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Joint Statement between the Republic of the Union of Myanmar and the United States of America

At the invitation of President Barack Obama, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, State Counsellor of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar, is on an official visit to Washington, D.C. in September 2016. During the visit, State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and President Obama held a meeting on September 14 in the White House and adopted this joint statement.

Both leaders remarked on the tremendous change in Myanmar over the past five years, during which time Myanmar moved from a military government through a period of opening, held free and fair elections in November 2015, and inaugurated a new, democratically elected government in March 2016. State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi expressed her appreciation for the role played by the United States and other members of the international community in encouraging and supporting this transformation, and President Obama affirmed continued U.S. support for Myanmar's democratic transition. Both leaders noted that Myanmar's transition has allowed for a dramatic change in the bilateral relationship, creating opportunities to build a robust, multi-faceted partnership for the mutual benefit of both countries.
The State Counsellor reiterated to the President her commitment to furthering Myanmar's democratic transition by pursuing peace, national reconciliation, and inclusive growth. She expressed her belief that the 21st Century Panglong process, inaugurated on August, 31, 2016, would lead to a lasting peace with armed ethnic groups and help the people of Myanmar build an inclusive Union that embraced the country's rich diversity. She stressed her government’s commitment to the resolution of the complex political, economic, and humanitarian challenges in Rakhine State and the development of the state's economic potential. Noting that peace, national reconciliation, and inclusive economic growth were mutually reinforcing, the State Counsellor described the range of economic policies the Government of Myanmar was pursuing to develop its economy. She stressed that Myanmar welcomes international investment to help promote strong, inclusive, and long-term economic growth and asked that the United States lift remaining sanctions on Myanmar to encourage this investment and in recognition of the steps Myanmar has taken toward democratization.

The President told the State Counsellor that the primary focus of U.S. policy toward Myanmar was to help Myanmar succeed. He reiterated that the United States would continue its strong support, both diplomatically and through assistance programs, for the priorities expressed by the State Counsellor. He welcomed the Myanmar government's initiatives to address the longstanding concerns of all communities in Rakhine State, including the establishment of the Advisory Commission on Rakhine State chaired by Mr. Kofi Annan, former Secretary General of the United Nations. The President expressed his hope that all parties to civil conflict in Myanmar would seize the opportunity offered by the 21st Century Panglong process to seek peace and build the foundations for a democratic, federal Union through dialogue. The President affirmed the importance of the role of civil society in the pursuit of Myanmar’s national development goals and the promotion and protection of human rights and democratic governance. The President expressed his commitment to helping Myanmar achieve inclusive economic growth, both through continued assistance and by changes to U.S. policy designed to encourage responsible investment in Myanmar. Concurring with the State Counsellor on the importance of the rule of law, the President said the United States would continue to support Myanmar's efforts to develop domestic institutions to promote the rule of law and would work closely with Myanmar and other partners in ASEAN to address regional and transnational challenges including nonproliferation and countering the scourge of drugs, terrorism, and extremism.

The President and the State Counsellor committed to mark this new era in the bilateral relationship by announcing a U.S.-Myanmar Partnership. This partnership, anchored by annual dialogues led by the U.S. Department of State and Myanmar's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, will allow the two countries to broaden and deepen their cooperation across a range of sectors. To further this effort, the President and the State Counsellor committed to collaborate on the following steps:

