Vietnamese firm to unveil Yangon development in October

Offices and a five-star hotel on Kabar Aye Pagoda Road in Yangon that are being built with investment from the Hoang Anh Gia Lai Group from Vietnam will reportedly open by the end of October, according to the Ministry of Hotels and Tourism.

The offices are due to be completed in May with the development also including apartments that are due to be finished in 2017, the ministry says.

The project is employing 2,600 locals and 400 foreign experts, said Vo Truong Son of the group during his meeting with tourism minister Htay Aung.

Global oil price down but not local prices

Despite the fall in global oil price from US$94 per barrel in January 2014 to US$50 in the beginning of January this year, local petroleum and diesel prices remained the same.

“Although the global oil price has dropped sharply, local fuel prices are not falling. Usually when the global oil price increases, local prices should also follow suit. But local business people seem to focus much on benefit. They should cut the fuel prices when global oil price decreases so that it can match the international market,” said Dr Khin Maung Nyo, a writer.

Myanmar achieves 80% of border trade goal

YANGON – The Myanmar government aims to earn more than US$6 billion through legal border commerce this fiscal year, and thus far, it has achieved nearly 80 per cent of that goal, according to the Ministry of Commerce.

Myanmar has opened 15 border trade centres to facilitate legal trading with China, Thailand, India and Bangladesh.

Merchants can trade at border trade centres by applying for trade licenses and Individual Trade Certificates (ITC).

Natural gas prices not to rise, says MOGE

The Myanma Oil and Gas Enterprise (MOGE) has denied a rumour that it will increase the price of compressed natural gas and promised to make an official announcement when prices are to increase.

“The rumuor that gas prices will be raised is not true. We will officially inform the public through online social media when we plan to increase it,” said Hla Htay Win, the general manager of MOGE.

Last December, the All Bus Lines Control Committee requested that the Yangon Region government supply more gas for long-distance buses due to supply shortages.

Extended the hours at Thai-Myanmar Friendship Bridge boosts trades and travellers

Thai and Myanmar officials have agreed to extend the operating hours of the Thai-Myanmar Friendship Bridge, which connects Myawady in Myanmar to Mae Sot in Thailand, on January 1, leading to an increase in border trade and the volume of travellers between countries.

The operating hours of the Friendship Bridge were increased from 6am-6pm to 5am-8pm (Myanmar Time) on January 5.

Despite the slump in truck trade around the New Year holidays, workers and buyers and sellers of commodities have found it easier to go to Mae Sot in morning and return in evening.

Rice exports to China surge

Myanmar rice exports to China through the Muse border crossing have swelled due to increased demand from China and fewer seizures by Chinese authorities, according to merchants from Muse.“Demand is up. Export is surging,” a merchant said.On average, about 4,500 tonnes of rice and 1,500 tonnes of broken rice are exported daily through Muse Trade Camp.“Seizure of Myanmar rice by Chinese authorities has decreased. Trade slumps when seizures occur.

Tenders for new flyover projects to open

The Yangon Region government announced that it will open clean and fair tenders for three new flyover construction projects in Yangon.The regional government has allocated Ks 54.35 billion to build flyovers at 8-mile junction, Tamwe junction and Kokkine junction in the 2015-16 fiscal year, of which Ks 22.5 billion will be used for Tamwe junction, Ks 16.45 billion for 8-mile junction and Ks 15.4 billion for Kokkine junction.The regional government plans to hold an open tender at the end of March.

2014, record-breaking year for tourism sector

Last year’s tourist arrivals have set a new record, earning over one billion USD, according to the ministry of hotels and tourism.

The number of tourist arrivals reached 3.5 million and earned 1.135 billion USD. The hotels and tourism ministry designated the 2014 as a record-breaking year as the tourist arrivals and tourism revenue in 2014 surpassed those in 2013. The record revenue in 2013 amounted to 926 million USD.

WB weighs in on selecting audit firm for EITI report

Besides the tripartite – government, the company and civil society organisations – responsible for piling report for implementing Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), the World Bank (WB) joined in selecting independent audit firm.