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Mon State government to sponsor traditional Karen ‘wrist tying’ ceremonies
Burma News International, 29/07/2017
A Mon State official has pledged K16 million (US$11,800) for a traditional Karen wrist trying ceremony, an event celebrating Karen culture and unity. “We are emphasizing development, and trying our best to support tradition and culture,” said Saw Myint Khine, Mon State’s Karen Affairs Minister. The annual wrist tying ceremony is celebrated on the full moon day of Wagaung to ward off evil spirits. This year, the full moon day of Wagaung falls on August 7. The state funding will be dispersed among 18 venues in Mon State which plan to hold wrist tying ceremonies, Saw Myint Khine added. This is the first time the Mon State government has allocated funding for the wrist tying event. In past years, the state government has sponsored Karen New Year ceremonies, and Karen literature courses. “Last year’s ceremony cost around K2 million. The Karen Literature and Culture Co...
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Ethnic armed groups discuss cooperating at Chiang Mai meet
Burma News International, 14/07/2017
Leaders from ceasefire signatory and non-signatory ethnic armed groups are meeting in Chiang Mai this week to discuss cooperation on the peace process. The meeting involves representatives from both the Delegation for Political Negotiation (DPN) – a body under the auspices of the non-signatory coalition the United Nationalities Federal Council – and the Peace Process Working Team (PPWT), which is comprised of the eight signatories to the nationwide ceasefire agreement (NCA). Khu Oo Reh, leader of the DPN, said potential for collaboration in several areas will be discussed. “We are holding this meeting to review and amend [the process] together and to try to establish consensus since it is very important for this process to have approval from both sides,” he said. The two-day meeting will cover issues surrounding the Panglong Handbook, the framework for political dialo...
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Myanmar opens arms for the first foreign company to build an oil and gas supply base
Mizzima, 13/07/2017
MOSB Limited (MOSB), has received approval from the Myanmar Investment Commission (MIC) on 11July, 2017 to build and operate a supply base in Mon State, with the endorsement from the Ministry of Energy. The establishment of a supply base will support the fast-growing oil and gas industry in Myanmar and provide necessary infrastructure, health, education and employment opportunities to those in the region. This will further advance the industry by reducing travel distances and increasing efficiency. MOSB is committed to the growth of Myanmar and to supporting the communities in Mon State. As part of the project, MOSB will invest in the development of wide-ranging infrastructure and improvements to existing transportation and telecommunication linkages. Additionally, MOSB has plans to provide educational, medical and social services to enhance the network for business growth and ec...
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Mon State establishes investment committ
Mon News Agency, 15/07/2017
The Mon State Investment Committee started on July 7 and is headed by Chief Minister U Aye Zan, with U Myint Lwin, deputy director of the Mon State Directorate of Investment and Company Administration, as secretary. The seven-member committee will meet twice weekly. State and region-level investment committees are permitted to review investments worth less than $5 million (K6 billion) without first seeking permission from Nay Pyi Taw. Investments above that threshold need to go through the central-level MIC, according to the MIC Notification Letter 11/2017, announced in March. State and regional investment committees are supposed to be set up around the country, each one led by the respective chief minister. “We need to scrutinize the companies that are investing in the state and decide on whether their projects should be allowed,” said U Wunna Kyaw, Mon State Minister o...
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Low-cost clinic reopened in Kyaukkyi
Burma News International, 25/07/2017
The Ther Ray Dao Pae Rehabilitation and Development Association, a community-based organization, relaunched the clinic on July 22. It had initially opened in June 2016, but shut soon after due to a lack of certified medical personnel in the area, according to clinic manager Saw Mann Shin. “We have reopened this clinic with doctors assigned by the Department of Public Health. The doctors and nurses hold official licenses. The clinic now offers an ultrasound service, which was not available in Kyaukkyi township before. We expect the clinic to reach the level of a teaching hospital [once we receive permission],” he said. To boost the medical capacity in the remote location, he clinic aims to teach more local health care personnel once they build up the training center. The Ther Ray Dao Pae Rehabilitation and Development Association’s clinic is support by Earth Mission, A US-b...
