Saturday, January 24, 2015

Day Six: China Power Investment Corporation

Day Six

China Power Investment Corporation

For our last meeting of the trip, we were honored to meet with three representatives from China Power International (CPI), a major Chinese SOE working on a number of hydropower projects in Myanmar. Most notable of their projects has been the construction of the Myitsone Dam, of which the Myanmar Government forced a stop to the construction in 2011 due to local opposition to the project. CPI said that they had assumed the government was taking care of public concerns and were taken aback with the forced suspension. The opening of the country to more investment from abroad has been a challenge for Chinese firms who had worked with the former military government with ease, but CPI remains determined to continue expanding power projects in the country and give back more to help the country develop.

Meanwhile, Myanmar is a highly underserved market for energy service. Chow Jing Hwa, the Vice President of CPI, told us that while the US operates at 1.3 kilowatts of power use per capita and China operates at 0.178 kilowatts per capita, Myanmar operates at a mere 0.05 kilowatts per capita. The whole country, including the large cities like Yangon and Mandalay, report frequent power outages. Nevertheless, around 100 gigawatts of hydroelectric potential is found in the country, while only 2.6 gigawatts has been developed to date. CPI hopes to continue to build hydropower electricity in the future, but is having to deal with more public opposition to Chinese encroachment and incoming competition from abroad. According to Mr. Chow, working in Myanmar has been more challenging than working in other countries that CPI operates due to a lack of clear operating standards in the country, a lack of well-trained engineers, the lack of any third party groups to monitor government actions, and the security concern with armed minority groups.

To ease local concerns about CPI’s operations, they have begun building their CSR programs in the country, something that the Myanmar government has highly been stressing in recent years. In 2013, CPI issued their first CSR report, which is available on request. It has been hard, however, as there is a struggle to define how much of role investors should take in development projects which should be run by the government. While CPI wishes that it could be doing more, right now it will continue to do its best with the limited opportunities and large restrictions currently in place.

~Kevin J Cottrell

Friday, January 23, 2015

Day Five: Indian Embassy and Chinese Embassy

Day Five

Indian Embassy in Yangon

The SAIS study group met with the Embassy representative from the Commerce and Investment department with whom we were lucky to both hear from and discuss matters of business development and current political issues with. As a major trading partner of Myanmar, India has held an important role as the 3rd largest export destination and the 5th largest source of imports into Myanmar. Sharing a border that stretches nearly 1,000 miles long and and a trade agreement signed in the 1970s, the two countries have enjoyed bilateral trade which generated up to $2.1 billion in 2013-14.

Regarding the composition of trade, agricultural products in the form of pulses and beans generated nearly $600 million of India’s imports from Myanmar. Other secondary agricultural trade products were imports of timber and wood products. In line with Prime Minister Modi’s initiative to promote different economic corridors such as the Corner Station Highway and the BCIM Corridor, investors have been looking to support infrastructure to help facilitate transportation for trade. The lack of Infrastructure as evidenced in the banking sector, the inefficiency of movement in the shipping industry, and the small number of passenger flights between the two countries (presently only 3 daily flights) highlight some of the present challenges Indian investors face when conducting commerce.

India’s assistance to Myanmar was estimated to be about $1.5-$2.5 billion as reported by our speaker, with a majority funneled towards the construction of Yangon’s new airport, expansion of the country’s highway, and a buildup of “soft zones”, such as the IT sector. The diplomat expressed that India was also engaged in capacity building in the natural resources sector through skills and technical training and corporate social responsibility initiatives (mainly in the oil and gas industry) as part of their investment activities. To further encourage investment into Myanmar’s economy by not only India but by the rest of the global community, the diplomat emphasized that improvements could made to the country’s investment regulations to avoid double taxation as well as their real estate market to prevent prohibitively high prices from increasing.

Our discussion with the diplomat illustrated important themes of international development that SAISers are well familiar with: the development of a country cannot be done overnight or even within the span of a few years. There is also no set model of development for a country- the unique political, economic, social elements of the environment should all be considered and taken into account as they influence what can be expanded upon.

 ~Eleanor Doong

India’s political engagement with Myanmar has remained consistent through the years despite political turmoil and regime changes in Myanmar. Bilateral trade between the two countries currently stands at $2.1 billion in favor of Myanmar with India importing nearly $600-700 million worth of rice and pulses. Other significant imports include wood logs and timber. However, following an April 2014 order by the Myanmar government banning export of logs, the timber trade has come down substantially. On the other hand, nearly 33% of Myanmar’s pharmaceuticals imports comes from India.

