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MMRD BULLETIN
February 18, 2019

NEWS
ECONOMY

Central bank to issue official remittance licences soon

The Central Bank of Myanmar (CBM) will grant official remittance licenses to authorized money changers within two months.

The move is expected to curb illegal remittances and the informal flow of foreign currency into the country under the Hundi.

The informal flow of currency outside the banking industry through unofficial money transfers is much larger than the legal currency flows inside the banking industry. Therefore, the licenses to official money transfer businesses will grant within the next two months.

Much of the illegal money transfers take place in the export sector. Illegal remittances are also made by migrant workers in Thailand and Malaysia.

Source: Myanmar Times

Investors, business tycoons, and magnates share outlook, ideas at Invest Myanmar Summit off to a great start

The Invest Myanmar Summit 2019 is off to a roaring start in Nay Pyi Taw, offering local and foreign investors opportunities for business and investment through a single window and one-stop facility, and a platform to interact with each other, obtain information, and exchange ideas one-on-one with the business elite.

Dr. Aung Tun Thet, (Economist)
In doing business it is vital to ensure profit, to take care of the people, and to conserve environment. Above all, the dignity, ethic and prestige are also necessary to incorporate. When we are welcoming investments from other countries, it is essential to have fine basic structure on economic, political, and social matters. For the economic development of our own country, the political situation must be fair enough with the rule of law in good balance and equilibrium. Politics and social matters are to be taken into consideration for inviting foreign investors.
It is very much fundamental that the incoming investments must be in the interest and advantage of the people. Moreover, they should be in the health and education sectors. Another vital aspect is to achieve corruption free environment, which is impediment to the investors. All the government departments must move fast in their office functioning so as to garner investments.
In this new style of summit, foreign and local business people would surely come forward with open hearts and talk candidly, and therefore, I would like to urge to all stakeholders to get the best and most out of the summit.

U Ye Aung Moe (Director, Rakhine State, Directorate of Hotel and Tourism)
In Rakhine State, we have most popular resorts and destinations namely Ngapali Beach and Mrauk-U Cultural Heritage Site. We have many beautiful beaches similar to Ngapali Beach, adding more beauties at Gwa Township, Myanaung Island and Ramree Island.
For the development of tourism industry, the Ministry of Hotel and Tourism and the Rakhine State Government are trying the best in their cooperation. Investments are also welcomed at the agriculture, animal breeding, fisheries, and industrial sectors. In the upcoming February 2019, we have arranged the Rakhine State Investment Fair at Ngapali Bach Resort, where we would offer business opportunity and investment prospects.

U Sithu Moe Myint, Executive Director and Country Manager MPRL E & P Group of Companies
At this summit 2019, we have presented the services regarding Block A-6 that of MPRL E&P which played a key role in the successful exploration and production of hydrocarbon resources in Myanmar.
The efforts to improve oil production in Mann field have supplied the nation with a more cost effective means for domestic oil consumption. The offshore exploration success in block A-6 has brought the nation one step closer towards accessing a long term sustainable energy supply for future electrical power generation needs.
We also presented offshore logistic station to support block A-6. We are now in the initial process for the production of natural gas as we have accomplished the project in the Ayeyawaddy Region. We have planned to produce natural gas in the next five years.
The project being categorized at the offshore Block A – 6 is sophisticated, superior and hard scheme as it stands out at 21st project and the previous projects are listed as 20 projects on this planet. As the project has been earmarked for five years timeframe, it could be referred as very fast scheme.
For the successful implementation, we need to establish offshore logistic station as we have had to rely on the stations owned by Singaporean companies which incurred unnecessary expenses. Therefore, we have build offshore logistic station within two years which would surely aids and assists the Block A – 6 mission.
As the geographical feature and situation of Myanmar is very much strategic in the connectivity of the region, we intend to acquire multi-purpose offshore deep sea port with a broader vision.

