Around 20,000 jobs have been created in Burma during the current fiscal year thanks to the increase in foreign direct investment (FDI), according to government data.
In the first five months of the 2013-14 fiscal year (April to August inclusive), FDI topped US$1.8 billion, mostly focused in the garment manufacturing sector.
Aung Naing Oo, the director-general of the Directorate of Investment and Company Administration (DICA), said the majority of investments came from East Asian countries such as South Korea, Japan and China. He said that Japanese automaker Nissan Motor Company was the most notable major investor in recent months.
“Every single garment factory that opens creates an additional 1,000 jobs,” he said. “This fiscal year, we have so far approved 20 garment factories, so can estimate that around 20,000 new jobs have been created.”
Aung Naing Oo added that a quicker process now exists for setting up a garment factory – one can now become operational within six months after acquiring the relevant permits.
He said the DICA is expecting around US$3 billion in FDI for the total year.
According to DICA data, the total amount of FDI in Burma since 1988 is over US$40 billion. Some 44 percent of that figure was invested in the energy sector; 32 percent in the oil and gas sector; and seven percent in the manufacturing sector.