Capital of Myanmar BurmaThe capital of Myanmar Burma
What is the capital of Myanmar? Nyapidaw or Yangon?
The capital of Burma, also known as Myanmar, is Naypyidaw (officially Nay Pyi Taw and Naypyitaw; formerly known as Kyetpyay, Pyinmana or Kyatpyay, Pyinmana). The Yangon (also known as Rangoon, literally: "End of Strife") is a former capital of Burma (Myanmar) and the capital of the Yangon region. With over five million inhabitants, Yangon is the biggest town in the state and the most important trading center, although the army regime moved the capital formally to Naypyidaw in March 2006.
Naypyidaw (not Nyapidaw) is the country's capital, but almost all Burmese people still consider Yangon to be Burma's capital. Nay Pyi Taw is officialy a capital, but Yangon is a bigger, more populous and more comercial town.
Myanmar's insistent capital Naypyidaw
Naypyidaw is a hidden town. She became Myanmar's capital a decade ago after the administration chose to move the capital of Yangon (also known as Rangoon) with minimum declaration. Roads are sparse, with only a few people strolling or biking through the remote capital during the course of the year.
Construction of Naypyidaw began in 2002 and the site was selected in the midst of a forest that has not been inhabited for more than 2,000 years. Though some of the administration staff relocated to the new capital in early 2005, many staff were forced to leave their homes due to a shortage of school and other facilities.
In spite of the apartments allocated by the goverment, many of the inhabitants still reside in shelters. In spite of the fact that the Chinese authorities have provided almost 5 hectares of property for overseas ambassadors and the seat of UN operations, so far only the Bangladesh consulate has relocated to Naypyidaw.
Nobody is living in Burma's new multi-million-pound capital
Wellcome to Burma's capital, Naypyidaw. Situated in the heart of the capital of the twenty-first world war, this recently established man-made homage to the fame of the Burmese junta has all the characteristics of a twenty-first-great capital: a series of high-rise buildings, magnificent monuments and eight by eight alleys of unspoilt byways. Only one thing distinguishes this capital from all other capitals: nobody seems to be living in it.
There is nothing," asked the owners of our hotel when we talked about the opportunity to visit Naypyidaw. A few hour later, he strolled through the kilometre-long, abandoned highway that circled the sprawling city, and the empty and bewildered look on his face seemed entirely justifiable. At 6 November 2005 at 6:37 a.m., Burma's capital was relocated from the countrys historic, economical and culture centre, Yangon, to a sparse area 320 leagues inland.
Burma's then austere leader, Than Shwe, had been pointed out by his high-ranking astrologer squad that this was the most convenient period for the post-transition. Naypyidaw, on the other side, is located in the middle of the land and resembles a huge shelter, constructed to protect against amphibian invasion, all conceived in the spirit of a totallyitarian emperor.
As Than Shwe considered himself a re-incarnation of an old Myanmarese King (King Kyansittha from the eleventh to be precise ), this accounts for a great deal of his domination of the area. They also explain why the capital is called Naypyidaw, which can be interpreted as the "residence of kings". At one of the dispassionate luxurious lobbies that dominated the countryside, we were rather handled like international ambassadors than backpack tourists.
Naypyidaw was Than Shwe's idea to make it a worldwide touristic hot spot, but unfortunately it hasn't quite succeeded for the Robespierre of world travellers. There are a few half-baked or empty buildings, and the only salvation is the big parliamentary house, only it's locked and you can't get near enough to take a snap.
The majority of the houses have a kind of neoclassical style that reminded me a little of Hitler's ambition for a futurist Berlin - not really a style you want to take off for a million-dollar constructionject. While we are wandering around the town, everything we see feels more and more like a miserable success.
With such luxury accommodation, a perfectly good highway and a total absence of people, you almost forgot that you are in Burma. Then a poorly-paying laborer who works over a flowerbed asks you for a soda from your soda, and you realize you're not really in Burma - you're running through the imagination of an unreasonable mad mega.
What is the true drama of this is that the country is costing the country's population. The Irrawaddy, a published by Burma, estimates building at £26 billion, but the longer the period of time it takes to develop, the more this number will rise. But instead of addressing this issue, the goverment is continuing to invest in its new capital.
Perhaps more tragically, the fact is that the Chinese authorities have lent millions of US dollar to fund the scheme, mainly from the central bank, which means that the debts will burden the coming generation of the Myanmar population. However, it is no big deal when you consider how much the junta ignores the Myanmar population.
For example, in 2008, when Cyclone Nagris struck 130,000 dead and made two to three million displaced, the country's authorities stopped most of the world's human assistance by refusing to grant a visa. While Than Shwe resigned unexpectedly in 2011, the army still dominates as it is now handed over to another general, Thein Sein.
One thing is clear, though: construction work is continuing seriously in Naypyidaw.