that the word from prisons gets out far and wide,” said Mr Robertson. In June, after authorities refused to respond to a formal complaint and attempted to put him in solitary confinement for three months, Mr Cay embarked on a hunger strike. “He is trying to light up the real fate of political prisoners of Vietnam, which is now in the darkness,” his son said. Separately, in May, imprisoned legal activist Cu Huy Ha Vu – the son of a revolutionary leader – also refused to eat for 25 days. Eventually, both detainees called off their hunger strikes after receiving key concessions – a tactic seen by some as part of the communist rulers’ strategy to manage dissent. “China and the USSR, they purged ruthlessly their competitors, killing many, sending them into exile,” said the formerly detained activist. “The Vietnamese Communist Party is cunning, wise. They do not see killing and imprisonment as the best solution [but] the last resort. Therefore their power may last longer.” – AFP

Reg. No. 1679/2013 in respect of “Class 05: Pharmaceutical preparations”. Fraudulent imitation or unauthorised use of the said Trade Marks will be dealt with according to law. Win Mu Tin, M.A., H.G.P., D.B.L for SANOFI P. O. Box 60, Yangon E-mail: Dated: 7 October 2013


Mitsubishi Electric Corporation, a corporation duly organized and existing under the laws of Japan, of 7-3 Marunouchi 2-chome, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, Japan, is the Owner of the following Trade Marks:-

Crystal Ice
Reg. No. 8847/2013 Reg. No. 8848/2013

Elevating Shelf Soft freezing Supercool Freezing
Reg. No. 8851/2013 in respect of “Class 11: Electric refrigerators”. Reg. No. 8849/2013

“I will continue my fight against corruption, attacking bureaucracy and stagnancy that are undermining our country.” The 42-year-old, who appeared in the dock looking tense and unhappy, was also given a $59,000 fine after a half-day trial. The US Embassy in Hanoi said it was “deeply concerned” by the verdict. “The use of tax laws by Vietnamese authorities to imprison government critics for peacefully expressing their political views is disturbing,” it said in a statement, calling for the release of all prisoners of conscience. When the ruling was announced, Mr Quan shouted “I object” before the television feed into the observation room where an AFP correspondent was sitting was cut off. Mr Le Quoc Quan, who blogged on a

Vitamin Factory

Reg. No. 8850/2013

Fraudulent imitation or unauthorised use of the said Trade Marks will be dealt with according to law. Win Mu Tin, M.A., H.G.P., D.B.L for Mitsubishi Electric Corporation P. O. Box 60, Yangon E-mail: Dated: 7 October 2013

Asia-Pacific World 39

NOTICE is hereby given that Beauty Community Public Company Limited a company organized under the laws of Thailand and having its principal office at 10/915 Nuanchan 34, Nuanchan, Buengkum, Bangkok, Thailand 10230 is the owner and sole proprietor of the following trademarks:-

(Reg: No. IV/7326/2013)

(Reg: No. IV/7327/2013)

(Reg: No. IV/7328/2013)

Sondi (right) sits with friends from Maharashtra State in a women-only carriage on a train from New Delhi’s Nizamuddin Station destined for Gondwana on September 19. Photo: The Washington Post

(Reg: No. IV/7329/2013)

Women-only spaces draw mixed reaction in India
ANNIE GOWEN IN the months since news of a gruesome gang rape riveted India, a “women-only” culture has been on the rise, with Indians increasingly seeking out women-only buses, cabs, travel groups and hotel floors. One city is preparing to open a women-only park. And in November, the government is launching a women-only bank it hopes will empower women financially. Despite heightened attention to the problem, reports of sexual violence are increasing. Many say the women-only spaces are a welcome refuge from lewd looks, groping and unwanted male attention. The concept appeals to women across a broad spectrum of Indian society, including a 60-year-old named Sarita, who recently travelled to New Delhi from a village in Maharashtra by train and said she still had to squabble with male passengers who tried to sit next to her in the women’s coach. “It’s the ways of men,” Sarita said. “They’re not good. How can we coexist?” But critics argue that the trend toward separation threatens the gains that women have made in education and access to new career fields over the past two decades as the economy has rapidly modernised. It’s the men who need to change their behaviour, they argue, not women. “It’s appalling,” said Jayati Ghosh, an economics professor at Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi. “It’s a way for a patriarchal society to announce it’s not going to protect women. It’s simply going to segregate women and restrict their freedom instead of securing it.” “Must banks too go pink?” the headline of an editorial in the Hindu, a leading newspaper, asked recently. Some women-only spaces – in trains on Delhi’s Metro system – had already existed before December, when a 23-year-old physical therapy student was gang-raped and injured so severely she later died. The country’s male-dominated culture is rooted in religious customs and societal norms that date back centuries, and the sexes were long kept separate in schools and temples. But the December 16 rape and subsequent death penalty sentences for the four attackers drew intense attention to the problem of sexual violence against women in India, where reports of rape have increased more than 25 percent in recent years, statistics show. Some women believe the harsh sentences will have little impact and feel the harassment problem is getting worse, forcing them to retreat. After the gang rape, state governments across India scrambled to do something – anything – that would calm a public increasingly agitated about sexual violence. They installed help lines for crime victims, more street lighting and better surveillance cameras. But it was the idea of creating more safe places for women that really caught the attention of bureaucrats. The city of Coimbatore, in the southern part of the country, announced plans to spruce up a decrepit park and limit it to women, who would also have access to a gym with a female fitness trainer. Localities from Assam to Odisha created womenonly bus lines. The Ministry of Tourism began pushing even small hotels to add female-only floors. director of the Centre for Social Research in New Delhi. “Women still have to come out and walk on the same streets and work in the same offices and shop in the same markets as men.” Limiting such spaces out of concern for women’s safety “is not at all a good message”, she said. “It encourages segregation and more violence.” One recent evening, Aishwarrya Kapoor, 20, a recent college graduate with a sociology degree, wanted to attend a birthday party at a club near a mall in downtown Delhi. As it happened, it was the same mall at which the victim in the gang rape had watched the movie Life of Pi with a male friend before heading home on a bus, where the attack occurred. Ms Kapoor’s mother was adamant: The young woman could go to the party only if she hired a cab driven by a female for the night. “Because in India, even though we are in the 21st century, with any [male] cab driver it’s not really safe,” the young woman said. The company Ms Kapoor hired, Sakha Cabs for Women, was founded in 2010 in Delhi and now has 12 female drivers, with 62 others in training. After the gang rape, its founders say, business increased 50 to 60pc, and they’re often booked several days in advance. One of the young drivers, a 21-year-old college student who goes by one name, Geeta, said she thinks her female clients feel more secure traveling with her than with a male. And yet: “I think it’s horrible women have to find watertight compartments, so to say,” Geeta said as she shifted gears and sped through Delhi’s clamorous traffic, horns honking in her wake. At 145 centimetres (4 feet 9 inches) tall and 45 kilograms (99 pounds), she has to sit on top of a tapestry pillow to see over the steering wheel. “There should be women in all walks of life and all fields of life where we don’t feel isolated,” she said. – The Washington Post

(Reg: No. IV/7330/2013)

(Reg: No. IV/7331/2013)

(Reg: No. IV/7332/2013)

Percentage of women in India with their own bank account And the government announced plans for a US$161 million banking system exclusively for women. The Bhartiya Mahila Bank will have a predominantly female staff and 25 branches across the country. It is set to be launched November 19, the birthday of Indira Gandhi, the former prime minister and the country’s most revered female icon. A spokesman for the finance ministry, DS Malik, said that the new bank is a “major step” toward correcting the gender inequity in credit and banking in India, where only 26pc of women have a bank account, compared with 44pc of men. But some women’s scholars and advocates don’t believe segregating the sexes is empowering, saying it could have a negative impact in the long run. “The attempt is to shrink women into limited spaces,” said Ranjana Kumari, the

(Reg: No. IV/7333/2013) The above eight trademarks are in respect of: Color Cosmetics: “brush on, eye brow, eye liner, eye shadow, foundation, lipstick, make up set, mascara, nail polish, powder” Skin care: “body moisturizer, body cleanser, body fragrance, body scrubs-mask massage, body special care, sun care, anti-wrinkle, anti-aging, acne, face cleansers, face scrubs-mask-massage, face skin care, lip balm, hand & foot care, hair special care, shampoo& treatment” Accessory: “beauty tools, brush & case, eye lash, cotton bud, sharpener, oil control paper, sponge” Any fraudulent imitation or unauthorized use of the said trademarks or other infringements whatsoever will be dealt with according to law. U Kyi Win Associates for Beauty Community Public Company Limited P.O. Box No. 26, Yangon. Phone: 372416 Dated: 7th October, 2013

‘The attempt is to shrink women into limited spaces. Women still have to come out and walk on the same streets and work in the same offices and shop in the same markets as men.’
Ranjana Kumari Centre for Social Research in New Delhi

40 World International


US sees progress in global fight against child labour
THE United States hailed “significant advancement” in 10 countries, mostly in Latin America and Asia, in combating the worst forms of child labour, in a report published on September 30. Three countries – Democratic Republic of Congo, Eritrea and Uzbekistan – were cited for government complicity in forced child labour. But in a 826-page report, the Department of Labour said half of the developing countries and territories it surveyed had made at least “moderate” progress towards eradicating child labour. Ten countries made “significant advancement”, including three Southeast Asian nations (Indonesia, the Philippines and Thailand) and five in Latin America (Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru). Ethiopia also made the grade, as did Gibraltar, one of several British overseas territories lumped together with developing nations for scrutiny by the Department of Labor’s Bureau of International Labor Affairs. In a first, the Department of Labor also removed three goods – charcoal from Namibia, diamonds from Zimbabwe and tobacco from Kazakhstan – from its running list of products made with child or forced labour. – AFP

Photo: AFP A car that was destroyed by demonstrators on October 2 sits outside the Russian Embassy in Tripoli.


Yemen troops retake army HQ
YEMENI troops have retaken a military headquarters in a deadly assault on al-Qaeda-linked militants who seized it last week and took a number of hostages, the defence ministry said on October 3. The operation on October 2, in which all the militants were “annihilated” and a stillunclear number of hostages killed, came two weeks after a spectacular series of ambushes on army posts in which more than 50 soldiers and police were killed. “The armed forces have successfully completed the assault on the headquarters of the Second Military Region at Mukalla and have thoroughly cleansed it of terrorist elements,” a defence ministry source was quoted by the official Saba news agency as saying. “All terrorists … in the building were annihilated,” the statement added, without announcing the fate of the captured troops. Medical and other military sources said at least 12 people, including five soldiers, were killed in the assault to retake the building in Mukalla in southeast Yemen. “We received [on October 2] the bodies of 10 people” killed in the attack, said a medical source at Ibn Sina public hospital in Mukalla. A military official confirmed earlier that at least three of the soldiers taken hostage were among the 10 dead. Gunmen from the al-Qaeda-affiliated Ansar al-Sharia group seized the complex on September 30 after a suicide bomber rammed a car into the entrance. The army soon retook most of the building except for the top floor, where the militants held the soldiers captive. – AFP

Two killed in attack on Russian embassy
IMED LAMLOUM TWO assailants were killed when protesters attacked Russia’s embassy in Tripoli, a Libyan minister said on October 3, while denying Moscow’s claims that it had evacuated the embassy on his request. “Two Libyans were killed in the attack” on October 2, said Libyan Foreign Minister Mohamed Abdelaziz, adding that he had urged embassy staff not to spend the night in the compound for fear of a second attack. Mr Abdelaziz gave no further details on the deaths in the attack, which appeared to have been triggered by reports that a Russian woman killed a Libyan army officer. Moscow said on October 3 it had evacuated its embassy staff from Libya after Mr Abdelaziz told the ambassador that Tripoli was unable to guarantee their safety and that they should be pulled out. “This is not true. We cannot make such a recommendation,” said Mr Abdelaziz, adding that he had “asked the Russian ambassador to leave the embassy and spend the night in a hotel or in a similar place”. “After a lengthy discussion, the ambassador received orders [from Moscow] not to leave the embassy and to leave the country in the morning, so we facilitated their departure,” the minister said. Moscow summoned a Libyan diplomat over the unrest, and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov spoke by phone to Mr Abdelaziz, demanding that Tripoli guarantee the protection of Russian nationals and embassy property. Earlier on October 3 all embassy staff and their family members crossed safely into Tunis. A Tunisian security official said 47 men, women and children had crossed the border and were staying in a hotel on the nearby island of Djerba. Dozens of protesters attempted to storm the embassy on October 2, setting alight a vehicle and causing some damage to the mission’s entrance gate. The incident came two days after conflicting reports emerged about the murder of a Libyan army officer in the Souk Juma district of Tripoli. Some sources said a Russian woman killed the officer for his role in the 2011 revolt against the regime of late dictator Moammar Gadhafi. Others said the woman was the wife of the slain man and that the motive for the killing was a marital dispute. Moscow said the embassy had been attacked by a “group of militants” after Russian Ekaterina Ustyuzhaninova killed a Libyan officer and stabbed his mother, adding that she had been arrested. Libyan authorities have struggled to impose security in the wake of the 2011 toppling of longtime dictator Gadhafi, which left a security vacuum with a patchwork of local militias operating across the country. – AFP

U n i t e d O v e r s e a s B a n k L i m i t e d , a company incorporated in Singapore of 80 Raffles Place, UOB Plaza, Singapore 048624, is the Owner and Sole Proprietor of the following Trademarks:-

(the above mark consists of the corporate logo of the Bank) Myanmar Reg. No. IV/5638/1995

(the above mark consists of the corporate logo of the Bank, together with English words “UNITED OVERSEAS BANK” and the Chinese characters which are equivalent to the English words “United Overseas Bank”) Myanmar Reg. No. IV/5639/1995

(the above mark consists of the Chinese characters which are equivalent to the English words “United Overseas Bank”) Myanmar Reg. No. IV/5640/1995

analyses (financial-); appartment house management; apartments(renting of-); appraisal(real estate-); administration of mutual funds; bail-bonding; banking; brokerage; capital investment; charitable fund raising; clearing (financial); clearing-houses (financial); collections (organization of-); credit bureaus; customs brokerage, debt collection agencies; deposits of valuables; estate agencies (real-); estate management (real); exchanging money; factoring; fiduciary services; financial analysis; financial clearing-house; financial loans; financing of loans; financial management; financial valuations; financing valuations; financing services; fire insurance underwriting; fiscal assessments; fiscal valuations; fund investments; guarantees; health insurance underwriting; housing agents; instalment loans, instalment loan financing; insurance brokerage; insurance underwriting; investment (capital-); issuing of travellers’ cheques; lease-purchase financing; leasing of farms; leasing of real estate; lending against security; life insurance underwriting; loans (financing); management (financial-); marine insurance underwriting; mortgage banking; mutual funds; organization of collections; real estate (leasing of -); real estate agencies; real estate appraisal; real estate brokers; real estate management; renting of apartments; renting of flats; safe deposit services; sale on credit; savings banks; securities brokerage; stocks and bonds brokerage; surety services; travellers’ cheques (issuing of-); trusteeship; valuables (deposits of-); valuations (financial-); valuations (fiscal-); trustee services.” Any fraudulent imitation or unauthorized use of the said Trademarks will be dealt with according to law. U Nyunt Tin Associates International Limited Intellectual Property Division Tel: 959 4500 59247-8, 951 375754, Fax: 951 254321 Email: For : United Overseas Bank Limited Dated: 7 October, 2013.

NOTICE is hereby given that Kia Motors Corporation of 231, Yangjae-dong, Seocho-gu, Seoul, Korea is the Owner and Sole Proprietor of the following trademark:-

(Reg: Nos. IV/422/1999 & IV/4187/2010) in respect of:- “Vehicles; apparatus for locomotion by land, air or water” Int’l Class: 12 Any fraudulent imitation or unauthorized use of the said trademark or other infringements whatsoever will be dealt with according to law. U Kyi Win Associates for Kia Motors Corporation P.O. Box No. 26, Yangon. Phone: 372416 Dated: 7th October, 2013

(the above mark consists of the words “United Overseas Bank”) Myanmar Reg. No. IV/5641/1995 in respect of “Financial, banking and other services associated with monetary affairs in this class; accident insurance underwriting; actuarial services;

International World 41

NOTICE is hereby given that Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd., of 2-9 Kanda-Tsukasamachi, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, Japan, is the Owner of the following Trade Marks:-

Berlusconi drops bid to oust govt in shock U-turn
DARIO THUBURN FORMER Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi last week abandoned his bid to topple Enrico Letta’s government in a humiliating climbdown after key allies rebelled against his leadership. “We have decided to vote for confidence, not without internal disputes,” Mr Berlusconi said before a confidence vote in parliament on October 2, called after he ordered his ministers to leave the cabinet. Mr Berlusconi said he had changed tack after hearing Mr Letta’s promise to lower taxes and was mindful of the need for reforms after calling for early elections just hours before. Mr Letta, who had been tipped to squeak home minutes before Mr Berlusconi’s U-turn, ended up sweeping the vote with a crushing majority of 235 senators in favour and 70 against. Mr Letta shook his head as he listened to Mr Berlusconi, who has dominated political life in Italy for much of the past two decades but whose influence has been on the decline. As the 77-year-old Mr Berlusconi left the parliament building, 100 protesters shouted “Go away!” while Mr Letta flashed a victory sign. The surprise about-turn was cheered by the markets, with shares in Milan jumping 1.45 percent, although they later closed up 0.68pc. The difference between rates on Italian 10-year government bonds and benchmark German ones – a measure of investor confidence – also narrowed to 253 basis points from 260 points on October 1. European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso hailed the Italian Senate’s vote as “decisive” not just for Italy but also for the eurozone and the European Union as a whole. “Political stability is vital for Italy, and it is therefore very positive that the Italian government will be able to continue uninterrupted with the reforms it has embarked on,” the head of the EU’s executive arm said. Giacomo Marramao, a politics professor at Roma Tre University, saw the day’s events as the final nail in Mr Berlusconi’s political coffin. “I think we are seeing the final chapter of

Reg. No. 5305/2013

Reg. No. 5306/2013

Italy’s Prime Minister Enrico Letta shows the “V for victory” sign after a speech at the lower house of parliament in Rome on October 2. Photo: AFP

Reg. No.5307/2013 in respect of “Int’l Class 3: soaps and detergents; dentifrices; tissues impregnated with cosmetic lotion ; soap in sheet form; shampoos; cosmetics and toiletries; perfumery; fragrances and incenses (other than perfumes used as cosmetics or toiletries); incenses and fragrances; false nails, false eyelashes”. Fraudulent imitation or unauthorised use of the said Trade Marks will be dealt with according to law. Win Mu Tin, M.A., H.G.P., D.B.L for Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. P. O. Box 60, Yangon E-mail: Dated: 7 October 2013

Berlusconi’s political life,” Mr Marramao said. Mr Letta had earlier urged lawmakers to vote for him, saying Italians were tired of pointless wrangling. “Italians are crying out that they cannot take any more blood in the arena, with politicians who slit each other’s throats and then nothing changes,” said Mr Letta, a 47-year-old moderate leftist.

