Sep 2, 2014

Eight companies given nod to import LNG

The Ministry of Energy ministry gave permission to eight companies to import liquefied natural gas (LNG) on August 7, sources said.

The eight companies are Asia World, Myanmar LPGG, Universal Energy, Kaung Htet Myanmar, Yuan Yuan, Infinite Benevolence Trading, Standard Family and Forward General Trading.

On August 23, five of them jointly imported 1,780 tonnes of liquefied natural gas by a tanker, sources said. The imported liquefied gas is being stored at state-owned Thanlyin oil refinery.

On July 1 the ministry announced a tender for private companies to import the LNG. Ministry officials said there was not enough gas to supply new gas-fired power plants, particularly four gas-fired plants planned for Yangon Region

Source: Eleven Weekly Media

Myanmar Business News in Brief (contribution by Myanmar Business Today)

Bank to lend to gems industry to open soon
A Gems Development Public Bank will be established soon to lend to business people from the industry, local media quoted Myanmar Gems Merchants Association Chairman Yone Mu as saying. There are about two dozen local private banks in Myanmar at the moment.

Japan FDI to increase in current fiscal year
Japanese foreign direct investment (FDI) into Myanmar during the present fiscal year, which started on April 1, will be much more than last year, especially in the SME and infrastructure sectors, local media quoted Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry Chairman Win Aung as saying at a recent forum. Total Japanese FDI in the first five months of this fiscal year was $327 million, more than during the same period in the previous fiscal year.

Sugar Development Public Co to sell up to 200,000 shares
Myanmar Sugar Development Public Co, established in March, will sell up to 200,000 shares. Sales started starting on August 26 at K11,000 ($11.36) a share, local media quoted Managing Director Win Htay of the company as saying. The company had sold 300,000 shares before its incorporation as a public limited company in March.

Total forex reserves estimated at over $5b
Myanmar’s total foreign exchange reserves is estimated at just over $5 billion, local media quoted Zaw Oo, the president’s economic adviser, as saying. The central bank said last September that forex reserves were at $7.6 billion. Over $5 billion is just enough to meet five months’ imports.

Rice exports up 25pc on Russian demand
Rice exports from Myanmar have risen more than 25 percent this fiscal year, according to the latest figures from the Ministry of Commerce. Between April 1 and August 15, $196 million worth of rice has been exported, up $57 million from the same period last fiscal year, the ministry said, attributing the rise to increased demand for steamed rice from Russia. Rice exports rose to 1.33 million tonnes worth $528 million in fiscal year 2012-13, but dropped to 1 million tonnes last fiscal, fetching $380 million.

Airbus taps Myanmar’s tourism
Airbus Helicopters Southeast Asia says Airbus hopes to sell or lease helicopters to tourism service operators in Myanmar. Airbus Helicopters Southeast Asia vice president, Lionel Sinai-Sinelnikoff, told local media that Airbus hopes to supply helicopters for sightseeing trips similar to what is offered by hot air balloons at Bagan.

Indian Gov’t plans to import 500,000 tonne rice from Myanmar
The Indian government is planning to import 500,000 tonnes of rice from Myanmar to meet its Public Distribution System (PDS) requirements of two north-eastern states, Tripura and Mizoram. This comes in the wake of likely disruption of rice supply to these states due to the proposed railway gauge conversion work starting October 1. It is for the first time in decades that the country will import rice in such significant quantities for PDS purpose. The idea is to import from the neighbouring country for a year, as the mega block would likely exist for that period of time.

Source: Myanmar Business Today

Sep 1, 2014

ProPak Myanmar 2014 & Plastics & Rubber Myanmar 2014 – Driving Industry Forward

ProPak Myanmar 2014 and Plastics & Rubber Myanmar 2014 opens today, and will run for 3 show days from 4 to 6 September, at the Myanmar Convention Centre (MCC Hall), Yangon. Organised by Bangkok Exhibition Services (BES) Ltd, An Allworld Exhibitions member.

ProPak Myanmar 2014 and Plastics & Rubber Myanmar 2014 are 2 important international trade exhibitions that will drive industry forward. Helping to grow and support local industry to develop and realise its true potential for processed and packaged food, drink and pharmaceutical products.

Myanmar is an agricultural land. Agriculture is a key sector of Myanmar economy and contributes approx. 58% of the country’s GDP and 48% of its exports. Myanmar has rapidly emerged as one of Asia’s newest and brightest frontier markets with forecasted GDP growth of 7% per annum over the next 5 years and the development and modernisation of its food, drink and pharmaceutical related industries can present many great opportunities for both economic and social development.

