Myanmar investment law approved

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Myanmar’s president Thein Sein still has to sign the new investment legislation into law

Parliament drops controversial $5 million minimum investment clause and raises foreign ownership allowance from 49 to 50 per cent in its meeting on Friday, September 7.

The new investment legislation is now to be signed by Myanmar president Thein Sein into law. However, the president still can send it back to the lawmakers to have further changes implemented.

The changes in the draft follow criticism from investors and the Asian Development Bank that the original version of the legislation has been too restrictive, banning access for investors to important economic sectors and protecting local conglomerates. See Inside Investor’s report.

While full details of the new law have not been announced yet, information leaked that the minimum investment of $5 million has been dropped and the foreign equity allowance has been raised from 49 to 50 per cent. Both clauses combined would have deterred a number of foreign investors from setting up joint ventures in Myanmar.

In some business sectors, foreign ownership can exceed 50 per cent, government officials said. They didn’t specify the sectors in which such exemptions would apply. There also was no immediate information on which business sectors have been defined as restricted for foreigners.

Even with these provision dropped, the new law still falls short of what many businesses had hoped to see, and is also still more restrictive than the investment laws in Laos and Cambodia, after which the Myanmar law originally was modelled.

 

 

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Reading Time: 1 minute

Myanmar’s president Thein Sein still has to sign the new investment legislation into law

Parliament drops controversial $5 million minimum investment clause and raises foreign ownership allowance from 49 to 50 per cent in its meeting on Friday, September 7.

Reading Time: 1 minute

Myanmar’s president Thein Sein still has to sign the new investment legislation into law

Parliament drops controversial $5 million minimum investment clause and raises foreign ownership allowance from 49 to 50 per cent in its meeting on Friday, September 7.

The new investment legislation is now to be signed by Myanmar president Thein Sein into law. However, the president still can send it back to the lawmakers to have further changes implemented.

The changes in the draft follow criticism from investors and the Asian Development Bank that the original version of the legislation has been too restrictive, banning access for investors to important economic sectors and protecting local conglomerates. See Inside Investor’s report.

While full details of the new law have not been announced yet, information leaked that the minimum investment of $5 million has been dropped and the foreign equity allowance has been raised from 49 to 50 per cent. Both clauses combined would have deterred a number of foreign investors from setting up joint ventures in Myanmar.

In some business sectors, foreign ownership can exceed 50 per cent, government officials said. They didn’t specify the sectors in which such exemptions would apply. There also was no immediate information on which business sectors have been defined as restricted for foreigners.

Even with these provision dropped, the new law still falls short of what many businesses had hoped to see, and is also still more restrictive than the investment laws in Laos and Cambodia, after which the Myanmar law originally was modelled.

 

 

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