• Recognizing the progress toward democratic transition that Myanmar has achieved, including through the election of a civilian-led government, and in an effort to support inclusive economic growth, the United States will terminate the National Emergency with respect to Myanmar and will revoke the Executive Order-based framework of the Burma sanctions program.
• The United States will restore Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) trade benefits to Myanmar in light of progress on a number of fronts, including strengthening protections for internationally recognized worker rights.
• The United States and Myanmar commit to continued cooperation in addressing remaining challenges, such as strengthening the rule of law, promoting respect for human rights, countering trafficking in persons, combatting corruption, and advancing anti-money laundering efforts and counter-narcotics activities.
• The United States and Myanmar recognize their shared interest in enhancing bilateral economic engagement and exchanging views on laws and practices that affect bilateral investment flows and foreign investment, including the elements of a high-standard Bilateral Investment Treaty.
• The United States and Myanmar recognized the important role of small and growing businesses in supporting inclusive economic growth. The United States intends to sign a loan guarantee with five local microfinance institutions to support over $10 million in loans to small businesses in Myanmar, which will increase access to food and support employment opportunities for communities in Myanmar.
• The United States and Myanmar are committed to advancing global health security. In 2017, Myanmar will complete and publish a Joint External Evaluation (JEE) of national capacity to prevent, detect, and respond to infectious disease threats. The United States completed and published a JEE in 2016.
• The United States and Myanmar will expand people-to-people ties including by augmenting English-language instruction with additional training for 1500 English teachers, by expanding U.S. educational advising across Myanmar by 50 percent for students interested in studying in the United States, and by launching a new exchange program for Myanmar leaders that will provide expertise in democratic governance.
• The United States and Myanmar look forward to the arrival of the first group of Peace Corps volunteers, who will train English teachers as well as teach students in middle and high schools.

Press Release No. 10 / 2016

EMBASSY OF THE REPUBLIC OF THE UNION OF MYANMAR

THIELALLEE 19
14195 BERLIN
FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF GERMANY

Press Release No. 10 / 2016

1. On her way to attend the 71stUnited Nations General Assembly in New York, State Counsellor and Union Minister for Foreign Affairs Daw Aung San Suu Kyi stopped by London, the United Kingdom, as the first leg of her journey from 11 September 2016 to 13 September 2016. The State Counsellor was accompanied by Minister of State for Foreign Affairs U Kyaw Tin and Officials from Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

2. The State Counsellor gave the policy guidelines to the twelve Myanmar Ambassadors assigned in countries in Europe, the Middle East and Africa and briefed them on the developments in Myanmar such as the 21st Century Panglong Conference and the Peace Dialogue, Formation of the Rakhine Commission and the Myitsone Dam Project on 12th September 2016 at the Myanmar Embassy in London. During the meeting, the State Counsellor clarified priorities in Myanmar as well as the country’s foreign policy stands, saying that Myanmar maintains friendly relations with all countries in the world by practicing the non-aligned policy. She instructed the ambassadors to protect the interests of Myanmar nationals. She also clarified undertakings for development of the political, economic and social sectors of the country. In turn, the ambassadors reported on their efforts in promoting bilateral relations and mutual cooperation in their respective countries.

3. On the next day, British Prime Minister Mrs. Theresa May welcomed the State Counsellor to No. 10, Downing Street. The Prime Minister expressed her delight for Myanmar’s successful transition to democracy, promising that the new government of Britain would promote the bilateral relations and cooperation and would assist in the development of Myanmar. The State Counsellor also expressed her thanks to the British Prime Minister for Britain’s support to Myanmar’s transition to democracy. She also requested the Britishgovernment to help sectors in agriculture, forestry, education, health, human resource development. The Prime Minister invited the State Counsellor to pay an official goodwill visit to Britain next year and the State Counsellor also invited Mrs. Theresa May to pay a visit to Myanmar.

4. As the second lag of her trip, the State Counsellor arrived in Washington DC on 14 September 2016. During the meeting with President Barack Obama, she was informed that the United Statesis prepared to lift sanctions on Myanmar soon. President Obama expressed that the US moves would give incentives to business to invest in the Asian country. The Joint Statement between the Republic of the Union of Myanmar and the United States was issued which stated that the United States will terminate the National Emergency with respect to Myanmar and will revoke the Executive Order-based framework of the Burma sanctions program.The United States will restore Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) trade benefits to Myanmar in light of progress on a number of fronts, including strengthening protection for internationally recognized worker rights.This will take effect on 13 November and will help the Myanmar government create jobs and reduce poverty.

