China’s foreign ministry and the Chinese Embassy have called on authorities in Myanmar to protect Chinese-owned companies and personnel, according to an Associated Press report.
This follows a series of attacks, mainly on textile and apparel factories in industrial parks across Yangon, some of which were set alight.
A statement posted by the Chinese Embassy to Myanmar on Facebook about the importance of protecting Chinese businesses led to an overwhelmingly furious reaction in more than 52,000 comments, many of which accused Chinese authorities of turning a blind eye to the continuing police and army violence against the people of Myanmar.
Many of the comments also alleged Myanmar’s police or other agitators were behind the destruction in order to incite further trouble.
A large proportion of Yangon’s hundreds of garment factories are run by Chinese manufacturers, but factories operated by Taiwanese, South Korean and Thai companies also have significant presence. Most are private companies that supply international fashion brands and play an important role in the local economy and in providing employment for local people.