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Economists Scold Myanmar Firms’ Business Ethics

Businesses in Myanmar need to be more aware of international business ethics and regulation, said Dr Wah Wah Maung, deputy director general of Foreign Economic Relation Department under the Ministry of National Planning and Economic Development.

She warned that Myanmar needs to improve the quality of its businesses to compete in the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) and international markets.

“When working with the international community, the most important thing is business ethics. Businesspeople need to know business law and trade processes,” Dr Wah Wah Maung said at a public speech at Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (UMFCCI) headquarters.

Dr Maung Aung, advisor to the Ministry of Commerce, told Myanmar Business Today that maintaining business ethics is very important to become competitive in the international trade and produce quality products with skilled workers.

“Here, businesspeople have very weak ethics. For example, they engage in illegal trade, promote shoddy products and they can’t market Myanmar brands internationally. In Thailand, they have their own market with their own established brands. Only businesspeople who adhere to ethical codes will gain public trust,” Dr Maung Aung said.

The government previously had plans to develop the country’s economy based on agriculture, but as the country has gained more investment in the industrial sector, it is important to be aware of business ethics and agreements, said Dr Wah Wah Maung.

As Myanmar will become part of AEC in upcoming years, Myanmar businesspeople need to be made familiar with international norms in business ethics, laws, and regulations, she added.

The Customs Department and the Ministry of Commerce are trying to take action against illegal trade and low-quality products by confiscating goods, withdrawing licences and inflicting punishments.

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