Myanmar temples at dusk
Source: (Creative Commons)

Australia has long been hailed as one of the most successful immigrant societies in the world, with an extremely heavy immigrant population that is made up from countries far and wide. The immigrant population in Australia is widely regarded to be well assimilated into the country, and polls even show that citizens are overwhelmingly more pleased with their country’s immigration policies than the majority of American or EU citizens.

Australia Leading the Way

So, with such a glowing reputation preceding them, the Australian government is now using their knowledge on the subject to help other countries follow suit and become successful immigrant societies. In fact, last November, Australia and Myanmar came together with a common purpose and signed a memorandum that should heavily contribute to Myanmar being able to regulate and control its borders as best as possible, which should hopefully also help pave the way for the country to welcome back expats scattered around the world who would like to return to their homeland.

The Memorandum of Understanding that was signed between the two nations basically involved Australia providing assistance to Myanmar in the way the country manages its borders. Basically the main aim is to target serious issues such as people smuggling, and also to try and stop the moving of weapons and narcotics between borders. This is not an entirely new venture for Australia to make, but in fact is similar to assistance Australia has provided to both Cambodia and Indonesia in the past.

Securing Borders

In Cambodia’s case, the Australians actually helped the country to install a computerised alert list that warned border officials of people who shouldn’t be allowed to travel due to criminal offences or other such things. And now that Myanmar is beginning to open its borders and emerge and grow economically, Australia felt it was time to step in and guide these people to.

The initiative Australia has taken with these countries is commendable, but not entirely charitable – the Australian government believe that it also pays them to put these types of schemes in place, believing that they themselves will have stronger domestic borders if regional borders are made stronger too.

The agreement with Myanmar is shaped by Australia trying to assist Myanmar’s government in carrying out its own policies and is intended to be highly respectful to the Myanmar government. There is also concern for Myanmar’s refugees and minorities who have left their country in search of jobs or to flee internal conflict. The country wants to work with its neighbours who house their expats to find a solution that can assimilate all of Myanmar’s peoples, and while Australia may not be able to provide all the answers, their role in helping Myanmar in regulating its borders will surely serve to be very useful in the long run.