‘I think we are seeing the final chapter of Berlusconi’s political life.’
Giacomo Marramao Roma Tre University

“Italy runs a risk that could be a fatal risk. Seizing this moment or not depends on us, on a yes or a no.” Several key figures from Mr Berlusconi’s People of Freedom Party (PDL) broke ranks with the billionaire media mogul after his

decision to call time on the government and pull his ministers from the cabinet on September 29. Roberto Formigoni, a PDL senator who broke ranks, said, “We were not traitors but pioneers. We were pioneers who showed the way forward that the PDL ended up following. We are proud of that because the government had to continue.” He said he and others would break away in parliament from Mr Berlusconi’s party. A letter doing the rounds in the Senate just before Mr Berlusconi spoke had 23 signatures of PDL senators willing to defy their leader. A similar document in the Chamber of Deputies, the lower house, had the signatures of 26 PDL lawmakers. Tensions within Italy’s coalition have spiked since Italy’s top court upheld a tax fraud conviction against Mr Berlusconi in August. These are likely to increase later this month as the Senate moves to expel the former prime minister over his conviction and bar him from the next elections. A judge is also due to rule on whether Mr Berlusconi should serve his one-year sentence for the fraud as house arrest or community service. – AFP

NOTICE is hereby given that Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd., of 2-9 Kanda-Tsukasamachi, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, Japan is the Owner of the following Trade Marks:-

Reg. No. 5303/2013 Reg. No. 5304/2013 in respect of “Int’l Class 5: pharmaceutical preparations; lacteal flour for babies; food for babies; beverages for babies; dietetic foods adapted for medical purpose; dietetic beverages adapted for medical purpose; supplements. Int’l Class 29: milk products; frozen vegetables; frozen fruits; processed vegetables and fruits; tofu: soya milk(milk substitute); curry; stew and soup mixes; raw pulses. Int’l Class 30 : tea; coffee and cocoa; ice; confectionery, bread and buns; ice cream mixes; sherbet mixes; cereal preparations; almond paste; instant confectionery mixes; flour for food; gluten for food. Int’l Class 32: beer; carbonated drinks; non-alcoholic fruit juice beverages; isotonic beverages; extracts of hops for making beer; whey beverages”. Fraudulent imitation or unauthorised use of the said Trade Marks will be dealt with according to law. Win Mu Tin, M.A., H.G.P., D.B.L for Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. P. O. Box 60, Yangon E-mail: Dated: 7 October 2013


Neo-Nazi leader jailed on criminal charges
JOHN HADOULIS THE leader of Greece’s Golden Dawn party was taken to a high-security prison on October 3 following his indictment on criminal charges as the government cracked down on the neo-Nazi group. Nikos Michaloliakos, the first Greek party leader to be jailed in three decades, was taken to Korydallos Prison in west Athens alongside one of his lawmakers and two more defendants after magistrates accused him of running a criminal organisation. They are being held there until their trial, a date for which has yet to be set. Four Golden Dawn lawmakers were charged on October 2 with membership in a criminal group. Greek authorities are moving to dismantle Golden Dawn – which has 18 members in the 300-seat parliament – after the shock murder of an anti-fascist musician on September 18. Magistrates also ordered that a local Golden Dawn leader allegedly involved in the murder of the hip-hop artist Pavlos Fyssas should also be held in custody, along with a female police officer accused of aiding the group. About 100 of the group’s supporters had gathered outside the court carrying Greek flags and chanting “Blood, honour, Golden Dawn”, when Mr Michaloliakos arrived to deliver his testimony on October 2. They applauded as the 56-year-old mathematician and former disciple of Greek dictator George Papadopoulos entered the court building. On October 2 four Golden Dawn lawmakers, including party spokesman Ilias Kassidiaris, were charged with belonging to a criminal organisation, in the first-ever indictment against neo-Nazi MPs in Greece. If convicted they face up to 10 years in prison. Three were conditionally released while the fourth, Yiannis Lagos, was placed in pretrial detention as police reportedly found he had spoken to members of a gang that ambushed Mr Fyssas on the night of his murder. Their release was seen as surprising given the gravity of the charges, but justice officials later stressed that it did not mean acquittal. “My recommendation to everyone is not to rush. We do not have any conclusive judicial ruling [yet],” said Deputy Prime Minister Evangelos Venizelos. The three freed lawmakers left the court in a combative mood, insulting and threatening reporters. Golden Dawn was the country’s third most popular party until Mr Fyssas’ murder sparked nationwide protests and a government crackdown on the group long accused of attacking immigrants, charges that it denies. Overall, some two dozen people – including six of the organisation’s 18 lawmakers, lower-ranking party members and three police officers – face charges ranging from attempted homicide and murder to illegal arms possession and belonging to a criminal organisation. Magistrates have compiled a large dossier on the group, whose leading lights the conservative-led government of Prime Minister Antonis Samaras wants to put behind bars. Golden Dawn denies all the accusations and says it is the victim of political persecution designed to stem its rise ahead of local elections next year. Once a fringe party, Golden Dawn capitalised on growing public discontent in a country hit hard by the economic crisis. It was first elected to parliament last year with nearly 7 percent of the vote. – AFP

Golden Dawn lawmaker Ilias Kasidiaris arrives at an Athens court on October 2. Photo: AFP

42 World International


Three men lynched by Madagascar mob
TSIRESENA MANJAKAHERY A MOB in Madagascar lynched two Europeans and a local man on October 3, suspecting them of murdering a young boy for his organs, authorities and witnesses said. Residents of tourist hotspot Nosy Be island went on a daylong rampage after a missing eight-year-old was reportedly found dead. “Rioters launched a manhunt and killed the Europeans” in the early hours of the morning, gendarmerie commander Guy Bobin Randriamaro said. Hours later in a nearby suburb, a Malagasy was also killed as mobs of hundreds of men roamed the streets, shuttering shops and setting fires. According to an AFP correspondent, the victim was dragged from a vehicle and his body thrown onto a fire. The two Europeans were identified only as Sebastien and Roberto. Local officials said both men were French, but witnesses said one may have been Italian. In Paris, foreign ministry spokesman Philippe Lalliot said, “Two foreigners have died and we have confirmation that at least one of them is French.” Local police commissioner Honoya Tilahizandry said the men “were killed and burnt on Ambatoloaka beach”, a popular palm-fringed stand ringed by bars and hotels. “They suspected the two foreigners of being behind the murder and trafficking human organs,” said Mr Randriamaro. Lying off the northern coast of Madagascar, the islet of Nosy Be is a magnet for European tourists who flock to the white sand beaches and seafood restaurants. Residents said the island had been tense for days before the mob attacks amid rumours of children disappearing. A local Italian restaurant owner, who asked not to be named, said residents “exploded in anger” when they heard about the discovery of the child’s body. “There’s no doubt that some children have disappeared. People have been talking about it for several days and notices were posted, with photos everywhere,” he said. Residents marched on the paramilitary police station on October 2, convinced one of the boy’s killers was being held there. – AFP

Greenpeace activists face piracy charge in Russia
ANNA MALPAS RUSSIAN investigators said on October 3 they had charged all 30 crew members of Greenpeace’s Arctic Sunrise ship with piracy over a protest against Arctic oil exploration, an offence that carries the risk of a lengthy prison term. A court in the northern city of Murmansk last month detained the crew members, including freelance journalists, for two months pending an investigation into their protest on an oil platform owned by energy giant Gazprom. “All 30 participants in the criminal case have been charged over the attack on the Prirazlomnaya platform,” the Investigative Committee said in a statement. “They are all charged with … piracy committed by an organised group.” Piracy by an organised group carries a prison sentence of up to 15 years in Russia. Investigators accused the activists of trying to seize property with threats of violence. The first 14 activists were charged on October 2 and the rest indicted October 3. Greenpeace denies the crew members – who come from 18 different countries, including Britain, Russia, New Zealand, Canada and France – committed any crime. “Our activists have been charged with a crime that did not happen,” Greenpeace International executive director Kumi Naidoo said in a statement. “A profound injustice is right now being perpetrated against our friends, our brothers and sisters, our sons and daughters who sit in Russian jails.”

‘Our activists have been charged with a crime that did not happen.’
Kumi Naidoo Greenpeace International

British Foreign Secretary William Hague has met with Greenpeace executive director John Sauven to discuss “the arrest of six British nationals”, his office said on October 3. Mr Hague has raised the issue with Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov, it said. “We would remain in close contact with all other nations whose citizens were involved,” Mr Hague was quoted as saying. Greenpeace spokesman Ben Ayliffe said one of the British activists had been taken ill prior to the October 3 hearing.

The September 18 protest saw several activists scale the oil platform in the Barents Sea to denounce Russia’s plans to drill in the Arctic. Russian border guards then lowered themselves onto the Dutch-flagged Arctic Sunrise from a helicopter, locked up the crew and towed the ship to Murmansk nearly 2000 kilometres (1200 miles) north of Moscow. Among those charged on October 3 was Russian freelance photojournalist Denis Sinyakov, a former AFP and Reuters staff photographer. The Kremlin’s council on human rights, an advisory body, said it was “extremely concerned” that the journalist covering the protest for a Russian online portal had been accused of piracy. “We unambiguously consider the arrest and the laying of the piracy charges against Denis Sinyakov as pressure on the media,” it said. Leading Russian media last month blacked out photographs on their websites in protest at his detention. Investigators on October 2 also charged a British freelance videographer. Those charged on October 3 included the ship’s captain, American Peter Willcox. He was the captain of Greenpeace’s Rainbow Warrior ship, which bombed by French agents in New Zealand in 1985. – AFP

NOTICE is hereby given that Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd., of 2-9 Kanda-Tsukasamachi, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, Japan, is the Owner of the following Trade Marks:Reg. No. 5315/2013


Gambia pulls out of Commonwealth
THE Gambian government announced on October 2 that the former British colony is pulling out of the Commonwealth with immediate effect, saying it would “never be a member of any neo-colonial institution”. “The general public is hereby informed that the government of the Gambia has left the Commonwealth of Nations with immediate effect,” it said in a statement. “[The] government has withdrawn its membership of the British Commonwealth and decided that the Gambia will never be a member of any neocolonial institution and will never be a party to any institution that represents an extension of colonialism.” The Commonwealth bloc is a voluntary association of more than 50 countries, many of them former territories of the British empire. A foreign ministry official said the decision came after the government rejected a proposal by the Commonwealth last year to create commissions in Banjul to protect human rights and media rights and fight against corruption. The proposal followed an April 2012 visit to Gambia by Commonwealth Secretary General Kamalesh Sharma, during which he met with President Yahya Jammeh. Mr Jammeh, who is regularly accused of rights abuses, has ruled mainland Africa’s smallest country with an iron fist since seizing power in a 1994 coup. Earlier this year, Gambia was singled out for its poor rights record in Britain’s annual Human Rights and Democracy report, which cited cases of unlawful detentions, illegal closures of newspapers and radio stations, and discrimination against minority groups. A spokesman at the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office said on October 3, “We would very much regret Gambia, or any other country, deciding to leave the Commonwealth.” – AFP

Reg. No. 5308/2013 Reg. No. 5316/2013 Reg. No. 5309/2013

Reg. No. 5317/2013 Reg. No. 5310/2013

Reg. No. 5311/2013

Reg. No. 5312/2013

Reg. No. 5318/2013 in respect of “Int’l Class 5 - dietetic foods adapted for medical purpose; dietetic drinks adapted for medical purpose; supplements. Int’l Class 32 - beer; carbonated drinks; non-alcoholic fruit juice beverages; isotonic beverages; extracts of hops for making beer; whey beverages”. Fraudulent imitation or unauthorised use of the said Trade Marks will be dealt with according to law. Win Mu Tin, M.A.,H.G.P.,D.B.L. for Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. P.O. Box 60, Yangon E-mail: Dated: 7 October 2013

Contact to 09420010788,09420010789,09420100178,01534644 Email:,

Senior Business Development Executive
(Based in Yangon) ▪ B.Sc in Chemistry or related Sciences or Marketing ▪ Minimum 3 years experience in sales/ marketing/business development preferably gained in the chemical industry,oil & gas, food or environment-related industries. ▪ Strong interpersonal and communication skills. ▪ Proficient in written & spoken English. ▪ Possess own transport and willing to travel. We offer competitive remuneration package (salary + commission) and career advancement opportunities to the successful candidate

Reg. No. 5313/2013

Reg. No. 5314/2013

Feature World 43

Muslim Brotherhood’s social work returns to the shadows
STEPHANIE MCCRUMMEN IN one of the strongest of the Muslim Brotherhood’s strongholds, where “no to the bloody coup” is sprayed on almost every soot-blasted block, an odd reality is settling in: Despite signs of its presence everywhere, the 85-yearold Islamist organisation is almost nowhere to be found. At a private school supposedly connected to the Brotherhood, “That’s all rumours,” said the deputy principal. On a dusty stoop in a nearby village where locals have long depended on the Brotherhood for everything from cooking oil to wedding funds to the sweeping of dirt streets: “The Muslim Brotherhood?” said a skinny man who quickly walked away. “I don’t want to talk politics.” A visit to this Nile River governorate suggests that a sweeping court ruling last month effectively banning the group and all its activities merely cemented the Muslim Brotherhood’s return to the shadows of Egyptian society, perhaps more damaged than ever. Since the popularly supported military coup that swept Mohammed Morsi from the presidency in July, government forces have killed hundreds of his Muslim Brotherhood backers, arrested thousands more – including the group’s top leaders – and waged a propaganda campaign to demonise Brotherhood members as terrorists.
Egyptian children wait to receive school supplies from a charity in Beni Suef, Egypt. Schools and charities in many villages have received help in the past from the Muslim Brotherhood. Photo: The Washington Post


An Egyptian boy rides a donkey in the village of Maymonia, Egypt, on September 19. Maymonia is one of many villages where Muslim Brotherhood charities helped poor people. Photo: The Washington Post

If the military-backed interim government follows through with the recent court-ordered ban, it would mean that authorities are willing to go even further than former president Hosni Mubarak did to crush the group. The ruling was written broadly and appears to apply not only to the Brotherhood’s political and religious work but also to the empire of hospitals, schools and charities that has been the basis of its support among millions of poor Egyptians for decades. “This is our social capital,” said a worried local official with the Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party, who at first gave his name but later pleaded that it not be published because, he said, security forces were investigating him. “We are afraid they will remove our people from these charities and bring others instead,” he said. “The situation is very sensitive.” Only a year ago, he was part of the Brotherhood network swept into power as voters in this agricultural governorate elected Mr Morsi’s Islamist allies to 14 out of 18 parliamentary seats. They also gave Mr Morsi two-thirds of their votes in the first presidential election following the 2011 ousting of Mr Mubarak. Now the official sleeps in a different place nearly every night to avoid local security forces that have arrested dozens of local Brotherhood members. Among those arrested were wealthy individuals who funded charities, doctors who helped treat the poor, teachers who instructed kids in the Koran, and engineers who repaired houses, power lines and sewer systems in the poorest neighbourhoods and villages, he said. The Brotherhood, meanwhile, preemptively shuttered its most visible projects, including a program to deliver school supplies.

