Myanmar Faces Empty Factories, Closed Banks

By Jon Emontabout 1 month ago

SINGAPOREBank branches in Myanmar are closed and government employees are boycotting work. Factory workers have fled to their rural homes and foreign companies have flown their overseas employees out. The internet is largely cut off.

More than two months since the military seized power in a coup and unleashed a deadly campaign to suppress protests, the economy is collapsing,with the World Bank and othersexpecting a double-digit contraction over the course of this year. The upheaval is erasing the large gains that the country had made in reducing poverty and is frightening away foreign businesses and tourists that had done much to lift Myanmar over the last decade.

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It is already one of Asias poorest countries. Six million people live on less than $3.20 a day,a poverty threshold for lower middle-income countries like Myanmar. A fourth of the nations children arefar too small for their age because of inadequate nutrition.

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