Currently Myanmar’s food exports are predominately raw materials including rice, beans, pulses, fish and seafood and with international sanctions being lifted exports will increase significantly and present many more and new opportunities for processed and packaged products.

As business in Myanmar transforms so will its middle class with higher incomes and demand for new, safer and more hygienic food, drink and pharmaceutical products. With this increasing demand comes the need for new machines, technology and services and ProPak Myanmar 2014 and Plastics & Rubber Myanmar 2014 will present this and more to the industry.

ProPak Myanmar 2014, is the first international processing & packaging trade event for the food, drink and pharmaceutical industries in Myanmar. Held together with Plastics & Rubber Myanmar 2014, the first international plastics and rubber materials and technology trade exhibition for Myanmar.

Together, these events will present over 185 exhibitors from 23 countries, 3 international pavilions from Singapore, Taiwan and Thailand and the first national conference for the development of food science and technology in Myanmar.

The line-up of exhibitors includes world-renowned companies including; ABC Compressors, Absolute Packaging and Automation, Amut, Bangkok Glass, Bericap, Bush Vacumm, Delmax Machinery, Gardner Denver, German Engineering and Machinery, Henkel, Hopak Machinery, Ishida, KHS, KWT Machine Systems, Melchers Techexport, Modern-Pak, Nippon Pack, Piovan, Premier Tech Chronos, Rieckermann, Sanko Machinery, Sidel, Sumitomo Heavy Industries, V.F. Korea Corp, Winner Inter Plas, Wolf Verpackungsmachinen and many many more.

The first national conference on the development of food science and technology 2014 will present an international programme including speakers from Australia, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand. Organised by the Food Science & Technology Association (FoSTA), Myanmar and Bangkok Exhibition Services (BES) Ltd the first edition of the conference is offered free-of-charge to industry delegates in order to present the best opportunities for education and networking to an underdeveloped industry with huge potential.

These events are supported by the Myanmar Industries Association (MIA), Myanmar Food Processors and Exporters Association (MFPEA) and the Food Science and Technology Association (FoSTA), Myanmar as well as many other industry associations.

ProPak Myanmar 2014 and Plastics & Rubber Myanmar 2014 are “MUST-ATTEND” events for the industry. Do not miss your chance to visit ProPak Myanmar 2014 and Plastics & Rubber Myanmar 2014, taking place Thursday 4th to Saturday 6th September 2014 at MCC Hall. Opening hours are 9am to 5pm every day.
To visit ProPak Myanmar 2014 and Plastics & Rubber Myanmar please come to MCC Hall and register on-site.

For more information please contact:

Bangkok Exhibition Services (BES) Ltd
Contact PR Executive: Ms. Wantita Porntanawong (Bow)
Tel.: +662 615-1255 ext. 123

Information Matrix
Contact: Htet Wai Zaw
Tel.: +95 1 513 515 – 519

ProPak Myanmar 2014 and Plastics & Rubber Myanmar 2014
Date: 4 - 6 September 2014
Opening Hours: 9am – 5pm
Venue: Myanmar Convention Centre (MCC Hall), Yangon
Website: /

Aug 31, 2014

Myanmar’s solar ambitions kickstarted with $480 million ACO pact

Myanmar will expand its sources of clean energy through an agreement with ACO Investment Group, a US-based private-equity fund focusing on Asian emerging markets, to develop two solar-energy plants.

The project, consisting of two 150-megawatt solar facilities, is valued at $480 million, according to a release from the Office of the US Trade Representative. The plants are expected to account for 10 per cent to 12 per cent of Myanmar’s power generation when completed in 2016, the release said.

The undertaking comes as the country begins to put a policy structure in place to encourage renewable energy.

ACO co-founder Hari Achuthan, a former Credit Suisse Group AG banker, said last year that the fund is betting $700 million on Myanmar as the country offers investors the best growth opportunity in Southeast Asia. In July 2012, the US dropped economic sanctions against Myanmar after President Thein Sein began a democratic process that elected opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi to parliament after 15 years of house arrest.

ACO expects the solar project to create 400 construction jobs in Myingyan and Meiktila districts, where the two plants are expected to be located. An additional 100 permanent jobs will be created from the project, which will be managed by Convalt Energy LLC, a portfolio company owned by ACO.

US Trade Representative Michael Froman was scheduled to lead a signing ceremony today for the agreement, which is between ACO and the Burma Ministry of Electric Power.

Investment push
US President Barack Obama is deepening US trade and investment ties with Asia-Pacific nations and is encouraging the building of infrastructure necessary for the emerging countries to grow, according to a June 4 speech made by US Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker.