“The people here need a lot of help,” said the official. He suggested visits to what he described as a local charity that was picking up the slack in the Brotherhood’s absence and to a Brotherhoodaffiliated school. The official got into his car and drove down a dirt-packed road to a building where the corridors were filled with hundreds of kids and moms clamouring for school supplies, families that normally would have been helped by the Brotherhood, he said. “Please don’t mention the name of the Brotherhood,” he cautioned, walking into office of the charity director. “Just say, maybe, ‘What kind of work do you do?’” The advice didn’t matter because

‘There is a lot of fear right now. Anything with the Islamic name is under suspicion.’
Official at Dawa al-Islamiya school

the director refused to say anything. Nearby was the allegedly Brotherhood-affiliated school, called Dawa al-Islamiya, which local residents said was raided recently by security forces claiming there were weapons inside. Several teachers were arrested. Now workers were sweeping its outdoor walkways, and administrators were preparing for the start of the school year. Asked about the raid, the arrests and the implication that it was a

Brotherhood school, the deputy principal was adamant: “This is not right at all,” he said stiffly. “This school is under supervision of the Ministry of Education.” Outside, another school official whispered a slightly different explanation; he said the ministry had pushed out many Brotherhood officials and taken control of the school. “There is a lot of fear right now,” he said. “Anything with the Islamic name is under suspicion.” After a while, the Freedom and Justice Party official suggested it might be easier to find people willing to talk in a nearby village. And in scruffy Maymonia, where cabbage leaves and plastic bottles blew along dirt roads, it was. Many locals said the Brotherhood used to offer lots of help but that more recently, the rice and oil and gifts for kids came as part of campaigns for political candidates. “They were also helping themselves,” said Mahmoud Sayed Abdulla, 40, sitting on a stoop in front of his juice shop. He and others pointed across the street to the office of a former Muslim Brotherhood parliamentarian, Mohamed Shaker el-Deeb, who used to help people with money for weddings and funerals. Since Mr Morsi was ousted, Mr Deeb had disappeared, and the office was closed. Mohamed Saad, a businessman from a wealthy local family, said Mr Deeb had been widely respected, but the Brotherhood’s reputation as a whole has suffered. “They used to work very well here, but after they reached the chair,” he said, referring to the presidency, “they lost it.” Asked who might take up their work, Mr Saad pointed to an elderly man sweeping the street with a short broom. “We will,” he said. – The Washington Post

Bogota Colombian ambassador quits over sex claims
Mr Amador insisted the allegations were a “hoax” fabricated by “groups with political interests that want to destroy me and finish me”. Mr Amador said he was returning to Bogota to confront the “ghosts” who were behind the claims, which he described as “overwhelming”. He did not provide details of the allegations. victims of “cyber espionage” and suggested the US National Security Agency may be to blame. Recent revelations by former intelligence contractor Edward Snowden have exposed the NSA’s far-reaching electronic surveillance of phone records and internet traffic. “This news does not surprise us. On the contrary, it confirms what we have been saying,” the rebels said. “We have been the victims of sabotage and espionage for a long time, especially when it comes to using virtual communications to express our ideas and reasons to fight.”

Colombia’s ambassador to Russia, Rafael Amador, said on October 2 he has resigned in order to fight allegations accusing him of “sexual blackmail”. Mr Amador told Caracol radio station from Moscow he was stepping down after two years to return to Colombia to challenge the claims against him. “It’s very difficult to respond to these allegations while performing my duties as ambassador,” Mr Amador told Caracol as he explained his decision.

Brasilia Brazil’s native protesters try to break into Congress

Havana Colombia’s FARC claims US spying on rebels

Colombia’s leftist FARC guerrillas said on October 2 they have been

Some 300 indigenous protesters tried to force their way into Brazil’s Congress on October 2 to demand respect for their land rights but were thwarted by police. Police tightened security around the legislature and even used pepper spray as the natives – adorned with feathers and traditional garb, and carrying spears and arrows – raced to try to get inside. “There were about 300 indigenous people in the protests outside Congress. They tried to break in

but were stopped by police who had to use pepper spray,” a military spokesman said. The protesters later regrouped near the Congress building and blocked traffic. Hundreds of indigenous people from across the country travelled to Brasilia last week to protest against bills that they said would jeopardise recognition of their ancestral lands to the benefit of powerful white landowners. Indigenous people represent 1 percent of Brazil’s population of more than 200 million and occupy 12pc of the national territory, mainly in the Amazon. – AFP







Moe Set Wine has secured the title of Miss Universe Myanmar 2013. Photo: Aung Htay Hlaing



the pulse 45

Pomp and pageantry as Miss Universe Myanmar crowned
AFTER more than 50 years of not participating in the global beauty pageant, Myanmar has chosen a new Miss Universe Myanmar in Moe Set Wine (pictured left). The 25-year-old, who is a business graduate and was educated in the United States, said the event (held at the National Theater in Yangon on October 3) was an unforgettable experience. “I will never forget this, I’m so happy and there are no words to express how happy I am,” Moe Set Wine said. A total of 20 contestants fronted the judges in the final round, parading in traditional dress, one-piece swimming costumes and evening gowns. And when the contestants took part in the swimsuit competition it seemed as if many members of the crowd were looking intently at the numbers pinned on the women’s waists. But some of the contestants showed nerves, having never appeared before a crowd in their swimsuit. Moe Set Wine collected two other titles on the night: Miss Famous and Miss Healthy Skin. Thein Yu Wai, general manager of the Hello Madam Media group responsible for running public relations for the event, said votes were sent in by telephone from September 17 to October 3. Htoo Foundation was the major sponsor of the event, while “bsc” fashion provided make-up, swimwear and shoes for contestants. The evening dresses donated by Ein Gyin Khaing silk shop featured designs by Myo Min Soe and Htay Htay Tin. Miss Universe Myanmar received K10 million in prize money, as well as a Honda car, with the first runner up receiving K5 million and the second runner-up K2.5 million. The rest of the top 10 were given K300,000 each. Moe Set Wine says her motivation now is to improve her English and to work out more so that she’s physically and mentally prepared for the major global event being held in Moscow on November 9. “I will also be mindful of my manners now that I’m representing Myanmar. I have to promote our country and culture,” she added. – Lwin Mar Htun

Tension and nerves show backstage as contestants prepare to take part in the Miss Universe Myanmar 2013 beauty pageant. Photos: Ruben Salgado Escudero

To bare or not to bare?
As Myanmar continues to make changes economically, exposure to international culture is challenging ingrained concepts of what is and what isn’t acceptable, especially in relation to just how much skin women should reveal


S the nervous young contestants traipse onto the stage on stilt-like heels, they begin to remove the sarongs wrapped over their swimsuit-clad bodies. There is a pause and a hushed silence as audience members digest what they are seeing, forgetting to clap in encouragement. Then, slowly, a few claps help start the applause and set the contestants on their way down the catwalk. Scenes of scantily-clad bodies parading in swimwear haven’t been seen in Myanmar for more than five decades. The crowd at the Miss Universe Myanmar 2013 contest may have been encouraging, but the competition rounds of recent pageants in

the country haven’t been welcomed by everyone. Khun Sint Nay Chi, an actress who herself was a beauty contestant in local pageants during her younger years, says the re-emergence of beauty contests in the country may be influencing young women in the wrong way. While she encourages a more open society where woman feel they can wear what they want, she says the competition is too image-driven. “Myanmar women are traditional curvy,” she said. “They are not always tall either, and we are trying to compete internationally. The girls are slimming down too fast and look weak rather than toned and healthy.” She said that in her youth the focus was on elegance and confidence as much as it was on beauty. And intelligence was key.

“I had to wear a longyi and a blouse, our traditional Myanmar costume,” she said. “But we also had to study general knowledge and show off our language skills – not like now.” Khun Sint Nay Chi said health and fitness training were also lacking for this year’s Miss Myanmar Universe competition. “I accept that being slimmer these days is more attractive than the curves that I grew up thinking were beautiful, but the girls just don’t appear anywhere near as confident as they should. There seems to be a lot of pressure.” She added that contestants should also be given training to mentally prepare for the level of competition waiting for them on the international circuit.
Continued on page 49 A disappointed contestant notifies her family she hasn’t won. Photos: Ruben Salgado Escudero

46 the pulse


Artists sharpen their skills before 2014 ASEAN
‘I’m very happy to participate as I’ve wanted to perform on stage for a long time now, but I was never given the opportunity before.’
Ko Aung Lwin blind comedian

A festival showcasing artists and performers with disabilities will celebrate some hidden talents and draw attention to the challenges faced by those with physical disabilities in the lead-up to the ASEAN Disability Arts Festival 2014
NUAM BAWI A FESTIVAL showcasing the work of disabled artists will be held later this month, with organisers saying it will serve as preparation for a larger international event to be held in Myanmar next year. Anegga Yaung Sin (Immeasurable Spectrum) runs October 17 to 19 at Yangon’s Myanmar Convention Center. It’s being organised by the Department of Social Welfare along with the Myanmar Independent Living Initiative (MILI), a locally based NGO. Events will include singing, dancing, music, painting and sculpting competitions. Representatives from every state and region will participate, and the winners will receive extra training ahead of the ASEAN Disability Arts Festival, which Myanmar will be hosting as ASEAN chair mid-2014. Organisers said they regularly mark International Day of Disabled Persons on December 3 but the festival happening later this month is the first time anything has been done on such a large scale. U Aung Tun Khaing, deputy director general of the Department of Social Welfare, told The Myanmar Times that the festival’s size makes it an achievement in itself, though it’s also something of a stepping stone to next year’s even larger event. “Myanmar will be the host for the ASEAN Disability Arts Festival in the middle of 2014, so this will be practice and preparation for that festival.” He said both gatherings will give disabled artists a much-needed venue to display their best work. “And this will be training for them for the leading role [in next year’s festival],” U Aung Tun Khaing said. Ko Aung Lwin is one of the participants, who’ll be performing a comedy act. “I’m very happy to participate as I’ve wanted to perform on stage for a long time now, but I was never given the opportunity before,” he said. An injury as a ten-year-old in 1990, caused one of his eyes to become blind. Over the years, the sympathetic nerve in his other eye also deteriorated and lost vision. He has been working as an audio editor, with the help of the Myanmar Independent Living Initiative, and says while he is capable in his job, daily life can be challenging. “I’ve been living in the dark for a long time, so I have learnt to cope with most things. But I still face difficulties if I want to go out,” he said. “I always need someone’s help.” U Aung Tun Khaing also said that disabled people face many unnecessary limitations because of their physical environment and cultural biases that still linger in Myanmar. “In the past, when a family has a disabled child, we had a concept that the family is very unlucky and they are bearing and suffering the consequences of past sins. And people looked at disabled people as pitiful people,” he said. He said beliefs have improved but society still has work to do in removing barriers for all disabled people. “For example, a person who uses a wheelchair will need to have access to buildings and sidewalks. These issues are prioritised internationally, but in Myanmar we still have barriers for disabled people everywhere. It’s still not barrier-free.”

Survival and the art of recycling
Ko San Zaw Htwe arranges artwork he has created from recycled goods. Photo: Zarni Phyo



LONE in his whitewashed cell, he yearned for colour. Jailed for 35 years at the age of 24, Ko San Zaw Htwe was a poet, not a painter. But during his life behind bars he learned to make best of what was available. He created artwork made of garbage. “I imagined talking to the colours,” he said simply. He had nothing else to do. Born in 1974 as the youngest of

six children, Ko San Zaw Htwe was the only one to attend university, where he studied history. His offence was taking part in a demonstration in favour of forming a parliamentary democracy. He was eventually released after 13 years in the amnesty proclaimed by President U Thein Sein in 2011. “I used to hang a basket in front of my cell where other prisoners would put old packaging materials and rubbish,” he said. Next he needed glue and scissors. Metal objects with sharp points are not readily available in prison.

“I got the scissors in exchange for instant coffee mix, which we used for currency, and kept them well hidden,” he said. He had to hide his pictures too, under his bed or under the other prisoners’ beds. The prison authorities destroyed any artwork they found, including those he tried to send back home. “In prison, I was afraid of becoming brain-dead because there was nothing to do. I wrote poems at first. Then I tried to paint. Finally, I decided to create recycled art when I could not get hold of watercolours,

oil paints and canvas. I got the idea from reading about Ko Htain Linn’s recycled art show while I was in prison. He creates by recycling paper and painting on it. I created pictures from colourful packaging materials,” he said. After a change of governor, the authorities became more lenient toward his art. “They asked me to make pictures for the prison library. I made two. After that, they let me do more,” he said. Survival in Prison, the documentary about Ko Sann Zaw Htwe by director Yee Nann Thike, was

awarded the Aung San Suu Kyi prize for human rights and human dignity (in June this year). “I found his creation in a gallery at the British Club in Yangon in December 2012 and decided to make the documentary,” said Ko Yee Nann Thike. Ko Sann Zaw Htwe’s works are currently displayed at the Pansodan Gallery. Some of his pictures are formed from plastic bags; others feature the wings of white ants. “I think recycling helps us take fewer resources from nature,” he said. He is now teaching art at the Network International School in Yangon.

48 the pulse local


What travel guides leave out
First-time author explains everything from betel-chewing to astrology in new book


ZON PANN PWINT OR visitors from other countries, Myanmar is a place of beautiful and sometimes bewildering habits. It’s impossible to take everything in with only one visit: Indeed, you can live here for years, as some foreigners do, and still be surprised to learn of a tradition or ritual which, for those born here, may simply seem like common sense. With habits being passed down orally from generation to generation, outsiders observing local customs may sometimes find it difficult to parse what’s going on without pulling aside a local confidante who is patient enough to explain things. Fortunately, a new book published in English last week is the perfect guide for those less interested in hitting tourist hotspots and more interested in delving into the country’s real heart: its people. Culture & Beyond: Myanmar, by first-time Yangon author Meiji Soe, is a comprehensive survey of birth, death and everything in between – even beyond, with chapters covering Buddhist reincarnation, nat spirits and even ghosts. Originally intended for her own children, the book is also ideal for foreigners, whether visiting briefly or living here long-term. And no doubt even Myanmar people will learn something from it they didn’t know, or be reminded of something they had forgotten. Culture and superstition are often inseparable in the country, Meiji Soe writes in the foreword. Nonetheless, she divides the book into two sections, with the first written in a straightforward guidebook style about essential cultural knowledge, and the second

Originally intended for her own children, the book is also ideal for foreigners, whether visiting briefly or living here long-term
saw an advertisement in The Myanmar Times in which Sarpay Beikman – formerly the Burmese Translation Society and now part of the Ministry of Information’s Printing and Publishing Enterprise – put out a call for cultural manuscripts by local authors writing in English. The competition was just the inspiration Meiji Soe needed to finish up the book. “I was much encouraged by the news. As my collection grew, I started to edit and add in the history of the cultural heritage such as a brief history of Shwedagon Pagoda, the origins of mythical creatures on the pagoda platform, and Myanmar customs, proverbs and ritual ceremonies.” The book, which took three years to research and write, won third prize in the 2011 Sarpay Beikman Manuscript Awards, and was published last week by Myanmar Consolidated Media. “The teachings and sayings of elders never die,” she said. But she also added that the process of writing about them has been a long and unexpected journey. “One of my elders once said if you are in a hurry, use the old road. It means the new road is not familiar to us and delays may occur.”

Meiji Soe writes explains Myanmar’s cultural idiosyncracies in her book, Culture and Beyond Myanmar . Photo: Supplied

‘As a Myanmar writer, I wrote about our culture from the bottom of my heart’
Meiji Soe, author

bringing in personal experiences (and hearsay) to illustrate the role that superstitions and beliefs play in daily life. The result is a lively mix of information and anecdote – in other words, a perfectly Myanmar style. “I’d listened to old people talk about beliefs and superstitions since I was young,” Meiji Soe said, when asked how the book came to be. “As I grow older, I become aware that some of these have been true in my life.” Because the superstitions and beliefs that her elders passed on to her have played a positive role in her life, she started to write them down from memory and collect them from others so that her children will know of them when they get old. “As I grow older, I gain more and more respect for what the elders pass down. I take it seriously. I believe what they say is true,” she said. Over three years, she dug deeper into beliefs and superstitions among the Myanmar people. The project kept growing, with her own experiences reinforcing the importance of getting it all down on the page. “Whenever remarkable coincidences happened in my life, a wish to record these incidences appeared in

my mind. And I was afraid my poor memory would forget it all one day so I had to document it straight away.” She said she learned many new things herself while researching the book. “Most people don’t know why these two big lions are sitting at pagoda gates. They think they are placed as decoration. But they [the chin-theik] have a grief-stricken history and I felt sad as I wrote about them.” There have been books written in the past about Myanmar customs by foreigners, particularly the British, some of whom were eager to document the local customs they encountered during the colonial era. “When I read cultural books Englishmen wrote, I found their angles very interesting. They wrote about some things Myanmar readers don’t even notice.” Her own book, however, is very

much written from inside the culture. “As a Myanmar writer, I wrote about our culture from the bottom of my heart, after feeling them and being involved in them as a Myanmar,” Meiji Soe said. For example, one popular belief in Myanmar is that if a tea stem is left standing up in the tea cup, a visitor will drop in at your house. This once happened to Meiji Soe when she saw a tea stem standing up and later that day a long-lost friend dropped by to see her. Other topics covered in the book include superstitions related to pregnancy, childbirth, bridges and railways, trips and travelling, pagodas and heavenly beings, prosperity and poverty, making an oath, death and burial, and even dream interpretation. She said she didn’t think of the project as a published book until she

Radio station celebrates 4th anniversary
PADAMYAR FM has marked its 4th anniversary by holding a singing contention and a ceremony in which they donated audio books to the State School for the Blind in Kyeemyindine township on October 4. “As we work in radio, the best thing we could think of was to create audio books for these children,” said Daw Thi Thi Oo, senior programmer at Padamyar FM. Padamyar FM has donated audio books to schools for the blind in Yangon, Myitkyina in Kachin State, Sagaing Region and Pakhoku in Mandalay Region, every anniversary since it was founded. “Each year, we compile recordings of radio programs which have entertainment and edutainment values to help the blind gaining general and literary knowledge,” she said. One of the programs contains a literary talk where books are read aloud, and covere a wide range of genres, followed up by discussions and thoughts as to the narrative and style of the books. “Through listening to audio books, they can learn a lot. There are even science and general knowledge quizzes like, why people feel cold when

A student competes in the Padamyar FM song contest. Photo: Boothee

the temperature drops,” Daw Thi Thi Oo added. In the singing contest component, students from the State School for the Blind and the Yangon Education Center for the Blind in Mayangone township took part. One of the students, Htin Lin Aung, was born blind, and is considered a musical prodigy, having won a

singing contest organised by MRTV in the past. His disability hasn’t deterred him from being ambitious and he is grateful for the talent that he has. “I want to be a singer, keyboard player and a computer technician,” Htin Lin Aung said. “I love singing and I think my good voice is a blessing from God.” – Zon Pann Pwint

the pulse local 49

Myanmar’s “Colourful Garden” will represent the 2013 SEA Games


SONG that celebrates Myanmar’s diverse population and culture has been chosen to represent the 2013 SEA Games. “Younsone Ooyin” (The Colourful Garden) written by Linn Htet and

sung by two well-known, local singers – Htoo Al Lynn and Sone Thin Par – was picked to be the official song of the 27th SEA Games, to held this December in Myanmar. The song is a mix of pop and rock that incorporates the use of several traditional instruments, a choir and a band into its melody. Songwriter Linn Htet said winning the prize has been a huge personal achievement, as he began writing the song with only K30,000 (US$30) in his pocket. “The [production] cost was

nearly K100,000,” Linn Htet told The Myanmar Times. “At that time, the studio owner U Than Win Aung let me record for free and said that I could consider it a ‘prize for myself ’. I’m really thankful to him and the success of this song does not belong to me alone. It’s all because of the people who helped me at that time,” he said. “The Colourful Garden” beat out five other finalists. More than 300 songs were submitted to the committee as part of the competition. The six finalists will be included

in the album, We Love SEA Games, which will be distributed this coming October prior in anticipation of the event. Minister for Sport, U Tint San, said that organisers tried to make the contest as open as possible to people of all ages and backgrounds. “We built the Song Selecting and Creating Committee with senior musicians and we selected the theme songs step by step,” U Tint San said. “The Colourful Garden”, he said, scored the highest points from both

the committee and the public, who were able to vote via telephone. U Myint Moe Aung, one of the committee members said there was a lot of responsibility weighing on their shoulders to get the public relations aspect right. “We’re taking as much care as possible to make sure that we don’t offend anyone and choose something that people will think is inappropriate,” he said. “And if things go wrong, I’m sure there are many people who would want to blame us for it.”

