Four private daily newspapers out of the total 16 granted by the Myanmar government started temporary publication on Monday, signifying the re-introduction of private daily newspapers in the Southeast Asian nation after a stop for five decades.
The four daily newspapers put into circulation are Pyidaungsu Daily (Union Daily), Shwe Naing Ngan Thit Daily (Golden Freshland Daily), San Taw Chein Daily (Standard Times Daily) and Voice Daily.
The Union Daily is run by the ruling Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP).
The a dozen remaining granted daily newspapers are expected to emerge on a later date. They include Khit Moe Daily, Empire Daily, the Messenger, Up-Date Daily, Myanmar Newsweek Daily, Mizzima Daily, Eleven Daily, Khit Thit Daily, Yangon Times, Myanmar Dika, Union Athan, 7-Day Daily and D-Wave.
There are some six state-owned newspapers published daily in Myanmar, namely Myanmar Alin (Myanmar language), Kyemon (The Mirror) (Myanmar language), Myawaddy (Myanmar language), The New Light of Myanmar (English language) and Yadanarpon (Myanmar language), in addition to over 200 private-run weekly news journals in Myanmar, English and Chinese languages as well as over 200 magazines and nearly 7,000 private publishers.
More than 20 offices of foreign news agencies are also operating in the country.
As part of its significant media reform, the government announced in December 2012 free publication of private daily newspapers, dissolving its Press Scrutiny and Registration Division, a follow-up move after domestic media publication control was totally liberalized in August 2012. The Myanmar government also reformed its 29-member provisional Myanmar Press Council in September 2012 to deal with media issues before a press media law is formally enacted by parliament.