Onion exports to pause

Since the domestic price for onions is higher than the export price, exports will pause for a while, according to Khin Han, the chairperson of the Bayintnaung Wholesale Centre.

“The exports will resume when prices change,” he said.

The price of a viss (1.6kg) of small onions rose from Ks350 (US$0.3) to Ks700, and that of big onions from Ks700 to Ks1,000.

Meanwhile, a tonne of exported small onions costs US$330 and big onions US$500.

Rice exports to be suspended to stabilise prices

Myanmar will suspend its rice exports until September 15 in an attempt to stabilise rice prices, the Myanmar Rice Federation (MRF) announced on Monday.

MRF chairman Dr Soe Tun posted a notice on his Facebook page saying the Myanmar Rice Merchants Association reached an agreement on the suspension of rice exports until September 15, the date of the monsoon harvest, and resolved to support the stabilisation of rice prices.

Stock exchange entry criteria to be unveiled

Deputy Finance Minister Maung Maung Thein has said that the Ministry of Finance will release the entry criteria in the first week of August for firms looking to register on the stock exchange.

The rules will be available at the Securities and Exchange Commission.

“There are international standard criteria among the list we will be producing and, since it’s about three pages long, it is not convenient to publish it in newspapers. So it will only be available at the office,” said Maung Maung Thein.

Electric train due to open this year

An electric train will start operating in Yangon in October and December, according to the Ministry of Rail Transportation.

The government and the Japan-based West Corporation sealed a deal on July 27 over the electric train that will run from Pansodan to Htawlikwae in Ahlon Township along the Yangon waterfront in the first phase in October, and from Pansodan to Lansadawn in the second phase in December. The Japanese partner will provide the specialist equipment.

The fares are still unspecified.

11 unlicensed cars seized

Eleven cars with no official documents have been seized in Bago Region from July 13-24, according to the anti-smuggling team.

The team inspected the cars near Nyaunglebin Township travelling to Yangon from Myawaddy and found they lacked licences.

The Toyotas, Hondas, Mitsubishis, Hondas, Nissans and Isuzus have been confiscated.

Customs officers claimed no import tax had been paid on the vehicles.

The authorities say cars are imported illegally from Thailand and China almost every month.

In June, nine vehicles were confiscated at the Myawaddy gate.

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.