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JFM welcomes EU sanctions on Myanmar junta mining enterprise, individuals

July 21st, 2023  •  Author:   Justice For Myanmar  •  3 minute read
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July 21, 2023

Justice For Myanmar welcomes the latest round of EU sanctions targeting Mining Enterprise 2 (ME 2), the Quartermaster General, State Administration Council (SAC) members and junta ministers.

ME 2 sits under the junta’s Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Conservation (MONREC) and is one of five state-owned enterprises within the ministry that are illegally controlled by the junta through its February 1, 2021 coup attempt. ME 2 provide a crucial source of funds to the junta, helping to finance its ongoing campaign of terror against the people.

ME 2 is responsible for the mining of tin, tantalum-niobium, titanium, vanadium, bismuth, molybdenum, rare earth elements, radioactive minerals, rubidium, lithium, hafnium, indium, gold, tungsten and heavy metal, according to data from the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative. It generates revenue for the junta through profit sharing arrangements with military conglomerates and Myanmar and foreign companies.

The EU has now sanctioned all but one of the junta-controlled state-owned enterprises under MONREC, having already sanctioned ME 1, Myanma Gems Enterprise and Myanma Timber Enterprise.

A lack of coordination means ME 1 and ME 2 are not yet sanctioned by the UK, Canada or Australia, while Myanmar Pearl Enterprise is sanctioned by the UK, Canada and the USA but not the EU.

Justice For Myanmar calls on the EU, US, UK, Canada, Australia and their allies to coordinate and sanction all state-owned enterprises under MONREC, as well as Myanma Oil and Gas Enterprise (MOGE), which provides the biggest source of foreign revenue to the junta, and the junta-controlled Myanma Foreign Trade Bank and Myanma Investment and Commercial Bank, which the junta uses to receive foreign funds and purchase arms.

The EU has also sanctioned three junta ministers, two members of the junta’s State Administration Council and the Myanmar Army’s Quartermaster General, Kyaw Swar Lin.

The Quartermaster General of the Myanmar army plays a key role in the military’s corrupt business activities, overseeing Myanmar Economic Corporation, the army’s real estate developments and the purchase of arms, equipment and technology.

The Quartermaster General’s Office has direct and indirect business with a number of international corporations and agencies. For the Y Complex development, the Quartermaster General is in business with the Japanese corporations Daiwa House Industries and Tokyo Tatemono, and the publicly funded Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) and Japan Overseas Infrastructure Investment Corporation for Transport and Urban Development (JOIN). For the LOTTE Hotel development, the Quartermaster General is in business with the South Korean corporations POSCO International and LOTTE Hotels & Resorts.

Justice For Myanmar calls on all companies and public financial institutions to urgently and responsibly cut ties with the Office of the Quartermaster General.

Justice For Myanmar spokesperson Yadanar Maung says: “JFM welcomes the latest round of EU sanctions targeting ME 2, the Quartermaster General and other junta members.

“ME 2 and the Quartermaster General play key roles in the Myanmar military cartel, channelling funds to the junta that finance its widening campaign of terror, helping to pay for the bombs, bullets and jet fuel that the junta uses to murder Myanmar people daily.

“The pace of US, UK, EU, Canadian and Australian sanctions are too slow and lack coordination. These governments and their allies need to do far more to cut the junta’s access to funds, arms, equipment and technology.

“We urge the EU to urgently follow the US in sanctioning Myanma Foreign Trade Bank and Myanma Investment and Commercial Bank.

“We call on Australia, Canada, the UK and USA to follow the EU in sanctioning MOGE, and for governments to sanction all MONREC state-owned enterprises.”


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