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Newsletter | April 2018

News | Inside GMBC | Upcoming Events

Myanmar Newsletter

Dear Reader, 

Welcome to the April Edition of our Newsletter. 

The heat is on in Myanmar and we all celebrated the Myanmar New Year Festival with water splashing to cool us down. We would like to highlight the very interesting development on the regulatory side in respect to insurance business and the announcement of the Myanmar Government to invest substantially into upgrading infrastructure. Both developments are promising and would open interesting opportunities - also for German companies. 

Please also note the Joint company exhibition of the Federal Republic of Germany at the next Construction, Power & Mining Myanmar - the largest 3-in-1 industry event of its kind in Myanmar from 11 to 13 October 2018.  For details please see below - we would be delighted to welcome you there.

If you wish to receive more frequent information, please like us on facebook or visit our website!

Yours truly,

Martin Klose,
Delegate of German Industry and Commerce in Myanmar


Political, economic and legal news

  • Insurance reforms
    Myanmar’s insurance market is about to open for foreign insurers. This also includes a permission for insurers to act as insurance brokers and agents. To enter the Myanmar market, foreign insurance companies must already run a local Representative Office. Myanmar is heavily undersupplied with regard to modern insurance services.

    Linkicon  More information

  • Education sector opens up for foreign investment
    With Notification 7/2018 published in April, the Myanmar Investment Commission allows public and private foreign organizations to invest in private schools, vocational training schools and private higher education in Myanmar.

    Linkicon  More information

  • Criteria for the investments at electricity and fossil fuels sector
    The Ministry of Electricity and Energy has specified Notification 15/2017 by publishing a detailled list regarding documents and information that need to be submitted when applying for Ministry approval of investments.

    Linkicon  More information

  • New standard criteria for the agriculture sector
    Investors interested to enter the Myanmar agricultural sector (e.g. fishing, livestock farming, lab testing and veterinary products) can now find further guidance on business activity requirements in a standard criteria list published by the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation.

    Linkicon  More information

  • Myanmar’s economy is expected to grow again
    The Asian Development Bank expects Myanmar’s economy growth at a rate of 6.8% in 2017-18 compared to 5.9% in the fiscal year before. The ASEAN region in comparison is expected to grow at 5.2% over the same period. The ADB bases its forecast on expectations of an increase in the agricultural and tourism sectors as well as on industry and services growth. FDI will keep playing a central role in that context.

    Linkicon  More information

Investment and business news

  • New competition for Heineken and Carlsberg on Myanmar’s beer market
    Through a joint venture with Myanmar’s Shwe Than Lwin, Fraser & Neave from Singapore will be operating again on Myanmar’s beer market. The JV company will be called Emerald Brewery Myanmar Ltd. and Shwe Than Lwin (through its affiliate Than Lwin Aye Yar Industrial Production & Construction Company) will hold the majority stake.

    Linkicon  More information

  • USD 60 million Myanmar investment by Asia AVA Gas Company
    Asia AVA Gas Company wants to invest USD 60 million in a joint venture project with state-owned Myanma Petrochemical Enterprise (MPE). The plan is to built a jetty, storage tanks, loading and unloading facilities and a gas-filtering plant in Yangon. Last year, Elite Company also completed construction of a jetty and storage facilities at the Thilawa Special Economic Zone. Myanmar officially imports 4,000 tonnes of LPG, mostly from Singapore, per month.

    Linkicon  More information

  • Myanmar Transparency Report 2018
    The Myanmar Centre for Responsible Business has launched the fourth report on Transparency in Myanmar Enterprises. The top three companies ranking highest for disclosure are: First Myanmar Investment Group (91%), City Mart Holdings (73%), and Serge Pun & Associates (69%). The report shows that there is a strong correlation between top scores and international investment, foremost through the International Finance Corporation.

    Linkicon  More information

  • New Yangon City to mark a new major urban-industrial development in West Yangon
    The New Yangon Development Company has been launched in March 2018 with the aim of turning a western part of Yangon, the area located between Hlaingtharyar and Dala, into a new major economic hub. The NYDC is 100% owned by the regional government. The initial budget of over USD 1.5 billion shall fund the construction of five village townships, two bridges, 10 sq. km of industrial estate, a power plant and wastewater treatment plants.

    Linkicon  More information

Since 2015, the German Myanmar Business Chamber (GMBC) is the official membership organization of German businesses in Myanmar. It provides a platform for exchange, dialogue and cooperation for Myanmar and German businesses bringing together corporate activities and strengthening the German business community in Myanmar. The GMBC organizes events on a regular base covering important policy issues as well as interesting business cases. Moreover, these events are made to extend and improve the network of its members. Visit the GMBC website for more information.
This section introduces new members and covers recent activities of GMBC members in Myanmar. If you are a GMBC member and are keen to see your company featured in this section, please contact GMBC.

