Since the election of President Thein Sein last year, Myanmar has gradually introduced political and economic reforms. Internet and media controls have been relaxed, Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi was released from house arrest and her political party was allowed to contest and win seats in parliament.
In response to these positive developments, the U.S. has suspended certain financial sanctions against Myanmar in order to encourage further political and economic reforms, according to a recent article in the Wall Street Journal. The suspensions will allow the first major U.S. corporate investments in the country in decades. The U.S. has also appointed its first ambassador to Myanmar in 22 years.
The U.S. has stressed that the financial sanctions have not been formally lifted, however, and other sanctions remain in place, including an arms embargo and the maintenance by the U.S. Treasury Department of a list of companies and individuals suspected of human rights abuses.
We will continue to monitor and report on developments in Myanmar's gradual reintegration into the world economy here.