The newspaper said the ferry was travelling from Pakeikkyi village to Myaungmya, about 150km west of Yangon, when the accident occurred.

The ferry went down in an area still recovering from a devastating cyclone in May which left more than 84,000 people dead.

With few roads in the region ferry travel is the only affordable means for most Irrawaddy delta residents to travel around the region or get their goods to market.