Myanmar’s Changing Rural Economy: Evidence from the Delta & Dry Zone


October 2, 2017 - Benjamin Belton

Benjamin Belton
Myanmar’s Changing Rural Economy: Evidence from the Delta & Dry Zone

LIFT Donor Retreat, Yangon
October 2, 2017


  • Sustain investments in infrastructure, and complementary ‘soft’ infrastructure – well trained teachers, health professionals, etc.
  • Measures to support safer, less risky, higher quality migration.
  • Overcome emerging spatial inequalities in mechanization (e.g. by improving road access, land levelling).
  • Microcredit widely available but rarely invested in agriculture or non-farm business; Increase MADB payments for non-paddy crops
  • RNFE complements farming but still provides relatively limited employment – need options for promoting greater productivity & job growth.
  • Land-poor HH heavily dependent on agricultural labor. Viable farm sector essential for rural incomes & employment. High value labor intensive crops (e.g. fish, melons); R&D to improve pulse, oilseed & paddy varieties and strategies to multiply and distribute.
  • Strategies to mitigate impacts of climate extremes – e.g. groundwater irrigation, water storage, stress tolerant varieties.



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