Myan­mar’s Suu Kyi to visit Bei­jing

State coun­selor likely to be treated like a head of gov­ern­ment on se­cond trip to China, ex­perts say

China Daily (USA) - - FRONT PAGE - By AN BAIJIE in Bei­jing an­bai­jie@chi­nadaily.com.cn Zhang Yaozhong con­trib­uted to this story.

Myan­mar’s Aung San Suu Kyi will take her first trip as state coun­selor out­side the ASEAN re­gion next week when she vis­its Bei­jing, where ex­perts be­lieve she will be re­ceived as a head of gov­ern­ment.

The four-day China visit will be­gin on Wed­nes­day, Thai­land-based mag­a­zine The Ir­rawaddy quoted Zaw Htay, spokesman for the Myan­mar Pres­i­dent’s Of­fice, as say­ing.

This will be Suu Kyi’s se­cond trip to China. The first time, in June last year, she met with Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping as leader of Myan­mar’s Na­tional League for Democ­racy.

In Myan­mar’s gen­eral elec­tion in No­vem­ber, the NLD won an ab­so­lute ma­jor­ity of seats in both houses of par­lia­ment.

China’s ties with Myan­mar, which gained in­de­pen­dence in 1948, have de­vel­oped steadily. Bei­jing said ear­lier that it would not seek to change its pol­icy to­ward the coun­try, no mat­ter who heads its gov­ern­ment.

Suu Kyi will meet with Xi and Pre­mier Li Ke­qiang, ac­cord­ing to Efe, the Span­ish in­ter­na­tional news agency.

Since Suu Kyi is widely re­spected in­ter­na­tion­ally ob­servers said, and her visit to China will at­tract at­ten­tion from all sides about her per­sonal ca­reer and po­lit­i­cal acu­men, as well as about the China-Myan­mar re­la­tion­ship in the new era.

China is likely to treat Suu Kyi with the eti­quette af­forded to a prime min­is­ter, said Jia Duqiang, a se­nior re­searcher of South­east Asian stud­ies at the Chi­nese Academy of So­cial Sciences.

Treat­ing her with such eti­quette is un­der­stand­able, Jia said, be­cause Suu Kyi ranks as the coun­try’s se­cond fig­ure af­ter the pres­i­dent. Ad­di­tion­ally, it is widely ac­knowl­edged that she works as the head of the

The Chi­nese gov­ern­ment will show due re­spect to her, and to her do­mes­tic po­lit­i­cal in­flu­ence.” Jia Duqiang, se­nior re­searcher, China Academy of So­cial Sciences

gov­ern­ment, Jia said.

“The Chi­nese gov­ern­ment will show due re­spect to her, and to her do­mes­tic po­lit­i­cal in­flu­ence,” he added.

Since the new Myan­mar gov­ern­ment was formed in March, Suu Kyi has made two for­eign trips: to Laos in May and to Thai­land in June. She has ac­cepted an in­vi­ta­tion from US Pres­i­dent Barack Obama to visit the US be­fore his pres­i­dency ends.

Jia said the Chi­nese lead­ers’ meet­ing with Suu Kyi will be a mile­stone of China-Myan­mar re­la­tions and lay a foun­da­tion for fu­ture bi­lat­eral co­op­er­a­tion.

The lead­ers also might dis­cuss is­sues in­clud­ing se­cu­rity con­cerns re­gard­ing the two coun­tries’ bor­der area, he said.

Jin Yong, deputy chief of the School of For­eign Stud­ies at Com­mu­ni­ca­tion Uni­ver­sity of China, said he ex­pected Suu Kyi’s China visit to re­sult in stronger eco­nomic ties be­tween the two coun­tries.

Last month, the Myan­mar gov­ern­ment vowed to de­velop agri­cul­ture, in­dus­try and in­fra­struc­ture. China has ex­pe­ri­ence and cap­i­tal in these ar­eas that Myan­mar could use to ben­e­fit its development Jin said.

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