Squatters yet to be evicted by the Myanmar government at the Thilawa Special Economic Zone are holding back Japanese private companies from joining the Mitsubishi-led consortium that operates 49 percent, a Mitsubishi spokesperson told Mizzima on Thursday.
“We are going to invite other companies to join the consortium and also we are going to invite the Japanese government. Each company has some regulations, and some opinions – so far, we don’t have definite comments from our partners,” said Mitsuo Ido, Mitsubishi Corporation’s General Manager in Yangon, speaking on the sidelines of the 22nd World Economic Forum in Naypyitaw.
“This is a huge project and we need more partners.”
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe witnessed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between Myanmar and Japanese stakeholders at Thilawa on May 25, replacing a less binding Memorandum of Cooperation signed in December last year as they inch towards a joint venture.
The consortium of three private Japanese companies – Mitsubishi, Marubeni and Sumitomo – is represented by Mitsubishi’s chief executive Ken Kobayashi. Myanmar’s nine public companies under the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (UMFCCI) president Win Aung own 51 percent of the SEZ.
Mitsubishi expects the two parties to establish the joint venture by the end of 2015.