1 HEARTBEAT OF THE NATION 1200 Ks. CONNECT WITH ISSUE 706 DECEMBER 2-8, 2013 SMS Facebook facebook.com/themyanmartimes Quarto reopens as trial begins Investment rules set for overhaul The government will amend rules issued under the new Foreign Investment Law in coming months based on feedback from ministries. BUSINESS 20 GANDHI HALL SAVED FROM TRUSTEES NEWS 4 ANALYSIS 9 Daw Suu and the home front As Daw Aung San Suu Kyi was feted during her Australian tour last week, questions continued to be asked about her ability to satisfy the aspirations of the country s minority groups. AYE THIDAR KYAW THOMAS KEAN QUARTO Products is set to resume deliveries this week, more than a month after it was shut down amid a Ministry of Commerce audit, and food and beverages worth an estimated K600 million were confiscated. The company s managing director is also on trial for allegedly importing the items, including a significant quantity of wine, without a licence and illicitly using licences from hotels to import alcohol on Quarto s behalf. The trial opened on November 22 and the next hearing will take place on December 4. The company s lawyer, U Aung Than Soe, told The Myanmar Times on November 29 that Quarto s managing director will contest the allegations by arguing that the products that the company imported had been approved by customs without any declaration for a recent food and beverage exhibition, while others were imported legally using a hotel licence. He said Quarto should have applied for an Open General Licence, or OGL, for the items, which allows companies to import items for display in an exhibition. They didn t know they had to apply for an OGL for an exhibition. MORE ON NEWS 3 PAGE 3 PHOTO: BOOTHEE Customs officials in Bago Region confiscated illegally imported items valued at more than K5 billion in the first six months of the financial year, after setting up a checkpoint at Nyaung Khar Shae in Waw township on the highway between Yangon and the border town of Myawaddy. NEWS 12 Govt silent as last Comrade passes No serving government officials passed on their condolences to the family of Bo Ye Htut, the last of Myanmar s 30 Comrades who passed away on November 27. BUSINESS 22 Just 30 companies bid in O&G tender Fewer than half of the 61 prequalified companies have submitted bids in an offshore energy tender, the Ministry of Energy said last week. YCDC REJECTS PORT COMPLEX PROPERTY 26 THE PULSE 40 After 100 years, photos come home An exhibition pairs photos of Myanmar taken 100 years ago with recent pictures highlighting both similarities and differences between the two eras.
2 2 THE MYANMAR TIMES DECEMBER 2-8, 2013 Page 2 online editor Kayleigh Long THE INSIDER: The local lowdown & best of the web Eleven site hacked, for sale The English-language version of the Eleven Myanmar website went offline briefly last week, with all signs pointing to the news group not having renewed its domain hosting package. Those trying to visit their page were redirected to the GoDaddy.com hosting site that declared the domain name up for grabs and asked do you want to buy this page? The answer to that question was, of course, yes. Page 2 tried to purchase the domain, but to no avail: it had been reserved for renewal by its rightful owners. A member of staff at Eleven attributed the hiccough to the site having been hacked. Myanmar inches ahead Myanmar s Ministry of Commerce has announced it is preparing to do away with the imperial standard and adopt the metric or, some would say, more logical unit as the nation s official system of measurement, in order to streamline exporting processes and international trade. Indeed, it is truly a mark When Myanmar was Burma... of the momentous economic shift the country is experiencing at present. The decision will leave just two countries in the world still operating on imperial: the United States and Liberia. Unruly tourists wreak havoc in Bagan Tourism police in Bagan have voiced concerns that tourists are breaking the rules, sleeping and climbing in the ancient pagoda archaeological zone. While the hotels industry is struggling to meet the demands of a bumper tourist season, it s unlikely room shortages are so dire that people are driven to sleep in the ruins for any reason other than ungodly bus arrival times and a desire to catch the sunrise before checkin. Calls for greater enforcement might not be unfounded, however, with some locals worried about tourists climbing the zone s less-sound structures a gripe borne of concern for heritage value, as well as (presumably) a growing weariness of patching up adventurous Germans. Monitoring the archaeological zone is no small task, and there is always the added worry of visitors taking items away from the site. A Reddit.com user recently posted a picture of a small tablet with the Buddha carved into it, saying they found it in Bagan, took it home and wanted to get a translation on its possibly ancient inscription. Archival material provided by Pansodan Gallery Shave : a street art series that has sprung up around downtown Yangon. Photo: Greg Holland I was an opposition leader myself for four years; I know that that position has some exhilarations and some frustrations Advertisement for now-discontinued Flying Golden Tiger cheroots. Year unknown. Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott likens his time at the helm of the Liberal Opposition to Aung San Suu Kyi s own struggles, during her visit to the country last week. Moe Set Wine for NOW! magazine. Photo: Htet Aung Kyaw (Studio HAK) Style Statement
3 News 3 CONTINUED FROM NEWS 1 Quarto resumes sales as imports trial begins IN PICTURES After wowing the crowd with her singing skills, La Min Nge (pictured) was awarded the title of Miss Rainbow Ribbon by a panel of judges in Mandalay on November 23. The beauty pageant, which was open only to members of the transgender community, attracted 42 entries. Photo and cap: Khin Su Wai Mobile team rakes in revenue A MOBILE customs team seized more than K5 billion of illegal goods at a Bago Region checkpoint on the Yangon-Myawaddy route in the first half of this financial year, officials said. The haul from the Nyaung Khar Shae checkpoint in Waw township came between April 1 and September 30. Located 16 kilometres (10 miles) from Waw, the checkpoint is the main site for mobile teams to intercept goods destined for Yangon that were illegally imported from Thailand at Myawaddy. By taking action against illegal trade, the country s trade volume dropped last month but it rebounded again this month, said U Thein Tun Oo, deputy director of the Bago Region mobile team. We will keep taking action against illegal trade to increase legal trade volume this financial year. Most of the seized items are consumer goods, electronic devices, agricultural materials and medicines that cannot be legally imported, are substandard or lack proper documentation to show import duties have been paid, said U Yin Htwe, head of a mobile team at Nyaung Khar Shae. In the first quarter of the financial year, the team uncovered an average of 84 cases a month, but that fell to 62 cases in the second quarters. Nyan Lynn Aung, translation by Zar Zar Soe AYE THIDAR KYAW THOMAS KEAN But they applied for FDA approval on the same day the mobile team confiscated their products, he said. He said Quarto had never been in legal difficulties before and was in the top 100 taxpayers in Myanmar in recent financial years. He said it was also unclear why the ministry was not consistent in its approach to items that have allegedly been illegally imported through border areas and shipping. I don t understand why the mobile team has an education period under which they do not take action but for overseas trade they don t offer an education period. He also questioned where the information came from that prompted the raid on Quarto s Hlaing township warehouses, from which 30,000 bottles of wine and 2400 cans of beer were confiscated. The [informant] might be a competitor of Quarto. But maybe it s just bad luck; Quarto is not the biggest company [in the sector] and others are still operating. An official from the Ministry of Commerce s Illegal Trade Prevention and Supervision Control Committee said the background or motivation of informants is not taken into account. We officially announced in the paper that anybody can give us information so we don t consider whether they are competitors, he said. The official said the ministry had introduced a green channel to speed up the importation process for traders, who had complained that inspecting all items took too long. But just because something has been brought through the green channel by a trader it does not mean it has been legally imported, he said. Alcohol import reforms planned As The Myanmar Times has previously reported, the temporary closure of Quarto a major distributor of food and beverages to hotels and restaurants the seizure of its stock and the arrest of its managing director have sent shockwaves through the sector. The raid appeared to focus mostly on the company s wine products and following the raid some wine distributors temporarily closed following the Quarto raid, while others left imported goods uncollected at Yangon port. It also prompted calls for an overhaul of alcohol import rules, which currently allow only hotels and duty-free shops to import alcohol, including beer, wine and spirits. Following the raid, the Ministry of Commerce announced it was considering liberalising alcohol imports. The official said ministry representatives met hoteliers and alcohol distributors last week in an effort to gather feedback from the sector. Over the coming months the ministry plans to relax rules on wine imports and then proceed to liquor and finally beer, he said. We will likely issue import permits in December, although we have not made any firm decisions yet and can t say exactly when the policy will be implemented. He said the ministry broadly plans to liberalise trade rules in a bid to combat illegal trade, which costs the government millions of dollars a year in lost revenue. Trade clarity needed The general manager of one hotel in Yangon said ministry officials met representatives from foreign investment hotels on November 21 to discuss import rules. They said they were clamping down on illegal trading, he said. The reason for the meeting was not [the audit of] Quarto, it was to explain the import rules... We were told to follow the rules but it s still not clear what the rules are. Importing wine on a hotel licence was a common practice for everyone, so we re confused about why some have been raided and others not. I think that s the main concern. The other thing is that these products are not coming in on the back of an elephant. They re being shipped in, in containers, and going through customs. So how are they getting in? Jeremy Rathjen, the vice president of consulting firm Thura Swiss, agreed that the Quarto incident highlighted the lack of clarity over trade rules. The real issue is that there is so much ambiguity in the trading sector people don t know what is legal or not and that is a problem. If that were clarified, if the government were to come out and say this is illegal but very clearly and evenly apply that, I think people would be satisfied, he said. The Heineken connection Speculation is widespread in the industry that the company s problems stem from an anticipated foray into beer distribution, although there is little concrete evidence to support this. Quarto is believed to have been in negotiations with Asia Pacific Breweries to distribute Heineken until the international firm s factory, which is due for completion at the end of 2014, is up and running. The factory is being built by APB Alliance Brewery, a joint venture between APB and Alliance Brewery Company. Quarto refused to comment on the Heineken connection, although the Heineken logo was prominently displayed on its booth at the MyanFood 13 exhibition, which was held in Yangon in early November. A Singapore-based spokesperson for APB told The Myanmar Times last week that it had worked with Quarto in recent months to hold an Oktoberfest event but the cooperation had not yet gone any further. So far we ve really only had a relationship in terms of that one event. We haven t got an arrangement other than that, the spokesperson said. We re very much in the early stages in our relationship We haven t got anything formal in place and in the early stages of coming into the market. It would not be APB s first foray into Myanmar. In 1995 it established Myanmar Brewery Limited with armyowned Union of Myanmar Economic Holdings Limited (UMEHL). Food shortage continues Despite the anticipated reopening of Quarto this week, the shortage of high-end imported food products is likely to continue. A price list sent to customers on November 25 contained only 46 items, including blackcurrant jam from Austria and sushi rice from Japan. A spokesperson for the company declined to comment except to say it will be able to distribute again this coming Monday [December 2] latest. There has been a shortage of products and we even had to send people abroad to buy some things, said Thomas Henseler, general manager of the Governor s Residence. It s not a problem for wine because we can store it for a long time. But for 300 grams of caviar, 5 kilograms of Wagyu beef, a special spice, French raw milk and cheese, and so on this is what is hurting us right now.
4 4 News THE MYANMAR TIMES DECEMBER 2-8, 2013 Australia, Singapore accused of monitoring communications line Myanmar s only high-speed undersea fibre optic line was being monitored by Singapore, reports reveal THOMAS KEAN FOR years, we assumed Big Brother was watching listening to phone calls, reading s. It turns out, he was. Only Big Brother was not Military Intelligence, or officials in the Ministry of Communications or Home Affairs. It was apparently Singapore and Australia, which were sharing intelligence with members of what is known as the Five Eyes, a partnership that includes Australia as well as the United States, United Kingdom, Canada and New Zealand. A top secret US National Security Agency map, taken from a 2012 PowerPoint slide leaked by NSA contractor Edward Snowden, shows that Singapore has assisted Five Eyes members in monitoring communications in the region. Media reports say this cooperating extends to tapping the SEA- ME-WE-3 undersea cable, which stretches from Europe to Australia and Japan. The map published last week in the Dutch newspaper NRC Handelsblad shows that Singapore is one of 20 locations across the globe where Five Eyes partners monitor communications on high-speed fibre optic cables, sometimes through third parties such as Singapore or South Korea. Why does this matter for Myanmar? As The Myanmar Times outlines in its Technology section this week (see page 29 for more), almost all of Myanmar s internet traffic is funnelled through this one cable, leaving the country particularly vulnerable to such monitoring. Myanmar was not allowed to expand its telecoms capacity by joining the SEA-ME-WE-4 consortium because it still owed money over SEA-ME-WE-3; however, according to the map, the newer cable was also being monitored as of Myanmar s connection leaves the main SEA-ME-WE-3 cable near Singapore and runs up through the Andaman Sea to the Ayeyarwady delta, making landfall near Pyapon. Australian newspaper The Age has previously reported that Australia s electronic espionage agency, the Defence Signals Directorate (DSD), is partnering with Singaporean intelligence to tap the SEA- ME-WE-3 cable. Australian intelligence sources told the newspaper that the Security and Intelligence Division of Singapore s Ministry of Defence co-operates with DSD in accessing and sharing communications carried by the SEA-ME-WE-3 cable. It said access to communications in the cable is facilitated by Singapore s government-owned operator SingTel, which is part of a consortium that commissioned the development of the 39,000-kilometre (about 24,233 miles) cable in SingTel declined to comment last week, while the Singaporean embassy in Yangon did not respond to requests for comment. The Myanmar Times contacted DSD, which is now known as Australian Signals Directorate, to confirm the report but a spokesperson said it was the established practice of successive Australian governments not to comment on intelligence matters. The Myanmar government is also yet to comment publicly on the report, while officials from state-run telecoms firm Myanma Posts and Telecommunications said they were unaware of the allegations. But the revelations of possible spying on fibre optic traffic have already sparked a diplomatic row between Singapore and Malaysia, with Malaysia s foreign ministry summoning the Singaporean ambassador, Ong Keng Yong, on November 26. Malaysia is extremely concerned about the report on Singapore, Foreign Minister Anifah Aman was quoted as saying by AFP. If those allegations are eventually proven, it is certainly a serious matter that the government of Malaysia strongly rejects and abhors. Pedestrians pass Gandhi Hall on the corner of Merchant and Bo Aung Kyaw roads in downtown Yangon. Photo: Ko Taik Gandhi Hall saved from trustees condo plans NOE NOE AUNG THE broken windows, fading paint and locked doors are evidence enough that the building is abandoned and unloved. But passersby on the corners of Bo Aung Kyaw and Merchant streets can easily see that, while old, the structure known as Gandhi Hall was built to last and last it has. Like many of Yangon s colonial-era buildings, it has a storied history but is also threatened by the wrecking ball. In the 1910s, it was the office of The Rangoon Times, one of the most influential newspapers in British Burma. In 1951, it was purchased by Prime Minister U Nu and the Indian ambassador to Myanmar, MA Rauf. They named it the Mahatma Gandhi Memorial Trust and handed it to a board of trustees to manage. But the same board is now pushing to demolish the existing structure and replace it with a modern 12-storey apartment building. The buildings around the hall are already modern buildings. We also want to transform [Gandhi Hall] into a modern high-rise building, U Thein Tun, one of the nine trustees, told The Myanmar Times on November 27. That building is not connected with Mahatma Gandhi at all so we do not consider it a memorial building It is just a hall, he said. This is our own building and we should have a right to do what we want. The trustees want to demolish that building just for their own interest. U Nay Win YCDC Department of Engineering Despite their eagerness, so far the trustees have been blocked in their bid by Yangon City Development Committee and the Yangon Region government, on the recommendation of the Yangon Heritage Trust, a non-profit organisation that works to preserve and protect the city s rich urban heritage. The Indian embassy in Yangon has also opposed the demolition, and the ambassador has personally asked heritage trust chairman U Thant Myint-U to help ensure the building is restored and put to use. For decades the building was used for religious, social, intellectual and political gatherings. It was where the National League for Democracy drafted the Gandhi Hall Declaration, issued on July 29, 1990, which called for a rapid transfer of power after that year s elections. In recent years, however, the building has been closed to outsiders. U Nay Win, a spokesperson from YCDC s Department of Engineering (Building), confirmed the committee had blocked the application to demolish the building at the request of the Yangon Region s chief minister, U Myint Swe. [The trustees] applied for permission to demolish the building three or four times. And we reported it to the regional chief minister and he rejected it, U Nay Win said. It is a historical building. The authorities want to conserve it and it is also the wish of officials from the Indian embassy. He said that while the exterior of the building was neglected and weather-beaten, it is structurally sound and still in good condition on the inside. The frame, columns and walls are still in good condition and it looks grand. It certainly can t be listed as a dangerous building even though it is more than 100 years old. It would be a great historical building if it was renovated, U Nay Win said. The trustees want to demolish that building just for their own interest. But U Thein Tun said trustees would continue their fight to demolish the building they have been entrusted to maintain by petitioning Nay Pyi Taw to overturn YCDC s decision. We will keep trying as much as we can.
6 6 News THE MYANMAR TIMES DECEMBER 2-8, 2013 Textbooks to get kids to think for themselves COLOURFUL, interesting and designed to make students think that s what the new generation of school textbooks is going to look like. Starting in the academic year, schoolchildren from primary levels upwards will have access to new, higher-quality materials as part of the education department s child-centred approach to teaching. Daw Khin Thin Phyu, assistant director for content in the ministry s Department of Educational Planning and Training, said the exercises will encourage children to think for themselves. Exercises will become more attractive and interesting for students, she said. The books will be all the same size, and will use high-quality paper. The exercises in primary textbooks will be full-colour and attractive, and will encourage children to think for themselves instead of just learning the text. The shift from rote learning to questioning and thinking is part of the ministry s child-centred approach, she said. This change will be good for students. They can study more easily and will be able to think for themselves, agreed Daw Tin Yee Mya, head of a North Dagon high school. The improved paper quality will make the books last longer, she said. Ma Moe Wah, the mother of a grade five student, also welcomed the new books. The improved textbooks will be more interesting for the children, and will last longer, she said. The change has been planned since December 2012, Daw Khin Thin Phyu said. Minister [for the President s Office] U Tin Naing Thein decided to add exercises to improve students thinking skills. Ei Thae Thae Naing UNFC, Daw Suu agree on federal army plan EI EI TOE LWIN DAW Aung San Suu Kyi and members of the United Nationalities Federal Council have reached an agreement to work together to bring about the establishment of a federal system and federal union army, they told reporters last week. While ethnic groups have long called for a federal state, the federal army proposal has only gained prominence in recent weeks after it became the focus of peace talks in Myitkyina in Kachin State in early December. The Tatmadaw has rejected the proposal as a dangerous dream. [The UNFC] told me they want to be establish a federal union army that meets the criteria of a federal union state. There must be a federal army if there is going to be a federal state, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi told reporters at her Yangon home on November 25. The press conference was held after the National League for Democracy leader met three members of the UNFC, a Chiang Mai-based umbrella organisation for around a dozen armed ethnic groups, to discuss amendments to the 2008 constitution and the federal union army. The visit, at the invitation of the Myanmar Peace Center, was the first by a UNFC delegation and was aimed at building confidence in the peace process and enabling the group to meet other stakeholders. It was facilitated by Japanese non-government organisation the Nippon Foundation. Daw Aung San Suu Kyi said that while the NLD and ethnic groups did Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and members of the United Nationalities Federal Council pose for a photo at her residence in Yangon on November 25. Photo: AFP not always have the same policy on whether the constitution should be amended or rewritten there is no disagreement between them. All share the idea that we need a democratic federal system. We all There must be a federal army if there is going to be a federal state. Daw Aung San Suu Kyi National League for Democracy leader agree that it s impossible for a federal system to emerge from the [current version of the] 2008 constitution, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi said, before declaring that she must fulfill the needs of ethnic minorities. Senior officials from the UNFC said they agreed with Daw Aung San Suu Kyi s comments and called on her to take part in peace talks as an observer. They also agreed on the need for constitutional change, warning that genuine peace would not be possible with the current constitution. However, the UNFC officials reaffirmed the group s belief that the 2008 constitution should be scrapped and replaced with a constitution that recognises Myanmar as a federal union state. We exchanged our points of view on the current constitution. We believe that we can reach our goals more quickly with a new constitution, said general secretary U Naing Han Thar, who led the UNFC delegation. The UNFC members visited Yangon from November 24 to 26 at the invitation of U Aung Min, head of the government peace negotiation team. During their visit they met U Aung Min, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and members of the United Nationalities Alliance (UNA), a coalition of ethnic minority parties, for talks on the peace process. We are satisfied with the trip, U Naing Han Thar told reporters before departing for Chiang Mai on November 26. The government allowed us to meet the people we wanted. Youth leaders to lobby for new law AUNG KYAW MIN YOUTH leaders say they plan to work with non-government groups and MPs to draft a Youth Law, following the holding of the two-day Yangon Youth Forum last week. The November forum also resulted in the decision to conduct a pilot project to help solve the difficulties and challenges young people face, one of the forum organisers, Daw Cho Mar Win, said following the event. She said more information on the project and Youth Law would be released in coming weeks but praised the level of participation at the forum. This year s forum was different from the earlier event we did, as participants mostly focused on drawing up the pilot project, she said. Participants presentations and commitment were very strong. Now we will negotiate and connect with other young people to ensure the discussions become reality. We also intend to cooperate with other organisations to help lobby for a Youth Law that covers the rights and duties of young people, as suggested by [Pyithu Hluttaw representative] Daw Khin Wine Kyi. Participants also voted on who would represent the Yangon forum at the Myanmar Youth Forum in Daw Cho Mar Win said the government was encouraging youth activists to organise events like the Yangon Youth Forum. This kind of youth forum is already being conducted in other countries but we are making efforts for young people to become more active here, she said. The government, other organisations and experts are encouraging us to hold the forum. We have had no problems and the guests who attended were very encouraging. Held at Aungmyaebontar Shan Monastery near 9 Mile in Mayangone township, the event was sponsored by telecoms firm Ooredoo. Similar youth forums will be held in other states and regions in the coming weeks, and have already been held in Chin and Kayah states. The forum was divided into eight sections, focusing on issues including education, media and information technology, employment, the environment, culture and arts, and gender equality and human rights.
7 Scouts leave for ASEAN jamboree EI THAE THAE NAING TWENTY Scouts and two Scout leaders left for Thailand last week to attend the fourth ASEAN Scout Jamboree. The 15 male and five female Scouts who left on November 27 were selected following a national jamboree in Nay Pyi Taw in April that was attended by more than 480 Scouts. Running from November 27 to December 4, the ASEAN Scout Jamboree in Chonburi is bringing together more than 5000 Scouts from across the region. It is the second time we ve taken part in this Scout jamboree, said U Tin Nyo, president of the Myanmar Scout Interim Committee. Normally we have to pay a registration fee but because Scouting is still developing here they invited us to attend without having to pay a registration fee. At the Nay Pyi Taw jamboree we tested the Scouts and from this we chose these 20 to attend the ASEAN event. In Thailand the Scouts will have to share their knowledge, culture and experiences. Before departing, the Scouts attended a training program at Basis Education High School 1 Lanmadaw. The Scouts and leaders told The Myanmar Times they were proud to represent their country in Thailand. News 7 Meiktila, Letpadaung highlight need for police reform, says EU AYE NYEIN WIN A 10 million euro (US$13.5 million) European Union project to improve standards in the Myanmar Police Force will focus on guiding legal reform, ensuring police have the training to manage conflict situations, and building trust with the community, an EU official says. The 18-month project, which got underway in November, will see a community policing pilot project implemented in Mingalar Taung Nyunt township, while officers will receive training in crowd management and human rights issues, EU ambassador to Myanmar Roland Kobia said. Recent incidents in Letpadaung Taung and Meiktila underline the need for the police to change the way they operate, Mr Kobia said at a press conference on November 29. With this project the EU wants to contribute to improve the human rights performance of the Myanmar Police Force and initiate the development of a community-based police service that is trustworthy and EU ambassador to Myanmar Roland Kobia speaks to media with General Thura Bo Ni of the Myanmar Police Force on November 29. Photo: AFP at the service of the people of Myanmar, he said. Under the project, support will be provided for introducing a police vision and creating a legal framework based in international standards, with full respect for fundamental human rights. It will also encourage increased police accountability to parliament, civil society and the media. General Thura Bo Ni from the police force said the program to upgrade the Myanmar Police Force to international standards was agreed upon during President U Thein Sein s visit to Europe earlier this year. After U Thein Sein became president, the whole country s security became the responsibility of the police force, Gen Thura Bo Ni said. But we can t reform within a short time. It is not easy. In the past month, with the help of the EU, we have received training in systematic crowd management. This will directly benefit our work during the upcoming Southeast Asian Games. He said the EU program would only touch on the police force s training needs, with just 4 percent of its approximately 100,000 officers expected to receive training. To date about 400 officers have received training. However, Gen Thura Bo Ni described winning the trust of the public as the force s greatest challenge. Most Myanmar people do not believe in the police force. How can we get the people s trust? The answer is we should be a police force that all people feel they can cooperate with, he said. A system in which the police and public cooperate and work together has been very successful in other countries We aim to become a police force that the people believe in. Under the community policing pilot project, the EU will assist the police force and local authorities to develop multi-partnership action plans aimed at meaningful cooperation between police, the public and civil society organisations in Mingalar Taung Nyunt. I am really happy to be going to this kind of event as a Scout. Being a Scout reminds me to always be prepared and to help others. Mg Thuta Phone Aung Grade eight student I really appreciate being chosen, said Daw Khin Mya Khet, the head of BEHS 2 South Taunggyi, who has been a Scout since 201. We prepared and trained our Scouts so they have the required knowledge, such as how to camp. We also helped them with other needs, such as language skills, she said. Mg Thuta Phone Aung, a grade eight student from Mandalay, said, I am really happy to go to this kind of event as a Scout. Being a Scout reminds me always to be prepared and to help others. The Scout group received assistance from CityMart, which sponsored the airfares, and 7-Day News, which provided spending money. Scouts should be responsible for themselves but having these donors makes it easier for them to go on the trip, U Tin Nyo said. Banned by General Ne Win s government in the 1960s, Scouting only returned to Myanmar in 2012 when the government introduced a limited program in some schools. It has since decided to roll out the program nationally and is drafting a law to oversee the program in cooperation with international Scout bodies. This jamboree is a rare chance that we did not have for the past 50 years, U Tin Nyo said. From this event, Scouts will gain experience that will enable them to contribute more. They will be leaders in the future when we expand our Scouting activities.
8 8 News THE MYANMAR TIMES DECEMBER 2-8, 2013 Managing Director and Editor-in-Chief (MTE) Ross Dunkley Chief Operating Officer Wendy Madrigal General Counsel and Deputy Editor-in-Chief Zaw Myint Editor-in-Chief (MTM) Dr Tin Tun Oo Views EDITORIAL Editor MTE Thomas Kean Editor MTM Sann Oo Chief of Staff Zaw Win Than Editor Special Publications Myo Lwin Mandalay Bureau Chief Jeremy Mullins Business Editor MTE Philip Heijmans World Editor MTE Bridget Di Certo The Pulse Editor MTE Manny Maung Sport Editor MTE Tim McLaughlin Online Editor MTE Kayleigh Long Chief Sub Editor MTM Aye Sapay Phyu Business Editor MTM Tin Moe Aung Property Editor MTM Htar Htar Khin Timeout Editor MTM Moh Moh Thaw Senior Editor MTM Thet Hlaing News Editor (Mandalay) Khin Su Wai Head of Translation Dept Ko Ko Head of Photographics Kaung Htet Photographers Boothee, Aung Htay Hlaing, Thiri PRODUCTION Art Directors Tin Zaw Htway, Ko Pxyo MCM PRINTING Head of Department Htay Maung Factory Administrator Aung Kyaw Oo (3) Factory Foreman Tin Win ADVERTISING Deputy National Sales Directors Chan Tha Oo, Nay Myo Oo, Nandar Khine, Nyi Nyi Tun Classifieds Manager Khin Mon Mon Yi ADMIN, FINANCE & IT Finance Manager Mon Mon Tha Saing HR Khine Su Yin, Han Oo Khin Publisher Dr Tin Tun Oo, Permit No: Information Technology Manager Kyaw Zay Yar Lin DISTRIBUTION & CIRCULATION Circulation & Distribution Director Jesse Gage ADVERTISING & SUBSCRIPTION ENQUIRIES Telephone: (01) , Facsimile: (01) The Myanmar Times is owned by Myanmar Consolidated Media Ltd and printed by MCM Commercial Printing with approval from MCM Ltd and by Shwe Zin Press (0368) with approval from MCM Ltd. 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Photo: Aung Htay Hlaing Cars instead of footpaths: How Yangon is losing its charm The Yangon City Development Committee s misguided efforts to deal with worsening traffic congestion threatens to destroy the unique character of the city s downtown area and encourage the use of cars MAUNG RUPA HAVE you noticed that Yangon s footpaths have been disappearing recently? Has the spot you used to sit down for tea in the morning or where you set up to sell newspapers for the day been replaced by the back end of a car? You are not alone. A Yangon City Development Committee (YCDC) program to replace large sections of footpath with car parking spaces began last year, and the results have been seen within six months. The aim is to reduce traffic congestion by making more room for roadside parking. No doubt YCDC is acting with good intentions. There is a huge traffic problem in Yangon and something must be done. However, the experience of cities all over the world, from Los Angeles to Beijing, has shown that making more room for cars does nothing to reduce traffic congestion. As a result of this program, we are losing one of the greatest heritage, economic and liveability assets Yangon has its welcoming and generous footpath network for no gain at all. If you have been to Bangkok, Hong Kong or Kuala Lumpur, you will know that what Yangon has in its wide and generous footpaths is a rare blessing. Not having to fight your way through packed crowds from one end of the city to the other, and the way that vendors, teashops and restaurants have plenty of room to ply their trade while still allowing room for passersby, is worth protecting. I remember the first time I came across the new replacement footpaths. People were funnelled up off the ground onto raised platforms some as high as 500 millimetres, or about 20 inches (other modern cities limit curb heights to roughly 150mm for safety reasons). As I approached Bo Aung Kyaw Street, an elderly woman in front of me had to turn around and go back down the street because she couldn t get down from the raised path to cross the intersection. The major public safety implications of this program are clear along Anawrahta Road between Sule Pagoda Road and Shwe Bontha Street. Here the footpaths have been reduced to 1 metre (3.3 feet) in width, and the foot traffic has become so clogged that people are forced to venture onto the dangerous road. Some raised sections of the footpath are even higher than the plinth of roadside houses. Clear, easily navigated and generous footpaths are the lifeblood of a city like Yangon, whose economy relies on customers being able to access its shops and vendors. If people cannot get around in a relaxed, safe and accessible way, then business will suffer. Yangon stands to make billions of dollars from tourism based on its unique heritage assets. The walkable nature and heritage character of Yangon s tree-lined streets are critical for the city s visitor-friendly reputation. Most importantly, local residents should be able to walk around their neighbourhood in a stress-free way. They should be able to go to the market or shops without needing to fight through constricted footpaths or being forced to risk their safety by walking along the road. One of Yangon s great advantages Yangon stands to make billions of dollars from tourism based on its unique heritage assets. The walkable nature and heritage character of Yangon s tree-lined streets are critical for its visitor-friendly reputation. is that it can examine the mistakes other cities have made before it s too late. There are better ways to deal with traffic congestion. London has turned to a congestion tax, while Beijing has an alternating odd-even number plate restriction for its downtown. Other cities have reversible lanes that switch directions depending on the time of day. Improving traffic light signal integration and construction of YCDC-operated car parks in key areas will help enormously. The real answer to traffic congestion lies not with cars but with alternative modes of transport. Beijing, Singapore and Kuala Lumpur have all invested heavily in mass transit systems in the past 10 years. Cities like Melbourne, Copenhagen and Guangzhou have turned to the humble bicycle in promoting healthy, cheap and quick transport. Yangon, being a flat city, is perfect for cycling. Melbourne, Toronto, Berlin and Hong Kong rely heavily on good tram networks, while Auckland, Sydney and Buenos Aires have partially rebuilt networks they tore up in the mid-20 th century. Yangon should look at rebuilding a modern tram system to complement the existing bus network. During the past 50 years, cities across the world have realised the major health congestion and liveability issues resulting from their embrace of the car. Many are moving back to modes of transport once seen as outdated, such as cycling, walking and riding trams. Yangon should avoid following the mistakes of countless other cities that have sacrificed their unique character, economy and liveability at the altar of the car. YCDC must reconsider its footpathreducing program, which is ruining the liveability and heritage character of Yangon while at the same time putting residents safety and the city s vibrant retail sector at risk. With a well-considered and integrated transport plan, Yangon can reduce traffic congestion without destroying what makes it unique and profitable. Maung Rupa is a heritage conservation specialist.
9 News 9 Views After honour, focus returns to home front THE Australian National University s Llewellyn Hall is a vast auditorium best suited to big events. Capable of holding more than 1000 people, on November 29 it was full for the ceremony that awarded an honorary doctorate to Daw Aung San Suu Kyi. As the National League for Democracy leader gazed out over the throng of dignitaries, academic staff and excited students keen to see Myanmar s democracy icon in person, I wondered exactly what she made of all the fuss. Her years of house arrest have clearly marked Daw Aung San Suu Kyi from the rest of us. The torments and sacrifices of those years are hidden behind the gracious smile but there is a clear awareness that she must seize opportunities as they arise. She doesn t have time to lose. Among those gathered at the ANU to hear her short speech of gratitude and determination, she would have seen some unsettled faces. The agony of Myanmar s recent history was written in the grimaces and grins of those who have struggled, quietly and in the shadows, for a time when Myanmar is Dear editor, NICHOLAS FARRELLY The National League for Democracy is increasingly becoming an embarrassment to Myanmar. The party is pulling out all stops to change the 2008 constitution but ask them about granting citizenship to oppressed minorities in Rakhine State and they say (as reported in last week s edition of The Myanmar Times) that the Rohingya do not exist under Myanmar s laws. In other words, the NLD is LETTER at peace with itself and can build its own democracy. Hanging over her visit to Australia are concerns, usually voiced quietly and respectfully, that highlight the prevailing challenges to Daw Aung San Suu Kyi s political ambition. She came to the great game of politics later in life, emboldened naturally by destiny and her family s legacy, to take on a military government that was, until recently, fiercely committed to staying in charge. As Myanmar has embraced more liberal prospects, Aung San Suu Kyi is faced with dilemmas about how to represent the diverse peoples who see, in her, their best hopes for change. The weight of responsibility would have long ago toppled a lesser figure, and yet it is unclear whether, as she spoke in Canberra of the spirit needed to prevail in political struggles, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi has fully digested the diversities and disparities of the home front. In Canberra the cleavages were kept in the background. Still, not everyone feels that Daw Aung San Suu Kyi necessarily merits the high esteem in which she is held. They gently query the strength of her commitment to human rights and democratic practice. They also ask hard questions about her attitudes toward the Rohingya, other Muslims and ethnic minorities such as the Kachin. willing to fight tooth and nail to change the law when doing so would be to their own advantage (ie, allowing their leader to run for president), but when it comes to changing the law to help others, well, too bad for them they re on their own. This callous, self-centred approach does not bode well for the future of Myanmar if the NLD does manage to win big in the 2015 elections. Best regards, Ko Moe Cho Daw Aung San Suu Kyi speaks at Australian National University s Llewellyn Hall on November 29 after receiving an honorary doctorate. Photo: ANU/Stuart Hay Honorary degree ceremonies are obviously not the place for sparring on these issues. Instead, members of the eclectic Myanmar diaspora in Australia made their way to the ceremony and patiently waited for their opportunity to see Mother Suu in action. Those I spoke to expressed pride in her achievements and voiced awareness that the road to greater freedom and prosperity will not be smooth. Among those who gathered for the ceremony were some who suffered greatly at the hands of the former military government: People who grew up in refugee camps or spent their best years locked in jail. To acknowledge those experiences, the citation read by the chancellor of the university, former Australian Foreign Minister Gareth Evans, endorsed the many other Burmese who have fought for peace and democracy in their country. [Daw Aung San Suu Kyi s] personal struggle for life and dignity is mirrored in the experiences of countless others. He also made direct reference to the country s best and brightest [who were] crushed by the government crackdown of In her remarks, delivered off-thecuff to an enraptured auditorium, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi acknowledged the significance of those who have offered themselves to the cause of political and social change. She cautioned that Myanmar continues to face serious challenges and that there are too many who believe that we are almost at the end of the road. This is not so. We are just at the beginning. Calling Australia a unique combination of East and West and an example of genuine unity through diversity, she encouraged the audience to recognise the success of Australian society and to imagine how its lessons can be applied to Myanmar s development. With this high honour from ANU, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi once again receives the acclaim of friends and strangers alike. On her return to Myanmar she will, however, face the challenge of advocating for constitutional change, to say nothing of the long-term issue of supporting greater ethnic and religious harmony. For all of the international goodwill that her travels generate, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi s real struggles are at home: within her own party, in the Pyidaungsu Hluttaw and then, one day, at the ballot box. From the lectern in Canberra she spoke of peace and unity and the need for a genuine union of many peoples. But across Myanmar people need more than rhetoric and they are still looking to Daw Aung San Suu Kyi to deliver. They seek inspiration from her example and take pride in her honours but will ultimately judge her leadership on the concrete improvements to their lives. Nicholas Farrelly is a research fellow at the Australian National University, Canberra. He played a minor role in helping organise Aung San Suu Kyi s visit to the campus.
10 10 News THE MYANMAR TIMES DECEMBER 2-8, 2013 Two refusing Inle hotel compensation More than six months after land in Inle s new hotel zone was sold for almost US$100,000 an acre, two of the 86 Intha whose lands were taken for the project are still refusing to accept the government s improved compensation offer WA LONE TWO landowners who say the Shan State government grabbed their land for the development of luxury hotels are holding out for more compensation. They say others whose land was taken have been pressured into accepting compensation far below the K50 million an acre that the land fetched in a recent auction with hotel developers. In November last year, the Shan State government appropriated 622 acres of land owned by 86 ethnic Intha residents on the eastern shore of Inle Lake in Nyaungshwe township for the hotel zone. I asked for compensation of K60 million per acre... but the state government said they can t pay. U Aung Kyaw Myo Farmer who lost land to the Inle Lake hotel zone Sixty-eight land owners accepted the initial compensation, which covered crops only, while 16 more accepted increased compensation, for both land and crops, that was offered after an investigation by a parliamentary commission examining land disputes. But two are still resisting. U Aung Kyaw Myo, a resident of Ingyingone village, said compensation offered by the state government for the acres of his land that it took is too small. I registered those lands years ago and I paid tax every year, he said. I asked for compensation of K60 million per acre of farmland and K40 million per acre of orchard, but the state government said they can t pay [that much], he said. The land was sold in April to developers, who paid from K85-95 million per acre, Shan State Minister for Finance U Khun Thein Maung said. Interested parties were required to submit a K50 million deposit and a lucky draw was used to select the winners, who could buy land at the set price. He said infrastructure in the zone will be completed by April U Tin Maung Toe, the head of the National League for Democracy in Taunggyi, described the compensation offered as unfair given how much profit the government had made reselling the land to hotel developers. U Tin Maung Toe said the Shan State police chief Police Colonel Win Tun told residents in August that the state government could not pay the amount raised at auction to the original landowners because it has to fund the development of the zone, including electricity supply and road infrastructure. The NLD member said some farmers didn t want to accept the compensation but did so because of pressure. The government offered initial compensation to landowners based on income from three years of crops. Compensation ranges from K220,000 an acre for sugarcane to K2 million an acre for tomato fields, while K50,000 was paid for each mango tree. Inle residents clear hyacinth in front of the under-construction hotel zone on the eastern shore of Inle Lake in southern Shan State last month. Photo: Wa Lone U Win Myint, the Shan State minister for Intha affairs, said additional payments had been made following inspections by a parliamentary investigation commission into land disputes in July and October. The additional compensation for the land was negotiated with 16 displaced owners individually and the details of the compensation were not publicly released. In August, some landowners who refused compensation clashed with police, resulting in charges against 13 residents. They were not punished but had to sign a bond to not reoffend. The hotel zone was created by the Shan State government at the suggestion of President U Thein Sein in early The aim was to move development away from the lake and reduce the tourism industry s environmental and social impact, as there are already dozens of hotels on the lake and its shores. More than 90 hotels are to be built in the new hotel zone at the popular tourist destination, said U Win Myint, adding that the state government issued tenders for installation of electricity and construction of roads in the zone. Ministry of Energy simplifies rules for CNG conversion AYE NYEIN WIN SIMPLIFIED procedures for converting vehicles to natural gas use have been welcomed by industry professionals. The Ministry of Energy said last week that it had change the process of granting permission for CNG conversions and the new rules should speed up the process. Until now, it has taken more than three months for an application, which must go to the energy ministry in Nay Pyi Taw, to be approved. The new scheme does not need ministerial approval. All we need now is the signature of the ministry s managing director, said U Ko Lay from the CNG department in the ministry s Myanma Oil and Gas Enterprise. We gave authorisation for more than 500 cars in two days last week. Buses and taxis were converted to CNG after oil prices rose in 2005 but in 2009 the ministry stopped accepting new applications. However, when an overage car substitution program was launched in September 2011, many CNG-fitted vehicles became eligible for substitution. However, getting permission to install CNG in the cars imported to replace them was until the recent announcement a complex procedure. We had to wait more than three months for approval to convert our A man sits on the bonnet of a taxi converted to run on compressed natural gas under a program to reduce petrol and diesel imports Photo: Aung Htay Hlaing cars to CNG. The simpler rules are good news, said Thingangyun township taxi driver Ko Ta Yote Gyi. He said some taxi drivers whose cars were not eligible for the CNG program instead bought them on the black market, where a CNG system sells for about K3.5 million. Since the program was launched, 16,000 cars have been converted to CNG from petrol, and about 9000 cars from diesel, the ministry said. However, it has no plans to expand the program and allow more conversions because natural gas is needed for other purposes, U Ko Lay said. Oil and gas will run out one day, so we must be prudent, said U Ko Lay. We will not permit any other new vehicles to use CNG, although there are some exceptions for buses. Plaintiff complains over alleged police, lawyer conspiracy THAN NAING SOE POLICE and lawyers conspired to pervert the course of justice in altering a rape complaint, a lawyer and his client have claimed. They say a woman s accusation that her boss assaulted her was rewritten by her own lawyers at Pyin Oo Lwin police station to weaken the charge. Now a complaint has been lodged at the Union Supreme Court against the lawyers who allegedly distorted the facts of the case. Ma Zar Chi Soe complained to Pyin Oo Lwin police that she had been raped by her boss, U Aye Myint, in July A lawyer, U Po Aye, and four junior lawyers accompanied her to the police station with the written complaint. When we arrived at the police station, the lawyers didn t let me enter the commander s office. They told me I didn t understand the law and made me wait outside. Two other lawyers, U Kyaw Than and Daw Khin Sandi Htwe, entered the office. An hour later they came out and said they had rewritten the complaint because it was not strong enough, and they made me sign the new version, said Ma Zar Chi Soe Moe. However, the revised version of the complaint does not describe what happened, said Ma Zar Chi Soe. When the case came to court, it was on the basis of the rewritten version. I told them to enter my original complaint to the court, but the prosecution did not do so. When I gave evidence, I told the court what had actually happened, she said. U Aye Myint also faces a range of related charges in the case, including swearing, causing bodily harm, cheating and trespassing. The court hearing is ongoing. Advocate U Zaw Win, who is now working on the case, told The Myanmar Times, The original complaint says U Aye Myint entered Ma Zar Chi Soe s house and threatened, beat and raped her. But the rewritten version of the complaint said he failed to marry her and beat her after he came into her house. The police entered the second complaint in court. The real case is quite different. U Zaw Win said he had filed complaints in June 2012 against Pyin Oo Lwin police and the lawyers, alleging that they perverted the course of justice, but no action has been taken so far. I think her case has been badly handled since the very beginning, he said. Neither Pyin Oo Lwin police nor the original lawyers could be reached for comment last week. Translation by Thiri Min Htun
12 12 News THE MYANMAR TIMES DECEMBER 2-8, 2013 Taw Win workers avoid jail over protest march NOE NOE AUNG SIX labour representatives from the embattled Taw Win timber factory who were fined K10,000 by Sanchaung township court last week said they had expected to be given jail terms for their role in organising an illegal protest. The representatives were charged under section 18 of the peaceful protest law in four townships Sanchaung, Mayangone, Insein and Shwe Pyi Thar for organising a march of more than 200 workers from the factory, in Shwe Pyi Thar, in The court found them guilty on all four counts but only imposed a fine. The law enables judges to impose a one-year jail term for violations. We thought we would go to prison as other people who were charged under section 18 were given jail terms last week. But now the court just fined us K10,000 each, Ko Nay Linn Oo said outside the court. Their legal ordeal is not over, however. The workers are still facing eight charges that were filed against them based on complaints from the owner of Taw Win company. In October 2012, Taw Win workers marched from their factory to the company s head office to meet with the owner, U Ko Ko Htwe, and discuss the discrimination and arbitrary cutting of salaries that they said was rife in the factory. Worker representative Ma Thida Aung said the march had not been pre-planned and was the result of workers buses being blocked. We tried to negotiate with the factory director but it failed so all workers went to the owner to explain our difficulties, she said. But our buses were prohibited near U Wisara Road where the company s head office is so we got off and walked. That s all we did but then Sanchaung police charged us under section 18. Last Comrade passes away But government ignores the death of Bo Ye Htut, 92, who was the last surviving member of the 30 Comrades NAN TIN HTWE I COULDN T call him father. I didn t know how to, said 61-year-old U Kyaw Kyaw, trying to mask his sadness under his glasses. Speaking from his home in Yangon s Hlaing township, he was recalling the moment when, at the age of 12, he met his father, who had just left the Communist Party of Burma and returned hom, for the first time since he was three years old. When his mother asked him to call his father for lunch one day a way of urging the long-separated pair to re-connect I just went to his room and told him, Let s eat lunch. I hid the pronoun. Then he looked at me and asked, Who are you speaking to? So I pointed at him. It was more than a year before the young U Kyaw Kyaw could bring himself to use the word father when speaking about Bo Ye Htut one of the group of ordinary men who, led by General Aung San, became soldiers for their country s fight for freedom from colonial rule. During the British era, the team trained under the Japanese and, bonded to one another by blood, returned to lead their country to independence. Today, the 30 Comrades are considered to be the founders of the country s military and part of the reason it is still accorded such longstanding respect, even after so many turbulent decades. At the age of 92, the group s last surviving member, U Aung Thein, better known by the nom de guerre Bo Ye Htut, passed away at 10pm on November 27. Reflecting on his father s life, both at the crucial turning point of the country s history and afterward, U Kyaw Kyaw believed he and his father always had the same aim in politics particularly in their support of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and the ideals of a non-violent struggle for freedom. In 1963, U Kyaw Kyaw heard his father s voice on the radio saying why he had left the CPB. He was saying he was leaving the CBP [which had been waging war against the government] not because he didn t believe in Communism. It was the strategy. The CBP believed that they had to use arms and fight but my father wanted to talk, negotiate. He believed using arms would lead nowhere. The decision to leave the CPB caused significant hardship for Bo Ye Htut, nephew U Thit Lwin said, and left him alone and disconnected from his comrades. But U Thit Lwin said he was proud of his uncle s sacrifices, whether Former Prime Minister U Khin Nyunt signs a condolence book in front of photos of Bo Ye Htut on November 29. Photo: Thiri during the hardship of training under the Japanese, amid the dangers of the independence struggle, making the difficult decision to step away from the CPB or getting involved in the 1988 uprisings. Characteristically, he acted and spoke decisively, U Thit Lwin said. He was very strict and disciplined. The family members said their grief was tempered by the fact that the 92-year-old had lived a long life for the most part together with family and relatives and few others had seen more of the events that shaped Myanmar s political history. All of the 30 Comrades are gone. But we don t have independence yet. U Kyaw Kyaw Son of Bo Ye Htut One dark cloud, however, has cast a shadow over what should be a time of reflection and celebration of his father s legacy, U Kyaw Kyaw said. He expressed disappointment over the lack of acknowledgement given to his father s passing, and in particular the way Bo Ye Htut s obituary appeared in state-run daily newspaper Myanma Ahlin. I went there early to place the ad, said U Kyaw Kyaw. They always put the oldest person at the top. Now see what a government organisation does. The paper ran a small notice on November 29 on the middle right side of a page. Dominating the rest of the page were condolence messages over the death of a 90-year-old colonel from No 77 Light Infantry Division, including one from Amyotha Hluttaw Speaker U Khin Aung Myint. U Kyaw Kyaw said no such messages from government officials were included in his father s notice a stark contrast, he said, to the recent passing of more infamous figures, such as notorious businessman Lo Hsing Han. The founder of Asia World, a company known for its close ties to the former military regime, he was widely known as the godfather of heroin. As of the evening of November 29, U Kyaw Kyaw said, not one government official had visited or called the family to express condolences. He pointed out that presidential spokesperson U Ye Htut, an active Facebook user who responds to almost every event including the recent passing of a 25-year-old journalist who died in a motorcycle accident offered no words on the passing of the last member of Myanmar s independence movement and a comrade of General Aung San. This lack of official recognition of the sacrifices of the 30 Comrades has been all too common as they have passed away one by one. Asking not to be named, a relative of another deceased comrade said in the past families had not even been allowed to mention the phrase 30 Comrades in obituaries. I really liked what one of my friends said when he learned about my father s death, U Kyaw Kyaw said. All of the 30 Comrades are gone. But we don t have independence yet. One notable figure with ties to both politics and the military did pay tribute to the family, however. U Khin Nyunt, a former prime minister and chief of Military Intelligence, visited the family s home on November 29. Surrounded by photos of Bo Ye Htut posing with other comrades in their uniforms or with family members in a white suit, U Khin Nyunt said the vital role the 30 Comrades played in Myanmar s history will never be repeated. They are the fathers of Myanmar s independence, he told The Myanmar Times, and also the fathers of the Tatmadaw. U Khin Nyunt added that the loss of the last living member of the group will not cause their memory to be forgotten. People will keep telling their stories. They will always be bright. Govt allows Chinese health clinics to stay open despite complaints SHWE YEE SAW MYINT A LOOPHOLE in the law allows Chinese traditional clinics to operate, despite claims that patients have been harmed by the treatment they receive there. A health department official has told The Myanmar Times that the authorities can crack down on Western or traditional Myanmar clinics that break the law but can take no action against Chinese traditional clinics. Health department director general Dr Min Than Nyunt said health authorities have no power to take legal action against Chinese clinics. If we see a Western clinic or a Myanmar traditional clinic break the law, we can punish them by laws governing the medical council or the Myanmar traditional medicine council. But [in the case of a Chinese traditional medicine clinic] we can t help, he said. The government does not permit Chinese traditional clinics to operate and has no rules to regulate them, he said. We know our health department has to do something, but nobody takes the responsibility, Dr Min Than Nyunt said. For some patients, the consequences can be dire. Daw San San Aye, 52, had to have two toes amputated after seeking treatment at a Chinese traditional clinic for an injury to her foot. The Mingalar Taung Nyunt township resident, who works with her husband selling fruit, went to a Chinese rheumatology clinic on 93 rd Street after hurting her foot in a fall. A herb poultice was applied, which she said caused a burning sensation. When she said she couldn t stand the pain, I thought it might get better the next day, her husband, U Cho Cho, told The Myanmar Times. But when his wife sought treatment for her foot, now blistered, at another private clinic, she was referred to Yangon General Hospital, where she was told her foot was ulcerated and that she was diabetic. My wife was operated on immediately, and the next day the doctor said her toes had been damaged by the medicine. She had to have two toes amputated, said U Cho Cho, who blames the Chinese clinic s treatment. In July he submitted a complaint to the ward administration over the clinic and the owner came to negotiate three times at the ward administration department. In the end he said he had no responsibility for my wife s case, said U Cho Cho. We re not satisfied. We know Chinese clinics operate illegally, so why don t health officials close this clinic? said U Cho Cho, who has complained to government ministries as well as to Myanmar s medical council and traditional medical council. He says he has had no response. Health authorities have indicated that Daw San San Aye s diabetes may have been a factor leading to the amputation. However, Yangon General Hospital orthopaedic specialist Dr Myat Lwin said he had seen many patients who had undergone Myanmar and Chinese traditional treatment before coming to the hospital and amputations were not unheard of. Some patients have had their leg amputated as a result of side effects from traditional medicine, he said. Yangon Region s Department of Health has uncovered scores of unlicensed medical clinics across the city since July, said department head Dr Aye Ko Ko. He said his department had instructed township supervisory committees to check all private clinics. Most committees had found at least three or four unlicensed clinics in their townships, he said, most of which specialise in Chinese traditional medicine.
