Reposted from Financial Times
By Geoff Dyer and Richard McGregor
When Thein Sein arrives in Washington on Monday as the first Myanmar president for almost half a century to visit the US capital, he may discover that the warm welcome also comes with a price tag.
Mr Thein Sein will meet President Barack Obama at the White House and congressional leaders on Capitol Hill, sign a number of trade agreements and be feted at a dinner at the US Chamber of Commerce.
The programme reflects Washington’s support for Myanmar’s democratic reforms after years of self-imposed isolation, as well as the US desire to make sure it can compete in the region with its geostrategic rival, China.
But Mr Thein Sein’s hosts will be looking beyond the red carpet to how Myanmar is handling the wave of competing foreign investment claims, with one early deal in particular – a contract for Yangon’s airport – in the US spotlight. More…
Burma is a land of treasures, such as the Shwedagon pagoda in Yangon
Reposted from GT Global Trader
By Eric Jackson
When a repressive regime comes to an end, there is always optimism inside and outside the country that it will herald a bright new dawn of freedom and economic growth.
Sometimes these hopes are realised, as was the case with countries such as Panama after the fall of Manuel Noriega and his drug-running henchmen in 1989.
However, as Egypt and Libya have demonstrated, the opposite can often apply. So when, a few years ago, the military relaxed its grip on power in Burma and elections were held in which Thein Sein became president and long-term political prisoner Aung San Suu Kyi was released from house arrest, the world held its breath. More…
Reposted from Mizzima News
Google’s executive chairman Eric Schmidt during a conference at a technology park in Yangon on Friday, March 22, 2013.
Google’s executive chairman Eric Schmidt called for “free speech” and for the government to be kept out of internet regulations during a speech to students in Yangon on Friday.
“Try to keep the government out of regulating the internet. The answer to bad speech is more speech and more communication and voices,” said Schmidt.
He said that the company’s first priority in Myanmar would be to to improve access to information through its search, translation and mapping applications. More…
Yangon International Airport
Reposted from Bloomberg
By Cathy Chan
Myanmar, the Southeast Asian nation that exited 50 years of military rule in 2011, offers investors the best growth opportunity in the region, said Hari Achuthan, whose firm is betting $700 million on the country.
ACO Investment Group, co-founded by Achuthan and former United Airlines president Ronojoy Dutta, this year aims to invest $200 million in Yangon International Airport and plans to make a $500 million bid for two telecommunications licenses as part of a new global infrastructure fund, Achuthan said.
“What we’re looking for is a frontier market that has a tremendous amount of growth ahead of it,” the former Credit Suisse Group AG banker said in a phone interview on March 15. “In the Asian markets, if you’re looking for growth, we would rather look at Myanmar versus the saturated markets of Thailand or Indonesia.” More…
Reposted from The Star Online
Coca-Cola Co and PepsiCo fight for market share in Myanmar
SHANGHAI: PepsiCo Inc is in talks to sign a bottling agreement in Myanmar, ramping up the competition with Coca-Cola Co as they fight for market share in a country emerging from decades of isolation. More…
Reposted from Bloomberg
Thein Sein, Myanmar’s president, has shifted Myanmar toward democracy since he took office last year to end about five decades of direct military rule.
By Klaus Wille
Silk Road Management, an investor in frontier markets, will take stakes in three Myanmar projects by year-end, the first private-equity deals in Southeast Asia’s poorest nation as it emerges from five decades of isolation. The Myanmar Human Capital Fund closed in September after raising $25 million from family offices and wealthy individuals from Mongolia, Russia and oil-rich countries in the Caspian region, said Alisher Ali, managing partner at Silk Road. More…
Reposted from The Wall Street Journal
By SAM HOLMES
“At this time, the president will surely sign the bill and promulgate it as law” – Mr. Zaw Htay (Official from President’s office)
Myanmar’s parliament passed a more business-friendly foreign-investment law Thursday that removes some previous restrictions on foreign ownership of joint-venture companies. More…
Reposted from The New York Times
By Thomas Fuller
Japan’s plans for the makeover of Yangon
YANGON, MYANMAR — On a street in central Yangon the final moments of Kenji Nagai’s life were captured in a Pulitzer Prize-winning photo, an image that exemplified the brutality of military rule in Myanmar. More…
Reposted from World News Report
Japan to provide at least $18 billion in aid, investment and debt forgiveness
YANGON/TOKYO: Japan Inc is charging into Myanmar. The rush began one night last October, when Myanmar’s new president rolled out a map after dinner to show an aging Japanese power broker a prize that could be Tokyo’s to develop – a swathe of land nearly as big as Macau. More…
Reposted from Business Line
“The people of Myanmar are very pleased with the easing of economic sanctions by the US. We are very grateful for the actions of the US” – Thein Sein
New York, Sept. 27: The US will begin easing an import ban on goods from Myanmar, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told Myanmar leader Thein Sein, in a further lifting of sanctions on the country.
Clinton told the Myanmar president yesterday that in recognition of the rapid reforms his South-East Asian nation, which was once ruled by a military junta, has undertaken “the United States is taking the next step in normalizing our commercial relationship.” More…