‘One Billion Kyats’ Worth of Property Lost in Mandalay Fire

By Zarni Mann 24 March 2016

MANDALAY — The City Municipal Department of Mandalay announced on Thursday that Tuesday’s fire in Mingalar Market had destroyed more than one billion kyats (over US$825,000) worth of property.

“In total, over one billion kyats were lost, including the price of the commodities and the burned section of the building,” said the Muncipal Department’s statement.

The statement also revealed that the market would need to be completely rebuilt as it is currently in danger of collapsing, adding that a temporary market venue would open as soon as possible.

An investigation team, which included engineers, inspected the burned building this week and found that it was not strong enough to withstand restoration. The department has decided to demolish it immediately and began reconstruction.

The Irrawaddy reported on Wednesday that more than 200 of Mingalar Market’s 480 shops had been completely razed by the fire, the cause of which is not yet known. Shop owners said they had hoped that the building could be fixed, rather than re-constructed, as they fear that the contractors will sell them their shop spaces back at increased prices which they will not be able to afford.

“We will not be able to buy back the new shops after they’ve been rebuilt. We don’t want to rebuild the market if we’ll only suffer as a result,” said Thwe Thwe San, whose grocery store was lost in the fire.