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Myanmar Foreign Policy under New Government
- After opening up in 2011 with new civilian government, international community has been busy eying on Myanmar's transition, how she will continue her democratization process and in which way she will diversify her foreign relations. It cannot be denied that Myanmar is managing her foreign relations that will advantage her national interest. Being isolated for many decades, Myanmar realized that it is time to change to reintegrate into international community for the development of the country. With this aim in their mind, Myanmar opened her new chapter in her relations by transforming the country into democratic system with seven-step of road map. Since then international media frequently termed Myanmar democratic transition as "Myanmar spring" due to its smooth democratization process. Myanmar's political transition towards a democratic system has created both opportunities and challenges in engaging her foreign relations because of a need to keep balance among China, US, Japan and EU. As Myanmar assumes ASEAN chairmanship in 2014, the focus on the country's foreign policy orientation will come under further scrutiny. As a chair of ASEAN, Myanmar has an opportunity to demonstrate its “independent” foreign policy and provide a path for the country's future policy direction. Changing Myanmar to increase strategic options and new investments for economic development, Myanmar will continue to strengthen ties with China, US, Japan and other western powers. Moreover, the existing economic linkages and geographical proximity to China and ASEAN will make Myanmar play a balancing act with all the major players, a pre-requisite for prosperity, security and stability of the region. In this context, this paper will try to answer the question of how Myanmar will stand and play her foreign policy under new government.
Chaw Chaw Sein
- Book chapter
- Myanmar: Reintegrating into the International Community
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