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Wired News on June 8, 1995

Attn: Burma Newsreaders
Re: Wired News on June 8, 1995

Singapore, Burma agree to boost trade ties
(Updates with signing of economic agreement) 

By Kim Coghill 

    SINGAPORE, June 8 (Reuter) - Singapore and Burma on Thursday agreed to
boost trade and economic ties at the beginning of a four-day visit by Burma's
top military leaders and ministers. 

    The two countries signed a bilateral economic agreement to heighten
cooperation starting with tourism and agri-business. 

    The agreement also promotes bilateral trade growth through simplifying
procedures and cooperation in shipping and ancillary maritime services, the
Singapore Ministry of Trade and Industry said in a written statement. 

    The two countries agreed to exchange advisors and technical experts to
train Burmese personnel. 

    The ceremonial signing at the presidential palace was witnessed by top
officials including Singapore Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong and Burma Prime
Minister Than Shwe. 

    Than is also senior general and chairman of the State Law and Order
Restoration Council (SLORC). 

    Singapore is one of the staunchest advocates of integrating Burma into
the region despite charges of human-rights abuses. 

    Goh visited Burma last year to discuss opening up its economy and
encouraging foreign investment. He was only the second head of government to
visit Burma since its military rulers crushed pro-democracy protests in 1988.

    Earlier this week, Singapore Technologies Industrial Corporation said it
had signed a memorandum of understanding to build a S$500 million ($360
million) international airport in Mandalay. 

    The deal, which could open up further opportunities for tourism from
Singapore, was the latest in a series of tie-ups between Burmese and
Singapore businesses fuelled by Burma's desire to develop a more
market-oriented economy and Singapore's aim of encouraging more local
companies to expand overseas. 

    Singapore has identified Burma, China, Indochina and India as potential
investment areas to develop an ``external economy.'' 

    Singapore government figures show trade with Burma amounted to S$720
million ($518 million) in 1993, up from S$603 million ($434 million) in 1992.
Singapore's imports from Burma include seafood, wood and crude rubber while
exports include tobacco, petroleum products and cars. 

    Than Shwe and his delegation arrived in Singapore from Indonesia, where
they agreed with Jakarta to boost economic and trade relations. Rangoon also
asked Indonesia for help in developing its natural gas resources. 

    The trip marks Than Shwe's first visits to members of the Association of
Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), which also includes Brunei, Malaysia,
Thailand, and the Philippines, since becoming chairman of SLORC in 1992. 

    In addition to talks on economic cooperation in both countries, Than Shwe
was also expected to discuss the prospect of Burma's participation in ASEAN
activities, the Myanmar (Burma) News Agency said. 

Transmitted: 95-06-08 10:19:46 EDT

U.S. presses bid to extradite former Thai lawmaker

      BANGKOK, Thailand (Reuter) - The United States Wednesday pressed it
desire to extradite a former Thai member of parliament indicted in the United
States on drug-trafficking charges. 

    Robert Gelbard, an assistant U.S. secretary of state, told a news
conference Washington was monitoring Thai extradition proceedings. 

    ``The United States is following closely the judicial process involving
our request that Thailand extradite former member of parliament Thanong
Siriprichapong to stand trial in the state of California,'' Gelbard said. 

    ``We hope that he ... can be sent to the United States to face justice
under our bilateral extradition treaty,'' said Gelbard, the assistant
secretary of state for international narcotics and law enforcement affairs. 

    Thanong, a former member of the main opposition Chart Thai Party,
resigned from parliament in May last year after the United States disclosed
details of a previously secret 1991 indictment. 

    Documents from a California court allege Thanong was involved in
smuggling more than 45 tons of marijuana to the United Sates between 1977 and
1987, earning him more than $10 million. 

    Thailand's public prosecutor is seeking to extradite him to the United
States on the trafficking charges, which Thanong denies. 

    Gelbard said the United States was also hoping to extradite 10 alleged
drug smugglers, allegedly linked to Burmese opium warlord Khun Sa, who were
arrested by Thai police last year. 

    The 10, who the United States says are senior members in Khun Sa's
heroin-trafficking network, are facing extradition hearings. U.S. federal
authorities have indicted them for alleged narcotics trafficking. 

    ``We hope they can be extradicted to stand trial in the United States
very soon,'' Gelbard said. 

    He said the United States had an excellent working relationship with
Thailand in narcotics control and the cooperation had improved considerably
over the past year. 

    Gelbard is on a tour of the region, which will include visits to
Cambodia, Vietnam and Hong Kong. He visited Laos before coming to Thailand. 

Transmitted: 95-06-07 10:51:24 EDT

Southwall Technologies Enters Manufacturing and Distribution Joint Venture in

    PALO ALTO, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--June 8, 1995--Southwall  Technologies
Inc. (NASDAQ Symbol: SWTX) today announced it has  entered a joint venture,
SGT Asia Pacific PTE Ltd., with three  Singaporean firms to manufacture and
distribute Southwall's high  performance Heat Mirror and California Series
glass products to  selected Pacific Rim markets. 

   Southwall's three partners in the joint venture are ESMACO PTE  Ltd.,
Enctech PTE Ltd. -- both subsidiaries of DBS Land, a leading  Southeast Asian
property developer -- and Singapore Insulating Glass  PTE Ltd. 

   Southwall will supply the joint venture with its proprietary
 heat-reflecting thin films that will be incorporated into finished
 double-glazed windows and laminated glass at the 44,000 square foot
 Singapore Insulating Glass manufacturing facility in Singapore. 

   ESMACO and Enctech will hold a 51% interest in the newly formed  company,
Singapore Insulating Glass will hold 34%, and Southwall  Technologies will
hold 15%.  Southwall received its equity stake in  the venture through a
conversion of debt owed the company by  Singapore Insulating Glass.  The
joint venture will have exclusive  manufacturing and distribution rights for
Singapore, Malaysia,  Indonesia, Brunei, the Philippines, Vietnam, Cambodia,
Myanmar and  Papua New Guinea, and non-exclusive manufacturing and
distribution  rights in China. 

   "This joint venture is a very positive step for Southwall," said  Martin
Schwartz, president and chief executive officer.  "Not only  are we
partnering with one of the region's major builders and users  of high
performance glazing products, we are also strengthening our  overall presence
in one of the world's most dynamic markets." 

   Southwall Technologies Inc. designs and produces thin film  coatings that
selectively absorb, reflect or transmit certain types  of electromagnetic
radiation.  Southwall products are sold into the  architectural, automotive,
electronics and aerospace markets. -0- 
   Note to Editors:  Heat Mirror and California Series are  registered
trademarks of Southwall Technologies Inc.  


Southwall Technologies, Palo Alto 
Martin M. Schwartz, Alfred V. Larrenaga, 415/962-9111

Transmitted: 95-06-08 11:46:55 EDT