13 Task force uncovers illegal alcohol sales in Mandalay SI THU LWIN A TASK force established in February 2011 to probe illegal sales of alcohol in Mandalay Region has found violations in nearly 90 percent of the cases it has investigated, a government minister says. Mandalay Region Minister for Border Affairs and Security Colonel Aung Kyaw Moe said the task force the joint project between General Administration Department, the Myanmar Police Force, and the heads of ward and village administration offices - has investigated 1434 shops since 2011 and has found violations in 1246 cases. Col Aung Kyaw Moe was speaking during the eighth regular session of the Mandalay Region Hluttaw. He was responding to a question by Pyigyitagun 1 representative U Thein Lwin about the role played by ward and village heads in cracking down on illegal sales of alcohol throughout the region. U Thein Lwin said some shops are selling alcohol with proper licences but many others are peddling imported beer and wine without legal permission. Imported and locally produced beer is displayed for sale at a supermarket. Photo: Yadanar He added that the heads of ward or village administrative offices were responsible for taking action in cases involving illegal alcohol sales. Col Aung Kyaw Moe said those who engage in such activities can be fined or jailed. The heads of ward or village administrative offices must report the situation of illegal liquor stores, in collaboration with district administrative officials, he said. If the heads of administrative offices at the ward or village level fail in these duties, they will be investigated and will be allowed to resign from their posts, or action can also be taken that could result in the termination of their duties. Translation by Thiri Min Htun News 13 President asks for moderate salary PRESIDENT U Thein Sein has turned down the K5 million a month salary proposed in a new bill governing salaries of senior state officials. Instead, he asked the finance ministry to set a moderate sum, a deputy minister says. Parliament discussed the bill on November 15. Two days prior to the closing of the session, MPs agreed to finalise the bill during the next session instead. It will regulate salaries for top Union, state and regional officials, heads of self-administered regions and MPs. Amyotha Hluttaw Speaker U Khin Aung Myint said the salaries should be set by the finance ministry based on the current financial situation. On November 13, Deputy Minister for Finance U Maung Maung Thein called the president on the phone during a break in the discussions to ask him about his proposed salary. The president said he wouldn t take the K5 million fixed by the law, but he didn t say how much he wanted. He asked us to fix a moderate salary for him, he told the speaker. The Amyotha Hluttaw committee dealing with the bill is proposing to fix the president s salary at K1.5 million, while the vice presidents, the two hluttaw speakers and the chief justice would each receive K1.2 million. Pyae Thet Phyo, translation by Thiri Min Htun
15 News 15 Peace marchers fined, but unrepentant BY BILL O TOOLE KACHIN peace activists Ma May Sabae Phyu and Ko Jaw Gun were last week ordered to pay a K10,000 kyat fine for their role in organising a march to mark International Day of Peace in September 2012 but escaped a possible jail term. The ruling in Yangon s Sanchaung township court on November 26 was just the latest chapter in a legal saga that has stretched more than one year and involved more than 130 separate court dates for the pair and their fellow protest organisers. Friends and supporters gathered outside the court as the two exited. The crowd included representatives from local civil society groups, international non-government organisations and even the British embassy in Yangon. Ma May Sabae Phyu and Ko Jaw Gun, along with seven other individuals who helped to organise the march, were charged under section 18 of the Peaceful Assembly and Peaceful Procession Law. The controversial provision in the law states that any group that stages a peaceful protest without permission from the township police chief and administrator can face up to one year in prison. The act has been widely criticised by activists and humanitarian groups since it was passed in 2011 and brought into force by the enactment of by-laws in They argue that it is yet another example of the government using the law as a weapon against free speech, although a politician from the Union Solidarity and Development Party recently submitted an amendment to parliament that would remove the section and make it significantly easier to hold demonstrations. To date, more than 230 people have been charged under the law. For the many gathered outside the courtroom in Sanchaung, Ma May Sabae Phyu and Ko Jaw Gun are prime examples of the government s oppression. Daw Khon Ja, a coordinator for the Kachin Women s Peace Network, said that the organisers of the march had applied for permission one month in advance but it was rejected on the basis that it would cause traffic congestion. She said they had decided to proceed with the march because they felt it was needed to galvanise opposition to the conflict in Kachin State. At that time the war in Kachin was Activists Ma May Sabe Phyu and Ko Jaw Gun stand outside Sanchaung township court on November 26 after each received a K10,000 fine for organising a peace march in September Photo: Aung Htay Hlaing so severe more than 100,000 [people were displaced], she said. And also the peace talks weren t going well, so unless the people jumped into the process there would be no peace in Myanmar. That s what [we] decided. [They are] only asking for peace in a non-violent and beautiful way. Daw Khon Ja Kachin Women s Peace Network Since then, the nine organisers have been in and out of courtrooms around the city to face charges in every township the marchers passed through. [They are] only asking for peace in a non-violent and beautiful way They should not be harassed or arrested or made to appear in court, Daw Khon Ja said. It is unfair. If article 18 cannot be implemented properly it should not be implemented in Myanmar. Joe Fisher, a diplomat from the British embassy who watched the court proceedings, echoed the Kachin activist s sentiments. The current legislation and the way that it is being implemented is a cause for serious concern, he said. [Section 18] is not in line with international human rights standards We urge as a priority for the government and parliament to amend this legislation. Though the proceedings ended with the judge passing a relatively lenient sentence, Ma May Sabae Phyu and Ko Jaw Gun said afterwards, they were unhappy with the court process, particularly the protracted nature of their case. It seems that I am being harassed. It seems like a waste of time and energy, Ko Jaw Gun said after the verdict. Ma May Sabae Phyu agreed. This prolonged court case... [is] just about limiting our activities and threatening us. Both defendants said that as a result of the trial they had been forced to reduce their efforts to assist the peace process and individuals displaced by the conflict, of which there are more than 100,000. Though they have received support for the Kachin Peace Network and pro bono legal support from the Lawyers Network, they said the case has been an ordeal for them and their families. Nevertheless, they said they remain determined to continue their activism and even plan to appeal the verdict in a higher court. When asked if she was surprised at how long it had taken to reach a verdict, Ma May Sabae Phyu said it was precisely the kind of treatment activists in Myanmar expect from the legal system. Even [the] government and the president are talking about [problems with] rule of law in our country, she said. The experience we have been facing is that there is no rule of law at all. Our legal system and our justice system are just ruined. It s just collapsed. Lawyers preparing to appeal convictions EI EI TOE LWIN MEMBERS of the Lawyers Network are preparing to appeal to the Yangon Region High Court over the conviction of two peace march organisers under section 18 of the peaceful protest law. Nine people are facing 10 charge in six township courts for allegedly violating section 18 by organising a march in Yangon on September 21, 2012, to mark International Day of Peace. Of the nine, activists Ko Jaw Gun and Ma May Sabae Phyu were sentenced to one month imprisonment or a K10,000 fine for the Sanchaung and Dagon township charges by a judge in Sanchaung township court on November 26. We paid the K10,000 in each court instead of going to prison but it doesn t mean that we admit we are guilty. We paid the fine because we respect the court, but we don t agree with the decision, Ko Jaw Gun said. Ma May Sabae Phyu said she did not expect such an awful result from the trial, which has been running for more than one year. The pair immediately announced plans to appeal the ruling. Lawyer U Maung Maung Soe said they had only agreed to pay the fine after he explained that they could still appeal the ruling to the High Court. At first they did not agree to pay the fine because they thought that it meant admitting guilt, he said. But after I explained the legal process to them, they agreed to pay. Under section 408 and 439 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, people can apply to the High Court to amend or change the decision of a lower court. We are trying to put [together] the appeal with all our evidence and witnesses to show they are not guilty. Ko Jaw Gun and Ma May Sabae Phyu will next appear in court on January 5.
16 16 News THE MYANMAR TIMES DECEMBER 2-8, 2013 IN BRIEF Myanaung Pills found in drinking water were painkillers, tests show Laboratory tests on a classroom water-pot in Ayeyarwady Region have shown a series of mysterious tablets discovered in August were not poisonous, a local police officer told The Myanmar Times. In three separate incidents, children found unidentified tablets in their drinking water at a primary school in Taungpatlal village, Myanaung township. The scare led teachers to request that all students bring their own water bottles from home. Nonetheless, the parents of eight students chose to either transfer or withdraw their children from classes due to safety concerns, according to a school official. Testing at a Yangon lab revealed traces of the painkiller paracetamol. No suspects have been yet found, but police say that due to the non-threatening nature of the chemicals involved the case has been closed. Aung Kyaw Min NOE NOE AUNG THE jailing of two men who led protests against the confiscation of land in Yangon s Thingangyun township has prompted others displaced by the land grab to launch a 24-hour protest. U Sein Than and U Kyaw Lwin were sentenced to three months jail with hard labour on the morning of November 26 under section 18 of the peaceful protest law, which allows judges to impose a sentence of up to one year of jail on those found to have participated in an illegal protest. Four other protest leaders have also been charged. The pair helped to lead protests by former residents of Mee Gyaung Kan 1, 2 and 3 wards in Thingangyun, who were evicted from their homes by the military in The residents have staged seven protests in recent months calling for compensation for the return of their former land. U Sein Than and U Kyaw Lwin were sent to Insein prison on November 26 and we started the protest after that, demonstrator Ma Nay Nwe Than said. Sitting along the pavement on Waizayandar Road, demonstrators chanted slogans and erected vinyl banners that read Give Our Land Back. Their demands include for the authorities to stop construction on the disputed land, to resolve the dispute as soon as possible and to release the people who have been charged or jailed under section 18. In October, the Mee Gyaung Kan residents staged a 24-hour protest in front of City Hall that ended after three days and the intervention of two MPs from the parliament s land dispute investigation commission. Military officials said they would negotiate if the residents could show documentation proving they had lived in Mee Gyaung Kan ward, while the MPs promised to help the residents in negotiating with military. No resolution has yet been reached, however. Jailing prompts fresh protests Former residents of Mee Kyaung Kan ward in Thingangyun township protest beside Waizayandar Road on November 26. Photo: Ko Taik TRADEMARK CAUTION NOTICE is hereby given that GREE ELECTRIC APPLIANCES, INC. ZHUHAI. a company organized under the laws of P.R. China and having its principal office at Jinji West Road, Qianshan, Zhuhai, Guangdong, China is the owner and sole proprietor of the following trademark:- TOSOT (Reg: Nos. IV/4185/2010 & IV/10574/2013) in respect of :- Compressors[machines];compressors for refrigerators; air condensers; presses; moulding machines; electronic industry equipment; machines and machine tools; electric motors; wire bundles (parts of electric motors); valves (parts of machines); filtering machines; filters (parts of machines or engines); filters for cleaning cooling air (for engines); pouring plastic machine; conveyors (machines); belts for machines; wrapping machines; packaging machines; electric blenders for household purposes; washing machines; wringing machines for laundry; drying machines; spray-paint machines; spraying guns for paint; printing machines; machines and apparatus for cleaning [electric] ; curtain drawing devices electrically operated; Ironing machines; sewing machines; mechanical devices for bicycle industry; crushing machines; dyeing machines; sizing machines; vacuum cleaners; household Bean Juice Maker; beverage preparation machines, electromechanical; electric portable drills (excluding electric coal borer); electromagnetic clutches, other than for land vehicles; sealing joints [part of machines]; yogurt making machines; bread making machines; motors, electric, other than for land vehicles; metalworking machines; spraying machines; crushing machines; grinders/crushers, electric, for household purposes; kitchen machines, electric cooking oil presses; meat choppers [machines]; electric dough makers; electromechanical food preparation machines, namely tofu making machines; bean sprout growing machines; sugar cane presses; vegetable washing machines; noodle making machines; dish washers; agitators for kitchen use; mixing machines; electric crushers for household use; electric fruit presses for household use; electric food processors; vegetable slicers for household use, electric; meat slicers for household use, electric; soy milk makers for kitchen use; electric yogurt makers; garbage disposals; steam cleaning machines; food waste disposals Class: 7 Capacitors; Diskettes; Magnetic heads to be used with diskettes; Radios; Tape recorders; Acoustic apparatus; La Loudspeakers; Amusement apparatus adapted for use with an external display screen or monitor; Amusement apparatus adapted for use with television receivers only; wide screen color displays; Electrolysers; Resistances, electric; integrated circuits; Computers; Data processing apparatus; Computer Programs [programs], recorded; Telephone apparatus; transmitters of electronic signals; Electro-dynamic apparatus for the remote control of signals; Antennas; cameras[photography]; Record players; Counterfeit [false] coin detectors; Alarm bells, electric; Flat irons, electric; Copper wires, insulated; enameled wires; electricity mains (Material for-)[wires, cables]; Wires, electric; Cables, electric; Games (Apparatus for-) adapted for use with an external display screen or monitor; Surveying instruments; Video game cartridges; Photocopiers [photographic, electrostatic, thermic]; Plugs, sockets and other contacts [electric connections] ; Disks [magnetic]; Amplifiers; Electronic pens [visual display units]; Computer software [recorded]; Phonograph records; Batteries for lighting; Magnetic wires; electric temperature sensors; Electric temperature indicators; electric wire clusters Class: 9 aesthetic massage apparatus; massage apparatus; medical apparatus and instruments; cases fitted for medical instruments; hearing protectors; sterilizing and disinfecting instruments for medical use; hot air therapeutic apparatus; electric blankets for medical use; ultraviolet ray lamps for medical use; lasers for medical use; electric acupuncture instruments; ultrasonic device for medical use; hearing aids Class: 10 Air conditioning installations; ventilation [air-conditioning] installations and apparatus; Air reheaters; radiators, electric; heat accumulators; laundry dryers, electric; fans [airconditioning]; air dehumidifiers; air purifying apparatus and machines; cooking apparatus and installations; extractor hoods for kitchen use; coal gas water heaters; electric water headers; electromagnetic oven; Cooking utensils, electric; electric drinking water dispensers; electric kettles; air humidifiers; pressure cookers [autoclaves], electric; air conditioners for vehicles; fans (parts of air conditioning installations); filters for air conditioning; heater for vehicles; air dryers; air sterilizers; electric hair dryers; Evaporators; Sterilizers; sterilizing cupboard; heat exchangers(not parts of machines); exhaust fans; solar energy water heaters; electric iron pans; Heaters for baths; gas burners; air refreshers; Refrigerators; microwave ovens(cooking apparatus); water purification installations; dish washers; egg boilers; electric appliances for making yogurt; Steam facial apparatus (saunas); bread toasters; electric coffee machines; electric foot washers; bakers ovens; electric slowcookers lighting apparatus and installations; germicidal lamps for purifying air; ultraviolet ray lamps not for medical use; electric cooking utensils; electric cook tops; kitchen ovens; electric coffee filters; electric coffee machines; electric rice cookers; electric pressure cookers; freezers; cooling installations for water; refrigerating containers; ice machines and apparatus; ice cream making machines; thermoelectric wine cellars; air filtering installations; gas purifying apparatus; ionization device for air or water treatment; electric hair driers; electric laundry dryers; electric fans; extractor hoods for kitchens; induction stoves; electric kettles; Turkish baths apparatus; bath tubs; wash-hand basins being parts of sanitary installations; steam facial saunas; portable foot bath; desalination equipments; installation for purification of waste water; filters being parts of household or industrial installations; water purifying apparatus; sterilizers, not for medical purpose; water softening apparatus; oil purifying installations; waste water treatment devices; electric dish sterilizers; drinking water dispensers; electric space heaters Class: 11 Items of services; Paper; copying paper(stationery); Hygienic paper; towels of paper; Advertisement boards of paper or cardboard; note books; Newspaper; Pictures; Packing paper; bookbinding apparatus (office equipment); office requisites, except furniture; prepared Chinese ink; stamps (seals); writing instruments; Gums (adhesives) for stationery or household purposes; drawing instruments; drawing materials; Typewriters (electric or non-electric); teaching materials, except apparatus; Chaplets Class:16 Advertising services for others; import-export agencies; promoting sales of products or services for others; Computer databases (Systemization of information into-); preparation and/or co-ordination of bids on behalf of others in tender processes; Business consultancy (Professional-); management (advisory services for business-); marketing analysis for others; Management consultancy (Personnel-); Accounting; commercial and industrial management assistance; Auditing Class:-35 Air conditioning apparatus installation and repair; Upholstering services; Heating equipment installation and repair; machinery installation, maintenance and repair; electric appliances installation and repair; freezing equipment installation and repair; computer hardware installation, maintenance and repair; office machines and equipment installation, maintenance and repair; Eliminating interference in electrical apparatus; Cleaning clothes for others Class:-37 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 GREE ELECTRIC APPLIANCES, INC. OF ZHUHAI. P.O. Box No. 26, Yangon. Phone: Dated: 2 nd December, 2013
18 18 News THE MYANMAR TIMES DECEMBER 2-8, 2013 Suzuki donates motorcycles to police PYAE THET PHYO SUZUKI has donated 100 motorcycles to the Myanmar police in advance of this month s Southeast Asian Games so that visiting dignitaries can be accompanied by a security motorcade. The Japanese automobile maker offered the donation, valued at K1.2 billion (about US$1.35 million), at a November 25 ceremony held at Myanmar International Convention Center. Suzuki vice president Mr Toshihiro Suzuki said the gift was intended to deepen friendship between the two countries, as well as to promote its brand image. Suzuki has a plan to help Myanmar, so I would like to request the Myanmar government to help Suzuki, Japan s ambassador Ichiro Maruyama told the ceremony. Suzuki announced in February it would resume manufacturing light trucks in Myanmar. Translation by Zar Zar Soe Traffic police test-drive donated Suzuki motorcycles at Nay Pyi Taw s Myanmar International Convention Center on November 25. Photo: Pyae Thet Phyo Activist founds networks KHIN SU WAI PROCLAIMING as his goals liberty, equality and justice, activist Moe Thee Zun has launched networks in Mandalay, Bago and Magwe regions. The goal is to strengthen civil society and improve human rights issues, the former leader of the All Burma Students Democratic Front. For the past 25 years, we thought political propaganda was more important than the development of our cities. Now we have to find out what Mandalay needs in terms of health, economy, the environment and social equality, and find solutions, he said. For example, Mandalay royal moat and the Shwe Ta Chaung area are polluted how can we preserve them? Yatanarbon University has no Wi-Fi internet access how can it be provided? Where will the funds come from? Among the issues he wants addressed are human rights, land grabbing, peace, the introduction of a federal system and amending the 2008 constitution. The networks members will consist of those who took part in the 1974 and 1988 uprisings, politicians, monks and other activists. Moe Thee Zun said he plans to form a political party but is still discussing his application for Myanmar citizenship with the immigration department. A student activist in the 1988 uprising, he and thousands of other students fled to the border in the aftermath of a military crackdown and helped to found the ABSDF, a student army that aimed to topple the military regime. He was later resettled in the United States and subsequently became a US citizen. Myanmar third worst for landmine casualties Lack of data means the number killed or injured by mines could be far higher, says monitoring group WA LONE MYANMAR has the third-highest number of casualties due to antipersonnel landmines globally since 1999, the Landmine and Cluster Munition Monitor said in its annual report last week. The report, released on November 26, put Myanmar behind only Afghanistan and Colombia but ahead of Pakistan and Cambodia in the top five. However, Yeshua Moser-Puangsuwan, a research coordinator and editor of the landmines monitor, said the top two countries have vastly better surveillance systems to track the number of mine-related casualties. From 1999 through to the end of 2012, the watchdog group identified at least 3349 landmine casualties in Myanmar. But the report said neither the Tatmadaw nor ethnic armed groups released data on the number of casualties, while Ministry of Health statistics do not differentiate between injuries due to minesincidents from other traumatic injuries. If the actual casualty statistics were known here, Myanmar might rank higher, Mr Moser-Puangsuwan said. The group has identified more than 50 townships in Chin, Kachin, Kayin, Kayah, Mon, Rakhine, and Shan states, as well as Bago and Tanintharyi regions, that suffer to some degree from mine contamination, primarily antipersonnel mines. Kayin State and eastern Bago Region are the most heavily mine-affected areas. Mr Moser-Puangsuwan said that while the government is in peace talks with ethnic armed groups there has been little discussion about demining. Why do they use landmines against each other [while they are] negotiating peace? he said. More than 80 percent of the world s governments have signed a treaty banning landmines but Myanmar is among those that have not. The report said state-owned Myanmar Defence Industries - known locally by its Myanmar-language acronym, Ka Pa Sa - produces fragmentation and blast antipersonnel mines, including ones with low metal content, at Nyaung Chay Dauk in western Bago division. Non-state armed groups, including the Kachin Independence Army, Karen National Liberation Army, Democratic Karen Buddhist Army, Karenni Army and the United Wa State Army have produced both blast and fragmentation mines. If the actual casualty statistics were known, Myanmar might rank higher. Yeshua Moser-Puangsuwan Editor, Landmine and Cluster Munition Monitor Speaking at the ASEAN Summit in November 12, President U Thein Sein said that while Myanmar has not yet signed the Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention, also known as the Ottawa Convention, it always opposes the excessive use of land mines. We need to use landmines in order to safeguard the life and property of people and [for] self - defence, the president said. Myanmar has agreed in principle to the creation of a mine action centre under the Myanmar Peace Center but the center has not yet been established. U Aung Min, the government s chief peace negotiator, told the Landmine and Cluster Munition Monitor that mine clearance is a priority for the government but that the peace negotiations and agreements between the government and ethnic minorities need to be firmly established before it can begin.
19 Swiss offer US$2m for improving corporate social responsibility News 19 EU offers aid, condemns conditions in IDP camps AYE SAPAY PHYU SWITZERLAND will provide nearly US$2 million over the next three years to support Myanmar in improving social and environmental responsibility in the economy, the country s Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research said last month. The director of Switzerland s State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), Marie-Gabrielle Ineichen- Fleisch, signed the agreement during the visit of a Swiss economic mission to Myanmar, the statement said. The first economic dialogue between representatives of Myanmar and Switzerland was held at the Ministry of National Planning and Economic Development in Nay Pyi Taw on November 19. A report in the state-run New Light of Myanmar on November The objective is to improve general labour conditions and efficiency in textiles, tourism and food processing. 20 said both sides discussed the granting of work permits, marketing plans, smooth commodity flow, investment and trade frameworks, procurement, intellectual property rights, infrastructure, the tourism industry, the banking system, labour rights, social accountability and sustainable economic development. The statement said the objective of the financial assistance was to improve general labour conditions and resource efficiency in Myanmar s strategically important economic sectors of textiles, tourism and food processing. Within the context of its Economic Cooperation and Development, SECO is collaborating on this effort with the International Labour Organisation and the United Nations Industrial Developing Organisation, the statement said. Specifically, this entails combating child labour and unsafe working conditions, and promoting more efficient use of water, energy and other raw materials in the production process. More than two-thirds of the $2 million will be spent on projects for improving general labour conditions, the statement said, adding, Myanmar is now increasingly opening up and entering the global economy. But it faces enormous social and ecological challenges, and these are seriously threatening the country s development opportunities. BILL O TOOLE THE European Commission has promised to increase humanitarian support to Myanmar s conflict areas but issued a harsh assessment of conditions in IDP camps in Rakhine State, likening them to the Jewish ghettos set up by the Nazis. Describing the levels of need and deprivation he witnessed on his visit to Sittwe in late November, Claus Sorrenson, the director general of the EU s Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection department (ECHO), told reporters on November 23, at the conclusion of a five-day visit, that the conditions cannot be a part of modern society. Mr Sorrenson likened the lack of humanitarian aid and the restrictions on movement for displaced Rohingya, who are known officially as Bengalis, to the situation in Apartheid-era South Africa, or Poland under Nazi occupation. I remember European history, where Jews were locked up in the ghettos, he said. We all know how that ended. He said ECHO will give an additional 3 million euros (US$4.05 million) for food aid in Rakhine and Claus Sorensen, director general of the European Commission s Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection, speaks to reporters on November 23. Photo: AFP Kachin states in It will continue to fund programs and projects in other parts of the country. While Mr Sorrenson decried the treatment of Muslims in Rakhine State, he also praised the attitude of the government ministers, including chief peace negotiator U Aung Min, whom he met in Nay Pyi Taw on November 22. He said the government officials he met showed definite signals of wanting to develop a road map to expand the rights of minority groups in Rakhine State, including the Rohingya. He called on non-governmental organisations and civil society groups to push the Union Government to keep its promises. Now it s a question of making it happen, he said. We re talking about 800,000 individuals. They re not going anywhere. They re not going to all go on the boats and disappear into the ocean, which, by the way, is a scandal. They will stay there, so we have to find a way for them to stay there safely.
20 20 THE MYANMAR TIMES December 2-8, 2013 Business Mobile banking en route Aye Thidar Kyaw MOBILE banking is coming to Myanmar, says the Cooperative Bank. As soon as they get the green light from the Central Bank, account holders will be able to make money transfers and even spend money in restaurants and shops using their mobile phones, said U Oo Thein Myint, who handles mobile banking for CB Bank. The Central Bank has already devised electronic banking rules to allow mobile banking for all domestic banks, sources said. The Central Bank has hinted that agreement might come next month. We have tested our software systems and we are ready, said U Oo Thein Myint. $500 Total cost of installing a mobile banking point-of-sale device. Would-be users would be required to first open a savings account then install software on their mobile phones that would allow them to use the service. Charges will vary from free to about K1 per K1000 depending on the distance. Merchants wishing to use the service will also have to open an account and buy and install a point of sale device, the cost of which will be US$500, split between the bank and the vendor. Mobile banking has become an efficient alternative to traditional banking in developing countries as more people tend to have access to mobile phones rather than banks. Currently, less than 10 percent of Myanmar s population holds a bank account as Myanmar s economy remains largely cash-driven. Govt could issue new FDI rule Sandar Lwin THE government plans to issue new rules for the Foreign Investment Law as soon as this month, a Ministry of National Planning and Economic Development official said. The changes will focus on sectors in which foreign investment is restricted and are likely to be introduced in December or early next year, said Daw Mya Sandar, deputy director of the ministry s Business Promotion Section. We are working to change it but the issue date depends on the senior officials, she said. The revisions will focus entirely on the categories in which foreign investment can be allowed for example, the service sector and I guess that the number of [restrictions] will be reduced in that category. The changes will be based on feedback provided by government ministries and some sectors are likely to be opened up to foreign investment for the first time in several decades, a number of government officials said. Directors and other officials have been given responsibility for revising each sector. [They found that] the present sectoral restrictions have some contradictions, such as in construction, said Daw San San Myint, the DAYS 90 Deadline given to ministry officials to assemble the existing version of the Foreign Investment Law Women stitch together clothes at a garment factory outside of Yangon. New investment rules could make it easier for foreigners to director of the Directorate of Investment and Company Administration s Yangon branch. The Foreign Investment Law was approved by the Pyidaungsu Hluttaw, or national parliament, on November 2, The law stipulated that the rules, which provide detail on the law, be issued within 90 days, and they were enacted on January 31. However, ministry officials said this did not give them enough time to ensure the rules are clear and without contradictions. We had to rush to issue the present rules. We had to do them and the by-law within 90 days after the law was enacted, said a ministry official, who asked not to be named. We worked with the ministries to improve the rules but the ministries were also rushed to complete it on time. The official said the changes will have to be approved by cabinet. We will have to submit [the amendments] to the Myanmar Investment Commission and cabinet. After cabinet has approved [them] we will publicise the changes, the official said. There will be some changes based on the feedback provided by the relevant ministries. I can t tell you all of these but some new sectors, including railway transport, will be opened up to foreign investment. The current rules create five categories for business sectors, ranging from those that allow 100-percent foreign-owned businesses to those in which investment is not permitted. Other categories allow investment as a joint venture with a local partner, with approval from the rel-
21 BUSINESS editor: Philip Heijmans 21 Trade is up, but merchants want reform Business 22 Harbour high-rise plan left high and dry property 26 Exchange Rates (November 29 close) Currency Buying Selling Euro Malaysia Ringitt Singapore Dollar Thai Baht US Dollar K1330 K302 K782 K30.50 K977 K1340 K307 K787 K31.50 K978 s in December own certain businesses. Photo: Staff evant ministry or with approval from the ministry and a requirement to conduct an environmental impact assessment and social impact assessment. Restricted sectors include defence, the distribution of electricity, broadcast media, jade and gem exploration, and, in manufacturing, the production of Myanmar traditional medicine. In sectors including large-scale retail, natural resources, production and distribution of soft drinks and beer, and power generation, foreign investment is only permitted with ministry approval. Meanwhile, construction and real estate, tourism services, and the production of some food products, pharmaceuticals and plastics are only possible through a joint venture. Despite these restrictions, foreign direct investment in the first half of the financial year has already exceeded the amount for the whole of , data from DICA shows. Myanmar recorded contracted investment of US$ billion from April to September, $128 million more than the $1.419 billion in Fifty-seven businesses, including a foreign owned power plant, Heineken beer factor and a Nissan car factory have been approved so far this year, the majority in Yangon and in the manufacturing sector. The foreign investment law changes may not necessarily spark a rush of new investment. Jeremy Rathjen, vice president of consulting firm Thura Swiss, said Myanmar s foreign investment law was already in the top 10 percent when compared with other countries. Prospective investors, he said, are more concerned about infrastructure, electricity supply and rule of law. There are other issues that are much more pressing [such as] allowing foreigners to own shares in Myanmar-owned companies. If that were in the new rules, it would have an immediate impact, he said. [Myanmar companies] could instantly access more capital. At the moment the process is very convoluted what you need to do is start a new joint venture company and transfer existing assets into that company. If there is an asset a foreigner cannot own, like land, then you have problems. Nevertheless, some tweaking of the rules would be welcomed, he said. I can t imagine that their rules will be more arcane or it will be a step back, he said. I imagine that any new rules or regulations will be well thought-out and aimed at encouraging foreign investors. Additional reporting by Thomas Kean Rice bowl plan to bring the country back to the future MYANMAR plans to more than double rice shipments as the country that used to be the largest exporter embraces trade and opens its economy, challenging Thailand, Vietnam and Cambodia for sales amid a global glut. Shipments may increase to 2.5 million metric tonnes in from an estimated 1.8 million tonnes in the year that started April 1, according to Toe Aung Myint, director general of the Department of Trade Promotion at the Ministry of Commerce. Exports are targeted to increase to 4.8 million tonnes in , U Toe Aung Myint said in an interview in Hong Kong. Myanmar s reengagement with the global economy is spurring interest in the agricultural potential of one of Southeast Asia s poorest states. President Thein Sein said the country can supply food to the region, provided it attracts investment. While infrastructure bottlenecks and competition for sales are seen complicating the drive to increase shipments, the country s exports are cheaper than output from rivals including Thailand. Myanmar has a capacity to produce more but its logistics do not allow them to export a large volume, said Mamadou Ciss, president of Alliance Commodities (Suisse) SA, which handles 400,000 tonnes a year. Port facilities are very congested. It needs to work more on facilities and quality. The price of Thai 5 percent broken white rice, an Asian benchmark, tumbled 24pc to US$442 a tonne this year. World reserves will expand 1.2pc to million tonnes in as stockpiles in the five largest exporters, including Thailand, India and Vietnam, expand to records, according to forecasts from the London-based International Grains Council. The Standard & Poor s GSCI index of eight agricultural commodities slumped 20pc in Cheap rice from Myanmar makes the grain become attractive, compared with Thailand and Vietnam, which are about $80 a tonne more expensive, said Kiattisak Kanlayasirivat, a Bangkokbased director at Ascend Commodities SA, which trades about 500,000 tonnes a year. Sales will continue to increase. Agricultural output has fallen behind potential and efforts to revive the industry can take advantage of rising food demand, McKinsey Global Institute said in a report in June, noting Myanmar used to be known as the rice bowl of Asia. Milled rice supply is expected to total 12.9 million tonnes this crop year, topping local demand of 11 million tonnes, and output may increase to 13.3 million tonnes next season, Toe said. Export figures and forecasts include trade with China, which accounts for about half of total shipments, he said. We see promising opportunities in the sector because the global rice market grows and Chinese demand increases, U Toe Aung Myint said, listing China, African countries, Russia and Europe as buyers. We have resources and can produce more to meet demand. The rice industry contributed about 13pc of gross domestic product in 2011, and more than 70pc of the population is connected with the trade, according to a presentation from U Toe Aung Myint. Myanmar s strengths are low production costs, vast land and abundant water and labor, according to a 2012 study from the Asian Development Bank (ADB). Myanmar shares a border with China, and the US Department of Agriculture forecasts rice imports by Asia s largest economy will rise to 3.4 million tonnes next year, making it the biggest buyer. China s purchases may total 5 million tonnes in 2014, according to Samarendu Mohanty, senior economist at the International Rice Research Institute. Myanmar was the world s biggest rice exporter from 1961 to 1963, with shipments of 1.6 million to 1.7 million tonnes a year, until it was displaced by neighbour Thailand, according to data from the USDA that starts in Exports fell as low as 15,000 tonnes in Last year, it shipped 690,000 tonnes to rank ninth worldwide. A state rice-buying program in Thailand that costs $21 billion has spurred output while swelling government stockpiles to a record and hurting prices. The Thai hoard will increase 18pc to 14.9 million tonnes in , according to the IGC. Thailand shipped 7 million tonnes last year and was that season s largest exporter after India and Vietnam, which traded 11 million tonnes and 7.2 million tonnes respectively, USDA data show. Bloomberg Rice farmers cultivate seedlings in a paddy field outside Yangon. Photo: Staff IN BRIEF FMI markets launches sale of new shares at K10,000 per First Myanmar Investment is to raise K25 billion by February to fund major products, including the development of the Thilawa Special Economic Zone and the Grand Mee Ya Hta site. FMI announced last week that the company had launched the sale of 2.5 million shares at K10,000 each. U Theim Wai, FMI chair and managing agent, said shareholders would be given first refusal to buy until January 8, and any remaining shares would be sold to the public. Shareholders can buy as many shares they like. If there are any shares left after January 8, the public can buy them, he said. The shares will be sold through SPA Myanmar Ltd. Tin Yadanar Htun Philips re-enters market by appointing distributors Electronics giant Philips has re-entered the Myanmar market, naming three local distributors that will carry the global brand, the firm announced on November 25. The Pahtama Group will supply the consumer market, while JJ-Pun and Power Light will work in the service and commercial sectors, said the Philips announcement. The current energy infrastructure will come under increasing pressure. It is imperative that people make use of energy-efficient solutions, said Mieke De Schepper, general manager of Philips Lighting Singapore, adding that electricity costs can be reduced by US$9.7 million and 45 kilotons of CO 2 annually by switching to energy-efficient lighting technologies such light-emitting diodes (LED). Our products might be a little more expensive in the beginning but can last longer, said Ms De Schepper. Philips is also looking at future projects for generating renewable energy in the off-grid areas of the country. Aung Shin
22 22 Business THE MYANMAR TIMES December 2-8, 2013 Fewer bids than hoped for offshore oil, gas fields Aung Shin FINAL applications to work offshore oil and gas fields are fewer in number than expected. Only 30 out of a prequalified list of 61 companies have submitted proposals, the Ministry of Energy announced on November 28. Myanmar Oil and Gas Enterprise (MOGE), part of the energy ministry, opened the bidding for tenders on the 30 offshore blocks last April. A total of 75 international energy companies showed interest and the pre-qualified list of 61 was announced on July 4. The deadline for final proposals was November 15 and only 30 among 61 pre-qualified companies, including global energy giants such Daewoo, 64 Total applications to work offshore oil and gas fields in the latest round of tenders. PTTEP, TOTAL, Chevron, GAIL India, Hawkley, ONGC and Petronas, sent a total of 64 proposals. We don t know why fewer proposals [were made] for the final part of IN BRIEF offshore bidding. It depends on companies. But some worldwide energy giants are in the list of final proposals, said an anonymous official from the Ministry of Energy. The final result of 30 offshore blocks is likely to be announced early 2014 as the ministry has to review again the final proposals, the official said. Any company can apply for three blocks from 11 shallow-water blocks and 19 deep-water blocks. MOGE will grant licences for exploration and production activities. The international companies that applied for shallow-water blocks have to cooperate with a local partner according to MOGE s rules and regulations. I am not sure why there was less interest in final proposing. But I see two new changes in contract agreements with MOGE. Companies have to pay 10 percent of their annual budget as a deposit, and if they fail, MOGE will keep it. Another regulation requires energy companies to pay tax before being paid by MOGE, said U Kyaw Thu, a local energy expert. A total of 12 companies from Korea, China, Japan, India, Thailand and Vietnam are now working blocks in Rakhine, Moattama and Tanintharyi, while there are only three projects in the production stage. The investment in oil and gas sector, meanwhile, is on the rise, reaching US$14.37 billion as of February, according to data by the Myanmar Investment Commission. Vietnam Expo 2013 to be held in Myanmar next month Vietnam will be showcasing its products at Yangon s Tatmadaw Hall next month. Expo Myanmar 2013 will take place from December 12 to 15, said Vu Cuong, commercial counsellor at the Vietnamese embassy. On show will be food and beverages, consumer products, construction materials, pharmaceuticals and cosmetics, he said. We have been holding expos here since 2002, and this will be our ninth. Vietnamese products are inexpensive and high-quality, and I hope the people of Myanmar like them, said Mr Vu. Vietnam exports US$30 billion worth of steel a year, said U Than Aung Kyaw, director of the Ministry of Commerce directorate of trade. Vietnamese investment in Myanmar could bring job opportunities, he said. Myat Noe Oo Bilateral trade is up, but merchants want reform AFTER posting strong results so far this year, Myanmar is likely to reach a government target of US$25 billion in bilateral trade, or an increase of percent year-on-year, in the fiscal year, an official said. Merchants, meanwhile, are calling for increased lending and the removal of obstacles that are currently making exporting goods time-consuming and expensive. According to the Ministry of Commerce, total trade in Myanmar from April through October reached $13.5 billion, outpacing the $18.3 billion generated from the trade sector in the fiscal year, according to data released by the Ministry of Commerce. The increase comes on the heels of increased foreign investment in Myanmar as well as resonance stemming from potential government and international financing in the trade sector through the new National Export Strategy. Financing for exports is one of the key strategies that we considered putting in the NES [National Export Strategy], which should be completed by April, said U Aung Soe, deputy director general of the Ministry of Commerce s Department of Trade Promotion, adding that it is up to private institutions such as banks to also contribute BILLION aung shin $13.5 Total bilateral trade in Myanmar from April through October. A worker sits on a truckload of apples being imported from China. Photo: Staff financing the burgeoning sector. Export financing is very important, but it cannot be done only by our ministry, U Aung Soe said. Some local banks do lend to exporters, but other obstacles remain, including high interest rates and the expensive cost of money transfers, he said. Of the total trade figure this year, $10.77 billion happened via ocean freights, while the remainder came from cross-border trade on land. Myanmar s main trade partners Thailand, China, India, Singapore, Japan, Korea and Malaysia represented the bulk of the figure. Since the civilian government took office three years ago, exports have increased by about $3.2 billion annually. The trading market is getting bigger, but there is no finance institution yet able to support the export industry, said U Maung Aung, an economic adviser to the Ministry of Commerce. He said that along with the NES, the country needed an import-export bank to offer pre-shipment loans, export credit and insurance loans. We can increase revenue bydeveloping these kinds of banks, he said. He also said that only one out of 3000 exporters was trading more than $100 million worth of goods annually, while about 40pc of all traders handled less than $100,000. As of the end of June, the government and private banks lent K1.93 trillion (about $1.96 billion) to the trading sector in the current financial year, representing only about onethird of total loans, said an official from the Central Bank of Myanmar. U Moe Myint Kyaw, secretary general of the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (UMFCCI), said the current regulations made exporting too expensive for Myanmar traders because they cannot export goods before receiving payment, thus obliging them to maintain overseas bank accounts. This means our exporters have to invest at least three times as much as those of other countries in the region, he said. Nevertheless, the recent reforms have improved the trading climate. An export licence can now be issued in one day instead of four days, and no longer requires a trip to Nay Pyi Taw. Restrictions have been eased, and there is more transparency in customs procedures. But if local banks or the government can lend to exporters, we can enlarge trading volume even more, said garment exporter U Soe Myint.
