Myanmar Monitor


Bank workers in Myanmar

Photo Credit: Myanmar Times

Economy, Investment and Trade

Myanmar to deepen capital markets
(7 August 2017) Myanmar is planning to allow trading of Government Treasury Bonds on the Yangon Stock Exchange (YSX). According to YSX Senior Executive Manager U Thet Tun Oo, negotiations are in progress with the Central Bank of Myanmar and the Budget Department to trade government bonds on the YSX but there is no confirmation on when it will begin. If successfully implemented, the wider bond trading will open up new sources of funding for the government, provide opportunities for investor and encourage foreigners to participate in the equity market through engagement in interbank lending.
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Myanmar plans to buy electricity from China
(5 August 2017) Myanmar is in preliminary talks to buy electricity from China which will link Myanmar’s national power grid to Yunnan’s electricity network. Currently, rural Yunnan generates 85% of electricity from hydropower and channels it to several neighbouring countries including Vietnam, Laos and Myanmar. Since the emergence of the Belt and Road Initiative, Beijing has been actively involved in energy projects to cater Myanmar’s growing demand for electricity.
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Foreign & internal affairs

Mon State loses nearly US$300 000 worth of rubber due to low quality
(8 August 2017) Mon State lost nearly US$300,000 in rubber exports due to low quality rubber production and the industry’s dependency on exports to China, according to Mon State Minister of Agriculture, Livestock, Transportation and Communications U Tun Htay. The state produces more than 100,000 tons of rubber annually or 49% of the nation’s total output. In July 2016, head of Mon State Agricultural Department U Kyi Soe visited Japan and negotiated with Japanese agencies to assist in the production of high quality rubber which can be exported to Japan.

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Foreign & Internal Affairs

Myanmar reviews its Democracy at Democratic Transition Forum
(9 August 2017) The Myanmar Democratic Transition Forum led by Myanmar State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi and Minister of Information Dr Pe Myint will be held from 11 August to 13 August 2017. The forum is a stock-taking exercise for the country’s fledgling democracy. Thirty speakers from various countries will be brought in to review the progress of the country’s democracy and discuss roadmaps for the country’s future. The event will also host ambassadors from many nations alongside UN functionaries and prominent scholars specialising in Myanmar.
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Yangon Chief Minister accused of cronyism
(6 August 2017) Yangon’s chief minister Phyo Min Thein is being accused of cronyism and lack of accountability by regional lawmakers as he approved two deals to import 2000 buses from China which cost over US$100 million for Myanmar’s first major infrastructure project under Aung San Suu Kyi’s leadership. The buses were deemed as low quality by engineers and are expected to wear out sooner than stipulated international standards. The approval of these deals raised questions on Phyo Min Thein’s credibility and has drawn criticism on the lack of transparency in the country’s public procurement process.
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