Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Burma wants to downsize Dawei, says Thai daily

Wednesday, 19 December 2012 11:47 Mizzima News

Thailand’s The Nation reported on Wednesday that Burma’s government has “caused Thailand concern” by proposing a significant reduction in the overall area of the Dawei Special Economic Zone from 204.5 sq km to 150 sq km.

Burmese President Thein Sein (right) discusses details with Thai Premier Yingluck Shinawatra as they travel to the Dawei Special Economic Zone. (PHOTO:Yingluck Shinawatra / Facebook)

“Thailand has responded to the proposal by saying it is already in the process of a feasibility study on the Dawei Deep Sea Port and Dawei Industrial Estate Project based on the original proposed size of the project,” The Nation quoted Thai Transport Minister Chatchart Sithipan as saying.

The news comes just a day after Burma’s President Thein Sein and Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra told reporters in Dawei that both governments would back the multi-billion-dollar project and would actively seek investors.

The Nation went on to quote the Thai Transport Minister as saying: “This is the first meeting in which Myanmar's president clearly said he would invite a third country, likely Japan, to join in the investment. It is a benefit, as Japan has long-term funding sources for investment in infrastructure, including the port and roads.”

Thailand is committed to 35 percent of the US $9 billion-dollar industrial zone set to be located in Burma’s southern Tenasserim Division.

Due to begin in April, the Dawei project involves a deep-sea port, power plants and factories. The Thai investment also includes financing for a highway to run from Dawei on Burma’s Andaman coast across the Thai border to Kanchanaburi and on to Bangkok.
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