Inquiry into Kachin hydro projects rejected

The Kachin State Hluttaw on April 2 meeting rejected an inquiry seeking information concerning the termination of Confluence Region Hydropower Projects.

When In Pha yaung Gan, a representative of the Hpakant Township, asked for information regarding the final date for the termination of the hydropower projects which were temporarily suspended by the current government, it was rejected by Kachin State Hluttaw chairman on grounds that it is an issue that has to be discussed at Assembly of the Union, not at state level.

Contraband including thousand of beer boxes seized

Myanmar’s Mobile Inspection Team seized more than 40,000 boxes of Chang beer and hundreds of household appliances during searches in the last half of March.

On March 18, the team confiscated the beer on a truck near Kyaikhto in Mon State, which is on the southern coast near the border with Thailand's Kanchanaburi province.

Singapore tops list of investors in Myanmar

Singapore tops the list of 27 foreign countries with investments in Myanmar for the 2014-15 fiscal year, according to Directorate of Investment and Companies Administration.

Between April and February, foreign investment amounted to US$7.8 billion and went into the oil and gas sector, energy, commodity production, transportation and communication, mineral extraction, tourism, real estate, agribusiness and fishing.

Fire insurance services available for four types of building

The Myanmar Insurance will offer fire insurance services for four types of building based on the level of damages.

Building is categorised into four sections — RC building (first class), building with wooden columns and concrete wall (second class), wooden house (third class) and hut (fourth class).

Ks1 trillion from new car tax

The tightening of regulations on imported cars has increased revenue by Ks1,145.6 billion, according to Myanmar’s Customs Department.

Since October 2011, Ks590 billion in tax and more than Ks554 billion in commercial tax was collected from 432,953 imported vehicles.

Myanmar slams EU rights report

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has condemned a European Union document on human rights in Myanmar at the Geneva Summit for Human Rights and Democracy.

Japan hands over US$300m loan

In order to develop the national electricity grid and communications, the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has granted Myanmar a US$300 million loan.

"JICA loaned an amount of 35.178 billion Japanese yen, which when converted to US dollars will be 300 million. The interest rate is 0.01 per cent and the repayment must be made within 40 years,” the JICA said.

YSE: $20 billion worth of Market Capitalisation by 2022

The Yangon Stock Exchange (YSX), set to open in October this year, is to see up to US$20 billion in Market Capitalisation as well as trade volume of US$10 billion per year, said Dr Aung Thura, CEO of Thura Swiss during the ASEAN- Myanmar forum held on March 23 at the Park Royal Hotel, Yangon.

“If we were to take Vietnam as an example, Myanmar is looking towards achieving US$20 billion worth of Market Capitalisation. Trade volume also can reach up to US$10 billion annually,” according to Dr Aung Thura.

Over US$270 million to be spent on oil, gas exploration

Myanmar Oil and Gas Enterprise (MOGE) and Unocal Myanmar Offshore Company plan to spend US$277.85 million over the next six years on oil and gas exploration at offshore block A-5 in Rakhine State, according to the Energy Ministry.

The joint venture signed a production-sharing agreement on March 20. The ministry received a signature bonus of $3.5 million and a surface fee of $150,000.

ADB: Inflation to rise in Myanmar

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has predicted that Myanmar is likely to see inflation rise to 8.4 per cent in the 2015-16 fiscal year, up from 6.5 per cent in 2014-15.

ADB attributes the potential rise to higher fiscal spending and higher wage expectations, which will increase domestic demand.

These assessments were presented in a new economic report released by ADB on Wednesday.