“Efforts like these support the ambitious definition of development that is at the heart of President Obama’s trade agenda,” Froman said in the release.

The US Foreign Commercial Service has expanded its footprint in Asia by opening new offices in Wuhan in China, and Rangoon in Burma — also known as Yangon in Myanmar — to promote partnerships in the region, according to Pritzker’s speech.

Asia-Pacific will be an engine of global growth in the next decade, The region’s nations will import nearly $10 trillion of goods and services by 2022, nearly 2 1/2 times today’s level, Pritzker said.

Mandalay region

ACO’s project is the first-ever solar energy development in the Mandalay region. It will help Myanmar provide stable energy because the country depends heavily on hydropower, which decreases in output during the dry season, the release said.

In May, the Asian Development Bank announced a plan to bring power to 25 off-grid villages in the country through a $2 million grant project to expand clean energy use.

Myanmar, the Southeast Asian nation that exited 50 years of military rule in 2011, signed a foreign investment bill in 2012 to woo overseas corporations into spending more in the former army-run nation. Companies scouting opportunities in Myanmar or signing development agreements include Best Western International Inc., the world’s second-largest closely held hotel chain; Coca-Cola Co, Unilever NV and Visa Inc.

Source: Eco-Business

Aug 30, 2014

Russia to Boost Trade With Myanmar to $500 Million a Year

Economic Development Minister Alexei Ulyukayev on Friday proposed increasing trade with Myanmar to $500 million a year by 2017 after he signed an agreement with his Myanmar counterpart to set up a bilateral trade and economic commission, RIA Novosti reported.

At a time of deteriorating relations between Russia and the West over the Ukraine crisis, the Kremlin has been looking to build economic and diplomatic relationships with developing Asian nations.

Russia's current trade levels with Myanmar sit at about $114 million a year.

"The agreement signed today will be the basis for further economic, scientific and technical cooperation between Russia and Myanmar in the long term," Ulyukayev was quoted as saying after the signing ceremony in Naypyidaw, the south-east Asian nation's capital.

The first meeting of the newly formed bilateral trade commission was attended by representatives from over 60 Russian companies, including oil-producer Bashneft, state-owned United Aircraft Corporation and its subsidiary, Sukhoi Civilian Aircraft.

Source: Moscow Times

Aug 29, 2014

Exports of beans and pulses reach US$400 million

Exports of beans and pulses reached almost US$400 million from the beginning of the fiscal year to August 15, with the amount totalling about 520,000 tonnes, the Ministry of Commerce said.

A total of 520,748 tonnes of beans and pulses were exported from April 1 to August 15 and their export value was $399.54 million, according to preliminary data from the ministry.

Green gram and green peas, also known as Mung beans, were the top export items in the category. About 400,000 tonnes were exported via sea routes and the rest by land routes. In dollar terms, exports by sea were valued at $296 million, while exports by land totaled $102.9 million.

The ministry also reported that total agricultural product exports exceeded more than $870 million, including rice and corn.

Most exports are to other Asian countries, though the country is beginning to crack some western markets. About 95 per cent of total trade last year was with other Asian countries. Total trade reached $23 billion last year.

Source: Eleven Weekly Media

Aug 26, 2014

Foreign investors permitted full ownership of more businesses

The Myanmar Investment Commission (MIC) has expanded the list of businesses that can be owned 100 per cent by foreign investors, as the country aims to attract more foreign investment.

In an August 14 directive, the MIC – which oversees foreign investment in the country – said that foreign investors with joint ventures in 30 industries, including beverage and small and medium-sized power generating, can boost their ownership to 100 per cent.

Full foreign ownership can be granted to 43 joint venture businesses with endorsement from relevant ministries.

Aside, it defines 21 industries that must be operated under special terms and conditions. For instance, cigarette production is permitted on the condition that the investors must use at least 50 per cent of local content and 90 per cent of the output must be exported. The Industry Ministry will supervise the industry.

Full ownership is now granted in several areas, including mining, construction, construction material production, jewellery products, coal exports, hydropower and coal-fired power generating.

The oil and gas sector will remain a restricted area: all foreign investors must operate the business in Myanmar only through joint ventures with the Energy Ministry.

Under the Foreign Investment Law, the ministry must hold partial control on the construction of containers, ports, pipelines and related developments to facilitate the export/import, transportation, warehousing, and distribution of oil and gas. Oil exploration also falls into this category, requiring the ministry to hold a stake in offshore oilrigs and chemical factories.

The August 14 directive replaces one issued on January 31, 2013.

Source: Eleven Weekly Media