Myanmar and Denmark have concluded their annual bilateral government-to-government talks on development cooperation in Nay Pyi Taw. Denmark used the opportunity to confirm the commitment of DKK 505 million (about 80 million USD) for continuing cooperation in the three focal areas of peace, rule of law and human rights; fisheries, climate change and SME support; and basic education.
In an open and constructive atmosphere, the two governments discussed achievements as well as challenges in their bilateral development cooperation. The Danish Ambassador John Nielsen emphasized that Denmark stands ready to continue to support Myanmar in its transition towards a peaceful and inclusive democracy and that he appreciated the opportunity to discuss matters with the Deputy Minister for Planning and Finance as well as with partners across the Country Programme.
One of the activities under the development cooperation programme that has shown particular good progress is the Responsible Business Fund. This Fund supports small and medium-sized enterprises through matching grants to invest in environmental improvements (energy, waste, water), a better working environment, food safety etc. By the end of 2018, more than 450 SMEs will be supported.
Denmark has also urged Myanmar to address the root causes of the crisis in Rakhine and to implement the recommendations of the Rakhine Advisory Commission. Denmark is waiting to see that Myanmar establishes the conditions for a safe, dignified and voluntary return of the Rohingyas.
In addition to its bilateral development cooperation programme, Denmark provides sizeable humanitarian support as well as support through civil society organisations, which amounted to about 20 million USD in 2018. Through Strategic Sector Cooperation, Denmark furthermore supports the promotion of safer and healthier workplaces and improved social dialogue in Myanmar and the Danish Development Finance Institution, IFU, invests in the country’s high-growth sectors and in developing the micro-finance industry.