Political and Economic Change in Myanmar

Election results in Myanmar point to new opportunities for the poor.

Five Talents is working to spark micro-enterprise development in what, until recently, has been one of the most closed societies in the world. This week's election results points to new reforms in Myanmar, with a broad victory for Aung San Suu Kyi and the National League for Democracy. The election is a milestone in Mynmar's transition from decades of military dictatorship. It is the country's first general election since a nominally civilian government was introduced in 2011. That was the same year that Five Talents began work in Myanmar, strengthening pre-existing savings groups and helping to expand their growth outward into impoverished communities.

More than a third of Myanmar's 51.4 million people live on about a dollar a day. Rural poverty is widespread and urban slums surround factories with low paying jobs and an absence of public services. In September, the minimum wage was raised to $2.80 per day. Workers hope for additional changes with the new leadership.

Meanwhile, Five Talents is eager to continue equipping entrepreneurs across Myanmar with access to savings groups, small business training and loans. Take a glimpse at some of the lives impacted and small businesses developed through Five Talents work in Myanmar: