Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management Christos Stylianides is in Myanmar/Burma from 12-14 May for an official visit. He will meet with government officials and assess the humanitarian situation on the ground.
Arriving in the country today he announced new EU humanitarian assistance to the country and the region.
"The European Union has not forgotten Myanmar/Burma. This is why we have mobilised over €12 million for direct humanitarian assistance and disaster risk reduction activities in the country. Our new funding will help deliver life-saving aid to the most vulnerable, and it will make communities stronger in the face of natural disasters. Humanitarian organisations need full access to all affected communities so that help can reach those who need it the most," said Commissioner Stylianides.
This new funding is part of a bigger package for south and east Asia, and the Pacific region amounting to over €27 million. During his mission, the Commissioner will meet with Union Ministers in Nay Pyi Taw before visiting projects financed by EU humanitarian aid in Northern Rakhine State.
Myanmar/Burma has experienced internal conflicts for more than six decades, involving fighting between ethnic groups and the army, which has led to the displacement of hundreds of thousands of people both internally and to neighbouring countries.
In Rakhine State, an estimated 800 000 Rohingya people are deprived of their basic rights, and restrictions of movement seriously impact their livelihood and access to basic services. Both in the Rakhine and Kachin States, humanitarian access remains a problem.
Myanmar/Burma is also highly exposed to natural hazards, such as cyclones, floods and earthquakes. In 2015, heavy monsoon rains and Cyclone Komen triggered the largest floods in the country’s history, affecting more than 20 million people, including 1.6 million who were displaced.
Since 1994, the European Commission has provided €229 million in humanitarian aid to Myanmar/Burma. €145 million has been allocated in relief assistance for victims of conflict, communal violence and epidemics, while €84 million has reached victims of natural disasters and to support disaster risk reduction and preparedness programs in the country. EU aid is channelled impartially to the affected populations, regardless of their race, ethnic group, religion, gender, age, nationality or political affiliation.