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Myanmar

Summary:

PBF has been engaged in Myanmar since July 2012 where it has financed targeted initiatives to fill gaps and support peace and reform efforts. To date, PBF has supported six projects in Myanmar totalling $7.7 million. Between 2012 and 2013, PBF approved funding for four peacebuilding projects designed to build confidence in the peace process, contribute to security sector reform and promote peaceful coexistence between Myanmar’s diverse ethnic and religious groups. In 2015, PBSO approved a project to support the newly established Centre for Diversity and National Harmony (CDNH), which undertakes early warning work and social research, providing deeper analysis to policy makers to nudge thinking beyond divisive public positions. In October 2015, PBSO approved a project to support the implementation of the Joint Action Plan signed between the Government and the UN Country Task Force to end and prevent the recruitment and use of children by the Tatmadaw, to identify, verify and discharge underage recruits still associated with the Tatmadaw as well as to support their reintegration back into their communities.

Total funding support to date in US$: 7.7 million

Focus of current PBF support:

Project name/ ID One sentence explaining focus Period Budget RUNOs
PBF/IRF-75: Contribution to Myanmar Peace Dividend Projects in Mon and Kayin Stats (Myanmar) The project contributes to the Myamar peacebuilding process by building responsive governance in Mon and Kayin state, strengthening peaceful co-existence in hte conflict-affected communities and engaging women, youth and media as critical stakeholders for peace. The expected results are improved social services in ethnic areas, collaboration between state and non-state actors, mutual trust and empowering women, youth and media in peacebuilding. Nov 2013 – Dec 2015 $1.5m UNICEF, IOM, UNWOMEN, UNDP, UNHCR, UNESCO
PBF/IRF-114: Establishment of the Center for Diversity and National Harmony (CDNH) – Myanmar The project will fund, implement and monitor staff recruitment, procurement and operations in order to establish the Center for Diversity and National Harmony (CDNH), which is crucial to conceptualise, inform and enhance the debate on social violence and its prevention, ensuring a stable and peaceful Myanmar characterized by sustainable development, human rights, rule of law, democracy and collaborative security. Feb 2015 – July 2016 $2.5m UNOPS

PBF/IRF-125 Prevent the recruitment and use of children by armed forces/groups in Myanmar as an entry point for durable peace The project supports the implementation of the Joint Action Plan to end and prevent the recruitment and use of children by the Tatmadaw, to identify, verify and discharge underage recruits still associated with the Tatmadaw as well as support their reintegration back into their communities. Oct 2015 – Mar 2017 $1.5m UNDP, IOL, UNICEF

Overview of PBF support and results:

Myanmar continues to pursue vigorously its peace process with ethnic armed groups as a critical component of national reconciliation and the political transition taking place. The Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement was signed by the Government, the Myanmar Defence forces and several Ethnic Armed Organizations on 15 October 2015. PBF aims to support Government efforts to dedicate resources to this complex process, and use the flexibility of the Fund to support work in ceasefire areas and enhance inclusion.

Initial PBF funding for Myanmar was agreed during a visit of the Secretary-General to Myanmar in May 2012.  In July 2013, Myanmar was declared formally eligible to access PBF funding, paving the way to receive additional resources.   Since late-2012, PBF has approved funding for six peacebuilding projects.

Complementing support from other donors, in particular the European Union, PBF funding helped establish the Myanmar Peace Centre (MPC), an entity that helped pave the way for improved communication between the military and ethnic armed groups in ceasefire areas. Under the new Administration, the MPC will give way to a new institution, the National Reconciliation and Peace Center.

PBF also supported the delivery of peace dividends in the conflict-affected South-Eastern States of Mon and Kayin.  These included assisting with the expansion or rebuilding of social services in ethnic and minority areas, prevention and protection of gender-based violence through empowerment women and girls, and engaging youth and media to promote a culture of inclusion and peaceful resolution of conflicts. Preliminary results from an independent evaluation in early 2016 suggest that the project helped emergent actors in Mon and Kayin States to sustain tangible benefits and build peaceful communities during a time of transition, and that a nascent trust was constructed at a local level through working with both government and non-state actors.

PBF has provided financing to build trust between the military and the international community and take advantage of the agreement to work on the issue of child soldiers. The project, “Effective Implementation of the 1612 Action Plan” was agreed between the Government of Myanmar and the Country Task Force on Monitoring and Reporting and implemented by UNICEF, ILO and UNHCR. Since 2012, a total of 646 children and young persons have been identified, registered and discharged. In August 2015, PBF approved a project to further support the implementation of the the Joint Action Plan. The new project also aims not only to promote the overall protection of children from armed conflict but also to offer an opportunity for confidence building among different groups in Myanmar.

In support of national efforts to address communal tensions in Rakhine State and elsewhere, the Fund approved a new project in 2015, proposed by both the Special Adviser and the UN Resident Coordinator to support the newly established Centre for Diversity and National Harmony (CDNH). PBF support has resulted in nascent nationally-owned efforts to create more space to address communal conflict issues in Myanmar.  CDNH is now undertaking early warning work and social research, providing already deeper analysis to policy makers to nudge thinking beyond divisive public positions. Though in its very early stages, through the activities, parties to the conflict are continuing to meet and are interested in participating in exercises that bridge the conflict divide.

 

Updated July 2016