Singapore – Avoidance of Double Taxation

for Myanmar Citizens living and working in Singapore

To remove unfair and unjust double taxation practice that Myanmar citizens living and working in Singapore are facing despite the fact that there is a Comprehensive Avoidance of Double Taxation Agreement (DTA) signed between Singapore and Myanmar.

Contact
Naing Moe Aung
Mobile: (+65) 9871 0563
Fax: (+65) 6491 5522
Email: naing {at} projectdecision.com

Please download the template, print it out and start collecting the signatures from those around you and return it to the address below by 01 July 2007.
Naing Moe Aung
Block 74, Bedok North Road
#08-108
Singapore 460074

Ka Daung Nyin Thar wants the Myanmarese workers in Singapore to be united and participate in the campaign which would compel Singapore PM to discuss with Myanmar government to respect the agreement.

First spotted on Global Voices Online
Further details are available here.

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Singapore – Island sits in an ocean of economic turbulence

Recommended by an anonymous emailer who I would like to thank for drawing my attention to the article. It is from the Sydney Morning Herald on the April 30, 2007.

Eric Ellis looks for explanations for Singapore’s booming property market.

SINGAPORE’S property market is roaring. And why I know that is because the lease on our apartment will soon expire and our landlady wants 70 per cent more rent than she did in 2004.

No matter that the place leaks like a Canberra cabinet and that its 1970s-wired electricity trips at least once a week: these are details too far for our poco-curante proprietrix. But she has noticed that a private banker from Tokyo has signed, sight unseen, for a same-sized unimproved flat downstairs at 150 per cent more than the vacating lessee paid, and she reckons we are getting a bargain for $6000 a month.

It’s all very puzzling as there’s no textbook rationale to the sudden real estate boom here. The economy’s growing at an unremarkable-for-Asia 6 per cent, much the same as it has for years, save the difficult “Asian Contagion” period of the late 1990s. There’s no more government pump-priming than usual, none of the official withholding of land to get prices artificially moving that’s much loved in Singapore’s rival for city-state hothouse, Hong Kong. And though wealthy enough, with just 4.5 million people Singapore is still 2.4 billion consumers short of being “Chindia”, Asia’s neologism du jour.

From Sotheby’s to shares, Singapore has no shortage of places to park cash. But new luxury apartment blocks are sprouting among the frangipani, touting all manner of metropolitan arcadia – infinity pools, gyms, private clubs. They sport funky names such as Trillium and Botanika, fashioned on hoardings in designer fonts usually seen in Wallpaper magazine. My favourite promises that the elysian towers rising behind it will be “Home to 46 of the Most Luminous Families” – which will presumably take care of electricity bills, also on the rise.

The reasons why it’s suddenly salad days for Singapore developers seem to reside in neighbouring Indonesia, a country rated by the graft watchdog Transparency International at 130th of the 163 nations it tracks in its annual corruption survey. TI’s first place, ie, the world’s least corrupt place, is occupied by Finland, Iceland and New Zealand. Australia ranks joint ninth with The Netherlands.

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Myanmar leader meets Singapore FM

Main document from People’s Daily Online.

The first secretary of the Myanmar State Peace and Development Council, Lieutenant-General Thein Sein, met with visiting Singapore Foreign Minister George Yeo in the new capital of Nay Pyi Taw Tuesday, the state-run Myanmar Radio and Television reported in a night broadcast.

Both sides did not disclose the details about their meeting.

Burma has offered to be a long-term supplier of sand, granite and other constuction materials to Singapore.

The city-state’s foreign ministry says Burma’s ruling military junta made the offer to Singapore Foreign Minister George Yeo, who is visiting the country.

Singapore, which lacks natural resources of its own, has been looking for other sources of construction materials after neighbouring Indonesia banned the export of sand.

Indonesian officials have said the ban is necessary to protect the environment, but critics say it is linked to pressure from Jakarta on Singapore over the signing of an extradition treaty. From Radio Australia News

Yeo, who arrived here on Monday on a three-day visit to Myanmar, had met with his Myanmar counterpart U Nyan Win and discussions were held on promotion of the two countries’ trade cooperation and matters related to cultural affairs, official sources said earlier.