5. The Joint Statement also stated that the United States and Myanmar affirmed their commitments to continued cooperation in addressing remaining challenges, such as strengthening the rule of law, promoting respect for human rights, countering trafficking in persons, combatting corruption, and advancing anti-money laundering efforts and counter-narcotics activitiesin enhancing bilateral economic engagement and exchanging views on laws and practices that affect bilateral investment flows and foreign investment, including the elements of a high-standard Bilateral Investment Treaty.The United States intends to sign a loan guarantee with five local microfinance institutions to support over $10 million in loans to small businesses in Myanmar, which will increase access to food and support employment opportunities for communities in Myanmar.The United States and Myanmar will expand people-to-people ties including by augmenting medium of English-language instruction with additional training for 1500 English teachers, by expanding U.S. educational advising across Myanmar by 50 percent for students interested in studying in the United States, and by launching a new exchange program for Myanmar leaders that will provide expertise in democratic governance.The United States and Myanmar look forward to the arrival of the first group of Peace Corps volunteers, who will train English teachers as well as teach students in middle and high schools.

Embassy of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar

Berlin, Germany
16 September 2016

Myanmar-India Joint Statement during the visit of the President of Myanmar to India (29 August 2016)

August 29, 2016

1. At the invitation of H.E. Shri Pranab Mukherjee, President of the Republic of India, H.E.U Htin Kyaw, President of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar, paid a State visit to India from 27-30 August, 2016. He was accompanied by his wife Daw Su Su Lwin. Apart from his official engagements in New Delhi, President U Htin Kyaw visited places of historical and cultural importance, including Bodhgaya and Agra.

2. President U Htin Kyaw was accompanied by a high level delegation including the Union Minister for Religious Affairs and Culture, the Union Minister for Transportation and Communication, the Union Minister for Labour, Immigration and Manpower, the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, and other senior officials. He was accorded a ceremonial reception at Rashtrapati Bhavan on August 29, 2016. The President of India hosted a banquet in his honour.

3. President U Htin Kyaw paid tribute and respect to the memory of Mahatma Gandhi at Rajghat.

4. H.E. Smt Sushma Swaraj, External Affairs Minister of India, called on President U Htin Kyaw in New Delhi.

5. The Indian leadership congratulated the President of Myanmar on the victory of the National League for Democracy after general elections in Myanmar in November 2015. They expressed support to the new Government in all its endeavours for the well-being of the people of Myanmar, including in development of democratic institutions. They also offered to share India's own experiences in evolving parliamentary rules, procedures and practices as well as in managing Union-State/Region relations, allocation of powers and resources between the Union and States etc.

6. President U Htin Kyaw held wide-ranging discussions with H.E. Shri Pranab Mukherjee, President of India and H.E. Shri Narendra Modi, Prime Minister of India, on bilateral, regional and international issues of mutual interest. While reviewing bilateral issues, both sides agreed that greater bilateral cooperation between India and Myanmar is required in order to promote inclusive growth and development and to contribute to peace, prosperity and stability in both countries and in the region as a whole. They expressed support for the continuation and reinvigoration of dialogue within the framework of existing bilateral institutional mechanisms, namely Joint Consultative Commission, Foreign Office Consultations, Joint Trade Committee, National Level Meeting, Sectoral Level Meeting, Regional Border Committee, Border Liaison Meetings, Heads of Survey Department Meeting etc.

7. The Indian leadership also expressed support to the national reconciliation and peace process of the Government of Myanmar under the "21st Century Panglong Conference”.

8. Both sides reaffirmed their commitment to further strengthen bilateral security and defence cooperation, which is crucial for maintaining peace and stability along the long India-Myanmar border. They reaffirmed their shared commitment to fight the scourge of terrorism and insurgent activity in all its forms and manifestations. Both sides reiterated their commitment to respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the other and to continue practising the policy of not allowing any insurgent groups to use their soil for hostile activities against the other side. They emphasized the need for enhanced cooperation between security forces and border guarding agencies for securing peace, security and stability in the border areas, which is crucial for overall development.

9. The two sides alluded to the importance of sound border management as an intrinsic part of maintaining border security, peace and stability along the entire length of their common border.

10. Referring to the ongoing discussions between the two sides on maritime security, both sides agreed that Maritime Security Cooperation in the Bay of Bengal is vital for both countries.

