China’s poverty alleviation efforts in Myanmar help ease Rakhine State situation

China has been paying close attention to the Rakhine State conflict in Myanmar and the ensuing refugee exodus to Bangladesh. In March, during the legislative two sessions, Foreign Minister Wang Yi said China has always insisted on a peaceful and rightful way of dealing with international affairs, especially those at the center of attention. Nearly […]

How the West won and lost Myanmar

When former political prisoner Aung San Suu Kyi and her long persecuted National League for Democracy party won election in 2015, Western nations which maintained sanctions against the previous rights-abusing military regime cheered the democratic result and hoped for transition. Suu Kyi was subsequently feted in various European capitals, including Oslo, where she received her […]

Waiting for change at Myanmar’s central bank

Myanmar’s central bank governor Kyaw Kyaw Maung has long been seen as an impediment to reform. But come July, he will be out and a new chief will be in, heralding, it is to be hoped, a new era of change Being a bank in Myanmar isn’t easy, with lenders of all sizes facing insuperable […]

Mobile money services make waves in Myanmar

Seven years ago, the country had virtually no formal banking sector. Now, its clunkier commercial lenders face extinction thanks to the arrival of exciting new mobile money services whose mission is to march onwards and upwards. Brad Jones wasn’t sure what to expect when he moved to Yangon in early 2015 to become chief executive […]

Govt risks derailing economy despite legislative reforms

Candid comments from businesses expose this govt’s leadership and policy void in managing the economy, with no vision and little action. As the administration concludes its second year, it has yet to deliver. BUSINESS leaders, in rare candour, have expressed strong reservations and wide-ranging criticism over the current government’s approach to the economy as it […]

Irish building up a head of steam in Myanmar

When Kieran Rabbitt stepped off a plane and into the heavy Yangon heat four years ago, little did he think he’d still be in Myanmar today, at the cutting edge of the country’s digital revolution. From offices in downtown Yangon, the Athenry native – along with Karim Ainsworth from Belfast – runs Cube Digital. The […]

Myanmar needs urgent reforms as economy’s in the woods

MYANMAR’S economy is still in the woods: The Aung San Suu Kyi-led government has delayed a long-awaited reform to allow foreign companies to purchase stakes of up to 35 per cent in local companies as business confidence has plummeted drastically, while jungle-style “ceasefire capitalism” flourishes in insurgency affected areas. To top it all, there are […]

Myanmar to raise minimum wage by 33%

YANGON — Myanmar will raise its minimum wage by one-third to 4,800 kyat ($3.63) per day, a move that will affect the country’s labor-intensive exporting industries like garment manufacturing and food processing. A panel of representatives from the government, labor and management proposed the wage hike in early January. During the 60-day public debate period, […]

Myanmar Vows to Improve Company Registry, Cut Red Tape

Myanmar plans to launch an electronic company-registry system this year and boost its efforts to reduce red tape for businesses after it amended its Companies Act last month to attract foreign investment. “Within six to seven months, Myanmar will establish an electronic company-registry system similar to what we have seen in Hong Kong,” Robert San […]

Myanmar hopes to double electricity capacity by 2021

YANGON: Myanmar is planning to double its electric power capacity by 2021 by building natural gas-fired power plants, two senior officials told Reuters on Wednesday, in an ambitious move to tackle chronic power shortages in the energy-starved country. With only one-third of the country’s 60 million people connected to the electrical grid and cities experiencing […]