Daw Suu stresses transparency, accountability in mining sector

By FRONTIER

State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi stressed the importance of transparency and accountability in the mining sector at a meeting with industry representatives in Nay Pyi Taw on December 15.

The State Counsellor also highlighted need for early and ongoing engagement with communities affected by extractive industries at the meeting with members of the International Investors for Mineral Development Association.

The meeting also discussed international standards, such as the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative, said a statement issued by the IIMDA, whose 23 members represent Myanmar companies and their foreign joint venture partners, most of which are registered in Australia, Britain, Canada and the United States.

It quoted IIMDA chair Mr Richard Taylor as saying responsible resource sector investment could play an important role in developing Myanmar’s economy.

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Investment in the sector by companies that adhered to international best practice could be a catalyst for change and would address challenges posed by traditional mining practices, Taylor said.

IIMDA members raised concern about red tape and protracted bureaucratic delays, the release said.

“The State Counsellor encouraged the investors to work closely with the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment [sic] Conservation to eliminate unnecessary processes while maintaining and improving appropriate levels of scrutiny and transparency,” it said.

IIMDA investment in Myanmar is projected to be between US$50 million and $100 million in coming years, providing jobs for up to 3,000 people, said the release.

“Exploration research may lead to mining projects in the future but will not involve any land disturbance or impacts during the exploration phase,” IIMDA said.

“IIMDA is committed to applying and promoting international good practice standards in their Myanmar operations,” it said.

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