The Ministry of Education, Ministry of Transport and Communication and Ministry of Ethnic Affairs held a joint press conference on the three ministries’ second year in office performance at the Ministry of Information yesterday afternoon.
At the press conference Union Minister Dr. Myo Thein Gyi said 313 high schools, 1,612 middle schools , 840 primary schools, 173 sub high schools, 735 sub middle schools , 968 post primary schools and 459 sub primary schools totaling 5,100 schools were upgraded in academic year 2017-2018.
As more emphasis was placed toward upgrading middle and high schools starting from June 2017, for the first time, academic year 2017-2018 saw a total high school level students (Grade 10 and Grade 11) exceeding a million.
Through the cooperation between Ministry of Education and Ministry of Ethnic Affairs, starting from December 2017 a total of 5,161 local ethnic nationals with a minimum education of passing Grade 10 were appointed as Teaching Assistants to teach ethnic national languages and other subjects under a daily rate system paid by month.
To change the curriculum, starting from 2016 April, JICA provided technical assistance for basic education primary level while ADB (Asian Development Bank) and EU (European Union) provides technical assistance to prepare middle and high school level text books and teachers guide. KG+12 system was started in academic year 2016-2017 and is expected to be completed in academic year 2022-2023.
Education assessments were conducted in July, October, December and February matriculation examination results were being posted in the Ministry of Education website.
As for other reforms, starting from April 2016 full salary payment for teachers, issuing of national identification cards for students reaching 10 years of age in cooperation with Ministry of Labour, Immigration and Population and education supports for all handicap students, assigning the school construction works to state/region governments in academic year 2016-2017 and assigning the school construction works to Ministry of Construction in education year 2017-2018 were conducted.
Starting from April 2016 and throughout the whole year, basic reading and writing skill trainings were conducted in cooperation with university students, teachers and local volunteers.
From 2016 to March 2018, a total of 37,386 elders were able to learn basic reading and writing skills through 3,765 teaching circles taught by 4,295.
In the technical and vocational sector, a total of 63 schools consisting of three government technical college, 22 government technical science schools, 34 government technical high schools, three vocational (ELPS/SMVTI/NVTI) schools were in existence in 2017-2018.
During the two-year period, short term courses were conducted in government technical colleges, government technical science schools and government technical high schools enabling to teach a total of 62,257 students.
In 2017-2018, there were 49 arts/science universities, degree colleges and colleges, 60 technical computer universities and 25 education college, totaling 134 were providing courses.
In the higher education sector reform, in the past, matriculation graduates were directly applying to university entrance assessment group in Yangon. Starting from those who passed the matriculation examination in 2017, arrangements were made to apply for university entrance directly to 17 universities explained the Union Minister.
Ministry of Transport and Communications second one-year performance press conference
Permanent Secretary U Win Khant said that, pertaining to air transportation, around 10 million passengers used airlines in 2017. Myanmar currently has three international airports and thirty-three domestic airports.
The Nyaung-U Airport in Mandalay Region will be upgraded into the first green airport in Southeast Asia using a grant from JICA and the first airport for Chin State will be constructed in Falam Township by Fiscal Year 2020-2021.
Airlines in Myanmar generated US$ 104 million for Fiscal Year 2017-2018 and surveillance radars were installed in Yangon, Mandalay, and Nay Pyi Taw airports for increased safety.
Concerning water transportation, there are nine ports along Myanmar’s coastline and Yangon Port handles 90 per cent of the entire countries sea trade. Within two years 6 additional jetties were constructed throughout the country bringing the total number up to 39. Myanmar Port Authority also reports handling 6 million more tons of cargo than the previous year.
The Directorate of Water Resources and Improvement of River Systems has completed 13 water route improvement projects and 23 projects to protect from coastal erosion by constructing retaining walls and dykes measuring a total of 20,905 feet in Fiscal Year 2017-2018. Myanma Shipyards via Myanma Shipyards-Dong A Joint Venture Co. Ltd. has constructed 21 new water vessels and repaired 54 old water vessels.
