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Digital Archive International History Declassified

February 08, 1964

CHINESE FOREIGN MINISTRY’S SUMMARY FOR THE EMBASSY OF THE BURMESE GOVERNMENT’S CIRCUMSTANCES FOR 1963 AND OFFICIAL DIRECTIVE FOR 1964 PLANS AND PROJECTS

This document was made possible with support from the MacArthur Foundation, Leon Levy Foundation

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    The Foreign Ministry concludes that based on Burma's geopolitics importance, the Chinese government should continue to struggle for the support and neutral position of Ne Win's government.
    "Chinese Foreign Ministry’s Summary for the Embassy of the Burmese Government’s Circumstances for 1963 and Official Directive for 1964 Plans and Projects," February 08, 1964, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, PRC FMA 105-01864-01. Obtained for CWIHP by Hongwei Fan and translated for CWIHP by Max Maller. http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/118238
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The Foreign Ministry’s directive: “We suspect that in 1964 the generals in the Ne Win government will still desire to maintain relations with us, but they are very cautious. They have to simultaneously keep in mind Ne Win’s internal opposition. It is possible that their relations with us will feature the occasional unfriendly word…But Burma’s strategic position is extremely crucial, and the changes in their domestic circumstances have an important impact on us. Therefore, we must continue to struggle for Ne Win’s government, supporting its pursuits and peaceful neutrality. In accordance with the policy of friendliness between Burma and China, we must address and mindfully handle  specific problems connected with internal changes and do our work with the utmost integrity.”

Summary: In April 1963, Liu Shaoqi visited Burma, contributing in an important way to the advancement of peace talks with Burma.

Burmese nationalization “has caused every crucial connection in the Burmese economy to suffer disruption. However, recommendations for new connections have not coincided, leading to a crisis for the agricultural and urban economic life and universal degradation in private businesses. Some of these have shut down, leading to rising unemployment, rise in price of goods, and general dissatisfaction at all levels of society…Burma relies heavily on us and on Russia; they are a crucial communications channel for us, so we need to continue to maintain an amicable relationship with the Burmese…After peace talks broke down, a good deal of ambassadors from every political party and social unit were successively placed under arrest. The Ne Win government has exercised severe control in its contact between military officers and the embassies. The embassy’s work of fostering friendship has already been impacted…Energetically increase Chinese expatriates’ patriotism education and ‘resistance against revisionism’ education. Because of Ne Win’s anti-foreigner measures, Chinese expatriates wishing to emigrate face difficulties. We should educate the ethnic Chinese, developing a spirit of mutual aid and support, diligently enabling expatriates in every kind of social endeavor, thus benefiting their long term survival. As for the issue of upper class expatriates diverting their funds to within China’s borders, we must consider the situation and facilitate a solution to these difficulties.”