U Maung Weik, Chairman, Sae Paing Development Limited
The speech delivered by the State Counselor is excellent as she invited the investors, and that the entire circumstances and conditions in Myanmar are fine. It is very much heartening that all the government departments are ready to offer helping hands and the relevant chief ministers of regions and states are ready to give concessions as much as they could.
I am of the view that many investors are coming in. The year 2019 is much better than the previous years, however, we may have difficulties before us, and we must address to overcome the challenges. The investment is in the upsurge and that we need to organize more forums similar to this summit 2019.
The State Counsellor, the unions ministers, the prime ministers have invited the local and foreign investors to come in and invest with trust, and that is indeed very much encouraging to the possible investors.
The assumptions and opinions viewed by some people are not correct that the local companies would have disadvantage and drawback when the foreign investors come and invest in the country.
We are the hosts and we know our country much more than the foreigners. We could work out for the greater good of the country and further development. We have our own advantages and they have their own benefits. We could combine these potentials. We have now invited the foreign investors, and that our local investors must also come forward. We need to elevate the local investors. Such forums should be organized once every six months or every year so that the intimacy and closeness could be created among the leaders and the business people. I would like to urge to conduct more summits.

U Kyaw Thet Hlaing, (Vice President, Myanmar Developer Association)
The forum is an excellent discussion as the international investors could have the entire spectrum of presentation of Myanmar by themselves at the single show. It disseminated the job opportunities in addition to the stability of the sectors in political, economy, and economic principles which is being truly encouraged by the government.
They could feel the sentiments of the public in welcoming the investors, and therefore, such forum should be organized as much as possible. Myanmar Investment Law, Rules and Myanmar Companies Law being enacted and prescribed have been spread out across the globe which needs some space and time to be convinced by the international investors.
They are sure to understand and convinced that it is worth trying to invest in Myanmar and sure to rush in on time. For the time being, we need to go on with this type of summit and presentation from time to time as much as we could.

Dr. Maung Maung Lay (Vice President of UMFCCI)
It is not the usual prototype of the past like one way lectures. See eye to eye is going on among the sellers and the buyers. Some foreign and local business people are holding on “wait and see” attitude on the shift and swing of the investment and the peace progress of the country. As state economy shifted from socialist system to a new market economic era, a lot of people just stand by and see what is actually going on. Political stability is a prerequisite and that the government is doing the best. They stepped ahead only after assessing the stability.
Unlike the previous gatherings, this Summit 2019 offers an exclusive and unique platform for the buyers and the sellers. On the part of the sellers, they showcased about (200) projects including from the regions and the states.
On the part of the buyers, the experts and the skilled persons assessed the projects and advised to their respective investors and then contemplate for further talks direct with the regions and states chief ministers, if they are desirous to do business. The officials from customs and the land records are all there, waiting for the pragmatic business deals in a single venue.
The newest way of dealing brings confidence and trust and that 2019 foreign investment indicates the upswing with the paradigm of transparency.

 

Source: Global New Light of Myanmar

State counsellor attempts to woo foreign investors

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State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi urged an audience of business bosses to invest in Myanmar in the wake of falling foreign direct investment and slowing growth, pledging to “build an investment-friendly environment”, at the first official investment conference organised by her National League for Democracy-led government intended to win support for her handling of the economy.

However, businesses were lukewarm about the speech, which did not touch upon the impact of political crises and offered few details on new reforms.

Over the last year, Myanmar’s government has been under increasing pressure to bolster the economy and support the private sector.

Approved FDI fell short of the official estimates by around 50 percent between April and October 2018, while a survey for European companies last month revealed that business confidence has fallen to a three-year low.

Source: Myanmar Times

 

Singapore channels private equity into Myanmar growth sectors

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Ascent Capital Partners, a Singapore-registered fund manager, has launched a Myanmar-focused private equity fund focusing on companies in the consumer, education, financial services, healthcare and the technology, media and telecommunications sectors in the country.
The anchor investors in the Ascent Myanmar Growth Fund I (AMGF) are U Aung Moe Kyaw, founder of Myanmar Distillery Co (MDC), which owns the Grand Royal whiskey brand, and Singapore businessman Tony Chew, who is co-founder of MDC and has been an investor in Myanmar for over 20 years. Other key investors include Singapore sovereign wealth fund Temasek, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and JG Summit Holdings, one of the largest conglomerates in the Phillippines.  AMGF will invest in a significant minority or majority stake in brown-field firms with potential for growth in the targeted sectors, Lim Chong Chong, founder and managing partner of Ascent Capital Partners.