Myanma Railways has transported 46.489 million passengers and 1.744 million tons of cargo in Fiscal year 2017-2018.
Construction of the Myitnge Passenger Car Factory was completed in March 2018 and has started to build twenty-one passenger cars with airbags to be completed by 2018-2019. The Nay Pyi Taw locomotive factory was also completed in March with a loan of US$ 47.9156 million from China. The factory is set to build ten 2,000 horsepower locomotives by March 2019.
The Yangon-Mandalay railway upgrade project (2017-2023) has been allotted Japanese Yen 20 billion for phase one and Japanese Yen 25 billion for phase two. Tenders for CP-101, CP-102, CP-103 for repairing the Yangon-Taungoo railway sections are completed. Installation of signals at Yangon Central Railway Station is 90 per cent complete.
The Road Transport Administration Department has registered 1.3 million motor vehicles as of March 2018, bringing the total number to 6.8 million registered motor vehicles. The department also increased the period for motor vehicle licenses to two years. They adopted an online booking system in 27 December 2017 to cut down on waiting time for license renewals and converted driver’s licenses into smart cards. The Department of Post and Telecommunications reports that mobile users in Myanmar have reached 110.43 per cent and mobile networks throughout Myanmar are comprised of MPT (90.01 per cent), Telenor (89.6 per cent), and Ooredoo (90.5 per cent). Myanma Post has 83 next-day delivery offices, 120 same-day delivery offices, international express delivery to 102 countries, 41 online shopping delivery offices, 178 EMS international delivery offices, 136 CB Bank delivery offices, 334 My Kyat offices, and 78 OK Dollar offices.
The Department of Meteorology and Hydrology has installed three weather radars from Japan and a total of 50 weather monitoring devices in state and region offices by 2017. In collaboration with Singapore’s Nanyan Technological College has installed 29 seismographs in Bago, Sagaing, Mandalay, Magway, Shan and Rakhine State. In collaboration with the Indian Government, eight earthquake detection centers were opened in Taunggyi, Katar and Nyaung-U Townships with future plans for new centers underway in Taungoo, Kanbalu, Thibaw, Gwa, and Dawei.
Next, Ministry of Ethnic Affairs Director General U Hla Maw Oo explained about maintaining and raising the literature and culture of ethnic nationals, strengthening the union spirit by protecting the rights of ethnic nationals and aims toward socio-economic development of ethnic nationals.
Policies on education, health, economy and road communication for ethnic nationals were set and implemented.
The aim is unity among ethnic nationals, strengthening union spirit through mutual respect and assistance, working toward acquiring all ethnic national rights prescribed by the law, maintaining and preserving the language, literature, history, arts, culture and traditions of ethnic nationals, creating good neighborhood to retain the character of ethnic nationals, and developing and raising the socio-economic lives consisting of education, health, economy and road communication in the region of the ethnic nationals.
To maintain and preserve the ethnic national languages 5,161 Technical Assistant to teach ethnic nationals in their own languages were appointed in states/regions and Nay Pyi Taw.
Ministry of Education was coordinated to conduct ethnic national literature and culture courses in schools during summer holiday.
Law protecting the ethnic right was translated and distributed in 44 ethnic national languages.
Coordination was done with relevant ministries on regional development matters submitted to the ministry. Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation was coordinated to install solar panels for electrical power in about 30 villages in Yangon Region and Ayeyawady Region.
Upgrading of schools in Rakhine State, Kyauktaw Township, Kyeinchaung Village and Taninthayi Region, Kyaung Taung village were conducted in coordination with Ministry of Education while constructing an extension building to Khaya Atwin Ywa in Kayin State, Hpa-an Township was also coordinated with Ministry of Education.
As future works, construction of new buildings for office of the director will be constructed in fiscal year 2018-2019, employment of additional staffs, arranging to make documentaries of near extinct ethnic nationals, conducting research works in cooperation with other entities and posting of an official ministry’s website will be conducted said U Hla Maw Oo.
Local and international media personnel then clarify and raised questions about the ministries with the relevant officials.—Han Hmway, Lin Naing (MNA)