President Barack Obama eased investment curbs on Myanmar and named the first US ambassador to the country in more than 20 years, hoping to reward a “nascent” political reform drive.
But Obama, seeking maximum leverage on Myanmar’s nominally civilian government and to preserve his options in case of “backsliding,” maintained wider US sanctions on Myanmar and figures linked to the former junta.
Obama’s move followed calls from business and political figures in the United States, Europe and Asia to lift sanctions, and warnings by democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi against excessive optimism over a political opening.
The decision could usher in the first major trade and investment between the United States and Myanmar for years, and help pry open the country’s backward economy, that has been left behind by speeding Southeast Asian development.
The US government will advise companies on where and whether to invest in Myanmar and would maintain restrictions on investment with the military, which has deep commercial interests in the country’s economy.
Obama also nominated Derek Mitchell, who has been serving as the State Department’s special representative to Myanmar, as US ambassador, pending confirmation by the US Senate.
Washington withdrew its ambassador to Myanmar, also known as Burma, after a crackdown on a democracy uprising in 1988. Then Suu Kyi’s democracy movement won elections in 1990, but was barred from power.
Remember, Jim Rogers finds Myanmar as an investment opportunity, “Wildy Exciting“!!