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Myanmar Tourist Office Should You Go To Burma?
Since the democratic leader's liberation, there has been a weakening attitude towards Burma's people, Steve Meacham states. Are you supposed to go to Burma? Isn' t it ethical for a tourist to pay when he visits a land ruled by a dictatorial army with an alarming track record in terms of people? This is the predicament facing travelers since the 1990 election, won by the National League and overthrown by the army jungle - leading to the detention of the League's flagship Aung San Suu Kyi.
The Nobel Peace Prize laureate loosened her attitude towards international tourists with her protracted liberation on 13 November last year. Suu Kyi did not accept it, but seemed to support the arrivals of international guests, unless they inflated the budgets of the governing general. According to Zetty Brake, co-ordinator of the Sydney-based group of protesters campaigning in Sydney, Burma Australia:
During the 15-year boycotts, Peregrine Adventures and Gecko's Adventures conducted trips to Burma. Peregrine's Asian destinations executive Stuart Lyall says Suu Kyi's shift of mind last year resulted in a 25 percent rise in Burma's global population. "We can' t help it, but we cannot help avoiding the 5% value added or the 2% exchange rate."
Badyari is the managing director of World Expeditions, the other large Australia tour organiser currently bringing visitors to Burma (at least one other Australia organiser is due to update the itineraries soon). World Expeditions has always employed "an outstanding Burmese partner" to "ensure that the money flows to Burma are in the right hands".
"We' re not saying that the tourist industry will make things different for the Burmese nation overnight," she says. Smart Traveller, the website of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, recommends that Australians take care and be cautious. The Lonely Planet has a link to a section on the ethical aspects of travel to Burma.
The Burma Australia is now accepting the NLD's involvement of part of the tourist industry. "Travelling as an individual or in small groups," says Brake.