In terms of investments, India has committed nearly $400 million in the oil and gas sector. Indian oil majors such as ONGC and GAIL are active players in the Burmese oil and gas sector: the two Indian companies are part of the international consortium led by Korean firm Daewoo to build the Shwe Gas and Oil Pipeline from Myanmar’s western coast all the way up to the China-Myanmar border. India is also actively involved in building the India-Myanmar-Thailand tri-lateral highway in order to enhance connectivity and expand New Delhi’s engagement with ASEAN. The project has attracted funding from ADB, JICA and the Indian government and is expected to be completed by 2016. The Sitwe Port Development project is also of significant interest to India and is being executed by an Indian firm, Essar. The port is likely to be commissioned in early 2015. However, building support infrastructure from the Sitwe port to the inner mainland will be crucial for the success of the project. Overall, Indian investment commitments in Myanmar total $1.5-2 billion.

Other areas of cooperation between the two countries include student exchanges through the ITEC program, double taxation avoidance agreement and tie-ups between India’s IT sector and Burmese banks and telecom companies. 

~Shrey Verma

Chinese Embassy in Yangon

After spending a hot midday at the Bo Gyoke Aung San Market, Professor Knight and six of us students attended the meeting with Ambassador Houlan Yang and Mr. Zhu Bin, attaché in political and information section. The number of visiting delegates was capped at seven perhaps due to the setting of the meeting room two chairs at the end of the room, facing the door. In the background, there was a folding screen decorated with a traditional Chinese painting. On the left and right, were chairs for the rest of delegates, three on each side.
Having listened to our self-introductions, the ambassador gave a brief overview of Chinese investment in Myanmar and answered our questions. In recent years in Myanmar, Chinese investment in energy and industry has been increasing. As for agriculture, China has sent Chinese agricultural officers and farmers to Myanmar to exchange ideas and provide training, as well as provided technology transfers.
Ambassador Yang mentioned with concern that throughout these years, many big programs invested by the Chinese have faced local challenges. Such challenges rose from a few reasons. First of all, Myanmar people may be discontent about some agreements signed between Chinese companies and the military government during the junta era which were not transparent. In that era, signing contracts with the military regime was the easier and fast way to do business. However, this is no longer the case in todays Myanmar. Amb. Yang said that Chinese companies should follow and respect local business rules, culture and religion, as well as take on more social responsibilities.
Another reason is environmental concerns. Many hydropower projects are protested by local residents who fear that such projects will destroy the eco-system. In the hydropower sector, Chinese investment is much bigger than other countries, which makes it more difficult and costly for the former to withdraw from projects amid demonstrations. The ambassador mentioned that a commission has been set up by the China and Myanmar to help deal with conflicts between Chinese investors and local communities and NGOs. However, given the inertia of public opinion and the hindrance from some media that make news without having done comprehensive researches, the work is not easy
When stressing the importance of Myanmar to China, the ambassador said that China and Myanmar share a border of over 4000 km. Myanmars development is of great significance to the strategic opening of the Chinese hinterland, especially Yunnan Province. The Myanmar government has suggested building cross-border economic zones. China welcomes the idea, nevertheless, with concerns about the difficulties to control such a long border line and ongoing ethnical conflicts in north Myanmar, it remains prudent and supports ceasefire among ethnics.
Furthermore, Amb. Yang also talked about the challenges for Myanmars development: A lack of electricity (70 percent of the population has no access to electricity), infrastructure and connectivity. These shortages not only severely hinders residents living standard, but also investment activities. To solve these problems, both Myanmar and China support the building of the BangladeshChinaIndiaMyanmar (BCIM) Economic Corridor. The BCIM, consists of a network of roads, railways, waterways, and airways, aims to improve connectivity, infrastructure, trade and investment in South Asia. In February, Myanmar will host a BCIM talk focusing on road connections which faces some local rejections due to fear of a large inflow of Bangladesh Immigrants.
When asked about the potential of Myanmar becoming a test ground for China-India business collaboration, the ambassador said such cooperation is already happening The Shwe gas project, invested by corporations or government entities from China, India, South Korea, and Myanmar. There is also potential for cooperation between the two countries in building the BCIM corridor.
Overall, this was a very informative talk about the Chinese perspective in terms of doing business in Myanmar. I really appreciated the ambassadors hospitality, approachability, and above all, candidness.
 ~Xiaoqun Dong

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Day Four: Yangon Sightseeing and Alumni Dinner at Sakura Tower

Day Four

Yangon Sightseeing

The students spent the day visiting various sights in Yangon including Shwedagon Pagoda, Kandawgyi Park, and Bogyoke Aung San Market.