Continued from page 45

L Khun Yee, deputy chairwoman of Myanmar Women Sports Federation, wants international beauty pageants to fall under the sporting body, so they can help physically train the women. “Sporting events have very strict rules around diet and exercise,” she said. “We should be involved with providing the right information.” But while L Khun Yee is an advocate for health and fitness, she’s criticised the controversial decision to parade in swimwear. She says while it may be appropriate on an international scale, the decision to do it publicly in Myanmar was the wrong one. There was scandal last month when Khin La Pyae Zaw, the Myanmar contestant in Miss Tourism Queen International 2013, turned up to a press launch on September 21 in just her bikini and acquired crown. While her role as Miss Tourism Queen International would be to highlight tourism and leisure in Myanmar and around the region – probably some of which would include destinations at the beach – turning up in a two-piece proved too much for some. As a direct result of the reaction from audiences to the Miss Tourism press launch, the Miss Universe pageant organisers at Hello Madam decided the bikini was too risqué, and opted for the one-piece in the end. Yet even that’s causing a stir.

“Who would dare to wear a swimsuit out – as a local?” L Khun Kee asked. “In Myanmar, we’re used to wearing clothing when we swim. So it’s difficult for us to suddenly accept this.” As a former judge in local beauty contests, she agrees with Khun Sint Nay Chi that the contestants need more general knowledge and public speaking training. “Myanmar women are honest and they’ve never had to experience this [public questioning] before,” she said. “It’s difficult for them to answer questions so directly.” Myanmar Academy Awardwinning actress, Khin Zar Chi Kyaw, says she feels sorry for those who’ve had to bare their skin to judges and audiences throughout the competition. “It’s difficult to be so publicly exposed and I can’t imagine anyone would want to do this so readily,” she said. “It’s totally acceptable internationally but it is all very new here.” But she also felt some parts of the competition carried positive messages which could help broaden people’s frames of reference and show Myanmar’s cultural development. “The styles are changing, of course,” she said. “As Myanmar is starting to push forward and make changes, not everyone will accept them – but there should be an understanding that some women may want to break through the social boundaries.”

Plunging neckline ‘edited’ in, says model
NANDAR AUNG A HIGH-PROFILE model has lashed out at a fashion magazine for putting an “unseemly” picture of her on the front page, which she says was digitally manipulated. But the journal, Celebrities 8 days, denies using edited pictures. Mya Hnin Yee Lwin says she will quit modelling after criticism from her family and “rude words” from former fans who posted nasty comments on her Facebook page. The décolleté photograph, which would strike traditional Myanmar readers as revealing, appears in the journal’s September 26 issue. Mya Hnin Yee Lwin says the use of the picture has “disgraced” her. “I tried to contact the journal because I thought they wouldn’t use my original photo on the front page,” she said. “The dress was low-cut at the front but I thought they would be editing that out – not editing the neckline even lower! “They should have chosen another photo if that photo was unseemly. I am in trouble with my parents because they put that picture on the front page. I’ve received comments on my internet page calling me ‘unzipped Mya Hnin Ye Lwin’, ” said the model. Ma Mya Hnin Yee Lwin said Celebrities 8 days did apologise to her via telephone and said they would issue an apology in the journal on October 4. Instead, she says they issued a state-

Mya Hnin Yee Lwin in the controversial cover of 8 Days. Photo: Boothee

ment with an apology from her to the audience, which was not what she had requested. “I’m prepared to complain to Myanmar Press Council about this,” she said. Ma Mya Hnin Yee Lwin had posed in the photograph for photographer Ko Aye Zaw Moe in Hlaw Ka National Park in Mingaladon, Yangon, the week before the image was published. “I shot a lot of photos that day with

Mya Hnin,” said Ko Aye Zaw Moe. “I took the pictures at noon and she was in a hurry to get back, so she didn’t look her pre-photos. “But the journal chose the unseemly one as a cover photo. I know that was unseemly from a traditional point of view.” A spokesperson for Celebrities 8 days said the journal did not publish edited photos.

50 the pulse tea break
Universal Crossword
Edited by Timothy E. Parker



ACROSS 1 Rubdown target 5 Safer alternative to a saber 9 Roy in “The Natural” 14 Dutch South African 15 Angie Dickinson’s big, bad role 16 Concerning the ears 17 Unit of Chinese currency 18 Writer Murdoch 19 Totally ticked off 20 Cause one to sink or swim? 23 Took in, as a movie 24 Shooting star 25 Brownie topping, sometimes 27 Snoopy is one 31 Aid a felon 34 Anesthetist’s choice 38 Boat front 39 ___ farewell (said goodbye) 40 Fail to pay, as taxes 41 Purge 42 Fiji’s neighbor 43 One may require stitches 44 It may have a nice melody 45 Call from the mountains 46 Butter’s rival 47 Make oneself loved 49 Read, as a bar code 51 Part of the former Yugoslavia 56 Failed to participate in (with “out”) 58 Completely 62 Celebrate and then some 64 Outward glow 65 Word with “sea” or “season” 66 Cover up some roots 67 Potentially slanderous remark 68 A lion has one 69 It’s posted around the neighborhood 70 Ready to be hit, as a golf ball 71 “Family Ties” role for Michael DOWN 1 Wide gulf 2 Four-door alternative 3 Capacity for sympathy 4 “Sesame Street” puppet 5 Asylum seeker, perhaps 6 Beginning for “normal” or “legal” 7 “___ and the Detectives” (Old children’s book) 8 Opposite of difficulty 9 Japanese poem 10 “My” cousin 11 Instrumental ensemble 12 ___ thousand (go 4-for-4, e.g.) 13 Did in the dragon 21 Titled peer 22 From the beginning 26 No-no 28 Cook’s cover-up 29 Monotonous work 30 Rural retreat 32 Border line 33 Pond-dwelling duck 34 Brand of building blocks 35 Avocado’s shape 36 Business school topic 37 Created for a specific purpose, like a committee 42 44 48 50 52 53 54 55 56 57 59 60 61 63 Pros’ opposites Parodied (with “up”) On, as a plane Fall bloom A most diminutive opening Country in the Himalayas Dancer Castle Architect’s wing Feudal field hand Figure skating feat Right, on many a map Hinny’s counterpart Opposite of false Caustic drain-opener








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The tea break page is being re-formatted in readiness for our move to a daily cycle. It may look something like this in the future. Our market research shows that a page like this attracts a large number of readers, who loyally read it every day. Ring Khin Thandar Htay our National Sales Director to book this space permanently and laugh all the way to the bank with the extra business coming in your door.

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the pulse food and drink 51


Stir-fries with Cambodianstyle green peppercorns
STIR-FRIED CHICKEN WITH GREEN PEPPERCORNS (SERVES 4) 450-500 grams boneless chicken breast 45-50 grams green peppercorns 3 cloves garlic, crushed 2 small onions, cut into 8 pieces each 1 small carrot ½ teaspoon brown sugar ¼ teaspoon grated ginger 2 tablespoons Japanese soy sauce 2 tablespoons vegetable oil 1 tablespoon Chinese cooking rice wine A handful of coriander leaves Salt PREPARATION Wash the chicken and dry. Then, thinly slice and marinate with soy sauce for at least half an hour. Peel the carrots and cut into small cubes. Set aside. Heat the wok and vegetable oil, using high heat. When the oil becomes hot, sauté the onions. When the onions are translucent, add carrots and fry for 2 minutes. Stir the ingredients constantly so that they don’t stew. Bring the garlic, chicken, ginger, green peppercorns to fry. Salt to taste. When the chicken sizzles, pour the rice wine over the stir-fry and fry for 1 more minute. Turn off the heat and cover the wok with a lid for 3 to 4 minutes. Serve SHOPPING Green peppercorns are occasionally available at City Mart. TIP If green peppercorns are not available, roasted black peppercorn works well with this recipe. Two tablespoons of black peppercorns might be needed. Make sure to crush the roasted peppercorns a little bit to give the dish more flavour and a nice aroma. FOODIE QUOTE “If you really want to make a friend, go to someone’s house and eat with him … The people who give you their food give you their heart.” – Cesar Chavez, American-Mexican civil rights activist NEXT WEEK Recipes with eggs


batch of fresh green peppercorns caught my eye this week while shopping for groceries. I love green peppercorns for their taste, which isn’t overpowering, but offers just a subtle hint of heat. Fresh peppercorns are better than the pickled variety from a jar. The pickled peppercorns are a bit too sour and don’t have that lovely heat to them. In Cambodia, green peppercorns are very popular and are often used when cooking crab because of its delicate flavours. Green peppercorns also pair well with other seafood and white meats, like chicken and pork. This week, I have prepared a dish that is fragrant, warm and peppery. STIR-FRIED PRAWNS WITH GREEN PEPPERCORNS (SERVES 4) 8 tiger prawns 45-50 grams green peppercorns 3 cloves garlic, crushed ½ teaspoon brown sugar 2 teaspoons Japanese soy sauce 1½ tablespoons vegetable oil A handful of coriander leaves Salt

Duck egg omelette with su poke ywak curry. Photo: Phyo

Stir-fried prawns with green peppercorns. Photos: Phyo

PREPARATION Take the prawn heads off, and deshell and de-vine the prawns. Rinse and drain well. On a medium heat, heat the vegetable oil in a wok. When the oil is hot, fry the garlic until the garlic becomes a golden colour. Add prawns, green

peppercorns, soy sauce and sugar. Increase the heat to high, stirring the wok constantly. Salt to taste, although it may be salty enough with the soy sauce. After 6-7 minutes of frying, the prawns should become opaque and curve into a semicircle, meaning they are ready to serve. Garnish with coriander on top.

Wine Review
Penfolds Koonunga Hill 2011, Semillon Sauvignon Blanc

Introduce yourself to the tastes of Japan
MOH MOH THAW “MINGALABA” is neither an English greeting, like the name of the restaurant, nor Japanese, like the food it serves, but on a recent visit to Japanese restaurant Hello we were greeted warmly with it as soon as we came through the door. The friendly server then showed us to a table rather than leaving us to cast about for one ourselves – always a good way to earn a few extra hospitality marks in my books. The room itself was as comfortable as our table. The restaurant is located on busy Narnatdaw Road, but inside feels quiet and relaxed, with a cosy size that’s neither cramped nor cavernous. The decorations are tasteful rather than ornate. Of course, it’s not the furnishings that bring me here so regularly, but the attention to detail is a big part of the success of any memorable Japanese meal. I’ve been a frequent customer of Hello Sushi ever since it first opened on Inya Road. But this was my first visit at the new location. I decided the best way to test the new surroundings was with an old favourite: avocado maki (K1800).


Fresh apples, sorbet and citrus. This is a well balanced and mediumbodied wine that bubbles slightly on the tongue. It would be paired well with seafood and most Asian dishes.




Maki rolls at Hello Japanese. Photos: Moh Moh Thaw


Les Ormes de Lagrange, Bordeaux Superior 2008

Spiced oranges and plums. This wine transports me to beaches and souks of North Africa. Full-bodied, and deep vibrant red in colour, the wine can be savoured on its own but would be better with a dish such as a tagine.

Hello Maki and Sushi
Narnatdaw Road, Kamayut township, Yangon Ph: 01 514 010 Food: 8 Drink: n/a Atmosphere: 7 X-factor: 7 Service: 8 Value for money: 9




Total Score:


Mayonnaise, crab meat, cucumber and egg are rolled in rice and topped with an avocado slice. It arrived with the familiar smell and taste, but the pulp of avocado was not quite soft enough, so it wasn’t quite up to my high expectations. Of course, it’s not avocado season: I have the same experience when I buy them from the market for the kitchen. I decided I’d better order more dishes to really put the new location through its paces. Next up was an order of nigiri moriawase (K5800), rice rolls topped with seafood such as prawn, squid, salmon and fish egg. While avocado maki is my go-to dish, this is my husband’s favourite. We both prefer it to sashimi: The portion served up at Hello came out, as always, just as large and as fresh as you could want. We finished our appetizers just as the main dishes arrived. Ramen dishes are half-price until October 20, so I took advantage by ordering soyu ramen (K1500) mixed with bamboo

shoots, vegetables and pork. Served as a soup, the noodles smelled delicious, but the taste became a bit cloying after the bowl was half-finished. Again, however, my husband had better luck. He smiled delightedly in between bites of his tonkatsu set (K3800), breaded fried pork slices dipped in tonkatsu sauce. The rest of the table was filled with steamed rice, miso, potato salad, shredded cabbage salad with mayonnaise, and sweetand-sour kimchi. One thing we didn’t order was drinks, but after we turned down the opportunity, Hello’s staff brought us two cups of green tea, which they attentively refilled each time we emptied them. Quibbles aside, the food is top-notch and the friendly staff make for a dining experience worth repeating. I know I’ll definitely be returning – and likely before October 20. There’s a spicy ramen I’ve got my eye on for next time. – Translated by Thiri Min Htun

52 the pulse socialite
Samsung Galaxy Note III + Gear launch Kodak products launch


Mr Gaurav Bhansali and Ko Tin Aye Ko Zaw Moe Aung, Ko Tun Myint Oo, Mr Thomas, Ko Zarni Win Htet, Ma Moe Thu Zar, Ko Ko Kyaw, Hlwan Paing Mi Sandi

Mr Oscar Planas and Mr David Paterson

Peace Myanmar Electric

Bobby Soxer & Guests

Chit Thu Wai

Ipanema Brazil new branch launch
Rector of Maritime University and Satomi Yamauchi U Han Sein and U Khin Mg Myat

Lenovo handset launch

Zaw Htay, Soe Thura and partner

Daw Myint Myint Win


Daw Thin Thin Soe


UBM Asia (Thailand)

Yangon Culinary Chef Competition


U Zaw Min Win

U Lwin Moe

Mr Gandhi

Chan Tuck Wai

Ma Phyu Phyu Tin

Albert Linn

M Drive opening

Yangon Life Style furniture fair

Ma Ni Ni and Ko Min Thaw

U Myat Htoo, Thai Ambassador, U AIk Htun, Dr Sandar Htun

Ma May Myat Kyaw and Zin Zin


Wang Li Jun
B2B 1st year anniversary

the pulse socialite 53
La Source Beauty Bar launch


SOCIALITE has been a bit worried of late that all her long nights and partying are contributing toward a growing spare tyre around her waist. But after promising to hit the gym the next day, she made her way to the Yangon Culinary Chefs Competition on September 26 where she was able to appreciate the skills and commitment of young chefs in fine-tuning their art. The following day, she didn’t quite make it for that workout she’s been promising herself, instead heading to the re-launch of the recently revamped Space Bar. The following day was slightly more relaxing after a visit to the opening ceremony of the La Source Beauty Bar at the Sedona and also a Kodak products launch at Parkroyal Hotel. Socialite finished her week off at the GEMS cocktail party, promising she’d make an appearance at the gym next week.

