Myanmar’s digital economy comes to a halt as junta blocks connections

The post-coup chaos in Myanmar has an increasingly adverse effect on the country’s nascent digital economy as the junta has resorted to block Internet connections in an unpredictable way.

For instance, the entire mobile Internet was blocked on March 15 after the so far bloodiest crackdown on protesters.

The country is experiencing recurring nightly Internet blackouts since February 15 after the military decided to impose an Internet shutdown from 1am to 9am across the country.

As a result, the country’s Internet economy has essentially come to a halt amid recurring connectivity issues. Large e-commerce companies including Singapore-based Grab and food delivery platform Foodpanda on March 15 suspended their services indefinitely.

Popular social media platforms getting blocked

The regime has also banned access to websites, including popular social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp and Instagram. The services remain banned in Myanmar “until further notice,” according to a statement issued by Norwegian telecom firm Telenor last month.

Telenor was the first foreign company to enter the Myanmar market after the country’s opening and began operations in 2014 alongside Qatar’s Ooredoo. Both companies pledged billions of US dollar of investments in telecom infrastructure, which are now at risk.

Fixed-line Internet connections reportedly seems to work as businesses are reliant on them. However, both companies and individuals suffer from the disruptions and only traditional companies show resilience, even though the more progressive of them have to do without newly discovered sales channel on the web.

Rumours about new censorship system

There have been speculations that the military government is shutting down the Internet at night time to install new spying hardware and censorship protocols.

Human rights groups and international business organisations came together to condemn the military government’s moves to restrict the Internet in Myanmar via a draft cybersecurity bill and a series of amendments to the electronic transactions law.

The proposed cyber law would require that all online service providers keep all user data inside Myanmar and provide the government with the unrestricted authority to censor content or access user data which would allow total control of Internet traffic.



Support ASEAN news

Investvine has been a consistent voice in ASEAN news for more than a decade. From breaking news to exclusive interviews with key ASEAN leaders, we have brought you factual and engaging reports – the stories that matter, free of charge.

Like many news organisations, we are striving to survive in an age of reduced advertising and biased journalism. Our mission is to rise above today’s challenges and chart tomorrow’s world with clear, dependable reporting.

Support us now with a donation of your choosing. Your contribution will help us shine a light on important ASEAN stories, reach more people and lift the manifold voices of this dynamic, influential region.

$
Personal Info

Donation Total: $10.00

 

 

The post-coup chaos in Myanmar has an increasingly adverse effect on the country’s nascent digital economy as the junta has resorted to block Internet connections in an unpredictable way. For instance, the entire mobile Internet was blocked on March 15 after the so far bloodiest crackdown on protesters. The country is experiencing recurring nightly Internet blackouts since February 15 after the military decided to impose an Internet shutdown from 1am to 9am across the country. As a result, the country’s Internet economy has essentially come to a halt amid recurring connectivity issues. Large e-commerce companies including Singapore-based Grab and food...

The post-coup chaos in Myanmar has an increasingly adverse effect on the country’s nascent digital economy as the junta has resorted to block Internet connections in an unpredictable way.

For instance, the entire mobile Internet was blocked on March 15 after the so far bloodiest crackdown on protesters.

The country is experiencing recurring nightly Internet blackouts since February 15 after the military decided to impose an Internet shutdown from 1am to 9am across the country.

As a result, the country’s Internet economy has essentially come to a halt amid recurring connectivity issues. Large e-commerce companies including Singapore-based Grab and food delivery platform Foodpanda on March 15 suspended their services indefinitely.

Popular social media platforms getting blocked

The regime has also banned access to websites, including popular social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp and Instagram. The services remain banned in Myanmar “until further notice,” according to a statement issued by Norwegian telecom firm Telenor last month.

Telenor was the first foreign company to enter the Myanmar market after the country’s opening and began operations in 2014 alongside Qatar’s Ooredoo. Both companies pledged billions of US dollar of investments in telecom infrastructure, which are now at risk.

Fixed-line Internet connections reportedly seems to work as businesses are reliant on them. However, both companies and individuals suffer from the disruptions and only traditional companies show resilience, even though the more progressive of them have to do without newly discovered sales channel on the web.

Rumours about new censorship system

There have been speculations that the military government is shutting down the Internet at night time to install new spying hardware and censorship protocols.

Human rights groups and international business organisations came together to condemn the military government’s moves to restrict the Internet in Myanmar via a draft cybersecurity bill and a series of amendments to the electronic transactions law.

The proposed cyber law would require that all online service providers keep all user data inside Myanmar and provide the government with the unrestricted authority to censor content or access user data which would allow total control of Internet traffic.



Support ASEAN news

Investvine has been a consistent voice in ASEAN news for more than a decade. From breaking news to exclusive interviews with key ASEAN leaders, we have brought you factual and engaging reports – the stories that matter, free of charge.

Like many news organisations, we are striving to survive in an age of reduced advertising and biased journalism. Our mission is to rise above today’s challenges and chart tomorrow’s world with clear, dependable reporting.

Support us now with a donation of your choosing. Your contribution will help us shine a light on important ASEAN stories, reach more people and lift the manifold voices of this dynamic, influential region.

$
Personal Info

Donation Total: $10.00

 

 

NO COMMENTS

Leave a Reply