A new exciting phase started and a new chapter was added to Myanmar’s history on April 1, 2016, when the country’s first democratically elected Government, in over 50 years took office. However, the country is still far away from being called a democracy. The situation is kind of complicated as the Army still holds a considerable amount of power and many of the senior positions in the Government. In a way it can be said that Myanmar now has two different Governments running it: one army and one civilian. The two different governments follow different ideologies and they both wield a significant amount of power and control. If Myanmar is to move ahead in a specific direction then these parties will need to find a way to cooperate with each other. One of the major challenges for Myanmar’s new Government will be to work along with the army while still taking Myanmar ahead towards democracy.
Myanmar’s new President Mr. Htin Kyaw and National League of Democracy leader Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi have a very long and hard road ahead of them. She has taken four ministries which include foreign affairs, presidential affairs, energy and education. In addition to that she also got a bill passed in the Parliament and created a new special post of State Counselor which she is also holding. No one has any doubts about Ms. Suu Kyi’s abilities and capacity for tremendous hard work. However, handling so many ministries at once is a tremendous amount of load and some are sceptical that it all might prove out to be too much work to be handled by one person. Various other senior and capable members of the National League of Democracy have been given important portfolios and they have got started with handling them already.
All in all, people have great confidence and faith in the new Government and they are hopeful that Myanmar will move steadily towards a better and more prosperous tomorrow. Various other countries have also shown happiness about Myanmar moving towards democracy. U.S. President Mr. Barack Obama himself called Myanmar President Mr. Htin Kyaw and congratulated him. However, there are some major challenges to be met and tackling some of them is going to prove to be very difficult and tricky. Despite prevalent faith and optimism about this Government, a few things will need to be assessed
at the end of its completing one year in office to assess its progress.
Below are the major points on which the NLD Government’s success will be judged:
• Relationship with the Army This is going to be a very important factor because of the amount of control and power army still holds in the Government. In order to get significant work done and to get important bills passed maintaining good relations with them is of crucial importance.
• Progress on Peace Process For development to take place, it is important for peace to be there. At present Myanmar faces serious internal conflicts with various rebel groups at war against the Government. Making peace with them can be a very difficult task but it is necessary for Myanmar’s good future.
• Proper Control on the Natural Resources Myanmar is abundant in various natural resources such as natural gas, timber, jade, copper
and more. However, in spite of benefiting from them Myanmar has mainly faced numerous problems because of them. They could have been a boon but have proved to be a curse for this country. Proper control of these resources and making the most of them is extremely important for Myanmar’s development.
• Development of Agriculture Sector
About seventy percent of Myanmar’s population works in the agriculture field. However, in spite of this sector being so huge and also the major source of exports out of Myanmar so farit has been greatly neglected. Myanmar’s new Government needs to pay proper attention towards this sector and help its farmer raise their income and standard of living. A much longer list of areas of improvement for Myanmar can be made. However, the factors mentioned above are going to play the most crucial part in Myanmar’s economic development. We are hopeful that this new Government will prove to be very capable and it will do well in each one of these areas.