12 Feb '12, 5am

Myanmar MPs tackle 1st budget in decades

Myanmar MPs tackle 1st budget in decades

NAYPYIDAW: Myanmar's fledgling parliament is slaving over its first budget, a daunting task for the inexperienced body in a country where the army has long been used to dipping into state coffers at will. It has been almost a year since Myanmar, after decades of military rule, embarked on a political transition with a new nominally civilian government. For the novice lawmakers in the nation's twin-chamber parliament -- dominated by soldiers and former military personnel -- that means once impenetrable dossiers are now open to fierce debate. "We have a broad framework but it is very complex," said Aung Tun Thet, an adviser to the United Nations in Yangon, referring to the draft budget prepared by President Thein Sein's government in December. During the long era of successive military rule, the budget was prepared by the government alone. "There was no assessment, no discus...

Full article: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/afp_asiapacific/vi...

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