Dr. Sai

U Tin Zan Kyaw

Ma Theingi

Hnin Htet Htet Wai

Miss Universe Myanmar 2013

Ko Htet Zan Lin

Han Thi


Emperor, backstage

Sound and lighting technicians concentrating at the pageant


Ma Toe Toe Yee

Ma Michelle, Ma Thaw Thaw

Space Bar relaunch

Sann Yee Soe, Thazin Hnin Phyu, Emma Jabrim and May Than Oo

Ko Arkar and friends

54 the pulse travel


YANGON TO NAY PYI TAW Flight FMI A1 FMI A1 FMI B1 FMI A1 FMI C1 Days 1,2,3,4,5 6 1,2,3,4,5 7 1,2,3,4,5 Dep 7:30 8:00 11:30 15:30 16:30 Arr 8:30 9:00 12:30 16:30 17:30 MANDALAY TO YANGON Flight Y5 233 YH 910 YJ 892 YH 918 YJ 143/W97143 6T 402 K7 223 W9 201 Arr 9:50 11:00 14:00 18:00 19:00 W9 144 W9 201 YJ 002 Y5 132 K7 227 K7 627 YJ 202 YANGON TO MANDALAY Flight W9 512 YH 917 YJ 891 Y5 234 6T 401 K7 222 YH 909 K7 626 K7 226 YJ 201 YJ 143/W97143 W9 251 6T 401 YJ 761 YJ 001 W9 201 8M 6603 YJ 751/W9 7751 YJ 761 W9 251 K7 624 YJ 751/W9 7751 YJ 201 YJ 761 YJ 751/W9 7751 YH 727 YH 729 YH 737 YH 729 W9 129 K7 224 6T 501 YH 731 6T 501 Days 3 Daily 1,2,3,4,5,6 Daily Daily Daily 1,2,3,4,5,6 1,5 2,4 1,2,4 1,2,3 Daily 1 6 3 1,2,3 2,4,7 3,7 1 2 Daily 7 3 1,2,4 5 1 2,4 3,7 6 1,2,3 Daily 2,3,4,5,6,7 2,4,6 1 Dep 6:00 6:00 6:10 6:15 6:20 6:30 6:15 6:45 6:45 7:00 7:00 7:00 7:00 7:00 7:30 7:45 9:00 10:00 10:30 10:30 10:30 10:30 11:00 11:00 11:00 11:00 11:00 11:00 11:00 14:45 14:30 13:45 15:00 15:30 Arr 8:05 8:20 8:15 7:30 8:25 8:40 7:55 8:10 8:10 8:25 9:05 9:05 9:40 8:55 8:25 9:10 10:10 11:55 12:25 11:55 11:55 12:25 12:25 12:55 12:55 12:25 13:10 13:10 14:10 16:40 16:35 15:45 17:10 17:30 YANGON TO NYAUNG U Flight YH 917 YJ 891 6T 401 K7 222 YH 909 YH 909 6T 501 W9 129 W9 129 K7 224 YH 731 6T 501 Days Daily Daily Daily Daily 7 1,2,3,4,5,6 2,3,4,5,6,7 4,5,6,7 1,2,3 Daily 2,4,6 1 Dep 6:00 6:10 6:20 6:30 6:30 6:15 13:45 14:30 14:45 14:30 15:00 15:30 Arr 7:35 7:30 7:40 7:50 8:05 8:40 16:35 17:10 17:25 17:25 17:55 18:20 YJ 762 K7 845 YJ 202 W9 120 YH 738 YH 728 YH 730 YJ 762 YH 732 W9 129 YJ 752/W9 7752 6T 502 K7 225 W9 129 K7 625 YH 738 8M 6604 YH 738 YH 729 W9 511 W9 252 YH 730 YJ 752/W9 7752 6T 502 Days Daily Daily 1,2,3,4,5,6 Daily 1,2,3 Daily Daily 4,5,6,7 Daily 1,2,3 3 3,5,6,7 2,4 1,5 1,2,4 6 2,4,7 3 1,3 5 1 2 1,2,4 6 4,5,6,7 7 2,3,4,5,6,7 Daily 1,2,3 Daily 3 2,4,7 7 6 2 2 4 5 1 Dep 8:10 7:55 8:30 8:20 9:20 8:45 8:55 9:10 9:20 9:25 9:25 9:30 10:35 10:55 11:30 12:35 12:50 15:30 15:45 16:10 16:30 16:30 16:35 17:10 16:40 16:50 16:05 16:50 16:55 17:10 17:10 17:20 17:10 17:20 17:30 17:35 17:00 17:50 17:50 Arr 9:25 10:00 10:25 10:15 10:45 10:45 11:00 11:05 10:45 11:20 10:20 10:30 12:00 12:20 12:25 14:00 16:00 17:35 17:10 17:35 18:35 17:55 18:00 19:15 18:45 18:15 18:10 19:00 19:00 18:35 18:35 18:30 19:15 18:45 19:35 19:00 18:25 19:15 19:55 Flight YH 917 YJ 891 6T 401 K7 222 YJ 761 W9 201 K7 828 W9 201 YJ 751/W9 7751 W9 119 YJ 761 YJ 751/W9 7751 YH 737 YH 727 YANGON TO HEHO Days Daily 1,2,3,4,5,6 Daily Daily 6 4,5,6,7 1,3,5 1,2,3 3,7 1,3, 1,2,4 5 3,5,7 1 Dep 6:00 6:10 6:20 6:30 7:00 7:30 7:30 7:45 10:00 10:30 11:00 11:00 11:00 11:00 Arr 9:05 9:00 9:20 9:30 8:10 9:40 8:45 9:55 11:10 11:40 12:10 12:10 12:25 12:25 Flight K7 319 YH 633 YH 633 YANGON TO MYEIK Days Daily 1,3,5 7 Dep 7:00 10:30 10:00 Arr 9:05 12:45 12:25 Flight 6T 606 K7 427 6T 608 SIT T WE TO YANGON Days 2,4,5,7 Daily 1,3,6 Dep 13:35 14:05 13:00 Arr 15:00 15:25 15:00 Flight 6T 605 K7 426 6T 607 MYITKYINA TO YANGON Flight YJ 202 YJ 211 YJ 202 K7 625 W9 252 Days 3 5,7 1,2,4 Daily 2 Dep 14:05 10:05 10:05 15:40 16:05 Arr 17:35 13:25 12:55 18:35 19:00 YANGON TO SIT T WE Days 2,4,5,7 Daily 1,3,6 Dep 11:15 12:30 11:15 Arr 13:15 13:50 12:40 NYAUNG U TO YANGON Flight YH 910 YH 910 YH 917 YJ 891 K7 222 6T 401 6T 502 YH 728 W9 129 W9 129 K7 225 YH 732 YH 738 6T 502 Days 7 1,2,3,4,5,6 Daily Daily Daily Daily 2,3,4,5,6,7 1 Daily 1,2,3 Daily 2,4,6 7 1 Dep 8:05 8:40 7:35 7:45 8:05 7:55 16:50 17:15 17:25 17:40 17:45 17:55 17:55 18:35 Arr 9:25 10:00 10:15 10:25 11:00 10:45 18:10 18:35 18:45 19:00 19:00 19:15 19:15 19:55 Flight YH 918 YJ 892 6T 402 K7 223 W9 201 W9 201 YH 738 YANGON TO MYITKYINA Flight YJ 211 YJ 211 YJ 201 YJ 201 K7 844 W9 251 K7 624 YJ 201 Days 7 5 4 1,2 2,4,7 2 Daily 3 Dep 7:00 7:00 7:00 7:00 7:30 10:30 10:30 11:00 Arr 9:50 9:50 9:50 9:50 11:05 13:25 13:25 13:50 K7 829 W9 120 YJ 762 YJ 762 YH 738 W9 129 YH 728 YH 730 6T 501 K7 224 W9 129 YH 731 YH 738 YH 730 YJ 752/W9 7752 6T 501 K7 827 HEHO TO YANGON Days Daily 1,2,3,4,5,6 Daily Daily 4,5,6,7 1,2,3 3 1,3,5 1,3 1,2,4 6 5 4,5,6,7 1 2 2,3,4,5,6,7 Daily 1,2,3 2,4,6 7 6 3 1 2,6 Dep 9:05 9:15 9:35 9:45 9:55 10:10 16:25 13:50 15:00 15:50 11:50 15:25 15:55 15:45 15:45 15:10 16:00 16:10 16:25 16:25 16:35 16:55 16:55 17:25 Arr 10:15 10:25 10:45 11:00 11:05 11:20 18:35 15:05 17:10 18:00 14:00 17:35 18:45 18:35 17:55 18:10 19:00 19:00 19:15 19:15 18:45 18:05 19:55 18:40 THANDWE TO YANGON Flight 6T 605 6T 608 Days 2,4,5,7 1,3,6 Dep 12:25 14:05 Arr 15:00 15:00 YANGON TO THANDWE Flight 6T 605 6T 607 6T 607 Days 2,4,5,7 1,4 6 Dep 11:15 11:15 11:15 Arr 12:10 13:50 12:40 K7 826 6T 501 W9 129 W9 129 K7 224 YH 731 6T 501 2,6 2,3,4,5,6,7 1,2,3 4,5,6,7 Daily 2,4,6 1 11:45 13:45 14:45 14:30 14:30 15:00 15:30 13:00 14:55 15:55 15:40 15:45 16:25 16:40 Flight YH 634 YH 634 YH 634 YH 634 K7 320 MYEIK TO YANGON Days 5 7 1,3 3 Daily Dep 14:55 14:35 15:55 15:25 11:30 Arr 16:55 16:35 17:55 17:25 13:35

NAY PYI TAW TO YANGON Flight FMI A2 FMI A2 FMI B2 FMI A2 FMI C2 Days 1,2,3,4,5 6 1,2,3,4,5 7 1,2,3,4,5 Dep 8:50 10:00 13:00 17:00 18:00

Domestic Airlines
Air Bagan Ltd. (W9) Air KBZ (K7)
Tel : 513322, 513422, 504888, Fax : 515102 Tel: 372977~80, 533030~39 (Airport), Fax: 372983

Air Mandalay (6T)

Tel : (Head Office) 501520, 525488, Fax: 525937. Airport: 533222~3, 09-73152853. Fax: 533223.

Asian Wings (YJ)

Tel: 951 516654, 532253, 09-731-35991~3. Fax: 951 532333

Golden Myanmar Airlines (Y5)
Tel: 95 9 400446999, 95 9 400447999, Fax: 01 860 4051

Yangon Airways(YH)

Tel: (+95-1) 383 100, 383 107, 700 264, Fax: 652 533.

FMI Air Charter - Sales & Reservations

Tel: (95-1) 240363, 240373 / (+95-9) 421146545

6T = Air Mandalay W9 = Air Bagan YJ = Asian Wings K7 = AIR KBZ YH = Yangon Airways FMI = FMI AIR Charter Y5 = Golden Myanmar Airlines

Subject to change without notice

the pulse travel 55

Flights PG 706 8M 335 TG 304 PG 702 TG 302 8M 331 PG 704 Y5 237 TG 306 YANGON TO BANGKOK Days Dep Daily 7:15 Daily 8:20 Daily 9:50 Daily 10:30 Daily 14:55 Daily 16:30 Daily 18:20 Daily 18:05 Daily 19:45 Arr 9:30 10:05 11:45 12:25 16:50 18:15 20:15 19:50 21:40 Arr 10:20 14:05 19:35 Arr 5:00 12:25 14:40 14:45 16:05 16:05 21:15 23:35 20:05 Arr 11:50 12:50 16:30 20:00 Arr 21:55 Arr 13:15 15:50 22:15 Arr 16:15 Arr 18:35 18:00 17:35 Arr 16:10 Arr 21:30 MANDALAY TO KUNMING Flights Days Dep MU 2030 Daily 14:40 Flights 8M 336 TG 303 PG 701 TG 301 PG 703 TG 305 8M 332 PG 705 Y5 238 BANGKOK TO YANGON Days Dep Daily 11:30 Daily 7:55 Daily 8:50 Daily 13:00 Daily 16:45 Daily 17:50 Daily 19:15 Daily 20:15 Daily 21:10 Arr 17:20 Arr 0:15 8:50 9:40 13:45 17:35 18:45 20:00 21:30 21:55 Arr 8:00 17:20 11:45 Arr 9:20 10:45 10:40 14:50 15:45 17:05 23:35 18:25 14:45 Arr 13:15 Arr 8:00 11:15 13:50 14:40 Arr 10:30 16:35 15:50 Arr 9:55 Arr 11:30 13:15 13:55 Arr 18:10 Arr 18:10 DON MUEANG TO MANDALAY Flights Days Dep Arr FD 2760 Daily 10:50 12:15 KUNMING TO MANDALAY Flights Days Dep MU 2029 Daily 13:55 Arr 13:50

International Airlines
Air Asia (FD)
Tel: 251 885, 251 886.

YANGON TO DON MUENG Flights Days Dep FD 2752 Daily 8:30 FD 2756 Daily 12:15 FD 2754 Daily 17:50 YANGON TO SINGAPORE Flights Days Dep MI 509 1,6 0:25 8M 231 Daily 8:00 Y5 233 Daily 10:10 SQ 997 Daily 10:25 8M 6232 Daily 11:30 3K 586 Daily 11:30 MI 517 Daily 16:40 TR 2827 2,3,4,5,7 19:05 TR 2827 1,6 15:35 YANGON TO KUALA LUMPUR Flights Days Dep 8M 501 1,3,6 7:50 AK 1427 Daily 8:30 MH 741 Daily 12:15 MH 743 Daily 15:45 Flights CA 906 YANGON TO BEIJING Days Dep 2,3,4,6,7 14:15

Cliff vines and sea cellars: Wine region hangs on


DON MUENG TO YANGON Flights Days Dep FD 2751 Daily 7:15 FD 2753 Daily 16:35 FD 2755 Daily 11:10 SINGAPORE TO YANGON Flights Days Dep SQ 998 Daily 7:55 3K 585 Daily 9:20 8M 6231 Daily 9:10 8M 232 Daily 13:25 MI 518 Daily 14:20 Y5 234 Daily 15:35 MI 520 5,7 22:10 TR 2826 2,3,4,5,7 17:00 TR 2826 1,6 13:15 Flights CA 905 BEIJING TO YANGON Days Dep 2,3,4,6,7 8:05

Air Bagan Ltd.(W9) Air China (CA) Air India

Tel : 513322, 513422, 504888, Fax : 515102 Tel : 666112, 655882. Tel : 253597~98, 254758. Fax: 248175



Bangkok Airways (PG) Condor (DE)

Tel: 255122, 255 265, Fax: 255119 Tel: + 95 1 -370836 up to 39 (ext : 810)

Dragonair (KA)

Tel: 95-1-255320, 255321, Fax : 255329

Golden Myanmar Airlines (Y5)
Tel: 95 9 400446999, 95 9 400447999, Fax: 01 860 4051

YANGON TO GAUNGZHOU Flights Days Dep 8M 711 2,4,7 8:40 CZ 3056 3,6 11:20 CZ 3056 1,5 17:40 Flights CI 7916 Flights MU 2012 MU 2032 CA 906 YANGON TO TAIPEI Days Dep 1,2,3,4,5,6 10:50 YANGON TO KUNMING Days Dep 1,3 12:20 2,4,5,6,7 14:40 2,3,4,6,7 14:15

KAULA LUMPUR TO YANGON Flights Days Dep AK 1426 Daily 6:55 MH 740 Daily 10:05 8M 502 1,3,6 12:50 MH742 Daily 13:30 GUANGZHOU TO YANGON Flights Days Dep CZ 3055 3,6 8:40 CZ 3055 1,5 14:45 8M 712 2,4,7 14:15 Flights CI 7915 Flights MU 2011 CA 905 MU 2031 TAIPEI TO YANGON Days Dep 1,2,3,4,5,6 7:00 KUNMING TO YANGON Days Dep 1,3 8:20 2,3,4,6,7 12:40 2,4,5,6,7 13:30

Malaysia Airlines (MH)

Tel : 387648, 241007 ext : 120, 121, 122 Fax : 241124

Myanmar Airways International(8M)
Tel : 255260, Fax: 255305

Silk Air(MI)

Tel: 255 287~9, Fax: 255 290

Thai Airways (TG)

Tel : 255491~6, Fax : 255223

Vietnam Airlines (VN)

Fax : 255086. Tel 255066/ 255088/ 255068.