Following a day of sightseeing the group reconvened for a traditional Burmese meal with SAIS alumni living and working in Yangon.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Day Three: US Embassy in Rangoon and Myanmar Centre for Responsible Business (MCRB)

Day Three

US Embassy in Rangoon

Our Wednesday morning started with a visit to the beautiful U.S. Embassy located by Inya Lake in Yangon. After going through the security checks, we walked through the manicured courtyard into a large conference room. Our meeting was with James Shea (Political/Economic Officer), Christopher Mohrman (Second Secretary - Political/Economic Section), and Jeffrey Warner (Political Officer). We were pleasantly surprised to learn that they were SAIS alums, or as they said: some of the “SAIS mafia” in Myanmar.

After introductions, Jeffrey Warner started to talk about the political situation in Myanmar. With a specific focus on the upcoming elections in October/November 2015, Jeffrey talked us through the political timeline in Myanmar. The Myanmar Parliament was in session since Monday, and their main discussion topics included amendments to the Constitution. With respect to the upcoming elections, it was expected that by June/July, the voter’s list would be disclosed, and in August the official dates of election would be announced. The months of September and October would serve as the 60 days campaigning period. Based on the discussion, we sensed that while there are a few international organizations monitoring the process and results of the elections, it is yet to be seen whether the elections will be inclusive, particularly in regions with ethnic conflicts.

James Shea then gave us a summary of the economic scenario in Myanmar. Since 2011/12 the country had opened up, and the government had made reforms in trade, foreign investment, and addressed issues in areas including banking, finance, corruption, and money laundering. However, the government still needs to consolidate its Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) and domestic investment laws, implement and institutionalize existing rules and regulations, and introduce new laws to address areas like intellectual property, alien workers, arbitration, labor rights, etc. The discussion also highlighted the main hurdle in Myanmar was capacity and lack of qualified human capital. While both the government and foreign investors were optimistic of economic opportunities, the country presently lacks the capacity to manage the sudden growth. This reiterated the sentiment of DICA (see entry for DICA meeting), and it seems that both the US government and the government of Myanmar see a need to strengthen human capital in Myanmar's public sector.

Christopher Mohrman then spoke to us about Myanmar’s external ties. We learnt that China has had a prominent presence in Myanmar for decades. However, since 2000, the country decided to redirect its dependency from China and strenghten its ties with other nations. There were many indicators that highlighted the change in policy, including the suspension of the Myitsone dam, renegotiation of the copper mine agreement, and the commander-in-chief’s first visit to Vietnam. While Myanmar was reducing its dependency on China it was not minimizing its external relations relations overall. We also learnt that historically, corporate social responsibility measures of Chinese companies would often come in the form of donations to charities. However, more recently, Chinese companies were making an effort to invest in the communities of their projects. For Myanmar, the U.S. brand was considered “the standard,” and the country favors American brands over other nations. Furthermore, American investors are considered to be responsible investors. With respect to foreign investors, we also got a sense that the people of Myanmar expect foreign companies to be involved with the communities, and engage extensively through corporate social responsibility.

After hearing about Myanmar’s political, economic, and external relations, numerous questions followed, which added more insight to our knowledge and understanding of the country. The meeting at the U.S. Embassy was very interesting and we were very happy to hear a summary of the political and economic situation in Myanmar. As it was day three of our meetings, the discussion at the U.S. Embassy served as a validation of what we had heard before. After the meeting, we had a sense of what the American Embassy was doing in Myanmar, and an insight about the U.S. strategy and leverage in the country.

~ Neeli Shah

Myanmar Centre for Responsible Business (MCRB)

After paying the visit to US Embassy in the morning, our next meeting brought us to the Myanmar Centre for Responsible Business (MCRB) in downtown Yangon. MCRB is a non-governmental initiative created to encourage responsible business activities in Myanmar, and as MCRB's mission notes, the Centre "aims to provide a trusted, impartial forum for dialogue, seminars, and briefings to relevant parties as well as access to international expertise and tools."

