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Better Bank Services, Enforcement Needed for Remittance Licences to Work

In an attempt to shrink the volume of illegal money transfers between Myanmar and its neighbours, the Central Bank of Myanmar (CBM) last week announced the availability of official remittance licences. The move, which commenced on November 15, is aimed at facilitating the legal movement of money by traders and migrant workers based overseas into […]

With 70% Unbanked Population, Myanmar Bets on Fintech to Improve Financial Inclusion

Despite the Myanmar government’s push to expand access to financial services, the country still trails far behind the rest of Asia in rates of participation in formal financial services, financial literacy, savings rates and the use of digital financial services, according to a new report by social enterprise ONOW Myanmar. But fintech and mobile technology […]

As remittance market reaches saturation, mobile money keeps growing

If the mobile money market were a football match, then the second half has just begun. As the undisputed market leader, Wave Money is already a few goals ahead. It reports having almost 50,000 agents and more than 11 million customers, who remitted US$2.8 billion between January and September of this year. By the end […]

Strong Thai Baht Could Impact Imports, Currency

The Thai baht has reached a six-year high against the US dollar and is now at around 30.2 per dollar. Of the four countries that share borders with Myanmar, Thailand is the second largest trading partner, with trade volumes during fiscal 2018-19 amounting to US$3.8 billion, according to government data. Just this month, the Central […]

Central bank may intervene to stabilise exchange rates: Vice governor

. The Central Bank of Myanmar (CBM) is planning to take additional measures to further stabilise the foreign exchange market, vice governor U Soe Min said in Parliament on Monday. The new measures may include it intervening in the foreign exchange market, the Myanmar Times understands. The move comes on the back of a recent […]

Latest CBM ruling seen as setback for cashless transactions

An announcement from the Central Bank of Myanmar (CBM) disallowing the use of prepaid cards in the local currency is a step backwards for cashless transactions, industry observers said. The CBM, which made the announcement on July 25, said prepaid cards with a limit of US$5,000 issued by local banks in partnership with foreign financial […]

KB Kookmin Bank interested in expanding Myanmar business

KB Kookmin Bank, one of South Korea’s top four banks, is interested in expanding its presence in Myanmar with more financial products and services, especially in the areas of providing financing for housing and small-and-medium enterprises (SMEs). KB Kookmin’s chief representative in Yangon, Kim Chang-woo, said the bank “is considering expanding its business in Myanmar […]

Only 4 consulting firms submit request for proposal to foreign bank selection group

Four firms out of eight consulting subsidiaries in Myanmar have submitted Requests for Proposal to provide consultation services for the selection of foreign banks. The RFPs were invited as the Central Bank of Myanmar is moving forward with the liberalization process. Following the announcement inviting RFPs, Deloitte Touche Myanmar Vigour Advisory Limited, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC) Myanmar […]

CBM to approve QR code payment transactions soon

Digital payments using QR codes will be introduced to Myanmar as soon as the framework for such payments are ready. Shanghai-based financial services company UnionPay International’s (UPI) QR code system accessible through mobile phones would be made available when the Central Bank of Myanmar (CBM) makes the official announcement. UPI operates as a subsidiary of […]

Myanmar risks return to money-laundering watchlist

Myanmar has a high chance of falling back into the category of “high-risk” country on an international money-laundering watchlist because of its failure so far to impose and enforce adequate safeguards, according to officials and experts. They warn that Myanmar’s likely return next year to the “grey list” of states compiled by the Financial Action […]