Islamic State is the richest terrorist group in the world, with an estimated annual turnover of between $2 billion and $3 billion. The groups control over substantial territory allows it to generate considerable amounts of money from organised crime, including the smuggling of oil and antiquities and taxing those smuggling drugs and people, as well the through levying taxes and fines on the populations of the areas it controls.
In 2011, Myanmar's quasi-civilian government initiated one of the most ambitious economic and political transformation campaigns of the last 50 years. The reformist agenda has the potential to steer Myanmar away from insecurity and economic stagnation. But it will be difficult to leverage significant endowments of natural resources to achieve sustainable security, lasting political settlements with ethnic states and economic growth that supports human development. As such, this briefing paper assesses the trajectory and significance of resource conflict risks and threat multipliers in Myanmar.
Open Briefing: Reports that construction of an alternative oil pipeline from South Sudan to Port Lamu, Kenya, will begin in October 2013 are overly optimistic and on-schedule pipeline construction is unlikely. However, Juba is highly likely to continue to seek alternatives to the existing pipeline to Port Sudan, Sudan.