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As one of the least developed states throughout Burma, communication and transportation are major obstacles in Arakan State. Due to a lack of infrastructure and strict regulations on information transfer by the government, many Arakanese remain isolated from other areas of Burma and the outside world.
Communication devices, like mobiles and hand phones, are very costly for most people in Burma. Arakanese, particularly youth, tend to use the internet for their method of communication, especially when contacting those overseas, as well as for other opportunities, such as furthering their education and employment. Although the internet is generally accessible, local authorities often impose restrictions on internet cafes in Arakan State to prevent users from sending information and photographs of local life and political activities inside the country. Similar to other states in Burma, communication in the rural areas of Arakan State is worse than in the cities, as infrastructure is not as developed.
For the majority of Arakan's population, rivers are the primary means of transport due to the poor conditions of roads; therefore, waterways frequently serve as a lifeline for rural people to get access to essential goods and markets. In Arakan state, boats travel up and down the rivers selling and trading fire wood, bamboo as building material, and fish and farming products such as rice, fruits and vegetables. In addition to transportation, these waterways provide irrigation, potable water, and fish stocks, supporting millions of livelihoods all over Arakan State.
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