Telenor to expand services next month

Telenor Myanmar said about 63 per cent of its customers were now using 3G phones and 58 per cent used the mobile internet.

Since starting operations in September 2014, it had gained 6.4 million regular users, it said, with mobile penetration covering 42 per cent of the country and more than 2,000 masts constructed. About 98 per cent of the masts supported the 3G network, it claimed.

Myanmar firm to run Thilawa jetty

Myanmar’s Diamond Star Company has been permitted to operate an international jetty and commodity production through a build-operate-transfer system on 61 acres of land at the Thilawa port, according to Myanmar Investment Commission (MIC).

The MIC gave the firm permission to run a jetty and land development work, and the production of chemical fertilisers, flour, cooking oil, grain, sugar and packaging works.

Dr Ko Ko Gyi, one of Myanmar’s top businessmen, owns Diamond Star.

Owner of Costec garment factory refuses to let workers return to work

Approximately 100 workers from the Costec garment factory who went on strike to raise their salaries accepted the decision of the labour tribunal commission to return to work within 30 days of the end of the strike. However, the owner of the factory refused to accept them back into the factory following his appeal at the labour tribunal commission.

5% of population has bank account

About 5 per cent of the population has a bank account due to the weakness of the fiscal sector, said Bernd Kuzmits of Germany’s Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development.
“Currently, Myanmar’s fiscal sector has too few depositors and investors who will serve as a medium sector for it. The majority of people have no significant role in the fiscal sector. The fiscal sector is still weak. To be exact, only 5 per cent of the country’s total population has a bank account,” he added.

YCDC to build six new street-crossing bridges in Yangon

The Yangon City Development Committee (YCDC) said it will conduct assessments in preparation to build six street-crossing bridges in Yangon in the 2015-16 fiscal year.

YCDC officials said some of the bridges will include escalators, and the project is estimated to cost Ks 1.5 billion. The number of the escalator-bridges will depend on the availability of funds. YCDC will try its best not to obstruct traffic during construction.

Insurance firms could work together

Myanmar Insurance Business Supervisory Board says it will allow foreign insurance companies to offer services through joint ventures or direct delivery.

President looks for US$5,000 average income

The average income in Myanmar might reach US$5,000 by 2030, said the President Thein Sein, referring international data at the 2015 Presidential Awards Ceremony.

He was referring to data from the International Monetary Fund, World Bank, Asia Pacific Development Bank, United Nations Economic and Social Commission and Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development.

Dollar value manipulation to be targeted

Action will be taken against those who artificially inflate the dollar price, which is one of reasons for soaring commodity prices, according to Dr Maung Aung, an adviser to the Ministry of Commerce.

He had attended a meeting in Nay Pyi Taw with members of the commodity price stabilisation committee, regional and state governments representatives and the chambers of commerce and industry.

Hopes of US$8 bn to US$11bn investment per annum by 2030

Directorate of Investment and Company Administration (DICA) director Marlar Myo Nyunt said DICA is working towards securing between US$8 billion to US$11 billion per year in foreign investment by 2030.

“The amount of foreign investment in Myanmar in 2014-15 was US$4 billion and we will work towards receiving investment of US$6 billion per annum from 2016 to 2020, from 2021 to 2025 we hope it will be US$8 billion and then US$11 billion per annum until 2030,” said Marlar Myo Nyunt.

Trade flourishes at Muse checkpoint

Trade flow at the Muse border hub is thriving, with large exports of rice and corn to China, according to checkpoint officials.

Between 140 and 180 rice trucks and between 120 and 170 corn trucks pass through the border gate at Muse every day.

However, fruit exports are in decline as the season has ended.

“As the situation at Chinshwehal is uncertain, the trucks are using the Muse route for the time being. This year’s exports are likely to exceed last year’s sum,” said a border official.