Aug 22, 2012

Myanmar totally liberalizes domestic media publication control

Myanmar announced total liberalization of domestic media publication control Monday, cancelling prior official scrutiny as previously done, according to the website of the Information Ministry.

The total media liberalization marked a significant move as part of the new government's reform measures after its installation on March 30, 2011.

Monday's media liberalization announcement under the fifth phase covers 86 journals, 55 magazines, books, calendars, post cards, formal messages, manuscripts of music and songs, and embassy publications, the website said.

Deputy Director-General of Department of Public Relations of the Information Ministry U Tint Swe urged local media circle at a meeting with the ministry here Monday to observe a 16-point new guideline in the present censor-less publication laid down by the ministry relating to political, economic, social and miscellaneous sectors.

According to the guideline, press media are to keep away from writing news and articles or publishing photos that tantamount to encroaching the three main national causes, criticizing in a destructive manner the government's policy and containing facts that spoil the international friendship, saying that the writing on some sensitive issues be based on strong sources.

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

Beginning June, 2011, the authorities had been undertaking media reform measures phase by phase and the present phase marks the fifth phase.

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

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

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

Source: Xinhua