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US-China tiff offers opportunity

While strolling around Yangon’s city centre recently and reading news alerts about the US-China trade war, something caught my eye at Kantharyar Centre across from Kandawgyi Lake. It was a sales gallery at the new shopping centre displaying SUVs and sedans. What caught my attention was the brand of SUV most prominently displayed: Gold AYA […]

Expect kyat to depreciate over the next two years: Fitch

The Myanmar kyat could weaken in the coming quarters as a result of renewed trade tensions between the US and China and resistance against pressure to slash interest rates by the Federal Reserve. According to forecasts released by Fitch Solutions Macro Research this month, the kyat is expected to weaken to K1600 per US dollar […]

US eases visa requirements for Myanmar citizens

Myanmar citizens can now apply for a combined B-1/B-2 visa, which allows travel to the US for both business and/or tourism purposes, the US Embassy in Myanmar announced Monday. The single-entry visa is valid for three months and there is no issuance fee. “Building on the growing travel between our two countries, the US Embassy […]

‘US keen to invest, strengthen ties with Myanmar, but faster reform needed’

The lack of infrastructure, clearer rules on business and domestic politics continue to be issues weighing on investor sentiment towards Myanmar. US Ambassador to Myanmar Scot Marciel, who spoke at the American Chamber of Commerce Myanmar’s “Improving Ease of Doing Business Forum” yesterday, acknowledged that while the government has been implementing reforms and building infrastructure, […]

Foreign education providers seek opportunities in Myanmar

The private education industry in the country continues to evoke interest from foreign education providers, with several having invested here in the past year ever since the government loosened regulations for the setting up of such educational institutions. Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (UMFCCI) officials recently met with private education […]

Facebook among firms named on Myanmar human rights ‘dirty list

Facebook is among a number of companies from the US, UK, France, Switzerland and China named on a “dirty list” of corporations accused of involvement in human rights and environmental violations in Myanmar, or of doing business with the country’s military, which is accused of genocide. A list of 49 companies, compiled by the pressure […]

Ordinary folk feel the pinch from tumbling kyat

The downward spiral of the kyat against the US dollar has taken its toll on the prices that people have to pay for everyday items like rice, fish, meat, and vegetables. Housewives complain that even the prices of salt, fish paste and other condiments that are staples for ordinary folk have increased. The prices of […]

In Myanmar, economic opportunity and a renewed commitment to democracy are on the horizon if leader Aung San Suu Kyi wants them

When Thura Ko went last week to meet some local partners in the Mandalay, he ordered a motorcycle-taxi through an app on his smartphone and paid for it with his credit card. “We’ve gone from an 8% mobile penetration rate to 90% in six years,” said Ko, a foreign investor who has advised US and […]

Investments declined in 2017-18: MIC

Despite an increase in the volume of projects, total investment in value terms fell by around US$900 million in 2017-18 compared to 2016-17, U Thaung Tun, chair of the Myanmar Investment Commission (MIC), said in Parliament last week. In the 2017-18 fiscal year, Myanmar received $5.7 billion for 222 projects. Around $1 billion of the […]

What the US Can Learn from China and India’s Engagement With Myanmar

Washington and Brussels recently levied new economic sanctions against certain Myanmar military officers in connection with the atrocities of the Rohingya crisis unfolding in the country’s western Rakhine state, where thousands of the Muslim minority group have died and hundreds of thousands more have fled across the border to Bangladesh. The United Nations High Commissioner […]