We met the founder of MCRB, a very elegant but decisive British lady, Vicky Bowman, who was once the British Ambassador to Myanmar. Ms. Bowman, has lived in Myanmar for several years,  is fluent in the local language, and worked in the arena of responsible business within the private sector and government for many years.

Prior to the visit, we have seen Korean and India investors in Myanmar, India diplomats, Myanmar government officials, the US embassy staff. Everyone agreed the reform in Myanmar was true and genuine. But they also raised a lot of questions regarding the challenges of the reform, especially the challenges that foreign investors are facing in Myanmar. As graduate students in a policy-oriented school, we are concerned about more than just the problems, but solutions. Vicky Bowman is the one who give us a clue about how to solve the current in Myanmar.

“Myanmar is not an easy place to do business,” Vicky Bowman said so. First, because of the lack of transparency for Myanmar companies, foreign investors find it difficult to find capable and responsible local partners. Second, Myanmar government doesn’t have much experience in dealing with foreign investors, so there is disconnection between the government plan and the investor’s expectation. Third, the civil society in Myanmar hasn’t used to business, their understanding about business is not comprehensive, and so they are, in most cases, suspicious about foreign investors and investment projects. Last, due to the lack of rule of law, even though the new Foreign Investment Law has been passed, there are enforcement problems, especially coming to arbitration, labor protection and taxation issues.

MCRB is working against such backgrounds, as Vicky tells us, “Myanmar Centre for Responsible Business is established for building the bridges between the private sector and the government, between the investors and civil society.” The Centre is working on monitoring the transparency of Myanmar companies, sharing updated information with public and government and providing advises for decision makers. They started from extractive industry, and is planning to move towards other sectors. Vicky and her colleagues also frequently hold and attend events, joint by government, private sectors and civil society, encouraging cooperation among three sides.

Vicky stresses the importance of doing responsible business. She gives an example of a Chinese company, which has invested a lot in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), but the outcomes are not in their favor. Companies like it, who has the wish to improve their company image and their relationship with local community, have little knowledge of how to run with NGOs. Therefore, “we (MCRB) are here to help them understanding what the local community need,” Vicky says. The Centre provides a stage for the investors to engage with the civil society. In terms of the civil society, the Centre provides them with exposures to business through workshops and seminars. Vicky hopes this would help young professionals in NGOs to better know how to effectively represent their community.

During the Q&A part of the talk, Vicky answers several questions about looking forward to the Myanmar reform in 2015. She is very confident that the reform will continue despite of challenges brought by the coming election and constitutional amendment. She believes that Myanmar is a country with huge development potential, but the Myanmar government should quickly build up their capacity. When giving her comments on the requirement of CSR in new Foreign Investment Law, Vicky shows some worries, “it is not correct to let the investors to fill the gap [of providing general social welfare],” and she adds, ”sometimes, the companies should not take the responsibility of government.”

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Day Two: Directorate of Investment and Company Administration (DICA) and Republic of the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (UMFCCI)

Day Two

Directorate of Investment and Company Administration  (DICA) 

Today our group traveled to the Directorate of Investment and Company Administration (DICA), a government entity which oversees investments and joint ventures by foreign companies in Myanmar. The Deputy Director took an hour to sit down with us and explain the investment landscape of Myanmar, the goals of the Myanmar government in terms of attracting investment and protecting local Myanmar peoples’ interests, and the challenges an organization such as DICA faces in an emerging country's early stages of development. She was candid and truthful about the positive changes and current obstacles she and her department encounter daily.

The most important change to foreign investment in Myanmar is the recent change of the Foreign Investment Law, which has made an initiative in attracting further foreign investment and encouraging greater corporate social responsibility by those companies. The new incentives include a longer grace period in the tax exemption law and the ability to create joint ventures with local companies. In addition, the new law uses a new negative approach to identify actions foreign investors cannot take, rather than the previous method indicating actions foreign investors can take. The assumption therefore is that anything not specifically restricted is fair game for foreign investors. In regards to further protecting the local population, the tax exemption law excludes companies associated with poor health and detrimental environmental practices (e.g. tobacco, alcohol, and mining). Finally, the law includes important customs duty exemption for construction of new commercial operations. This tax holiday has a five-year period. Overall, the Foreign Investment Law revisions have created a more attractive environment for foreign investors.

