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Pyidaungsu Hluttaw Votes against Constitutional Amendments

Only one out of six proposed constitutional amendments was voted “Yes” by the Parliament on 25th June. The Section (d) was ameneded where the expression “military” was changed to “defence” in the clause indicating that a president must be accustomed with the administrative, economic, political and military affairs of the Union of Myanmar. One of the five rejected amendments include the Section 436 (a) and (b) and the bill proposed to lower the number of required minimum votes to amend the constitution from 75 to 70 percent in order to limit the legislation power of the military which has taken a quarter of the parliament. The rest proposed amendments were the Section 60 (c) which states that the President shall be selected from the selected MPs and the Section 59 (f) which expressed that a president or a vice president shall not have a spouse, a legitimate child or the child’s spouse who holds a foreign citizenship. Both of the bills were rejected by the parliament.

Code of Conduct for General Elections Signed

A number of 67 representatives out of 80 registered political parties signed a code of conduct on 26th June in Yangon and the signing event was witnessed by Union Election Commission (UEC) Chairman U Tin Aye, a number of foreign diplomats and civil society organizations. The signing of the code of conduct for political parties and candidates intended to hold the election process successfully and encourage open, free and fair competition, says a media release, also independent candidates and additional parties are expected to sign the code of conduct in coming weeks. A committee including the Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) and National League for Democracy (NLD) participated in drafting the code which was later reviewed by UEC and accepted by all parties in last May. The election date and constituencies are to be announced in coming month, the sources say.

Myanmar Hosted the 6th ACMECS Summit

The 6th Ayeyawady – Chao Phraya – Mekong Economic Cooperation Strategy (ACMECS) Summit was held in Nay Pyi Taw on 23rd June in the presence of the leaders from Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar,

Thailand and Vietnam and agreed to promote the region’s agriculture, energy, environment and the human resource development and take up the 2016-2018 ACMECS Action Plan. The Nay Pyi Taw Declaration of the 6th ACMECS Summit revealed that the leaders agreed to develop the tourism, transportation and trading in economic corridors among the ACMECS countries. During his keynote, President U Thein Sein indicated the founding of Mekong University in Kengtung of Shan State in Myanmar. ASEAN Secretary General Mr. Le Luong Minh was also present at the Summit and the ACMECS leaders had a business dialogue with the business leaders during the Summit, say the sources. The 7th ACMECS Summit is to be held in Vietnam next year.

Minimum Wage yet to be Agreed

The workshop for Myanmar’s minimum wage was held at UMFCCI on 22nd and 23rd of June and as both the employers and workers’ sides proposed the bill respectively, the National Committee opt 3,600 kyats per day as the minimum wage. Workers demanded to be paid 4,000 kyats per day as the basic wage while the garment factories representatives from the employers’ side insisted on 2,500 kyats. According to the Union Minister U Aye Myint of Labor, Employment and Social Security, the National Committee will review on the suggested wages from all sides in the coming months to finalise the bill for parliament. Both workers and employers can make suggestions and arguments within 60 days of announcement and after the confirmation by the committee, it will be submitted to the Union Government, said the Minister.