Myanmar – Illegal activities, business on the rise amid lack of official action


Location: Myitkyina, Yangon- Myanmar

Language: Burmese

Duration: 00:03:46

Source: A24

Restrictions: A24 clients

Dateline: 14/03/2022


Experts and analysts on foreign and international investment have voiced their concern and dissatisfaction about the illegal activities by foreign investors in the city of Myitkyina, which sits close to the Chinese borders. The most prominent illegal activities that have spread across the country and reached the cities are some of the most prominent illegal activities the foreign investors indulge in. Illegal transportation of goods is also widespread. Ko Ko Oo, who is an analyst on foreign investment, accused the local authorities of collaborating with the investors, saying that the illegal trucks have been driving on the streets for years now and everyone can see them, adding that the authorities might have been streamlining the process for them and providing “corridors” for them. He said that illegal business has grown, mostly illegal gambling, adding that the phenomenon is now widespread.


(Soundbite) Ko Chit – a foreign investment researcher:

“I have to talk mainly about Shwe Kokko (border area of Thailand and Myanmar). 

The Shwe Kokko case was popular. Even the border guard forces and the Myanmar military couldn’t address this well-known case; therefore, we can assume that China-based companies use the rest of the border cities as places to grow their illegal businesses, like doing illegal gambling houses in urban cities. And also, there are a lot of illegal Chinese people living in the downtown area. This mainly happens in border cities, even Chinese car license plates are seen in the towns, as well. Therefore, they couldn’t have lied about the fact that they have good collaboration with Myanmar’s authorities.”  

(Soundbite) Ko Ko Oo – an analyst and a foreign investment expert:

“As we all know it’s a jade, they’re doing jade mining both legally and illegally. 

The most popular and high-growth illegal business is gambling. Starting from border cities to urban cities, illegal gambling drains online popularly in urban cities. Currently, there are only a few income sources available, so online gambling entices some youths to do it. That’s why Chinese investors are more focusing and getting profit from it.”

“The illegal trucks are already here for many years ago. At this moment, they are more transparent to see and know. The authorities are collaborating with them and making highway corridors. From those corridors, cars with Chinese license plates are going officially and everybody could see this, even the authorities. They didn’t tell and didn’t take any action for it. That’s why we can say that they are also collaborating with Chinese investors to do their illegal businesses here.”

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