Donors offered USD100 million to help Myanmar cope with the devastation caused by Cyclone Nargis but hinted at limited generosity if they do not secure access to affected areas. The amount is just a fraction of the USD11 billion that the government believed it would need to recover from the disaster. “I’m cautiously optimistic that this could be a turning point for Myanmar to be more flexible, more practical, and face the reality as it is on the ground,” United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said at the end of the meeting. Singaporean foreign minister George Yeo summed up the sentiment of donors: “It is for a lack of information that not more has been given at this particular time” and “the problem is one of establishing greater trust between Myanmar and the world community.” Dutch minister for development cooperation Bert Koenders confirmed this view. “The reason we came is to support Ban Ki-moon. We’re all very positive about what he has agreed with the government leader here, but also skeptical because you have to see the facts on the ground,” he stated.
Source: Donors pledging Myanmar cyclone aid (AP)