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Burma: Sanctions

Volume 473: debated on Thursday 13 March 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions he has had with his EU counterparts on targeted financial sanctions on those associated with the military regime in Burma. (192890)

I refer the hon. Member to the answer my hon. Friend the Minister for the Middle East (Dr. Howells) gave on 26 February 2008, Official Report, columns 1363-64W to the hon. Member for Mid-Norfolk (Mr. Simpson).

The EU listed companies with links to the Burmese military regime in its new package of measures agreed in October 2007.

EU member states are currently considering further restrictive measures against Burma.

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for Great Grimsby (Mr. Mitchell) of 4 March 2008, Official Report, column 2355W, on Burma: sanctions, by what means options for extending existing measures against members of the military regime in Burma to include targeted banking sanctions are being considered; and by what date he expects such consideration to be complete. (192967)

The EU common position on Burma includes a ban on investment and the provision of financial services to certain enterprises linked to the military regime. It also includes an asset freeze, which targets the regime leadership, the senior ranks of the military and their family members.

The UK is still exploring with its EU partners how best to target financial transactions owned or controlled by Burmese officials. As discussions are still continuing I am unable to comment on specific nominations under discussion as to do so could risk asset flight.

No date has yet been set to present the conclusions of these discussions.