A party formed from the ashes of one of Burma’s leading communist parties and looking to contest elections this year has said that the country can only flourish under a market economy.
The New Era People’s Party (NEPP), one of three parties born out of the Troksyite Red Flag communist party, a branch of the Burma Communist Party (BCP), has said it will register for the elections.
NEPP general secretary, Htun Aung Kyaw, told DVB that he was a “former personal assistance” of deceased Red Flag leader, Thakin Soe, who became one of Burma’s most influential communist politicians.
Joining the party will be the Alliance Federation of National Politics, which has already registered, and the United Democrat Party. Both are also formed of former Red Flag members and all have said that they “accept the 2008 constitution for now and believe that the elections will be free and fair and bring about a change”.
But in a surprising break with the past, the general secretary of the NEPP, Htun Aung Kyaw, said that the party “will try capitalism for the full development of the nation’s market economy”.
“Peasants, labourers and farmers can only benefit under industrial capitalism. We will strive for maximum development of the industrial capitalism, market economy and democracy,” he said.
He added that the party would install a brand of capitalism which advocates “land ownerships for nationals and freedom for trade and the elections”.
At least five political parties have now registered for controversial elections this year, while Burma’s main opposition National League for Democracy (NLD) party has said it will not participate.
Burma already looks set to break with its former ultra-nationalist economic policies, having sold off swathes of state-owned assets to private businesses, most however with close ties to the ruling junta.
Furthermore, foreign companies, mainly Chinese, Korean and Indian, have become increasingly involved in lucrative energy projects in Burma which look set to prop up the ruling regime, which is currently governing over a crumbling economy.