23 Kyat weakens against the dollar aye thidar kyaw 981 Exchange rate of kyat against the US dollar in local markets. A customer changes kyat for US dollars at money exchanger in Yangon. Photo: Kaung Htet A SURGE in the US dollar, a weak trade balance and the tumbling value of gold, as well as the relative worth of regional currencies, have all contributed to a weaker kyat, which fell 2.66 percent last week against the greenback. As of November 28, the kyat was trading at K981 to the dollar. A week earlier, November 21, a dollar bought K955.5, and on November 14 it was just shy of K950. A Central Bank official said the dollar had risen against many foreign currencies, including the Japanese yen, the Thai baht and the Malaysian ringgit. Gold cost about K665,000 a tical (one tical equals ounces or 24 karat) in Yangon as of November 27, about K10,000 down from last month, reflecting the global trend, though prices at the borders with Thailand and China have remained steady, the official said. Local money changers said demand for the dollar rose last week on speculation by buyers, which pushed the exchange rate up in some areas as high as K985 as of November 27. Experts said the trade deficit helped weaken the kyat, with exports lagging behind imports. The fall of the kyat is starting to take its toll on importers though. Daw Moe Moe Hlaing, manager for a medical equipment company, said relaxed import restrictions had helped them maintain supplies despite a K100 fall in the value of the local currency over the past year. This volatility has not hurt us as much as it did two to three years ago, but we have temporarily stopped importing, she said, following a demand from their bank for a remittance to cover anticipated exchange-rate costs. The Central Bank official said the Bank had a plan to ease the impact of rate changes, but it would be costly, adding, We are considering selling dollars if the rate goes too high, but the banking industry would have to contribute to the cost. THE draft of a new law governing electricity was published on November 18 none too soon, as its precursor, the Electricity Law of 1984, was largely criticised as an inadequate framework for improving the country s power infrastructure. While the draft retains the concept that everything that has to do with power generation, transmission and trade should be a state monopoly, it also allows the authorities to grant licences to private investors to engage in the electricity business. Large projects (those generating over 30MW) are reserved for Union management, whereas mid-sized (10MW to 30MW) and small-scale (up to 10MW) projects are to be implemented by the states, regions, self-administered zones and self-administered divisions with prior approval from the relevant union ministry. The draft explicitly allows foreign participation in large projects, yet It is silent as to whether foreigners may engage in small- and mid-sized electricity businesses. The Fine Print Legal & tax insight The licensing authority for large-scale electricity business is the relevant union ministry. Licences for small- and mid-sized businesses are granted by the government of the respective region or state or the leading body of the respective self-administered zone or division. The draft states that the licence-holder shall, upon expiry of the permitted term, transfer the project to the concerned party in accordance with the agreement or the regulations in place at the time of receiving the licence. Presently, power-plant projects involving private investors are largely realised through BOT structures meaning build-operate-transfer, in which private sector looks after all stages of the process and this wording suggests that this policy will continue into the foreseeable future. The tariff rates for electric power are to be set by the relevant Union ministry with the consent of the Union government. Regional governments have the right to set their own tariff rates for electricity that is under their management and not taken from the national grid. According to the draft, the rates should be sufficiently high to cover investment costs. Business 23 Getting the electricity draft law Sebastian Pawlita Zin Myo Aung The draft, if passed into law, will create an electricity regulatory commission at Union level which will be charged with writing the national electricity policy, recommending specific actions on the basis of a comparison of the national electricity sector with international standards and creating an inspection team to monitor whether the production, import, export, distribution and use of electrical appliances is done in conformity with the norms. The relationship between the inspection team formed by the electricity regulatory commission and the chief inspector and the inspectors appointed by the relevant Union ministry is not entirely clear. The chief inspector and inspectors are also charged with monitoring the safety of electrical appliances. Furthermore, they are to monitor the compliance of licence-holders with rules and regulations. If passed into law, the draft will allow licensing authorities to take administrative actions against non-compliant licenceholders. Wint Thandar Oo is Partner of Polastri Wint & Partners and U Tin Sein is senior associate. A chance for green growth in Myanmar Aye Sapay Phyu WHEN it comes to the environment, Myanmar has the opportunity to learn from others mistakes, environmental experts said last week at the Green Growth and Green Economic Forum in Nay Pyi Taw and Yangon. Myanmar has the chance to do things differently, said the World Wildlife Fund s Greater Mekong representative Stuart Chapman. The government is thinking of different ways towards green growth. Dismissing rapid development as a short-term game, Mr Chapman said, Green growth means being careful about minimising impact on natural capital. The more conservative approach, being careful about building infrastructure, gives long-term opportunities and benefits. He said climate change, which is already affecting Southeast Asia, is another factor that could affect natural capital. Parts of Southeast Asia will get hotter and wetter. It will be more subject to large-scale climatic variation. The approach to energy, security and food security will be hugely different, he said. Daw Lat Lat Aye, UNDP team leader for disaster risk reduction and the environment, said achieving sustainable development depended on the balance between economic, environmental and social systems. The impact of Cyclone Nargis, which left a swathe of death and destruction in 2008, was exacerbated by the loss of natural forest cover and coastal vegetation due to the conversion of the land for paddy cultivation and the over-exploitation of fisheries, she said. The rural population is heavily or partially dependent on forestry because of the lack of other job opportunities. Environmental degradation and the loss of natural protection such as mangroves had brought great suffering, she said. Unsustainable management resource practices reduced community resilience to disaster and set back the goal of sustainable development. Environmental conservation, climate-change adaptation and disaster-risk reduction should be integrated in sustainable development plans, she added. Mr David Vincent, head of the South East Asia Climate Change and Energy network of the British High Commission, said everybody should participate in the green development process because it brings longterm economic, social and environmental benefits for all. The government needs to show very clear leadership and much higher ambition. They need to have a clear vision of what green growth looks like and to make clear plans, he said. You can t have green growth if your energy policy is based on ever-increasing energy supply driven by fossil fuel, particularly coal, which is the most damaging form of fossil fuel, he said, dismissing the idea that green growth hindered economic development. He said an Asian Development Bank study on the economics of climate change in Southeast Asia put the annual cost of unsustainable growth at 7 percent of GDP, above the global average of 3pc. Myanmar is the point where it can make greener decisions now.
24 24 Business THE MYANMAR TIMES December 2-8, 2013 EDITORIAL Which is why more than 500,000 readers choose the two newspapers that have the nation covered 24 hours a day. 7 days a week. 365 days a year. Advertising & Subscription Hotline: myanmartimes.com.mm myanmartimes.com.mm Seizing the moment in Myanmar Ulrich Zachau MYANMAR S economy is doing well. In its recent Myanmar Economic Monitor, the World Bank reports real economic growth rate of 6.5 percent from November 2012 to October 2013, higher than the ASEAN average of 5.6pc. Growth is projected to reach 6.8pc in the fiscal year While rising consumer price inflation to 7.3pc in August 2013 and especially rising food prices are concerns, on balance the people of Myanmar have been benefiting from the transformation to date, and especially from the creation of new jobs in the construction, services and manufacturing industries. Fundamental reforms and a dramatic opening of the economy have underpinned Myanmar s recent strong economic growth. Trade, domestic and foreign investment, and tourism and other services are all expanding rapidly. Further economic opening and reforms, accompanied by growing prospects for mediumterm stability, will foster continued strong growth. Moreover, Myanmar is blessed with natural resources, and, if used wisely, these resources can underpin development. There are encouraging signs that economic reforms are continuing. Having already passed a new Central Bank Law, Anti-Corruption Law, Foreign Investment Law and Telecommunications Law, Myanmar is now revamping the existing mining law and is committed to joining the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI). The government has awarded two telecommunications licences through transparent international bidding, and critical public infrastructure investments are now underway, including in the telecommunications and energy sectors. One example is the recently approved US$140 million World Bank-financed project to replace inefficient old gas turbines at the Thaton power plant with new, more efficient replacements, increasing generation capacity from 40 megawatts to 106MW and providing more homes, schools, hospitals and businesses with reliable access to electricity. While education and health spending remain low by international standards, they have begun rising, together accounting for 11.3pc of the total budget in , up from just below 10pc in ; and the government is setting out to launch education reforms that will help build people s skills and Myanmar s competitiveness. Ultimately it will be the implementation of such reforms, and the investments in infrastructure and in people, that carry the potential to reduce poverty and boost prosperity. Looking ahead, along with maintaining macroeconomic stability, three areas stand out in which strong policies and reform will be required to take full advantage of rich resources, continue rapid growth and reduce poverty. The first is making it easier for employers and investors, local or foreign, to do business in Myanmar. The World Bank s recent Doing Business Survey, which was released in October and included Myanmar for the first time, highlighted many remaining constraints to opening, running and closing a business and employing workers. Among the challenges mentioned are Myanmar s exceptionally high minimum capital requirement of K50 million (about $51,000) for new companies engaged in domestic manufacturing, the highest among all 189 countries included in the survey. The second necessity is prioritising policies that promote equity and inclusion. Agriculture is a source of livelihood for more than 70pc of the population, and many poor live in rural areas. Improving land property rights, efficiency of irrigation systems and extension services will increase investment and productivity in agriculture and reduce rural poverty. Inclusion will also mean promoting equal opportunities for women and for men. Currently women hold only 1pc of positions at the level of director general or above. International experience, documented for example in the World Bank s recent World Development Report on gender, shows that improved opportunities for women bring wide benefits not just to Ulrich Zachau Photo: Supplied women but also to men and to families, helping boost economic growth in the long run. The third challenge is using public resources more effectively, efficiently and transparently. One area identified in the World Bank s recent Public Expenditure and Financial Accountability assessment is the critical need for updated financial management and procurement regulations, strengthened accounting standards, open competition in procurement and the systematic public disclosure of public financial and procurement information so public resources deliver value for money for the people of Myanmar. Two years ago Myanmar began a triple transition: to democratic governance, to peace and to a market-oriented economy. The economic transition faces momentous challenges, but holds even greater promise and opportunities. Continued fundamental reforms, sustained with patience and commitment by all, hold the key to ensuring Myanmar s triple transition reduces poverty and tangibly improves the lives of people throughout the country. Ulrich Zachau is the country director for South East Asia at the World Bank. Based in Bangkok, he covers all World Bank programs and operations in Cambodia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar and Thailand. New Vacancies APPLY NOW! Business Development manager Marketing manager Sales and distribution manager Brand manager Logistic officer Medical doctor Project manager Sales engineer Site engineer Chief Accountant Accountant HR Manager HR Executive Legal executive Secretary Passenger service agent ( airline) Receptionist Customer service No. 851/853 (A/B), 3rd Floor, Room (7/8), Bogyoke Aung San Road, Lanmadaw Township, Yangon, Myanmar. Tel: (951) , , Sydney Australia blocks US buyout of GrainCorp THE Australian government rejected on November 29 the US$2.7 billion sale of Grain- Corp to American agribusiness giant Archer Daniels Midland (ADM), saying it went against the national interest. Australia s Treasurer Joe Hockey said the sector was still moving toward more robust competition and that a foreign takeover of the biggest grain handler in eastern Australia could undermine public support for foreign investment in general. Now is not the right time for a 100-percent foreign acquisition of this key Australian business, he said, a decision which sent GrainCorp shares diving 22 percent to $7.93 at their close on November 29. The bid met strong opposition from grower groups and the National Party, which is part of the governing coalition that declared Australia open for business after winning September elections. A further significant consideration was that this proposal has attracted a high level of concern from stakeholders and the broader community, Mr Hockey said in a statement. I therefore judged that allowing it to proceed could risk undermining public support for the foreign investment regime and ongoing foreign investment more generally. This would not be in our national interest. The treasurer said the Foreign Investment Review Board assessing the proposal had been split on whether to green-light the takeover, which was one of the most significant proposed acquisitions of an agricultural business in Australia s history. MILLION $ Archer Daniels Midland s most recent pledge to develop new infrastructure 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. Assistant to Fund Director (LICA 4) Yangon National 4 Dec Human Resources Associate Yangon National 5 Dec 13 (GS6 or Equivalent ICA level) The benefit package for the above positions includes an attractive remuneration, 30 days annual leave and 10 holidays per year, medical insurance (for national positions), learning and development opportunities and a challenging working environment with 250 national and international colleagues. All applications must be made through the UNOPS E-recruitment System ( and click on the post you are interested in applying for. If you have further queries, please contact Ext: 149 But he had ultimately decided that Australia s grains export industry was still working through a significant deregulation process, which started in 2008 with the abolition of the single desk for wheat exports. ADM owns more than 280 storage sites and seven of the 10 grain port terminals in New South Wales, Queensland and Victoria. Around 85pc of eastern Australia s bulk grain exports are handled through its ports network. Mr Hockey said growers had expressed concern that the proposed acquisition would reduce competition and impede their ability to access grain storage, logistics and distribution networks. ADM voiced disappointment at the decision to reject its proposal, a bid it had sweetened in recent days with an increased $ million spending on infrastructure. [Last week s] events will have enduring implications that will be felt not only by our shareholders but by the entire industry, GrainCorp chairman Don Taylor said in a statement. AFP IN BRIEF Frankfurt Solarworld buys Bosch s photovoltaic ops in Germany German photovoltaic firm SolarWorld said last week it has signed an agreement to buy parts of Robert Bosch GmbH s solar energy business. Under the terms of the deal, SolarWorld will take over cell production capacity of 700 megawatts as well as module production capacity of 200 megawatts from Bosch Solar Energy in Arnstadt in eastern Germany, the company said in a statement. AFP
25 Singapore Singapore Airlines halts the world s longest flight THE world s longest nonstop commercial flight ended without fanfare Monday after Singapore Airlines (SIA) flew its last nearly 19-hour service from New York. Flight SQ 21 landed early November 25 in Changi Airport, bringing an end to a nine-year run. A direct service to Los Angeles has also been cancelled as part of a fleet renewal. Food and refreshments were served to customers at the airport gate hold rooms in Singapore and Newark. Customers were also presented with commemorative gift sets and certificates, an SIA spokesman added. Analysts said the rise in fuel prices since 2004, when the mile (15,335-kilometre) service was KILOMETRES 15,335 Distance flown by Singapore Airlines between New York and Singapore, the world s longest flight launched to cater to business travellers, made it economically unsustainable. The cancellation of the service was first announced a year ago. Five Airbus A s used by SIA for the service to New York through neighbouring Newark are being swapped for Airbus A380 super-jumbos, a larger but more fuel-efficient model that is not designed for such distances. The 100-seat, all business-class service to New York was pricey but passengers flew in comfort and saved hours of travel time by not having to make stopovers. A Singapore travel agency said the last list price for the New York direct service was S$14,000 (US$11,180). Ultra long-range routes have proven to be uneconomical, making it unlikely there will be a return of flights over 17 hours, which can only be flown by the niche A or [Boeing] LR, the Sydney-based Centre for Aviation said in a commentary in September. Following the withdrawal of the two direct US services by SIA, three routes will share the distinction of being the longest in terms of duration Dubai- Houston, Dubai-Los Angeles and Johannesburg-Atlanta at 16 hours and 20 minutes, the centre said. AFP ITALY and Russia unveiled a 1 billion euro (US$1.4-billion) joint investment fund last week as President Vladimir Putin met with Prime Minister Enrico Letta in Italy to discuss boosting business ties. Mr Letta said 28 agreements had been signed including a landmark deal to ease customs procedures for Italian businesses exporting to Russia and one to establish a branch of Russia s Hermitage Museum in Venice. The 1 billion euros will help joint ventures and stimulate growth in our two countries, Mr Letta said at a press conference, while Mr Putin added that economic cooperation had been at the centre of our agenda. Italy has to develop its international market and encourage more direct investments, Mr Letta said after the talks in Trieste in northeast Italy. Italian officials had said ahead of the talks that they would test Russian interest in investing in debt-laden flag carrier Alitalia, which is looking for a foreign partner, and Ilva, a troubled giant steel plant. Italian media said energy giants Eni and Enel at the talks would also be looking to lower the prices for imports from Russia, as Italians struggle to make ends meet amid the country s longest post-war recession. Business 25 Trieste Russia and Italy unveil new investment fund Italian Prime Minister Enrico Letta and Russian President Vladimir Putin shake hands prior their meeting on November 25 in Trieste. Photo: AFP Among the deals signed was one for Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri to develop a drill ship for Russia s offshore oil industry and build a floating platform to carry nuclear submarine reactor compartments. AFP Tokyo Panasonic to sell chip plants Troubled company attempts to rebound after two years of record losses JAPAN S Panasonic is nearing a deal to sell three domestic semiconductor plants to an Israeli company as it presses ahead with a move to cut money-losing operations, a report said last week. The electronics giant s shares jumped 3.9pc to 1172 yen in afternoon Tokyo trade after the Nikkei business daily said it would sell majority stakes in the three factories to chipmaker TowerJazz on November 26. The deal s price tag would be determined later, it added. Most of the plants 2500 workers will stay on after the agreement, with other members of staff transferred to different divisions within Panasonic, the Nikkei said. The deal could reportedly be finalised in the fiscal year to March Panasonic is also in talks to sell full or partial stakes in overseas chip-assembly plants to a Singaporean company, including factories in China, Indonesia and Malaysia, the leading Japanese business daily said. The tie-up with Nasdaq-listed TowerJazz would provide Panasonic with fresh capital while expanding the plants customer base and boosting production, the Nikkei said. In response, Panasonic said We are making various studies on our semiconductor business strategy but nothing has been decided at the moment. Panasonic is undergoing a huge restructuring aimed at repairing its balance sheet after two consecutive years of record losses. AFP
26 26 THE MYANMAR TIMES december 2-8, 2013 Property BUSINESS editor: Philip Heijmans Harbour high-rises left high and dry YCDC and the Myanmar Port Authority are clashing on whether Yangon s waterfront should be developed for community or commercial use Myat Nyein Aye PLANS for a towering office and hotel complex in Yangon s Pansodan Port have been shelved in the face of opposition from the city s development committee even though the project has already been put out to tender by the Myanma Port Authority, officials said. The development of Yangon s ports has been in the works since September 2012, when the Yangon City Development Committee (YCDC) and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) drew up the Greater Yangon Project. That initiative, however, appears as if it may have been in conflict with another long-term development scheme, the MPA s Port Master Plan, which envisaged the upgrading of Lanmadaw, Sule, Pansodan and Botahtaung ports. Senior officials from both sides ministers for Yangon Region, the Ministry of Transport, the Myanma Port Authority under the transport ministry and YCDC have been meeting to try to resolve the matter. We planned to build a high-rise office tower, shopping mall and so on at Pansodan Port, MPA general manager U Kyaw Myint told The Myanmar Times. The plan entailed a 20-floor office block, a 16-storey hotel, a four-storey shopping mall and a three-storey cruise and ferry terminal. Inviting local and foreign investment in the Yangon Port Area, the MPA also plans to upgrade the Botahtaung Port Area by extending the shore 100 acres and building a resort and shopping area. Four floating hotels are also planned for the area, with one rented by Hla Hla Pa Pa company. Another area has been given over to domestic shipping and those remaining will continue to attract bids. In Sule Port Area, multi-berth harbours are planned for the unloading of container ships, while in Lanmadaw Port Area, high-rise office buildings will overlook international-standard domestic jetties, though MPA hasn t yet opened this area for tender. The YCDC, however, has put its foot down on the Pansodan plans, saying the Greater Yangon Project calls for more green space along the city s waterfront. The Pansodan Port Area should be for public recreation, not commercial use, said U Kyaw Soe, secretary of the YCDC. We can allow nothing higher than two floors. The high-rise and commercial buildings have to go in other ports. As MPA put out the tender for construction rights in September 2012, and a company has already been selected for the development, MPA s U Kyaw Myint said they will have to discuss the implications of YCDC s decision with the bid winners, New Downtown. He also added that MPA isn t ready to scrap the whole agreement just yet. We want to know exactly why the YCDC objected to the plan, because now we have to negotiate with the company. There may be a chance to put high-rises somewhere else in that area, he said. At a press conference relating to the Port Master Plan on November 25, YCDC said it would make a full official announcement of its objections to the Pansodan area high-rise to the MPA and New Downtown. The Port Master Plan was announced by the government in 2012 for implementation by the transportation ministry, parent ministry of the MPA. The Port of Yangon handles about 70 percent of the country s overseas trade. While upgrading and extending it will have repercussions for development, some experts believe not making improvements could stunt the country s economic growth. A ferry passes through waters near Bo Aung Kyaw Wharf in downtown Yangon. Much of the city s waterfront area is slated for development, though it remains uncertain when or by whom. Photo: Staff Unless Myanmar is properly connected to international trading routes, the impressive reforms undertaken [recently] will be less effective and less meaningful than they should be, according to an analysis of the port last month by consultancy and publishing firm Oxford Business Group. According to the report, boats are often delayed from berthing at the port due to poor infrastructure and often have to berth at less than full capacity, while machinery and equipment, where they exist, are often obsolete. But other challenges remain as well. Cargo handling is still manual and paperwork is still processed the old- fashioned way three copies of the same documentation must be brought to three separate offices by a shipper, the report states. There is no single window and no electronic reporting; Bills of Lading cannot be accessed via the Internet and tracking is done by hand, making it difficult to know the precise location of containers [which sometimes go missing]. The situation is such that unless international players are granted relatively unrestricted rights to participate in the market, the maritime investments that need to be made will probably not happen in the right way and on the proper scale, it continues. Some, however, take a different view. U Kyan Tine Aung, spokesperson for the conservation group Yangon Heritage Trust, sided with YCDC, saying Pansodan s heritage buildings will be blocked if high-rise buildings are allowed in the area and this would hurt the country s development. There should be areas like People s Park and the convention hall, not high-rises, he said. Other countries use waterfronts as green areas for the public. Foreigners are very interested in heritage buildings in our country, and that s why maintaining the heritage area can help the tourism sector. Additional reporting by Philip Heijmans HOUSE OF THE WEEK Infrastructure exhibition brings in top global firms One for the ages THIS week features a second-floor flat in the quiet precincts of Kabar Aye Villa Housing, not too close to downtown. The spacious interior (2200 sq ft) is well decorated, featuring three bedrooms, one double, two single. Parquet floors and white walls accentuate this home, which will require some furnishing. Residents will enjoy four air conditioners, car-parking, reliable power and 24- hour security. Ei The The Naing Location : Kabar Aye Villa Housing, mayangone township Price : K3.2 million (for rent) Contact : Estate Myanmar Phone : , Tin Yadanar Htun OVER 250 development and construction firms from 22 countries rolled out their wares last week in Yangon s Tatmadaw Hall for the infrastructure exhibition Myanmar Infrastructure 13. Boasting three exhibitions, including an international building and construction materials and equipment expo, a power and electrical The staging of this event is to support development by bringing in technology suppliers. Michelle Ha Project Director, AMB Events Group engineering expo and an international water supply and wastewater treatment expo, Myanmar got a look into products from such firms as Saudi Arabian-listed Zamil Steel, Singaporean manufacturer Keystone Cable, Japan-based manufacturer Olympus, New York Stock Exchangelisted Cummins and Japanese multinational engineering and electronics conglomerate Toshiba. The staging of this event is to support development by bringing in technology suppliers to share expertise and create partnerships and joint ventures in building capacity, said Michelle Ha, project director of AMB Events Group, who put on the exhibition. The exhibition s director, U Thagwe Khant Soe, said 80 percent of the companies in attendance were foreign, with many coming from such regional trading partners as China, India, Thailand and Malaysia. The exhibition also featured three free seminars, covering the latest developments in water management, building and construction, and power and electricity.
27 Quote of the week Unless Myanmar is properly connected to international trading routes, the impressive reforms undertaken [recently] will be less effective. Oxford Business Group EU-Russia stand-off dominates summit World Life of an expat realtor Bridget Di Certo DAVID Ney is wearing Hawaiian print boardshorts. He s standing in the corner amid the haphazard piles of guests shoes at a dark and crowded party in an apartment on Yaw Min Gyi Street. His black frame glasses are perched on his nose and he is smiling. It s a crooked smile that could also pass for an expression more startled than gleeful, but that s what you get when you ask a team of papier-mâché artists to make a miniature version of yourself. Officially there are 12, Mr Ney, an American Myanmar-language student-cum-realtor, said of the three-foot effigies that dot apartments around Yangon s Yaw Min Gyi area. They were all sold before they were even made. The papier-mâché mini-neys mostly occupy the living rooms of friends. One was purchased by an art gallery and another by a Yaw Min Gyi bank branch to bring good luck. They offer a small glimpse into how Mr Ney has become a staple in Yangon as one of the top expat-servicing realtors around. I became fascinated with the country because of the friends I had at univesity in Bangkok, he said. Upon arriving in Yangon four years ago from Thailand to pursue a position as an English teacher at an international school, Mr Ney set about the very, very arduous process of finding a place to live, which is what brought him to the doorstep of Auntie Boke and her husband, Uncle, who were running a small real-estate business out of their family home on Yaw Min Gyi Street. Not only were they able to get me set up, but they were able to go above and beyond what any other agent was doing. I felt very welcome and loved, almost, just finding my place, Mr Ney said, speaking from his now habitual roost on the couch of the York Road Realty office, a family business that has adopted him as one of their own. Intermittently fact-checking in Myanmar language with Auntie and Uncle, Mr Ney recounted how he came to shoot from his hometown Seattle to land in the Yangon real estate sector. I was really interested in learning the language but at that point it was difficult to get language teachers. So the way I learned has been how a two-year-old learns a language, by listening. Before York Road Realty in its current manifestation existed, the office doubled as a phone shop where the newly arrived Mr Ney would perch on the couch intently eavesdropping. I had the benefit of being able to sit on this couch every day and listen to these one-sided conversations in multiple accents every day and learn idiosyncratic details and apply [the language] in a daily situation with Auntie and Uncle and their whole family, Mr Ney said. Mr Ney began referring people to Auntie and Uncle for help with finding accommodation and the referrals kept coming and multiplying until York Road Realty became a full-time entity. Back then [pre-2010] prices were cheap, but it was harder to rent because the process for registration was a lot more difficult and a lot of areas were flat-out unwilling to rent to someone carrying a non- Myanmar identification, he said. I enjoy [realty], I like going out and helping people, the skill set has developed over time and I have had very good teachers, Mr Ney said. I hope we can influence rates and terms of rental agreements. I think the fact that landlords know we work with an international clientele gives us more of an impact on the future of Myanmar renting policy, Mr Ney said. David Ney poses with an effigy of himself at his office in Dagon Township, Yangon. Photo: Bridget Di Certo
28 28 Property THE MYANMAR TIMES December 2-8, 2013 IN BRIEF Washington Home price gains in US slow for month of September, report says US home prices rose modestly in September, continuing a slowdown from growth earlier in the year as the housing market slowly recovers, according to a report released last week. The S&P Case-Shiller 20-city composite home price index rose 0.7 percent in September from August, and was up 13.3pc from September 2012, the highest annual growth since February The year-over-year growth in September was slightly better than the 13pc average estimate. In August, prices increased 12.8pc on an annual basis. Nineteen cities decelerated monthover-month from August to September; Charlotte, North Carolina, was the only city to see a price decline. Washington US building permits surge to 5-year high in October US home building permits surged in October to the highest level in five years, suggesting stronger momentum ahead in the recovering housing market, government data released last week showed. Building permits, a signal of potential residential construction growth, rose to an annual rate of million in October, up 6.2 percent from September s 974,000, the Commerce Department said. The growth in building permits over the past two months was well above analysts average estimate of 932,000 per month. It was the fastest pace of building permits issued since June AFP IN PICTUREs Tourists visit an under-construction statue of Mao Zedong in Changsha, central China s Hunan province, China, ahead of the 120 th anniversary of Mao s birth, which China will celebrate on December 26. Chinese President Xi Jinping is calling for restraint ahead of the 120th anniversary. Photo: AFP Tokyo Japan shrinks too big 2020 Olympics stadium SPORTS officials in Japan last week bowed to growing criticism that a massive stadium planned for the 2020 Olympics was too big and costly, saying they would shrink the building s area. The proposed stadium, designed by London-based Iraqi architect Zaha Hadid, is intended to occupy a spot in west Tokyo currently occupied by the national stadium, an area with numerous parks and a large Shinto shrine. The new 230-foot (70-metre) architectural centerpiece a futuristic, bike-helmet-shaped stadium has drawn criticism that it would tower over other structures in the area, which are limited to a 15-metre height restriction, and would be visible all Jerusalem AUTHORITIES in Israel have given the go-ahead for the construction of 829 new settler homes in the occupied West Bank, settlement watchdog Peace Now said last week. The construction of 829 homes has been approved by a committee of the Israeli military in charge of the West Bank, said spokesman Lior Amihai. This is yet another move that threatens to derail the peace process, he told AFP. Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas has warned that ongoing settlement building by Israel in the Palestinian territories threatens the future of Middle East peace talks, which are at an impasse little more than three months after they began. over the Japanese capital. Last week, the Japan Sport Council (JSC), which is in charge of running the current and future stadium, announced it would scale back the floor space by one-quarter to 220,000 square metres. That would cut construction costs to about 180 billion yen (US$1.8 billion), Japanese media reported, well down from 300 billion yen for the bigger building. Officials did not release a revised cost estimate. While we are still using Zaha Hadid s design, we now plan to downsize it, a JSC official told an expert panel which approved the new blueprint. The reportedly slimmed-down cost A statement from Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erakat condemned what he called the Israeli government s constant policy of destroying the two-state solution. He said that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was undermining the peacemaking efforts of US Secretary of State John Kerry, revealing that [Mr Netanyahu s] sole intention is to consolidate an apartheid regime rather than to achieve a just and durable peace. The new homes are to be built north of Jerusalem, in the settlements of Givat Zeev, Nofei Prat, Shilo, Givat Salit and Nokdim, Mr Amihai said. The latest move comes two weeks after Israel announced its largest plan for settler homes ever, saying some 20,000 is still nearly 40 percent above the government s initial estimates for a new stadium. Officials said the building would meet International Olympic Committee conditions including seats for 80,000 spectators, a retractable roof and movable seats to adjust their configuration for different sporting events. The height estimates would remain unchanged. That would make the stadium visible from all over the west of Tokyo, including from the immaculately kept National Shinjuku Gyoen Park, a green lung tucked underneath the skyscrapers of Shinjuku. AFP Israel okays new homes in West Bank would be built in the West Bank. Mr Netanyahu cancelled the order after pressure from the United States, which brought the two sides to the table in July, and as he sought to dissuade Washington from striking a nuclear deal with Iran. That announcement prompted the entire Palestinian negotiating team to resign in protest resignations which Mr Abbas has yet to accept. Israeli daily Yediot Aharonot said that having failed to prevent what he called a very bad international agreement on Iran s nuclear program, the only card left for Mr Netanyahu to play in influencing US diplomacy is progress, or the lack of it, in talks with the Palestinians. AFP Shanghai China property firms deny tax-shirking report SEVERAL Chinese property developers last week denied a state media report accusing them of failing to pay land taxes, saying it was a misunderstanding. State television reported in a weekly consumer program earlier this month that domestic property firms owed 3.8 trillion yuan (US$623 billion) in land taxes from 2005 to 2012, citing a lawyer s calculations. China Central Television (CCTV) did not give a total for the number of firms included in that tally, but said it included 45 listed Chinese property developers, traded both domestically and overseas. At least 14 companies have denied the allegations in statements filed through their listing exchanges or posted online. Vanke, China s largest homebuilder by sales, said it had fulfilled its obligations for tax payments according to the law. The financial statements of The financial statements of the company fairly reflected its financial conditions and operating results, and the company does not owe land taxes, Wang Shi Chairman at Vanke the company fairly reflected its financial conditions and operating results, and the company does not owe land taxes, Vanke chairman Wang Shi wrote on his microblog. Another accused firm, Huayuan Property, also defended itself. The way of speaking in the report about the company owing land taxes derived from a misunderstanding, Huayuan said. The report had a negative impact on the company and its investors. Huayuan closed down 0.37 percent in Shanghai trading on Tuesday, while Vanke dropped 0.81pc on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange. In China developers must pay tax on the increase in value of their land holdings when they sell properties on the land or transfer the land lease itself. A portion of the tax is typically pre-paid to the government while the rest is settled at a later date under certain conditions, meaning developers do not have immediate payment obligations, industry representatives said. Huayuan chairman Ren Zhiqiang earlier threatened to sue CCTV, charging that the report showed the state broadcaster s stupidity and ignorance. But the CCTV report sparked an outcry on the internet, with some users condemning real estate developers for greed while at the same time blaming them for unaffordable housing. High property prices are a major source of discontent among Chinese citizens, and authorities have sought to control their rise while at the same time pledging to provide low-cost housing. AFP
29 Technology 29 The roots of Myanmar s internet woes Naomi Gingold somebody s digging for roads or for water or for sewer or for agriculture, any number of things, you re at risk of cutting a cable. Steven Huter Network Startup Resource Center IN the early hours of August 5, Myanmar completely disappeared from the worldwide internet. The total outage followed a series of problems with the power supply to the terrestrial internet cables that disrupted the connection to the country s subsea link on and off for two weeks and caused the country s normally slow internet service to grind almost to a halt. When smaller outages continued throughout the fall, many of the country s beleaguered netizens began to seriously ask: Why does Myanmar s internet seem to break so much? People often imagine the internet as a giant wireless cloud, when in reality it consists of the same thing electric telecommunications infrastructure has been comprised of for 150 years: long, physical wires laid out around the world that burrow under the ocean, stringing continent to continent. In general, the more diverse connections a country has to the worldwide network, the more stable or robust the internet is. Myanmar currently has two main connections to the worldwide network: one dry cross-border cable to Thailand and one wet or submarine cable known as SEA-ME-WE 3. There is a small capacity Internet link to China that was briefly operational again in late October, but it has been mostly out of order because of heavy rains, planned upgrades, and routing issues. If one is reliant on only three connections (unlike, say, the 10 submarine cables in New York City area alone), the loss of one important link can mean mayhem on the network. When the connection to SEA-ME-WE 3 first broke in late July, Myanmar s Internet was down to 20-percent capacity. Some people in the country could still connect, but just barely. Outages and breaks on terrestrial internet cables are surprisingly common, even in countries with more robust networks. Steven Huter of the Network Startup Resource Center (NSRC), an organisation that works to beef up educational networks in developing countries, says that whenever somebody s digging for roads or for water or for sewer or for agriculture, any number of things, you re at risk of cutting a cable. Submarine cables are less susceptible, but a subsea earthquake shifting rocks or an anchor docked in a rough storm can easily slice through one. Subsea cable breaks typically take 3-6 weeks to fix, as ships first have to find both ends of the severed cable before it can be fused back together. One of the main factors dragging down the Myanmar internet is that there is simply not enough capacity or bandwidth on the domestic network and international connections to support the amount of people going online. Doug Madory, with Renesys, says that unmet capacity for increased demand is causing the extreme latencies, ie slowness, that Internet users in Burma feel, especially during the late afternoon, peak use time. Conspiracy theories about Myanmar s stumbling internet abound, from suspicion over why problems seem to occur every year near the anniversary of the massive democracy protests to claims that the government deliberately slows the internet down (but will juice a connection for the proper kickback). U Myo Swe, Chief Engineer of the IT Department at Myanmar Post and Telecommunications (MPT), the body that oversees the construction, functioning, and regulation of the Internet in Myanmar, recently denied such allegations. Current internet penetration rates stand at a paltry 1 pc (though some argue that this doesn t fully account for the number of usersat Internet cafes). The most common Internet connection is ADSL, slow but cheap to install because it runs on the widest spread telecommunications infrastructure in the country, the fixed telephone line. But only about 1 pc of the country has one. Compounding the problem is the incredibly high cost for access and the incredibly low international bandwidth, 900 times less than neighboring Singapore and the lowest in the region. (Bandwidth describes the capacity to upload and download information over a period of time.) Citizens who are able to go online have an incredibly small capacity to download and upload information. The country s primitive domestic telecommunications infrastructure goes hand in hand with the sparse international infrastructure to contribute to the problems plaguing the Myanmar Internet. In a recent report, Terabit Consulting called the low international bandwidth and underdeveloped telecommunication space a major obstacle to economic development. According to Abu Saeed Khan, a senior policy fellow at the regional information and communication Sea-Me-We 3 Submarine Cable Morah Tamu Mandalay Naypyitaw Yangon Myawaddy Pyapon Maeshaut technology think tank LIRNasia, Myanmar was excluded from the submarine cable SEA-ME-WE 4 that links Bangladesh to the worldwide internet, because the former military junta was delinquent in paying its share for SEA- ME-WE-3. The MPT is now playing catch-up. In October, the MPT more than doubled the bandwidth on the crossborder fiber link to Thailand, saying the new capacity will be functional by the start of the 2013 Southeast Asia Games (SEA Games) that Myanmar is hosting in December. They recently announced plans to bring another submarine cable into the country, SEA-ME-WE 5, (whose projected landing in the beach town of Ngwe Saung would diversify the landing stations in the country and make the network more robust.) Rumors are also floating around cyberspace that the MPT will be joining the consortium to fund the Asia- Africa-Europe 1 (AAE-1) cable, but as of yet details about it remain speculative. When asked, the MPT said simply, We are not yet decided. Neither cable would be up and functional beforelate 2015, if not More than one consultant in the industry, skeptical about both AAE- 1 and SEA-ME-WE-5, suggested that Myanmar would be better off joining a private cable, such as the Bay of Bengal Gateway system that is projected to be operational by the end of In June the MPT presented at an Muse Tachilate Maesai Ruli Bangkok Satun Wanpon Laos Vientiane Thailand Vietnam Cambodia International Telecommunications Union conferenceabout the potential launch of its own satellite for Internet. Saeed Khan of LIRNasia is not alone in suggesting that Myanmar should instead focus on expanding its crossborder fiber networks to Thailand and Bangladesh. But increased international capacity won t amount to much if the domestic network can t handle it. The MPT is currently working toexpand intra-city fiber networks, and Japan has taken the lead in doubling the fiber backbone between Myanmar s three largest cities. Working with the MPT, they are also boosting the internet s international routing capabilities in time for the SEA Games, as well as adding a temporary 4G network. Spokespeople for NTT Communicationssaid that internet users in the country should feel an uptick in speed and reliability by the 2013 SEA Games. Getting a Google Global Cache or working with a Content Delivery Network to host popular content locally could also increase local speeds. With a Google Global Cache (GGC) a popular YouTube video (or website for a CDN) would be downloaded once and stored locally for further viewing, putting less strain on the country s limited international bandwidth. The MPT s Myo Swe says they are speaking with several companies, but Google [would] have to propose [it]. In June Norway s Telenor and Qatar s Ooredoo became the first international companies awarded licences to provide mobile services in Myanmar. Saeed Khan from LIRNasia thinks the government should continue liberalizing the market and establish an independent regulator who will oversee the functionality of the private sector. Earlier this year, the MPT did announcethat they would privatize and set up shop as public corporation in partnership with an international telecommunications company (although the MPT won t confirm which companies are in the running). Whether the market will become a truly level playing field, only time will tell. Many see mobile as a quick salve to the country s connectivity woes. Doug Madory of Renesys points out that, As a last-mile technology, mobile services are far easier to deploy and maintain than running lines to every business and apartment. But ultimately, whatever the last mile technology used to connect to the internet may be, both mobile and fixed broadband internet users are still reliant on the underlying international links connecting Myanmar to the worldwide Internet. More mobile users simply means more people will be logging onto a network that is alreadyseverely over capacity, unless, the new mobile companies are also increasing the long-haul fiber connections. According to one consultant at the September Myanmar Connect 2013 conference, Telenor is almost done with a terrestrial link connecting Myanmar to Bangladesh. When reached for confirmation, the company only responded by to say that, although they were evaluating options for international fiber expansion, It is not possible at this time to confirm which links will be established. At a recent business incubator launch in Yangon, optimism about doing business in the country, despite the known internet issues, was running high, even amidst a citywide power outage thatleft attendees with no AC or Internet. Saeed Khan says the country should look at what its neighbors have done in the telecommunications markets and learn from everybody s mistakes. Although essentially starting from scratch, he says the country is positioned well. For Myanmar, he said, The sky is the limit. Namoi Gingold is a freelance reporter based in Yangon Telecos ramp up their offerings ahead of SEA games aung kyaw nyunt THE nation s telecom companies are gearing up a wide range of new services for the upcoming Southeast Asian games. For starters, a new app allows sports fans to stay up to date using their mobile phones. The SEA Games Official Mobile Application, a companion app to the official SEA Games website, works on both Apple s IOS and Google s Android operating systems, according to U Myo Myint Nyunt from Redlink s sales and marketing, and can be downloaded from both the Apple Store and Google Play. Users will be able to view schedules, results, photos, songs and videos, and other information related to the games. The SEA Games website, at www. 27seagames2013.com, went live in July, with the mobile application following at the end of October. Foreigners will be able to buy cheap SIM cards with kyats during the Games, said U Aung Kyaw Thet of Myanma Posts and Telecommunication s online billing system. The cards will be limited to one month s use. Additionally, Redlink announced on November 16 via the official Games website that it will offer complimentary Wi-FI service to spectators at six competition venues. According to U Myo Myint at the company s sales and marketing department, Redlink is planning on handling traffic from 2400 people logging on at Thein Phyu Stadium; 500 people at North Dagon Shooting Range; 2000 at the Myanmar Convention Center; 32,000 at Thuwuna Stadium; 10,000 at Thuwunna Indoor Stadium; and 500 at Ngwe Saung Beach. Following periods of offering free calls to Malaysia in June, July and August, VMG Telecoms has announced it will offer free overseas calling to any destination for participants atthe Games. From December 11 to 22, VMG will run call centres using the Ytalk application for online calling at various Games-related venues such as hotels and stadiums. It s a way to help visiting athletes stay in touch with their families, said company director U Khan Aung. International athletes, coaches and referees can all benefit from the unlimited calls, but U Aung Min Thein, the company s general manager, added that the service isn t for public use. If athletes want to call overseas, they must show their player cards. A rescued tigress crosses the Sundarikati river after being released by forest workers at Sunderbans, some 150 km south of Kolkata. India is planning a new sanctuary for its tigers in the world s largest mangrove forest after a previously unknown group of the IN PICTUREs endangered animals were discovered in November Photo: AFP
30 30 THE MYANMAR TIMES December 2-8, 2013 World World editor: Bridget Di Certo VILNIUS EU-Russia stand-off dominates summit AN EU summit to cap years of effort to bring ex-soviet states into the Western fold opened with its ambitions dented on November 28 after Ukraine, the biggest prize, balked at the last moment under Russian pressure. Kiev s surprise decision to scrap a landmark political and trade accord with the European Union just days before has set off a war of words between East and West reminiscent of the Cold War and sparked some of the biggest protests in Ukraine in a decade. Brussels insists the deal is still on the table despite the rebuff and Kiev says it could even still sign it, but the prospects for compromise at the two-day summit appear limited, with the fate of detained former Ukraine premier Yulia Tymoshenko a major sticking point. Ms Tymoshenko herself meanwhile called on EU leaders to drop their demands for her release if President Viktor Yanukovych, who is due to attend, takes a positive decision on the accord. A woman holds a portrait of jailed former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko during a rally of the pro-european movement in central Kiev, on November 27. Photo: AFP I passionately ask you to sign the agreement on November 29 without any hesitation and conditions including those that are related to my release, Ms Tymoshenko said in a message. It s necessary to free Ukraine. That means it s necessary to sign the agreement if Yanukovych agrees to it, she said. Ms Tymoshenko s release which some EU critics think was a step too far for Kiev is part of a set of conditions sought by the EU in return for an Association Agreement which could lead ultimately to Ukraine s EU membership. Keen to show Moscow s former communist satellites in Eastern Europe that the summit matters, almost all EU leaders will attend, including the Big Three of Britain, France and Germany. The accent is on the future, they argue, rather than the past. We should overcome the mentality either us or them. The Cold War is over, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said, admonishing Russian President Vladimir Putin to look at the wider picture. Mr Putin has in turn advised our friends in Brussels, my personal good friends in the European Commission, to hold back on the sharp words. The Eastern Partnership summit also includes Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova and Belarus, aims to strike trade and aid deals with the EU, but vast Ukraine, with its 45 million people, industry and farms, is the major prize. To make matters worse, Brussels has also seen Armenia, Azerbaijan and Belarus turn back toward a Moscow which has reminded all of how much they stand to lose if they make the wrong choice. Only Moldova and Georgia which fought a 2008 war with Russia are now ready to sign up with the EU and even Tbilisi after a change of government no longer seems so hostile to Moscow. EU Enlargement Commissioner Stefan Fuele said, Failure sign the association agreement will delay investment and economic modernisation in Ukraine, adding Brussels is ready to resume talks on signing as soon as Ukraine is ready. AFP IN PICTUREs A Palestinian demonstrater throws a demonstration on November 27. Israeli Hebron, the Shin Bet internal security SYDNEY Australian surf deadlier than bushfires, sharks THE Australian surf kills more people than bushfires, cyclones, floods and sharks combined, according to a study released on November 27 which found rip currents were far more likely to be deadly than other natural hazards. Australia is known for its destructive summer wildfires, storms and dangerous predators such as sharks which are common in its waters, but researchers at the University of New South Wales said there was an unheralded killer in the sea. Rips account for greater overall loss of human life than other high profile natural hazards, said the lead author of the study, coastal geomorphologist Rob Brander. Yet they do not get anywhere near as much attention and dedicated funding. The study, published in the Europebased journal Natural Hazards and Earth Science Systems, found that rip currents caused an average of 21 confirmed human fatalities per year. This compared with 7.5 deaths for cyclones, 5.9 for bushfires, 4.3 for floods and one for sharks, producing a combined total of less than 19. Rips are strong, narrow currents which pull swimmers away from the beach and can easily carry them well offshore, causing them to become panicked and exhausted a state in which they can drown. The study analysed data from Australia s National Coronial Information System and found an average of 21 confirmed deaths involving Large waves crashing into the Bondi Baths and Icebergs Club at Sydney s famous Bondi Beach. Photo: AFP rips per year for the period of 2004 to And this is likely to be an underestimate because there has to be a witness to an event who saw the person was caught in a rip, and then this information has to be included in the coronial report, said Mr Brander. Researchers then used information from the Australian Emergency Management Institute s National Disaster Database to identify the average number of deaths per year caused by tropical cyclones, bushfires and floods since the mid-to-late 1800s. The Australian Shark Attack File administered by Taronga Zoo in Sydney shows there has been an average of one death a year since Mr Brander said while the rip data was only available for a shorter time frame, he was confident it was still the biggest hazard because many deaths caused by the currents were not officially recorded as such. Other types of hazards, like bushfires, have the capacity to claim large numbers of lives in a single event, said Mr Brander. On the other hand, rip currents are almost always present and rarely result in more than one death at a time. But in the end, more people die as a result of them. Australia is famed for its 11,000 mainland beaches. An estimated 17,500 rip currents operate around the coast at any given time, the study said. AFP PARIS New target seen in ongoing war on malaria SCIENTISTS on November 27 said they had identified a new target in the parasite that causes malaria, a disease that causes more than a half a million deaths annually. Potential drugs can aim at a newly discovered enzyme that the parasite uses to metabolise energy at every stage of its infection in humans, they said. Inhibitors of this drug target have the potential to not only cure individuals of a malaria infection, but... even block transmission. Case McNamara Novartis Research Foundation The finding, published in the journal Nature, is important because only a tiny handful of weaknesses have been found that apply to every stage of the complex process by which the Plasmodium parasite grows and multiplies in the body. Most drugs aim at specific stages in the parasite s cycle, not all. They notably fail to wipe out early forms of the parasite called hypnozoites that remain dormant in the liver and then revive, triggering a malarial relapse. The new target, called phosphatidylinositol-4-kinase, or PI4K, is an enzyme that the parasite needs to survive in host cells. Most drugs selectively work on certain stages of the [parasite s] life cycle, but not all stages, said Case McNamara, a genomics specialist at the Novartis Research Foundation in San Diego, California. Inhibitors of this drug target have the potential to not only cure individuals of a malaria infection, but also to prevent infections and even block transmission of the parasite back to the mosquito, he added of the research. The only drug that is currently licensed to wipe hypnozoites is primaquine. Licensed more than half a century ago, the formula is considered a last-throw-of-the-dice option, as it can cause potentially life-threatening anaemia for people with an inherited genetic mutation. According to the UN s World Health Organization, 219 million people became infected with malaria in 2010, of whom 660,000 died, most of them African children under the age of five. Malaria is endemic across Myanmar and most of Southeast Asia. AFP