In terms of better labor practices, DICA is enforcing better corporate social responsibility practices that will employ local Myanmar citizens in projects. This includes an incrementally increasing proportion of Myanmar skilled labor over three two-year periods. In addition, investments in technology will lead to training local Myanmar citizens; the government has an increased focus on vocational training. However, many of these requirements are only in effect for companies with contracts after the introduction of the new Foreign Investment Law revisions. Companies operating in Myanmar before these revisions can be grandfathered-in.  These new labor laws encourage skills-transfer, which will have a greater long-term impact on the well being of the Myanmar economy than simple investment in projects.

The growth in foreign investment can easily be seen by the Deputy Director General and all those working within DICA. Before 2011, DICA oversaw less than thirty new permits a year; while today DICA processes about twenty per week. DICA seeks technological assistance from OECD and UNTP. As FDI continues to grow, DICA struggles to continue operations with its limited staff for support. 

~Matthew Florian

Republic of the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (UMFCCI)

Today, our group met with officials from the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (UMFCCI) to discuss international investment in Myanmar and the role of the UMFCCI in facilitating business opportunities. UMFCCI is Myanmar’s largest not-for-profit business federation, and it was founded in 1919. UMFCCI acts as a bridge and voice between the government and private sector, and provides various services to its members.

The UMFCCI has the following objectives:
·         To participate in the implementation of the Four Economic Objectives of the State
·         To accelerate the pace of economic development
·         To safeguard the economy for the State and National people
·         To cooperate with the State in economic and social activities
·         To lead and cooperate with the business associations
·         To act as a bridge between the State and private sector
·         To support for more competitiveness of SMEs and SMIs
·         To lead Myanmar business community into globalized economy
·         To develop commerce, production and services to global standards
·         To act as independent NGO
·         To disseminate information and knowledge in regards to global standards in commerce

UMFCCI is working together with 71 affiliated associations, such as regional and state chambers of commerce and industry. The organization aims to diversify and intensify its activities towards achieving the state’s goal of simultaneously developing a modern industrial sector along with the agricultural sector, in order to achieve rapid development, poverty alleviation, and establish a modern, prosperous, developed nation.

Officials from UMFCCI told our group that Myanmar has a long ways to catch up, given their recent bloody history and subsequent international sanctions. Australia and the European Union have totally lifted sanctions, whereas the United States has suspended sanctions.

The UMFCCI officials are emphasized that education will play a key role in bridging the economic gap between Myanmar and its ASEAN neighbors. In particular, there are plans to ramp up vocational training in Myanmar.

~Margaux Fimbres 

Monday, January 19, 2015

Day One: Daewoo, Burmese Lunch, and TATA

Day One


After enjoying the wonderful breakfast at the Chatrium Hotel in Yangon, we headed off in our gigantic bus to meet Daewoo International Corporation.  Everyone was very excited to enter into our first meeting and a bit anxious to see how these meetings would proceed. 

Daewoo International Corporation is Korea’s largest trading company and a subsidiary of POSCO (Pohang Iron and Steel Company), a multinational steel making company based in Korea. Mr. Si Bo Joo, the executive vice president and managing director of the Myanmar branch, gave a wonderful presentation of their gas production journey in Myanmar also known as ‘The Shwe Project.”  He went on to talk about some of the technical aspects of drilling, production, and transfer into the main pipelines. 

Interestingly, he also discussed how the contract with the Chinese company, SEA Gas Pipeline Corporation receives 80% of the total sales volume of gas, and only 20% goes into the domestic market. From the first gas produced in 2013 of 200 million standard cubic meters per day to 500 MSm3/d in 2014. The share of gas will not increase over time unless they are able to find more sources and increase their current capacity. The off-shore gas is transferred from the west Myanmar to west China through a 792.5 kilometer pipeline.

Mr. Joo also went into detail of Daewoo’s serious intent in their promotion of CSR. Since starting their project in 2000, they have invested 4.2 million USD on socio-economic programs that have mainly been distributed in health and education. He also mentioned they are environmentally conscious and have participated the Mangrove restoration near the coast that also protect the people from cyclones such as Cyclone Nargis in 2008 that devastated Myanmar with approximately 100,000 deaths.

Although mainly rich in gas, Myanmar will play a pivotal role in the oil industry by transferring Middle Eastern oil to China through a oil pipeline paralleled with the gas one. Currently they are going through the Strait of Malacca and will save companies for transportation costs.

As the meeting was concluding, Mr. Joo gifted all of us a beautiful glass paperweight that had a figure of the gas rig in Swe. This was a very informative meeting and a great start to the week, and we headed back to the bus.

