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Business With Asia Mag on Burma
Business in Asia, The South Pacific Review
Aug-Dec 96 Issue
published by Commonwealth Communications Ltd.
Tel 44 171 937 8177
Fax 44 171 376 1420
To date, this magazine has done its best to promote trade between Western
companies and the nations in the Asia Pacific region which it reviews.
But when we came to look at Burma, the anti-democratic character of that
country's regime, and its human rights record, were just too much to
stomach. The junta ignored a landslide election defeat in 1988 (sic),
they still refuse to talk to the leader of the party which won, they lock
up their opponents, and they extract forced labor from many ordinary
citizens - including children. Almost the only argument that can be
advanced in favour of doing business with the junta is that they are very
firmly in power. But the risks of doing so, given growing talk among
Western governments of applying sanctions, must weigh heavily in the minds
of even the most pragmatic.
The rest of this issue of the magazine is in our more usual optimistic
tone. We applaud Western companies seeking to expand trade with Asia -
none more so than those of Australia, whose commitment to the region
continues to set a fine example.
This issue has 14 pages on Burma, and a 7 page interview with John Imle,
President of Unocal.