Myanmar Visa

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INTRODUCTION MYANMAR


      Myanmar:  Is known as the Golden Land not only for its golden pagodas but also for its rich natural resources including its vast fertile lands yellow paddy fields, golden teak forests, colorful precious stone and blessed by nature with many attractions, such as snow-capped mountains, great rivers, beautiful hills, picturesque lakes, unspoilt beaches. Myanmar is also rich in cultural heritages and its traditional arts and crafts combines with the charm and the hospitality of its people made Myanmar, the most fascinating destination in Asia.

Historical Background:
        Myanmar history dates back to the early 11th Century when King Anawrahta unified the country and founded the First Myanmar Empire in Bagan more than 20 years before the Norman Conquest of England in 1066. The Bagan Empire encompassed the areas of the present-day Myanmar and the entire Menam Valley in Thailand and lasted two centuries.

       The Second Myanmar Empire was founded in mid 16th Century by King Bayinnaung.
King Alaungpaya founded the last Myanmar Dynasty in 1752 and it was during the zenith of this Empire that the British moved into Myanmar. Like India, Myanmar became a British colony but only after three Anglo-Myanmar Wars in 1825, 1852 and 1885. During the Second World War, Myanmar was occupied by the Japanese from 1942 till the return of the Allied forces in 1945.


      Myanmar has become a sovereign independent state since 4th January 1948 after 62 years under the colonial administration. It is remarkable to note that Myanmar is the country that regained her independence first though she was the last country occupied by the British in this region.

Geography:
      Myanmar has a total area of 676,577 sq. km, it is twice the size of Vietnam and about the size of United Kingdom and France combined. Geographically, Myanmar is the largest country in South-East Asia Peninsula sharing borders with Bangladesh, India, China, Laos and Thailand.

Climate:
       Myanmar has the effects of the monsoon in different parts of the country. Temperature varies from 38o C to 19o C varied according to altitude; humidity from 82.8% to 66%.

Seasons:
       Myanmar has three distinctive seasons; namely, hot (mid-February to mid-May), rainy (mid-May to mid-October), cool (mid-October to mid-February).
The best time to visit is the cool dry winter season from mid-October to mid-February.

People:
       Myanmar is a union of many nationalities; speaking over one hundred languages and dialects. The term Myanmar embraces all nationalities. The major races are the Kachin, Kayah, Kayin, Chin, Bamar, Mon, Rakhine and Shan. There are 7 states and 7 divisions in Myanmar.

Population:
        The population of Myanmar is at present over 53,642,000. As regards education in Myanmar (according to the figures of 1993) , the literacy rate stood at 81%.
Yangon is former capital of Myanmar and  has a population of nearly 6 million.  Naypyidaw became the capital of Myanmar in 2006.
Language
Myanmar is the lingua franca. English is widely understood in cities like Yangon, Mandalay, Bagan, etc. Cantonese, fukienese and Mandarin can also be used in the business circles here.

Religion:
       Over 80% of the Myanmars are Buddhists. There are also Christians, Muslims, Hindus and even some animists. However, there is full freedom of worship for followers of other religions. Christian missionaries have been active in Myanmar for over 150 years. Among them, the American Baptists were first on the scene.

Culture:
      Myanmar lies on the cross-roads of two of the world’s great civilizations _ China and India. Its culture is a blend of both interspersed with Myanmar native traits and characteristics. Buddhism has great influence on daily life of the Myanmar. The people have preserved the traditions of close family ties, respect for the elders, reverence for Buddhism and simple native dress. Myanmars are known for their simple hospitality and friendliness.

Economy:
      Since late 1988, Myanmar has replaced the centrally planned economy to a more liberalized economic policy based on market-oriented system. In moving towards, a more market oriented economy, Myanmar has liberalized domestic and external trade, promoting the role of private sector and opening up to foreign investment.
Myanmar is richly endowed with renewable and non-renewable energy resources which are being exploited by the state sector with the participation of local and foreign investors.
Foreign Investment Law, new Central Bank of Myanmar Law, Financial Institutions of Myanmar Law and Myanmar Tourism Law have been enacted and Chambers of Commerce have been reactivated.
Electricity is 230 volts 50 cycles.

Time:
      Myanmar Time is 6:30 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time.

Currency:
     Myanmar currency is Kyat which comprises 100 pyas.
Notes: Kyats 1000, Kyats 500, Kyats 200,Kyats 100, Kyats 50,Kyats 20,Kyats 5, Kyat 1.
Coins: Kyat 1, Pya 50, Pya 25, Pya 10, Pya 5.

Water:
    Drink only bottled or boiled water.

Shopping:
     Bargaining is an art long practiced in Asian countries including Myanmar. So feel free to ask for a proper discount when shopping in places where prices are not marked. Be careful in dealing with sidewalk vendors who may not offer genuine goods at fair prices.
Myanmar arts and crafts, mostly pure hand-made are best souvenirs and prices are very reasonable. Lacquerware, wood and ivory carvings, tapestries, silverware, brassware, silk and cotton fabrics and shoulder bags are some of the favourite items. For jewellery, there are Myanma ruby, sapphire, jade and pearl available at Myanmar gems shops.

Agriculture:
     Agriculture remains the main sector of the economy and measures have been taken to increase productivity, diversification of crop patterns, and revitalization of agriculture exports.

Myanmar Forests Based Eco:
     Unusual endowment of the diverse array of species and ecotourism signify Myanmar as one of the richest biological resources in Asia. In the diverse forest ecotourism approximately 7,000 plants have been recorded, of which 1,071 species are endemic to Myanmar. Presence of recorded 1,000 bird species (12% of world total) , 300 mammal species and 360 reptiles in Myanmar are the evidence of its richness in biodiversity.
In addition, about 68 swallowtail butterflies, representing 12% the world total, make Myanmar the fifth richest country in the world. The Forest Department has officially put on record 841 species of orchids, but the experts estimate there are 1,500 to 2,000, species in Myanmar. One of the rare orchids, Paphiopedilum Wadii had been found in Kachin State.

Tourism
      The Industry of Hotels and Tourism is the most promising business in Myanmar these days. There are many hotels, restaurants, tour companies and several other related services growing throughout the country. The Ministry of Hotels & Tourism also is making all-out efforts to promote this industry while foreign investment in this area is earnestly invited, too. As a result, there have been more than 150 hotels (local / overseas ownership) being operated: 134 private hotels and 16 joint-venture hotels.
Myanmar is expecting more visitors with the same exuberance you can feel around you.