Source: Myanmar Times

Rakhine State Investment Fair to be held magnificently in Ngapali Beach, Thandwe

Related imageWith an aim toward increasing investment opportunities in Rakhine State and to connect local businesses with potential foreign investors, a Rakhine State Investment Fair will be held magnificently in Ngapali Beach, Thandwe, said Ko Nyana Soe, Senior Research Executive of Myanmar Survey Research (MSR).

The investment fair will be led by the Rakhine State government with support from Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO), Myanmar Survey Research Co., Ltd. (MSR) and other companies.

Source: Global New Light of Myanmar

Local banks permitted to extend more mortgages

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Local banks have been permitted to allocated 5 percent of their total loan portfolio towards mortgages not exceeding three years, the Central Bank of Myanmar (CBM) said in a statement.

The CBM’s aim is to generate more growth and development in the local banking sector and create more opportunities for people to own homes.

Mortgages exceeding three years must be submitted to the CBM for approval on a case-by-case basis together with terms and conditions of the loan, the central bank stated.
Source: Myanmar Times
Central Bank permits loans without collateral at 16 percent interest rate

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Myanmar banks have been permitted to extend loans without the need for collateral at a maximum lending rate of 16 percent, the Central Bank of Myanmar (CBM) announced in a directive issued. The measures will take effect on the start of February.

Banks will be permitted to charge up to 16pc to loan money if borrowers pledge other forms of collateral or are not able to provide collateral.

Collaterals listed by the CBM are land and buildings, gold, diamonds and precious stones, savings certificates, government treasury bonds, fixed deposits, credit certifications and credit guarantees.

Source: Myanmar Times

Value of trade on YSX drops in 2018

Image result for yangon stock exchangeThe value of share trading on the Yangon Stock Exchange in 2018 declined to K11.5 billion from K22 billion in 2017, according to data from the YSX. While five-listed companies traded 2.3 million shares in 2018, four-listed companies traded 2.6 million shares in 2017.

In 2018, the stock trading value touched a high of K1.5 billion in August, and reached an all-time low of K666 million in June.

In 2018, the YSX doubled stock trade matching times from two to four a day. The exchange also held a promotional event for investors to attract new investors and encourage existing investors to increase trade. The financial review and future prospects of companies listed on the exchange were discussed at the event.

Source: Global New Light of Myanmar

23 factories permitted to export wild-caught fish, prawn to EU market

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The number of factories in Myanmar allowed by the European Union to export naturally caught fish and prawns has increased from 21 to 23, according to the Fisheries Department.

Since 2010, 21 local factories have been allowed to export wild-caught fish to EU countries, and two more permitted factories are TT Cold Store Factory and A&N Foods (Myanmar) Co Ltd.

On December last year, EU permitted 13 factories to export 10 kinds of marine creatures including farmed fish, prawn and soft crab. Fish include various species such as carp and catfish.

Source: Eleven Myanmar

More foreign investments expected in Ayeyarwady

Image result for Ayeyarwady region investmentInvestors eyeing expansion opportunities in Myanmar might want to consider Ayeyarwady Region, where the government is now prioritising developments in the agriculture, livestock and marine, forestry, industry, infrastructure, transportation and tourism sectors, said regional chief minister U Hla Myo Aung.

The west coast of Ayeyardwady is also linked to the China-Myanmar Economic Corridor and Greater-Mekhong Subregion Project.

When complete, there will be opportunities for foreign investors to contribute to developing infrastructure such as sea ports, heavy industrial zones, factories, power transmission lines, highways and railways along the west coast, said U Htay Win, regional planning and finance minister of Ayeyawady Region.

Source: Myanmar Times

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