Myanmar’s New Economic Zone Attracts Foreign Interest But Local Ire

YANGON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – Looking north from Myint Win’s farm, across rice paddies and past bamboo huts, a massive new industrial development on the outskirts of Myanmar’s biggest city gleams in the distance. The buildings sprang up during the first phase of developing the Thilawa Special Economic Zone (SEZ), a 6,200 acre (2,500-hectare) industrial […]

More transparency needed from local business: MCRB

A select few Myanmar firms display a higher level of transparency than most of their ASEAN peers, but many large companies continue to show little interest in disclosure – even when legally required – according to a recent report from the Myanmar Centre for Responsible Business (MCRB). There is huge variation in the approach Myanmar’s […]

Myanmar moved off money laundering watchlist

Inter-governmental body the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) has removed Myanmar from its list of states deemed weak in combating money laundering and terrorist financing, which experts think should make international banks more comfortable doing business with the country. FATF, which counts China, the United States and India as members, released a public statement on […]

MIC issues ‘ominously broad’ foreign investment restriction

A directive issued at the end of March by the Myanmar Investment Commission has added an additional layer of complexity for foreign investors and granted ministries greater scope to make exceptions on a case-by-case basis. The notification – designated 26/2016 – adjusts the list of economic activities that require a joint venture under the Foreign Investment Law. In […]

Yangon Stock Exchange weak on corporate governance rules: observers

While globally an initial public offering usually means throwing the doors to your company wide open and letting investors poke around, industry observers say the Yangon bourse has not gone far enough on provisions for transparency. According to listing criteria published in state media last August, companies that wish to go public on Yangon’s stock […]

FDI poised to flow on Myanmar’s political transition

Myanmar’s landmark November polls, lauded by international observers, may have given pause to foreign investors weighing the market — but the country’s political transition could attract a new rush of attention, according to industry experts. Once isolated under the regime of a military junta, Myanmar has made great strides in development under quasi-civilian rule. The […]

Barriers remain to technology revolution: MCRB

Myanmar’s burgeoning technology universe is beset by risks that could threaten users, according to a new report on the information and communication technology sector by the Myanmar Centre for Responsible Business. The Myanmar ICT Sector-Wide Impact Assessment (SWIA) is the third report of its kind, after MCRB published two others concentrating on oil and gas […]

Wage war

Negotiations are currently being held in Rangoon which may pave the way for an official minimum wage in Burma. A workshop between employees’ representatives, international labour organisations, government officials and the parliament-appointed National Committee for National Wage (NCNW) began on Sunday at the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (UMFCCI) and […]

Government, hotels pressure local officials over sand mining

The government, hoteliers and civil society are stepping up the pressure on Thandwe authorities to curb rampant sand mining at Myanmar’s premier beach destination, Ngapali. Tourism sources close to the Ministry of Hotels and Tourism say President U Thein Sein is aware of the issue, and has ordered action to be taken against companies that […]

US offers path to redemption for ‘cronies’

Myanmar officials and the business community yesterday expressed hope that the lifting of US sanctions against prominent industrialist U Win Aung last week would open the door to an influx of US investment and the removal from Washington’s blacklist of other tycoons linked to the former military regime. An industry insider who asked not to […]