Apr 13, 2014

Myanmar Business Network wishing you Happy Thingyan Festival and Myanmar New Year!

We thank you for all your support and contributions over the past years and hope to remain your choice for Myanmar business-related content and services.

From 14-20, 20 April we will provide limited business coverage and email reply to your inuiries due to the festivities in the country. Thank you for the understanding and cheers!

Apr 11, 2014

PTT to open 50 petrol stations in Myanmar

Once Myanmar opens this sector, PTT plans to allocate about 1.3 billion baht to open 50 petrol stations there. It now has only one station in Nay Pyi Taw and an oil depot in Yangon.

To read the full article, please click HERE

China is major investor for mineral extraction in Myanmar

China, billed as the major investor in the exploration and production of Myanmar natural resources, is also a big player for mineral extraction in Mongolia, said S. Javkhlanbaatar, the director of Invest Mongolia Agency.

China is presently the second-largest investor in Mongolia. Its investment projects include property development.

In Myanmar, China is keen to invest in the energy sector, including petroleum and natural gas, and profitable business of mineral extractions. The Chinese omit, however, to channel their investment to labour-intensive sectors which could create job opportunities for local citizens.

When asked about investment-generated job opportunities and pollution, the Mongolian director said: “We have the regulations for the foreign investors to provide jobs for 70% citizen. When it comes to pollution, we have to work with environmental assessment teams to investigate and take an action.”

Myanmar Investment Commission issued a permit for the Chinese company to form a joint venture for the refinery in Kalaw T/S, Taunggyi District, Shan State on January.

According to the Ministry of Mines, a mining permit would only be granted to the foreign investors who pass the scrutinies for environmental impact assessment (EIA) and social impact assessment (SIA).

It was reported that the foreign investment in Myanmar’s mining sector amounted to $ 2,862 million as of the last week of March, 2014.

Source: Eleven Weekly Media

Apr 10, 2014

Germany to help Myanmar carry out airport project

Germany will provide technical and financial assistance to Myanmar’s new international airport project of Hantharwaddy in Bago region, local media Weekly Eleven News reported Monday.

Two German companies Obermeyar Planen + Beraten GmbH and Gnip International have applied for pre-qualification for the construction of the Hantharwaddy International Airport, which is set to start by 2013.

The airport covering over 3,645 hectares will be the fourth of its kind in Myanmar after that of Yangon, Mandalay and Nay Pyi Taw.

Besides airport extension, Germany will also make investment in construction and maintenance of ports in Myanmar.

Germany is known as the second largest donor to Myanmar after Japan with Myanmar still owing it an estimated 700 million euro in unpaid debt, according to German sources.

Source: Xinhua

US firm inks JV deal

US-based construction firm Holloman Corporation and Myanmar’s Young Investment Group have both invested US$200 million to set up the Young Holloman Corporation in Myanmar, the firms announced.

U Thiha Aung, chairman of the Young Investment Group, said that the joint-venture will establish a cement-batching plant before investing further in construction and oil and gas.

Source: Times of Myanmar

Bukit Asam to Invest $900m in Myanmar

Indonesian State-controlled coal miner Bukit Asam expects to invest up to $900 million in Myanmar, building a number of projects there including a coal-fired power plant, its finance director said.

Achmad Sudarto said the Jakarta-based company had inked a deal with strategic partners in Myanmar, a country that is rapidly liberalizing its economy and opening up investment to foreign companies. “We have engaged with a local company there, but we cannot reveal the name yet,” he said on Thursday.

Achmad said that for the first phase of the deal, Bukit Asam would develop a 2×100-megawatt coal-fired power plant, before moving on to building another plant double the size. He said the estimated the cost for the first plant was $350 million to $450 million. The second plant would cost up to $450 million to construct.

Source: Times of Myanmar

ComBank to start Myanmar operations soon: Chairman

Commercial Bank PLC (Combank), Sri Lanka’s largest private sector bank yesterday expressed optimism of their foray into the fast emerging Southeast Asian nation, Myanmar before the third quarter of this year.

“We will open a representative office there before the third quarter of this year,” confided the bank’s Chairman Dinesh Weerakkody.

However the bank’s earlier plan was to enter this second largest Southeast Asian country before the end of 2013. The bank which appears to have cleared all the regulatory and compliance related requirements from Myanmar authorities by now are currently looking for potential sites to establish its first representative office in the highly promising country. “In fact the feasibility looks extremely good,” Weerakkody said.

Unlike in Sri Lanka, a foreign bank which seeks an entry in to Myanmar can only set up a representative office. However, probably after two years they can enter into Joint Ventures (JV) with the local banking partners.

Myanmar’s Central Bank in 2012 developed a tentative strategy to open up the domestic banking sector that comprises three phases permitting (1) private banks to run joint ventures with foreign banks (2) JV banks to establish locally incorporated 100 percent-owned subsidiaries, and (3) foreign banks to open bank branches in Myanmar (when Myanmar joins – ASEAN Economic Community in 2015).

Currently there are at least 34 foreign banks’ representative offices operating in Myanmar, and the sector is dominated by the four state banks accounting for two third of the total banking sector asset base, but are said to be struggling keep pace with the modernization and growth of the private sector peers. Combank’s Myamar entry is coming up after eleven years in to its first overseas venture – that is Bangladesh in 2003 which is now thriving with 18 delivery points. In 2013, 13 percent of the Rs.10.5 billion profit after tax was contributed by its Bangladeshi operations. Queried as to why Myanmar amid other regional counterparts, Weerakkody said Myanmar would add value to the bank’s portfolio and it would also complement its existing customer base that do business in Myanmar.

In addition, plenty of visitors from its bordering country Bangladesh too visit Myanmar for business and various other purposes.

Close and renewed ties with United States by Myanmar in recent times has attracted international investor attention to this promising country.

Source: Daily Mirror Sri Lanka