Back on the bus, the gigantic bus and Yangon traffic combined did not help our travels. The local infrastructure changes and increase in tourism has made the traffic in Yangon very congested but after arriving at a local Burmese restaurant, we had our choice of many different dishes including prawns, chicken, mutton, and vegetable dishes.  We had our fill and the food was fantastic and definitely worth the wait. 

~Sharon Yoo

Traditional Burmese Lunch

Tata International

After a hearty Burmese lunch, we spent a couple of hours at the Junction Square Shopping Centre, Myanmar's largest mall. The group split off to explore the shops, sample some desserts at the food court, and play arcade games--Margaux and Matt entertained a few local children with their dance moves on the Dance Dance Revolution mat. We left the mall in the late afternoon to head to our next meeting, which was with Sunil Seth, the Myanmar Country Head for Tata International. Mr. Seth provided us with an informative and detailed brief on the state of business, trade, and infrastructure in Myanmar. Mr. Seth has been with the Tata Group for three decades in Asia and in Europe, and he has witnessed the changes taking place in Myanmar since assuming his current role two years ago.

Tata has identified Myanmar as one of three key target markets for investment, along with Indonesia and Vietnam. Myanmar has traditionally been an exporter of agricultural goods, including pulses and rice. In recent years, exports of pulses--mainly to India--have continued, but both the quantity and quality of rice produced has decreased. Tata is involved in the export of pulses, selling branded Burmese pulses at its retail markets in India. Mr. Seth noted that despite the recent downturn in rice production, the country has the potential to modernize production techniques and once again become a competitive rice exporter.

Tata's most significant investment in Myanmar, however, is a coal power plant currently under development in Pathein. The plant, which is expected to produce 1,320 megawatts of power annually, is expected to cost $3 billion, and it represents the largest single Indian investment in the country. The current power infrastructure is inadequate, however, and severe irregularities in pricing are disrupting the market. Tata, along with other Indian companies and Thai companies, are advising the Myanmar government on developing a uniform power purchase agreement, which would standardize power pricing, and Chinese companies are focusing on upgrading and expanding the power grid. In addition to its agricultural and power investments, Tata operates an automobile assembly plant near Mandalay. Tata struggles to compete on price with used Japanese cars, but Tata is better positioned in the market for commercial vehicles.

Mr. Seth has been impressed with the progress made in Myanmar over the last few years. The country has been cut off from the modern management best practices developed and used abroad for the past fifty years, and, as a result, decision-making is still too concentrated at the top of the government hierarchy. Nonetheless, in Mr. Seth's view, the government has been effective in implementing its reforms over the past two years, and the administration has been receptive to input from the private sector. Mr. Seth is optimistic that the rate of progress will continue, and he expects the (currently small) middle class to expand fairly rapidly, paralleled by increased retail and access to consumer goods.

We thanked Mr. Seth for meeting with us and for answering all of our questions, and we headed back to our hotel to unwind after a productive day.

~Udit Banerjea

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Chinese and Indian Investment in Myanmar: SAIS Study trip to Yangon

Dear Readers,

From January 19-25, 2015, the South Asia Studies Program of The Johns Hopkins University Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) will be sponsoring a study trip to Yangon, Myanmar where twelve graduate students will be exploring the topic of Chinese and Indian investment in Myanmar. The trip participants are students in Gregory Knight and Dr. Walter Andersen's Rise of India and China course offered in the Fall of 2014. To learn more about what the students are seeing and experiencing on the study trip stay tuned over the course of the week to the various blog posts from the participants themselves.

Meet the Student Participants!

Udit Banerjea, South Asia Studies, SAIS
Kevin Cottrell, Southeast Asia Studies, SAIS
Xiaoqun Dong, Energy, Resources and the Environment, SAIS
Eleanor Doong, Energy, Resources, and the Environment, SAIS
Yiyi Fan, Southeast Asia Studies, SAIS
Margaux Fimbres, Energy, Resources and Environment, SAIS
Matthew Florian, China Studies, SAIS
Elizabeth Heller, International Development, SAIS
Neeli Shah, Energy, Resources and Environment, SAIS
Emily Tang, China Studies, SAIS
Shrey Verma, South Asia Studies, SAIS
Sharon Yoo, South Asia Studies, SAIS


Rebecca Aman, South Asia Studies Program Manager
Gregory Knight, SAIS Adjunct Faculty

Study Trip Leaders