31 31 Poll monitors accuse Sri Lankan soldiers of voter intimidation world 33 Pope Francise urges reform of papal powers world 37 To keep jobs, Spaniards take deep wage cuts World 39 HANOI Vietnam to fine people for critical Facebook posts VIETNAM has intensified a crackdown on online dissent with a new decree that threatens fines of several thousand dollars for anybody criticising the government on Facebook. The legislation, which will come into force in January, looks set to further narrow the space for online expression in a country already branded an enemy of the internet by Reporters Without Borders. A fine of up to US$4760 will be applied to anyone producing propaganda against the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, according to a copy of decree 174 posted on a government website. Undermining national unity, distorting historical facts and writing comments on Facebook that hurt the nation have all also become administrative offences punishable by a sliding scale of fines. Serious criticism of the government is already a criminal offence punishable by jail time under a slew of vaguely worded national security laws that have been heavily criticised by rights groups. The new legislation appears to be an administrative means of punishing Facebook postings that may fall short of meeting requirements for criminal prosecution. It applies both to individual Facebook users and organisations and enterprises providing social network [services], according to the decree. Fines will be lower for individual users. Facebook, which, according to industry figures, has some 22 million active users in Vietnam is the most popular social networking site in the country, despite being periodically blocked. The new decree, which was signed by Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung in mid-november, follows the introduction of another sweeping new law, decree 72, which came into force in September and criminalises the sharing of news on Facebook. AFP TRADE MARK CAUTION petrol bomb toward Israeli border guards in the West Bank city of Hebron during a security forces killed three Palestinian militants after attempting to arrest them near service and army said. Photo: AFP SKODA AUTO a.s., a company incorporated in Czech Republic of Tr.Vaclava Klementa 869 CZ MLADA BOLESLAV, Czech Republic, is the Owner of the following Trade Mark:- TACLOBAN Mass vaccination drive for children in typhoon-ravaged Philippines A MASS vaccination program has been launched in Philippine communities devastated by Super Typhoon Haiyan to protect children against measles and polio, UN agencies said on November 27. The campaign began this week with 30,000 children being vaccinated in Tacloban city, one of the places hardest hit when Haiyan claimed thousands of lives last month, the United Nations Children s Fund [UNICEF] and the World Health Organization said. The children of Tacloban need all the protection they can get right now, UNICEF emergency response coordinator Angela Kearney said in a joint statement by the agencies. Disease is a silent predator, but we know how to prevent it and we will do everything that we can. Sigrun Roesel, team leader of the WHO s Philippine immunisation program, said the sometimes crowded and insanitary conditions at evacuation centres were potential breeding grounds for disease. Measles is a dangerous disease for young children, who could then catch pneumonia and die from it, especially if they are malnourished, Ms Roesel said. She said the measles virus was a particular concern because it could easily be transmitted through coughing and sneezing. Ms Roesel said the Philippines had its last polio case in But Filipinos do a lot of international travelling and so there is a A baby receives a measles vaccine at the Leyte Sports Center in Tacloban, Leyte province, on November 27. Photo: AFP special effort to protect against its possible reintroduction, she said. The UN said the vaccination program would aim to reach 500,000 children across the disaster zone, which covers dozens of ruined towns mainly on Leyte and Samar islands, two of the poorest in the country. The government s confirmed death toll from Haiyan, which brought some of the strongest winds ever recorded and tsunami-like storm surges, rose by about 250 to 5500, with another 1757 people missing. The death toll has continued to climb because full assessments are still yet to be made in the devastated communities, not because many more people have died in the aftermath of the typhoon. Haiyan rivals a 1976 tsunami on the southern island of Mindanao as the deadliest recorded natural disaster to strike the Philippines. The 1976 disaster killed between 5000 and 8000 people. AFP Reg. No. 5220/1995 in respect of Passenger automobiles and herefrom derived modifications, spare parts and components herefor, accessories and outfit herefor, in particular suspension equipment, spoilers, wheel cast disks, tilting roofs, roof luggage carriers and combustion engines for passenger motor cars. 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 SKODA AUTO a.s. P. O. Box 60, Yangon Dated: 2 December 2013 TRADE MARK CAUTION NOTICE is hereby given that TAI SIN ELECTRIC LIMITED a company organized under the laws of Singapore and having its principal office at 24 Gul Crescent, Jurong Town, Singapore is the owner and sole proprietor of the following trademark:- (Reg: No. IV/10264/2013) in respect of :- All goods in class 9- Cables, electric; copper wire, insulated; electricity mains (material for-) [wires, cables]; identification sheaths for electric wires; instrumentation wires; telephone wires; wires, electric; parts and fittings for all the above; all included in Class: 9 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 TAI SIN ELECTRIC LIMITED P.O. Box No. 26, Yangon. Phone: Dated: 2 nd December, 2013
32 32 World International THE MYANMAR TIMES December 2-8, 2013 SEOUL China air zone sparks protests SOUTH Korea urged China during military talks in Seoul on November 28 to revise its newly declared air defence identification zone in the East China Sea that has raised regional tensions. Vice Defence Minister Baek Seung- Joo expressed Seoul s strong regret at China s unilateral announcement of the zone over an area that includes a South Korean-controlled rock and Tokyo-administered islands. We expressed concern that China s latest move was heightening military tension in the region, said defence ministry spokesperson Kim Min-Seok. Japan, South Korea and the US have rejected China s demand that all aircraft traversing the new zone file flight plans and identification details. Two US B-52 bombers flew through the area without complying, and a South Korean military plane followed suit the next day. Japanese military and paramilitary planes have also flown through the zone unopposed. The talks in Seoul were led, on the Chinese side, by Wang Guanzhong, deputy chief of general staff of the People s Liberation Army. Mr Baek stressed that Seoul could not recognise the zone and demanded that China revise its parameters, particularly a section that overlaps with South Korea s own Air Defence Identification Zone (ADIZ). China s reaction was that it will not accept the demand, Mr Kim said. AFP COLOMBO Sri Lanka begins war tally SRI Lanka was to begin compiling a death toll from its ethnic conflict on November 28 as it seeks to fend off growing pressure over allegations of mass killings at the end of the war. Some 16,000 officials are expected to fan out across the island at the start of a six-month operation to compile a definitive toll from the conflict, which dragged on for 37 years and was one of the bloodiest in post-colonial Asia. But rights groups voiced scepticism over the credibility of the survey. In a brief statement on President Mahinda Rajapakse s website on November 27, the government said the Department of Census and Statistics would conduct what it called an island-wide census to assess the loss of human life and damage to property, adding that the work would begin on November 28. The announcement came after Mr Rajapakse hosted a Commonwealth summit in November which was overshadowed by allegations of war crimes committed by government troops in the final stages of the conflict in May UN bodies and rights groups have said that as many as 40,000 civilians may have died in the final phase of the conflict when the army routed the Tamil Tiger rebel movement in its last northern stronghold. Mr Rajapakse and his mainly ethnic Sinhalese regime have previously insisted that no civilians died in the finale to the war. The president has also rejected any suggestion of international investigators being allowed to conduct an independent inquiry on Sri Lankan soil, saying that he would only sanction a domestic probe. But international pressure has been steadily building and Mr Rajapakse was sorely embarrassed when the leaders of Canada, India and Mauritius all boycotted the Commonwealth meeting in protest at Colombo s rights record. Britain s Prime Minister David Cameron did attend the summit but he infuriated Mr Rajapakse by paying an historic visit to the war-torn Jaffna region. After meeting with survivors and relatives who had lost loved ones during the war, Mr Cameron then warned that he would lead a push for an international probe unless Sri Lanka produces credible results of its own by March. Mr Rajapakse told his fellow leaders that the country needed more time to conduct its own investigations. They have to trust us, he said at the summit. Pressure won t do anything... It s much better to wait rather than demand or dictate. While the government has previously spoken of plans to conduct a comprehensive survey, it is the first time that it has set out a timetable. The idea was one of the recommendations of a government-appointed panel that submitted a report last year. The census should enable us to determine the numbers of the dead and the disappeared, Suranjana Waidyaratne, a panel member, said. Rights groups expressed scepticism about the survey, pointing out Troops walk amongst debris on May 17, 2009, as they help evacuate the last of the Tamil civilians from the area. Photo: AFP that Sri Lanka has set up several investigations in the past into deaths and disappearances but the findings have not been released. A number of government inquiries have already been established and there has never been any kind of accountability, so a new one holds no weight whatsoever, said Suhas Chakma, director of the New Delhi-based Asian Centre for Human Rights. Mr Chakma said the survey did not have credibility unless terms of reference were included that determined whether international laws relating to war crimes had been broken. If they are seeking to assuage the sentiments of the international community and the local people, they need to determine whether war crimes have been committed, he said. More than 100,000 people are believed to have been killed during the course of the war, according to previous UN figures. The war, one of the longest-running civil conflicts in Asia, ended when the Tamil Tiger leader Velupillai Prabhakaran was killed in his final stronghold in the northeast of the island. While Jaffna held its first provincial elections since the war in September, with the main Tamil party winning by a landslide, the vote was seen as having done little to address long-standing demands for greater autonomy. AFP JOHANNESBURG Hong Kong returns ivory to S Africa HONG Kong returned a consignment of seized rhino horns and elephant tusks worth approximately US$2.25 million to South Africa on November 27, authorities said, as poaching for the Asian black market continues to escalate. The contraband of 33 rhino horns, 758 ivory chopsticks and 127 ivory bracelets arrived at Johannesburg s OR Tambo International Airport after over a year of negotiations between the two governments. It s a first for us, Colonel Johan Jooste of the Hawks special branch of police said of the consignment. South Africa, whose 25,000 rhinos make up 80 percent of the entire global population of the revered species, has been especially hit hard by poaching. Over 890 rhinos have been poached this year, already 200 more than the number of animals slaughtered in The horns of the highly endangered rhinos, which are made from the same material as human fingernails, are a popular status symbol in Asia. South Africa has deployed the army in the world-famous Kruger National Park, and nature reserves have cut off the horns or injected them with ink to curb the hunt, but with little success as poaching networks remain well financed and resourced. Hong Kong is the main entry point to Asia for the smuggled goods, according to the authorities. Most of those goods then make their way illegally to China where they are also used in traditional medicine-making. AFP
33 WASHINGTON International World 33 Find suggests Buddha lived in 6 th century BC TRADE MARK CAUTION NOTICE is hereby given that Millennium & Copthorne International Limited a company organized under the laws of Singapore and having its principal office at 36 Robinson Road #04-01 City House, Singapore is the owner and sole proprietor of the following trademark:- THE discovery of an previously unknown wooden structure at the Buddha s birthplace suggests the sage might have lived in the 6 th century BC, two centuries earlier than thought, archaeologists said on November 25. Traces of what appears to have been an ancient timber shrine were found under a brick temple that is itself within Buddhism s sacred Maya Devi Temple at Lumbini, in southern Nepal near the Indian border. In design it resembles the Asokan temple erected on top of it. Significantly, however, it features an open area, unprotected from the elements, from which it seems a tree once grew possibly the tree where the Buddha was born. This sheds light on a very, very long debate over when the Buddha was born and when the faith that grew out of his teachings took root, said archaeologist Robin Coningham in a conference call. It s widely accepted that the Buddha was born beneath a hardwood sal tree at Lumbini as his mother Queen Maya Devi, the wife of a clan chief, was travelling to her father s kingdom to give birth. But much of what is known about his life and time has its origins in oral tradition with little scientific evidence to sort out fact from myth. Many scholars contend that the Buddha who renounced material wealth to embrace and preach a life of enlightenment lived and taught in the 4 th century BC, dying at around the age of 80. What our work has demonstrated is that we have this shrine [at Buddha s birthplace] established in the 6 th century BC that supports the hypothesis that the Buddha might have lived and taught in that earlier era, Mr Coningham said. Radiocarbon and optically stimulated luminescence techniques were used to date fragments of charcoal and grains of sand found at the site. Pilgrims meditate at the wall below the nativity scene within the Maya Devi Temple at Lumbini, Nepal. Photo: AFP/National Geographic Geoarchaeological research meanwhile confirmed the existence of tree roots within the temple s central open area. Mr Coningham co-directed an international team of archaeologists at Lumbini that was funded in part by the Washington-based National Geographic Society, which plans to telecast a documentary, Buried Secrets of the Buddha, worldwide in February. The team s peer-reviewed findings appear in the December issue of the journal Antiquity, ahead of the 17 th congress of the International Association of Buddhist Studies in Vienna in August next year. Lumbini overgrown by jungle before its rediscovery in 1896 is today a UNESCO world heritage site, visited by millions of pilgrims every year. Worldwide, Buddhism counts 500 million followers. In a statement, UNESCO director general Irina Bokova called for more archaeological research, intensified conservation work and strengthened site management at Lumbini as it attracts growing numbers of visitors. UNESCO and the Nepalese government had invited Mr Coningham, Britain s leading South Asian archaeologist, to join Nepal s former director general Kosh Prasad Acharya to steer the Lumbini effort. Since it s a working temple, the archaeologists found themselves digging in the midst of meditating monks, nuns and pilgrims. It s not unusual in history for adherents of one faith to have built a place of worship atop the ruins of a venue connected with another religion. But what makes Lumbini special, Mr Coningham said, is how the design of the wooden shrine resembles that of the multiple structures built over it over time. Equally significant is what the archaeologists did not find: signs of any dramatic change in the ways in which the site has been used over the ages. This is one of those rare occasions when belief, tradition, archaeology and science actually come together, he said. AFP (Reg: No. IV/9227/2012) in respect of: Business management of hotels and resorts/motels and other temporary accommodation including serviced apartments and apartment hotels; public relations services in relation to temporary accommodation, including hotels and motels, serviced apartments and apartment hotels; marketing of temporary accommodation including hotels and motels, serviced apartments and apartment hotels including the advertising of the aforementioned services via the Internet and other global computer networks. - Class: 35 Property and leasing services including apartment house management, renting of apartments and flats, rental of serviced apartments; management of rented accommodation; management of serviced apartments, providing long-term housing accommodation. - Class:36 Temporary accommodation services, accommodation (rental of temporary), catering (food and drink), rental of meeting rooms, restaurants, cafés, reservations of temporary accommodation; providing temporary housing accommodation; providing serviced apartments; hotel services. Class: 43 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 Millennium & Copthorne International Limited P.O. Box No. 26, Yangon. Phone: Dated: 2 nd December, 2013 TRADE MARK CAUTION Heineken Brouwerijen B.V., a Company incorporated in The Netherlands, of 2e Weteringplantsoen 21, 1017 ZD Amsterdam, The Netherlands, is the Owner of the following Trade Marks:- KARO 18,000 Indonesians flee erupting volcano ALMOST 18,000 people have now fled their homes as a volcano violently erupts in western Indonesia, an official said, as it spewed more red-hot gas and rocks on November 25. Authorities at the weekend issued the highest safety alert for Mount Sinabung on the island of Sumatra after it erupted spectacularly, urging everyone in a 5-kilometre (3.1-mile) radius of the volcano to evacuate. On November 25, Sinabung erupted six times more, spewing columns of ash as high as 2000 metres (6500 feet), national disaster agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said. The number of displaced increased a lot because we lifted the alert level, he said, adding 17,713 people had now fled their homes up from around 12,000 the day before. But some communities are not as affected and people are staying at home to farm and rear livestock. Sinabung is one of dozens of active volcanoes in Indonesia, which straddles major tectonic fault lines known as the Ring of Fire. In August, five people were killed and hundreds evacuated when a volcano on a tiny island in East Nusa Tenggara province erupted. Mount Merapi in central Java, the country s most active volcano, killed more than 350 people in a series of violent eruptions in 2010 and showed signs of low activity last week. AFP Sinabung volcano spews volcanic ash in Karo on November 24. Photo: AFP Reg. No. 1164/1980 in respect of beer, ale and porter. Cautionary Notices of the said Trade Mark have been published in The Guardian of 4 November 1980, 26 March 1984, in The Working People s Daily of 25 January 1992, in The New Light of Myanmar of 11 September 1999 and in The Myanmar Times of 27 November Reg. No. 1465/1994 in respect of beer, ale and porter. Cautionary Notices in respect of the said Trade Mark have been published in The Myanmar Times of 28 May 2001 and 19 May 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 Heineken Brouwerijen B.V. P. O. Box 60, Yangon Dated: 2 December 2013
34 TRADEMARK CAUTION NOTICE is hereby given that N.V. SUMATRA TOBACCO TRADING COMPANY a company organized under the laws of Indonesia and having its principal office at of Jalan Pattimura No. 3, Pematang Siantar, Sumatera Utara, Indonesia is the Owner and Sole Proprietor of the following trademarks: - 34 World International THE MYANMAR TIMES December 2-8, 2013 LONG KESEH (Reg: No. IV/2919/1994) (Reg: No. IV/2920/1994) The above two trademarks are in respect of :- Cigarette, lighters, matches, tobacco related products Workers walk past a pile of logs near the site of the proposed dam on the Baram River in Long Keseh. Photo: AFP Borneo natives fight Malay dams in jungle (Reg: Nos. IV/2292/1997) in respect of :- All classes in 1-34 (Reg: No. IV/11158/2013) in respect of :- All goods in class 34 (Reg: No. IV/4334/1996) in respect of :- Coffee, tea, cocoa, artificial coffee, preparations made from cereals, beers, mineral and aerated waters and other non-alcoholic drinks, syrups and other preparations for making beverages, cigarette, smokers, articles, matches, lighter and other tobacco related products (Reg: No. IV/411/1992) in respect of :- Cigarettes and other tobacco related products, matches, lighter, smokers articles, coffee, tea, can food, fruit juices, soft drinks/can drinks, non alcoholic drinks, other food and beverages products, confectionery, sugar/ candy/sweets, dairy products and substitute thereof, garments, hats and other printing materials 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 N.V. SUMATRA TOBACCO TRADING COMPANY P.O. Box No. 26, Yangon. Phone: Dated: 2 nd December, 2013 WITH a grimace on his sun-bronzed face, Borneo tribal chieftain Lenjau Tusau glares down a dirt road that vanishes into a rainforest mist, on alert for what he views as a mortal enemy. Evoking their past as feared headhunters, Malaysian indigenous men and women in traditional longboats knifed down the Baram river in Sarawak state on October 23 to chase off surveyors and road-builders at the site of a proposed dam. They now man two blockades on roads into the remote region, the latest front in a battle against a colossal plan to convert Malaysia s largest, wildest state into an industrial powerhouse. We will not leave. Our life is here, our culture. The land, rivers and rocks belong to us, said Mr Lenjau, 70, whose earlobes droop from tribal piercing. Occupying northern Borneo island, much of Sarawak is a jungled landscape crossed by untamed rivers. State authorities are pushing plans to build as many as a dozen hydroelectric dams Sarawak already has three hoping that cheap electricity will lure foreign industrial investment to the underdeveloped state. Billions of dollars in such investment have been committed, the authorities say. The state has not only the right but the duty to develop the state s resources for the benefit of present and future generations, state-linked Sarawak Energy, which is spearheading the dam campaign, said. But environmentalists believe the project threatens one of the world s last great rainforests at the heart of Borneo, an island shared by Muslim-majority Malaysia, Brunei and Indonesia. To members of Sarawak s mostly Christian tribes, their culture is in peril. We don t want the dam and will do whatever we have to do. If they bring a dam, I bring a spear, said Daniel Jalong Manok, 49, one of dozens of Kenyah, Kayan and Penan people manning the Baram blockades. Scores of Penan, upset with relocation terms, have blocked access to the newly completed Murum Dam 120 kilometres (74 miles) away since authorities began filling it in late September. Eight were briefly arrested in early November and dozens remain defiantly in their homes, despite rising waters. Tribes who depend on jungles and rivers say Sarawak s once-rich rainforests are already rapidly disappearing due to decades of state-backed logging and expanding plantations. Data published in the US journal Science this month showed Malaysia We... will do whatever we have to do. If they bring a dam, I bring a spear. Daniel Jalong Manok Baram blockade protester lost 14.4 percent of its forests from , the world s highest rate. In the 1980s, the nomadic Penan were swept aside when they tried to block timber companies by seizing roads into interior regions. But Baram residents say a new resolve has developed as a budding native activist movement has grown, spreading the anti-dam message through visits to remote areas and word of mouth. Some key activists are also using social media to project their concerns abroad. We trusted the government, Mr Lenjau said. But there is a change of our mindset, how we view the world, the land and the rivers. At a road blockade on a stunning ridge-top, Baram protesters rail against authorities between joyous bursts of native song and dance. A villager smokes at the second blockade camp near the site of the proposed dam on the Baram River in Long Keseh. Photo: AFP Their ultimate target is Sarawak s all-powerful chief minister for the last 32 years, Taib Mahmud. Opponents accuse Mr Taib, 77, and his family of illegally running indigenous people off ancestral lands and plundering Sarawak s rich resources, charges he denies. Swiss environmental and human rights group the Bruno Manser Fund (BMF) last year estimated his wealth at US$15 billion, citing financial records, which would make him Malaysia s richest person. Sarawak s first mega-dam the 2400-megawatt Bakun facility, one of the world s largest went online in 2011 after decades of delays plagued by corruption and mismanagement. Locals say it has destroyed the Balui River ecosystem, and many relocated villages accuse authorities of shabby treatment. A joint statement by 80 leading Malaysian NGOs this month accused Mr Taib of cultural genocide and systematic and disastrous environmental destruction. Bakun s capacity alone dwarfs Sarawak s current 1000-megawatt consumption, but Sarawak Energy insists all Bakun and Murum output has been sold to prospective industrial investors. Suggestions of massive oversupply are ignorant or malicious, it added. Mr Taib s office did not respond to a request for comment. Indigenous activists say the Baram dam would flood an area half the size of Singapore and displace 20,000 people including villages like Tanjung Tepalit. The Kenyah community is set in a verdant Baram valley several hours upstream from the blockades. Dominated by a huge longhouse the size of a city block, it has a Catholic church, a volleyball court and landscaped walkways. Residents fish and hunt game and tend paddy fields, oil palm and other small-scale agriculture in surrounding forests. But village chief James Nyurang Usang, 63, said logging has severely depleted the forest s bounty. The Baram, clear in his youth, runs brown due to loggingrelated erosion, and fish are scarce. Many villagers make ends meet by working for timber companies or in cities. Mr Nyurang, who travelled to Murum and Bakun to view conditions there, said many felt tricked after promised jobs at Bakun did not materialise. If we have to move, it will be the end of us, said Mr Nyurang, whose longhouse quarters feature the mounted skin of a clouded leopard, wooden Kenyah war shields and a widescreen TV. I don t know if I can hold the community together somewhere else. Sarawak Energy insists no decision has been made on whether to build the Baram dam. Neither Sarawak Energy nor the government have indicated their next steps. AFP
36 TRADE MARK CAUTION NOTICE is hereby given that Techking Tires Limited a company organized under the laws of China and having its principal office at 19f, Bldg 2#, Tianbao Int l Mansion, No. 61 Haier Rd, Qingdao , P.R. China is the owner and sole proprietor of the following trademark:- (Reg: No. IV/8312/2013) in respect of :- Traction engines; bands for wheel hubs; vehicle wheel rims; vehicle wheels; bicycles; goods handling carts; inner tubes for pneumatic tires; tires for vehicle wheels; treads for retreading tires; solid tires for vehicle wheels. 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 Techking Tires Limited P.O. Box No. 26, Yangon. Phone: Dated: 2 nd December, 2013 TRADE MARK CAUTION NOTICE is hereby given that The Polyolefin Company (Singapore) Pte. Ltd., a company incorporated under the laws of Singapore and having its principal office at 1,Marina Boulevard #28-00, One Marina Boulevard, Singapore (formerly at 150, Beach Road, #10-00, Gateway West, Singapore ) is the Owner and Sole Proprietor of the following trademarks:- COSMOPLENE (Reg: No. IV/1002/1981) COSMOTHENE (Reg: No. IV/1005/1981) The above two trademarks are in respect of:- Chemicals products used in industry, science, photography, agriculture, horticulture forestry; artificial and synthetic resins; plastics in the form of powders, liquids or pastes, for industrial use; manures( natural and artificial) fire extinguishing compositions; tempering substances, and chemical ; preparations for soldering; chemical substances for preserving foodstuffs; tanning substances, adhesive substances, used in industry; plastics in the form of sheets, blocks and rods, being for use in manufacture; synthetic rubbers 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 The Polyolefin Company (Singapore) Pte. Ltd., P.O. Box No. 26, Yangon. Phone: Dated: 2 nd December, 2013 TRADE MARK CAUTION Merck KGaA., a company incorporated in Germany, of Darmstadt, Germany, is the Owner of the following Trade Marks:- Reg. No. 6102/2001 Reg. No. 8839/2013 in respect of Class 5: Pharmaceutical preparations; dietetic preparations and food supplements for medical use; vitamins. NASIVIN Reg. No. 6882/2010 Reg. No. 8840/2013 in respect of Class 5: Pharmaceutical preparations; dietetic preparations and food supplements for medical use. 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 Merck KGaA P. O. Box 60, Yangon Dated: 2 December World International THE MYANMAR TIMES December 2-8, 2013 PARIS Nanosurface opens up new front in hygiene IMAGINE a hospital room, door handle or kitchen countertop that is free from bacteria and not one drop of disinfectant or boiling water or dose of microwaves has been needed to zap the germs. That is the idea behind a startling discovery made by scientists in Australia. In a study published on November 26 in the journal Nature Communications, they described how a dragonfly led them to a nano-tech surface that physically slays bacteria. The germ-killer is black silicon, a substance discovered accidentally in the 1990s and now viewed as a promising semiconductor material for solar panels. Under an electron microscope, its surface is a forest of spikes just 500 nanometres (500 billionths of a metre) high that rip open the cell walls of any bacterium which comes into contact, the scientists found. It is the first time that any water-repellent surface has been found to have this physical quality as bactericide. Last year, the team, led by Elena Ivanova at Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne, were stunned to find cicada wings were potent killers of Pseudomonas aeruginsoa an opportunist germ that also infects humans and is becoming resistant to antibiotics. Looking closely, they found that the answer lay not in any biochemical on the wing, but in regularly-spaced nanopillars on which bacteria were sliced to shreds as they settled on the surface. They took the discovery further by examining nanostructures studding WASHINGTON US Sikhs to report airport abuse by app SIKH activists, fed up with being singled out at US airports, on November 26 launched an updated smartphone application to make it easier for passengers to file complaints. The free, downloadable app called FlyRights lets travellers instantly send their concerns to the US Transportation Security Administration, which would then respond through its own channels. Launched ahead of Thanksgiving, one of the busiest travel periods in the United States, the updated Fly- Rights 2.0 also allows passengers to send copies of their complaints to their members of Congress, and it features maps that show which airports have the most troubling records. An initial version of FlyRights has been downloaded 18,000 times since it was launched in April 2012, according to the Sikh Coalition, the advocacy group that released the app. Amardeep Singh, director of programs at the Sikh Coalition, said that many travellers did not trust the Transportation Security Administration s own response to complaints and called for an independent review of its screening practices. Until that happens, we call on the public to hold the TSA accountable by downloading and using FlyRights, Mr Singh said. Mr Singh addressed a news conference that included rights activists for African Americans and people with disabilities, who said that they also found the app useful to address concerns about profiling. The rights of every individual deserve to be protected, and they can be protected. And we can be safe without The mother of a premature baby touches her forehead with her tiny foot in the children s and maternity ward in the Philippines. Photo: AFP the translucent forewings of a redbodied Australian dragonfly called the wandering percher (Latin name Diplacodes bipunctata). It has spikes that are somewhat smaller than those on the black silicon they are 240 nanometres high. The dragonfly s wings and black silicon were put through their paces in a lab, and both were proven ruthlessly bactericidal. Smooth to the human touch, the surfaces destroyed two categories of bacteria, called Gram-negative and Gram-positive, as well as spores, the protective shell that coats certain times of dormant germs. The three targeted bugs comprised P. aeruginosa, the notorious Staphylococcus aureus and the ultra-tough Holiday travellers line up for a TSA security checkpoints at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport on November 26. Photo: AFP violating the rights of individuals, said Wade Henderson, president of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights. The Sikh faith, founded five centuries ago in South Asia, requires men to wear turbans and maintain beards. The Sikh Coalition says that some US airports pull aside virtually all Sikh men, stigmatizing them and leading outsiders to associate turbans with danger. Sikhs in the United States have spore of Bacillus subtilis, a wideranging soil germ that is a cousin of anthrax. The killing rate was 450,000 bacterial cells per square centimetre per minute over the first three hours of exposure. This is 810 times the minimum dose needed to infect a person with S. aureus, and a whopping 77,400 times that of P. aeruginosa. If the cost of making black silicon is an obstacle, many other options are around for making nano-scale germkilling surfaces, said the scientists. Synthetic antibacterial nano-materials that exhibit a similar effectiveness... can be readily fabricated over large areas, they wrote. AFP faced a wave of violence since the September 11, 2001 attacks, with assailants sometimes falsely believing they are radical Muslims. In the worst incident, a white supremacist shot dead six Sikhs after barging into their temple in Wisconsin in August Mr Singh said that the Sikh Coalition hoped eventually to expand FlyRights beyond airports to include schools, where Sikh children report widespread bullying, and other areas. AFP
37 International World 37 VATICAN CITY Pope Francis urges reform of papal powers POPE Francis called for reform to take powers from the Vatican and said Catholics should be more engaged in helping the needy, but ruled out allowing women priests in a key document released by the Vatican on November 26. The Catholic leader said he was seeking advice on how his role should change using an informal style for his first apostolic exhortation, a type of long open letter used by popes to communicate with their faithful in which he outlined his vision for the future of the Roman Catholic Church. It is my duty, as the Bishop of Rome, to be open to suggestions which can help make the exercise of my ministry more faithful to the meaning which Jesus Christ wished to give it, the pope wrote. Pope Francis said it was time for a conversion of the papacy, adding that excessive centralisation, rather than proving helpful, complicates the Church s life. Bishops should have genuine doctrinal authority, he said. We have made little progress in this regard, he said. The 84-page document did not address many of the hot-button ethical reforms called for by progressives but Pope Francis did say that the issue of the priesthood being reserved for men was not a question open to discussion. On abortion, he also said the Church cannot be expected to change its position on this question. But he added that it should do more to adequately accompany women in very difficult situations, where abortion appears as a quick solution. Pope Francis has instituted a council of cardinals to advise him on reforms including a shake-up of the Vatican bureaucracy after a series of high-profile scandals in recent years and disgruntlement in many local churches. The Vatican this month also launched a worldwide consultation of Catholic dioceses including questions about pastoral care for same-sex couples, and Pope Francis on November 26 underlined the need for churches to keep an open door even without changes to Catholic doctrine. Observers underlined the simple style of the document, which contrasted with that of Pope Francis s more academic predecessor, pope emeritus Benedict XVI. He has his own style and language. It is almost colloquial in tone, which reflects a deep pastoral inspiration, said Monsignor Claudio Celli, head of the Vatican s social communications department. Monsignor Rino Fisichella, head of the Vatican s evangelisation efforts, said the reform of the papacy meant moving from a bureaucratic, static administrative vision to a missionary one. In the document, Pope Francis stressed the importance of the Church s social message and launched a wideranging condemnation of the injustices of the global economy and modern capitalism a key priority for his papacy. The poor and the poorer peoples are accused of violence, yet without equal opportunities the different forms of aggression and conflict will find a fertile terrain for growth and eventually explode, he said. Pope Francis greets the crowd as he arrives for his general audience at St Peter s Square on November 27. Photo: AFP Turning to other faiths, Pope Francis said that ties with Islam had taken on great importance for the Catholic Church because of the growing number of Muslim immigrants in many traditionally Christian countries. We Christians should embrace with affection and respect Muslim immigrants to our countries in the same way that we hope and ask to be received and respected in countries of Islamic tradition, he said. I ask and I humbly entreat those countries to grant Christians freedom to worship and to practice their faith, in light of the freedom which followers of Islam enjoy in Western countries, he added. Much of the exhortation was devoted to spiritual issues, particularly the need for a more joyful approach to faith reflected in the document s Latin title Evangelii Gaudium (The Joy of the Gospel). There are Christians whose lives seem like Lent without Easter, he said, adding that the Christian message should not be a catalogue of sins and faults and should be about striving for the good of others. The document included practical tips from Pope Francis for priests on how to give better homilies as well as a call for them to be closer to their parishioners. Our church doors should always be open, so that if someone, moved by the Spirit, comes there looking for God, he or she will not find a closed door. AFP
39 International World 39 WASHINGTON NSA snooped on extremists porn habits THE National Security Agency planned to discredit Islamist radicals by spying on their online pornography habits, The Huffington Post reported on November 27, citing a document leaked by ex-intelligence contractor Edward Snowden. The eavesdropping agency focused on how propagandists for the violent extremists could be undermined with evidence of hypocrisy, citing surveillance on six individuals as examples, according to the quoted NSA document. A previous SIGINT [signals intelligence] assessment report on radicalization indicated that radicalizers appear to be particularly vulnerable in the area of authority when their private and public behaviors are not consistent, said the document. Some of the vulnerabilities, if exposed, would likely call into question the radicalizer s devotion to the jihadist cause, leading to the degradation or loss of his authority. A potentially damaging piece of evidence would show a militant viewing sexually explicit material online or using sexually explicit persuasive language when communicating with inexperienced young girls, it said. The six individuals targeted for NSA surveillance were seen as radical Muslims giving inflammatory speeches, but were not described in the document as linked to terror plots, the report said. The Huffington Post withheld their identities and locations. All six live outside the United States, though one was described as a US person, meaning he is either a citizen or has permanent resident status. Through electronic spying, the agency had found sexually explicit information about at least two of the people targeted, some of which was gleaned through FBI surveillance, according to The Huffington Post. One of those targeted was described as a respected academic who has promoted the idea that offensive jihad is justified. The spy service concluded that he is potentially vulnerable because of his alleged online promiscuity and that he publishes articles without checking facts, according to the report. The document did not indicate whether the NSA carried out the idea to discredit the men by leaking the information or otherwise. US intelligence agencies did not deny the report or question the validity of the document. Without discussing specific individuals, it should not be surprising that the US government uses all of the lawful tools at our disposal to impede the efforts of valid terrorist targets who seek to harm the nation and radicalise others to violence, said Shawn Turner, spokesperson for the director of national intelligence. AFP ROME Italy marks start of new era after Berlusconi ITALY entered a period of political transformation on November 28 after Silvio Berlusconi s historic ouster from parliament, with the billionaire tycoon humiliated and assailed by legal woes but now a force in opposition. Prime Minister Enrico Letta s ruling coalition will survive the withdrawal of support by Mr Berlusconi s Forza Italia party, thanks to the defection of some of his former proteges who will stay on in the government. But while he is a figure of fun around the world, Mr Berlusconi is still a formidable campaigner who can continue as a figurehead leader even if he is banned from running for election for the next six years. Silvio Berlusconi s political story did not end yesterday with his expulsion as senator, Roberto D Alimonte, one of Italy s top political experts, wrote. The Cavaliere leaves parliament but not politics, at least not for now. In fact we should not forget that he still has six-seven million loyal voters on his side. Mr Berlusconi was in turns defiant and humble in a speech to thousands of supporters on November 27 just minutes before the Senate declared his expulsion, donning the mantle of victimhood and vowing a fight for liberty. He promised to hold another rally next Sunday to celebrate the founding of the first 1000 Go Silvio fan clubs around the country and said he was staying to protect our right, our assets and our freedom. Some experts are predicting a populist campaign from Mr Berlusconi, known for his anti-tax, anti-europe rhetoric, but others say the ejection and Mr Letta s government could gain as the economy improves. His exclusion from parliament puts him in a precarious condition... and if this is not the end, it is clearly the beginning of a decline that could be quick, said Marcello Sorgi, the editor of La Stampa daily. A bellwether of Mr Berlusconi s continuing influence could be the European Parliament elections in May But the 77-year-old s bid to stay on could be hampered on the legal front more than at the ballot box. As part of the tax fraud conviction for which he was booted out of parliament, Mr Berlusconi will have to serve 12 months of either house arrest or community service in which his freedom of movement will be curtailed. The sentence is to be implemented early next year and at the end of 2014 Mr Berlusconi could face definitive conviction for having sex with an underage prostitute and abusing the powers of the prime minister s office, which could force him into house arrest for years. As an ex-senator, he has also lost his parliamentary immunity, which makes him more vulnerable to arrest in any of multiple other legal proceedings against him. Mr Berlusconi s defeat at the hands of fellow senators instead of through the ballot box left a bitter taste even among some of his most virulent critics. There is no doubt that yesterday marked the end of an era that has lasted for 20 years, said Stefano Folli, a columnist for Il Sole 24 Ore. We would have preferred a different and less bitter end, for us and for our national dignity. Mr Letta s more immediate danger could be friendly fire from an ambitious centre-left politician, Matteo Renzi. The 38-year-old mayor of Florence, is almost certain to be voted in as head of the main Democratic Party has become increasingly critical of Letta s government in his quest for the party leadership. This government cannot continue pretending that everything has stayed the same. We have to turn things around, Mr Renzi said in an interview with the Corriere della Sera daily, adding, Otherwise, it s over. AFP MADRID Spaniards take wage cuts to keep jobs AFRAID of joining the one in four workers out of a job, Spanish employees are accepting ever deeper salary cuts as they pay the price of the economy s growing competitiveness. An 11-day work stoppage this month by Madrid street sweepers, which left the Spanish capital strewn with litter, was a striking example. Employees were protesting a plan to axe 1100 of the 7000 street sweeper jobs and to slash the salaries of those remaining by up to 40 percent. The staff, employed by private firms working for the city, won a deal that entails no job losses but less money, with a 45-day unpaid furlough each year. At Catalan doughnut manufacturer Panrico, the 1914 workers initially signed a draft agreement for 745 layoffs and an 18pc salary cut but finally decided this weekend to reject it. The background to both cases is the fear of joining a queue of six million people seeking work in vain. With 26pc of workers out of a job, this mass of unemployed people serves as a reserve army, putting downward pressure on salaries, said Fernando Luengo, economist at Madrid s Complutense University and a member of the EconoNuestra think tank. Wielding a Sword of Damocles, firms can easily threaten workers to accept worse conditions or be fired, he said, with latest labour market reforms making it cheaper to lay off employees. A few years ago, Spaniards fretted about the fate of unfortunate thousandaires people who earned just 1000 euros a month, Mr Luengo said. Now, for many people having a salary of 1000 euros is almost a luxury, he added. Paloma Lopez, employment secretary of major Spanish union CCOO, said some 60pc of Spanish workers now earned less than 1000 euros a month. They have major difficulties because you still have to pay the mortgage despite everything, Ms Lopez said. A protester wears mask at a demonstration where homeless people are going to claim their rights, outside the health ministry in Madrid on November 21. Photo: AFP You see it everywhere: In the streets, small businesses that have not shut yet are in trouble, she added. Spanish employees have stopped consuming. According to the National Statistics Institute, average household incomes tumbled by 9.5pc between 2008 and 2012, and 21.6pc of the population is at risk of falling below the poverty line. The research arm of Spanish bank La Caixa estimates that Spanish salaries have fallen by 7.1pc since The Foundation of Applied Economic Studies, FEDEA, estimates that salaries declined by 12pc between 2010 and Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy s conservative government refers to the process as an internal devaluation necessary to regain competitiveness. Previously, whenever there was an imbalance it was always fixed by devaluing the peseta, said Ignacio de la Torre, analyst at financial consultants Arcano. Since we can no longer devalue the currency, the only way to rebalance the economy is to devalue salaries, he added. From the purely economic point of view, it is a recipe that seems to work. Spain has become ultra-competitive in terms of salaries, the consultant said, with workers earning onethird less than the eurozone average. In September, Spanish exports leapt by 8.3pc, eight times more than the eurozone average. In the automobile industry, factories are bustling and releasing new models, often thanks to agreements struck with unions to keep salaries in check. Patrick Artus, of the French investment bank Natixis, said the salary cost advantage could help Spain become a key production centre for midrange industrial products in Europe, making it the China of Europe. The International Monetary Fund has encouraged Spain to go further, suggesting a 10pc cut in salaries over two years would boost gross domestic product by 5pc. But socially, it is bad news, said Carlos Obeso, director of labour market studies at the ESADE business school. For proof, Mr Obeso said, you don t need to be an economist. Just go out into the street. AFP TRADE MARK CAUTION Notice is hereby given that BIOFARMA of 50, rue Carnot Suresnes cedex, FRANCE, is the Owner and Sole Proprietor of the following trademark:- ARVADUX (Reg: No. IV/12109/2013) In respect of: - Pharmaceutical and veterinary preparations; sanitary preparations for medical purposes; dietetic substances adapted for medical use, food for babies; plasters, materials for dressings; material for stopping teeth, dental wax; disinfectants; preparations for destroying vermin; fungicides, herbicides in class 05. PROTOS (Reg: No. IV/12110/2013) In respect of: - Pharmaceutical, veterinary and sanitary preparations; dietetic substances adapted for medical use, food for babies; plasters, materials for dressings; material for stopping teeth, dental wax; disinfectants; preparations for destroying vermin; fungicides, herbicides in class 05. TRIPLION (Reg: No. IV/12111/2013) In respect of: - Cardio-vascular Product, International Class 05. Any fraudulent imitation or unauthorized use of the said trademark or other infringements whatsoever will be dealt with according to law. U Nyein Kyaw B.Sc., Dip Engg., R.L., D.B.L. For BIOFARMA Room 007, Inya Lake Hotel 37, Kaba Aye Pagoda Road Mayangone Tsp, Yangon, Myanmar Tes: (951) Date: 2 nd December, 2013
40 o the pulse editor: MANNY MAUNG THE MYANMAR TIMES december 2-8, 2013 g y u r f i n g e r s o n i t t e A century apart, two GermanS photograph Myanmar Yangon exhibition pairs photos from 1911 wi AN exhibition of rare photos in Yangon provides a window into the country s past and present, revealing how things have changed and what has stayed the same in the last 100 years. Thanks to the Munich State Museum of Ethnology, photos taken over a century ago are now on display at the National Theatre in Yangon from November 22 to January 12. Complementing photographer Christine Scherman s 43 blackand-white photographs from 1911 are 43 colour photographs taken Zon Pann Pwint between 2010 and 2013 by Birgit Neiser. Both photographers are from Munich, and their joint show, entitled Golden Land: Burma/Myanmar, 100 Years, reveals striking similarities between Scherman s monochrome photographs from the past and Neiser s artwork from the present era. The juxtaposition is all the more surprising given that Neiser had not seen Scherman s work at the time she took her own photographs. At first I had no idea and I didn t know anything about Christine Scherman and her photos. I was really overwhelmed when I saw her photos. What a coincidence I have many matching images in my own archive. She was a Munich documentary photographer from a hundred years ago and I am a Munich documentary photographer too, Neiser said. I was surprised that two female photographers from the same city documented the same country. A hundred years have passed, but it
41 the pulse 41 Photographs, from 100 years apart, are attracting large crowds at the National Theater in Yangon. Photos: Zarni Phyo th others taken during the past three years became a great project. The 43 Scherman photos on display are only a small fraction of the 1200 in the museum s collection, current director Christine Stelzig told The Myanmar Times at the exhibition, adding that her own visit to Myanmar last year left her overwhelmed by the country and its people and prompted her to want to share this unique bit of history. I wanted to show these pictures of the past to Myanmar people who probably don t know that they exist, she said. Scherman travelled to Myanmar in 1911 with her husband, himself the director of the Munich State Museum of Ethnology at the time. Using a plate camera, she captured over 1200 images of the country and its people, and the glass negatives were later archived at the museum. Like Scherman, Neiser also travelled to Myanmar with her husband, making about a dozen visits since 1981 compared to Scherman s one. Of course, modern times have made travel much easier, whether international or from one part of Myanmar to another. Photographer to photographer, Neiser expressed admiration at the tremendous dedication Scherman s photos represent. When I look at these historical photographs, I realise they didn t have cars or planes at that time. Her equipment had to be transported by elephant or ox cart, and she was travelling in the rainy season. She had to develop all her photos herself, Neiser said. Even today travelling to the border is still physically taxing. When I drive a motorbike through the northern Shan mountains, it s rough ground and I am afraid of breaking my camera. But it was nothing compared to how she travelled 100 years ago. Displayed together at the exhibition, the two photographers pictures reveal similarities and differences between past and present. One of Scherman s black-and-white pictures shows fishermen on Inle Lake using their legs to row, leaving their hands free to fish; next to it, one of Neiser s colour photos shows fishermen on the same lake, in shallower water, waiting to pitch their conically framed nets over their prey. One visitor, artist Nay Myo Say, said the juxtaposition of photos revealed the toll a challenging century has had on the country s people. When I compare the rare blackand-white pictures with the colour photos taken in recent times, I spot interesting differences, Nay Myo Say said. When I look at the faces of the old Myanmar people in the black-and-white pictures of the past, they have calm and peaceful faces. It seems they are satisfied. But the faces in modern pictures seem hectic. After its Yangon run, the exhibition will travel to Bagan and will be displayed at the Bagan Archaeological Museum from January 20 until the end of March. And after that? The photographs remain here, Stelzig said. They belong to Myanmar.
