This country, which was called Burma since the time of British colonial rule in international history, was changed into the name of Myanmar by its authority since the year of 1990. Although most of the countries in the world have accepted the name, still a lot of areas call it Burma, such as Thailand even some domestic provinces in Myanmar. On October 21, 2010, the state name Republic of the Union of Myanmar was officially announced, as well as its new national flag and state seal. The city Yangon, which is used to be the capital, is replaces by Naypyidaw, making it the largest city of the country.
Myanmar, which has a total area of 687,500 square kilometers, is the largest country in mainland Southeast Asia, and the 40th largest in the world. As a member of the ASEAN (the Association of South-East Asian Nations) since 1997, Myanmar is the second biggest country in the Southeast Asia. Though it gave up its turn to hold the ASEAN chair and host the ASEAN Summit in 2006, it is scheduled to chair the forum and host the summit in 2014.
Agriculture is the main industry of the country with over 60% of the whole population engaged in farming. Myanmar produces precious stones such as sapphires, pearl and jade. Rubies are the biggest earner; 90% of the world’s rubies come from the country, whose red stones are prized for their purity and hue. Myanmar has rich natural resources, but it has a slow industrial development, it was even once listed as one of the most undeveloped countries in the world by the United Nations in December 1987.
The government adopted a policy of opening to the outside world in 1989, allowing foreign investment, permitting farmers operating business of agricultural products and individuals doing import and export trade. On May 17th 2012 Derek Mitchell was appointed by American president Barack Obama as the first Special Representative and Policy Coordinator for Myanmar with Rank of Ambassador. This new measure will loosen restriction of investment from American enterprises to Myanmar, which shows a promising economic development in the country.
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