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Burma/Myanmar

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On April 9, 2021, the US Commerce Department’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) strengthened restrictions targeting Burma by adding Burma to the list of countries subject to the Export Administration Regulations’ (EAR’s) military-intelligence end-use and end-user controls and controls on certain support activities by US persons (“Interim Final Rule“). These controls were first issued on January 15, 2021 (“January Rule“), and became effective March 16, 2021.  Our blog posts on other recent sanctions targeting Burma…

On 1 April 2021, the UK government announced additional measures targeting the Myanmar regime’s economic interests. Further to the 25 March 2021 announcement targeting Myanmar Economic Holdings Ltd (MEHL), the UK has added Myanmar Economic Corporation (MEC) to its Global Human Rights sanctions regime. The UK cited credible evidence that MEC had contributed funds to the Myanmar military who have allegedly committed widespread human rights violations in Myanmar. The sanctions impose an asset freeze against MEC and its subsidiaries as…

On March 31, 2021, the Swiss government amended the list of individuals in Annex 1 to the Ordinance on Measures against Myanmar/Burma. Eleven individuals responsible for the military coup staged in Myanmar on February 1, 2021, and the subsequent military and police repression against peaceful demonstrators, have been newly included. Ten of the eleven individuals targeted belong to the highest ranks of the Myanmar Armed Forces (Tatmadaw), including the Tatmadaw’s Commander-in-Chief, Min Aung Hlaing, and Deputy-Commander-in-Chief,…

The US Government has imposed a series of sanctions against Myanmar Economic Corporation Limited (MEC) and Myanma Economic Holdings Public Company Limited (a.k.a. Myanmar Economic Holding Limited) (MEHL), two military-affiliated conglomerates, in response to the February military coup in Burma (Myanmar). The combined restrictions are likely to have a significant impact on business activities in Burma as these conglomerates have substantial interests and joint ventures in several sectors of the Burmese economy, including trading, natural…

Further to our previous blog post, the EU has responded to the recent military coup in Myanmar with restrictive measures on eleven individuals. This adds to pre-existing restrictive measures that have been in place since April 2018, as detailed in our previous blog post. These measures included an embargo on arms and equipment that can be used for internal repression, an export ban of dual use goods for use by the military and border guard police, and export restrictions…

On February 10, 2021, President Biden issued Executive Order 14014 “Blocking Property with Respect to the Situation in Burma” (EO 14014), which provides for the imposition of sanctions on certain Burmese parties in response to the Burmese military’s coup against the democratically elected civilian government in Burma. In parallel with the issuance of EO 14014, the US Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) designated thirteen parties on February 10, 2021 and two parties on February 22, 2021 connected…

Following the designations announced 18 February (see our recent post), the UK has designated 5 further individuals under the Myanmar/Burma sanctions regime: Tin Aung SanMaung Maung KyawAung Lin DweMoe Myint TunYe Win Oo The UK has also updated the listing details for Min Aung Hlaing (previously designated, and remaining subject to asset freeze measures). In addition, the existing designation for Bi Sidi Souleman under the UK’s Central African Republic sanctions regime has also been amended.

On May 12, 2020, the Philippines component of the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) and Investment Agreement (IA) between Hong Kong, China and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) entered into force. The FTA and IA entered into force between Hong Kong and Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam in 2019. According to the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC), under the FTA, the Philippines will progressively eliminate and reduce customs duties on goods…

On September 1, 2018, the Canada Gazette published a notice from Global Affairs Canada stating that the Government of Canada is committed to fostering and strengthening Canada’s economic ties with its Asia-Pacific partners, including the 10 member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) [Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam] and is seeking the views of interested Canadian stakeholders on the scope of potential negotiations toward a possible free trade agreement (FTA) with ASEAN. Expanding and diversifying Canada’s trade with large, emerging markets such as ASEAN is a priority for the Government of Canada and contributes to Canada’s trade diversification strategy. The Government of Canada’s approach is one that puts the interests of Canadians and opportunities for the middle class, women, youth and Indigenous people front and centre.

As the trade conflict between the United States and China continues, three free trade agreements are pressing ahead, including– the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), soon to enter into force, the Japan-EU Economic Partnership Agreement (JEEPA), recently signed and which represents 30% of global economic output, and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), an agreement that includes both India and China and comprises the largest trading block in the region.