Qatar Airways (Temporary Office)
Tel: 01-250388, (ext: 8142, 8210)

YANGON TO CHIANG MAI Flights Days Dep W9 9607 7 14:20 Flights VN 956 YANGON TO HANOI Days Dep 1,3,5,6,7 19:10

FD & AK = Air Asia TG = Thai Airways 8M = Myanmar Airways International Y5 = Golden Myanmar Airlines PG = Bangkok Airways MI = Silk Air VN = Vietnam Airline MH = Malaysia Airlines CZ = China Southern CI = China Airlines CA = Air China KA = Dragonair Y5 = Golden Myanmar Airlines IC = Indian Airlines Limited W9 = Air Bagan 3K = Jet Star AI = Air India QR = Qatar Airways KE = Korea Airlines NH = All Nippon Airways SQ = Singapore Airways DE = Condor Airlines MU=China Eastern Airlines BR = Eva Airlines DE = Condor AI = Air India

CHIANG MAI TO YANGON Flights Days Dep W9 9608 7 17:20 Flights VN 957 HANOI TO YANGON Days Dep 1,3,5,6,7 16:35

YANGON TO HO CHI MINH CITY Flights Days Dep Arr VN 942 2,4,7 14:25 17:10 Flights QR 619 YANGON TO DOHA Days Dep 1,4,5 8:15 Arr 11:15

HO CHI MINH CITY TO YANGON Flights Days Dep Arr VN 943 2,4,7 11:40 13:25 BANGKOK TO MANDALAY Flights Days Dep TG 781 2,3,5,6,7 7:25 PG 709 1,3,5,7 12:00 Flights QR 618 Arr 8:50 13:20

YANGON TO PHNOM PENH Flights Days Dep Arr 8M 403 3,6 16:50 19:15 Flights 0Z 770 KE 472 YANGON TO SEOUL Days Dep Arr 4,7 0:35 9:10 Daily 23:35 08:05+1 Arr 06:00

ROM the vineyards clinging to seaside cliffs to a unique cellar of sparkling wine stored on the seabed, the off -the-beaten-track wine region of Liguria in northern Italy offers an array of spectacular sights. But as he plucked grapes from his terraced vineyard at the end of harvest, Cesare Scorza said the traditions are in danger because of the higher cost of farming on 60-degree slopes and keeping stone walls intact. Grape pickers made their way through the vineyard as if suspended between sky and sea, walking up and down wooden ladders and across along the walls. The crates of juicy grapes are carried up the slopes on a special lift driven like a tractor along a monorail track – one of dozens in this region. “This type of farming is expensive,” said Scorza, who has two hectares (five acres) in Manarola, a colourful cliff-top village in the Cinque Terre National Park. “The labourers cost more than in the valley and you are always having to repair the walls. There aren’t many young people with a passion for this!” Despite the difficulties of cultivation, Liguria was for centuries a flourishing wine region that supplied wealthy merchants in the nearby port of Genoa. Mass transport eventually made wine from other regions like Piedmont or Tuscany much more competitive, but fans say the sea breeze gives the Ligurian wines a distinctive taste that cannot be found elsewhere. Ligurian producers have also managed to find an up-market niche for the most prized products of the steepslope vineyards like Sciacchetra, a dessert wine that can sell for upward of 70 euros (US$90) a bottle. One particularly imaginative local grower has even invented what he calls the “Wine of the Abyss”. Pierluigi Lugano, a former art

history teacher, stores thousands of bottles of his wine at the bottom of the sea near the glamorous seaside town of Portofino – and the unusual idea is proving wildly popular. Lugano said the inspiration came from his interest in marine archaeology and the recovery of Roman amphoras from shipwrecks that still contained remains of wine or olive oil that had been preserved by the sea water. “The darkness and constant temperature of 15 degrees are valuable and there are also conditions that you do not have in a normal cellar like the external pressure on the bottles which helps the perlage,” Lugano said, referring to the bubbles created in the wine. The twisting of the bottles to produce sparkling wine – a process known as remuage – occurs naturally due to sea currents and the absence of oxygen ensures a hermetic seal to help the wine mature, he said. Bottles are stored in large cages on the seabed at a depth of 60 metres (197 feet) and Lugano even uses an actual shipwreck – a 100-year-old yacht that once belonged to the Rothschild banking family. When they are brought out, the bottles are covered in molluscs and other sea life – a distinctive characteristic that has helped attract extra customers. “They look like something out of science fiction,” he said. Lugano started out in 2010 with 6500 bottles under the sea, and now stores 15,000 bottles – more than 10 percent of his annual production. He now plans to expand further after this harvest. It is a labour of love for Lugano, who said he hoped this type of initiative could help save seaside vineyards like his that are “at risk of extinction”. “The vineyard terraces have been gradually abandoned. Older generations have not been replaced by younger ones. But I believe in recovery.” – AFP

DOHA TO YANGON Days Dep Arr 3,4,7 21:05 07:00+1

YANGON TO HONG KONG Flights Days Dep KA 251 1,2,4,6 01:10 Flights NH 914 Flights AI 228

PHNOM PENH TO YANGON Flights Days Dep Arr 8M 404 3,6 20:15 21:40 Flights KE 471 0Z 769 Flights NH 913 Flights KA 250 Flights AI 227 SEOUL TO YANGON Days Dep Daily 18:40 3,6 19:50 TOKYO TO YANGON Days Dep Daily 10:30 HONG KONG TO YANGON Days Dep 1,3,5,7 21:45 KOLKATA TO YANGON Days Dep 1,5 10:35 Arr 22:30 23:25 Arr 15:30 Arr 23:30 Arr 13:20

YANGON TO TOKYO Days Dep Arr Daily 21:45 06:50+1 YANGON TO KOLKATA Days Dep 1,5 14:05 Arr 15:05 Arr 11:55 16:35

MANDALAY TO BANGKOK Flights Days Dep TG 782 2,3,5,6,7 9:30 PG 710 1,3,5,7 14:10

Subject to change without notice
Day 1 = Monday 2 = Tuesday 3 = Wednesday 4 = Thursday 5 = Friday 6 = Saturday 7 = Sunday

MANDALAY TO DON MUENG Flights Days Dep Arr FD 2761 Daily 12:45 15:00

Seep cliffs like these in Portofino’s harbour are home to a unique wine culture. Photo: Stan Shebs, WikiMedia

56 the pulse international


‘Breaking Bad’ finale draws record ratings

OCTOBER 7 - 13, 2013
AQUARIUS | Jan 20 - Feb 18

LEO | Jul 23 - Aug 22 You can be certain that a quiet mind is the foundation of inner peace and inner peace translates into outer peace. Train your mind to be still and quiet before your decisions are made. Stillness can be incorporated into your daily life, making you less reactive, irritable and giving you a greater perspective to see all things as “small stuff” rather than as a series of emergencies. Nothing would get done at all if you cannot find fault with yourself. VIRGO | Aug 23 - Sep 22 Your intellectual investment must be free from emotional needs and wants. Don’t make staying within a comfortable and secure environment easier for yourself. Expending your circle of acquaintances may be uncomfortable but it will reveal a new idea, prompt you to see things from different point of view and this will help generate ideas of your own. Love is not easy this week with regard to social communication. LIBRA | Sep 23 - Oct 22 You must have your own set of ideas to evaluate life and the real challenge is to see your struggle as a test. Take a look around today at all the enlightened people and their manner and social language to compare with you own to get ideas about your social change. Seek first to understand that it isn’t about who’s right or wrong but observing a philosophy of effective communication, in social and personal situations. SCORPIO | Oct 23 - Nov 21 Righteousness is not merely about avoiding temptation and it is not an absolute either. If you really want to do the right thing, the meaning of righteousness can go beyond your knowledge. Do not be afraid of seeming overly dramatic or of being overly emotional and don’t let any negative fear hold you back. Secret love is dangerous. SAGITTARIUS | Nov 22 - Dec 21 In the presence of hope, faith is born. In the presence of faith, love becomes a possibility! In the presence of love, miracles happen! Don’t trust your doubt. Doubt is a subconscious defence mechanism fabricated by an insecure troubled mind, which will keep you away from reality and truth. We all agree that forgiveness is a beautiful idea until we have to practice it. CAPRICORN | Dec 22 - Jan 19 Surprise yourself with a meal of generosity. You should be lost sometimes in a cause that of research and study about yourself. Keep a “be happy” attitude which will endure so you can live and build a reputation as a beautiful child of God. Unless you can maintain an honourable reputation you will not have the kind of popularity that leaves you with a wholesome and healthy sense of self-esteem.


HE final episode of Breaking Bad drew the cult US television show’s biggest-ever ratings with 10.3 million viewers tuning in, figures released September 30 showed. But there were also more than 500,000 illegal downloads of the Sunday night finale of the series, with Australia topping the illicit rankings with nearly 1 in 5 of copies viewed. The show, about chemistry teacher turned drug lord Walter White, ended its fifth and final season a week after winning the best drama award at the Emmys, television’s version of the Oscars. The long-awaited final episode drew 3.7 million more viewers than the penultimate one a week before, which itself had set the series record at 6.6 million, according to ratings tracker Nielsen cited by industry journal Variety. The record ratings were less than the biggest season finale of The Walking Dead on 12.4 million, but more than twice the biggest audience for advertising drama Mad Men which drew 3.5 million for the first show in its fifth series, according to Variety. The figures pale in comparison with classic TV shows of the past, before the TV and media world became so fragmented in the digital era.

You must have a big heart and a broad mind to understand everything about what your future will bring during a good transition. Sharing of thoughts, feelings and knowledge is indispensable and necessary in your relationship, but nothing is ever good enough to be acceptable. Write off perfecting those around you as a bad idea. The less you try to control, the more you’ll notice how wonderful your life really is. PISCES | Feb 19 - March 20 Seeing the innocence in life is a powerful tool for your social transformation, and yourself. When not frustrated by the actions of others, it’s a lot easier to stay focused on the beauty of life. You’ll be lucky with an official promotion regarding a golden post you wish to experience. Educational learning opportunities that improve your knowledge is not in balance with your emotional suffering. You must keep your emotions in check. ARIES | Mar 21 - Apr 19 People with high self-esteem are more willing to take emotional risks. You are no more likely to be fooled than insecure people and others who are judged to be less intelligent. Have confidence in your ability to be better than others at reading people. Give others the same consideration you give yourself. Build people up through encouragement and give people credit by acknowledgment. TAURUS | Apr 20 - May 20 The beauty of doing nothing will teach you to clear your mind and relax and you will be able to make the right decisions for hidden social problems. Start trusting your intuitive heart today and you’ll see a world of difference in your life. Reminding yourself of what’s really important to say and do will help you keep your priorities straight. Pay close attention and care to an important test of love. GEMINI | May 21 - June 20 Keeping and minding your own business goes far beyond simply, avoiding the temptation to try to solve other people’s problems, which can disturb your mind and cause stress. Your thinking will always come back to you as being aware of inner conflicts and you should learn to maintain point-to-point relationships. Know that money does can corrupt people. CANCER | Jun 21 - Jul 22 Understand the link between your expectations and your frustration levels and don’t expect your day to be free of problems. See your problems as a potential opportunity for an awakening – a chance to practice being patient and to learn. Love has such a transformational power and unconditional love can bring forth peaceful feelings in both the giver and the receiver. Lighten up your entire life without frustrations.

Aaron Paul (left) and Bryan Cranston star in cult television show, Breaking Bad. Photo: AFP

M. A.S.H., for example, scored nearly 106 million viewers for its finale in 1983, while Cheers drew 80.4 million a decade later and the last episode of Seinfeld was watched by 76.3 million people in 1998. In the current media landscape talent shows regularly get much bigger audiences than that of Breaking Bad: The Voice got 14.7 million for its latest series debut. While AMC, the cable channel which broadcasts Breaking Bad, will be happy with the ratings, they

will be less pleased at the number of people who watched the final episode through illicit means. The show was illegally downloaded more than half a million times within 12 hours of the first illegal copy appearing online, according to online piracy news website TorrentFreak. Australia had the biggest number of illegal downloads with 18 percent of the total, followed by the United States with 14.5pc, Britain with 9.3pc, India with 5.7pc and Canada 5.1pc, it reported. – AFP

Unearthing gems of Asian film
A BHUTANESE film directed by a monk opened Asia’s largest cinema festival in South Korea on October 3, a selection organisers said celebrated the diversity of talent in a region where box office takings are overshadowing Hollywood. Vara: A Blessing, directed by Khyentse Norbu – who will miss the festival because he is taking part in a silent mountain retreat – is the first of 301 movies to be screened at the 18th Busan International Film Festival (BIFF). “When we received word that Vara had been selected as the opening film, both Khyentse Norbu and I were incredulous,” producer Nanette Nelms said. The story of a woman’s fight against daily adversity will be among 95 world premieres in a program that includes works from Central Asia as well as a World Cinema section drawing together 50 productions. With films from 70 countries screening over 10 days, an impressive lineup of both Asian and international filmmakers will be in attendance, led by Academy Award-nominated actor Ken Watanabe who stars in the Japanese remake of Unforgiven, Clint Eastwood’s 1992 Academy Award winner. The presence of a number of internationally funded, Asianproduced films in Busan highlights the erosion of cinema’s traditional geographical boundaries as filmmakers look beyond single markets. Box office takings in Asia are currently growing faster than those of North America. The US-based Motion Picture Association recently reported that box office receipts from the Asia-Pacific region grew by 15 percent to US$10.4 billion in 2012, compared to 6pc growth in North America to $10.8 billion over the same period. Five of the world’s top 10 box office markets are now in the AsiaPacific region, led by China where cinema takings for the first half of this year hit $1.8 billion, up 36pc year-on-year. Industry insiders predict that market alone will surpass North America by 2020. The festival also comes on the back of a record-breaking first six months of the year for the South Korean film industry. Bong Joon-Ho’s critically acclaimed smash Snowpiercer, a rare English-language film to come out of Korea. Starring Captain America star Chris Evans and British actress Tilda Swinton, it has taken an estimated $60 million from the domestic box office. The science fiction adventure, which depicts a future where life on the planet has been threatened by a failed global warming experiment, will screen as part of the Gala Presentation program. The festival’s emphasis on fresh talent can be seen in its main New Currents award, a competition open to first- and second-time Asian filmmakers. Two winners from a shortlist of 12 will receive $30,000 each. “The ‘discovery of up-andcoming directors’ is a particular emphasis in this year’s program,” said Lee. “It’s perhaps the strongest effort yet by BIFF in its search for the identity of Asian cinema, and for what the future holds for this fastdeveloping industry.” Veteran director Im Kwon-Taek is meanwhile the focus of a 70-film retrospective. The Busan festival draws to a close on October 12 with the announcement of the New Currents award winners and with the world premiere of Kim Dong-Hyun’s family drama The Dinner. Six-time Academy Award-nominated Irish director Jim Sheridan (In the Name of the Father) will host a Master Class while Cambodian director Rithy Panh will collect Busan’s prestigious Asian Filmmaker of the Year award, following his success in the Uncertain Regard section of this year’s Cannes festival for the epic The Missing Picture. – AFP

‘They can’t complain when there is no proof ... and they need to be brave to speak out’
“The industry continues to grow very quickly, while we’ve been surprised by its reach worldwide,” said Busan festival director Lee Yong-Kwan. A record 98.5 million admissions were collected over the first half of 2013, a year-on-year rise of 18.3pc driven by local productions. Included among the box office hits to be screened in Busan is

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The Essentials
EMBASSIES Australia 88, Strand Road, Yangon. Tel : 251810, 251797, 251798, 251809, 246462, 246463, fax: 246159 Bangladesh 11-B, Than Lwin Road, Yangon. Tel: 515275, 526144, fax: 515273, email: bdootygn@ Brazil 56, Pyay Road, 6th mile, Hlaing Tsp, Yangon. Tel: 507225, 507251, 507482. fax: 507483. email: Administ.yangon@ Brunei 17, Kanbawza Avenue, Golden Velly (1), Bahan Tsp, Yangon. Tel: 566985, 503978, fax: 512854 email: bruneiemb@ Cambodia 25 (3B/4B), New University Avenue Road, Bahan Tsp, Yangon. Tel: 549609, 540964, fax: 541462, email: RECYANGON @ China 1, Pyidaungsu Yeiktha Road, Yangon. Tel: 221280, 221281, fax: 227019, 228319 Danmark, No.7, Pyi Thu St, Pyay Rd, 7 Miles, Mayangone Tsp, Yangon. Tel: 01 – 9669520 - 17, Fax – 01- 9669516 Egypt 81, Pyidaungsu Yeiktha Road, Yangon. Tel: 222886, 222887, email: egye mbyangon@ mptmail. France 102, Pyidaungsu Yeiktha Road, Yangon. Tel: 212178, 212520, email: ambaf rance. rangoun@ Germany 9, Bogyoke Aung San Museum Road, Bahan Tsp, Yangon. Tel: 548951, 548952, email: info@rangun. India 545-547, Merchant St, Yangon. Tel: 391219, 388412, email: indiaembassy @ Indonesia 100, Pyidaungsu Yeiktha Rd, Yangon. Tel: 254465, 254469, 229750, fax: 254468, email: kukygn @ Israel 15, Khabaung Street, Hlaing Tsp, Yangon. Tel: 515115, fax: 515116, email: info@ Italy 3, Inya Myaing Road, Golden Valley, Yangon. Tel: 527100, 527101, fax: 514565, email: ambyang. mail@ Japan 100, Natmauk Rd, Yangon. Tel: 549644-8, 540399, 540400, 540411, 545988, fax: 549643 Embassy of the State of Kuwait Chatrium Hotel, Rm: 416, 418, 420, 422, 40 Natmauk Rd, Tarmwe Tsp, Tel: 544500. North Korea 77C, Shin Saw Pu Rd, Sanchaung Tsp, Yangon. Tel: 512642, 510205 South Korea 97 University Avenue, Bahan Tsp, Yangon. Tel: 5271424, 515190, fax: 513286, email: myanmar@mofat. Lao A-1, Diplomatic Quarters, Tawwin Road, Dagon Tsp, Yangon. Tel: 222482, fax: 227446, email: Laoembcab@ mptmail. Malaysia 82, Pyidaungsu Yeiktha Road, Yangon. Tel: 220248, 220249, email: mwkyangon@ Nepal 16, Natmauk Yeiktha, Yangon. Tel: 545880, 557168, fax: 549803, email: nepemb Norway, No.7, Pyi Thu St, Pyay Rd, 7 Miles, Mayangone Tsp,Yangon. Tel: 01 – 9669520 - 17 Fax – 01- 9669516 Pakistan A-4, diplomatic Quarters, Pyay Rd, Yangon. Tel: 222881 (Chancery Exchange) fax: 221147, email: pakistan@ Philippines 50, Sayasan Road, Bahan Tsp, Yangon. Tel: 558149-151, fax: 558154, email: p.e. Russian 38, Sagawa Road, Yangon. Tel: 241955, 254161, fax: 241953, email: rusinmyan@mptmail Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia No.287/289, U Wisara Rd, Sanchaung Tsp. Tel : 01-536153, 516952, fax : 01-516951 Serbia No. 114-A, Inya Rd, P.O.Box No. 943, Yangon. Tel: 515282, 515283, email: serbemb @ Singapore 238, Dhamazedi Road, Bahan Tsp, Yangon. Tel: 559001, email: singemb_ ygn@_ sgmfa. Sri Lanka 34 Taw Win Road, Yangon. Tel: 222812, fax: 221509, email: slembassy. The Embassy of Switzerland No 11, Kabaung Lane, 5 ½ mile, Pyay Rd, Hlaing Tsp, Yangon. Tel: 534754, 512873, 507089. Fax: 534754, Ext: 110 Thailand 94 Pyay Rd, Dagon Tsp, Yangon. Tel: 226721, 226728, 226824 Turkish Embassy 19AB, Kan Yeik Thar St, Mayangone Tsp,Yangon. Tel : 662992, Fax : 661365 United Kingdom 80 Strand Rd, Yangon. Tel: 370867, 380322, 371852, 371853, 256438, fax: 370866 United States of America 110, University Avenue, Kamayut Tsp, Yangon. Tel: 536509, 535756, Fax: 650306 Vietnam Bldg-72, Thanlwin Rd, Bahan Tsp, Yangon. Tel: 511305 email: vnemb myr@ UNITED NATIONS ILO Liaison 1-A, Kanbae (Thitsar Rd), Yankin Tsp, Yangon, Myanmar. Tel : 01-566538, 566539 Fax : 01-566582 IOM 12th Flr, Traders Hotel, 223, Tel: 252560 ext. 5002 UNAIDS 137/1, Thaw Wun Rd, Kamayut Tsp. Tel : 534498, 504832 UNDCP 11-A, Malikha St, Mayangone tsp. tel: 666903, 664539. fax: 651334. UNDP 6, Natmauk Rd, Bahan tel: 542910-19. fax: 292739. UNFPA 6, Natmauk Rd, Bahan tsp. tel: 546029. UNHCR 287, Pyay Rd, Sanchaung tsp. tel: 524022, 524024. fax 524031. UNIAP Rm: 1202, 12 Fl, Traders 254852, 254853. UNIC 6, Natmauk St., Bahan, tel: 52910~19 UNICEF 14~15 Flr, Traders Hotel. P.O. Box 1435, Kyauktada. tel: 375527~32, fax: 375552 email: unicef. yangon@unicef. org, UNODC 11-A, Malikha Rd., Ward 7, Mayangone. tel: 01-9666903, 9660556, 9660538, 9660398, 9664539, fax: 651334. email: UNOPS Inya Lake Hotel, 3rd floor, 37, Kaba Aye Pagoda Rd, Mayangone Tsp. tel: 951657281~7. Fax: 657279. UNRC 6, Natmauk Rd, P.O. Box 650, TMWE tel: 542911~19, 292637 (Resident Coordinator), fax: 292739, 544531. WFP 3rd-flr, Inya Lake Hotel, 37, Kabar Aye Pagoda Rd. tel: 657011~6 (6-lines) Ext: 2000. WHO 12A Fl, Traders Hotel. tel:250583. ASEAN Coordinating Of. for the ASEAN Humanitarian Task Force, 79, Taw Win st, Dagon Tsp. Ph: 225258. FAO Myanma Agriculture Service Insein Rd, Insein. tel: 641672, 641673. fax: 641561.

