August 19, 2016

Myanmar’s media reform praised at media conference

Union Minister U Ye Htut being interviewed by journalists at media
Union Minister U Ye Htut being interviewed by journalists at media.

The Myanmar government has succeeded in transforming the media sector as part of its democratic reform, said Kavi Chongkittavorn, a media expert at the Southeast Asian Press Alliance, in his opening speech at the 4th Media Development Conference at Chatrium Hotel in Yangon Region yesterday.
The conference was organised under the theme “New Dynamics in Myanmar Media”, with Kavi saying the country’s media have overcome huge challenges and that the government has realised media reform by enabling ethnic minorities to enjoy easy access to news sources over the past four years.
He suggested that local media should enhance their coverage to earn greater respect from the future government and greater editorial freedom.
Information Union Minister U Ye Htut said the government worked together with international organisations to ensure media development in the country from 2012 to 2013. The government’s initiatives for media development included efforts to improve journalistic skills, reinforce journalistic ethics and encourage ethnic diversity in media, he said.
The previous conferences took place in September 2014, with the union minister saying the fourth conference would be held in December with the aim of enabling the incoming government to hear the views and opinions of the international community.
The agenda focused on the emergence of democratic media, a review of the press’s role in the 2015 election, prospects for the expansion of broadcast media, gender inequality in local media and the dynamic surge of social media.
The conference will continue on 11 December at the same venue with an agenda that will include rights to news coverage, the emergence of community-based media, the safety of media personnel, the emerging ethnic media landscape and its challenges and local media development through international support.
The third Media Development Conference took place on 18 and 19 September last year, under the title “Moving toward a Sustainable Media Environment”.


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