China is Evacuating Fellow Countrymen From Myanmar

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The Chinese government has ordered Chinese companies operating in Myanmar to send home all non-essential workers and family members.

 

Beijing has reacted reluctantly since the coup in Myanmar, and numerous protesters against the coup say the neighbouring country is behind the military junta. Chinese companies were attacked by protesters over the weekend.

The South China Morning Post newspaper reports that Chinese companies and projects in Myanmar are ordered to get everyone out of the country when work is stopped. In companies that are continuing, the employees who would soon return must go home immediately. Chinese people who live or work in remote places also have to leave.

Since the coup in Myanmar in early February, there have been massive protests and strikes. The internet is often closed, and banks are closed so that no more money can be withdrawn. The Chinese government wants the countrymen to prepare well for their departure. According to an anonymous Chinese spokesman who was working on a construction project, almost all the Chinese work has now come to a standstill as a result of the coup.

An important reason not to wait is that companies have become the target of protesters who see the Communist People’s Republic as an ally of the military coup plotters. Dozens of Chinese companies were attacked and destroyed or damaged in Myanmar’s largest city, Yangon, on Sunday. At least two Chinese were injured.

China has many economic interests in Myanmar, including projects to extract oil and gas. The country is therefore involved in, among other things, the construction of roads, ports and pipelines. Beijing has been an essential lender for the rulers in Myanmar for years. The value of two-way trade is estimated at EUR 12 billion per year.

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