General Listing
Hotel Yangon 91/93, 8th Mile Junction, Tel : 01-667708, 667688. Inya Lake Resort Hotel 37 Kabar Aye Pagoda Rd. tel: 662866. fax: 665537. Golden Hill Towers 24-26, Kabar Aye Pagoda Rd, Bahan Tsp. tel: 558556. ghtower@ Marina Residence 8, Kabar Aye Pagoda Rd, Mayangone Tsp. tel: 6506 51~4. fax: 650630. MiCasa Hotel Apartments 17, Kabar Aye Pagoda Rd, Yankin Tsp. tel: 650933. fax: 650960. Sakura Residence 9, Inya Rd, Kamaryut Tsp. tel: 525001. fax: 525002. The Grand Mee Ya Hta Executive Residence 372, Bogyoke Aung San Rd, Pabedan Tsp. tel 951-256355 (25 lines).

YANGON No. 277, Bogyoke Aung San Road, Corner of 38th Street, Kyauktada Township, Yangon, Myanmar. Tel : (951) 391070, 391071. Reservation@391070 (Ext) 1910, 106. Fax : (951) 391375. Email : Avenue 64 Hotel No. 64 (G), Kyitewine Pagoda Rd, Mayangone Tsp, Yangon. Tel : 09-8631392, 01 656913-9 Chatrium Hotel 40 Natmauk Rd, Tarmwe. tel: 544500. fax: 544400.

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No. 205, Corner of Wadan Street & Min Ye Kyaw Swa Road, Lanmadaw Tsp, Yangon. Myanmar. Tel: (95-1) 212850 ~ 3, 229358 ~ 61, Fax: (95-1) 212854. info@myanmarpandahotel .com http://www. PARKROYAL Yangon, Myanmar 33, Alan Pya Pagoda Rd, Dagon tsp. tel: 250388. fax: 252478. email: enquiry.prygn@ parkroyalhotels. com.


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Reservation Office (Yangon) 123, Alanpya Pagoda Rd, Dagon Township. Tel : 951-255 819-838 Hotel Max (Chaung Tha Beach) Tel : 042-423 46-9, 042-421 33. Email : maxhotelsreservation@

(Nay Pyi Taw)

Confort Inn 4, Shweli Rd, Bet: Inya Rd & U Wisara Rd, Kamaryut, tel: 525781, 526872

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Emergency Numbers
Ambulance tel: 295133. Fire tel: 191, 252011, 252022. Police emergency tel: 199. Police headquarters tel: 282541, 284764. Red Cross tel:682600, 682368 Traffic Control Branch tel:298651 Department of Post & Telecommunication tel: 591384, 591387. Immigration tel: 286434. Ministry of Education tel:545500m 562390 Ministry of Sports tel: 370604, 370605 Ministry of Communications tel: 067-407037. Myanma Post & Telecommunication (MPT) tel: 067407007. Myanma Post & Tele-communication (Accountant Dept) tel: 254563, 370768. Ministry of Foreign Affairs tel: 067-412009, 067-412344. Ministry of Health tel: 067-411358-9. Yangon City Development Committee tel: 248112. HOSPITALS Central Women’s Hospital tel: 221013, 222811. Children Hospital tel: 221421, 222807 Ear, Nose & Throat Hospital tel: 543888. Naypyitaw Hospital (emergency) tel: 420096. Worker’s Hospital tel: 554444, 554455, 554811. Yangon Children Hospital tel: 222807, 222808, 222809. Yangon General Hospital (East) tel: 292835, 292836, 292837. Yangon General Hospital (New) tel: 384493, 384494, 384495, 379109. Yangon General Hospital (West) tel: 222860, 222861, 220416. Yangon General Hospital (YGH) tel: 256112, 256123, 281443, 256131. ELECTRICITY Power Station tel:414235 POST OFFICE General Post Office 39, Bo Aung Kyaw St. (near British Council Library). tel: 285499. INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT Yangon International Airport tel: 662811. YANGON PORT Shipping (Coastal vessels) tel: 382722 RAILWAYS Railways information tel: 274027, 202175-8.

No. (356/366), Kyaikkasan Rd, Tamwe Township, Yangon, Myanmar. Ph: 542826, Fax: 545650 Email: reservation@

M-22, Shwe Htee Housing, Thamine Station St., Near the Bayint Naung Point, Mayangone Tsp., Yangon Tel : 522763, 522744, 667557. Fax : (95-1) 652174 E-mail : grandpalace@

The First Air conditioning systems designed to keep you fresh all day Zeya & Associates Co., Ltd. No.437 (A), Pyay Road, Kamayut. P., O 11041 Yangon, Tel: +(95-1) 502016-18, Mandalay- Tel: 02-60933. Nay Pyi Taw- Tel: 067-420778, E-mail : com. URL: http://www.


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Lobby Bar Parkroyal Yangon, Myanmar. 33, Alan Pya Phaya Road, Dagon Tsp. tel: 250388. Lemon Day Spa No. 96 F, Inya Road, Kamaryut Tsp, Yangon. Tel: 514848, 09-732-08476. E.mail: lemondayspa.2011

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Life Fitness Bldg A1, Rm No. 001, Shwekabar Housing, Mindhamma Rd, Mayangone Tsp. Yangon. Ph: 01-656511, Fax: 01-656522, Hot line: 0973194684,

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Bldg-D, Rm (G-12), Pearl Condo, Ground Flr, Kabaraye Pagoda Rd, Bahan Tsp. Tel: 557448. Ext 814, 09-730-98872.

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World famous Kobe Beef Near Thuka Kabar Hospital on Pyay Rd, Marlar st, Hlaing Tsp. Tel: +95-1-535072 Horizon Int’l School 25, Po Sein Road, Bahan Tsp, tel : 541085, 551795, 551796, 450396~7. fax : 543926, email : contact@horizonmyanmar. com, INTERNATIONAL MONTESSORI MYANMAR (Pre-K, Primary) 55 (B) Po Sein Road, Bahan Tsp, Yangon, Tel: 01-546097, 546761. City Mart (Myaynigone Branch) tel: 510697. (9:00 am to 10:00 pm) City Mart (Zawana Branch) tel:564532. (9:00 am to 9:00 pm) City Mart (Shwe Mya Yar) tel: 294063. (9:00 am to 9:00 pm) City Mart (Chinatown Point) tel: 215560~63. (9:00 am to 10:00 pm) City Mart (Junction Maw Tin) tel: 218159. (9:00 am to 9:00 pm) City Mart (Marketplace) tel: 523840~43. City Mart (78th Brahch-Mandalay) tel: 02-71467~9. IKON Mart No.332, Pyay Rd, San Chaung. Tel: 535-783, 527705, 501429. Email: sales-ikon@


RISK & INSURANCE SOLUTIONS Tel: (09) 40 15 300 73

Moby Dick Tours Co., Ltd. Islands Safari in the Mergui Archipelago 5 Days, 7 Days, 9 Days Trips Tel: 95 1 202063, 202064 E-mail: info@islandsafari Website: www.


Legendary Myanmar Int’l Shipping & Logistics Co., Ltd. No-9, Rm (A-4), 3rd Flr, Kyaung St, Myaynigone, Sanchaung Tsp, Yangon. Tel: 516827, 523653, 516795. Mobile. 09-512-3049. Email: legandarymyr@ .mm

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Heaven Pizza 38/40, Bo Yar Nyunt St. Yaw Min Gyi Quarter, Dagon Township. Tel: 09-855-1383

Indian Fine Dining & Bar Bldg No. 12, Yangon Int’l Compound, Ahlone Road. Tel: 01-2302069, 09-43185008, 09-731-60662.

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Ingo Positions
RELIEF International is seeking Head of Rakhine Response Programme in Sittwe Rakhine State. Qualifications & requirements: Higher education degree from an accredited institution of higher education in a relevant field of study. Minimum of five years’ field program experience including at least 3 years of management. Strong verbal and written skills as well as ability to multi-task effectively. Excellent oral communication skills and writing ability in English. Burmese language ability is a plus Interested candidates should send their cover letter, CV and names of three referees to Relief International at quoting “Head of Rakhine Response Programme” in the subject line. The deadline for submission of applications is not later than 9.00 am Myanmar time on 31 October 2013. Only short listed candidates will be notified. WORLD VISION Myanmar is seeking (1) Community Develop ment Facilitator - 2 post in Hlaing Bwe, Kayin State: University Bachelor Degree in any discipline. Competent in used of Microsoft Word, Excel & Power Point. Good command of Myanmar & English. Demonstrated commit ment to World Vision values, mission, vision. Must provide a clean criminal background.(2) Operations Assistant (Coastal Zone) in Dawei, Tanintharyi Region: University Bachelor Degree in any discipline. 2 years experience in the field of Job Evaluation & Grading. Excellent computer aptitude & experience with word processing, database management & spread sheet software. Must provide a clean criminal background. Pls submit resume (clearly identify the post you apply) by post to HR Department, or in person to application drop-box at No (18), Shin Saw Pu Rd, Ahlone, Sanchaung PO or send to Closing date : October 9, 2013. SOLIDARITES is seeking HR Officer 1 post in Sittwe, Rakhine State : Any University degree. Fluent in English & Myanmar. Good computer skill. Preferable have the knowledge of Homere software (HR software of Solidarites int'l) acceptable who can learn quickly. Pls submit application (CV, cover letter, references) to : Solidarites Int'l office : 44-A, Tharyarwaddy Lane, Bahan, Yangon or per email: hr.recruitment., cc: to rks.admassist.stw@ solidarites-myanmar. org, Closing date: 11st October, 2013. 510972. A NEW established boutique public relation company is seeking a young and energetic staff to join the team. Office Secretary - F 1 Post : Need good English and able to translate Myanmar to English in general. 1 year experience in the similar position. Able to use Words, Excel, Power Point and Email. Able to work with team, multitasking and work under pressure with minimum supervision. Excellent interpersonal skills. Office hour 9 am to 5 pm (Only week days). If you are interested in growing your experience with us please send an application nicluding CV with expected salary to not later than 8 October 2013. COUPLE in Pearl Condo looking for lady cleaning and cooking (foreigner food), Free Sunday. Call : 09-516-32 03. LEGENDARY Myanmar Co., Ltd. Export/ Import Department: (1) Customer Clearance M/F 2 Post. Travel & Tour Department: (2) Tour Operator - F 2 Posts. (3) Office Staff - M/F 2 Posts. Requirements: 1 year experience. All applicants must be University Graduate, Spoken & written English, Excellent interpersonal skill and good computer knowledge. Pls apply CV with 2 recent photo, NRC copy, Labour registration card, Police recommendation letter & other document to, 9, Rm (A-4), 3rd Flr, Kyaung St, Myaynigone, Sanchaung. WE ARE currently inviting the dynamic applications for highly motivated specialists and individuals, with a passion for excellence, for the following positions; Translator cum Site Coordinator 2 Posts at Oil & Gas Sites in Sagaing Division. Function: Translation. Main Specifications: Translate and convert from written words from Russian to Myanmar or English and vice versa. Coordinate logistics functions at sites accordingly. BA in Russian or advance level course in Russian or Russian tour guide. Skill Set: Incumbent should be fluent in Russian, English and Burmese language. Precious experiences in translating Russian to Myanmar, Russian to English and vice versa. Skills in MS office suite and able to handle multi tasks. Able to stay and work at both sites in Saging Division. For all the above-mentioned posts, all candidates must be: Independent, well-organized, selfmotivated & team-player; Good interpersonal and communication skills; Collaborative, hands on & dynamic personalities. Pls send full CV, detailing Skills, knowledge & experience with recent color passport photo to yogsmyanmar@gmail. com by email or submit hard copy to room 1406, 14th Flr, Sakura Tower. Closing date : 15thOctober 2013 (or) until suitable candidate is defined. SAVOY HOTEL, Yangon is urgently looking for (1) Guest Relation Manager - 1 post, Must have at least 3 years experience in related field, Very good English skill & interpersonal skill. (2)Driver - M 2 posts (1 post as personal driver, 1 post as hotel driver) must have at least 3 years experience, must be able to speak English. Application letter by email to savoy. or 129, Dhammazedi Rd, Yangon. Tel: 526298, 526289. INT'L SCHOOL (YIS) is seeking (1).Secretary to Athletic Director (M/F) : Pleasant personality & have experience in secretarial work & good communication skills (2).Maintenance Supervisor (M/F) : Experiences in supervising the maintenance needs of housing, hotel or school. This includes supervision of electrical, AC, plumbing, and carpentry needs. For all posts :A university graduate. Fluent in English & Myanmar. Good IT skills (Knowledge of word, excel, power point). Ability to work with others as a team, work under pressure and also work independently when necessary. More than 2 years of work experience. Pls send application with updated CV, educational credentials & references to james@yismyanmar. com YIS, 117, Thumin galar Lannmagyi, Thumingalar housing, Thingangyun, Ph: 578171, 09-420163769, Closing date : October 8, 2013. WE ARE seeking(1) Accountant - M/F 1 Post : Age above 26 , Good in English, 3 years relevant experience, Able to prepare & handle full set of accounts, Maintain and supervise accounting procedures, Good knowledge of Microsoft Advanced Excel & Accounting Software. (2)Admin/ Accounts Assistant 1 Post : Age above 23, Good in English, 2 years experience, Good organizational skills, Computer literate: MS Word/Excel/Email. Pls contact : 09-506-9346, 09-512-8164. A WELL -established company is looking for highly-motivated engineers. Successful candidates will be employed as service engineers for installation & maintenance of advanced medical equipments including CT scanner. Candidates must: Have a Bachelor Degree in Electronic or equivalent. Good command of spoken English. Willing to travel within and abroad Myanmar. Previous working experience is preferable, but not a necessity as the company will provide the necessary training. Pls submit application form along with the C.V & recent photograph to Rm 2-C, Shwe Padauk Condominium, 99/A, Myay Nu St, Sanchaung, Yangon within 2 weeks.

