Japan set to step up Myanmar investment

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Aso Myanmar
Taro Aso, Japanese finance minister and deputy prime minister, visits Myanmar’s industrial zone of Thilawa in January 2013.

Japan is likely to take the top spot as leading foreign investor in Myanmar, it turned out at a meeting of delegates of 50 Japanese firms with Myanmar business people in Yangon on February 19 at the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry.

Figures showed that  Japan’s foreign direct investment in Myanmar in 2013 already amounted to about $268 million as per January 31, 2013. Japanese delegates were especially interested in asking about prioritised infrastructure projects, human resource development and the situation of and small and medium-sized enterprises.

The chamber invited the Japanes companies to jointly invest with local firms in Myanmar’s special economic zones, such as Thilawa in the Yangon region, Kyaukphyu in Rakhine state and Dawei in the Tanintharyi region.

Myanmar also wants to invite more investors in manufacturing, transport, property development, food production and tourism because the $2-billion investment in those sectors was dwarfed by the mining, oil and gas and timber sectors, where $19 billion has been invested so far.

Japan is Myanmar’s largest creditor and has recently said it will waive part of $5.74 billion Myanmar owes it in debt. About 60 per cent would be waived in two stages in 2013 while a consortium of private Japanese banks led by Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group is working on a bridging loan for the balance. Japan’s government-linked Bank for International Cooperation will also provide a $900 million bridge loan to clear Myanmar’s debt arrears with the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank in January, allowing them to restart lending.

The largest Japanese investment in Myanmar currently is the development of the Thilawa industry park. Mitsubishi Corp., Marubeni Corp. and Sumitomo Corp. form the Japanese side of a joint venture developing the industrial park. The plan is to build the first 400 hectares of the park by 2015 and start luring Japanese and global manufacturers. The investment into the first phase it around $500 million.

 

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

Taro Aso, Japanese finance minister and deputy prime minister, visits Myanmar’s industrial zone of Thilawa in January 2013.

Japan is likely to take the top spot as leading foreign investor in Myanmar, it turned out at a meeting of delegates of 50 Japanese firms with Myanmar business people in Yangon on February 19 at the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Aso Myanmar
Taro Aso, Japanese finance minister and deputy prime minister, visits Myanmar’s industrial zone of Thilawa in January 2013.

Japan is likely to take the top spot as leading foreign investor in Myanmar, it turned out at a meeting of delegates of 50 Japanese firms with Myanmar business people in Yangon on February 19 at the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry.

Figures showed that  Japan’s foreign direct investment in Myanmar in 2013 already amounted to about $268 million as per January 31, 2013. Japanese delegates were especially interested in asking about prioritised infrastructure projects, human resource development and the situation of and small and medium-sized enterprises.

The chamber invited the Japanes companies to jointly invest with local firms in Myanmar’s special economic zones, such as Thilawa in the Yangon region, Kyaukphyu in Rakhine state and Dawei in the Tanintharyi region.

Myanmar also wants to invite more investors in manufacturing, transport, property development, food production and tourism because the $2-billion investment in those sectors was dwarfed by the mining, oil and gas and timber sectors, where $19 billion has been invested so far.

Japan is Myanmar’s largest creditor and has recently said it will waive part of $5.74 billion Myanmar owes it in debt. About 60 per cent would be waived in two stages in 2013 while a consortium of private Japanese banks led by Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group is working on a bridging loan for the balance. Japan’s government-linked Bank for International Cooperation will also provide a $900 million bridge loan to clear Myanmar’s debt arrears with the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank in January, allowing them to restart lending.

The largest Japanese investment in Myanmar currently is the development of the Thilawa industry park. Mitsubishi Corp., Marubeni Corp. and Sumitomo Corp. form the Japanese side of a joint venture developing the industrial park. The plan is to build the first 400 hectares of the park by 2015 and start luring Japanese and global manufacturers. The investment into the first phase it around $500 million.

 

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