Thai Deputy Prime Minister Niwatthumrong Boonsongpaisan yesterday flew to Yangon to attend a meeting of the Thai-Myanmar Joint Coordinating Committee (JCC) with Myanmar and Japan over the Dawei development project.
As JCC president, Myanmar is hosting the tripartite talks in Yangon. This will be the first time Japan will be joining the talks after being invited to invest in the project.
Japan was invited as an observer at the joint high-level meeting committee last June, said Arkhom Termpittayapaisith, secretary-general at the Office of the National Economic and Social Development Board. However, Arkhom said Japan had not decided whether to invest in the Dawei project because of the huge outlays required.
The meeting will report progress in infrastructure projects such as road development, the deep-sea port, the industrial park, the township in the industrial park, and development of the electricity and water systems.
Arkhom said Japan wanted to hear Thailand’s opinion and also to know how committed Myanmar was to investing in this project. In general, government will have to invest in the mega-project, especially in infrastructure, to persuade investors to get on board and strengthen their confidence for the long term.
The meeting will also discuss progress in establishing a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) as investment legislation is approved by Myanmar’s parliament. This would give investors clearer information on what privileges the government can offer.
Project management and the regulating role of the SPV will be considered. The SPV will be a company holding the Dawei project concession. It will define the direction of infrastructure investment – for example, whether a project will be solely the government’s responsibility or will be a joint investment of the government and the private sector.
The talks will also focus on planned roadshows abroad to attract investors. Hiring of a consulting firm to evaluate Italian-Thai Development is under consideration. The firm has initially invested in the project to clear area for roads and port facilities. The meeting will also discuss moving the local community out of the area.
Source: ELEVEN Media