Myanmar Monitor Weekly

Politics

Myanmar’s hard-line monks regroup after political change
Over a thousand hardline Buddhists gathered on the outskirts of Yangon for the annual summit of their ultra-nationalist group on 5 June, as the anti-Muslim network looks to stay relevant under Myanmar’s new civilian leadership. The gathering celebrated the third anniversary of the founding of Ma Ba Tha, which has been at the forefront of anti-Muslim sentiment in Myanmar in recent years.
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NLD reshuffle planned with coming internal election
The National League for Democracy is preparing to hold internal elections, the party’s secretariat announced on 7 June. The internal elections come as many party members have assumed new responsibilities, while others have been expelled or are for other reasons unable to carry out their duties. A nationwide internal election to fill vacant seats within the party’s central committees in townships, districts, and states and regions will start on 15 June.
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Foreign Affairs

Suu Kyi needed for ASEAN image boost: Singapore PM
Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong asked Aung San Suu Kyi to use her high profile in the international community to boost the status of ASEAN during a visit to Naypyidaw on 7 June, his first state visit to the country since the new government took office at the end of March.
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Business and Investment

Prepaid cards to ease congestion on Myanmar-China trade route
A prepaid card system has been introduced to cut queues at toll gates along the main trading route between Myanmar and China in an attempt to reduce severe traffic congestion and free up trade. The dangerous two-lane trading route has grown increasingly congested over the past few years, and fruit and vegetables destined for China’s Yunnan province often rot before they arrive.
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BOT Lease eyes first foreign representative office
BOT Lease – the leasing arm of Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ – is applying to be the first foreign leasing company to open a representative office in Myanmar. The firm first applied to open an office in 2013, before the country welcomed two waves of foreign banks to set up branches and the new Financial Institutions Law passed in January, which designates leasing companies as non-bank financial institutions.
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Singapore exploring multi-city flights in Myanmar
Singapore is looking to introduce multi-city flights within Myanmar by its carriers Singapore Airlines or SilkAir, Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said on 8 June in a visit to Yangon. The current 49 direct flights a week between Singapore and Myanmar are international, with flights to and from Singapore and Mandalay, or Singapore and Yangon.
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