TEACHERS who have got Teaching experience in Singapore,Intl School (primary & seconday levels) AEIS, PSLE, GCSE, SAT, IELTS, TOEFL, English-Myamar Speaking Class for company, Sayar Bryan, (ME) 09-4200-7 0692 TEACHING ENGLISH: English for Young LearnersandHighSchool Graduates Qualified and experienced teacher. Using International Syllabuses. Available for small groups or Individual. Ph: 01- 291679 , 09-250-136695. TEACHERS who have got Teaching experience in Singapore, Int'l School (primary & seconday levels) AEIS, PSLE, GCSE, SAT, IELTS, TOEFL, EnglishMyamar Speaking Class for company, Sayar Bryan, (ME) 09-4200-7 0692. "SCHOLAR Teaching Organization" founded with ME,BE & Master Degree holder with 12 years experience in teaching field. Role and Responsibility: Making the students develop problem solving skills, critical thinking skills and I.Q & E.Q enriching skills, Int'l School (ILBC, Total, MISY, ISY, PISM, Horizon, ISM, network, M, MIS, MLA, ES4E, DSY RV). All grades, All Subjects .....Singapore MOE Exams (AEIS, S-AEIS, IGCSE, IELTS, TOFEL..Tr.Daniel Caulin : 09-215-0075. Tr.Bryan :09-4200-70692. GIVE your child the best possible start to life at International Montessori Myanmar (English Education Center), Accredited by IMC Bangkok (Since 1991), Our Montessori curriculum includes: Practical Life Exercises, Sensorial Training. Language D e v e l o p m e n t , Mathematics, Cultural Studies, Botany & Zoology, History, Creative Art, Music and Movement, Cooking, Physical Development, Social & Emotional Development, Learning

PROFESSIONAL English Speaking Tour Car Driver Mr. SONNY Car Rental Service[Maw @ AUNG (Mya Mya Aung) Guide or English translator/Interpreter] : Mr. Sonny: 09-420048040. MONTHLY PAYMENT BELTA CAR RENTAL RATE with Professional English Speaking Tour Car Driver Sort of Car : BELTA: Tour grade with filly aircon, Saloon 3 Seater, 2008 Model, 1000CC, 550000 Ks/ month (Car fees 450000 +Driver fees 10000 only) VIRGIN LAND Tours :Visa Services, Worldwide Air Ticketing, Worldwide Hotel Reservation, All Kind Transportation Rental, Inbound & Outbound Tour Operator, Tour Guide Services , Ph: 01-8610252, 09512-3793, 09-520-2643 GREAT ESCAPE Travels & Tours Our services : FIT tour & Group tour package, Hotel reservation, Guide services, Chinese to Mynamar to Chinese translation service, Car rental service, Visa Application. Contact person : Kelly Dong : 09-4301-8077 FUTURE WINGS Travels & Tours Co., Ltd, Akhoon Int'l Trading Co., Ltd. Authorized Money Changer : 25, Konzaydan St, Pabedan Tsp. Ph: 243441, 249189, Email : akhoon.maneychanger NYAN MYINT THU Car Rental Service : Ko Nyan Myint Win Kyi (MD) - 56, Bo Ywe St, Latha, Yangon, Myanmar. Ph : 01-246551, 01-375284. Hp:09-2132778. il:nyanmyintthu1983@, nmt@nyan myintthucarrental. com, colwinkyi@ Web:www. nyanmyintthucarrental. com

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TRAVELS & TOURS Co., Ltd. is seeking (1) Tour Operation Manager - M/F 1 Post : 3 years experience in travel & tours company. Perfect English language. Perfect able In-bound and Out-bound tours. Strong sales and customer service focus. Above to handle group & individual tour, package & highly motivated & resourceful. (2)Tour Reservation International/ Domestic M/F 1 Post :Any graduate. 1 year experience in tourism related field. Strong sales & customer service focus. Good communication in English. (3) Tour Operation Staff - M/F 1 Post : 1 year experience in tourism related field. Excellent interpersonal skills & communication skills. Possess computer proficiency: Microsoft Word, Excel & Outlook. Strong attention to detail while working in fast paced environment. Good in English. Pls send a detailed resume with recent photo & other relevant documents to HR Manager in person at 140(B) Damazadi Rd, Bahan, Yangon. Ph:

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ORIGINAL 3DS Game Cartridges & accessories - Spirit Camrea: The Cursed Memoir (with box and user guide booklet) - 20000 Kyats, Rabbid Rumble (with box & user guide booklet) - 20000 Kyats, Super Street Fighter IV: 3D Edition (with box and user guide booklet) - 24000 Kyats, Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate (with box & user guide booklet) - 30000 Kyats, - Project X Zone (with box and user guide booklet) - 30000 Kyats, 3DS Game Cartridge Holder (24 Slots) - 17000 Kyats, Circle Pad Pro for 3DS XL - 30000 Kyats. Prices are negotiable. Ph: 09-507-9980". 9% NEW SAMSUNG Series 5 Ultra Book Intel Core i5 Ram 8GB H.D.D + SSD Display 13.3 1 Year 6 Month International Warranty. Price : 650000. Ph : 094200-50651 ASUS A42J Intel Core i7 Ram 4GB H.D.D 500GB

Public Notices
NEW PROGRAM at Wisdom Management Centre : Business Psychology & Manage ment, Level : Advanced Certificate, Duration : 12-Week, Fees : 95,000 Ks. Start Date : October 6, 2013 (Sunday) Day : Sunday (9:00 AM – 12:30 PM), Trainer: Dr. Myo Min Oo: Ph.D. (New Orleans), D.Min. (Indiana), M.S.B. (Notre Dame), Professor, Christian Theological Seminary. Principal, Wisdom Management Centre Advisor, Gracious Life Ministry International Training Director, Centre

62 Sport


Qatar offsides on labour issue
CLAIMS that migrant workers are treated like slaves in 2022 World Cup host Qatar were centre stage on October 3 as global football’s governing body FIFA met behind closed doors. Already scheduled to debate shifting the 2022 edition from the World Cup’s traditional June and July slot in order to escape the stifling Gulf heat – a plan which has angered European leagues that fear mid-season havoc – FIFA found the spotlight shifting to alleged human rights abuses against the workers paving the pay for the tournament. FIFA boss Sepp Blatter was scheduled to brief journalists on Friday about the outcome of its two-day executive committee session at its Zurich base. But with campaigners charging that workers are paying with their lives to prepare for the global football showcase, both FIFA and Qatar tackled the concerns with waiting reporters. With Qatar’s stadium-building program yet to begin, the deaths are not directly related to the football side of the World Cup, FIFA communications chief Walter De Gregorio underlined. “But any death is a death too many,” he said. “We are very much aware of the situation.” “Together, I think, we’re going to find a solution to improve, or maybe to change, the situation that for sure, for everybody, is unacceptable,” he said. FIFA has held regular discussions with international human rights groups and unions for two years, De Gregorio noted. “We’re trying to put pressure on Qatar to change a situation which is unacceptable for all concerned. But I want to highlight that it’s not FIFA against Qatar. We’re all on the same page, trying to change the situation for the better of everyone. Qatar can change, and Qatar is very open to all discussions we’re having,” he added. Hassan Al Thawadi, head of Qatar’s World Cup committee, said worker deaths were a stark issue and insisted the government was dealing with it. “When you reach the point where people die, it always raises issues of humanity. Is this acceptable? Of course it isn’t. The government has said so quite clearly,” he said as he arrived at FIFA’s building in a leafy suburb overlooking Zurich. “We are going to ensure the security, the protection and the honour of everyone. We’ve worked to that pledge, will continue to do so, and will always give it the utmost priority,” he added. The rights issue reached fever pitch after a report last week by British daily The Guardian on Nepalese workers at World Cup projects. Quoting documents from Nepal’s embassy in Qatar it said thousands of Nepalese – at 370,000 the second-largest group of labourers in Qatar after Indians – faced “modern-day slavery” and that dozens had died in recent weeks. Beyond the fatalities, critics also slam the confiscation of passports, withholding wages for long periods, debts to recruiters, insufficient drinking water in scorching temperatures and squalid camps for labourers. The World Cup has added intensity to ongoing criticism of several Gulf states’ rules on foreign workers. Amnesty International said it would publish an in-depth report next month on Qatar, the world’s wealthiest nation per capita. “The combination of forms of exploitation in certain cases that we have documented, we would consider that to amount to forced labour,” James Lynch, Amnesty’s researcher on foreign workers in the Gulf, told AFP. Four dozen Swiss and international trade union activists hammered home the message by rallying at FIFA’s gates, brandishing referee-style red cards. Qatar denies the claims. “There is no slavery or forced labour in Qatar,” said Ali al-Marri, chairman of its National Human Rights Committee. Qatar has commissioned a probe by global law firm DLA Piper, saying it takes its international commitments seriously, and announced plans to double its number of labour inspectors to 150. That failed to satisfy that International Trade Union Confederation, which raised the alarm in August and is sending a delegation to Qatar this week. “There are already labour inspectors and they have no impact,” said its head Sharan Burrow. “The construction frenzy for the football World Cup risks costing the lives of at least 4000 workers over the next seven years if steps are not taken to guarantee the rights of migrant workers,” she added. – AFP


A ‘bluffer’s guide’ to the 27th Southeast Asian Games

PÉTANQUE has been an ever present fixture at the Southeast Asian Games since its debut at the Kuala Lumpur Games of 2001. Nay Pyi Taw 2013 will be its seventh appearance. Where does it originate? Often referred to as French boules, pétanque is actually just one specific and modern variant of that umbrella term for a variety of target games played by throwing metal or wooden balls. Pétanque can therefore trace its lineage back to games played by centurions across the Roman Empire. That said, in its current format pétanque only dates back to 1907 when the game of jeu de provençal, from the same said region of Southeast France was adapted to create a game where the players deliver the ball (or boule) from a stationary position. This unique feature of the game is reflected in its name, pétanque, derived from an adaptation or corruption of the local Occitan phrase for “feet anchored.” What’s it all about? This December, singles, pairs or teams of three will play in direct competition against their opponents. Their simple aim is to get their heavy metal balls closer to the smaller, lighter target ball than the opposition manages. Achieving said aim will acquire points; first to 13 points wins the game. The SEA Games will also include a shooting version of the game. This skills test removes the strategic side of the game and instead presents the competitor with a series of standardized challenges. How do you play? Legs together, knees bent–some say pétanque is the only game you can play squatting. Players take turns standing in a small circle from which they toss a metallic ball that they hold palm-down in order to exert backspin and control on the ball. Unlike in other similar sports, there must be no weighting or bias to the ball. The balls are thrown between 6 and 10 metres towards the jack (or cochonnet), a smaller wooden ball that acts as the moveable target. The team that threw the jack delivers the first ball before the opposition looks to put their ball closer. If they fail then they must continue to play until they manage the feat and “hold point.” If a team runs out of balls then the opposition will have free shots at the target without any fear of response. If you win an end then you’ll throw the cochonnet the next time. This means that you’ve not only won the points but you now have the chance to dictate the game and gather momentum. If the jack is knocked from the gravel court (or terrain), then neither team will score any points, unless only one team has boules left to play, in which case they’ll get a point for every ball remaining. How do you win? A team will generally begin with a player known as a pointer, a specialist who is more likely to use finesse to manoeuvre the ball close to the target. Tactics and strategy will come into play but should the need for a more direct route become apparent then they will turn to the shooter. This player is more aggressive in their approach and their delivery is most often focused toward removing their opponents’ ball from the reckoning. Teams will generally look to

Pétanque players compete in Bryant Park, New York City, in April 2011. Photo: Marek Rygielski


Our ‘bluffer’s guide’ to the SEA Games focuses on those sports that may never make it to the Olympics but whose elite will get their chance to compete for international gold this December. Many of these sports grew up in Southeast Asia, but this week our attentions turn to a sport that may have originated in Europe but has been fervently adopted across the region, particularly in those with a French colonial past.

Championships in 2007 and in 1997 was joined by Cambodia, Laos, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam as founder members of the Asian Pétanque and Sports Boules Confederation (APSBC) in 1997. Myanmar only joined the IFPP this year but commentators have likened the sport to a traditional Myanmar marble game and so hope to adapt well. How many medals are available? There will be 11 golds up for grabs this year. Males and females compete in individual competitions as well as pairs, triples and a shooting contest. There will also be three mixed events, including a pair format, and two forms of mixed triples, one made up from two males and one female and the other reversing the ratio. What’s the betting? At the last SEA Games there were only 6 events, with male and female versions of the singles, doubles and shooting competitions. Thailand secured three of the medals with the men’s singles, shooting and women’s doubles. The Laotian women tasted success by claiming the other female gold medals and the Cambodian male doubles completed the list of victors. This year with so many more events, including the mixed competition, there may be chance for a few surprises. Don’t rule out Vietnam, particularly in the mixed events as at the 2011 games they found themselves on the podium in every event. Myanmar’s federation is young and so its competitors are likely to be inexperienced but they have been in intensive training over the last months. They’ve held joint training camps with Thailand and Laos, as well as attending a tournament in Brunei. A lot of work has gone into the developing of this team and in their home games they will surely be hopeful of securing a medal or two. Where will it all happen? The pétanque will be hosted in Nay Pyi Taw, with the action getting under way on December 12 and concluding on December 21. Matt Roebuck is a sports writer and sports development consultant based in Yangon. He is the author of the book The Other Olympics, published in 2012.

combine a mixture of abilities but an individual player must of course be able to function as an all-rounder. Whatever the tactics dictate, it’s a matter of getting your or your team’s balls closest to the jack and being the first to 13 points. In singles and doubles each player has three balls; in triples each player has two. What should you be saying? “Il est fanny” (he’s fanny) or “Il a fait fanny” (he made fanny). When a player has lost without scoring a point, they have said to have mettre fanny and therefore must kiss the bottom of a girl called Fanny. “That was an excellent carreau.” This should be used when a shooter knocks the opponent’s ball out of the way while leaving his boule at or very near the point of impact. For those in the shooting competition, this is their constant aim. Where is it played? The International Federation of Pétanque and Provençal game (IFPP) has over 600,000 individuals registered in 94 countries as licensed to participate in official competitions, whilst the number of casual participants is likely in the tens of millions. Obviously popular in France, the sport has developed across the Francophone world and notably Southeast Asia. Thailand hosted the World

A member of Building and Wood Workers’ International (BWI) and Swiss Unia unions holds the red card reading “A red card for FIFA, no World Cup without labour rights” in Zurich on October 3. Photo: AFP


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Disabled athletes take stage at National ParaGames
KYAW ZIN HLAING THE 25th National ParaGames will open on October 12 in Yangon. The ParaGames, organised by the Myanmar Disabled Sports Federation, will run until October 14 at Thuwana Stadium and other venues around the city. Around 400 disabled athletes are scheduled to compete in a dozen sports, including athletics, swimming, football, basketball and volleyball. The country-wide competition will serve as a warm-up for the 7th Southeast Asian ParaGames, which Myanmar will host in January 2014. “Before the 7th Southeast Asian ParaGames, this local tournament is held for Myanmar disabled athletes. Through this event they can learn their strengths and weaknesses and can prepare for the upcoming international competition,” said U Peter, secretary of the Myanmar Disabled Sports Federation. Prior to the opening on October 12, the Myanmar Disabled Sports Federation provided training to athletes at Aung San Stadium with the help of 60 coaches. A coach from Japan will arrive in December to work with the swimming team. “This tournament is very good for the athletes because their morale will grow,” said Ko Aung Myo Myint, coach of Myanmar’s disabled basketball team. The Disabled Sports Federation has high hopes for the upcoming ParaGames, having finished 6th in the 2011 Games, held in Indonesia. Myanmar was able to collect 11 gold medals and 31 medals overall.
Bayern Munich’s forward Thomas Muller celebrates during an away match against Manchester City on October 2. Photo: AFP



Dazzling Bayern can improve, warns Guardiola
ing these players,” said the former Barcelona coach. “They’ve shown how good they are in the last four years, reaching three finals of the Champions League.” However, although he conceded that he had seen his side’s best performance of the season to date, Guardiola warned that his players will need to improve their defending of set pieces if they are to repeat last season’s triumphs. “Our set-up plays were a catastrophe, were terrible. We have to improve that,” he said. “In general I’m so happy, but it’s not the end. It’s not the final of the Champions League, it’s just the second game of our round, so we have time to improve and recover players. Little, little steps forward.” The only disappointment for the visitors, Negredo’s goal aside, was the late dismissal of former City defender Jerome Boateng for a last-man foul on Yaya Toure, but Guardiola said he had no complaints about the decision. City manager Manuel Pellegrini displayed a much less sunny disposition in his post-match press conference, declaring that his team had played “really bad”. An error from Joe Hart enabled Franck Ribery to put Bayern ahead in the seventh minute, with Thomas Mueller and Arjen Robben adding quick-fire goals early in the second half before City finally awoke. It was the latest in a string of blunders by Hart, whose performances have already come under scrutiny this season, but Pellegrini refused to lay the blame at the door of the England goalkeeper. “You must analyse the team, that’s your duty. I analyse individual players, I analyse the team,” he told reporters. “I think we didn’t play well. Of course, I think the three goals we can do it better, not only the goalkeeper. And you can concede goals to Bayern Munich because it’s a strong team.” The defeat followed hot on the heels of a 3-2 loss at Aston Villa in the Premier League and Pellegrini admitted that he was mystified by the failings exhibited by his team. “We started playing well, but after the first goal, our team felt the goal and we started losing the ball and that’s very dangerous with this team,” said the Chilean, who has failed to beat Guardiola in nine encounters. “Of course I was surprised by the game we played today. The goal of Negredo was just a little thing at the end of the match, but I think the difference between Bayern Munich and Manchester City was the difference you saw today the whole game.” Nonetheless, Pellegrini insisted that his team “have the level to try to qualify to the round of 16”. “This was an important match – not a decisive match, but a very important match – and I think that me and all the players, we know exactly what we must improve in the Champions League.” – AFP


ANAGER Pep Guardiola watched his Bayern Munich team outclass Manchester City 3-1 and then warned the rest of Europe that the Champions League holders can get even better. Bayern produced a display of dizzying control at the Etihad Stadium on October 2, dominating possession of the ball and attacking in relentless waves that threatened to engulf Manuel Pellegrini’s side. At 3-0 up, the visitors began to exchange passes with almost disdainful ease, before a goal from Alvaro Negredo gave a measure of respectability to the scoreline as City mustered some belated resistance. Guardiola has been given the unenviable task of improving a team that won the Champions League, the Bundesliga and the German Cup under Jupp Heynckes last season, but he says he is relishing the challenge. “I’m lucky to be here, to be train-

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