Aug 24, 2016

Looking for reliable suppliers of palm oil

RBD palm olein (or vegetable palm oil) CP10

Packing: 25 litre Jerry Can

Quantity: 100mt

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Market Expert for Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) products can help you enter the market or expand business in Myanmar

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Market leader in light-weight industrial conveyor belting looking for Myanmar distributors and service partners

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Aug 22, 2016

Invitation for Expression of Interest (EOI) for JV cooperation in High Voltage Ceramic Insulator Factory

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Aug 19, 2016

Invitation for Expression of Interest (EOI) for Public Private Partnership (PPP) for production of modern tractors

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Aug 15, 2016

Myanmar's first tech accelerator is propelling forward the next generation of start ups

On the 11th floor of a downtown Yangon high-rise, a crowd of budding entrepreneurs listens attentively to advice on how to successfully pitch investors. Andy Annett, managing director of TODAY Ogilvy & Mather Myanmar, gives tips on public speaking and branding, while Aung Sithu Kyaw, CEO of market consultancy Xavey, describes how to structure a pitch deck.

It’s a scene not so dissimilar to what happens in Silicon Valley and other tech capitals, yet it would have been unimaginable in Myanmar five years ago, when less than one percent of all Burmese had access to the web.

Nowadays, thanks to Phandeeyar, the 6,000 square foot tech hub that’s organizing the event, it’s an almost weekly one. Buoyed by a booming economy and a youthful population of over 52 million, Myanmar’s startup ecosystem is thriving. Phandeeyar, whose name means “creation place,” stands as one of its central nerves, and its role is bound to expand as it launches the country’s first tech accelerator.

Founded in 2014 by Australian entrepreneur David Madden, the self-described “innovation lab” emerged from one of Myanmar’s first hackathons, Code for Change, with the ambition of being a space for the tech community to come together and drive forward social innovation.

“Our overarching mission is to foster the technology ecosystem, help it grow, and help the people in the entities within this ecosystem increase their impact,” explains Jes Kaliebe Petersen, the director of Phandeeyar’s accelerator.

The launch of the Yangon tech center came simultaneously to the entrance of foreign telecoms on Myanmar’s newly liberalized market, resulting in a meteoric drop in SIM card prices and millions of new subscribers. But unlike other developing nations, Burmese mobile users overwhelmingly leapfrogged basic handsets in favor of smartphones.

“What’s happening here, it’s unprecedented,” says Petersen. “I’ve worked in other emerging markets, but I’ve never heard of anywhere else like this. There’s probably around 45 million active SIMs in the country.”

For those customers, right now, the web signifies mostly Facebook and Viber. If Phandeeyar gets its way, that will soon start changing, as it helps startups capitalize on Myanmar’s fast growing internet user base.

The Phandeeyar accelerator team (Courtesy of Phandeeyar).

Since its creation, the ICT hub has hosted over a hundred tech related events, including founder meetups, seminars, and workshops with international speakers. It collaborates actively with civil society and NGOs on how to maximize their use of data and digital advocacy, as well as on designing civic tech.

A number of tech’s heavy hitters have proven early supporters. Core backers include Ebay founder Pierre Omidyar’s philanthropic investment firm Omidyar Network, Google’s Eric Schmidt’s namesake family foundation, and George Soros’ Open Society.

“We’ve been focusing more and more on how we can support the development not only of the tech community but also of tech startups, and that’s really how the idea of the accelerator came about,” comments Jes Kaliebe Petersen.

Startups accepted into the accelerator each receive $25,000 in seed money as they undergo a 6 months training program. Fifteen to twenty startups are expected to take part across the next three years. The first cohort, which will start on September 1st and is currently being selected, will only contain around four to six teams.

“It’s really important to us that we only take in startups that we believe can actually succeed,” says Petersen. “What we are looking at is, first the quality of the team and then an ability to understand the Myanmar market.”

For the capital heavy initiative, Phandeeyar received $2 million in grant funding from Omidyar Network and is raising further funds.

“There’s a lot of startup activity in Myanmar, but all the funding they raise is outside the country, usually through investors in the region,” he notes.

According to Thar Htet, who acts as Phandeeyar’s startup coach and is the founder of IT firm Zwenexsys, local investors tend to lack an understanding of the tech world and get disappointed by its lack of quick financial returns.

“On the consumer side, things are moving really fast,” says Thar Htet. Yet, “on the infrastructure side, there a lot of challenges to be solved, like payments and logistics. But it also means good opportunities for startups.”

Source: Forbes

Myanmar offers indefinite tax waiver to export businesses

MYANMAR plans to offer an indefinite tax exemption to businesses that export 100 per cent of output, in a bid to boost the country’s exports and tackle a widening current-account deficit.

Aung Naing Oo, director-general of the Directorate of Investment and Company Administration (DICA), announced that the waiver would be for life under new investment policies. According to Aung Naing Oo, any business approved by the Myanmar Investment Commission would be allowed to enjoy multiple tax exemptions, regardless of their nature. "The new regulations look to support the current national objectives, which means refining those privileges to better suit exporters," the director-general said.

"It's not going to be three years. If they want 10 years, 20 years or 50 years, they will get full tax exemptions as long as all of their products are for export. For example, other businesses that import raw materials will need to pay customs duties. But exporters that have found a place in the international market will get refunds equivalent to the amount they paid [in taxes] while importing raw materials," said Aung Naing Oo.

An official at DICA disclosed that the exemptions would be extended to both local and foreign-owned businesses. "Regardless of the location of factories and ownership, whether locally- or foreign-owned, the factories are entitled to enjoy tax exemptions for an unlimited period, as long as they export all the products from their factories," said the official who asked not to be named.

Myanmar is in the process of enacting a new investment law, which will combine the Myanmar Citizens Investment Law and the Foreign Investment Law. Titled "The Investment Law of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar", the law was drafted in cooperation with the World Bank's financial arm, the International Finance Corporation.

One of its main aims is to facilitate investment in the country where the per-capita income of US$1,200 (Bt41,700) in 2014, was below that of most countries. To achieve that, investment constraints must be cleared so more investment leads to the creation of new jobs.

Myanmar is in dire need of export-oriented investment, as its current account deficit has kept widening due to growing imports.

In the 2015-16 fiscal year, Myanmar's exports increased only marginally but imports grew more than 10 per cent as vigorous economic growth spurred demand for consumer and capital goods. Due to the huge trade deficit, the current account deficit widened to 8.3 per cent of GDP. Asian Development Bank expects the deficit to stay as high as 7.7 per cent in the 2016-17 fiscal year despite an increase in foreign direct investment. The widening current account deficit contributed to a 26-per-cent depreciation of the kyat against US dollar during April-December 2015. In the first seven months of this year, the kyat appreciated by nearly 11 per cent.

Source: The Nation