42 42 the pulse THE MYANMAR TIMES December 2-8, 2013 Coming home for Kahtein Kahtein celebrations are often associated with Buddhism, but for some, it s also about family Than Naing Soe MAKING fried rice for breakfast is normal for Daw Khin Htay. Today, however, she seems a little more vibrant than usual. Her mood, and her frying pan are overflowing for the same reasons: Her son and his friends are returning home for a visit. Daw Khin Htay has seven children. But only she, her husband and her daughter still live at home, and the same is true for many of her neighbours. Parami village, in Sagaing Region s Ayadaw township, is now home mostly to the elderly and the young. A changing climate left farmers unable to grow crops ten years ago and the area s agriculture-based economy has never recovered. As a result, many young people have been forced to leave in order to find work as labourers in cities like Yangon, Mandalay and Monywa. Others have gone further, selling their farms to finance trips to Malaysia to find work abroad. The annual Kahtein festivities, held every year during Tazaungdaing, the eighth month of the Myanmar lunar calendar, mark a bright spot in the year and the busiest time in the village, Daw Khin Htay said. The festival celebrates the end of rainy season and is marked by the donation of robes and other offerings to monks. In Parami, the celebrations are arranged by the abbot of Kabar Aye Monastery and funded by donations from villagers. However large the troubles we ve faced, we celebrate Kahtein as much as we can every year, she said. In previous years, Parami had been famous for its Kahtein celebrations. Residents used to put on a stage show featuring local amateur performers Residents participate in a donation ceremony in Parami Village. Photo: Staff backed by a professional musical troupe and a female dancer hired from Monywa. The sight drew crowds from around the area. Not only nearby villages but even people from urban areas in Monywa used to enjoy our village s Kahtein ceremony, Daw Khin Htay said. Because of the struggling local economy, however, the village hasn t been able to hold the stage performance for a decade. The celebrations have become more low-key. Residents offer food and supplies to monks at the monastery early in the morning and then it s time for everyone to feast, with everyone sharing a large meal featuring chunks of pork, shredded mango salad and dried fried chillis. In the afternoon, residents hold a procession around the village, after which they listen to the monks preaching Buddhist doctrine in the monastery. It s not as grand as it once was because so many families are separated. Daw Khin Htay says she worries that the village s reputation as a place to celebrate Kahtein will gradually fade away. At the same time, the Kahtein festival has taken on an added meaning to residents. It s become a time of reunion, as migrant workers often choose the holiday to come back and visit their families. One of my sons is coming back home for Kahtein, Daw Khin Htay says, smiling as she stirs the rice. Despite leaving the village, they always return home for Kahtein. Translation by Zar Zar Soe Role play From acting to funeral directing Zon Pann Pwint Former actor Kyaw Thu now runs a funeral service. Photo: Aung Htay Hlaing AS a young actor, Kyaw Thu s natural talent and sympathetic characters made the audience feel the gamut of emotions, from joy to despair. In his later years, however, he finds he s the one being deeply touched by others. The transition from amateur photographer and painter to leading actor to self-effacing humanitarian worker who has dedicated his life offering free funerals for those who can t otherwise afford proper burial of their loved ones is all chronicled in Kyaw Thu s new book. Kyun Taw Thar Thamada Gyi Phyit Khae Yin (If I Were President) launched November 1, had all copies snapped up within three days of going on sale. A second printing came out on November 9, with readers allowed to buy only one book each to make sure there were enough copies for everyone. But even that didn t satisfy the public, and a third edition has now been launched, on November 28 in Mawlamyine, Mon State. Covering his birth until the present day, the book focuses on his humanitarian work as a philanthropist, including the challenges he faced as he fought against deep-rooted superstitions about death and funerals. While the book contains articles on his life and work written by different interviewers, it is based around a series of posts Kyaw Thu made online describing his charitable work. I use to write on Facebook what I experienced while working in society and the feelings of the people I came across everyday, Kyaw Thu told The Myanmar Times. One day I met a publisher, who had collected all the posts and wanted to publish the book. The two-time Myanmar Academy Award-winner remembers the moment he started the transition into philanthropy and community service. My daughter used to visit the meditation centre in her youth. She asked a question to the venerable sayadaw about where actors would go in the next life, he said. He responded that they may go to purgatory when they die because film artists cause people to feel strong emotions. It really shocked me. Kyaw Thu began to think about how to work for the good of his fans, the community, and the social work became a welcome distraction from filming. When [well-known film director and writer] U Thu Kha was hospitalised, I looked after him, Kyaw Thu said. We experienced an incident in the hospital in which a patient, an old woman, was allowed by the doctor to be discharged from the hospital. But the family of the woman had disappeared. She died at the hospital and the hospital took on the responsibility of cremating the body. When he asked why her family didn t take her home when the doctor discharged her, Kyaw Thu was told that they didn t have money to take care of the old woman at home, nor could they afford to cremate her if she died. The incident gave U Thu Kha the idea of starting a foundation to provide free funeral services for those who are too poor to afford it, Khaw Thu said. My wife s aunty worked with a free funeral service in Mandalay, named Mandalay Byamaso Association [byamaso means the four cardinal virtues: love, compassion, rejoicing at others success, and detachment] two years before U Thu Kha founded the society. The Free Funeral Service Society was founded on January 1, 2001, and since then, Kyaw Thu said, he has had little time to spend on filming. His life took an unexpected turn in 2007 when he was suspended from filming and acting for offering food to monks who set off on peaceful protests against the rise in living costs the same year. I look on the bright side, he said. I can spend more time on humanitarian work. Despite the ban, Kyaw Thu continues to take on a number of roles they re just less glamorous than those of the big screen. He drives hearses himself. He carries coffins. He travels and gives talks. Sometimes he even sleeps at the society s offices. And, the title of his book aside, he says these are all things he ll continue doing, no matter who is in charge. Whoever is elected to the presidency of the Myanmar, I will be carrying coffins and giving services to the poor and the families of the dead. Seesaryake rest home A glimmer of hope even at twilight Chitsu Wai TWILIGHT may have fallen over the lives of its residents, but the Seesaryake rest home for sick and elderly people offers care and home comfort until the end of their days. The home seesar means twilight in the Myanmar language takes in homeless elderly people who have nowhere else to go, and offers medical care not available in most old people s homes. Sick elderly people have priority... they are our VIPs Daw Khin Ma Ma Vice president, Seesaryake The rest home, located in the North Dagon township, was founded by Daw Than Myint Aung after being asked by the neighbours of an 80-year-old blind woman to take care of her. Relying on community donations since then, the rest home has become a sort of palliative care home for the sick and elderly. Daw Khin Ma Ma, vice president and spokesperson of Seesaryake, told The Myanmar Times, Most homes for the elderly don t accept sick people. They accept only people who can feed and look after themselves. Daw Than Myint Aung decided to build a home for sick old people. Seesaryake has four nurses and five nursing assistants, as well as an intensive care unit. When it opened in April 2010 it housed eight patients. There are now 22 male and 42 female residents. One, a 90-year-old man who did not want to mention his name, had become so lonely and depressed before coming here he could not eat. His son, a doctor in England, could not return to Myanmar, and the old man was refused a visa to enter Britain. Other relatives were uninvolved, so he was referred to Seesaryake by neighbours. An old woman found unconscious next to a rubbish bin had been hit by a car and gnawed by rats. Nobody knew her age or her name. She was taken to Seesaryake, where her broken ribs were set, and lived there for six months before passing away. We have 30 people on the waiting list who have somewhere else to live for the moment. We meet to decide who should fill vacancies when they arise. Abandoned sick elderly people have priority if they are urgent cases. They are our VIPs, said Daw Khin Ma Ma. Seesaryake staff are trained in washing, feeding and healthcare. Many of the residents arrive undernourished and dehydrated. There are only three conditions of acceptance: Residents must be more than 70 years old, homeless and sick. There are no restrictions as to race or religion, and often, the age condition is relaxed if the applicant s date of birth is unknown. The oldest resident is 95-year-old Daw Khin Kyi, once a famous actress, whose daughter was unable to care for her. Everyone has his or her own story, and nobody knows what their future holds. The abandoned, the homeless and those with broken health at the end of their days have little to look forward to. But because of Seesaryake, even in twilight there is a glimmer of hope. If you are concerned about a sick and elderly person and would like someone to assess their condition, call the Seesaryake rest home at or ,
43 the pulse 43 Art through forms and generations Nandar Aung SITTING peacefully under a chair in what little shade there is at Yangon s Sein Lan So Pyae garden next to Inya Lake, former film director and writer Bogalay U Tin Aung, who is now over 90 years old, poses patiently as a number of artists attend to him. The weather is hot, but he doesn t complain as the artists take their time chiselling his features into sculpture, or trying to capture the moment in paint or even graffiti. Among the five traditional artists, 20-year-old graffiti artist Arkar Chaw is there to create his version of Bogalay U Tin Aung s portrait. This is definitely a new experience for me, Arkar Kyaw described. I ve done many portraits but I ve never worked with the subject at the same time. The project is a collaboration organised by sculptor U Kyaw Kyaw Min, who has been impressing audiences this year with his live performance sculpting. This time, he said, he wanted to involve a new generation with new traditions in art that complimented the classical styles. I have sculpted with a live model more than 30 times before, but I really wanted to involve Arkar Kyaw so that we can attract younger people, U Kyaw Kyaw Min said. That way, we can also get the younger generation finding out about those who have worked in the creative industries, sometimes even longer than the younger artists have been alive. Bogalay U Tin Aung is best known for his contributions to the Myanmar film industry, having been recognised for a a Sithu lifetime of achievemen award by the Myanmar government in 2012, and a separate Lifetime Achievement Award this year by the Myanmar Motion Picture Organization. Bogalay U Tin Aung said it was a pleasure to also be recognised as a model for art, particularly while he was still alive to view and appreciate the results of the artwork modelled after him. I ve spent my whole life dedicated to making movies and trying to capture some form of reality on film or on paper, he said. It seems that it is my turn now to have my expressions and mood captured somehow. Graffiti artist Arkar Chaw sits by his portrait of former film director, Bogalay U Tin Aung. Photo: Aung Htay Hlaing Never too late to get fit PEOPLE who start exercise even late in life can reap the benefit in good health, a study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine said on Monday. Researchers tracked the health of nearly 3500 Britons whose average age was 64, for more than eight years. People who had a record of sustained and regular exercise meaning vigorous activity at least once a week boosted the likelihood of healthy ageing sevenfold compared to a lifestyle of persistent inactivity. The gain among newcomers to exercise was roughly triple. Significant health benefits were... seen among participants who became physically active relatively late in life, the paper said. Healthy ageing was rated by an absence of major diseases and disabilities, good mental health the lack of depression or cognitive decline and the ability to maintain social connections. Around a fifth of the volunteers fell into this category at the eight-year follow-up mark. AFP New Springsteen Album set BRUCE Springsteen has set January 14 as the release date for his 18 th studio album, a mix of cover versions, studio outtakes and re-recordings of old songs titled High Hopes. This is music I always felt needed to be released, said the US rock legend on his brucespringsteen.net website, where he also posted a video for the title track composed by singer-songwriter Tim Scott McConnell. Musicians appearing alongside The Boss on the 12 tracks include guitarist Tom Morello and members of the E Street Band, including saxophonist Clarence Clemons who died in The new album will come out two weeks before Springsteen performs the first of three scheduled concerts in South Africa ahead of a tour of Australia and New Zealand. AFP
45 the pulse 45 Indelible Indawgyi Surrounded by scenic mountains and still pristine water, Myanmar s largest lake is easy to fall in love with A view of Hepa village from the lake. Photo: Gregory Klemm Gregory Klemm IN remote Kachin State, seven hours away from anywhere else that could be considered a tourist destination, Indawgyi Lake offers a serene and secluded haven for nature lovers and anyone seeking a true escape. There is a refreshing sense of isolation in this tranquil retreat. The nearest internet connection of any form is a two-hour drive away, only certain bands of CDMA phones will be able to receive any signal at all, refrigeration is rare, and electricity is limited to just over two hours a day. You have little choice but to submit to being cut off from the outside world. Reaching Indawgyi Lake is not easy. From Myitkyina it s almost a five-hour train ride to Hopin, followed by a two-hour taxi trip, or a three- to six-hour shared pick-up truck ride, along a very bumpy road to Lonton village on the lake. For that reason, this is a place that has never seen many tourists. The numbers declined even further with the resumption of conflict in Kachin State in Fewer than 60 tourists have made the journey since then, and numbers are only just now starting to pick up again. Indawgyi Lake has also recently become something of an adventure destination. With kayaks and bicycles for hire, and trekking and recreational fishing on offer, it has a claim to offering the most varied outdoor tourist activities of any destination in Myanmar. The services are provided by Inn Chit Thu (Lovers of Indawgyi) Tourism Group, a communitybased organisation run as a social enterprise, with profits set to be invested in environmental conservation and community projects. Exploring the lake by kayak is a great way to get around, free from the constant drone of motors that infest Indawgyi s smaller and more touristy cousin, Inle. Being out on the vast expanse of water as dusk approaches and the Shwe Myitzu Pagoda, as seen from a kayak. Photo: Gregory Klemm surrounding mountains turn from green to gold to purple, without another boat in sight or earshot, is an amazing experience. In a full day of kayaking, it s possible to visit the famous floating Shwe Myitzu Pagoda as well as a number of the lake-side villages. The villages each have their own charms. The local people are majority Shan, with ethnic Kachin and Bamar Being out on the vast expanse of water as dusk approaches and the surrounding mountains turn from green to gold to purple, without another boat in sight or earshot, is an amazing experience spread throughout. While few have preserved their traditions in terms of ethnic dress, they are incredibly hospitable towards foreigners. The welcome received when visiting any of the pretty villages that dot the lake shore is sometimes overwhelming. In the particularly scenic village of Lwemun, the legend of Indawgyi Lake is described at a small lake-side shrine. The legend goes that before Indawgyi Lake existed, there used to be a village below Lwemun which is now underwater. A widow had a premonition that the village would be flooded and the lake would be formed, so she fled to the hill on which Lwemun now sits. And those who were so unforgivably foolhardy as to fail to place faith in the fanciful dreams of an elderly bereaved woman? They were, it seems, doomed to a watery grave. The simple but serviceable Indawmahar Guesthouse in Lonton Village is currently the only place where foreigners can stay overnight. It means travellers to Indawgyi need to be comfortable with cold bucket showers and basic rooms, but the shared bathroom in a detached wooden building on the lake is kept clean and has a quaint charm to it. The guesthouse s location, meanwhile right on the lake is unbeatable. Its large balcony is a perfect place for whiling away hours admiring the views as the light changes and small fishing boats meander past. Indawmahar s manager, U Tin Myaing, is an exceedingly generous and welcoming host despite the fact that it s often something of a surprise for him to receive foreign visitors and it tends to interfere with his daily fishing routine. He will constantly insist that you drink his complimentary 3-in-1 coffee, try his best to talk to you through hard-to-comprehend miming gestures, provide you with bait to fish from the guesthouse balcony and happily fry up anything you catch for you to eat. It s difficult to leave Indawgyi. The beautiful scenery, the hospitable people and the revitalising feeling of spending your days engaged in outdoor activities, all while being forced to forget about the outside world, make it addictive. As you make the long journey back after several days at the lake, you ll be amazed in turn by the most ordinary things: like how the bottled water sold on the train appears by some magic to actually be cold, or the wonder of paved roads, or the marvellous convenience of regular electricity. But you will miss the simple paradise you left behind. A morning s catch, fresh from the lake. Photo: Gregory Klemm
46 46 the pulse tea break THE MYANMAR TIMES December 2-8, 2013 Universal Crossword Edited by Timothy E. Parker SUDOKU PACIFIC ON THE WAY UP By Tim Burr ACROSS 1 Crouch 6 Soft mineral 10 Martial arts hero Jackie 14 Brown shade 15 Hold your horses! 16 Successor of the mark 17 Roofer s equipment 20 House of Lords member 21 Savings acct. addition 22 Bobby Hockey 23 Set in order 25 A or an, e.g. 29 Don t make me laugh! 30 Chess champion Bobby 31 Line from an operator? 33 Cornea irritant 35 Canal zone? 36 Exhibit sure footing 40 Morse code sound 41 Strong smell 42 Turned on the waterworks 43 Airy shoe feature 46 Dog s best friend 47 Firefighters quality 48 Money spent in Albania 52 Weeder s tool 53 Day light? 54 Iran and Iraq do it 55 Escalator, essentially 60 Barbell material 61 Fine by me 62 Modify 63 Ex-speaker s name 64 Old symbols of social status 65 Migratory aquatic birds 8 Cinema s Chaney 9 Food label figures 10 Comedian known as The Entertainer 11 Paul Newman Western 12 you with me? 13 Neither counterpart 18 Lovelorn utterance 19 Painting and sculpting, for two 24 Pusher s chaser 25 Happily ever 26 Aviary sound 27 Left the ground for a moment 28 Be on the side of caution? 31 Slide through a card reader 32 Provide food, uptown 33 Computer communicator 34 Palindromic musician 37 Slammer 38 Majestic swimmer 39 Arm of the sea? 40 Play- (modeling compound) 44 Nary a trace 45 Common noun suffix 46 Kind of van or bus 48 Berth places 49 Taper off 50 Artful dodges 51 Firewood measure 53 For fellows only 55 Lots of secs.? 56 Metal-in-the-rough 57 Solemn promise 58 Participate in a biathlon, say 59 Dirt-dishing newspaper DOWN 1 First instruction, often 2 Code writer of a kind 3 External 4 Collapsible headgear 5 Compose, say 6 Strong string 7 On streak (winning) DILBERT BY SCOTT ADAMS PEANUTS BY CHARLES SCHULZ CALVIN AND HOBBES BY BILL WATTERSON PUZZLE SOLUTIONS Laugh all the way to the bank when you rent this space. 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 Marketing Department to book this space permanently and laugh all the way to the bank with the extra business coming in your door. Telephone us now on
47 the pulse food and drink 47 Phyo s cooking adventure Oodles and oodles of Italian noodles ITALIAN noodles (pasta) is the feature ingredient for this week s recipes. As my little sweetie-pie is sick, she requested pasta for both lunch and dinner. It seems pasta might be her comfort food. As I was already cooking pasta for her, I thought I should prepare some recipes for this column as well. Linguini is the favoured choice of noodle this time. Garlic and crab meat is used for the sauce and a generous amount of breadcrumbs are mixed in for texture. A twist of chilli makes it spicy and more sophisticated for the adult palate. I use frozen cooked crab meat for speedy cooking. The second recipe is an inspiration from Asian dishes. Leftover BBQ chicken is used in the recipe. Linguini is a good substitute for egg noodles. It s one of the quickest and most versatile ingredients for fusion dishes. Fettuccini is a good option as well. Linguini with crab meat and bread crumbs (serves 6) 500 grams dried linguini 1½ tablespoons olive oil 5-6 slices bread (day old bread is fine) 3 cloves garlic (crushed) 200 grams cooked, frozen crab meat (thawed) 2 small red chillies (cut into halves, de-seeded and diced) Ground black pepper To garnish: A few basil leaves Parmisan cheese Preparation Grind the bread in a grinder or blend. Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil into a non-stick frying pan. Fry bread crumbs until they turn golden, tossing them in the pan throughout. When the colour is even, remove the frying pan from the element and allow to cool. Prepare the pasta as per package instructions. Do not use oil in the boiling water. After draining the pasta, reserve a cup of cooked pasta water. To defrost the crab meat, leave the packet in a sieve at room temperature until thawed. Sprinkle salt over the crab meat. Let water drain through the sieve. It will make the crab meat nice and soft. In a frying pan, add olive oil and heat over medium heat. Sauté the crushed garlic. When the aroma comes out, add diced chilli and fry for a minute. Then bring the crab meat into the pan and fry for 2-3 minutes. Add ground black pepper as you wish. Mix with cooked linguini into the pan. Salt for taste. Add 3 tablespoons of cooked pasta water into the mixture so it won t be too sticky. Then add fried breadcrumbs and grated parmisan cheese. Garnish with basil leaves. Linguini with spicy chicken sauce (serves 6) 500 grams dried linguini 2 tablespoons olive oil or vegetable oil ½ BBQ chicken 1 tablespoon chilli and garlic sauce or Shan chilli paste 1 medium onion (diced) 5 tomatoes (roughly diced) 1 packet baby corn (5-6 pieces) 1/3 cup chicken stock To garnish: Shallots (sliced) A few basil leaves Preparation Shred the BBQ chicken. Prepare the pasta as per package instructions. Do not add oil to the boiling water. After draining the pasta, reserve a cup of cooked pasta water. While preparing the pasta, sauté diced onions in a saucepan. Use medium heat. When the onions become translucent, fry for one more minute and add garlic chilli sauce. Fry for one more minute. Add baby corn and tomatoes and fry for 4-5 minutes. Add chicken stock and let boil. When it starts to boil, turn the heat down and simmer for 5 minutes. Salt for taste. Serve the sauce over the linguini and garnish with shallots or basil leaves. Tips Angel hair pasta can replace linguini, and school prawns or diced prawns are options for replacing the crab meat. After you make the bread crumbs, keep them in an airtight jar for a week. They are good with salads, pasta and BBQ meat. I use Lee Kum Kee brand (available at most good supermarkets) for the garlic chilli sauce, which is very similar to a Shan chilli paste. Foodie Quote Food is the most primitive form of comfort. Sheilah Graham ( ), US gossip columnist Nyaung Shwe dishes up a delicious dose of R&R manny maung JUST three years since I last visited, Nyaung Shwe, at the gateway to Shan State s Inle Lake, has changed so dramatically I nearly didn t recognise it. It s still a sleepy little town with streets arranged in an easy grid system, and you can still walk from one end to the other in about five minutes. But the multitude of funky bars and quaint restaurants serving up astonishingly great food was notably absent last time and very much happening now. As happy as I was to stumble into such a vibrant scene when we arrived in town, it made me a bit worried that my favourite Shan noodle house may have been usurped by these fancy new diners. So I made a beeline straight for it and was delighted to find Muse still hosting locals for traditional breakfasts of tofu nwe and athoke. Two tofu nwe, two coffees and many, many cups of smoked jasmine tea later, the total bill was delivered K1500. Sometimes it s heartening to know that not everything changes. That said, my visit to the View Point Lodge s restaurant later that Green tomato and avocado (right) salads. Photos: Manny Maung Stuffed and deep-fried chicken wings from View Point Lodge. Photo: Manny Maung night was an event to be remembered. Choosing the tapas mix (around K60,000 for enough morsels for two of us to gorge on all night), we found the local Shan produce fused with European and Asian culinary delights. A typical green tomato salad was converted into a heavenly mix of sesame, peanuts and sharp lime juice to blend with the sweet yet firm green tomato. Stuffed, deep-fried chicken wings and pumpkin and pork balls were accompanied by a tangy but balanced tamarind dipping sauce. I still had room for dessert, but wanting to try another place and to walk off some of what I ate we strolled over the bridge to the other side of town, passing beer stations and cafes that were doing a decent trade for a late night in a small town. Dessert was a slice of flourless chocolate cake and a cup of rose-infused tea at The French Connection (K8000), where, having completely stuffed myself over the course of the day, I kicked up my feet on a lounge suite to soak up the gentle buzz of Nyaung Shwe and immerse myself in some much-needed rest and relaxation. Red wine Chateau Bel-Air Bordeaux 2010 Light of body and strawberry red in colour, this classic old-world wine is versatile and holds its own well. With soft cranberry notes and a dry finish, this classic red is great with almost all food or good enough to be drunk on its own. K 22,000 Score 8/10 White wine Table Mountain Sauvignon Blanc 2012 As far as cheap wines go, this ain t so bad. The colour of green apples, it s sharp and zesty. Needs some sherbet to balance the flavours but if drunk cold, you won t even notice the difference apart from that headache in the morning. K 6000 Score 7/10
48 48 the pulse socialite THE MYANMAR TIMES December 2-8, 2013 The Mystyerious Show Edulink Australia graduation ceremony Ma Wai Wai Moe, Ma Wai Wai Aung, Ma Theingi and performers Thandar Hlaing and Eugene Quah Winnie Khine and Eugene Quah Mark Wood and Eugene Quah Revlon new cosmetics launch P & G donation ceremony Attendee Khine Thazin Yu Wah and model Lin Zarni Zaw San Toe Naing Raul T Falcon U Aung Ko Latt Green Cross product launch U Maw Ra Sone Thin Par and U Cho Gyi May Sabel Daw Khin Khin Lay Daw Win Win Tint Knorr Curry Kitchen Caravan ceremony Ma Phyo Sai Sai Kham Leng and attendee Kay Thi and July Ma Htet Nay Chi Htay Ma Thit Thit Htet
49 the pulse socialite 49 Nyein Ei Ei Htwe 75 th anniversary of Nescafé SOCIALITE kicked off the week with the P&G donation ceremony at Traders Hotel on November 20. Fresh from a brief interlude of actual work, she then, on November 22, descended on Junction Square to grace a fashion contest courtesy of the Giordano I Love MM brand. The morrow brought more fun, this time with hiphop star Sai Sai Kham Leng celebrating the Knorr Curry Kitchen Caravan ceremony at People s Park, followed by a star-bedecked evening at the 75 th anniversary of Nescafé at Inya Lake Hotel. Next day, she attended the gradu- ation ceremony of Edulink Australia, a Mysteri- ous Show event and Revlon s new cosmetics launch. Ma Thi Su Myat Noe Kyaw La Min Eain Ma Thandar Soe and U William Su Myat Noe Oo Ko Thant A Ngal Lay Giordano I Love MM contest Pho Cho Luminarc design launch Daw May Zin Soe Htet Ma Pan Ei and Ko Phyo Min Kyaw
51 the pulse travel 51 YANGON TO BANGKOK Flights Days Dep Arr PG 706 Daily 7:15 9:30 8M 335 Daily 8:20 10:05 TG 304 Daily 9:50 11:45 PG 702 Daily 10:30 12:25 TG 302 Daily 14:55 16:50 PG 708 Daily 15:20 17:15 8M 331 Daily 16:30 18:15 PG 704 Daily 18:20 20:15 Y5 237 Daily 18:05 19:50 TG 306 Daily 19:45 21:40 YANGON TO DON MUENG Flights Days Dep Arr DD ,3,5,7 8:00 9:45 FD 2752 Daily 8:30 10:20 FD 2756 Daily 12:15 14:05 FD 2754 Daily 17:50 19:35 YANGON TO SINGAPORE Flights Days Dep Arr MI 509/SQ ,2,6,7 0:25 5:00 8M 231 Daily 8:00 12:25 Y5 233 Daily 10:10 14:40 SQ 997/MI 5871 Daily 10:25 14:45 8M 6232 Daily 11:30 16:05 3K 586 Daily 11:40 16:20 MI 517/SQ 5017 Daily 16:40 21:15 TR ,6,7 15:10 19:35 TR ,3,4,5 17:10 21:35 YANGON TO KUALA LUMPUR Flights Days Dep Arr 8M 501 1,2,3,5,6 7:50 11:50 AK 1427 Daily 8:30 12:50 MH 741 Daily 12:15 16:30 MH 743 Daily 16:00 20:15 YANGON TO BEIJING Flights Days Dep Arr CA 906 2,3,4,6,7 14:15 21:55 YANGON TO GAUNGZHOU Flights Days Dep Arr 8M 711 2,4,7 8:40 13:15 CZ ,6 11:35 15:50 CZ ,5 17:40 22:15 YANGON TO TAIPEI Flights Days Dep Arr CI ,2,3,5,6 10:50 16:15 YANGON TO KUNMING Flights Days Dep Arr MU ,3 12:20 18:35 MU 2032 Daily 14:40 18:00 CA 906 2,3,4,6,7 14:15 17:35 YANGON TO CHIANG MAI Flights Days Dep Arr W ,7 14:20 16:10 YANGON TO HANOI Flights Days Dep Arr VN 956 1,3,5,6,7 19:10 21:30 YANGON TO HO CHI MINH CITY Flights Days Dep Arr VN 942 2,4,7 14:25 17:10 YANGON TO DOHA Flights Days Dep Arr QR 919 Daily 7:30 11:15 YANGON TO PHNOM PENH Flights Days Dep Arr 8M 403 1,3,6 8:35 12:30 YANGON TO SEOUL Flights Days Dep Arr 0Z 770 4,7 0:50 8:50 KE 472 Daily 23:35 08:05+1 YANGON TO HONG KONG Flights Days Dep Arr KA 251 1,2,4,6 01:10 05:35 YANGON TO TOKYO Flights Days Dep Arr NH 914 Daily 21:45 06:45+1 YANGON TO KOLKATA Flights Days Dep Arr AI 228 1,5 14:05 15:05 MANDALAY TO BANGKOK Flights Days Dep Arr TG ,2,4,6 9:30 11:45 TG ,5,7 19:35 21:45 PG 710 Daily 14:15 16:40 MANDALAY TO DON MUENG Flights Days Dep Arr FD 2761 Daily 12:45 15:00 International FLIGHT SCHEDULES MANDALAY TO KUNMING Flights Days Dep Arr MU 2030 Daily 14:40 17:20 BANGKOK TO YANGON Flights Days Dep Arr 8M 336 Daily 11:30 0:15 TG 303 Daily 7:55 8:50 PG 701 Daily 8:50 9:40 TG 301 Daily 13:00 13:45 PG 707 Daily 13:40 14:30 PG 703 Daily 16:45 17:35 TG 305 Daily 17:50 18:45 8M 332 Daily 19:15 20:00 PG 705 Daily 20:15 21:30 Y5 238 Daily 21:10 21:55 DON MUENG TO YANGON Flights Days Dep Arr DD ,3,5,7 6:30 7:15 FD 2751 Daily 7:15 8:00 FD 2755 Daily 11:10 11:45 FD 2753 Daily 16:35 17:20 SINGAPORE TO YANGON Flights Days Dep Arr SQ 998/MI 5872 Daily 7:55 9:20 3K 585 Daily 9:10 10:40 8M 6231 Daily 9:10 10:40 8M 232 Daily 13:25 14:50 TR ,6,7 13:10 14:30 MI 518/MI 5018 Daily 14:20 15:45 TR ,3,4,5 15:00 16:30 Y5 234 Daily 15:35 17:05 MI 520/SQ ,5,6,7 22:10 23:35 BEIJING TO YANGON Flights Days Dep Arr CA 905 2,3,4,6,7 8:05 13:15 KAULA LUMPUR TO YANGON Flights Days Dep Arr AK 1426 Daily 6:55 8:00 MH 740 Daily 10:05 11:15 8M 502 1,2,3,5,6 14:00 15:00 MH742 Daily 13:50 15:00 GUANGZHOU TO YANGON Flights Days Dep Arr CZ ,6 8:40 10:30 CZ ,5 14:45 16:35 8M 712 2,4,7 14:15 15:50 TAIPEI TO YANGON Flights Days Dep Arr CI ,2,3,5,6 7:00 9:55 KUNMING TO YANGON Flights Days Dep Arr MU ,3 8:20 11:30 CA 905 2,3,4,6,7 13:00 13:15 MU 2031 Daily 13:30 13:55 CHIANG MAI TO YANGON Flights Days Dep Arr W ,7 17:20 18:10 HANOI TO YANGON Flights Days Dep Arr VN 957 1,3,5,6,7 16:35 18:10 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 Arr TG ,2,4,6 7:25 8:50 TG ,5,7 17:30 18:45 PG 709 Daily 12:05 13:25 DOHA TO YANGON Flights Days Dep Arr QR 918 Daily 21:15 6:29 PHNOM PENH TO YANGON Flights Days Dep Arr 8M 404 1,3,6 13:30 14:55 SEOUL TO YANGON Flights Days Dep Arr KE 471 Daily 18:40 22:30 0Z 769 3,6 19:30 23:40 TOKYO TO YANGON Flights Days Dep Arr NH 913 Daily 11:45 17:15 HONG KONG TO YANGON Flights Days Dep Arr KA 250 1,3,5,7 21:50 23:45 KOLKATA TO YANGON Flights Days Dep Arr AI 227 1,5 10:35 13:20 DON MUEANG TO MANDALAY Flights Days Dep Arr FD 2760 Daily 10:50 12:15 KUNMING TO MANDALAY Flights Days Dep Arr MU 2029 Daily 13:55 13:50 International Airlines Air Asia (FD) Tel: , Air Bagan Ltd.(W9) Tel : , , , Fax : Air China (CA) Tel : , Air India Tel : ~98, Fax: Bangkok Airways (PG) Tel: , , Fax: Condor (DE) Tel: up to 39 (ext : 810) Dragonair (KA) Tel: , , Fax : Golden Myanmar Airlines (Y5) Tel: , , Fax: Malaysia Airlines (MH) Tel : , ext : 120, 121, 122 Fax : Myanmar Airways International(8M) Tel : , Fax: Silk Air(MI) Tel: ~9, Fax: Thai Airways (TG) Tel : ~6, Fax : Vietnam Airlines (VN) Fax : Tel / / Qatar Airways (Temporary Office) Tel: , (ext: 8142, 8210) International 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 Subject to change without notice Day 1 = Monday 2 = Tuesday 3 = Wednesday 4 = Thursday 5 = Friday 6 = Saturday 7 = Sunday PALAU A novelist s home in the South Pacific Makiko Yanada PALM trees line the streets under a broad blue sky in Palau, an island country in the South Pacific, which was briefly home to Japanese author Atsushi Nakajima. Nakajima was born in 1909 in Tokyo, the son of a Chinese classics teacher. After earning a degree in Japanese literature at the University of Tokyo, Nakajima taught Japanese and other subjects at a girls high school in Yokohama for eight years. Nakajima lived in Palau as an official of the South Pacific Mandate, a Japanese government agency. He was deeply fond of the people of Palau and depicted them positively in his work. The people of Palau retain many memories of Japan s colonial rule. On the island of Koror, home to more than half of Palau s total population of about 20,000 people, a group of elderly women played with hanafuda Japanese playing cards at a meeting hall. We learned that at a school [the] Japan[ese] built, said Nina, 83, in Japanese, as she made a basket near the women playing hanafuda. Rechuld, a 33-year-old police academy student, said Japanese words such as senkyo (election) and shidosha (leader) are still used on Palau. Japan occupied Micronesia, which was then German territory, in 1914, the first year of World War I. In 1915, Japan set up schools to teach local children the Japanese language. In 1922, the Japanese government established the headquarters of the South Pacific Mandate, which had jurisdiction over all of Micronesia. The administration continued until Japan s defeat in World War II. Nakajima arrived on the island in July 1941 to work as the colonial government s official in charge of supervising Japanese language textbooks. He was unknown as a novelist at that time and took the job so he could write in a tropical climate, which would be better for his asthma. At that time, however, Japan was preparing for war against the United States, and began drafting local residents and constructing military facilities. Nakajima complained to his wife in letters, We ve gradually become unable to give [the local people] enough food and housing ; and, Making little changes in textbooks is meaningless at a time like this. When he returned to Japan in March 1942, he devoted himself to writing, as if attempting to shake off the depression he felt in Palau. His health deteriorated, but during the nine months before his death, Nakajima wrote one masterpiece after another, including Riryo and Deshi (Apprentice), both of which were based on classical Chinese stories. Nakajima also compiled an anthology of short stories called Nantotan (Stories of Southern islands), which were stories based on the legends, people and cuisine of the Southern Pacific islands, including Palau. In one of his works, Nakajima wrote about the atmosphere of the island, saying, Is the word time in the vocabulary of this island? After Nakajima s death, Koror and other Palauan islands became battlefields in World War II. Amalei, a 78-year-old woman who experienced the air strikes, said in Japanese, The war was a special circumstance. I don t think badly of Japan. Today, there is almost no one on the island who knows about Nakajima. Even Yutaka Gibbons, 69, whose mother is said to be the model for a character in Nakajima s short story set on the island, asked in a surprised tone, Was my mother really depicted in a novel? I learned that Nakajima had told his wife he liked the people on the island. What would he think if he saw the islanders still had connections to Japanese language and culture even after the war? As he was a novelist who had collected many ideas for his future stories, he might have written a masterpiece infused with the warmth of the southern islands and the sorrows of people living there. The Yomiuri Shimbun Women play with Japanese playing cards and sing Japanese songs in Koror, a town in the South Pacific country of Palau. Photo: Makiko Yanada
52 52 the pulse THE MYANMAR TIMES December 2-8, 2013 WEEKLY predictions december 2-8, 2013 Aquarius Jan 20 - Feb 18 Explore what it means to pay attention to your truths, inner and outer. Life s ups and downs provide windows of opportunity to determine your true values and goals. Relating your interests to your enduring life purposes reveals your destiny. Use obstacles as stepping stones to build the life you want. Find an incentive to open up your emotions. Leo Jul 23 - Aug 22 Management skills in positions of authority have made you good at making decisions. What needs to be settled is what kind of an influencer you will be? You can make a difference tomorrow by becoming a better leader today. You must try to skilfully weave your persuasive magic in the global arena, where governments and mega-corporation meet. Do not ride the No 17 bus. Jennifer Lawrence stars in the The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. Photo: The Washington Post Catching Fire : The star shines brightest Pisces Feb 19 - March 20 Follow the high-spirited few who meet the unknown effectively. You can devise a personal strategy of entrepreneurship, though for true fulfilment you must meet yourself honestly. Learn to persist in the face of setbacks, profiting from them to build up your wisdom. Ask yourself: What s worth doing? Never become disconnected from the routines and structure of your usual life in connection with love. Virgo Aug 23 - Sep 22 A vice is nothing more than a virtue turned inside out, misapplied or used in the wrong context. Learning about love through trial and error, you can find contentment in stabilising your surroundings according to your beliefs. If your personal transformation and reinvention follows your own rules, you can gaze with wonder at a study of heartfelt things. Ann Hornaday SHE S done, she s lovely, we must feed the monster. That s Effie Trinket (Elizabeth Banks), publicity maven and doyenne of sadistic mayhem in The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, as she prepares the series heroine, Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence), to meet her adoring public. Fans will remember that Katniss and her fellow tribute Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) have just won the 74 th Hunger Games, the gruesome Darwinian ritual designed to pacify and terrorise the citizens of Panem, a grim futuristic society that s one part ancient Rome, one part fascist Germany and one part fin de siècle France. As Catching Fire gets underway, Katniss and Peeta are touring the benighted districts of Panem, where a restive populace is spoiling for revolution. Urged on by the evil President Snow (Donald Sutherland), they ratchet up their ginned-up romance, distracting the starving, impoverished masses with hints of a wedding and, just maybe, an impending baby bump. Despite their obvious historical allusions, the Hunger Games films based on the cult hit series of novels by Suzanne Collins are very much about America today, from the consumerist decadence and obscene disparities in wealth enjoyed by Panem s smug one percent to a reality-show culture of competition that s been taken to murderous extremes. Taking its cue as much from Project Runway as from Survivor, Collins universe is one in which couture dresses carry as much meaning and empowerment as weaponry: In this installment, it s a full hour-and-a-half before Katniss embarks on a new set of games, providing lots of time for her to simmer angrily at the injustices she witnesses. Filming in icy blues and greys, Lawrence evokes the despair of Katniss world back home, where jack-booted thugs (aka Peacekeepers ) routinely whip, torture and shoot dissenters. Keenly aware of the adolescent audience, Lawrence always manages to look away before the violence becomes too icky. Once Katniss, Peeta and their fellow competitors reach the giant terrarium that serves as their latest arena they face a series of desert island risks that include toxic fog, squalls of blood, explosive lightning and a tribe of the most terrifying monkeys since The Wizard of Oz. A new, more mysterious figure has also appeared on the scene: Plutarch Heavensbee, a malevolent game designer played with rumpled seriousness by Philip Seymour Hoffman. As has already been proved in the Marvel Avengers series, having such genuinely accomplished actors channel such outlandish fantasy makes all the difference. Everyone hits their marks with gusto and believability in Catching Fire even Liam Hemsworth, who has next to nothing to do as Katniss hometown squeeze, Gale. But the engine of the entire operation is Lawrence, who in Katniss has found a character that chimes perfectly with her own persona as an earthy, blunt-speaking ingenue suddenly thrust into a world of celebrity and media-fuelled idol worship. Somehow managing to look like a real flesh-and-blood girl even in Catching Fire s most bizarre tableaux, Lawrence is never less than compelling, her rounded cheeks suggesting innocence but her sharp, alert gaze suggesting otherwise, whether she s aiming her notorious bow and arrow or scrutinising Cinna s latest incendiary creation. Much like the young heroine she doesn t play as much as inhabit from the inside out, Lawrence is a force of nature. Even viewers who watch Catching Fire unwillingly won t be able to resist her gravitational pull, which in her case isn t a function of conventional movie-star looks, but character and command presence. Her final, steely stare at the camera says it all, suggesting an actress fully equipped and ready to navigate her brave, often depraved, new world. I ve got this, the look seems to say. The monster must be fed. The Washington Post Yangon prepares for the Academy Awards Lwin Mar htun MYANMAR S Academy Awards are set to go ahead in Yangon despite earlier concerns the ceremony would steal the limelight from the 27 th SEA Games, scheduled for around the same time. The awards will be held at Yangon s Thuwunna Indoor Stadium after December 29 so as not to clash with the Games, said U Aye Kyu Lay, a spokesperson from the Myanmar Motion Picture Organization. When we applied to get the permit, we weren t sure we would get it because the Games needed to use the stadium as well, said U Aye Kyu Lay. Now, we ve got the permit so we will announce the exact date after consulting with our industry peers. Traditionally the MMPO and the government arranged every Photo: Ko Taik Actress and model, Thandar Hlaing, attends the Myanmar Academy Awards 2011 in Nay Pyi Daw. logistical facet of the awards, but this year they are outsourcing to private business to help with the event management. We have chosen the international Barco Company to assist with the project management, U Aye Kyu Lay told The Myanmar Times. We made the decision on November 26 that Barco, which also specialises in digital technology, will take the lead in organising. Barco will also be responsible for inviting celebrities from abroad. The Academy judging board has selected the top seven film finalists, selected out of 15 films made in The Myanmar Academy Awards were held in Yangon from 1952, until 2006 when they moved to Nay Pyi Taw. But after complaints from media and celebrities about the difficulty of Nay Pyi Taw as a location (and because Myanmar s film industry is based in Yangon), it was agreed the awards would be moved back this year. Aries Mar 21 - Apr 19 Mental imagery is very powerful. The secret to using imagery is to develop as vivid a scenario as possible. Look for opportunities to recognise the ideas and successes of others, and pick up on the suggestions made by others and support them. Become involved in spare-time activities that are rewarding and provide recognition. Try to see both sides of the question in emotional problems. Taurus Apr 20 - May 20 Deepen your appreciation of abstract values like beauty or justice, or some other esteemed quality. You will be activated by your inner truths and talents, drawing forth meaning and pleasure. Sharpen your powers of attention, and strive to serve as a focus for values that leave you cool and refreshed. Be sure to accept good changes in your love life. Gemini May 21 - June 20 How you think about yourself and how you want others to see you, without emotional attachment, depends on the variation in intellectual level between you and others. Financial obligations beyond your personal power to discharge will ease. Now is the time for clarity as to what you want in love and in a partner. Be still, and search your heart. Cancer Jun 21 - Jul 22 You will be lucky in speculation, especially with residential property or hotels and restaurants, and waterside properties will allure you always. You need to develop self-esteem and feelings of self-worth if you are to realise your greatest financial potential. Aware that you provide for others, strive not to be hampered in your attempts to lead and guide them by wit. Libra Sep 23 - Oct 22 Your aesthetic sense, civilising instinct and petty urges of the soul serve to beautify the world. Your ability to see and love another person s point of view is a virtuous power to change everything in harmony. Learn more about spiritual laws that can make relationships bearable and enjoyable. Take enough time to solve social problems, and remain involved in your love life. Scorpio Oct 23 - Nov 21 Capricorn Dec 22 - Jan 19 AUNG MYIN KYAW 4 th Floor, 113, Thamain Bayan Road, Tarmwe township, Yangon. Tel: , Don t be secretive in nature at all times, and know that it is good to show your simple natural character. Money is a transforming power sometimes, not always, so don t be interested in money for that reason. You can be overly awed by the power of money to the point where you think wrongly that money rules the world. Your financial status will depend on your abilities. Sagittarius Nov 22 - Dec 21 Keep your social focus clear and you should broaden your intellectual range to apply it to all aspects of today and tomorrow. You must learn to set limits and reach targets through a series of attainable points or objectives. A long-drawn-out process may be difficult for you, but cosmic changes will make your fortune safe. Don t forget your umbrella. Your habit of arguing with success and ignoring reasonable factors can make you disgraceful and ugly. Sorry, but someone had to say it. You need to learn the worth of the socially adaptable nature in order to fulfil your highest aspirations. Cultivate your social graces to develop a style charged with charm, and an ability to get along with people, however vile. Do not plumb the depths of introversion, but seek to establish a good balance with your own counsel.
