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PM Modi Met Myanmar President in Kathmandu

Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi held a meeting with the President of Myanmar, Win Myint in Kathmandu on August 31. Both the leaders are in Kathmandu to attend the fourth BIMSTEC Summit which started on August 30.

The Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) is the regional group of seven countries which lies near the Bay of Bengal that includes Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Thailand. The grouping accounts for 22 percent of the global population, and has a combined gross domestic product of $2.8 trillion.

Prime Minister Modi discussed ways to strengthen bilateral cooperation with Myanmar. Prime Minister said,” Our discussions were centred around enhancing cooperation in trade, energy and several other sectors.” The two leaders had productive discussions on accelerating cooperation between India and Myanmar, according to the Prime Minister’s Office.

Sri Lanka and Myanmar to Strengthen Economic and Trade Relations

Presidents of Sri Lanka and Myanmar agreed to further strengthen the economic and trade relations between the two countries with a new approach which includes initiating the Sri Lanka – Myanmar Joint Trade Agreement.

This agreement was made when President Maithripala Sirisena who is in Nepal to attend the fourth summit of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) met with Myanmar President Win Myint in Kathmandu on August 30.

Sri Lanka and Myanmar entered into an agreement to ease trade activities between the two countries in 1999. President Sirisena said there were many similarities between Sri Lanka and Myanmar with both countries being nourished with Theravada Buddhism and their economies based on agriculture. He pledged to provide assistance to Myanmar in international fora.

Meanwhile, Myanmar President said he expects to visit Sri Lanka as soon as possible. He assured that Myanmar would always be ready to assist Sri Lanka when needed.

Yangon Region Citizen’s Budget Published

Yangon region government launched its first Citizen’s Budget on August 24, 2018 at Parkroyal Hotel Yangon with the support of The Asia Foundation and Renaissance Institute.

At the launching event, Phyo Min Thein, Yangon Chief Minister and Myint Thaung, Minister of Planning and Finance, gave the remark on the Citizen’s Budget. Khin Win Yee, the Director of Yangon Region Budget Department gave presentations of Citizen’s Budget.

The brief version of the budget includes facts and data on Yangon government’s spending in 2017 – 2018 and during the six-month interim period between April and September before the new fiscal year. “The purpose of the Citizen’s Budget is to give the public more information and a better understanding of the regional government drafts the budget and how it plans to spend public finds,” said Phyo Min Thein, Yangon chief minister. According to Citizen’s Budget, the budget was estimated to include 191.4 billion Kyats in revenues and around 202.2 billion Kyats in planned spending, resulting in budget deficit for Yangon of more than 10 billion Kyats during the six-month interim period. Citizen’s Budgets have been published in Bago region, Kayin State, Tanintharyi region and Kayah State, so far.