Yeo’s Myanmar trip came two years after Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong visited the country in March 2005, during which Myanmar and Singapore agreed to strengthen their bilateral cooperation in sectors including tourism, airlink, improvement of business environment and increase of foreign investment in Myanmar as well as technical cooperation.

Economic cooperation between Myanmar and Singapore has been developing rapidly since 1995 when cooperation programs for the sectors of tourism, agriculture, livestock and fisheries, maritime transport and human resources development were initiated.

Meanwhile, Singapore has injected over 1.5 billion U.S. dollars into the country since Myanmar opened to foreign investment in late 1988, according to Myanmar official statistics. The investment was mainly put into hotels and tourism at the early stage and later expanded to oil and natural gas exploration.

The Myanmar figures also show that Singapore’s bilateral trade with Myanmar amounted to 822.90 million dollars in the fiscal year 2005-06. Of the total, Singapore’s exports to Myanmar was valued at 558.65 million dollars, while its imports from Myanmar stood at 264.25 million.

Relevant Articles:
Recent Singapore/Burma issues
ST Censors Singapore-Burma Druglord Connection

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Singapore foreign minister visits Myanmar

Way to go George.

I wonder if you will be popping in to say hello to Aung San Suu Kyi who says “Tourism to Burma is helping to prolong the life of one of the most brutal and destructive regimes in the world. Visiting now is tantamount to condoning the regime.”

Agence France Presse: Singapore foreign minister visits Myanmar
Mon 2 Apr 2007

Singapore’s foreign minister George Yeo arrived Monday in military-run Myanmar on an official three-day visit, officials said.

“George Yeo came here at the invitation of the Myanmar government. He will stay here for three days,” an official at the Singapore embassy confirmed.

Myanmar’s information ministry said Yeo had arrived in Yangon and will travel Tuesday to the new administrative capital Naypyidaw to meet with senior officials.

Neither the ministry nor the embassy would provide further details on the trip.

Myanmar’s Prime Minister Soe Win has been hospitalised in Singapore for more than two weeks.

The junta insists that he is in good health and is merely there for medical checks, but exiled dissidents believe Soe Win’s health could be fading.

The junta leader, Senior General Than Shwe, also spent nearly two weeks in Singapore for medical checks in January.

Over the last three months, several firms in Singapore have signed contracts to search for natural gas in Myanmar waters.

However opponents to the regime have condemned the deals for throwing a monetary lifeline to the junta by reducing the effect of Western sanctions on the military.

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Burmese PM in Singapore General Hospital

medium_soewin2.jpgAnyone like to organise a peaceful protest and show the leader of the Orwellian state, with teashops that their continued detention under house arrest of opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi is not acceptable? Why not get a few posters of Aung San Suu Kyi?

Soe Win was made prime minister in 2004 from the BBC

Burma’s Prime Minister Soe Win is being treated at a hospital in Singapore, an official from the Burmese embassy in the city-state said.

The official would not give details of Soe Win’s illness, saying only that it was a “serious health matter”.

The Irrawaddy, a publication run by Burmese journalists in exile, reported last week that the prime minister may be suffering from leukaemia.

medium_suukyi.jpg

Some might argue that the protest would simply amount to the harassment of a ‘patient’. This patient is however no ordinary patient. The people of Burma and I might add the world would never have such an opportunity to voice their concerns. A protest would simply reinforce condemnation of the fact that after the national elections were won by a landslide in 1990, the military refused to hand over power to Aung San Suu Kyi and it is unacceptable. This is the man who is “the suspected mastermind of a deadly attack on opposition forces four years ago.” which left up to 80 people dead, according to dissidents (AFP).

Since then, the pro-democracy leader has spent most of her time in some form of detention, despite a barrage of criticism from home and abroad – and even international sanctions. BBC

So where is Soe Win? [Just realised that a previous anonymous statement also refers to Singapore General Hospital]

Soe Win is the second of Burma’s ruling junta to seek medical care in Singapore this year. In January, junta leader Snr-Gen Than Shwe, 73, was treated at the same hospital after arriving in the city-state on December 31. Than Shwe is believed to be suffering from diabetes, hypertension and other ailments. BBC

And with the power of the internet at my finger tips I was able to work out that Burma’s Prime Minister Gen Soe Win is being treated in Singapore General Hospital for Leukemia.

