Facing competition, Myanmar's stodgy state-run English newspaper seeks joint venture partner

YANGON, Myanmar – The New Light of Myanmar newspaper is seeking joint venture partners as it gears up for competition. The newspaper for decades has held a monopoly on Myanmar’s English-language daily press.

A notice from the Information Ministry published Monday in state newspapers solicited expressions of interest from foreign and local partners for joint venture operation of the publication. The newspaper has a reputation as a stodgy government mouthpiece.

At least eight newspapers have been given permission to print daily editions starting next month for the first time since 1964.

President Thein Sein’s elected government has significantly relaxed media controls since taking power in 2011. It lifted censorship in August last year, allowing reporters to print material that would have been unthinkable during the five previous decades of military rule.