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Finance and human resource effecting Myanmar’s healthcare sector
Myanmar Times, 30/06/2017
Thailand which is Myanmar’s immediate neighbour, yearly earns millions of foreign currency from overseas patients by providing them with international standard treatments and its state-of-the-art medical facilities where as Myanmar due to lack of human resources and finance makes it is difficult even to cover the local healthcare sector. According to the ASEAN healthcare communiqué, some ASEAN member countries receive assistance to provide international standard healthcare compared to some western nations so health services are even much cheaper. Therefore, these countries yearly receive millions of dollars from overseas patients who come for medical treatment. Thailand’s medical tourism earns US$ 2 billion per year which is about 40 percent of other ASEAN counties health tourism sector. Although questions were raised at Hluttaw sessions regarding healthcare, reply from th...
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Saving Cultures in Karenni
The Irrawaddy, 13/07/2017
DEMOSO TOWNSHIP, Karenni State — Mou Mi, 53, is one of roughly 70 Kayan women known as the “long-necked people” who wear bronze neck rings, a disappearing tradition among the ethnic group in Karenni State. The way of life for people in her village and nearby Kayan villages in Demoso Township has been the same for generations: farming, breeding animals, hand-weaving clothes, and crafting bamboo household wares. In the last two years, however, their village has become more known to outsiders, since the introduction of community-based tourism. With distinctive cultures and untouched scenery, Karenni State has attracted thousands of foreign tourists and even more domestic visitors since the previous government opened access to the area in 2013. The decision came months after its biggest ethnic armed group, the Karenni National Progressive Party, signed a ceasefire agreement wit...
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Majority of Joint Ceasefire Monitoring Committee Complaints are Territorial Disputes
The Irrawaddy, 06/07/2017
YANGON — the Union-level joint ceasefire monitoring committee (JMC) said almost 70 percent of the complaints it has received were territorial disputes that would soon be assessed by verification teams. The JMC’s role includes monitoring the ceasefire implementation for signatories of the nationwide ceasefire agreement (NCA). The JMC held its 11th regular meeting from July 3-5 in Yangon’s National Reconciliation and Peace Center office. The meeting focused on issues related to monitoring the ceasefire implementation, complaint verification, local participation in ceasefire monitoring, and the development of standard operating procedures (SOPs). Since its formation in late 2015 following the signing of the NCA in October of that year, the JMC established state- and regional-level joint ceasefire monitoring sub-committees in five locations in Karen, Mon and Shan states, and B...
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Solar Roots take hold in Myanmar's remote corners
Frontier Myanmar, 11/07/2017
ONE of the greatest challenges facing Myanmar in coming years will be to provide electrical power to villages in remote regions of the country. With the national grid reaching barely one-third of homes, advocates of renewable energy believe that solar power is one of the best solutions, especially given the many hours of sunlight that the country is blessed with. Mr Bruce Gardiner is one such advocate. A retired electrician and solar contractor, in 2010 he established a foundation called Solar Roots to improve the lives of people living in remote areas through photovoltaic (PV) systems. “The difficulties posed by distance and terrain in Myanmar make solar an automatic choice for remote communities,” Gardiner said. “Also, small solar home systems are perfect for first-time electrical consumers, even if it’s just for lights and phone-charging.” Over the past 10 years ...
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Bilateral committee to discuss Thailand’s new employment rules
Frontier Myanmar, 11/07/2017
Myanmar and Thailand are have agreed at high-level talks to establish a committee to address labour problems arising from the kingdom’s new migrant worker rules, the Bangkok Post reported on July 8. The decision to create the joint working committee was made by the Minister for Labour, Immigration and Population, U Thein Swe, and his Thai counterpart, General Sirichai Distakul, at a meeting in Nay Pyi Taw on July 7, the newspaper said in an online report. The meeting followed confusion over the tough new rules for migrant workers, announced on June 23, the daily said. Thailand’s military junta was forced to suspend enforcement of the rules for 120 days amid chaotic scenes after tens of thousands of frightened migrant workers returned to their home countries, the Bangkok Post said. It quoted Mr Varanon Peetiwan, the director-general of Thailand’s Employment Department, as ...
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