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Myanmar Business News in Brief

Pharmexcil aims to prop up Indian pharma exports

India’s Pharmaceutical Export Promotion Council of India (Pharmexcil) is eyeing to improve Indian pharma exports to Myanmar, according to Indian media reports. As part of this initiative, the council is planning to organise expo and “buyer-seller-meet” in Yangon from 19-21 February at Park Royal Hotel in Yangon.

DMA, WMU to collaborate in maritime industry

The Department of Marine Administration (DMA) and the World Maritime University (WMU) have signed a deal on creating a network to share experience and technology between the two bodies. Under the five-year agreement, the two bodies will collaborate in the design of e-learning and learning management system and implementing regulation of the International Maritime Organization in Myanmar’s shipping industry. The two bodies will also cooperate in prevention of oil spills, applied and research programs, maritime safety issues, survey and updating of navigation aid in Myanmar’s territorial waters, effective port and shipping management, environmental conservation and maritime casualty investigation.

JICA to Fund 168-MW Hydropower Plant Upgrades

The Japan International Cooperation Agency has agreed to provide $67 million to the Electric Power Corporation to help replace machinery at 168-MW Baluchaung 2 hydropower plant in Kayah state. EPC did not specify what equipment will be included in the overhaul, but said the JICA-funded work should be complete in 2016.

Highway renovation project gets 20 bids

The project to broaden the Yangon-Mandalay expressway from four lanes to eight has received only 20 tender proposals, according to the Ministry of Construction. A total of 160 application forms were released but only 20 companies expressed interest by the deadline in late January. The project is expected to cost over $1 billion. The 366-mile road will be upgraded through a build-operate-transfer system.

MTDC to develop $560-m hotel zone

Myanmar Tourism Development Company (MTDC) will start developing a new 808-hectare hotel zone project in Tada Oo township in Mandalay, TTG Asia reported. Yan Win, chairman of MTDC, a business arm of Myanmar Tourism Federation, said the project will cost about $560 million and will include the building of infrastructure and other facilities, according to the report. The project will comprise two phases, with hotel-related developments planned for the first two years. When completed, there will be 10,000 hotel rooms and about 50,000 local jobs will be created, the report adds.

Unocal, Stat Oil, Conoco Phillips get offshore permits in Rakhine

The Myanmar Investment Commission has given permission to Unocal Myanmar Offshore (Bermuda), Stat Oil Myanmar (Singapore) and Conoco Phillips Myanmar E&P (Singapore) to operate oil and natural gas projects at offshore work sites in Rakhine state. Unocal Myanmar Offshore will partner with local firm Royal Marine Engineering to explore oil and natural gas at work site A-5. Stat Oil Myanmar and Conoco Phillips Myanmar E&P will operate oil and natural gas exploration projects at work site A-10.

Gov’t defends tepid bond sale

The Central Bank of Myanmar defended its first sale of government debt under the reformist regime as “successful,” despite selling less than half of the $50 million offering, AFP reported. “I think it was successful. This is the first time and I think we can do better next time,” Thuzar Win, a Central bank official involved in the auction process, was quoted by AFP as saying.

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