|It's estimated that around 70 percent of the world's finest jade comes from Myanmar (formerly known as Burma), with the industry making up around half of the country's gross domestic product.|
As with most of the jade discovered in the country, the stone will probably be sent across the border to China to be carved into jewellery and sculptures. The trade is estimated at US$31 billion and has been described as the 'biggest natural resource heist in modern history'. The recently elected government announced reforms in August to end corruption, abuse, and environmental wrongdoing in the jade industry.
In response to a series of deadly landslides, the government has already suspended operations at more than 2,000 jade mines in Kachin state.