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Denmark forgives Myanmar debt

Debt worth 295 million kroner is cancelled in recognition of Myanmar's steps toward democracy


A nearly 300 million kroner handshake: Development minister Rasmus Helveg Petersen (R) formally cancelled the debt during a meeting with Myanmar president Thein Sein yesterday (Photo: Scanpix)

January 10, 2014
12:13

by PS


Denmark officially forgave 295 million kroner of debt from Myanmar at a meeting yesterday between the country's president, Thein Sein, and Development Minister Rasmus Helveg Petersen (R).

“Denmark is sending an important message to the Myanmar population – that we support the country’s positive development,” Petersen said, referring to the tentative steps toward democracy that the Myanmar regime was taking.

“When we forgive debt, it opens up resources that can be invested in a population’s health, schools and roads, which they are in desperate need of,” Petersen added.

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Perfect timing
According to the Foreign Ministry, the majority of the forgiven debt are 30-year-old government loans that were used to finance the purchase of Danish-built ships for fishery surveillance.

“The timing is perfect. Myanmar should no longer be weighed down by old debt while they continue their path toward development and political reforms that will benefit the poor population," Petersen said. "The debt cancellation also does not mean that we have less money available to support Myanmar and other poor countries."



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