53 EMBASSIES Australia 88, Strand Road, Yangon. Tel : , , Bangladesh 11-B, Than Lwin Road, Yangon. Tel: , , mptmail.net.mm Brazil 56, Pyay Road, 6 th mile, Hlaing Tsp, Yangon. Tel: , Administ. Brunei 17, Kanbawza Avenue, Golden Velly (1), Bahan Tsp, Yangon. Tel: , bruneiemb.com.mm Cambodia 25 (3B/4B), New University Avenue Road, Bahan Tsp, Yangon. Tel: , mptmail.net.mm China 1, Pyidaungsu Yeiktha Road, Yangon. Tel: , Danmark, No.7, Pyi Thu St, Pyay Rd, 7 Miles, Mayangone Tsp, Yangon. Tel: Egypt 81, Pyidaungsu Yeiktha Road, Yangon. Tel: , , gmail.com France 102, Pyidaungsu Yeiktha Road, Yangon. Tel: , , ambaf rance. diplomatie.fr Germany 9, Bogyoke Aung San Museum Road, Bahan Tsp, Yangon. Tel: , , diplo.de India , Merchant St, Yangon. Tel: , , mptmail.net.mm Indonesia 100, Pyidaungsu Yeiktha Rd, Yangon. Tel: , , , fax: , indonesia.com.mm The Essentials Israel 15, Khabaung Street, Hlaing Tsp, Yangon. Tel: , fax: , yangon.mfa.gov.il Italy 3, Inya Myaing Road, Golden Valley, Yangon. Tel: , , fax: , ambyang. esteri.it Japan 100, Natmauk Rd, Yangon. Tel: , , , , , fax: Embassy of the State of Kuwait Chatrium Hotel, Rm: 416, 418, 420, 422, 40 Natmauk Rd, Tarmwe Tsp, Tel: North Korea 77C, Shin Saw Pu Rd, Sanchaung Tsp, Yangon. Tel: , South Korea 97 University Avenue, Bahan Tsp, Yangon. Tel: , , fax: , go.kr Lao A-1, Diplomatic Quarters, Tawwin Road, Dagon Tsp, Yangon. Tel: , fax: , mptmail. net.mm Malaysia 82, Pyidaungsu Yeiktha Road, Yangon. Tel: , , mptmail.net.mm Nepal 16, Natmauk Yeiktha, Yangon. Tel: , , fax: , Norway, No.7, Pyi Thu St, Pyay Rd, 7 Miles, Mayangone Tsp,Yangon. Tel: Fax New Zealand No. 43/C, Inya Myaing Rd, Bahan Tsp, Yangon. Tel : Netherlands Diplomatic Mission No. 43/C, Inya Myaing Rd, Bahan Tsp, Yangon. Tel : Pakistan A-4, diplomatic Quarters, Pyay Rd, Yangon. Tel: (Chancery Exchange) Philippines 50, Sayasan Rd, Bahan Tsp, Yangon. Tel: , p.e. Russian 38, Sagawa Rd, Yangon. Tel: , , Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia No.287/289, U Wisara Rd, Sanchaung. Tel : , Serbia No. 114-A, Inya Rd, P.O.Box No. 943, Yangon. Tel: , , yangon.net.mm Singapore 238, Dhamazedi Road, Bahan Tsp, Yangon. Tel: , singemb_ sgmfa. gov.sg Sri Lanka 34 Taw Win Road, Yangon. Tel: , The Embassy of Switzerland No 11, Kabaung Lane, 5 ½ mile, Pyay Rd, Hlaing Tsp, Yangon. Tel: , , Fax: , Ext: 110 Thailand 94 Pyay Rd, Dagon Tsp, Yangon. Tel: , , Turkish Embassy 19AB, Kan Yeik Thar St, Mayangone Tsp,Yangon. Tel : , Fax : United Kingdom 80 Strand Rd, Yangon. Tel: , , , , , United States of America 110, University Avenue, Kamayut Tsp, Yangon. Tel: , , Fax: Vietnam Bldg-72, Thanlwin Rd, Bahan Tsp, Yangon. Tel: UNITED NATIONS ILO Liaison 1-A, Kanbae (Thitsar Rd), Yankin Tsp, Yangon, Myanmar. Tel : , IOM 12th Flr, Traders Hotel, 223, Tel: ext UNAIDS 137/1, Thaw Wun Rd, Kamayut Tsp. Tel : , UNDCP 11-A, Malikha St, Mayangone tsp. Tel: , UNDP 6, Natmauk Rd, Bahan tel: fax: UNFPA 6, Natmauk Rd, Bahan tsp. tel: UNHCR 287, Pyay Rd, Sanchaung tsp. Tel: , UNIAP Rm: 1202, 12 Fl, Traders Hotel. Tel: , UNIC 6, Natmauk St., Bahan, tel: 52910~19 UNICEF 14~15 Flr, Traders Hotel. P.O. Box 1435, Kyauktada. Tel: ~32, org, UNODC 11-A, Malikha Rd., Ward 7, Mayangone. tel: , , , UNOPS Inya Lake Hotel, 3 rd floor, 37, Kaba Aye Pagoda Rd, Mayangone Tsp. Tel: ~7. Fax: UNRC 6, Natmauk Rd, P.O. Box 650, TMWE Tel: ~19, (Resident Coordinator), WFP 3 rd -flr, Inya Lake Hotel, 37, Kabar Aye Pagoda Rd. Tel: ~6 (6-lines) Ext: WHO No. 2, Pyay Rd, 7 Mile, Mayangone Tsp, Tel : , , ASEAN Coordinating Of. for the ASEAN Humanitarian Task Force, 79, Taw Win st, Dagon Tsp. Tel: FAO Myanma Agriculture Service Insein Rd, Insein. tel: , fax: For more information about these listings, Please Contact - Ambulance tel: Fire tel: 191, , Police emergency tel: 199. Police headquarters tel: , Red Cross tel:682600, Traffic Control Branch tel: Department of Post & Telecommunication tel: , Immigration tel: Ministry of Education tel:545500m Ministry of Sports tel: , Ministry of Communications tel: Myanma Post & Telecommunication (MPT) tel: Myanma Post & Tele-communication (Accountant Dept) tel: , Ministry of Foreign Affairs tel: , Ministry of Health tel: Yangon City Development Committee tel: HOSPITALS Central Women s Hospital tel: , Children Hospital tel: , Ear, Nose & Throat Hospital tel: Naypyitaw Hospital (emergency) tel: Worker s Hospital tel: , , Emergency Numbers Yangon Children Hospital tel: , , Yangon General Hospital (East) tel: , , Yangon General Hospital (New) tel: , , , Yangon General Hospital (West) tel: , , Yangon General Hospital (YGH) tel: , , , ELECTRICITY Power Station tel: POST OFFICE General Post Office 39, Bo Aung Kyaw St. (near British Council Library). tel: INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT Yangon International Airport tel: YANGON PORT Shipping (Coastal vessels) tel: RAILWAYS Railways information tel: , ACCOMMODATION- HOTELS Asia Plaza Hotel YANGON No. 277, Bogyoke Aung San Road, Corner of 38 th Street, Kyauktada Township, Yangon, Myanmar. Tel : (951) , (Ext) 1910, 106. Fax : (951) Avenue 64 Hotel No. 64 (G), Kyitewine Pagoda Rd, Mayangone Tsp, Yangon. Tel : , Chatrium Hotel 40 Natmauk Rd, Tarmwe. tel: fax: No.7A, Wingabar Road, Bahan Tsp, Yangon. Tel : (951) , ~4. Fax : (01) Clover Hotel City Center No. 217, 32nd Street (Upper Block), Pabedan Tsp, Yangon, Myanmar. Tel : , Fax : Clover Hotel City Center Plus No. 229, 32nd Street (Upper Block), Pabedan Tsp, Yangon, Myanmar. Tel : , Fax : Confort Inn 4, Shweli Rd, Bet: Inya Rd & U Wisara Rd, Kamaryut, tel: , No. (356/366), Kyaikkasan Rd, Tamwe Township, Yangon, Myanmar. Ph: , Fax: edenpalacehotel.com M-22, Shwe Htee Housing, Thamine Station St., Near the Bayint Naung Point, Mayangone Tsp., Yangon Tel : , , Fax : (95-1) myanmar.com.mm No. 12, Pho Sein Road, Tamwe Township, Yangon Tel : (95-1) , , , , Fax : (95-1) myanmar.com.mm General Listing Hotel Yangon 91/93, 8 th Mile Junction, Tel : , Inya Lake Resort Hotel 37 Kabar Aye Pagoda Rd. tel: fax: No. 205, Corner of Wadan Street & Min Ye Kyaw Swa Road, Lanmadaw Tsp, Yangon. Myanmar. Tel: (95-1) ~ 3, ~ 61, Fax: (95-1) myanmarpandahotel.com Parkroyal Yangon, Myanmar 33, Alan Pya Pagoda Rd, Dagon tsp. tel: fax: parkroyalhotels.com parkroyalhotels. com. Royal White Elephant Hotel No-11, Kan Street, Hlaing Tsp. Yangon, Myanmar. (+95-1) , MGM Hotel No (160), Warden Street, Lanmadaw Tsp, Yangon, Myanmar ~9. www. hotel-mgm.com Savoy Hotel 129, Damazedi Rd, Kamayut tsp. tel: , , Sedona Hotel Kabar Aye Pagoda Rd, Yankin. tel: Strand Hotel 92 Strand Rd. tel: fax: Summit Parkview Hotel 350, Ahlone Rd, Dagon Tsp. tel: , Traders Hotel 223 Sule Pagoda Rd. tel: fax: Winner Inn 42, Than Lwin Rd, Bahan Tsp. Tel: , innmyanmar.com Windsor Hotel No.31, Shin Saw Pu Street, Sanchaung. Yangon, Myanmar. Ph: ~8, www. hotelwindsoryangon.com Yuzana Hotel 130, Shwegondaing Rd, Bahan Tsp, tel : Yuzana Garden Hotel 44, Alanpya Pagoda Rd, Mingalar Taung Nyunt Tsp, tel : ACCOMMODATION Long Term Happy Homes Real Estate & Property Management Tel: , gmail.com, happyhomesyangon.com Golden Hill Towers 24-26, Kabar Aye Pagoda Rd, Bahan Tsp. tel: mptmail.net.mm. Marina Residence 8, Kabar Aye Pagoda Rd, Mayangone Tsp. tel: ~4. fax: , Kabar Aye Pagoda Rd, Yankin Tsp. Tel: Fax: myanmar.com.mmwww. myanmar micasahotel.com ACCOMMODATION- HOTELS (Nay Pyi Taw) Reservation Office (Yangon) 123, Alanpya Pagoda Rd, Dagon Township Tel : ~838 Royal Kumudra Hotel, (Nay Pyi Taw) Tel : , maxhotelsgroup.com resorts AIR CONDITION (Nay Pyi Taw) Reservation Office (Yangon) 123, Alanpya Pagoda Rd, Dagon Township. Tel : Hotel Max (Chaung Tha Beach) Tel : , gmail.com The First Air conditioning systems designed to keep you fresh all day Zeya & Associates Co., Ltd. No.437 (A), Pyay Road, Kamayut. P., O Yangon, Tel: +(95-1) , Mandalay- Tel: Nay Pyi Taw- Tel: , com. URL: freshaircon.com Air Con Sales & Service No. 2/1, Than Thu Mar Rd, Thuwunna Junction. Tel : BARS 50 th Street 9/13, 50th street-lower, Botataung Tsp. Tel
54 THE MYANMAR TIMES december 2-8, 2013 CONSULTING co working space Engineering GAS COOKER & Cooker Hoods HEALTH SERVICES Green Garden Beer Gallery Mini Zoo, Karaweik Oo-Yin Kabar. Lobby Bar Parkroyal Yangon, Myanmar. 33, Alan Pya Phaya Road, Dagon Tsp. tel: Strand Bar 92, Strand Rd, Yangon, Myanmar. tel: fax: , Advertising WE STARTED THE ADVERTISING INDUSTRY IN MYANMAR SINCE 1991 Marketing & communications A d v e r t i s i n g SAIL Marketing & Communications Suite 403, Danathiha Center 790, Corner of Bogyoke Rd & Wadan Rd, Lanmadaw Township, Yangon, Myanmar. Tel: (951) , , advertising-myanmar.com com BEAUTY & MASSAGE Yangon La Source Beauty Spa 80-A, Inya Rd, Kamayut Tsp. Tel: , Beauty Bar by La Source Room (1004), Sedona Hotel, Tel : Ext : (7167) LS Salon Junction Square, 3rd Floor. Tel : , Ext : 4001 Mandalay La Source Beauty Spa No. 13/13, Mya Sandar St, Chanaye Tharzan Tsp. Tel : Marina Residence, Yangon Ph: ~4, Ext: 109 Beauty Plan, Corner of 77th St & 31st St, Mandalay Ph: Lemon Day Spa No. 96 F, Inya Road, Kamaryut Tsp, Yangon. Tel: , E.mail: No. 52, Royal Yaw Min Gyi Condo, Room F, Yaw Min Gyi Rd, Dagon Township, Yangon, Myanmar. Tel: Spa Paragon Condo B#Rm-106, Shwe Hinthar Condo, Corner of Pyay Rd & Shwe Hinthar St, 6½Mile, Yangon. Tel: Ext: 112, , BOOK STORES 150 Dhamazedi Rd., Bahan Tsp, Yangon. Tel: , monument-books.com 15(B), Departure Lounge, Yangon Int l Airport. #87/2, Crn of 26 th & 27 th St, 77 th St,Chan Aye Thar Zan Tsp, Mandalay. Tel : (02) MYANMAR BOOK CENTRE Nandawun Compound, No. 55, Baho Road, Corner of Baho Road and Ahlone Road, (near Eugenia Restaurant), Ahlone Township. tel: , fax: myanmarbook.com Myanmar Research Consulting Technology Shwe Hinthar B 307, 6 1/2 Miles, Pyay Rd., Yangon. Tel: +95 (0) car rental MYANMAR EXECUTIVE LIMOUSINE SERVICE HOT LINE: First Class VIP Limousine Car Rental. Professional English Speaking Drivers. Full Insurance for your Safety and comfortable journey Call us Now for your best choice Car Rental Service No. 56, Bo Ywe St, Latha Tsp, Yangon. Tel : , , , gmail.com, coffee machine illy, Francis Francis, VBM, Brasilia, Rossi, De Longhi Nwe Ta Pin Trading Co., Ltd. Shop C, Building 459 B New University Avenue , communication International Calling Card No.004, Building (B), Ground Floor, Yuzana St, Highway Complex Housing, Kamayut Township, Yangon, Myanmar. Tel : , ~2 mm No. (6), Lane 2 Botahtaung Pagoda St, Yangon , CONSTRUCTION Zamil Steel No-5, Pyay Road, 7½ miles, Mayangone Tsp, Yangon. Tel: (95-1) ~04. Fax: (95-1) zamilsteel.com.mm courier Service DTDC Courier and Cargo Service (Since 1991) Yangon. Tel : Mandalay. Tel : Door to Door Delivery!!! Duty free Duty Free Shops Yangon International Airport, Arrival/Departure Tel: (Ext: 206/155) Office: 17, 2 nd street, Hlaing Yadanarmon Housing, Hlaing Township, Yangon. Tel: , , ENTERTAINMENT Dance Club & Bar No.94, Ground Floor, Bogalay Zay Street, Botataung Tsp, Yangon.Tel: , danceclub. (Except Sunday) One-stop Solution for Sub-station, M&E Work Design, Supply and Install (Hotel, High Rise Building Factory) 193/197, Shu Khin Thar Street, North Okkalapa Industrial Zone, Yangon. Tel: ~5, , Fax: gmail.com. FASHION & TAILOR Sein Shwe Tailor, 797 (003-A), Bogyoke Aung San Rd, MAC Tower 2, Lanmadaw Tsp, Yangon, Ph: , ~4 Ext: 146, 147, FITNESS CENTRE Balance Fitnesss No 64 (G), Kyitewine Pagoda Road, Mayangone Township. Yangon , balancefitnessyangon.com Life Fitness Bldg A1, Rm No. 001, Shwekabar Housing, Mindhamma Rd, Mayangone Tsp. Yangon. Ph: , Fax: , Hot line: , No. 20, Ground Floor, Pearl Street, Golden Valley Ward, Bahan Township, Yangon. Tel : , , (Ext : 103) FLORAL SERVICES World s leader in Kitchen Hoods & Hobs Same as Ariston Water Heater. Tel: , , , Yangon : A-3, Aung San Stadium (North East Wing), Mingalartaungnyunt Tsp. Tel : , , Mandalay : No.(4) 73rd St, Btw 30th & 31st St, Chan Aye Thar Zan Tsp. Tel : , Gems & Jewelleries Get the Best Pure Natural Gemstones and Jewellery No. 44, Inya Road, Yangon, Myanmar. Tel : , myanmar.com, Bestjewelsmyanmar.com Ruby & Rare Gems of Myanamar No. 527, New University Ave., Bahan Tsp. Yangon. Tel: , Fax : The Lady Gems & Jewellery No. 7, Inya Rd, Kamayut Tsp, Yangon, Myanmar. Tel : , The Lady Gems & Silk Co operative Business Centre, Room No (32/41), New University Avenue Rd, Bahan Tsp, Yangon. Tel : Your Most Reliable Jeweller 98(A), Kaba Aye Pagoda Road, Bahan Township, Yangon. Tel: , , , Fax: asiapacific. One Stop ENT Center No. (68), Tawwin Street, 9 Mile, Mayangone Tsp, Yangon, Myanmar. Tel : (951) Fax : (951) Website : 24 hours Cancer centre No. (68), Tawwin Street, 9 Mile, Mayangone Township, Yangon. Tel : (951) Fax : (951) hours Laboratory & X-ray No. (68), Tawwin Street, 9 Mile, Mayangone Tsp, Yangon, Myanmar. Tel : (951) Fax : (951) Hour International Medical Victoria Hospital No. 68, Tawwin Rd, 9 Mile, Mayangon Township, Yangon, Myanmar Tel: , Fax: /7 on duty doctor: Website: One Stop Solution for Quality Health Care Floral Service & Gift Shop No. 449, New University Avenue, Bahan Tsp. YGN. Tel: , , Market Place By City Mart Tel: ~43, ~46, Ext: 205. Junction Nay Pyi Taw Tel: ~ ~15, Ext: 235. Res: , mptmail.net.mm The Natural Gems of Myanmar & Fine Jewellery. No. 30(A), Pyay Road, (7 mile), Mayangone Tsp, Yangon, Myanmar. Tel : , GENERATORS No. (68), Tawwin Street, 9 Mile, Mayangone Tsp, Yangon, Myanmar. Tel : (951) Fax : (951) Website : Home Furnishing Floral Service & Gift Centre 102(A), Dhamazaydi Rd, Yangon.tel: Summit Parkview Hotel, tel: , ext. 173 fax: sandymyanmar.com.mm. Foam spray Insulation No , Bo Aung Kyaw St, Yangon-Pathein highway Road. Hlaing Tharyar tsp. Tel: , , Fax: , winstrategic.com.mm GLASS 22, Pyay Rd, 9 mile, Mayangone Tsp. tel: , Bldg-D, Rm (G-12), Pearl Condo, Ground Flr, Kabaraye Pagoda Rd, Bahan Tsp. Tel: Ext 814, Foam Spray Insulation No-410, Ground Fl,Lower Pazuntaung Rd, Pazun taung Tsp, Yangon.Telefax : , Hot Line International Construction Material Co., S.B. Ltd. FURNITURE No. 60, Sint-Oh-Dan St, Lower Block, Latha Tsp, Yangon, Myanmar. Tel : , , , S.B. FURNITURE No , Dagon Tower, Ground Flr, Cor of Kabaraye Pagoda Rd & Shwe Gon Dine Rd, Bahan Tsp. Tel: ,
55 december 2-8, 2013 THE MYANMAR TIMES Office Furniture European Quality & Designs Indoor/ Outdoor Furniture, Hotel Furniture & All kinds of woodworks No. 422, FJVC Centre, Ground Floor, Room No. 4, Strand Road, Botahtaung Tsp, Yangon, Myanmar. Tel: , smartdesignstrading.com Marine Communication & Navigation Bld-A2, Gr-Fl, Shwe Gabar Housing, Mindama Rd, Mayangone Tsp, Yangon. myanmar.com.mm Ph: , Open Daily (9am to 6pm) No. 797, MAC Tower II, Rm -4, Ground Flr, Bogyoke Aung San Rd, Lamadaw Tsp, Yangon. Tel: (951) Ext: 303 gmail.com Top Marine Show Room No-385, Ground Floor, Lower Pazundaung Road, Pazundaung Tsp, Yangon. Ph: , MEDIA & ADVERTISING Bldg-A2, G-Flr, Shwe Gabar Housing, Mindama Rd, Mayangone Tsp, Yangon. myanmar.com.mm Ph: , LEGAL SERVICE Media & Advertising All the way from Australia. Design for advertisement is not easy, reaching to target audience is even harder? We are equipped with great ideas and partners in Myanmar to create corporate logo, business photography, stationery design, mobile advertisement on public transport and billboard/ magazine ads. Talk to us: (01) , (0) com.au Paint World s No.1 Paints & Coatings Company Sole Distributor For the Union of Myanmar Since 1995 Myanmar Golden Rock International Co.,Ltd. #06-01, Bldg (8), Myanmar ICT Park, University Hlaing Campus, Hlaing Tsp, Yangon. Tel: ~17. U Min Sein, BSc, RA, CPA.,RL Advocate of the Supreme Court 83/14 Pansodan St, Yangon. tel: PLEASURE CRUISES Moby Dick Tours Co., Ltd. Islands Safari in the Mergui Archipelago 5 Days, 7 Days, 9 Days Trips Tel: , mergui.com. Website: www. islandsafarimergui.com Road to Mandalay Myanmar Hotels & Cruises Ltd. Governor s Residence 39C, Taw Win Rd, Dagon Tsp, Yangon. Tel: (951) fax: (951) REAL ESTATE SCHOOLS Sai Khung Noung Real Estate Co., Ltd. Tel : , , , saikhungnoung Legendary Myanmar Int l Shipping & Logistics Co., Ltd. No-9, Rm (A-4), 3rd Flr, Kyaung St, Myaynigone, Sanchaung Tsp, Yangon. Tel: , , Mobile mptmail.net.mm Relocation Specialist Rm 504, M.M.G Tower, #44/56, Kannar Rd, Botahtaung Tsp. Tel: , Mail : Crown Worldwide Movers Ltd 790, Rm 702, 7th Flr Danathiha Centre, Bogyoke Aung San Rd, Lanmadaw. Tel: , , ext: 702. Fax: crown Schenker (Thai) Ltd. Yangon 59 A, U Lun Maung Street. 7 Mile Pyay Road, MYGN. tel: , fax: sche Bo Sun Pat Tower, Bldg 608, Rm 6(B), Cor of Merchant Rd & Bo Sun Pat St, PBDN Tsp. Tel: , , , , Your Most Reliable & Friendly Real Estate Agency Tel : , International Construction Material Co., Ltd. No. 60, Sint-Oh-Dan St, Lower Block, Latha Tsp, Yangon, Myanmar. Tel : , , , Real Estate Agent Agent fees is unnecessary Tel : , Real Estate Agency gmail.com Tel : , Monsoon Restaurant & Bar 85/87, Thein Byu Road, Botahtaung Tsp. Tel: , Horizon Int l School 25, Po Sein Road, Bahan Tsp, tel : , , , ~7. fax : , com, REMOVALISTS RESTAURANTS TOP MARINE PAINT No-410, Ground Floor, Lower Pazundaung Road, Pazundaung Tsp, Yangon. Ph: No.430(A), Corner of Dhamazedi Rd & Golden Valley Rd, Building(2) Market Place (City Mart), Bahan Tsp, Yangon. Tel : (Ext-309), Quality Chinese Dishes with Resonable by City Mart. Tel: Ext.109 Heaven Pizza 38/40, Bo Yar Nyunt St. Yaw Min Gyi Quarter, Dagon Township. Tel: World famous Kobe Beef Near Thuka Kabar Hospital on Pyay Rd, Marlar st, Hlaing Tsp. Tel: Kohaku Japanese Restaurant Chatrium Hotel Royal Lake Yangon 40, Natmauk Road, Tamwe Tsp, Lobby Level, Tel: Ext 6231 Ocean Center (North Point), Ground Floor, Tel : Delicious Hong Kong Style Food Restaurant G-09, City Mart (Myay Ni Gone Center). Tel: Ext: 114 Indian Fine Dining & Bar Bldg No. 12, Yangon Int l Compound, Ahlone Road. Tel: , , The Ritz Exclusive Lounge Chatrium Hotel Royal Lake Yangon. 40, Natmauk Rd, Tamwe Tsp, Ground Floor, Tel: Ext 6243, 6244 The Emporia Restaurant Chatrium Hotel Royal Lake Yangon 40, Natmauk Road, Tamwe Tsp. Lobby Level, Tel: Ext 6294 Enchanting and Romantic, a Bliss on the Lake 62 D, U Tun Nyein Road, Mayangon Tsp, Yangon Tel , Mob , Kaba Aye Pagoda Rd, Bahan Tsp. tel mptmail.net.mm WASABI : No.20-B, Kaba Aye Pagoda Rd, Yankin Tsp,(Near MiCasa), Tel; , Myaynigone (City Mart) Yankin Center (City Mart) UnionBarAndGrill 42 Strand Road, Botahtaung, Yangon. Tel: , Good taste & resonable Hotel Tel: , Ext: 32 G-05, Marketplace by City Mart. Tel: Ext: 105 a drink from paradise... available on International Hotel, No.330, Ahlone Rd, Dagon Tsp, Yangon. Tel: Singapore Cuisine Super One Super Market, Kyaikkasan Branch, No. 65, Lay Daung Kan Rd, Man Aung Qtr, Tamwe Tsp, Yangon. Tel : , No. 5, U Tun Nyein Street, Mayangone T/S, Yangon. Tel : , , lalchimiste. No. 372, Bogyoke Aung San Rd, Pabedan T/S, Yangon. Tel : , (Ext : 3027) myanmar.com.mm The Global leader in Water Heaters A/1, Aung San Stadium East Wing, Upper Pansodan Road. Tel: , , , Water Heater Yangon Int l School Fully Accredited K-12 International Curriculum with ESL support No.117,Thumingalar Housing, Thingangyun, Tel: , , , Made in Japan Same as Rinnai Gas Cooker and Cooker Hood Showroom Address WATER PROOFING service office Executive Serviced Offices Tel : International Construction Material Co., Ltd. No. 60, Sint-Oh-Dan St, Lower Block, Latha Tsp, Yangon, Myanmar. Tel : , , , Water solution Fully Scoped Services Convenient Location Superb facility Reasonable price 1km from Sakura Tower Tel : Aekar Company Limited Water Treatement Solution Block (A), Room (G-12), Pearl Condo, Kabar Aye Pagoda Rd, Bahan Tsp. Hot Line : Water Treatment (ENG) (JPN) No. (6), Lane 2 Botahtaung Pagoda St, Yangon , Commercial scale water treatment (Since 1997) Tel: ~38. H/P: , B, Thazin Lane, Ahlone. WEB SERVICE TRAVEL AGENTS Asian Trails Tour Ltd 73 Pyay Rd, Dagon tsp. tel: , fax: asiantrails.com.mm Shan Yoma Tours Co.,Ltd SUPERMARKETS G-01, City Mart (Myay Ni Gone Center). Tel: Ext: 106 Water Heaters Capital Hyper Mart 14(E), Min Nandar Road, Dawbon Tsp. Ph: City Mart (Aung San Branch) tel: , City Mart (47th St Branch) tel: , City Mart (Junction 8) tel: City Mart (FMI City Branch) tel: City Mart (Yankin Center Branch) tel: City Mart (Myaynigone Branch) tel: City Mart (Zawana Branch) tel: Web Services All the way from Australia. World-class websites, come with usability and responsiveness. Our works include website, web apps, e-commerce, forum, campaign and online advertisement. Plus, we re the authorised reseller for local and international domain names. So, put your worries aside and let us create the awesomeness you deserved online. (01) , (0) com.au VISA & IMMIGRATION Get your Visa online for Business and Tourist No need to come to Embassy. # th Street, Kyauktada Tsp, Yangon. Tel: ,
56 FREE HOW TO GET A FREE AD By Fax : By By Mail : 379/383, Bo Aung Kyaw St, Kyauktada Township, Yangon. General HOW TO GET MORE BUSINESS FROM AS LITTLE AS K.5,000. Buy space ON THESE PAGES Call: Khin Mon Mon Yi , Property Computer HIGHLIGHT Computer Group : Computer Training & Software Development - 26, Myoh Thit (1) St, Kyauk Myaung, Tamwe, Yangon. Ph: , Computer Service Group:Window Installation, Software Installation. Server Installation (DHCP, AD, ISA, Handy Cafe). CPE & Router Configuration. Network Cable Installation. Ph: Education English Classes For both young learners & adult, Good foundation in Grammar, Good foundation in English, General English-4 skills, Business English-4 skills, Vocabulary enrichment course. Intensive classes only & no home visit. Ba Yint Naung Tower 1, Ground Floor, Room - C&D, Kamaryut Township, Yangon. Contact - Ph: , gmail: com. FOR PRIMARY Student : English, Maths, Myanmar, Geography, History, Science, Social, English Language. If you need to coach your child. Please do contact at Teacher Caroline : gamil.com WANT TO LEARN English? Learn English with native speaker! -4 skills, Business English, IELTS graduation, IELTS foundation, Custom Program. We are going to open our new intake at 2th of December and offer 20,000 kyats Discount. Contact our Friendly Customer Service Officers for complete information. Ph: , , , edulinkaustralia.com. Add : Bldg 6, Junction Square, Kamaryut, Yangon. HOME Tution & Guide : For pre - KG, Primary & secondary level. Specialized in Maths & Biology. Tr. Daw Khin Swe Win (B.E.H.S Thuwunna) Rtd. Ph: , Teaching English : English for young learners and adults. English for oversea travel, study, workplace or social purpose. Business English, Basic English, Everyday English, Communicative English. Taught by experienced and qualified teacher. Taught in abroad for a few years. Effective lessons, International Learning materials, Refresh, develop and practise English. Ms Si Si - Ph: Special for Math : For Int'l school (ILBC, ISY, ISM & YIS) Geometry, Algebra, Calculus. Tr. Kaung Myat - BE (PE), Guide&Leacturer. Ph: Teaching English, English for Young Learners and High School Graduates. English for social, study, overseas travel and work. General English course. Qualified and experienced teacher. Using International Syllabuses. Available for small groups or Individuals. Ph: (01) , Willingly give a helping hand to those who are still difficult to answer ABE question papers of Business Management ( Graduate Diploma) for December exams. Pls contact: give your child the best possible start to life at Int'l Montessori Myanmar (English Education Center) Accredited by IMC Bangkok (Since 1991), Our Montessori curriculum includes: Practical life Exercises, Sensorial training, language development, Mathematics, Cultural studies, Botany & Zoology, History, Creative Art, Music and Movement, Cooking, Physical Development, Social & Emotional Development. Learning through play. 55(B), Po Sein Rd, Bahan, Yangon, Tel: , , For IGCSE (Edexcel & Campridge) & Secondary level Regular tuition classes Home tuition Exam preparation classes All subjects available Contact: LCCI, Level I, II & III, MYOB. Ph: English literature & language arts for middle school in touch with SAT. setting.plot.maintheme writing.all kinds of student can be learnt. U Thant Zin, 28,3 B, Thatipahtan St, Tamwe. Ph: , shaping the way Teachers who have got Teaching experience in Singapore, Int'l School (primary & seconday levels) AEIS, PSLE, GCSE, SAT, IELTS, TOEFL, English-Myamar Speaking Class for company, Sayar Bryan, (ME) "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, MIS, MLA, ES4E, DSY RV). All grades, All Subjects... Singapore MOE Exams (AEIS, S-AEIS, IGCSE, IELTS, TOFEL..Tr.Daniel Caulin : Tr.Bryan : Expert Services Aung Professional Translation Professional Translation from Myanmar to English & English to Myanmar. For legal Translation, Technological, Diplomatic, Contract, Advertising, Movie, Literature, etc. With Various Services on paper, electronic file, recording & other relevant matters. both regular and express with expert service. No139, 2nd Flr, Bargayar Rd, Sanchaung, Yangon. Ph: ,aung. For Foreigners: Want to Business Communicative skill in Myanmar. Pls contact : To consult how to buy Insurance Coverages, Insurance for your cars, Insurance for your homes, Insurance for your showrooms, Insurance for your factories, Insurance for your stocks & other contents, Insurance for your employees, Insurance for yourself and your families, I'll be there, Ko Nyi, Insurance Agent : Licence No. A-1394, Ph: Car Insurance, Home Insurance, Life Insurance, Personal Accident and Disease Insurance, Maine Hull Insurance, Marine Cargo Insurance Interpretation/ Translation Service : For INGOs workshops; Power Points; Documents; Reports; Research Papers. Call: A SEASONED account ing prefessional with more than 13 years of experience in various industries. Can provide below services in compliance with international accounting standards. (1)Financial statements preparation (profit & loss) (2) Financial statements/ performance analysis (3)Strategic planing (budgeting/forecasting) (4)Implementation of internal controls (5) Preparation for external auditor (6)Development standardized accounting procedures. Daw Thin Thin Aung, Accounting Consultant, Ph: WE are the one of service Aera 51 group Real - Estate. Who want to buy, sell & rent for house, Condo & Industry zone. Contact ph: , For Sale 99% New Samsung Series 5 Ultra Book Intel Core i5 Ram 8GB H.D.D + SSD Display Year 6 Month International Warranty Price : Ph : Toyota IQ akhs Push Start. Mileage Contact , Macbook Pro 13" Retina Display Intel Core i5 Ram 8GB S.S.D 128GB Mac OS Price : Ph : MSI Board P4 Dual Core CPU 3.2 ghz Ram 2 Gb Hdd 500 GB VGA 512 MB DVD RW (ASUS) Viewsonic 19 ' UPS Green Tech 650 W. Ph: Samsung Galaxy S4 / S3 / S2 / Grand / Note 1, 2 HTC One / Butterfly Sony Z / SP / S / P. Ph : iphone 5S/5/4/4S. Ph : Intel Core i5 Ram 8GB H.D.D + SSD Display Year 6 Month International Warranty. Price : 580,000. Ph : Macbook Pro 13" Intel Core 2 Duo Ram 4GB H.D.D 750GB Mac OS Windown 7. Price : 599,000. Ph : HTC One Silver Color With Original Accessories. Price : Ph : Toyota IQ (2008) 2 Door, Push Start (keyless) Gold Silver colour. prices 135 Lakhs. Ph: Huawei P1 U9200 white 98%new,price Ks, contact : General if you are thinking to give a book-gift to your loved ones. Meiji Soe's "Culture & Beyond - Myanmar" is a unique of its king revealing Myanmar Culture, Beliefs and Superstitions in sector by sector together with photos. Available at Book Stores & MCM Ltd. Ph: , , myanmartimes.com.mm SHWE KYIN Slipper shop, Yangon. Ph: ext 333, Language FOR FOREIGNERS Want to learn Myanmar speaking at your home? Contact : , 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 Development, Mathematics, Cultural Studies, Botany and Zoology, History, Creative Art, Music and Movement, Cooking, Physical, Development, Social & Emotional Development. Learning through play. 55(B), Po Sein Rd, Bahan, Yangon, Tel: , imm. English for Young Learners : Build confidence in commu nicating in English. Build strong foundation in English for further education. Introducing reading with variety of books. Using Int'l syllabuses such as Oxford, Collins & Cambridge,etc. Lesson will be conducted in English. Taught by qualified & internationally experience teacher. English for Adults Speak fluently in various situations. Improve your pronunciation and increase your vocabulary. Communicate effectively in everyday situations. English for social, study, overseas travel and work purposes. Teacher Yamin - Ph:291679, myanmar for Foreigners. Ph: english Grammar for all classes. Ph: Myanmar Language Guide (For Embassy family & others) When you stay in Myanmar, do you want to ask to your children to learn Myanmar language? Call: (Christine) SAT score raising classic novels and short stories practice can be asked,it is right to enjoy reading classic and persuaded writing,critical thinking and world culture.if you are not the student of SAT study. you tried as much as you can to follow the lesson with skill you got good experienced for your.further study. Spanish language can be inquired. U Thant Zin : , /3B, Thadipahtan St, Tamwe. BZM English language center : I am willing to teach English grammar & speaking. Especially the person who cannot afford the fee. If you are the person who are willing to learn, who really want to spend the time effectively, who are enthusiastic & interested in learning English speaking then do not hesitate & come & learn at BZM language center. Free of charge. Do not miss the great opportunity. The class will be started on 25th November Exception :Only female, 15 years old and above, Mon, Tues & Wed - (3 days a week)1 to 3 pm, Teacher Zin Mar Myint, (Got TKT certificate from Cambridge, Gotcertificate from British council ) Rm 53, Bldg 25, Shwe Ohn Pin villa (new) Yankin. Ph: language Proficiency: Effective & Scientific way. Tutor/ Translator/ Interpreter. (Such languages: Hindi/ Sanskrit/ Bengali/ Nepali/ English & Myanmar), R.S. Verma. B.Sc., (Bot), Yangon. (UFL-English), Yangon. rsverma. Ph: Public Notice HR Module -1, Recruitment & Selection Certificate Course Trainer (1) Daw Soe Soe Kyi, HR Practitioner MPA, B.Sc (Chemistry), Executive Diploma in Human Resources Management Trainer (2) Daw Swe Swe Aung, HR Practitioner B.Agr. Sc Executive Diploma in Human Resources Management Fees Ks- 120,000. Schedule,Start date : - 14th December, Complete date - 29th December, 2013, Sat: & Sun: (3-weeks) Time - From 02:00 pm to 05:00 pm, total 6- hrs. Address : Ba Yint Naung Tower -1, Ground Flr, Rm C&D, Kamaryut Yangon. Contacts : s : com, gmail.com Travel BELTA CAR Rental Rate with Professional English Speaking Tour Car Driver* Ks/ month (exclude fuel OCTANE) contact: Mr.Sonny: & Ms. MyaMyaAung (Tourist Guide): The Any-ways Travel & Tours Co : 1225, Pinlon Rd, 35 Ward, North Dagon ( - gmail.com) was established since early October, The foreign visitors (Tourists, Business or other purpose) are advised to contact us and enjoy our services, such as ticketing,hotel reservation, tour programming, holding seminars,car rental and etc. Welcome anyone contact to Ph : , ASIAN BLISS Myanmar Car Rental Service. Ph: , , Professional English Speaking Tour Car Driver Mr. SONNY Car Rental Service AUNG (Mya Mya Aung) Guide or English translator/ Interpreter ]!!! I can assist you as your best Tour Car Rental Service. Mr. Sonny: NYAN MYINT THU Car Rental Service : Ko Nyan Myint Win Kyi (MD) - 56, Bo Ywe St, Latha, Yangon, Myanmar. Ph : , ph: gmail.com, myintthucarrental. com, gmail. com. Web:www. nyanmyintthucarrental. com Rent/ Sale KAMAYUT, Innya Myaing Rd, 80'x80' land, 2RC, 4 MBR, Fully furnished, New (7) Aircons, Generator, Lawn, Ph Line, US$ 6500 per month. (2) Innya Rd, 80'x90' land, 2RC, 4 Master bedroom, Ph Line, US$ 6000 per month. Ph: PABEDAN, New Condo, Downtown Near Sule Pagoda, 3000 Sqft, 3 MBR, 1 Single bedroom 5 Aircons, Bathtub, Teak floor, nice view, US$ 3500 per month. Ph: THINGANGYUN, On Thu Min Ga La Main Rd, Near- Yangon International School (YIS), ILBC Apartment - First Flr (1,200 Sqft) One Master Bed Room attached bath room & toilet, Two Single Rooms Extra Bath Room & Toilet, Kitchen Room,Dining Room, Sitting Room Near KBZ Bank, City Mart, Market, Schools, Circular Train Station car parking space, Opposite of YIS Teachers' apartments Nice, Peace Location: Ph , Bahan : A European Style fully furnished apartment at Pearl Condominium, 12th flr, 1700 sqft. Most modern interior decoration. Fully Air conditioned. Best for foreigners. Rent expected USD 2500 per month. Can also sell for USD 3,50,000. Call owner (English speaking ) or (Myanmar speaking ) HousingforRent CENTRAL CITY Residence near Park Royal, marble/ hardwood premium fittings, modern design. 4 rooms 3 bathroom (2 master w/ attached bath) 1955sqft $4850/month. com, PRIME OFFICE, Pansodan Rd, 2500 sqft, office layout w/ boardroom and manager's office. Clean open design, foreign quality fittings. Full building generator. $6250/ month. gmail.com, a spacious Two Storey House on University Avenue Road for rent, conveniently located on the center of the road and near to Inya Road. 3 Living Rooms, 4 Bedrooms, 3 Bathrooms, 2 Guest Toilets, 1 Dining Room, an Indoor Kitchen plus an Outdoor Kitchen, a Well Maintained Garden, Freshly painted rooms with teak floors, For further inquires, call Mobiles: (No Brokers Please) Condo (Pyin Nya Waddy) 1 MB, 2 Single Rooms, 1 Single room with bath. Fully furnished, Available to move in 1st week of January' Lift, Satellite, Internet. Ph : , , Pansodan Business Tower Rd, 2500sqft, building generator, office layout w/ boardroom and manager's office. Modern, open design, imported fittings. $6250/month. com, THAMADA CONDO 1600sqft fully furinished condo behind the Thamada Cinema, 5 minutes from Traders and Park Royal Hotel. Suitable for office use as well as residential. Free Parking slot available. 3500$/month, negotiable. Contact hotmail.com, PRIME OFFICE, Panso dan Rd, 2500sqft, office layout w/ boardroom and manager's office. Clean open design, foreign quality fittings. Full building generator. $6250/month. com, CLASSIC STRAND. Brand new 3 bed 2 bath. $3250/month. Designed with marble/hardwood by foreigner. Near strand hotel/union bar. com, Premium condo near Park Royal, Yaw Min Gyi, marble and hardwood floors, modern design, 1955 sqft, 4 bed, 2 master 3 bath, $ 4850/month. gmail.com Tel: NEw Classic Strand 2800 sqft SOHO w/ mezzanine, 3rd floor corner unit riverview. 14 foot ceilings.gym,sauna, internet lounge. $7650/ month. Strand Rd, near Hilton/Center Point, 5min to Union Bar/Strand Hotel. com, golden Valley - A luxury modern 3 storey fully furnished house in good quiet locality with a manicured manageable garden including pool for relaxing. 4 master bed rooms including 3 with walk in wardrobes, 6 A/C and 1 telephone line. No brokers, if interested contact Pearl Condominium for rent, Kabaaye Pagoda Rd, Building (C), good view, 1250 Sqft, 1MB, 1BR, 2AC, 2Heater, Fully furnish, 1800 USD. Room will be vacant on 20 Nov, Contact: , MAYANGONE, (1).9 Mile, Mindama condo, 3000 Sqft, 2 MbR, 1 SR, fully furnish, 4500 USD, (2).8 Mile, Kabaraye villa, 2500 Sqft, 1 MBR, 2 SR, fully furnish, 3500 USD. (3)7 Mile, Shwe Hinthar condo, 3500 Sqft, 3 MBR, fully furnish, 4500 USD. (4) Near Sedona hotel, 800 Sqft, 1 MBR, 2 SR, (apartment ), fully furnish, 800 USD. Ph : HousingforSale We have Lands for sale suitable for making Industrial buildings in large area. Buyers can Contact Us on (There is no pay for Agents & Third party... Warmly welcome the buyers ) Southern Dagon - 18, Land and Good Wood Building for Sales 20 x 60-Aung Min Ga La street(18b)-250 Lakhs, 40 x 60, Aung Mingalar St (18b)-500 Lakhs, Ready for Staying, Water, Electricity. Selling by the Owner himself: Ph: , Apartment : Muditor condo (1)Taw Win Construciton. Place: On U Ba Han Rd, Mayangone. Ground Flr Price : 520 lakhs. (nego: + agent fees). Contact Person:Christine Pyin Oo Lwin, Near Kandaw Gyi Park, Land only 0.6 acres. Ph: ,
57 THE MYANMAR TIMES december 2-8, 2013 Employment FREE UN Positions UNICEF Myanmar is seeking Fixed-term Appointment Chief, Field Office (NO-C), based in Mandalay : Advanced University degree in Social Sciences, International Relations, Government, Public Administration, Public Policy, Social Policy, Social Development, Community Develop ment or other relevant disciplines with specialized training in conflict resoluttion. 5 years of relevant professional work experience, Fluency in English & Myanmar. Working knowledge of another UN language is an asset. Creating & Innovating. Pls send application with updated CV or Personal History form, educational credentials and references to jobs. by 11 December UNICEF Myanmar is seeking Fixed-term Appointment (1)Child Protection Officer (NO-B), based in Sittwe Position No : University degree in Social Sciences, Law or Child Development, 2 years of relevant professional experience, Fluency in English & Myanmar. Working knowledge of another UN language is an asset. (2) WASH Cluster Support Officer (NO-B), based in Sittwe, Rakhine State (Re-advertisement) Temporary appointment for 364 days : University degree in Civil Engineering, Hydrogeology, Public Health Engineering or other relevant technical area, 2 years' experience in provision of water supply & sanitation services in emergency operations, Expertise in rapid assessments & public health risk analysis; strong links in humanitarian community, Excellent in English & essential computer software packages, Willingness to travel, Knowledge of Myanmar and/ or Rakhine and/or other languages will also be an asset. Pls send application with updated CV or Personal History form, educational credentials and references to jobs. by 6 December iom Int'l Organization for Migration is seeking (1)Township Health Supervisor 1 post - Bogalay, Ayeyarwaddy Region. (2) Community Health Assistant 5 posts - Bogalay, Ayeyarwaddy Region (3)Community Health Assistant 7 posts - Mawlamyinegyun, Ayeyarwaddy Region. (4) Maternal, Newborn & Child Health Promoter 5 posts - Bogalay, Ayeyarwaddy Region. (5)Maternal, Newborn & Child Health Promoter 7 posts - Mawlamyinegyun, Ayeyarwaddy Region. (6) Maternal, Newborn & Child Health Supervisor 1 post - Bogalay, Ayeyarwaddy Region. (7)Maternal, Newborn & Child Health Supervisor 1 post - Mawlamyinegyun, Ayeyarwaddy Region. Pls submit an application letter and an updated CV with a maximum length of 3 pages including names & contact details of 3 referees (copies of certificates and further documents are not required at this stage) to Int'l Organization for Migration (IOM), Mission in Myanmar - Yangon Office, 318-A, Ahlone Rd, Dagon Tsp, Yangon, Closing date : 2 December, Ingo Positions myanmar Red Cross Society is seeking(1) Admin/ Data Assistant 1 post in Taunggyi: Any graduate or university degree holder with computer skills. Bachelor in computer science is more preferable. Able to use MS office. Skillful computer typing in English & Myanmar. (2) Monitoring & Evaluation Officer 1 post in Taunggyi: M.B.,B.S with valid SAMA or equivalent medical degree from Medical university recognized by Government of Myanmar. Master/ Diploma degree in Public Health will be the priority. Effective both Myanmar & English. (3) Maternal New-born and Child Health Specialist 1 post in Mindat, Chin State: 3 years experience in MNCH. (4) Monitoring & Evaluation Officer (CBHD) 1 post in Nay Pyi Taw & frequently travel to project areas: University degree or advanced education, certificate in health/ social science, management or other relevant subject. 2 years experience in health related field. Effective both Myanmar & English Language. For all posts : Effective computer knowledge. Red Cross Volunteers are preferable. Pls send application letter, CV & related documents to Myanmar Red Cross Society Head Office, Yazathingaha Rd, Dekkhinathiri, Nay Pyi Taw. Or gmail.com, Closing date For 1 & 2 : For 3 & 4 : medecins du Monde (MDM) is seeking Project Manager 1 post in Myitkyina, Kachin State: Any Graduate (Public Health, Medical Science, Social Work, Public Administration, Program Management). 3 years experience in NGO's, possibly in Health programs, out of which 2 years in senior management position. Fluent in English. Excellent computer literacy. Pls submit CV and a cover letter to MDM Country Coordination Office, Yangon, No.47-B, Po Sein St, Bahan, Yangon , , office. com yangon Oil and Gas Services Co., Ltd is seeking HSE Supervisor 2 posts in Sagaing Division : Degree in relevant Engineering discipline such as HSE, Petroleum or Mechanical. 5 years' experience in the development & implementation of HSE programs. Computer skills with working knoweldge of Microsoft Software. Pls send full CV, detailing skills, knowledge & experience with recent color passport sized photograph to com by or submit hard copy to room 1406, 14 th Flr, Sakura Tower not later than 15 th December 2013 (or) until suitable candidate is defined. world Vision Int'l - Myanmar is seeking(1) Zonal Agriculture Specialist (Hilly Zone): Bachelor Degree in Agricultural Science is essential & Master Degree desirable. 3 years experience in the field of Agriculture. (2)Livestock Specialist (Economic & Agriculture Development Depart ment): Bachelor Degree in veterinary science is essential & Master Degree desirable. 3 years experience in the field of Livestock. For all posts : Good knowledge in Microsoft Office. Must provide a clean criminal background. Pls submit resume (clearly identify the post you apply) by post to HR Department, World Vision Int'l - Myanmar or in person to application drop-box at No (18), Shin Saw Pu Rd; Ahlone, Sanchaung PO or send to Closing date :December 6, medecins Sans Frontieres - Switzerland (MSF-CH) is seeking (1)Human Resources & Administrative Assistant in Yangon Office. Education: Certificate or diploma in business, hotel or HR Management or similar education. Experience in a similar position of at least 2 years in a private company or in NGO. Fluent in English & Myanmar. (2)Medical Doctor - 1 post in Sittwe, Myauk Oo, KyaukTaw - Rakhine State: Recognized medical doctor diploma/ degree with valid SAMA. Previous working experience with humanitarian organization & interested in public health in remote population are assest. 1 year clinical experience essential. Fluent in English & Myanmar. Pls submit your application (motivation letter, updated CV and copy of professional diplomas) to HR Manager, Medecins Sans Frontieres - Switzerland (MSF-CH) 101, Dhamazedi Rd, Kamaryut, Yangon, myanmar Red Cross Society is seeking (1) Field Coordinator (CBHD focus on MNCH) 1 post in Mindat, Chin State: University graduate (in public health or management or related fields). 3 years experience in programme manage ment with experience in planning, monitoring & reporting & in budget control. 3 year's experience in supervision, manage ment of staff & volunteers within the NS or any other related NGO. (2)Manager 1 post in Hpa-An, Kayin State: University degree in related field. 5 years experience in senior management. For all posts : Effective computer knowledge. Red cross volunteers are preferable. Pls send application letter, CV & related documents to Myanmar Red Cross Society Head Office, Yazathingaha Rd, Dekkhinathiri, Nay Pyi Taw. Or gmail.com solidarites Int'l is seeking Deputy Logistics Coordinator 1 post in Yangon: 4 years of professional experience in Logistics field with INGO/ NGO. University degree or Diploma (preferably in Logistics Or related proven experience in similar area.). Knowledge of IT management & MS office. Demonstrated team management & planning abilities. Fluent in English & Myanmar. Pls submit application (CV, cover letter, references) to : Application for Deputy Logistics Coordinator/ Yangon, - Solidarites Int'l office : 44-A, Tharyarwaddy Lane, Bahan, Yangon or per solidarites-myanmar. org, Closing date: 30 November, myanmar Red Cross Society is seeking (1) PMER Coordinator 1 post in Nay Pyi Taw: Bachelor's degree. Effective English language skill & computer knowledge. (2) SHG Development Officer 1 post in Nay Pyi Taw: Any graduate. Effective computer knowledge. Knowledge of English in speaking and writing is an advantage. Red Cross Volunteers are preferable. Pls send application letter, CV & related documents to Myanmar Red Cross Society Head Office. Yazathingaha Rd, Dekkhinathiri, Nay Pyi Taw. Or gmail.com business Develop ment Manager (Salary in USD) M/F 5 posts - Age 27 ~ 35. Graduate with MBA. 3 years experience in any related field Hotel & Restaurant (or) Trading (or) Construction (or) Fishery. Must have strategic thinking for future business development and strong organizational and planning skill. Must be an independent leader with minimal supervision and good in communication skill and negotiation skill. Good written and verbal communication skill in English. Contact: No.