Focus on parliamentary links, education, agriculture and trade
The Speaker of Myanmar’s House of Representatives (the Pyithu Hluttaw), Thura U Shwe Mann, has led an historic visit to Australia – the first by a parliamentary delegation from Myanmar.
The Speaker was accompanied by the chairs of five parliamentary committees keen to find out about Australian parliamentary procedures as parliamentary reform continues in Myanmar.
Education, agriculture and trade were an important focus for the visit to Sydney, Canberra and Melbourne.
In Sydney the delegation met with NSW Governor Marie Bashir, visited the University of Sydney and CSIRO’s Riverside Life Sciences Centre, and held discussions with Asialink, a leading centre for the promotion of public understanding of the countries of Asia.
The delegation’s Canberra program included meetings with President of the Senate John Hogg, Speaker Peter Slipper, Foreign Minister Bob Carr, Employment and Workplace Relations Minister Bill Shorten, Parliamentary Secretary for Foreign Affairs Richard Marles and Deputy Opposition Leader Julie Bishop.
A roundtable with parliamentary committee chairs allowed the delegation to find out about committee processes and how they are used to allow community input to and engagement with parliament.
The Melbourne visit included an inspection of the Northern Lodge educational training facility run by the Northern Metropolitan Institute of TAFE.