Myanmar’s growing taste for wheat launches new journeys

When the bulk carrier New Journey was put to sea in January 2015, Myanmar was in the depths of civil war. Clashes between the Myanmar Army and Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army killed more than 200 people in the early months of 2015, and displaced over 50,000 civilians. The South Asian country hadn’t held an openly contested election in nearly thirty years. Four years later, on May 9, 2019, the 177-meter-long, 36,000 deadweight tonne ship arrived at a very different Myanmar. The New Journey docked at Yangon’s newly built Thilawa International Bulk Terminal – Myanmar’s first and only terminal capable of offloading bulk commodities – after nearly a month traversing the Pacific. The ship discharged almost 22,000 mt of US-sourced dark northern spring wheat, worth more than $6,900,000. It was the first seaborne bulk shipment of US-sourced wheat in Myanmar’s history. Myanmar’s appetite for wheat is expanding at a rapid pace, and the country is becoming more integrated in global trade and investment more broadly. But ties with the West have been strained by a series of political and humanitarian crises. What does the future hold for this small South Asian nation? According to the USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service, the… continue reading

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Source: CTRM Center

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