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Myotha Project Draws Investments of K150B, Developer Eyes IPO

With the Mandalay Myotha Industrial Project having attracted local and foreign investments totaling K150.5 billion so far, officials are now eyeing a public listing in the near future, said U Aung Win Khaing, chair of the project’s developer, Mandalay Myotha Industrial Development Public Co Ltd (MMID).

“We are aiming for an Initial Public Offering in the future and are working to raise the value of the Myotha project by drawing in more investments. We are inviting all interested investors to set up shop here,” he said.

The project, which is jointly implemented by the Mandalay Region Government and MMID, drew K9.4 billion in revenues and K130.5 million earnings during the 2016-17 fiscal year, according to Dr Tun Tun Aung, managing director of the project.

Development and construction work for the project first began in 2013 across 260,000 acres of land. Around 12,000 acres, or 4.6 percent of land space is being used by factories across several sectors to generate revenue.

There are currently 7 international factories operating in the Mandalay Myotha Industrial Park. These include animal feed, plywood, snacks and concrete factories run by investors from Indonesia, Hong Kong, China and Denmark which have been approved by the Myanmar Investment Commission. Some local private investors have also set up shop in the area.

Meanwhile, a $390 million agreement has been reached with Techong Industrial Park Investment Development Co. Ltd from China’s Yunnan province to set up an urban industrial zone on a 300-acre plot of land within the Myotha industrial park, said U Aung Win Khaing.

Investors in the project will also enjoy up to 7 years’ tax relief.

Human rights

Investments in the Mandalay Myotha Industrial Project do not come without potential risks though. When the project first began in 2013, protests which led to the jailing of several farmers took place as a result of disagreements over land compensation.

The Myanmar Times reported that cultivated land from 14 villages had been involved in the project area. While some farmers were compensated for giving up their land, others were paid sums that undervalued their land, while some have yet to receive any payment. Negotiations are now underway for farmers to be paid K2 million per acre of land or given alternative plots of land.

Those issues last year sparked accusations of human rights violations by the project’s developers from international human rights watchdogs. These include the International Federation for Human Rights, which said in a September 2017 statement that the project failed to uphold proper human rights due diligence standards.

MMID has so far maintained that it has done nothing wrong though. “About 8,400 acres of our land is pasture land. The regional government has converted those lands to vacant land and allocated it to us for development. We have settled 95pc of the administrative procedures and there is nothing to be worried about,” U Aung Win Khaing said.

“Mandalay has become a hub for travelers as it is now connected to other major cities via air, water and road. We are making great efforts to promote the Myotha project to the private sector as part of our policy,” Regional Minister for Electricity and Construction U Zarni Aung said.

 

Source: The Myanmar Times

 

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