Tour operators barely surviving due to “incredibly shaky” demand

Small tour operators are on the verge of collapse as market demand in the tourism sector took a hit among Western visitors, as bookings for the impending peak season are “incredibly shaky”, according to a local company. In addition, hopes on wooing Asian investors were dashed by the now-abandoned “$1,000 in cash per tourist” entry […]

Millers, merchants urge illegal China-bound rice be stanched

The illegal outflow of rice via China’s border routes needs to be addressed through existing policies, regional rice-mill associations and local rice merchants have told the government. The export of rice without licence via Muse and Lwejel regions along the border with China, they said. Many bags of rice are being smuggled out of the […]

Thitikorn revs up for full entry into Myanmar market

Thitikorn (TK), a leading Thai hire-purchase provider in the motorcycle segment, is entering the Myanmar market with plans to operate a new company – Mingalaba Thitikorn Microfinance – established with registered capital of 200 million kyat (Bt4.85 million). Myanmar is the third overseas country in which the listed company has invested, after Laos and Cambodia. […]

Telenor Myanmar snaps up 1800MHz spectrum

Norwegian-owned cellco Telenor Myanmar has confirmed that it has purchased a twelve-year licence for a 2×10MHz block of spectrum in the 1800MHz band. The frequencies were priced at USD80 million with Telenor paying USD32 million up front, with the remainder to follow between the second and fourth year of the licence term. The cellco acquired […]

Malaysia’s Oldtown venture into Myanmar via franchisee

PETALING JAYA: Hong Leong Investment Bank (HLIB) Research believes the impact from Oldtown Bhd’s venture into Myanmar is minimal as it only accounts for less than 1% of total earnings. Hence, the research house is maintaining its earnings forecasts for the company as well as a “buy” call with a target price of RM2.09 Oldtown […]

Viettel entering mature Myanmar mobile market

Myanmar’s telecoms sector became one of the fastest growing in the world since it was opened up to foreign competition in late 2013, when Norway’s Telenor and Qatar’s Ooredoo won mobile licences to compete alongside state-owned incumbent MPT. The country had roughly 51 million mobile connections at the end of last year, up from around […]

ASA Microfinance Plans Expansion; to Invest $30 Million by 2019

As part of its efforts to eradicate poverty the current government allowed foreign microfinance companies to operate in Myanmar since 2012. The Netherlands-based microfinance firm Association for Social Advancement (ASA) Microfinance received a licence to operate in Myanmar in August 2014. “Our purpose of coming to Myanmar is not only getting profit from loans, but […]

YCDC Fights Fake Permits at Private Construction Sites

Constructors will not be allowed to post building permits for buildings themselves anymore, and have to use YCDC-made signboards instead, according to the Yangon City Development Committee (YCDC). YCDC said illegal builders are putting up signs on their projects that claim to have the Committee’s permission, while in reality the projects are illegal and the […]

Central Bank of Myanmar prepares action plan to stop dollar payments

While the kyat predominates in most domestic transactions, foreign currencies are still widely used. Many tourism businesses targeting foreigners deal in foreign currency, while importers and exporters make extensive use of dollars, and international companies often prefer their own currencies. Letter 904/2015 from the Central Bank of Myanmar’s Foreign Exchange department posted to its website […]

Gems and minerals bank to register in September

The creators of a new bank to service the gems and minerals sector will apply for a licence this month, spokesperson U Thet Naing told The Myanmar Times. If licenced, the new bank will add to a number of sector-specific banks that have opened over the past couple of years, including the Construction and Housing […]