YANGON, Myanmar – Myanmar will allow private daily newspapers starting in April for the first time since 1964, in the latest step toward allowing freedom of expression in the long-repressed nation.
The Information Ministry announced on its website Friday that any Myanmar national wishing to publish a daily newspaper will be able to submit an application in February. New papers will be allowed to begin printing April 1 in any language, it said.
The move was an expected part of new press freedoms introduced in the former military dictatorship as part of reforms President Thein Sein has introduced since taking office last year.
Private dailies were once vibrant in the former British colony, previously known as Burma, but forced to close when late dictator Ne Win nationalized all private businesses in 1964.