Small firms in Myanmar not benefitting much from SEA Games

Myanmar is hosting the Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games) after a 44-year hiatus, bringing with it business opportunities in areas like printing and construction. But small firms in the country do not appear to be benefitting as much from the largest regional sporting event.

YANGON: Myanmar is hosting the Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games) after a 44-year hiatus, bringing with it business opportunities in areas like printing and construction.

But small firms in the country do not appear to be benefitting as much from the largest regional sporting event.

A number of SEA Games flags, banners and billboards can be seen around Yangon.

Shops have been preparing items such as SEA Games t-shirts to celebrate the Games, hoping to reel in profits from the much anticipated event.

But it appears that many will be disappointed.

Thein Toe, a shop owner, said: “For the SEA Games, big companies and main sponsors gain the most from the event. Small businesses like mine don’t see many benefits. But when the Games begin and people become more interested, I hope we might be able to see an improvement in our business.”

For those who have seen some benefits to their business, the improvements are minimal.

Phyo Wai Aung, a sales assistant, said: “For the SEA Games, hotels and companies are ordering flags, and printing firms like ours are seeing more business. If Myanmar hosts other games and events like the SEA Games, we might be able to see more sales.”

Companies are producing items related to the SEA Games, hoping to cash in on this regional event.

However, many are not allowed to produce items that bear the official SEA Games logo, unless they have been authorised by the government to do so.

But companies are trying all ways and means to try to improve their business during this period, and are hoping that sales for such items will pick up significantly once the events get underway.

Source: Channel News Asia

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