The Obama administration on Friday eased sanctions on four major Myanmar banks, allowing transactions with them and their access to American financial system. The Department of Treasury issued a general license to Myanma Economic Bank, Myanma Investment and Commercial Bank, Asia Green Development Bank and Ayeyarwady Bank, under which most transactions with American citizens and entities are authorized, including opening and maintaining accounts.
"This action will give U.S. companies and non-governmental organizations greater access to some of the largest Burmese banks and allow these financial entities to access the U.S. financial system," the department said in a statement.
"Increased access to Burma's banking system for our companies and non-governmental organizations will help to facilitate Burma's continued social and economic development, serve as a model for responsible investment, and help to provide a better future for the Burmese people," said David Cohen, the Treasury's under secretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, using the former name of the Southeast Asian nation.
Washington restored diplomatic relations with Myanmar and ended sanctions on investment there in July 2012, in response to the advances made in the country's reform efforts initiated by President U Thein Sein after he took office in March 2011.