FROM THE DVB NEWSROOM
Foreign investment in Burma declines substantially under the junta
Foreign investment in Burma from April 1 to August 31 is reportedly $1.2 billion USD, according to the junta-controlled Directorate of Investment and Companies Administration (DICA). During this fiscal year, Singapore’s investments were the largest at over US$1 billion, followed by Hong Kong and China. Japan, Thailand, South Korea, Taiwan and India maintained smaller investments in Burma. The energy sector had the most investment at over $700 million USD, followed by the services sector at $400 million USD. The manufacturing sector $120 million USD, the real estate industry $29 million USD, the fishing industry $1.5 million USD, and the agricultural sector $1 million USD – significantly less than previous years. Foreign investment in Burma has significantly declined following the 2021 military coup due to political instability and international sanctions. Many international companies have exited the country.
COVID cases climb amidst medicine shortages and rising prices
COVID-19 cases have been steadily rising in Burma in the past several weeks, according to Radio Free Asia. It comes as the country deals with a lack of medical workers and medicine. The price of medicine has surged across Burma amidst inflation. The junta reported 189 daily infections on Sept. 11, out of 9,378 laboratory tests – yielding a positivity rate of 2.01 percent. “Although people have been vaccinated, they are infected. Many people have died from the Coronavirus, so we have to learn a lesson from what happened in the third wave and stay safe,” a woman in Yangon told RFA. Local aid groups have urged the public to follow COVID-19 precautions. The junta claims that 19,442 people have died due the COVID-19 pandemic in Burma since 2020. Many health experts believe the death toll to be significantly higher.
News by Region
AYEYARWADDY—Families of political prisoners held at Pathein Prison have been contacted by a junta committee claiming to be responsible for reducing sentences for prisoners. The relatives were asked for between K5 million and K30 million to re-evaluate the cases of their loved ones, a family member told DVB. “They claimed to be a team responsible for re-examining cases. They re-examine the cases and report them to Naypyidaw,” he said. The junta’s Sa Ya Pa, a Burmese acronym for an intelligence agency including police, judges, and administrative officials. The families claimed that the committee asked for K5 million to K30 million to drop or reduce charges. There have been more than 300 male and 50 female political prisoners jailed at Pathein Prison since the coup.
KARENNI—Two members of the Karenni Nationalities Defense Force (KNDF) and 20 Burma Army personnel were reportedly killed in Moebye, on Sept. 11, according to a press release from the KNDF. It claimed to have seized a large haul of weapons and ammunition from the Burma Army. Two junta airstrikes on Moebye damaged houses. Residents have been urged not to leave their homes since Sept. 8. According to a Progressive Karenni People’s Force (PKPF) statement released on Sept. 12, at least 40 homes, located in three wards of Moebye, were damaged due to Burma Army shelling and airstrikes on Sep. 11. At least 100 homes have been damaged since Sep. 8, according to reports.
KACHIN—Three policemen were attacked while shopping in Hpakant’s Maweng Ward on Sep. 10, according to residents. A group of unidentified gunmen are said to have conducted the attack in a car. “One was killed and the two others were seriously injured,” a local told DVB. Deputy Police Chief Koko Lwin from the 30th Police Battalion in Satemu Village was killed in August.
SAGAING—Two police officers were killed by unidentified gunmen on the Monywa-Amyint highway road Sept. 12. The policemen are said to be from Monywa township’s Nyaungphyupin police station. “Two policemen were lying in a pool of blood and they [the resistance group] took two guns from the officers,” an eyewitness told DVB. Another officer from the same police force was killed Aug. 21.
TANINTHARYI—Four local defense forces issued a joint statement on Sept. 11, stating that they were not involved in seven shootings that took place in Yephyu Township over the last month. The four groups operating in Yephyu Township – Yephyu Township People’s Defense Force (YPPDF), Dawei Guerrilla Revolutionary Force (DGRF), Launglon People’s Defense Force (LLPDF) and T-PDF – stated that five people have been killed by a pro-junta militia, known as Pyusawhti.