Upgrading of finance services in Myanmar
- By Khin Maung Oo
- Now, the country needs local and foreign investments so as to increase the momentum of national development. Especially, we need an influx of foreign investment with many capacities—modern technology, experiences and skills in management and large amounts of capitals to be invested in the country. In persuading foreign investors to enter the nation, especially finance services including banking and insurance services it is important to give authority in accordance with international standards.
A brief look at our recent history reveals that the nation’s financial sector still has needs and shortcomings compared to international standards. So as to be able to fulfill these necessities, the Union Government is performing the necessary tasks for sustainable development by taking financial assistance from international organizations such as the World Bank and Asian Development Bank. Though, presently, there are bank branches opened in the country by 13 foreign banks, those banks have only limited authority to take part in the internal banking services. Until now, foreign banks have the right to give banking services to foreign entrepreneurs only, in Myanmar.
Yet, it has been learnt that arrangements are being made to allow foreign banks to offer project loans to local entrepreneurs as well. I hereby express my heart-felt welcome to the above mentioned arrangement of the Central Bank, assuming that it can become a driving force for the acquisition of foreign direct investment which is of great need for the country.
Here, I would like to highlight the country’s need of FDI. SMEs, back-bones of the nation’s industrial economy are making their concerted efforts to vie with other ASEAN countries, with the increasing activities of (ASEAN Economic Community—AEC). In such a situation, foreign investment is of vital need for local entrepreneurs. For the fulfillment of this vital need, we must implement in every way till we achieve success.
Under the current situation, it was welcome news to have heard that the American Economic Delegation has met with the Myanmar Investment Commission (MIC) to discuss making investments in Myanmar. It has been learnt that the AED is composed of entrepreneurs on financial services including banking and insurance services. I humbly present my opinions that the discussions between MIC and AED will support the upgrading of financial services in Myanmar.