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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs   18 July 2013  

Myanmar a ‘golden opportunity' for VN firms

With many of its current options stagnant, Vietnamese investors have been actively considering investment opportunities in Myanmar.

Tran Bac Ha, chairman of the Association of Vietnamese Business Investors in Myanmar (AVIM) and chairman of the Bank for Investment and Development of Viet Nam (BIDV) made the statement.

At a conference to discuss Myanmar investment and trade promotion activities held in Ha Noi on Monday, Ha said Viet Nam had 23 businesses operating in Myanmar, a marked increase from 2009 when the figure was just two.

Furthermore, four Vietnamese enterprises' projects had been granted licences in the country, with a total investment of around US$600 million, he added. Nearly $440 million of the amount was invested by Hoang Anh Gia Lai Group in an exclusive apartment complex.

Ha said another 18 Vietnamese projects had completed licence application procedures for Myanmar with a further estimated investment of more than $600 million in banking, agriculture, industrial crops, garments and building materials.

The bilateral trade turnover between the two countries has increased rapidly with a growth rate of 60 per cent in the period 2009-12.

Several fairs organised by Vietnamese businesses in Myanmar sold all of their products, showing that Vietnamese goods were popular with the country's people, Ha said.

He backed the ADB's comments that Myanmar was the last golden opportunity in Asia for foreign investors.

AVIM has already dispatched 50 delegations and nearly 1,500 business representatives to Myanmar for market surveys and collaboration missions.

The bank is eager to become an institutional investment pioneer for investment in Myanmar and support Vietnamese businesses bold enough to recognise the country's potential, while is working to establish a joint banking venture in Myanmar.

However, Ha said Vietnamese should clarify their long-term investment plans in Myanmar as the country had been attractive to many markets, sparking competition for trade opportunities.

Nguyen Van Trung, deputy head of the Ministry of Planning and Investment's Foreign Investment Agency said the Government, agencies and businesses had always endeavoured to develop socio-economic conditions in countries where they invest.

We would support businesses in completing procedures to apply for an investment license in Myanmar, he said.

He added that Viet Nam and Myanmar had signed a number of Memorandum of Understandings which would be a foundation for investment in the country.

He expected Myanmar would provide favourable conditions for Viet Nam to facilitate Vietnamese businesses' investment, especially in the banking sector.

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This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

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