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The Mon State Hluttaw and CESD collaborated on, and conducted, a regional development workshop in the Mon Hluttaw Meeting Hall between 9th August and 10th August, 2016. The Mon Hluttaw Chief Minister, Deputy Chief Minister, Minister of Electricity, Members of Parliament, officials and CESD researchers attended the workshop.
Data analysis from CESD’s Mon State Rural Household Survey (2015) is presented in a research report (July 2016) that identifies options for more balanced growth in Mon State, “leading to a vibrant economy in which returning migrants can invest and find employment.” The research report, prepared by CESD, in partnership with the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) and Michigan State University (MSU), provides a set of initial recommendations for the establishment of a rural development strategy for Mon State. The recommendations are in two broad areas: (1) stimulating growth in agriculture and sustainable management of natural resources, and (2) providing public infrastructure and services that strengthen the enabling environment.
CESD’s Myanmar Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (MEITI) team provided expertise and support to recent training in Nay Pyi Taw on resource governance and contract negotiation in the extractive industries. Myanmar has extensive natural resources. How these natural resources are managed, and how contracts are negotiated, will determine whether they deliver benefits and inclusive development to Myanmar.
CESD’s demographic research surveys in Mon State in 2015 revealed some startling figures on migration – nearly half of all households surveyed had sent at least one person to live and work in Thailand. Dr Zaw Oo, CESD Executive Director, discusses the research results, and the impact of these, in an article in the Nikkei Asian Review on 23 June 2016. To manage this trend, Dr Zaw Oo proposes a long-term compact between Thailand and Myanmar, based on the concept of “circular migration.” Such a compact could help Myanmar migrants in Thailand integrate better, providing better and higher-skilled manpower, while also assisting migrants when they return to Myanmar.
CESD, in partnership with IDRC have produced a short documentary on the recent process to establish a minimum wage in Myanmar.
Dr Zaw Oo, CESD Executive Director, will share his views and knowledge on Myanmar’s economic development at the Myanmar Forum 2016, to be held in Singapore on 20 May 2016.
Analysis of data from CESD’s Mon State Rural Household Survey (2015) forms the basis for recommendations on possible policy options – for the Union and Mon State governments – to deliver “balanced growth and resilient livelihoods” in Mon State. A presentation to key stakeholders in Mawlamyine, Mon State, in May 2016, provides an overview of CESD’s survey data, key findings and policy recommendations.
CESD’s labour market research has been reported in Asia Research News 2016, a publication from ResearchSEA Limited. The article notes that a key challenge for labour reform in Myanmar is to balance improvements in wages and working conditions against industry’s need to retain a competitive edge.