February 12, 2017

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Government to attract investment in less developed regions

Thilawa Special Economic Zone. Photo: Myat Thandar Maung
Thilawa Special Economic Zone.
Photo: Myat Thandar Maung

THE Department of Investment and Companies Administration has stated that less developed regions of Myanmar could see an increase in investment were taxes to be reduced to make such business ventures more attractive.
Foreign investors have already invested heavily into urban centres of the country such as Yangon and Mandalay, but investment in less developed regions would undoubtedly result in more employment opportunities for local residents.
“We will reduce taxes on income of foreign companies should they invest in less developed parts of the country. This article will be included in the new foreign investment law that is currently being drawn up,” said the director from the Department of Investment and Companies Administration.
Less developed areas of the country such as Chin, Kayah and Rakhine States primarily require basic housing and road infrastructure, together with access to electricity, which presents a special opportunity for potential investors.
“The most import aspect of investment is tax. If reduction of taxes are to be made to encourage investment into these regions then I believe the agricultural sector should be given priority.” said economist Dr Soe Htun.
Current domestic and foreign investment laws will be combined in a bid to increase both forms of investment into the country, while a new Myanmar Investment Commission will be formed which will issue permits for investors. As such, foreign companies eyeing business opportunities within Myanmar will have to wait temporarily before the granting of permits can be resumed.
Over 80 submissions have been made to the Myanmar Investment Commission so far during this 2016-17 fiscal year by domestic and foreign companies wishing to make economic investments within Myanmar, it is known.
Records of the Department of Investment and Companies indicate that so far during this 2016-17 fiscal year, investment in the construction sector amounts to just 0.06 percent, US$37.767 million, with investment in the electricity sector considerably more so at 30.89 percent, over US$15 billion.—Myitmakha News Agency

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