U.S. Blacklists State-Owned Myanmar Timber and Pearl Companies
By Mengqi Sun
The U.S. imposed sanctions on two state-owned enterprises in the
timber and pearl industries in Myanmar on Wednesday, as the U.S.
ramps up pressure on the military regime in the country in response
to the military coup there in February, the Treasury Department
The U.S. Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control, which
implements and enforces U.S. economic and trade sanctions,
blacklisted Myanma Timber Enterprise and Myanmar Pearl Enterprise,
alleging the two provide key sources of revenue for the country's
military. The U.S. says the military regime is using violence to
repress pro-democracy protests in the country and is responsible
for lethal attacks against the people of Myanmar.
Efforts to reach the Myanma Timber Enterprise weren't
successful. The Myanmar Pearl Enterprise and Myanmar's embassy in
Washington didn't immediately respond to requests for comment.
"The United States will continue to target specific funding
channels and promote accountability for the coup and related
violence," Antony Blinken, the U.S. secretary of state, said in a
statement. "We will continue to support the people of Burma in
their efforts to reject this coup, and we call on the military
regime to cease violence, release all those unjustly detained, and
restore Burma's path to democracy."
The Treasury said the sanctions aren't directed at the people of
Myanmar, which is also known as Burma. The U.S. has sought to cut
off funds and seize assets of those who directed the Feb. 1
The Treasury said the Myanma Timber Enterprise, a state-owned
enterprise under the country's Ministry of Natural Resources and
Environmental Conservation, is responsible for the production and
export of timber on behalf of the Myanmar military regime.
Myanmar Pearl Enterprise, another state-owned enterprise under
the environment ministry, is responsible for oyster-fishing and
selling pearls through the Myanmar Pearl Event, in addition to
approving licenses in oyster industry-related businesses, according
to the U.S. Treasury.
The sanctions are the latest issued following an executive order
signed by President Biden in February enabling the U.S. to
blacklist the military leaders who directed the takeover, as well
as their family members and business interests.
The sanctions freeze assets held by the companies within U.S.
jurisdictions and prohibit U.S.-based individuals and firms from
doing business with the companies, unless permitted by Treasury's
Write to Mengqi Sun at email@example.com
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
April 21, 2021 17:54 ET (21:54 GMT)
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