CLIMB­ING Ever­est climbers call for new in­sur­ance laws

The Myanmar Times - - Sport - SWAN YE HTUT swanye­htut@mm­times.com

LIFE in­sur­ance from a Myan­mar com­pany just doesn’t go high enough for Ko Win Ko Ko. Along with Ko Pyae Phyo Aung and Ko Nyi Nyi Aung, he con­quered Ever­est last May. But he had to get in­sur­ance from a lo­cal Nepali com­pany first.

The moun­taineer was speak­ing at a cer­e­mony held yes­ter­day in hon­our of the three at the Min­istry of Health and Sports in Nay Pyi Taw, at­tended by Union min­is­ter U Myint Htwe.

“Climbers from more than 90 coun­tries have scaled the world’s high­est peak, prov­ing their strength and their abil­ity to sur­mount the most dif­fi­cult con­di­tions in na­ture. I am proud that Myan­mar has joined those coun­tries,” said the min­is­ter, award­ing the three climbers K1 mil­lion each.

But Ko Win Ko Ko said join­ing those coun­tries was made par­tic­u­larly dif­fi­cult by Myan­mar’s neb­u­lous life in­sur­ance laws.

“Life in­sur­ance in Myan­mar doesn’t cover peo­ple who work abroad, ex­cept for sea­far­ers,” Ko Win Ko Ko told re­porters at the cer­e­mony. “Moun­taineers need cov­er­age to climb Ever­est, so we bought in­sur­ance in Nepal and be­came mem­bers of Global Res­cue. It would be bet­ter if ath­letes like us were el­i­gi­ble to take out life in­sur­ance lo­cally.”

The climber also sug­gested that ex­pen­sive moun­taineer­ing equip­ment, which was mostly im­ported, should be avail­able at re­duced rates of tax.

Ko Win Ko Ko, Ko Pyae Phyo Aung and Ko Nyi Nyi Aung, mem­bers of the Tech­ni­cal Climb­ing Club of Myan­mar, reached the 29,000-foot (8848-me­tre) sum­mit of Mt Ever­est on May 19.

– Trans­la­tion by Zar Zar Soe

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