January 08, 2007
Burmese military leader Snr-Gen Than Shwe was discharged from Singapore General Hospital on Monday, according to sources in the city state. He was reportedly admitted in late December with an intestinal ailment. Some news reports said that he was suffering from intestinal cancer. Sources within Singapore’s Burmese community said that he is expected to return to Burma in the next two days.

Protest anyone?
Post the date, time and place in the comment section. Go on I dare you.
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Myanmar PM in Singapore hospital

Just move the entire military junta over to Singapore and then they could run Burma and keep Aung San Suu Kyi under house arrest while they shift the cash over to Singaporean banks.

medium_SoeWin.2.jpgSINGAPORE (AFP) – Myanmar’s prime minister Soe Win, the suspected mastermind of a deadly attack on opposition forces four years ago, is in a Singapore hospital with an unspecified medical problem, an embassy official told AFP Tuesday.

Soe Win arrived “quite some time ago” and is in the Singapore General Hospital, said the official who asked not to be identified, and who declined to provide details of his condition.

“He is here in a private capacity and it is true that he is here for medical reasons,” the official said. “He doesn’t want any publicity whatsoever with regard to his health problem.”

Officials rarely speak on the record in military-ruled Myanmar, for fear of repercussions by the junta, which runs the isolated Southeast Asian nation with an iron fist.

Soe Win, a lieutenant general, is thought to be aged about 58, and replaced the disgraced Khin Nyunt as prime minister in October 2004.

He had risen swiftly in the leadership after allegedly plotting an attack on the motorcade of opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi in May 2003.

After the attack she was imprisoned and then placed under house arrest, where she remains.

The clash between supporters of Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD) and a pro-junta group left up to 80 people dead, according to dissidents. The government said four people were killed and 50 injured.

Soe Win, a tall and stern man, is considered to be among the leadership hardliners.

The embassy official in Singapore would not detail when Soe Win had arrived in the city-state, except to say it was prior to March. On February 6, Myanmar state media said Soe Win had issued a warning to the nation’s judges against corruption.

In January, Myanmar’s aging junta leader Senior General Than Shwe returned home after medical tests at Singapore General Hospital. The checks showed him to be “very much OK,” the embassy official said at the time.

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Singapore firms, Myanmar sign oil deal

Is Singapore now a front for any country or company that is willing to do deals with this repugnant regime that continues to imprison the democratically elected leader Ang San Sui Kyi?

YANGON, Myanmar

Two Singaporean-registered companies with a link to Russia have signed a deal for offshore oil and gas exploration and production sharing in Myanmar, state media reported Saturday.

Silver Wave Energy Pte. Ltd. and Silver Wave Sputnik Petroleum Pte. Ltd. signed the deal with state-owned Myanma Oil and Gas Enterprise, or MOGE, the New Light of Myanmar newspaper said.

It gave no details of the deal, saying only that it was signed by the energy minister from the Russian Republic of Kalmykia, Boris Chedyrov; the chairman of Silver Wave Energy, U Min Min Aung; and the managing director of MOGE, Myint Kyi.

Since Myanmar liberalized its investment code in late 1988, the military-ruled nation has attracted its largest foreign investments in the energy sector. It has signed oil and gas exploration contracts with France’s Total SA, Unocal Corp. of the United States, Malaysia’s Petronas, Thailand’s PTT Exploration & Production PCL, Daewoo of South Korea and companies from Russia, India and Australia.

New contracts continue to be signed despite the condemnation of the military regime by Western nations for its poor record on human rights and its failure to hand over power to a democratically elected government.

The United States and the European Union have imposed economic sanctions on Myanmar in recent years as a result.

Myanmar’s current junta took power in 1988 after crushing the pro-democracy movement led by Aung San Suu Kyi. In 1990, it refused to hand over power when Suu Kyi’s party won a landslide election victory.

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