11. The two sides reviewed ongoing development cooperation initiatives being undertaken with technical and financial assistance from the Government of India, including in the areas of connectivity and capacity building, health and education infrastructure, agriculture, information technology, industrial training, and various training programmes.

12. The two sides expressed satisfaction at the progress made in the implementation of Kaladan Multi Modal Transit Transport Project. The two sides agreed that the completed facilities at Sittwe and Paletwa should be operationalised by December 2016 and the modalities of their operation and maintenance be finalized by the two sides at the earliest. The two sides expressed satisfaction at the signing of two MoUs pertaining to the implementation of India-Myanmar-Thailand Trilateral Highway project.

13. Identifying the need for special focus on the development and prosperity of the people in bordering areas, both sides agreed to enhance their cooperation to bring about overall socio-economic development in the border areas by undertaking both infrastructure development and micro-economic projects, including the upgradation of roads and construction of schools, health centres, bridges, agriculture and related training activities in accordance with the MoU on India-Myanmar Border Area Cooperation.

14. The two leaders noted with appreciation the substantial progress made in upgrading the Yangon Children’s Hospital and the Sittwe General Hospital with technical and financial assistance from India. The Myanmar side thanked India for this important partnership initiative with state-of-the-art medical equipment. The two sides expressed satisfaction at the functioning of the Myanmar Institute of Information Technology (MIIT) as well as on the establishment of the Rice Bio-Park at Yezin University in Nay Pyi Taw. They reviewed progress in establishing the Advanced Centre for Agricultural Research and Education (ACARE) in Nay Pyi Taw. These institutes will emerge as centres of excellence that will be able to address the capacity building needs of Myanmar's IT and agricultural sector respectively. Both sides expressed satisfaction at the successful upgradation of the India-Myanmar Centre for the Enhancement of IT Skills (IMCEITS) in Yangon, which has emerged as a premier ICT training centre in Myanmar, Language Laboratories at Yangon and Nay Pyi Taw, e-Resource Centre at Nay Pyi Taw as well as the computerisation of the Central Land Records Development Training Centre (CLRDTC) at Taik Kyi in Yangon region. Indian side offered assistance for undertaking small development projects in areas and sectors considered priority by Government of Myanmar. Indian side also offered assistance to Myanmar side to enhance agricultural productivity by undertaking initiatives such as programme on germplasm enhancement, development of seed models, training private seed entrepreneurs in Myanmar, training and demonstration of improvised agro-techniques and other capacity building projects. The two sides agreed to exchange information on skill development initiative that could be undertaken to provide useful employment opportunities while the needs of industry of both countries.

15. The two sides agreed to promote trade and expand cooperation especially in agriculture, banking, power and energy sectors. Both sides expressed satisfaction that the trade between the two countries has shown resilience to the global trends.They agreed that both Governments would work to identify and remove various impediments to bilateral trade. In this context, both sides appreciated the useful deliberations at the India-Myanmar Business Conclave held in Yangon in May 2016 which was attended by a high-level business delegation led by Indian Minister of Commerce Smt Nirmala Sitharaman.Indian side conveyed that leading Indian companies are prepared to invest in Myanmar’s hospitality and automobile sector, and requested that this may be facilitated.

16. Indian leadership thanked Myanmar for accepting its request and giving a licence to the State Bank of India to open a bank branch in Myanmar, and sought support while it sets up its office in Myanmar. Both sides expressed the confidence that the commencement of direct banking operations would help greatly to expand bilateral trade and commerce

17. The two leaders also expressed hope that the modalities of operation of border haats may be finalised soon so that trade can also start taking place through border haats.

18. Both sides agreed that an arrangement for supply of pulses from Myanmar to India would be in the mutual interest of Myanmar farmers and Indian consumers. They encouraged Indian companies to cooperate with Myanmar farmers in order to improve the quality of pulses production and thus ensure better marketability of the produce in India.

19. The President of Myanmar thanked India for the power supply that commenced from India across the Moreh-Tamu border on April 8, 2016. Both sides agreed that this is a small but critical step towards further integrating our countries and economies for the mutual benefit of the two peoples. Both sides will consider infrastructure strengthening of the transmission network to increase supply in future.