(004/A), Bldg (A), Yuzana St, Highway Complex, Kamaryut, Yangon. Ph: Local Positions East Meets West is seeking a Program Assistant based in Yangon. Fluency in Myanmar & English. Proficiency in Italian preferred. Good knowledge of MS Word, excel and . Experience in the healthcare sector is advantageous. Pls submit CV & cover letter to EMW Yangon Office: Rm. 01, Bldg. 27, Shwe Ohn Pin Housing, Yankin Tsp / eastmeetswest.org / com As a world-class hotel designed for today s savvy business and leisure traveler, we are seeking resourceful individuals who are in touch with today s evolving environment. (1)Property Engineer / Assistant Chief Engineer : Responsible for maintenance and repair of all building, fixtures and fitting. Good planner and can execute preventive maintenance. complement utility consumption controls that make a difference, Zero tolerance on Life Safety & Security issues.can maintains all Life Safety Equipment. Operate an electronic Fire Alarm system (3)Security Manager / Assistant Security Managers : Strong Organizer. Has Fire & Life Safety experience in a previous role. High level of energy and mobility. Ability to train and a desire to improve operations all the time. Likes challenges and motivated by making a difference to an organization. Not afraid to made decisions and can get things done. (4) Night Manager : Able to handle a hotel's operations, guest and staff during the overnight shift. Represent responsibly Management during the night. Can operate Opera, and Micros. Able to handle emergency situation when necessary. Excellent communication skills in English (5)Duty Manager : Able to handle a busy hotel s guests and staff, Represent responsibly Management, Can operate Opera, and Micros, Able to handle emergency situation when necessary, Excellent communication skills in English. If you believe you can deliver efficient and genuine service as well as to be a part of the Shangri- La family at Shangri-La Residences Yangon and Trader Hotels, Yangon, please forward your latest Resume with color photograph, NRC copy, educational and working experience certificates to: Human Resources Department, Traders Hotel Yangon. Ph: tradershotels.com. Closing date : 7 Dec KELVIN CHIA Yangon Ltd is a foreign legal consultancy firm. We invite motivated & committed individuals to join us as,(1) Lawers who will work on a variety of corporate & commercial matters & transactions in Myanmar. If you are a Myanmar - qualified lawyer with strong English language skills, you are invited to apply to join our Myanmar prctice group. Myanmar nationals admitted to int'l bars are also welcome to apply. Training will be provided. Applicants may to and submit your curriculum vitae. Horizon Int'l School is looking for (Shukhinnthar Campus) (1).Office secretary - F 1 post : Age under 30, Bachelor s Degree in any field or Diploma in the relevant field, Sufficient work experience in the related field, Good command of English, Computer literate, Customer care skills, (2). Assistant Teacher - F 2 posts : Age 20 to 35, University graduate, Proficient in English, Comfortable working with young learners, Able to devote oneself to teaching, Friendly, enthusiastic & patient. (3). Receptionist - F 1 post : Age under 30, Bachelor s Degree in any field or Diploma in the relevant field, Sufficient work experience in the related field, Good command of English, Able to handle phone communication, BENEFITS: Attractive Salary, Lunch is also provided, An opportunity to work for an institution where students have lots of outstanding int'l achievements, Enhancement training. Pls bring CV along with a copy of your credentials to: 235,ShukintharMyoPatt Rd, Taketa, Yangon.Ph: , , Closing date : December 15th, BAGAN CAPITAL, an investment and advisory firm, is seeking an Office Manager (Yangon head office). Duties: Supervise office staff, manage accounts, maintain office records and supplies, perform general clerical tasks, deal with inquiries, organize office operations, systems and procedures. MUST BE: Fluent in English and Myanmar (native), able to type in Myanmar, able to travel locally within Yangon state, have excellent interpersonal skills, be experienced with software such as Excel & Word, have basic accounting & math skills, able to multitask, be detailoriented, have excellent time management skill. Must provide own accommodation. Must have no criminal record. CV to: bcfmyanmar.com Orion Business Group is seeking Education Consultant - 4 Posts : 1 to 2 years experience in educational consulting field, Welcome to apply fresh graduate MBA or DMA, Excellent in English, Support Marketing director to run effective marketing strategy for education service, Can consult & communicate well with any level of customers (2)Marketing Executive - 6 Posts : Diploma or certificate in marketing, Excellent in English, Experience in marketing field prefer, Fresh graduate who has a great enthusiasm in marketing can also welcome to apply, Good communication & negotiation skills, Flexible and can work as a team. Pls submit application with CV, recent passport photo & copy of all relevant documents to 512/B, Waizayantar Rd, 4 Ward, South Okkalapa. Ph: , orionbusinessgroup.com within two weeks. (1). English - Japanese Translator -(JLPT Level 1 and English language skill) Salary 10 Lakh & above (2). Japanese - Burmese Translator (JLPT Level 1 ), Salary 5.5 Lakh (3) Company Introduction. Consulting company. Off day is generally Sat, Sun and public holidays. Fill application form at, goo.gl/zs2epe or Send Resume to DJ Myanmar Ltd : 4th flr, Left Room, Bldg 13/B, Shankone St, Myaynigone, Yangon, job myanmar.com by post. JETRO s SECRETARY lady Secretary, a graduate at least, age 20~25 years., having the following qualities are welcome to apply: Have good health, Pleasant personality, Fluent in English, Computer skills, Japanese language skill (an advantage), Experience and interest in office logistical & secretarial works, High spirit in teamwork to support the office, Confidence & adaptability in challenging works, Necessary overtime works. Pls submit CV, recommendations, copies of relevant certificates & N.R.C, & a recent photo to [Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO Ygn), Sedona Hotel Business Suites#04-02, No. 1, Kaba Aye Pagoda Rd., Yankin, Yangon, Tel: ~3] Closing date : December 2nd 2013, URGENT NEED : Accountants, General Clerks, Marketing & Sales Persons - M/F- US$ 1,000 /Month, Free Accomodation, Food, Transport Yearly Bonus, Local Allowances, Festival Allowances. To work in Nigeria, Lagos. 25 Myanmar are working there No agent fees, Air Ticket Free, During Vacation with pay CPA or ACCA or M.Ba or B.Com or D.Ma or LCCI, Good for English speaking, Computer skill & MYOB Ph: , Audier & Partners, a Vietnam-based international law firm with offices in Vietnam, Mongolia and Myanmar is looking to hire business lawyers for its Yangon Office. Profile: Myanmar nationals holding advanced law degrees, minimum 1-year work experience in law firms/ government entities, full English proficiency (reading, writing, speaking), computer software proficiency. Pls submit CV to audierpartners.com INTER GROUP of companies : an int'l management consulting company is looking for (1).Junior Consultant 1 Post : Diploma or Degree in Business Management and/ or Finance, Good communication, presentation & inter personal skills, Comfor table with engaging clients, Ability to work both independently and as part of a team, Prior knowledge on trade matters, logistics and shipping documents required. Pls submit detailed CV in person or by , stating your current & expected salary, date of availability, reason for leaving and a recent passport photo to 7(D), 1st Flr, Pyay Rd, 6 miles, Hlaing, Yangon, Ph: , , icononline.net Pls state the Job Title that you are applied for in the subject of your . Savoy Hotel, Yangon is urgently looking for (1) Sous Chef - minimum 3 ~ 5 years experience in the same position (2) Driver - minimum 3 years experience (3) Bell Man - minimum 2 years experience and good English skill (4) Storekeeper - minimum 2-3 years experience (5) Security - minimum 2 years experience. Application letter by to or 129, Dhammazedi Rd, Yangon. Tel: (95-1) , Please mention the desire position on the application letter. Aryu Thukha Specialist Hospital, Lashio is seeking suitable person for the following positions. (1). Nurses 3 posts (2). Laboratory technician 2 posts (3). Radiographer 2 posts. Requirements :Dip. In Nursing, B.Med. Tech. (Lab technology),. B.Med.Tech. (Medical imaging). Interested candidates can enquire at myanmar Survey Research (MSR) is looking for (1) International Consul tant in Yangon: at least 3 year working in a research space - ideally social & public policy research; superb data analytical and report writing skills; excellent communication skills & ability to build rapport with people for a range of backgrounds. (2) Chief Accountant - M/F 1 post: CPA or ACCA or other relevant qualification, 5 years experience in accounting & auditing, good English communication skills, computer literate. (3) Research Executive - M/F 2 posts : design and manage a research project; analyse & interpret data. Have good English writing skills. Pls submit CV with recent photo and relevant documents to #55, Maha Bandoola Garden St, Yangon. myanmar.com.mm within three weeks. World Trade Associate Trading Company Ltd is seeking Sales and Marketing - M 4 Posts : Degree or Diploma holder in related field. Good personality, polite, neat and tidy. Pls contact : 40/42, 136 St, Tarmwe, Yangon. Ph: , , AF-MERCADOS EMI- Recruitment. AF- Mercados Energy Markets Int'l S.A., a premier energy sector consultancy firm based in Madrid, Spain is seeking qualified Myanmarnationals in energy related engineering & economic fields for ongoing & future projects in Myanmar. Over 5 years relevant experience in at least one of these fields related to the energy sector (power, natural gas/oil, renewables/ efficiency): legal, regulatory & institutional study, planning, statistic and economic analysis, engineering (generation, transmission, distribut ion). Advanced degree in law, economics, public administration, financial and/or business management, engineering, or other related fields. Excellent proficiency in English Myanmar. Pls send CV & cover letter by to by , & include contact phone numbers. AF Mercados EMI is a dynamic, multinational organization. www. mercadosemi.com
58 58 Sport THE MYANMAR TIMES December 2-8, 2013 LONDON Two charged in football fixing probe LEVERKUSEN TWO men with Singaporean nationality suspected of fixing matches in lower-league English football appeared before magistrates on November 29, a day after they were charged with conspiracy to defraud, prosecutors said. The men, alleged to be members of a Singapore-based illegal betting syndicate, were among six people arrested last week in an investigation by the recently formed National Crime Agency (NCA). Chann Sankaran, a 33-year-old Singapore national, and Krishna Sanjey Ganeshan, a 43-year-old with dual British and Singapore nationality, appeared in court in Cannock, central England. A seventh man has been arrested, and he and the four other men were bailed on November 28, the NCA said in a statement. Sankaran and Ganeshan have been accused of conspiring to defraud bookmakers by influencing the course of football matches and placing bets on them between November 1 and November 26 this year. The threat of corruption is something that the Football League and the other football authorities treat with the utmost seriousness. Shaun Harvey Football League chief executive The maximum sentence for this offence is 10 years imprisonment. The NCA added their investigation was ongoing. Earlier, the Daily Telegraph newspaper said an undercover investigation by its reporters had triggered the probe by the NCA, Britain s answer to the FBI. No teams in England s lucrative Premier League are believed to be involved in the probe. A spokesperson for the Football Association, the sport s governing body in England, said, We have worked closely with the authorities in relation to these allegations. The FA will make no further comment at this time due to ongoing investigations. The Football League, which runs the three professional divisions below the Premier League, said they had not been contacted by the police. The threat of corruption is something that the Football League and the other football authorities treat with the utmost seriousness, said chief executive Shaun Harvey. The integrity of our matches and our competitions is the bedrock of the domestic game. A notorious Singaporean football match-fixer meanwhile denied any links to the alleged plot in England after a suspect named him as his boss, a report said on November 29. Wilson Raj Perumal, a convicted fixer who is under police protection in Hungary, told Singapore s New Paper that he played no part in the scam although he admitted he had full knowledge of it. In the videotaped Daily Telegraph sting a Singaporean suspect says he is working for Perumal, but Perumal, a self-confessed arch-fixer who says he used to collaborate with alleged Singaporean mastermind Dan Tan, insisted he was not involved. [The suspect] was acting on his own. He was set up, he told the New Paper via . I told him to be very careful [that] this may be a set-up, Perumal wrote, adding that the suspect was keeping me posted on what he was doing even though I never asked for it. Perumal was jailed for match-fixing in Finland in 2011 and is the reputed whistleblower who has helped European police uncover hundreds of rigged games. His fixing career, which started in Singapore in the 1990s, extended to arranging international friendlies once with a bogus team and rigging the results. In the Daily Telegraph video, the Singaporean suspect calls Perumal the king of match-fixing. You go to the net [and] you search Wilson Raj Perumal, kelong [matchfixing] king, the alleged fixer says. He s my boss. Everybody in the world knows him. Reports earlier this year also linked Perumal with a multimilliondollar scandal in Australian state football. In September, Singaporean authorities arrested four alleged members of a global match-fixing syndicate under a special law allowing indefinite detention without charge. A source told AFP that businessman Dan Tan, whose full name is Tan Seet Eng, was one of those held in the crackdown. In February, Europe-wide police agency Europol said it had found evidence of match-fixing in top international football matches and it had uncovered an organised crime syndicate based in Asia that was behind the operation. The biggest case of fixing in sport in Britain in recent years involved three Pakistan cricketers and a British agent who were jailed in 2011 for spot-fixing during a test match against hosts England. The men were involved in prearranging no-balls for shadowy South Asian betting rings. AFP The 30,000-seat Wunna Theikdi Stadium in Nay Pyi Taw stands ready to host events for the 2013 SEA games. Myanmar 100-percent ready for SEA Games Hla Hla Htay MYANMAR is 100 percent ready for the Southeast Asian Games, a senior official said on November 29, as the clock ticked down to the biggest sports event in the nation s history. In a major test of Myanmar s infrastructure and organisation, thousands of athletes, officials, media and visitors are descending for the 22-day multisport event starting this week. We are 100-percent ready to hold the SEA Games, sports ministry director U Htay Aung said. We are ready now. We held the final Although we tried our best for security with enough numbers, I m a little bit nervous. Senior police official rehearsal of the opening ceremony [on November 28]. U Htay Aung said 6000 athletes and 3000 journalists are due for the games, which began in low-key fashion with football preliminaries and floorball demonstration events on December 1. It does not formally get underway until the opening ceremony on December 11 at the 30,000-seat Wunna Theikdi Stadium in Nay Pyi Taw. Nine thousand athletes and journalists alone are expected and hundreds of thousands of local fans will attend, U Htay Aung said. Vice President U Nyan Tun has urged athletes to strive for a golden age of Myanmar sports improving the reputation of the country and making history to be regarded as sporting heroes, according to a government release. However, privately some officials are concerned about the preparations and potential problems, especially the number of hotel rooms to accommodate all the visitors. There are many things to be done even though many ministries are involved. Hotel rooms cannot be enough because many foreigners and many visitors will come, a government official, who did not Photo: Sithu Lwin want to be named, told AFP. Ten of thousands of people will join the events. Hopefully everything can be done smoothly. Cooperation between ministries is very weak, he confided. A senior police official admitted, Thousands of athletes and officials and also thousands of fans will come. Although we tried our best for security with enough numbers, I m a little bit nervous. The SEA Games are not unfamiliar with problems. The last edition in Indonesia was hit by corruption, delays in construction and a deadly stadium stampede at the men s football final. Some 1380 medals will be handed out in events ranging from mainstream sports such as athletics to the traditional Myanmar pursuit of chinlone. AFP 6000 Athletes participating in the 2013 Southeast Asia Games NEW YORK Kidd fined $50,000 for drink spill to delay basketball game BROOKLYN Nets coach Jason Kidd was fined US$50,000 by the NBA on November 28 for deliberately spilling a cup of soda on the court as a delaying tactic to halt a game. The move came in the last seconds of a home loss on November 27 to the Los Angeles Lakers. Kidd denied that the spill was intentional, but television replays show Kidd saying, Hit me to Tyshawn Taylor as the Nets guard was walking toward him with 8.3 seconds remaining and Brooklyn out of timeouts. Taylor bumped his coach and Kidd spilled the drink on the floor. Intentional or not, the delay worked to Brooklyn s benefit by giving Kidd time to draw up a final play in hopes of scoring. But the play did not work and the Nets lost. Kidd was holding a cup of soda at the side of the court while Lakers guard Jodie Meeks was at the free throw line. After Meeks made their first shot to give the Lakers a edge, Taylor walked toward Kidd and collided with his coach, who spilled the drink onto the court. Cup slipped out of my hand while I was getting Ty, Kidd said. Sweaty palms. I was never good with the ball, deadpanned Kidd, the NBA s number two all-time steals and assist leader before retiring this year and taking the Nets coaching job. In the heat of the battle, you re trying to get guys in and out of the game, and the cup fell out of my hand. While arena workers cleaned the slick mess to make the surface safe for play, the Nets staff sorted out their next strategy, although not without two Laker players trying to sneak into the huddle to hear the plan. Meeks made his second free throw after the delay, then Brooklyn s Paul Pierce missed a potential equalising 3-pointer with 2.2 seconds remaining on the way to defeat. Despite the video replays showing Kidd clearly mouthing his instructions, Taylor also denied the deliberate nature of the delay tactic. I wasn t paying attention. I just kind of bumped him, said Taylor. I didn t even know he was holding [anything]. Coach was drinking a soda on the sideline. I was like, What s he doing? It could ice a free throw shooter and be a timeout when you don t have one, but that wasn t the thought process. I was just coming out, and he was in my way. As a player with the Dallas Mavericks, Kidd famously bumped into Atlanta coach Mike Woodson while dribbling up the sideline, appearing to initiate the contact and then blaming Woodson for blocking his way up the court. AFP
59 Sport 59 LEVERKUSEN Best is yet to come, vows United s Moyes Ryland James MANCHESTER United s David Moyes has said the best is yet to come after they routed Bayer Leverkusen 5-0 in the Champions League their biggest European away win for 56 years. United qualified for the knock-out stages and stay top of Group A with their biggest away victory in Europe since beating the Shamrock Rovers 6-0 in September The best days are still to come and there will be even better days, said United manager Moyes on November 27 in Leverkusen. The main thing is that we have qualified and stayed top of the group. It s great to score five goals away from home, but I want it to be something we do regularly, not just every now and then, he said. To come to Germany and win 5-0 is superb. Leverkusen have a good home record which puts it in perspective. A volley from right-back Antonio Valencia and an own-goal from Leverkusen centre-back Emir Spahic gave United a commanding early lead before defender Jonny Evans added a third with an hour gone. England defender Chris Smalling added their fourth on 77 minutes after he met Wayne Rooney s chip at the back post. Nani then latched on to Giggs s superb long ball for a fine solo goal for the fifth on 88 minutes with the Leverkusen defence in tatters. Leverkusen deservedly suffered their first home defeat in 14 games since losing 2-1 to Bayern Munich in the Bundesliga back in March. Bayer need to win at Real Sociedad next week and hope United beat Shakhtar Donestk at Old Trafford to reach the knock-out phase. England striker Rooney, who played a hand in the first four goals, and evergreen Welshman Ryan Giggs, who turned 40 on November 29, were singled out for praise by Moyes after outstanding displays. Moyes said on the eve of his fifth decade, Giggs shows no sign of slowing down. People have mentioned his age, but you can t question his footballing ability. He s an unbelievable player, said Moyes. He s getting better, just his vision alone for the final goal for Nani. You couldn t say he needed to come off and I am lucky to work with him. He just keeps getting better. You just keep playing him and Ryan will tell us when he s had enough. He works really hard in training and produces these great performances. With Dutch striker Robin van Persie to return from a groin injury, Moyes said he is eager to keep Rooney fresh. Wayne doesn t need a rest. He s in form and fit. But I ll be watching for if he does. If the opportunity comes I will make sure I keep him as fresh as I can, said Moyes. He s one of those players better off playing regularly, but I don t want to find him having to sit out for five or six games in the middle of the season. Having succeeded Sir Alex Ferguson as United manager at the start of the season, Moyes basked in the glory of his best night in office. The goals will take the headlines, but I thought we defended well tonight. It s not just about the goals for me, but the team performance, said the Scotsman, whose side host Shakhtar Donestk next week. The next part is to win the group in the next game, but we want to do well in all competitions. Bayer Leverkusen boss Sami Hyypia admitted his side had been outclassed and showed United too much respect. It s not very pleasant to sit here after a game like that. We lost belief after they went 2-0 up, he said. AFP Manchester United s Ecuadorian midfielder Antonio Valencia controls the ball during the UEFA Champions League football match against Bayern Leverkusen in Leverkusen, Germany, on November 27. Photo: AFP
60 60 THE MYANMAR TIMES December 2-8, 2013 SPORT EDITOR: Tim McLaughlin Sport Myanmar declares itself ready for the SEA Games SPORT 58 RIO DE JANEIRO Rio finalises master plan for 2016 Olympic venues RIO Games Organisers said on November 28 they and international Olympic federations have signed off a venue master plan. In a statement, organisers said a two-day eighth IOC Project Review had concluded with significant progress on readying the 2016 tournament, the first to be held in South America. We have enjoyed two very busy and productive days of meetings [and] benefited from the International Olympic Committee s expert guidance and support, Rio 2016 President Carlos Nuzman said. Working hand-in-hand with our colleagues from the three levels [municipal, state and federal] of government, we have made important advances in our project. We are proud to have finalised the Venue Master Plan in record time, 1000 days ahead of the Games. Hosting an Olympic and Paralympic Games is a hugely demanding project, with many challenges, but we are firmly on track and working every day with great focus, energy and commitment to deliver unforgettable Games in International Olympic Committee sports director Christophe Dubi said, Completion of the detailed venue master plan two-and-a-half years out is an excellent result. It compares favourably with previous editions of the games, which saw adjustments later in the preparations. The meeting, also attended by Rio 2016 Coordination Commission Chair Nawal El Moutawakel and Brazilian Minister for Sport Aldo Rebelo, assessed key areas including accommodation, transport, sustainability, legacy, engagement and communications. AFP SYDNEY Coach Lehmann wants more Aussie aggression in Ashes COACH Darren Lehmann said on November 29 there will be no let-up as Australia continues its aggressive in-yourface cricket against England in the current Ashes Test series. Amid the rancour over a spiteful opening test in Brisbane that Australia won by 381 runs last month, Lehmann said he wants to take Australian cricket back to the golden eras of Dennis Lillee and Jeff Thomson, the Chappells and Steve Waugh. Lehmann said the playing days of strong-willed Australian characters Merv Hughes, Rod Marsh and Allan Border were defined by a good, hard brand of cricket. We want to play within the rules, but we will play aggressive, in-yourface cricket which was a trademark of those eras, Lehmann said, writing in News Limited newspapers. When Australian teams are performing at their best they are playing right on the edge as we were in Brisbane. That is the Aussie way. Australia captain Michael Clarke was fined 20 percent of his match fee by the International Cricket Council after warning England s James Anderson to expect a broken arm. The final day of the first test boiled I like the sight of characters expressing themselves in the game. That s the sort of cricket the fans want to see. Darren Lehmann Australian cricket coach English batsman James Anderson (right) and Australian fielder George Bailey exchange rancorous words during day four of the first Ashes cricket test match between England and Australia at the Gabba Cricket Ground in Brisbane. Photo: AFP over with constant sledging (insults) and plenty of finger-pointing. Lehmann gave no indication that his Australia team would be backing off from their fiercely fought cricket at the Gabba, where firebrand paceman Mitchell Johnson was man-ofthe-match with match figures of nine wickets for 103. I loved the whole theatre around Mitchell Johnson s display at the Gabba right down to the fact that his new moustache brought back all those rich memories of the 1970s with the stars and their handlebar mo s [moustaches], Lehmann wrote. I like the sight of characters expressing themselves in the game. That s the sort of cricket the fans want to see. We have asked Mitchell to fill a role and he did that brilliantly with aggression and confidence. We want him to liven [England] up. When he is on song as he was in Brisbane he produces the type of performances that are a rare and precious sight in the modern game. My wish is that the lessons of Johnson s spell and the entire bowling effort echo down through the generations. Lehmann said Johnson s blistering spell at the Gabba reminded him of Australian cricket in the Lillee- Thomson era of the 1970s. Lehmann said it had been a dramatic week for cricket and he wanted to send his best wishes to Jonathan Trott following his decision to return home with a stress-related illness. He is a fine player and I m sure we will see him again at international level, he said. Lehmann said he urged the Australian fans in this week s second Adelaide Test to replicate the crowd force of Brisbane. The noise in Brisbane when Johnson and Nathan Lyon were spearing through England s first innings was something to behold, he said. It is a long time since we have felt the sort of vibe that the whole country was behind us. Thank you, Australia. Please keep it up. AFP
62 2 Construction materials Prices in Yangon, November 2013 Compiled by Myat Noe and Mya Kay Khine What s the deal with brokers? Agents are an important link in the real estate chain, bringing together buyers and sellers and making sure deals are on the level Handmade brick (from Taikkyi) K per unit Machine-made brick K110 per unit Handmade brick K per unit Sand (smooth) K7000 per 100 cubic feet Sand (rough) K8000 per 100 cubic feet Pebble (simple) K58,000 per 100 cubic feet Property special Report Photo:. Editor Myo Lwin Sub-editors Wade Guyitt, Mya Kay Khine Soe Writers Aung Kyaw Nyunt, Myo Lwin, Mya Kay Khine, Wa Lone, Nyan Lynn Aung, Nandar Aung, Zon Pann Pwint, Aye Thidar Kyaw, Ei Ei Thu Pebble (bright white) K60,000 per 100 cubic feet Cement (Elephant) K58,000 per 50kg bag Galvanised roof (Elephant thick) K270 per foot Galvanised roof (Five Star) K per one foot This size ranges from 6 to 12 feet Galvanised roof (four angle colour) K500 per foot K520 per foot K570 per foot Photographers Kaung Htet, Aung Htay Hlaing, Ko Taik Cover and design Tin Zaw Htway, Ko Pxyo, Khin Zaw, Ko Ko Zaw For enquiries mm AUNG KYAW NYUNT WITH Yangon s real estate market booming, it s not just the sellers who are turning a profit. Real estate agents those in the middle, helping both sides close the deal are also benefiting, although one negative side effect of the property gold rush, accredited agents say, is now everyone wants a piece of the action. That s a bad thing for customers needing an experienced, steady hand, says U Aung Kyaw Moe, marketing manager at Estate Myanmar real estate agency. It seems a career as a broker is easy to do and everyone can do it. In my opinion, estate agents or brokers should work steadfastly in their careers for the long term, U Aung Kyaw Moe said. An estate agent s career is not easy as other people think. With foreign investment companies entering Myanmar this year, real estate agencies are now seeing more business from foreigners than ever before. But whether new to the culture or a lifelong resident, U Aung Kyaw Moe advised buyers and sellers to always go with established, experienced agents to help them navigate what is, for most, a stressful and challenging process. With ownership papers being one of the biggest challenges of any property deal, he said, it s especially important to have a professional look into the background of the property, to make sure the person you re dealing with has the legal right to offer up the property. I have met some people who have had disputes over this matter, he said. So I want to advise that people should ask about the properties first, before they buy them, and should buy only if there is no problem with the possession of documents for the properties. Property listings are available from real estate journals such as A Kyoe Saung (Agent) and Golden Triangle, but direct contact with real estate agencies and property owners is the best way to proceed, said U Aung Kyaw Moe. Buyers should enquire about property prices from real estate agencies then discuss the property with the agency, he said, adding that it s important to get legal advice as well. U Yan Aung, general manager of U Sai Khon Naung real estate agency, agreed that it s always best to avoid fly-by-night part-time operators. Licensed agencies which pay tax to the government are trustworthy, he said. They can provide detailed information about the properties and their fees are very reasonable. Commission fees, which are set by the Myanmar Real Estate Services Association, depend on the price of the property. When the purchase price is up to K10,000,000 (100 lakhs, or about US$10,200), the commission fee is 3 percent; over K10,000,000 and the commission fee is 2pc, with the seller required to pay the commission fee. With rentals, U Yan Aung added, both tenant and landlord pay one month s rental charge for a yearlong rental, or half a month s rental charge for a six-month rental. Like buyers, renters must also make sure the person putting the property up for rent is actually allowed to do so. If you want to rent a house, you should check whether the host has right to rent the home or not. If not, you ll face legal problems. More foreigners entering the country means more property deals, though most seem to be looking for rentals rather than purchases. Renting increased about 50pc in the second half of 2012, he said, while buying and selling rose in the first half of 2013 but have since been dropping again. While the influx of business means real estate agents are more necessary than ever, U Aung Kyaw Moe said it s also left some in the business fighting to prove their worth. If the real estate agencies can t provide the best deals in the property sector, agencies and estate agents will disappear. Translation by Win Thaw Tar Engineers discuss plans in front of the Mingalar Mandalay project in Mandalay last week. Photo: Phyo Wai Kyaw
63 3 Open season: Govt budgets for road ahead Union Minister for Construction U Kyaw Lwin discussed the budget, big construction projects and crony issues with The Myanmar Times senior reporter Hsu Hlaing Htun last week in Nay Pyi Taw Photo: Ko Taik What is your ministry s budget for financial year , including additional budget? We got K191.7 billion (US$191 million) for construction of roads and bridges. But we will not be able to fully implement the section between Palae-Gantgaw-Kalay in the Asia-ASEAN Highway No 1 (Myawady, Hpa-an, Thaton, Phayagyi, Meiktila, Monywa, Palae, Gantgaw, Kalay, Tamu Highway) and the section between Kengtung and Loilem on the Asia-ASEAN Highway No 2, that were supposed to be upgraded to a two-way tar road starting from Some other sections of the ASEAN Highway (Thibaw and Loilem, Thaton-Moulmein-Yay, Dawei, Myeik and Kawthoung) still cannot be upgraded to two-way status. The hluttaw has approved an additional budget of K2086 billion. What about the budgets for this year and last? For this financial year, we got K billion. Last year, it was K billion. So we got K billion less than last year. How many projects are planned for this year? The Ministry of Construction has implemented new road-building and upgrading. Road constructions are Kawtkarate Road, Thanbyu Zayat-Phayar Thone Su Road, Kawtkarate-Kyitedone-Azin Road, Kyunhla-Chathin-Kawlin Road and Malun-Sitsano-Yananma-Kyutpone- Kantote Road. We are upgrading the Mandalay-Shwebo-Myitkyina Road, Mandalay-Takaung-Bamaw- Myitkyina Road, Monywa-Pale- Gangaw Road and Kalay-Gangaw Road. Bridge projects of 1000 feet or more include Thanlwin Bridge (Pharsaung) on the Taungoo- Mawchee-Loikaw Road in Kayah State, No 3 Sittaung Bridge over the Kapoun-Myitsu-Htantapin Road in Bago Region, Sunye Bridge and Sinkhonetine Bridge over the Pouktaw-Minpyar Road in Rakhine State, No 2 Bayintnaung Bridge over the Yangon-Pathein Road in Yangon Region and the Mekong Bridge (Myanmar-Laos Friendship Road) over Tarlay- Parsho-Kyinelin Road in eastern Shan State. U Kyaw Lwin, Union Minister for Construction How do you see public opinion on these projects? Myanmar needs many infrastructure projects. I believe people will understand because we pay attention to elected representatives in fulfilling the needs of the country. At the same time, we are making reforms in every department. Has the ministry faced obstacles in implementing the projects? The ministry is undertaking many infrastructure projects throughout the country, including remote areas, as stability and peace improve. We are asking international organisations like JICA, ADB and KOICA to provide financial assistance. What s your opinion of the rumours that cronies have been given priority in tendering? We carry out development tasks with private companies in joint venture and BOT systems. Later, we ll make use of the Public Private Partnership (PPP) system. Starting from this fiscal year, we re buying building materials by inviting open transparent tenders through the media. And we re operating real estate redevelopment projects including building enterprises with the open tender system. What about mountain path transportation and future plans? We re implementing the five-year short-term project and 20-year long-term project to equally develop the whole country, including the states. The ministry is responsible for the Union roads, international connection roads, roads connecting townships, and roads connecting regions and states, while the Ministry of Livestock, Fisheries and Rural Development and the Ministry of Border Affairs take responsibility for roads between townships and villages and border-area roads. Some say road tolls are increasing. Will they be reduced? It is not true that the ministry has increased tolls, which are far lower in Myanmar than international standards require. Some enterprises use the BOT system. There is no plan to reduce tolls. Translation
64 4 By the numbers: the cost of constructing a building This graph shows the breakdown of the average price of building a two-storey building measuring 95 feet by 50ft by 22ft. The total cost comes to nearly K200 million (2000 lakhs, or about US$200,000) with materials being the biggest expense. All figures provided by Marvels Wealth Construction Company. Materials Quantity Unit Unit price(k) Total Price (K) 1 Cement Bags 6,500 14,411,156 2 Brick Nos ,481,242 3 Stone Aggregate Suds 85,000 5,231,773 4 Sand Suds 25,000 2,911,177 5 Broken Brick Suds 45,000 1,134,264 6 Jungle Wood Tons 650,000 27,048, mm Ø M.S Bar 4.46 Tons 850,000 3,794, mm Ø M.S Bar 1.22 Tons 850,000 1,039, mm Ø M.S Bar 1.23 Tons 850,000 1,046, mm Ø M.S Bar 7.85 Tons 850,000 6,674, mm Ø M.S Rod 3.30 Tons 850,000 2,808, Pyinkado Wood 9.53 Tons 1,200,000 11,436, /2 x1-1/2 Beadings Rft , x2 A.C Sheet Nos 1,600 2,955, X-Met Rft 65 1,436, Binding Wire Lbs , Plywood (8 x 4 ) Shts 15,000 7,152, wire Nails Lbs , Butt & Hinge Nos , Window Handle Nos , Tower Bolt Nos , Hook & Eye Nos , Wood Screw Dozs , Hold Fast Nos 50 5, Emulsion Paint Gals 9,700 3,192, Oil Paint Gals 16, , Wall Putty Gals 5, , Roller Nos 2,500 50, Brush Nos 1,500 37, Door Area Sqft 8,000 8,016, Window Area Sqft 5,000 1,800, Chowket Rft 2,000 2,912, Roofing Sheet Sqft 600 3,282, Guttering Rft , Ridge Cover Rft , Roofing Screw Nos 35 35, x 2 x1-6 MS Flat Nos 1, , Bolt & Nut Nos , Bamboo Nos 2,000 6,948, Coinyan Viss 2, , Fuel Gals 4, , Wall Tile (1 x 8 ) sht 450 1,890, Floor Tile (1 x 1 ) sht , White cement lbs 1,000 30, Steel handrailing work Sqft 9,000 2,833,875 Total Cost K140,058,351 A blueprint for success Supervision and a clear contract mean you ll get the building you ve paid for EI EI THU WITH foreign investments flowing into the country, the construction and property markets have become leading options for investors. As a result, some families are choosing to cash out of their current residences by turning them into multi-storey buildings, moving themselves to cheaper, smaller residences and making money on the exchange. It s a tempting option for those lucky enough to own land in a desirable area. With the right help you can end up with a shipshape high-rise building or beautifully landscaped houses even though you don t have any idea at all about the sector yourself. At the same time, however, it s important to consult with the experts if you re considering this for yourself. While the collaborative efforts of owner, engineer and architect can shape desires into ideas and plans into reality, it only works if everyone s on the same page from the beginning. Engineer U Zaw Linn inspects whether materials and procedures defined by both sides are actually the ones being used in construction. Unfortunately, he said, some of the time they re not. In some unscrupulous companies, corners sometimes get cut, and without supervision, the owner may be left none the wiser and dealing with the fallout down the line. The owner and contractor already calculated the designs, the materials and the cost, U Zaw Lin said, describing his role. I have to inspect if these are actually used. My role is between the contractor and the owner, and there are some contractors who want to trick the owners, as they think Material Labour Company Charges A breakdown of construction material costs for a two-storey building the owners won t know. It s all about getting back the value you ve paid for, he said. The difference between building with and without a quality controller is if the contractor is a righteous one, then the owner would get a building equal to the expenditure. If the contractor is tricky, the owner will be faced with a loss. So the first thing the owner should do is to ask advice from acquaintances who have experience in this field. After seven years in the trade himself, U Zaw Lin has found it s important to choose those contractors who are actually capable rather than simply popular. As in any relationship business or otherwise trustworthiness is crucial. How do you build trust? Start with a contract that clearly outlines all aspects of the project, U Zaw Lin advised. Transportation Charges General Installation Septic Tank million (kyat) Then, he added, If any problem arise after building, action can be taken according to the contracts. That s why both sides should make it carefully. U Zaw Lin is presently supervising construction of an eight-storey building on behalf of the owners. Large or small, he said, the durability of a building depends on the materials used. The Yangon City Development Committee rules that any building has to be made to last for at least 50 years, so it s important to make sure that the individual parts add up to the proper whole. U Aung Soe Hlaing, project engineer with Marvels Wealth Construction, agreed that spending time and money on careful contracts and knowledgeable supervision is the surest way to ensure a result that lasts. Translation by Sandar Lwin
65 5 Real estate wars: Yangon's most expensive areas Lanmadaw township K800,000 per square foot (land only) main roads Latha township K1.5 million per square foot (with building) Strand Road Pabedan township K1.3 million per square foot (with building) main roads Pazundaung township K500,000 to K800,000 per square foot (land only) commercial areas Kyauktada township K1.2 million per square foot (with building) Anawrahta road, some commercial areas K550,000; secondary roads K300,000 to K400,000 Botahtaung township K500,000 to K800,000 per square foot (land only) main roads
66 6 Planning ahead to protect the past U Toe Aung, deputy head of YCDC s Department of Roads and Bridges, spoke to Myo Lwin, editor of special publications at The Myanmar Times, about the challenges of retaining the city s heritage in the midst of new development WHAT is the policy of the Yangon City Development Committee in preserving heritage buildings? In order to entrust our historical and cultural heritage to future generations, the history and physical dimensions of the city must be recorded. Among tangible and intangible cultural heritages in this city are historic buildings and urban heritage zones, as well as their surrounding environments. As for tangible cultural properties, there are some lists for the conservation of historical buildings. However, there is no ongoing research on cultural and historical value, except for some prominent buildings. To preserve historical buildings and to regenerate Yangon s unique urban landscape, it s necessary to limit disorderly development while protecting fundamental rights such as property rights and harmonising them with the public interest to create a good urban environment. Guidelines are required for the preservation of the urban landscape. There must be building rules for the conservation of historic building; district rules for the conservation of the urban landscape; and city-wide rules for the conservation of the silhouette of the city that centres on Shwedagon Pagoda. By developing guidelines from building- to city-level, we expect to maintain a unique image of the city with a certain order. Currently, building application processes are being carried out by YCDC to check whether applications for new construction are in line or not. For the implementation of the conservation plan, it is necessary to cooperate with a variety of experts such as urban planners, architects, and historians in the planning stage. It is also urgent to train construction technicians who specialise in conservation repairs of historic buildings in the construction stage. Currently, these types of experts are scarce in Yangon, and therefore repairs have not been carried out appropriately. Human resource development such as research, planning, construction and maintenance is indispensable at each stage. Most of the state-owned buildings in the central part of the downtown, mostly former government offices, have not been used enough as urban facilities for citizens. It is desirable to conserve, renovate and convert these buildings in order for them to become new urban hubs. What is your opinion on the current state of YCDC s heritage preservation? The current urban area is composed of numerous buildings which have been constructed in accordance with the social, economic and cultural needs of time, and which were woven in a multi-layered texture in each area. Currently, in the context of economic growth, the city of Yangon is being exposed to rapid changes caused by the development of private investment. This has resulted in the significant degradation of the urban environment and the fragmentation of the urban space. In order to regulate the changing speed, an urban U Toe Aung Photo: Supplied landscape plan should be formed in each district, and areas to be conserved and developed should be clearly defined. To conserve urban space does not mean letting the environment remain untouched. It is a method to regulate urbanisation for a better quality of life. In order to adapt a unique, diverse and attractive urban space for the future generation, it is urgent to record the current state of the city s rich cultural resources, and to establish guidelines that can be shared by various stakeholders. What issues need to be addressed most urgently? Yangon s heritage is rich and has great potential for conservation-led development the golden pagodas, the assortment of temples, churches and monasteries, the remarkable survival of 19 th - and 20 th -century architecture. But most heritage buildings in Yangon suffer from vacancy and underuse, negligence, and insufficient maintenance and repair. Beyond the danger to individual buildings, our harmonious cityscape is in danger because of unregulated and irresponsible development. Many new buildings are not at all in harmony with the heritage buildings between them, turning Yangon into an ugly patchwork. Invaluable historic views are being forfeited to new high-rise developments. Many investors value the real estate of colonial-era buildings for their prime downtown locations. But low-lying structures often get viewed as impediments to major plans for soaring apartment blocks and office towers. Most conspicuously, zoning laws are non-existent and current legislation contains deficiencies on historic monuments and control of their immediate surroundings. Although 189 buildings are listed by YCDC as heritage sites, hundreds more impressive structures from the same era remain neither protected nor listed. As Southeast Asian cities struggle with modernisation, Most heritage buildings in Yangon suffer from vacancy and underuse, negligence, and in-sufficient maintenance and repair. Beyond the danger to individual buildings, our harmonious cityscape is in danger because of unregulated and irresponsible development U Toe Aung they often forget to protect their urban heritage, only to realise the grave mistake when it is too late. Restriction guidelines, regulations and laws are urgently needed for zoning and land use. YCDC has cooperated with experts from the Ministry of Construction, the Ministry of Science and Technology, the Association of Myanmar Architects, the Yangon Heritage Trust and the JICA [Japan International Cooperation Agency] Study Team to formulate the Strategic Urban Development Plan for Greater Yangon. It then formed the Yangon City Comprehensive Zoning, Land Use and Urban Design Review Working Committee in June 2013 in order to bring about sustainable development to Yangon while preserving its distinct character and enhancing quality of life. What do you think are people s general impressions of heritage buildings in Yangon? For many years, most of the people viewed the heritage buildings as an image of British imperialism. But today people realise these colonial buildings are part of the cultural heritage and represent the history of Yangon. Due to the democratisation and many people having better chances to experience foreign countries, the people are now very impressed with their own city s heritage: the views of Shwedagon Pagoda, the architecture of downtown Yangon, the lakes and wonderful open spaces. Heritage buildings are government-owned, public-owned and privately owned. These structures will be particularly valuable to the developers who own them, as well as to the businesses that occupy them and to the city that enjoys their beauty and quality. One aspect of heritage conservation is the relation between heritage and the citizens who currently reside in historic areas whose livelihood depends on its current status. Heritage preservation is one development activity that can bring socioeconomic benefits to the entire community through a wide range of employment and incomegenerating activities. By focusing on local responsibility over
