Real Estate Market still quiet

The real estate market in Myanmar has seen very little activity over the last few months, partly because of the upcoming general election, agents said.

The Myanmar kyat’s weakening against US dollar and the rise in gold prices has also contributed to the sluggishness of the real estate market.

“We cannot deny that the market is quiet, but properties are still being bought and sold in some places, and other places are doing fine, especially where projects are being implemented,” said Than Oo, chairperson of Myanmar Real Estate Service Association on July 25.

S Korea to help set up trade body

The Ministry of Commerce is establishing a trade body with the help of South Korea in an attempt to boost exports, according to U Thein Myint Wai, assistant commerce director.

The “Myantra” is being established with the Kotra, Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency, in the aim of implementing a national export strategy.

UK accountants struggle to audit ministries

London-based Moore Stephens chartered accountants are facing difficulties collecting data from Myanmar’s ministries, according to the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) coordination office.

Moore Stephens is collecting data on the tax revenues of the ministries of energy, mines, finance, national planning and the Office of the Auditor General to assist Myanmar’s bid to join the EITI, an international body that monitors the extraction industries.

Plans laid for 20-year Ngwesaung development project

Plans for a 20-year Ngwesaung development project have been drawn and will be implemented in four five-year phases, in order of importance, according to Ministry of Hotels and Tourism.

The socioeconomic development plan is designed to urbanise the beach village, introducing infrastructural development such as electricity, telecommunications and even a small airport, as well as environmental conservation regulations.

Central Bank warns against dollar speculation

According to state-owned newspapers, Kyaw Kyaw Maung, chairman of the Central Bank of Myanmar (CBM), has persuaded banks to not play the dollar market and accept plans to impose strict investigations.

A meeting in Nay Pyi Taw attended by representatives of the government, CBM and private banks discussed increasing exchange rate between the kyat and dollar.

Kyaw Kyaw Maung warned against deviation from the CBM’s regulations and to stay away from currency manipulation.

Japanese insurance company launches business in Myanmar

Japanese company Sompo Japan Nipponkoa Insurance announced the launching of its general insurance services at Thilawa Special Economic Zone.
It was the first foreign company to be granted a license on May 25 this year to open the insurance business.

Kyat continues to weaken

The kyat hit Ks1,290 against the US dollar on Monday although the Central Bank of Myanmar’s official reference rate was Ks1,230, according to a money market report.
The black market rate jumped as the CBM announced the official rate had risen from Ks1,125 to Ks1,200 to match the unofficial price.
The reference exchange rate was stable at Ks1,125 from July 3 to July 10 but it rose to Ks1,200 on July 12.

Thai goods become more pricey in Myanmar

The recent slump in the kyat has raised the prices of goods imported from Thailand particularly vehicles, said Myanmar traders.
A businessman dealing with a vehicle export-import business said that a car priced at Ks15 million two months ago, based on the baht-denominated value of Bt500,000, is now selling for Ks18 million.

Myanmar-Thailand border trade hindered by customs restrictions

Myeik – Myanmar merchants have faced difficulty trading at the Mawtaung border gate, located on the Myanmar-Thailand border in Myeik District, Taninthayi Region.
The Myanmar government opened its side of the gate on May 8, 2013. The Thai government opened a temporary border gate at Singkhon Pass on May 23 this year.

Thailand trade post fails to deliver

Myeik - The new trading post linking Myiek in Myanmar’s Taninthayi Region and Thailand’s Prachuap Khiri Khan still fails to live up to its promises, said Myanmar traders.
They have complained about customs restrictions and bribery on both sides of the border.