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Watchdog group says most Myanmar log exports are illegal; ban likely to have little effect

YANGON, Myanmar - Most of Myanmar's log exports in recent years have been illegal according to international trade data, an environmental watchdog group said Tuesday, in a sign that an export ban due to begin next week is likely to have little effect. The state Myanma Timber Enterprise said the government will prohibit log exports starting April 1 to reduce deforestation and boost the country's wood processing industry.

Japan pledges 24 bil. yen in fresh loans to Myanmar

Japan on Monday pledged 24 billion yen in fresh loans to Myanmar to set up electricity supply networks in central part of the country, according to Japanese officials. The new pledge was made by visiting Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida during his meeting with Myanmar President Thein Sein at the Presidential Palace in the capital Naypyitaw, they said. Thein Sein thanked Japan for the assistance and restated his determination to create good conditions for foreign investors in Myanmar, they said.

Japan to extend fresh aid of 63 bil. yen in loans to Myanmar

Japan pledged fresh aid worth about 63 billion yen in loans to Myanmar on Sunday, mainly to help the Southeast Asian country's infrastructure-building projects. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe unveiled the aid during talks at his office in Tokyo with Myanmar's President Thein Sein, who came to Japan to attend the regional summit between Japan and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.

Abe eyes pledging 60 bil. yen in loans to Myanmar at bilateral summit

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe plans to pledge 60 billion yen in loans to Myanmar, chiefly to help it build infrastructure, at an upcoming summit with President Thein Sein, a Japanese government source said Thursday. Abe and Thein Sein, who is to attend a special summit of Japanese and ASEAN leaders from Friday in Tokyo, will also sign a memorandum of understanding on Japanese support for Myanmar's health and medical sectors in the meeting likely to take place Sunday, the source said.

Chinese VP attends SEA Games opening ceremony, meets Myanmar president

Chinese VP attends SEA Games opening ceremony, meets Myanmar president NAY PYI TAW, Dec. 11 (Xinhua) -- Chinese Vice Premier Liu Yandong attended the opening ceremony of the 27th Southeast Asian Games held in Myanmar and met with Myanmar President U Thein Sein, Vice Presidents Sai Mauk Kham and U Nyan Tun separately over Tuesday and Wednesday. Liu said her attendance to the opening ceremony not only aimed to share the grand event but also to implement the important consensus of both sides to push forward China-Myanmar friendly cooperation.

(Sports) Thailand's Chinlone team gets close behind champion Myanmar

(Sports) Thailand's Chinlone team gets close behind champion Myanmar NAY PYI TAW, Dec. 9 (Xinhua) -- Thailand Chinlone teams get close behind the host Myanmar despite the unfamiliar sport, Myanmar Traditional Chinlone, limiting them. Thailand's men and women teams earned two gold medals on the Same Stroke event in Dec. 5 when Myanmar took the day-off, getting in their pockets all the silvers in the events Myanmar took part.

Roundup: Myanmar president's Philippine visit promotes bilateral ties

Roundup: Myanmar president's Philippine visit promotes bilateral ties by Feng Yingqiu YANGON, Dec. 6 (Xinhua) -- Myanmar President U Thein Sein's three-day state visit to the Philippines, which concluded on Friday, has promoted bilateral relations and economic and trade cooperation between the two countries, observers here said. During his first ever visit to the Southeast Asian member nation since his assumption to office in March 2011, Thein Sein had bilateral talks with his Philippine counterpart Benigno Aquino.

Ten dead Myanmar migrants found off Thai coast

Thai authorities said Monday they had recovered the bodies of 10 dead migrant workers from Myanmar whose boat is believed to have sunk in a recent storm. Myanmar officials have confirmed that the victims -- nine men and one woman -- were citizens of their country, according to the governor of the southern Thai province of Ranong, Cherdsak Jampathes. "It is likely they were illegal immigrants who came for work. They normally travel together about 20-30 people in a small boat," he told AFP. "There was a storm and rain early this week."

5.7-magnitude quake hits Myanmar

A shallow 5.7-magnitude earthquake struck close to Myanmar's second-biggest city on Friday evening, seismologists said. The quake hit at 6:54 pm local time (1224 GMT) at a depth of 10 kilometres (six miles), the US Geological Survey said. It was 110 kilometres north of the city of Mandalay. The agency indicated the quake caused strong shaking and issued a yellow alert, suggesting a mid-level risk of fatalities. Earthquakes are relatively common in Myanmar.

Malaysia to repatriate Myanmar nationals after clashes

Malaysia said Thursday it would work with Myanmar to repatriate thousands of their nationals following clashes in the community that left at least four dead and led to a security sweep. The two Southeast Asian nations insisted that violence -- beginning late May at a wholesale market in Kuala Lumpur -- linked to strife between majority Buddhists and minority Muslims in Myanmar was under control. Malaysian authorities have suggested Buddhists came under attack from Muslim countrymen seeking vengeance over deadly sectarian strife back in Myanmar.
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