Japan’s prime minister Shinzo Abe on Tuesday pledge up to 117 billion yen ($1.03 billion) of development aid to Myanmar in a meeting in Manila with government leader Aung San Suu Kyi.
The package of low-interest loans will be used to fund projects including infrastructure and small company financing meant to help improve rural incomes, Japan’s ministry of foreign affairs said in a release.
The aid pledge comes as Myanmar comes under intense criticism from human rights groups, the United Nations and other countries for a counter-insurgency operation that has sparked an exodus of more than 600,000 Rohingya Muslims to Bangladesh since August.
China and the United States also compete for influence in Myanmar.
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