Myanmar and Switzerland held the first round of economic dialogue in Nay Pyi Taw, with Switzerland pledging to support Myanmar's sustainable economic development, state media reported Wednesday.
The economic dialogue took place between Myanmar delegation, led by Minister of National Planning and Economic Development Dr. Kan Zaw and visiting Swiss delegation, headed by Secretary of State of Economic Affairs Marie Gabrielle Ineichen Fleisch.
Kan Zaw said the dialogue aimed to set potential areas in promoting economic cooperation between the two countries under a memorandum of understanding on sectors of economy, investment, labor and trade, said the New Light of Myanmar.
The two sides also focused on grant of work permit, marketing plan, smooth commodity flow, investment and trade framework, procurement, intellectual property rights, infrastructure, tourist, banking system, labor rights, social accountability and sustainable economic development, it added.
The first round of economic dialogue between Myanmar and the Western European country came days after the European Union- Myanmar Task Force first met in Nay Pyi Taw with both sides vowing to build strong economic partnership and voicing commitment to push reform in Myanmar.
In November 2012, Swiss Minister of Foreign Affairs and Federal Councillor Didier Burkhalter visited Myanmar. During his visit, Switzerland opened its embassy in Yangon.
Switzerland was committed then to providing humanitarian aid worth about 8 million U.S. dollars to Myanmar and the amount will be raised to 20 million dollars in the coming year, saying that in late 2013-2016, the aid will be increased to 35 million dollars.
Switzerland was among the five European countries which Myanmar opposition leader and parliamentarian Aung San Suu Kyi made a historic visit to in June 2012 for seeking political and economic support to back democratic transition in her country.
Switzerland, along with Canada and Australia, are among the earliest countries to have lifted all sanctions on Myanmar in May 2012 with the exception of an embargo on arms to show support for the country's sweeping reforms since early that year.