GMBC member activities
  • Member news
    • Rose Garden Hotel, Yangon has been awarded Business Hotel of the Year Myanmar by Corporate Insider. This comes after the hotel has been awarded the TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence and the Luxury Travel Award for the second consecutive year in 2018. More information
    • Yoma Strategic and Partners launch sales of Peninsula Residences Yangon. More information
    • Hilton arrives in Mandalay with picturesque Hillside Hotel. More information
    • KfW supports refinancing of Myanmar’s SMEs: The German Government is supportiing small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Myanmar with EUR 15.3 million grant funds. The money is distributed through KfW in two phases. During the first phase, EUR 4.45 million was distributed. In the second phase another EUR 10.85 million shall be transferred. KfW channels the grant funds through the Ministry of Planning and Finance to CB Bank and Apex Bank.
  • Events in May
    • 10 May: German Asparagus Dinner at Savoy Hotel
    • 23 May: AMCHAM & Europcar Joint Chambers Networking at Burma Bistro
    • June (date tbc): Joint Networking with AMCHAM,Chatrium Royal Lake Yangon

General Information

Energy solutions
In preparation for the upcoming AHK business trip and the 2nd Myanmar-German Renewable Energies Symposium in September 2018, RENAC will host an information event in Berlin. The event on 17 May 2018 will brief interested German companies on photovoltaics and biomass energy in Myanmar with a focus on industrial projects.

More information on the event and registration
be4energy GmbH is looking for partners
The be4energy GmbH, a German electronics and software system developer for Renewable Energy projects, is looking for suitable partners that can provide electrical engineering services in Myanmar and possibly also in Vietnam and Cambodia. In cooperation with the German Agency for International Cooperation (GIZ), which is planning to engage in several development projects, theses partners are asked for following services: measurement of load profiles in low voltage grids (e.g. generators, renewable energy installations, commercial and industrial loads), energy and power demand analysis of installations, electric system documentation of installations.
If interested or for further inquiries please contact: be4energy GmbH, in Berlin / Germany
Mr. Stefan Galler, s.galler@be4energy.com


Messe Düsseldorf
Become part of the joint company exhibition of the Federal Republic of Germany at the next Construction, Power & Mining Myanmar - the largest 3-in-1 industry event of its kind in Myanmar from 11 to 13 October 2018 at the brand new Yangon Convention Center (YCC).

Your advantages:
  • Reduced participation fee for system stand
  • Higher level of attention due to the uniform framework design “Made in Germany“
  • Presentation of your company through the website and the official flyer for the German participation
  • Organizational and technical handling as well as supervision by Messe Düsseldorf GmbH, also on location
  • Use of the official information stand with internet access and a lounge with catering

Deadline for registration is 15 May 2018
Contact: Ms. Nicola Otto
AHK job vacancy service
Getting your office started in Myanmar and looking for qualified and experienced staff?
We are offering a new service to you! We will publish your job vacancies on our website, Facebook, LinkedIn and in our newsletter, helping you to find the right employee by reaching out to 2,000+ local and international experts. Advertisements can be booked on a monthly base. GMBC members get a discount. For further information, please check the full service description on our website and feel free to contact us.

AHK tender information service
This month, we have successfully launched a new tender information service. This special tender newsletter informs you in a timely manner about tenders opened by the government or international organizations in Myanmar - including information only available via hard copy and Myanmar language. This is particularly ideal for companies not yet represented on the ground but eager to set foot in Myanmar. Please find more information on our website or contact us by e-mail.

Key figures for Myanmar
 GDP growth (est. 2017) 6.4%, GDP: 72 billion USD
 Population (2017) 53 million
 Export goods (2016) 11 billion USD; China, Thailand, India
 Import goods (2016) 16 billion USD; China, Singapore, Thailand
 Export services (2015) 3.86 billion USD
 Import services (2015) 2.44 billion USD
 Current account balance,
 % of GDP (2016)1
 Exports to Germany goods (2016)2 172.4 million USD; apparel, footwear
 Imports from Germany goods (2016)2 76.8 million USD; machinery, vehicles
 Inflation rate 6.9%
 Unemployment rate3 0.8% (2015, ILO), 4% (2014, Myanmar Census)
 Aggregate measure of labor underutilization 6.9% (2015, ILO)
 Central Bank interest rate
 Lending/deposit rate 13% lending, 8% deposit
 Exchange rate (May 2018) 1 EUR ≈ 1,607 MMK

According to the IMF, the actual deficit may be significantly lower as exports are not always recorded.

2 Using mirror trade data gives significantly higher imports (155.8 million USD) and exports (358.8 million USD).
3 While the census asks 3 questions about the labor force, and only one specifically about unemployment, the ILO survey asks stepwise several questions about employment, which leads, eventually, to a much lower number of unemployed. There is no significant difference in the workforce.
Sources: Trade data: UN Comtrade and UNCTAD (FDI), Economic data: WB and IMF, CBM for interest rates

Upcoming Events

May 10, 2018 | Yangon, Myanmar
German Asparagus Dinner
May 17, 2018 | Berlin, Germany
Informationsveranstaltung zu Eigenversorgung mit Erneuerbaren Energien (Solar und Biomasse) für Industrie und Gewerbe in Myanmar
July 12 to 15, 2018| Nonthaburi, Bangkok, Thailand
For the first time, Germany's world-famous trade fair for organic products is coming to South East Asia
Linkicon More Information

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AHK Myanmar
Martin Klose
Uniteam Building, 6 floor, 84 Pan Hlaing Street Sanchaung TS
11111 Yangon

+95 9 4506 293 64