67 7 preservation and future use, we place heritage where it rightfully belongs, at the very centre of human development. How does the preservation of heritage buildings relate to the rise in tourism? With long histories of growth and rich mixes of cultures, many Southeast Asian cities have accumulated vast historical and cultural heritage assets that are now recognised as being of immeasurable value, not only to their own citizens but to the world as well. These assets are not only in the physical and tangible heritage forms like monuments, structures, buildings and objects but also in the living and intangible heritage forms like dances, rituals, arts, music, food, philosophies, religions, ways of life, communities and traditions. Efforts to preserve cultural heritage are costly, and extraneous spending can be ill-afforded in a developing country, especially where the drive toward economic development and modern living is a priority. Therefore, cultural and historical tourism can be a means to generate the financial resources needed to preserve old buildings, promote local businesses and upgrade the livelihoods of local communities. In Yangon s downtown area, there are a number of precious tourism resources such as historic district around Sule Pagoda, Chinatown with its many shopping centres and so on. In order for tourists or citizens to enjoy these attractive urban spaces, it is recommended to develop attractive and comfortable urban spaces with high quality design. Creating open spaces and 189 Number of buildings listed by Yangon City Development Committee as heritage sites The former Secretariat, or ministers' office, was the site of national hero Bogyoke Aung San's assassination in Closed to the public, today it is one of 189 buildings listed as heritage sites by Yangon City Development Committee. Photo: Ko Taik pedestrian-friendly streets together with street trees, well-designed street furniture and lighting, etc, is important to attract people to move within the urban space. In addition, night markets or lit-up historic buildings attract more people to visit urban spaces at night. How will next year s Heritage Zoning Law affect conservation? For us it is a great opportunity. The specific objectives are: to protect buildings of architectural or historic interest and their settings; to preserve or enhance the character and appearance of conservation areas; to define the importance of urban heritage in the socio-economic and cultural profile of the city; and to promote the conservation, protection or enhancement of the urban heritage of Yangon City, including historic parks, and its interpretation and presentation to the public. What are the future plans for conserving Yangon s heritage buildings? YCDC in collaboration with Yangon Heritage Trust has proposed seven special character areas within a conservation zone: the old administrative core; the Secretariat environs; the social and cultural core; Chinatown; the Indian quarter; the market and environs; and Thayettaw monastic complex. Each zone has its own characteristics and uniqueness so we ll set up conservation guidelines and a Conservation Management Plan for each. Any chance of making the Sule Pagoda area restricted? Sule Pagoda marks the architectural and spiritual heart of downtown Yangon. The first city plan, known as the Fraser Plan, was drawn up in the 1850s. It was based on an earlier mapping of the city that proposed a chessboard pattern of narrow streets running north-south intersected by wide boulevards running east-west to form a grid along the riverside with the Sule Pagoda as its centre. During the colonial era, this area combined high-end commercial buildings with heavy-duty public offices. Today, the Sule Pagoda roundabout is a busy intersection due mostly to a bus depot situated near City Hall. It s also surrounded on all sides by impressive and sizeable heritage buildings. When the heights of the buildings located on the roadside of Sule Pagoda Street become taller these obstruct the important views and the cityscape. It is urgent to protect the Sule Pagoda s visual axis and the urban landscape of the city centre. In this area, the average numbers of floors in heritage buildings is about five. If higher buildings get built, these will inevitably impair the continuity and integrity of the roadside landscape, so these will be controlled by zoning regulations. As well, some of the advertisement billboards covering the façade of the buildings may interrupt the continuity and integrity of the landscape. So billboards will also be limited in the area. The Inland Water Transport office on Pansodan Street is among the colonial-era heritage buildings listed for protection by YCDC. Photo: Ko Taik
68 8 Working out where to live Soaring property prices prevent many Yangon workers from living close to their jobs, making for long commutes and even longer traffic jams. Reporter Aung Kyaw Nyunt talks to four residents about renting, owning and where they d like to live if they could afford it Daw Kyin Shein Kitchen staff at The Myanmar Times Palae Myothit, Ward 3 I ve lived in this township for 15 years. About 10 years ago our family rented a house, but now we live in a former playground area after we were given permission by the ward administrator to live there for five years. So we saved the cost of hiring a house. I leave about 4:30am every morning and I reach the office at 6am. In the evening, it s two hours on the bus because of traffic jams. I take more time to get to the office but I can't live near the office because rental costs are so high, hundreds of thousands of kyat. If we get pushed out of our current land, we will have to face renting a house. The value of square feet of land is K5,000,000. About 10 years ago, this land was worth just K400,000. I think the price jump is because of the launch of big highway projects. The government must offer us land at affordable prices. If not, the poorer members of the public will be worried about finding a place to live. Ma Khine Zar Lwin Lawyer Dala township It takes 30 minutes to an hour to go to my office. I pay K500 for a motorbike taxi to Dala jetty. It takes 30 minutes on the ferry to reach Yangon jetty. If I miss the first ferry, it will be a one-hour wait for the next ship. My office is on Pansodan Street, so I don t need to ride the bus. When I have to go Hlaing Tharyar, Insein, Eastern District Court and Northern District Court, my day starts at 6am from my home. If I am late, I risk not arriving in time because of traffic jams. Once, if you wanted to buy a house in Dala, you could buy if you had about K10 million. Today the price of houses has jumped greatly. For housing brokers, it s a businessman s game, especially when they hear of a bridge project. Although the land price has risen, the bridge project has not launched. I want to buy a house downtown and live there, but I can t affort to rent or buy. Rental charges are K100,000 a month and advance payment of rental charges is over K2 million. Also there will be broker charges. I hear the government is drawing up a bill of land prices. If it is successful, we the public must be hopeful for the future. If not, we can only not dream of living in the downtown. Ma Tin Tin Soe Housewife Bahan township Rentals here on Min Street start at K120,000 for a space of 10 feet by 60ft [3 metres by 18m]. If the space is 20ft by 60ft [6m by 18m], it costs around K150,000. In the past we had to pay a deposit of K3.5 million and the monthly fee was K40,000 or K50,000. I can t afford to pay deposits so I ve made a one-year contract. If you want to buy a place of 20ft by 60ft, it will be K50 milion. It is very frustrating to make a contract. Our house is two storeys and we share with another household on the top floor. Even though the place is expensive, I don t want to move elsewhere as we know each other well. My place is near the market and it s just 30 minutes to downtown areas though traffic jams are another matter. Places like Dagon University and the bus terminal are closer from here. I don t want to live in the downtown areas where there are numerous people and so many cars and I can't breathe well. I like this place. I d like to buy an apartment here if I could afford it. We used to live in Mayangone township, but my parents, who are government servants, moved to Hmawbi for three years. Moving to another place is not easy. I was attending medical college when we had to move and I was late for school lessons as there was no school ferry. Now I work on U Chit Maung Street. Since it takes about two hours to return to Hmawbi, I found a place in the Kyaukmyaung area instead. Now it takes about 15 minutes. The rental fee for an apartment is more than K100,000, and we have to pay a deposit of K300,000. Living in a hostel is not good. It s not free. We have discipline and we need to abide by these rules. But I can t help it. I prefer living in an apartment alone to sharing with other people. I like tall buildings and living on an upper floor. You get more fresh air. Ground floors are normally noisy and sometimes difficult to breathe in. The best is living in a condominium building with enough land space or in a detached building with some land space in the compound. It is easy to find food, but it s difficult to get a place to stay. Ko Thet Naing Oo Student Tarmwe township
69 9 Condo culture catching on with Yangon buyers NYAN LYNN AUNG Y ANGON S growing market of potential, middle-class property owners are giving up the dream of owning an actual home and opting for the urban alternative condominium ownership. These new buyers, say agents and developers, are responding to Yangon s shift to a more urban market, where buyers are less concerned about outdoor space and more interested in convenience, amenities and cost. The increased demand for better condos is also driving developers to build smarter, more solid buildings in line with international standards. When condominiums were introduced 10 years ago, Myanmar buyers responded to this new type of accommodation with scepticism, worried that the country s infrastructure was not ready to accommodate multi-level housing. What if they got stuck in the lift due to a sudden power cut? In the event of a power cut, how would the water reach their unit? Today, these doubts and worries are less prominent and public opinion has shifted toward a preference for condominiums. The lure of 24-hour security, generators and modern lifts are drawing the middle class in. Still, not all condos have features and services that meet international-definition standards, especially those built within the last 10 years. One reason was a lack of existing laws regulating the industry. Sometimes, stairways in older buildings are uneven and unsafe, or cracks are prominent along the walls. A new draft condominium law now making its way through the Pyithu Hluttaw (parliament), but the law does not make building codes or construction standards mandatory for condominium developers, nor does it specify parking allowances, lift, or public space or service requirements for residents. It is buyers who are demanding better construction, more oversight in the process and more services built into the final product and it is their demands that will change the market. Ko Zeyar Nyein, marketing manager of the Yadanar Myaing construction company, said living standards are changing and the public is demanding a better product. These changes have impact on the way we live, and accommodation, he said. People Demand for better services is driving the market to improve Ko Zeyar Nyein are selecting houses that match their necessities. Based on that, there are more multi-storey buildings and condos. What buyers are looking for now, he said, is not just a home, but a living oasis that will make them comfortable in their life without stress. They want one place for living, parking, sports, recreation and shopping. Therefore, the new condominium apartments being built these days in Myanmar are trying to have these necessary services built in. They are also willing to pay extra maintenance fees to get the services, granted they can get what they want for their money. The demand for better services is driving the market to improve, Ko Zeyar Nyein said. Newer condos are being maintained better and developers now have to provide maintenance services for the elevators, car parking area and safety measures in the buildings. U Lar Ze, administrative director of Yadanar Tun Construction, said a guaranteed parking spot is high on the list of services these new buyers are demanding. "These days, the difficulty for car parking is everywhere. To solve that difficulty, we have to consider about an area for car parking when we build condominiums. The customers also make their choices depending on car parking, he said. Ma Sandi Wine is the manager of a company that has just established its office in a condominium near the Shwegonedaing junction. She said her company chose a new condominium instead of an older apartment because it had enough space and parking for her company s needs. To be able to provide the necessary services for the residents, the condominium apartments usually form some kind of oversight committee and fund the committee themselves, thereby guaranteeing that they will be satisfied with the services. "I chose the condominium mainly because of the spacious room size. It is also more convenient to live than the ordinary apartments, said Ma Ei Ei Cho, a resident of a condominium apartment at Yekyaw Street, Pazundaung township. There is no need to worry about security and also water supply. Thiri condominium in Yangon. Photo: Staff But sometimes we have to wait for about two days if the lift is out of order. Normally it is okay, as there is a private generator and security at night is also okay, she said. Residents of condominium apartments have had to face many problems and difficulties due to a lack of oversight from governmental agencies. U Lar Ze, from Yadanar Tun Construction, said the existence of the new condominium law is already changing the game for developers. There is no specific definition for the condominium apartment here yet, he said. The definition of a condominium and the standard features for it will be in place in the future... Even now the buyer s consideration has shifted from just living to car parking areas, U Lar Ze said. Although the new condominium law does not require more of developers in terms of building standards, it does open the door to foreign ownership and therefore, international clients who bring their standards of construction, with them to the market. For the moment, the local purchase alone is not enough, Ko Zeyar Nyein said, But when the condominium law is enacted and the foreigner residents come in, the culture of living in condominium apartments could expand even more than now. Translation by Sandar Lwin
72 Bathroom upgrades a sign of changing times 12 NANDAR AUNG AS the country s population accumulates more wealth, buyers tastes and preferences for bathroom amenities and luxuries are changing. Now, seated toilets and even, bathtubs are all the rage. Traditionally, bathrooms have not been a place of sanctuary for Myanmar people. Until 10 years ago, most bathrooms in Myanmar had squat toilets and some still had detached rooms for conducting business. Even today, most middle-class families use large tubs and bowls or cups to take cold water bucket showers. Because of the hot climate, few have hot-water heaters. The bathroom is now a room of focus for Myanmar home and condo owners, said U Tun Tun Naing, director of Myanmar Pride International Ltd., which imports and supplies bathroom materials for construction companies and homeowners. Many renters and homeowners, he said, are expatriate Myanmar people who are now coming home and want to integrate the comforts of their overseas life into their new lives in their home country. They are seeking a space where they can experience personal relaxation with the latest bathroom wares of various designs. High on the list of demands, he said, is a clean water supply with hot and cool heating options, porcelain basins and sterile, seated toilets. Today, in Myanmar, there are the migrants who come back and settle in the country and also many architects and interior decorators, U Tun Tun Naing said. International standard hotel construction and renovations are also booming. Some people even go abroad to buy bathroom wares. Customer demands are increasing... These days, if a A salesperson explains the quality of fittings to a customer at the Myanmar Pride International showroom last week in Yangon. Photo: Thiri Lu new brand enters the market, it can easily find market share. The customer s preference is for better quality and durable products. There is no lack of supply for products, but finding quality products can take time and a good dose of discrimination. According to U Tun Tun Naing, buyers have become increasingly picky in the past few years as the market has opened up. A few years ago, he said, they would accept lower-quality imported goods that would often break, or fall apart, after a few months. Now, he said, everyone is concerned about their investment and customers are demanding higher-priced, more durable goods. Durable goods should be used for long-term investments, he said. Before, people usually preferred the cheaper bathroom wares and did not use to ask about the product's durability, quality and functions. Only these days people are interested in them. Today, suppliers can no longer cheat the customers by selling China-made products as though they were from Thailand. Improved internet access and a more informed customer means buyers are no longer relying on the supplier s knowledge alone as they shop. For suppliers, U Tun Tun Naing said, the competition is stronger and, although sales are still high, profits are not as generous as they used to be. Today, fair competition from various imported brands has developed within the bathroomware market. Imports are still strong from China and Thailand, but now more expensive products made in Japan, for example, are also common in Myanmar. As customers tastes continue to change, their requests are also changing, said Ma Aye Thandar Aung, who has been distributing TOTO brand products since Although most are still concerned with transforming their basic bathroom into a more modern design, others are already asking for specialised products. For example, she said, she is now getting requests for bathroom decor, and even products that conserve water and are environmentally friendly. The desire to upgrade the bathroom experience is not limited to Yangon or the country s other urban areas either, Ma Aye Thandar Aung said. Customers are selecting seated toilets instead of traditional squat models for sanitation purposes, she said. This especially true for hotels and guest houses, where bathroom conditions can determine how the hotel is graded by reviewers and guests. Sanitation is essential for every individual, Ma Aye Thandar Aung said. Now, sitting toilets are used not only in the big cities but in provincial areas as it helps with health issues and is essential for elders and the disabled... Local hotels have also started choosing good quality sanitation items. Translation by Sandar Lwin
73 13 Elevators give lift to high-rise lifestyles MYA KAY KHINE IN 1854, Elisha Otis caused a sensation at the World Trade Fair in New York. Climbing on top of a platform, he ordered it raised high above the ground and then, to the audience s horror, purposefully cut the only rope holding him up. The platform sank a few inches then stabilised, thanks to a system of locks which clamped the so-called safety elevator in place as soon as it started to descend too quickly. All safe, gentlemen, Otis proclaimed. And since then, elevators have revolutionised the way we live, turning cities into vertical habitats, acting as subways leading to the sky, allowing us to build up instead of out. The Otis elevator was first used in Myanmar in And with the boom in the construction of high-rises post-2010, elevator use is increasingly on the rise in Yangon. It s also a complicated business. Elevators depend on the design of the building, said elevator engineer Ko Saw Lu. For example, old elevators in some old government hospitals don t have machine rooms the 14-foothigh room sticking out above the roof of the building, from which the elevator is powered, meaning that the drive machinery must be contained within the shaft itself. If this elevator is damaged, it must be replaced with another of the same design. Ko Kyaw Zay Tun Thu, chief operations officer for Naing Construction s elevator engineering group, says other countries usually require elevators in any building over four floors. Here, the normal practice is six floors. Elevators are easier to install in condos in which rich residents will live than in normal buildings which won t be lived in by the wealthy, Ko Saw Lu said. If there is an elevator in a regular six-floor building, there also needs to be space left for the elevator shaft and that will increase the price of the flats. Also there s the issue that those on the ground floor don t want to pay elevator charges, but everything in the building will be more expensive because of it. The price of an elevator can be anywhere from US$25,000 to $90,000, depending on a number of factors: how many people it will carry (usually six to 24); its speed (usually about a metre per second); the number of floors; whether destinations are announced Photo: automatically; whether the lift is air-conditioned; the interior decorating style; and whether or not various other features are included, such as a card reader, a central control system, a fire system and something called an automatic rescue device (ARD). This last option is to do with electricity outages something to plan for in other countries, but to plan on in Myanmar. When power cuts out, an elevator with an ARD will continue to the nearest floor and then open. But the battery backup lasts six hours, beyond which it won t function. Given the extra costs of ARD and the frequency of power outages, the safe choice is likely to install a generator. As they re powered by electricity, elevator installation is governed by the 1984 Electricity Law and the 1985 Procedures for the Electricity Law. Inspectors from the Ministry of Electric Power's Electrical Inspection Department must check elevators yearly to assess whether the permit can be renewed. U Kyu Sein, a retired deputy director of the Department of Power Inspection, said elevators also fall under the building code created by the Myanmar Engineering Society, the Ministry of Construction and UN-HABITAT which was confirmed in 2012 and can now be acquired on CD for K1000. What about Otis s claim? Are elevators really safe? Only one in 12 million elevator rides involves some sort of anomaly, usually something simple like a door failing to open automatically on first try. Only one person in history has died due to a safety elevator actually free falling; the few other injuries and deaths that happen each year are mostly due to clothing trapped in doors, accidents during maintenance, or faulty repair jobs. Compared to other forms of transportation, elevators have a sterling service record. In fact, one could say they re are the safest vehicles in existence. What about the common fear of getting trapped? It is, admittedly, more likely here than elsewhere. When companies install elevators, U Kyu Sein said, they have to offer training to staff on how to rescue someone accidentally shut in an elevator. But new hires aren t always given the same training later on, meaning the chances of being rescued quickly may depend on who happens to be on shift at any given time. Depending on your feelings on confined spaces, that may be good motivation to take the stairs. Just think of it as free exercise. World's priciest homes If you ve ever imagined your dream house, here are a few to inspire you. Mind you, these all come with a mighty bill. 1. Antilia - $1 billion Here is the most expensive home in the world. This outrageously opulent palace of 27 storeys located in South Mumbai belongs to business tycoon Mukesh Ambani of Reliance Industries Limited, and was reportedly built by the billionaire for his wife, Nita. The 400,000 square feet mansion, designed by architects Perkins and Will of Chicago, is as tall as a regular 60 floor building, owing to its specially high ceilings. 2. Villa Leopolda - $506 million Located in the astonishingly beautiful town of Villefranchesur-Mer in the French Riviera, Villa Leopolda, named after King Leopold II of Belgium, is the second-most expensive home in the world. The luxurious residence spread over 10 acres of French country now belongs to Brazilian philanthropist Lily Safra. spread over 63 acres, a seaside mansion in Sagaponack, New York, owned by American businessman and investor Ira Leon Rennert. The 110,000- square-foot property includes 29 bedrooms, 39 bathrooms (one of them is fitted with a hot tub worth $150,000!), a 91-foot-long dining room, five tennis courts, a bowling alley, squash courts, basketball courts, manicured gardens and a fantastic sea view. Its net value adds up to $248 million after tax assessments. 5. Hearst Castle - $165 million William Randolph Hearst s Castle, one of the most famous addresses in the United States, is undoubtedly one of the most expensive as well. Rising from the mist covered La Cuesta Encantada or The Enchanted Hill, Hearst Castle encompasses 165 rooms and 127 acres of gardens, walkways, water bodies and terraces. 7. The Pinnacle - $155 million Yellowstone Club owner Tim Blixseth s fairytale mansion in Montana takes the seventh spot in our list. Nestled snugly among the snowy hillside, The Pinnacle, though not as huge as the other properties that make it to the top 10, is a winner on account of its wondrous location and topnotch amenities. 8. The Manor - $150 million The Manor, situated in Holmby Hills, Los Angeles, California originally belonged to noted television producer Aaron Spelling. Designed as a French Cha teu, The Manor includes 4.6 acres of land, on which stand 123 rooms, not to mention 56,000 square feet of space. This country retreat, which is the largest residential property in Los Angeles County, is currently owned by Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone s daughter Petra Ecclestone. 3. The Penthouse, One Hyde Park - $211 million This one is probably the most unbelievably priced property on the list. Today, the towers are inhabited by a host of ultra-rich and famous names. 4. Fairfield Pond- $198 million Named after the Atlantic water body facing it, Fairfield Pond is 6. Franchuk Villa - $161 million Franchuk Villa, located in Upper Phillimore Gardens, London, UK started off as a preperatory school for girls. The villa spanning 21,000 square feet is owned by Elena Pinchuk daughter of former Ukranian President Leonid Danylovych Kuchma. 9. Updown Court - $138 million Windlesham village in Surrey, England, has it s very own sightseeing spectacle in the form of Updown Court, a Queen Anne-style luxury mansion originally owned by Major General Sir Philip Ward and his family until his death, after which the house was sold to Prince Sami Gayed of Egypt. Antilia, 27 storeys, is located in South Mumbai. The mansion itself housed 103 rooms and an underground garage big enough to hold eight limousines. 10. Hala Ranch - $135 million A uniquely beautiful creation in Aspen, Colorado, the Hala Ranch, named by its original owner Prince Bandar bin Sultan, stands alone, surrounded by rich green conifers on grassy hills. The 90- acre ranch on Rocky Mountain includes a fifteen-bedroom house spanning 56,000 square feet, with 16 bathrooms.
74 14 Reflections on a changing city Dominating the exterior of many of Yangon s new buildings, glass is rapidly changing the look of the city itself AYE THIDA KYAW THE colonial-style buildings for which Yangon is famous reflect the qualities of those who designed them the British thought their empire would last forever, and their architecture mirror this, with solid foundations, ornamented exteriors and pillars to keep things up. Now, a more modern approach to architecture is taking over transparent and reflective, both there and not there, it catches the eye while keeping the focus on action, not edifice. Stone-age societies made use of naturally occurring glass, and human glassmaking dates back to the days of ancient Egypt at least. But the way glass being integrated into buildings in Myanmar has changed in the last few years. Architects are starting to use it not just for windows, but also for skylights, shelves and staircases. Using glass became popular in Myanmar in imitation of international designs, said Yangon architect U Ye Myint. The concept [of how to use glass] has changed. Builders and buyers used to think of glass as something that let in light or, in the worst-case scenario, intruders. But the stigmas surrounding glass are changing. Our customers used to think that using glass everywhere would lesson security and privacy, but the technology has been modified and their tastes have changed, U Ye Myint said. Glass offers a more elegant and freer look than brick, allowing better integration with landscaping and design both inside and out. Windows and mirrors also make rooms appear more airy and spacious. Not that glass is entirely worryfree. High-rise buildings require thicker glass (6 millimetres or more) for safety, U Ye Myint said, which can lead to higher costs in construction. Highly tempered safety glass costs about K5000-K6000 a square foot, while normal glass is about K2500 for the same size, according to Daw Su Su Hein, from laminated glass factory Super Select Glass Decoration. Glass also demands a security system, to prevent break-andentry, as well as a design that will keep ultraviolet rays from fading furnishings. That s why solar glass or laminated glass should be used for anti-reflective purposes, U Ye Myint said. Most apartment and housing complexes in Yangon don t use large windows for these reasons, he said and using glass in hilly areas or other regions threatened by natural disaster is something that makes the architect think twice. But for office buildings in areas like Yangon, glass is many ways the perfect exterior. By placing toilets and lifts in the centre of the building, you allow sunlight in on all sides, U Ye Myint said, making for a more cheerful, modern workspace. Although U Ye Myint started using glass in this way in 1995, it wasn t until the construction of Sakura Tower in 1999 and Sule s Centrepoint Towers Hotel started in 1995, stalled in 1998 and finally completed in 2010 that the look began to catch on in Yangon s downtown and elsewhere. Now, glass provides the centerpiece of one of the country s most famous new buildings, the Myanmar International Convention Centre in Nay Pyi Taw, which played host to the 2013 World Economic Forum on East Asia. It depends on the nature of building, U Ye Myint added. We could not use an all-glass design for hotels a remider that, price Construction of Centrepoint Towers Hotel on Sule Street started in 1995, stalled in 1998, and was finally completed in In the meantime, the glass look began to catch on in Yangon s downtown and elsewhere. Photo: Aung Tun Win aside, Yangon s downtown real estate market doesn t quite match up with Manhattan s, where the recently built Standard Hotel has drawn criticism for its transparent all-glass façade which leaves guests on display for all to see. Of course, the glass trend isn t just about style. It s also about supply. The building of new glass factories in Myanmar a few years ago brought down prices, meaning that glass no longer needed to be imported from China or Thailand. Still, U Ye Myint says, public interest is ultimately what s tilting the industry toward glass. Our customers changing mindset also helped our idea [to integrate more glass into designs]. It is obviously costly, but they don t reject using it as the property price is much higher than the cost of the construction price today.
76 16 Putting a roof over your head Not just an expression of style, the roof is a vital consideration for choosing a new home Photo: Ko Taik WA LONE LOOKING for a good foundation for your home? Don t look down, roofing experts say, look up: The aesthetics, insulation and weather-proofing of your household all start with a good roof. Fortunately for homeowners, options have expanded dramatically over the past few years, with more materials and colours available than ever before. While the good news is that there s something for every price range, the choices can sometimes be overwhelming. That s why, whether building or renovating, it s always best to consult architects and decorators on what kind of roofing material will best complement your budget and the overall design of your home s exterior. As with any purchase, of course, it s also easier to make the right choice if you ve done some research ahead of time about what s on the market. The most popular choice is coloured steel roofs, which are mostly imported from Taiwan and China, with some also coming from Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam and elsewhere. Rates of importing coloured steel roofs in the year 2000 were small, said Daw Mya Thida, who owns Kaung Kin Thit coloured steel roof shop. But now construction material stores sell them more than anything else. She said Chinese coloured steel roofs are cheaper, at K850 a square foot for a 0.36mm thickness, but Taiwanese materials, which go for K950, are better quality. Taiwan-made roofing is coated with aluminum under the paint. It won t rust if the paint peels off, Daw Mya Thida said. Those on a budget, however, may look to Chinese materials, the thinnest of which goes for K450 a square feet. Since this price isn t much different from the price of a thatched roof, many who formerly would have chosen thatch are now able to opt for steel instead. This provides more long-lasting protection, according to the owners of a construction materials business in Saw Bwar Gyi Gone sales centre. Those coloured steel roofs have been popular for four or five years due to durability, said Daw Nwe Nwe, sales manager of Shwe Sin Min coloured steel roof shop. Plus [customers] can choose the colour which suits the building s design and the surroundings. Daw Nwe Nwe added that there is no difference in price according to colour. So what pairs well with the Myanmar landscape? Most go for colours that match the environment, she said: The most popular are reddish brown, sky blue and green. Orange, dark brown and light green roof are also available, but are proving much less popular with buyers. The drawbacks of a steel roof are that they re hot in the sun and noisy in the rain both of which Myanmar gets a lot. Both problems can be mitigated by installing insulators such as fibreglass, wool and foil under the roof. But you may also want to consider a few alternatives as well. Coloured zinc roofs are usually imported, but you can order the design you like in factories in the Shwepyithar and Hlaingtharyar industrial zones. The exoticsounding choices include wave, concave wave, convex wave, universe, Taiwan design, eagle design and classic. Another option is concrete tiles. Popular among the moderately well-to-do, they re mostly found in townships outside the big cities. The downside, U Aung Lin Tun said, is that concrete tiles can become stained with mould within five years, which will reduce the appeal of your property. The priciest option is clay tiles. Quiet in the rain, cool in the sun, fireretardant, efficient at draining water and coated with enamel to discourage mould build-up, clay tiles are usually only affordable for the rich. Daw Win Min Thant, from Zin Htet cement and construction materials business, said clay tiles currently make up about 20 percent of the market. They re usually found in resort bungalows, hotel projects, single houses and company offices into which owners can afford to pour a lot of money. The cost of roofing with clay tiles is 20 times more than with zinc tiles, said U Aung Lin Tun from EVA Company, which orders tiles from Thailand s SCG Company. The investment can pay off in the long term, however. Salesperson U Myo Thant from Natural Clay Company said their tiles, made as you d guess from natural clay use Japanese technology and can last up to 90 years. Of course, money s not the only factor to consider. Another urgent issue when putting on a new roof is timing. Remember, whether thatch or zinc, steel or clay, there s no time like the present to get your roof sorted. After all, no one likes finding out they should have put on a new roof last winter especially not when the first sign of trouble is the drip-drip of monsoon rain in your living room. Translation by Win Thaw Tar
78 Art scene finds new home in old landmarks As works of art themselves, it s no surprise that some of Yangon s famous colonial buildings have been turned into galleries showcasing the works of both old and new generations of painters and sculptors 18 ZON PANN PWINT FOR decades the historical worth of Yangon s colonialera architecture was largely overlooked. Roots ran deep, causing cracks in the walls that widened slowly over time. Floorboards decayed. Timber window frames were ruined through years of neglect. Now that s all changing. While many buildings are beyond hope, others are being given a new lease on life. Revived and restored, some of the best examples of British colonial architecture left in Asia are being repurposed into new spaces which put their unique charm and historical character to modern use. Who has the motivation and the money to take on these transformations? If you ve been to an art gallery lately, chances are you know the answer. Here s a look at three of the city s hottest gallery spaces, all located in renovated colonial buildings. Pansodan Scene The imposing front of 144 Pansodan Street is defaced with large signboards, and the walls of the three-storey building have been marred by coats of multicoloured paint. But you shouldn t judge a building by its façade: Head inside and climb the stairs to the second floor and you ll find an old room being renovated into a place where appearances are everything. It s not ready yet, but the space is the future home of a new art gallery called Pansodan Scene. The colonial-era buildings never fail to draw my attention, owner and artist U Aung Soe Min told The Myanmar Times. As an artist, I have dream of opening art galleries in these buildings. The ground floor of the building is occupied by Kyaw Home Mart and the first floor houses Sarpay Lawka bookstore. But many years ago, the building was the famous address of TE Jumal Silk and Carpet. The exact time the building was constructed is unknown, U Aung Soe Min said. But TE Jumal Silk and Carpet Store influenced authors writings. One wrote that the business of the store continued to flourish till the post-war years. The store was nationalised in 1964, but U Aung Soe Min hopes the newly restored address will take hold of the public s imagination once again. The grand opening is still to come the renovation won t be finished until December but the venue is already vibrant, with movie screenings, jazz performances and a number of art shows already happening. U Aung Soe Min is no stranger to the artistic scene. Along with his wife Nance Cunningham, he opened Pansodan Art Gallery, located on the first floor of 286 Pansodan Street since He also publishes the weekly Pansodan arts and culture journal, covering the local scene in both Myanmar and English. The art galleries in converted colonial-era buildings will stimulate public interest in these buildings and motivate people to preserve them. Gallery 65 Juxtaposed with newer structures along Yaw Min Gyi Road sits a charming colonial-era residence with a concrete base and a wooden first floor. For decades, passersby especially foreigners stopped in front of the Pedestrians walk past a colonial-era building on Pansodan Street now blocked by advertising billboards. Photo: Ko Taik unique house to take pictures of it. Some even asked to look inside. While the first floor remains a family home, the ground floor was remade in 2010 to become Gallery 65. Gallery owner U Myint Lwin, who grew up in the house, said turning the property into an art venue is the realisation of a 20-year dream. His parents have been living in the house since the 1950s, while his mother s uncle lived on the ground floor. After his uncle s death six years ago, his parents continued living upstairs, while the ground floor was converted into storage. It was then that U Min Lwin asked his mother for permission to use the ground floor as an art space. With his parents permission, he repainted the walls and installed some lighting. He was careful not to decrease the architectural value of the property. The colonial style of architecture and art galleries are very well matched, U Myint Lwin said. Of four similarly built properties on Yaw Min Gyi, two were destroyed during World War II, and the third was demolished 20 years ago and replaced with a block of apartments. U Min Lwin said hopes are higher for the Gallery 65 building. It is structurally sound, he said. The wooden ceiling is elegant and is in good condition. So is business. The gallery is booked up until next March, according to U Min Lwin, with exhibits featuring mostly local artists. Lokanat Gallery Lokanat Gallery substantially predates the recent heritage conversion trend. It s the longestrunning gallery in the country. Founded in 1971 by agreement between the gallery s board of directors and nine member artists, Lokanat operates as a non-profit NGO, staging exhibitions by both members and non-members. Artist U Pe Nyunt Way was among the founders of the gallery. At the time, artists didn t have much choice in terms of where to exhibit their artworks. So they asked the government for a proper place to hold regular exhibitions. In 1971, the artists were offered a hall in the first floor of Sofaer s buildings at Pansodan, U Pe Nyunt Way said. Built in 1906, the building has a varied history. According to the book 30 Heritage Buildings of Yangon, it s housed everything from a high-end cigar shop to Reuters which at that time was sending the news by telegram. The gallery is run by member artists alone, without outside funding, so tight budgets mean major renovations to the building have gone undone. But with more international collectors visiting, and with ATMs and credit cards starting to make big-ticket purchases easier than ever, interest in Myanmar art is set to skyrocket a rosy picture indeed for Lokanat and the other galleries framing themselves in the city s colonial past.
79 19 Behind the façades: Myanmar's top 20 architects As chosen by the Association of Myanmar Architects in November 2013, these are 20 prominent architects, whose visions are transforming the country Dr Aung Sea Sar U Zin Min Swe Daw Yuzana Lwin U Maw Lin U Sithu Myint Swe U Sun Oo U Thaw U Thet Naing Shein U Win Myint U Zarni Aung U Myo Myint (U Percy) U Sithu Myint Swe Freelance ST & T Architects U Zarni Aung 2Architects Dr Yuzana Lwin DNH Architects U Saw Phyu Thein Freelance U Thaw M Thaw & Associates U Aung Myint Amenity Design Daw Thin Thin Aye Eit-Si-Tan Co U Thet Naing Shein Marvel Architects Daw Hla Su Myat Design Valley U Sun Oo Design 2000 U Zin Min Swe C.A.D Architecture U Khaing Win Lat Modular Architects Daw Chaw Kalyar Statement Architects Dr Aung Sea Sar The Grand Sunday U Myo Zaw Myint Ein Mon Architects U Myint Wai Scale Architect Associates U Win Myint Utopia Architects U Maw Lin U Nyein Chan Soe Living Design architects & New Century Group planners Architecture
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