Peace and economy co-related: Peace Commission chair

To attract more local and foreign investments in Myanmar, peace and political stability are critical, said Peace Commission chair Dr Tin Myo Win.

By Su Phyo Win   |   Monday, 10 April 2017

“It is fundamental. Business is essential for peace and peace is also critical in encouraging business growth. They are co-related.

“We also need to think about why the peace process is taking a long time and what inequalities we are dealing with,” he said at the Promoting Business for Peace event held at Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (UMFCCI) in Yangon on April 4.

Dr Tin Myo Win’s commission has been leading talks on politics, security, social, land and natural resources and business growth for Myanmar since the Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement was signed between the government and eight armed groups in the country.

Citing what State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi had said about business being part of the peace process, he said that the country has been experiencing stronger economic growth since the past year.

He said when a country’s economic was strong and made lives better for its citizens, some conflicts and problems would be solved naturally.

“Many developing nations have internal conflicts when their economies fail,” he said.

Myanmar Information Technology chief executive officer U Tun Thura Thet said businesses could do their bid to support peace by respecting human rights, the law and the environment.

The government, he said, was not pushing for businesses to take part in peace talks nor asking them to invest in conflict areas.

“If businesses follow the 10-point guidelines by the United Nations Global Compact Network to respect human rights, protect the environment and fight corruption, they are already helping the peace process,” he said.

U Tun Thura Thet also explained that it was normal for economic growth to be slow in a transitional period when the government worked on reforms.

He said the reason for the slow economy was not because the government was prioritising peace.

“It is normal for economic growth to be slow at times like this, not because the government is focusing on peace.

“The government is looking into some reforms that have side-effects on some sectors like construction.

“But the main issue should not be about how badly the economy is doing in the first year under the new government. It should be how much the economy will grow in the next five or 10 years,” he said.