Myanmar to liberalize media publication control phase by phase

08:16, June 09, 2011      

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Myanmar will liberalize media publication control phase by phase and will initially grant some private journals and magazines for publication without prior official scrutiny as previously done, an information ministry official told a press conference in Yangon Wednesday.

In the past, all publications had to undergo scrutiny with the Press Scrutiny and Registration Board under the Information Ministry before being allowed for publication.

Beginning Friday, five genres of the media publications to be so granted as the first phase go to 82 journals and 96 magazines relating to health, technology, arts and culture, sports and children, said U Ye Tint, Managing Director of the Printing and Publication Enterprise.

U Ye Tint underlined that it is the first ever step towards liberalization of media publication in line with the new state constitution and the guidance of President U Thein Sein issued after a new government was installed.

Formalities for publication of other genres of print media will so far remain the same as before, he maintained, but adding that if the first phase runs successful, more liberalization will follow.

At the press conference, U Tint Swe, who is Deputy Director- General of the Department of Public Relations, urged the publishers to observe the 12-point new guideline laid down by the ministry replacing the old one.

According to the ministry, there are about 200 journals and over 200 magazines being published in Myanmar periodically, while the number of publishers now stands as nearly 7,000.

Myanmar's Ministry of Information is administrating various types of media, information and publication.

In the print media sector, four state newspapers -- Myanma Alin, the Mirror, New Light of Myanmar and Myawaddy are also being published daily.

Source: Xinhua
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