မိုင်းလား / 勐拉
|Township||Mong La Township|
|Elevation||640 m (2,100 ft)|
|Time zone||UTC+6.30 (MST)|
Mong La or Mongla (Burmese: မိုင်းလား; Chinese: 勐拉; pinyin: Měnglā), also known as Little Mong La or Xiaomengla (小勐拉) to distinguish from neighboring Chinese Mengla County, is the administrative seat of Mong La Township in Shan State, Burma.
Mongla is located opposite Daluo, a Chinese border town in Yunnan Province, and approximately 258 kilometres (160 mi) from Mae Sai, a border town of Thailand, and approximately 80 kilometres (50 mi) north-east of Kengtung.
Although technically the town is in Myanmar, electricity, telecommunications, infrastructure works, as well as imports and exports are dependent on China. The main currency used in Mong La is the Chinese yuan.
Mongla, Mengla or Meungla are different Romanization of the same Tai word, both the e and the o here should be pronounced like the Scottish accent pronunciation of u in bucks. Thus, to differentiate Mengla County in China and Mong La Township/settlement in Myanmar the locals call the former Greater Mengla/Mongla while the latter Lesser Mongla/Mengla.
Mong La casinos were closed down in January 2005 for about a year because of complaints from the PRC Government. There has been an increase in illegal wildlife trafficking in the region. Mong La has a history of rapid expansion, but in the late 2000s, its economy was in decline.
The tourism from Thailand to Mong La resumed in 2012 after the signing of new cease fire agreement between the Burmese military government and the Mong La NDAA group in September 2011.
There are 2000-3000 visitors each day. Gambling through the Internet is available. Its transvestite cabaret shows attract a lot of tourists from China. Gambling, prostitution and money laundering are other purposes of Chinese visitors. It is the home of Drug Eradication Museum, also known as the Opium Free Zone Museum, and the Dway Nagara Pagoda. Admission to the museum is free.
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- Asia Times Online, Virtual gambling in Myanmar's drug country, Michael Black and Roland Fields, Aug 26, 2006
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- Thailand, China Williams
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