The statement comes as governments and companies with interests in Myanmar are under increasing pressure to sever links with the country’s military junta after it overthrew Aung San Suu Kyi’s administration and cracked down on protesters.
EIA Forests campaigners have learnt that the brutal military junta which seized control of Myanmar on 1 February is seeking an injection of hard currency by selling off thousands of tonnes of illegal timber to international markets.
Verifying the origin of timber destined for export and ensuring its legality is a crucial aspect of trade regulations under CITES. Most of the countries in the Lower Mekong Region have a general understanding of the “legal acquisition findings” requirement but none have published national guidance to ensure that the verification of the legal acquisition is done systematically and in a transparent manner.
“By expanding business ties with the Myanmar military as it carries out a bloody crackdown, the Thai state-owned PTT has shown little regard for the lives and freedom of Myanmar’s people,” said Shayna Bauchner, an Asia researcher for the watchdog group.
The regime reorganized three crucial committees in March as it pushes ahead with plans to implement giant infrastructure projects which are a part of China’s Ambitious Belt and Road Initiative.
Japan provided 189.3 billion yen ($1.74 billion at current rates) in development aid to Myanmar in fiscal 2019, more than any other country with disclosed figures — numbers for China have not been released.
With international investors shunning the military regime, China is one of the few countries willing to do business with the coup leaders and invest heavily in the country.
The study, published in the journal Cities, focussed on the Phu My Hung project in Vietnam, the Amarapura project in Myanmar and Boeung Kak Lake in Cambodia, and is the result of Dr Hawken’s engagement with recent calls from the United Nations for greater accountability in megaprojects globally.
In the country that once topped the Charities Aid Foundation’s World Giving Index, which ranks countries in terms of generosity, the military regime has made it a crime to give or receive charity, humanitarian workers said. Volunteers and aid workers are now targeted by the junta’s security forces under vague laws, and many have gone into hiding to continue helping the many needy.
Begonia is one of the largest genera of flowering plants with over 2,000 species. They are found naturally in tropical and subtropical regions around the world.