20. In order to provide a framework for bilateral cooperation in this key sector, the Indian and Myanmar leaders resolved that the proposed MoU between India and Myanmar on Cooperation in the field of Power should be negotiated at the earliest.

21. The Indian side invited Myanmar to participate in the International Solar Alliance Initiative, which is intended to allow solar resource rich countries to address their special needs and collaborate to reduce costs and improve generation capacity.

22. The two sides recognised the presence of Indian companies in the oil exploration and hydrocarbon pipeline sectors and agreed to further expand this collaboration. Myanmar side agreed to invite Indian companies to participate in competitive tender for petrochemical and petroleum products marketing infrastructure and setting up LPG terminals.

23. Reviewing ongoing bilateral cultural exchanges and cooperation, both agreed to further promote cultural and academic exchanges. They expressed satisfaction at the ongoing pace of work on the project for conservation and restoration of the Ananda Temple in Bagan, Myanmar, by the Archaeological Survey of India. The Indian side confirmed that a project to preserve and conserve stone inscriptions and temples of King Mindon and King Bagyidaw of Myanmar in Bodh Gaya would be undertaken by the Archaeological Survey of India with financial support from Government of India. The two sides also agreed on joint technical support for preservation and conservation of the two stone inscriptions. The two sides noted with satisfaction that the ‘Festival of India’ in Myanmar was held with popular support and participation.

24. The two sides agreed to encourage people-to people contact and facilitate movement of people across land borders of the two countries. The two sides also discussed on setting up immigration facilities at the Tamu-Moreh and Rhi-Zowkhathar border crossing points at an early date.

25. The two sides reaffirmed their commitment to work closely together in all international multilateral organizations and, in this context, agreed to make efforts to coordinate national positions on important issues that figure high on the international fora. Recognising that terrorism is one of the most serious threats to the international peace and security, and underscoring that there can be no justification whatsoever for acts of terrorism, the two sides called for further strengthening of the international legal regime to combat terrorism, and in this context, called for early finalisation of the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism presently being negotiated in the United Nations. Both sides recognised that early reform of the UN Security Council is an essential element in the overall effort to reform the United Nations to make it more representative, effective and better adapted to the needs of the 21st Century. Myanmar side reiterated its support for India’s efforts to become a permanent member in an expanded and reformed UN Security Council.

26. India expressed its support for the progress made by Myanmar in its ongoing reform process under difficult circumstances including its efforts towards achieving an inclusive and broad based national reconciliation. In this context, both sides agreed that the delegations of India and Myanmar will continue to work together closely during deliberations in all relevant UN fora.

27. During the visit, the following documents were signed:

i) MoU on Cooperation in the field of Traditional Systems of Medicine
ii) The MoU on Cooperation in the Field of Renewable Energy.
iii) The MoU on Cooperation in the Construction/Upgradation of the Bridges and Approach Road in Tamu-Kyigone-Kalewa section of the Trilateral Highway in Myanmar.
iv) The MoU on Cooperation in the Construction/Upgradation of Kalewa-Yagyi road section of the Trilateral Highway in Myanmar, and

28. Both sides welcomed the various steps taken to strengthen regional cooperation under BIMSTEC. The Myanmar side informed the Indian side that State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi will participate in the forthcoming Outreach Summit between BRICS and BIMSTEC partners to be held in India on 16 October 2016. The Indian side welcomed this.

29. The President of Myanmar thanked the President of India for the warm and gracious hospitality extended to him and to the members of his delegation during their stay in India.

30. The President of Myanmar extended an invitation to the President of India and the Prime Minister of India to visit Myanmar at mutually convenient dates. The invitations were accepted, and it was agreed that dates for these visits would be decided by mutual consultations through diplomatic channels.

Embassy of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar, Berlin

Embassy of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar
Thielallee 19, 14195, Berlin
Germany.
Ph : (+49) 30 206 1570, Fax : (+49) 30 206 15720
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www.meberlin.com