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Myanmar Business News in Brief

Yangon to host oil and gas exhibition in October

The “Oil and Gas Myanmar” exhibition will be held in Yangon in October this year, aimed at serving as the sourcing platform and knowledge base for industry professionals, the organisers said. The exhibition, from October 15 to 17, will showcase technologies, services and solutions ranging from exploration to production. Companies from Australia, China, Germany, Indonesia, Malaysia, Russia, Singapore, Thailand, the US and the UK will highlight their latest innovations, products and solutions in the expo. The Oil and Gas Myanmar 2015 conference will also be held during the exhibition.

Myanmar international airline market experiences steep slowdown in growth

Growth in Myanmar’s international market is starting to slow significantly and will likely end 2015 in the single digits, ending a streak of five consecutive years of at least 20 percent growth, Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation (CAPA) reported. Not a single foreign airline has launched services to Myanmar over the last 18 months and several of the 22 foreign carriers currently serving the market have cut capacity in recent months, CAPA said. Myanmar’s two main international carriers have also reduced capacity. But several domestic carriers are planning to launch international services, which could lead to overcapacity on several routes as the growth in demand has started to slow significantly, the report added.

KDDI, Sumitomo to invest $1.6b to expand MPT network

Japanese conglomerates KDDI and Sumitomo said the firms plan to overhaul the mobile network of strategic partner Myanmar Post and Telecommunications (MPT) and boost the state-run telco’s network footprint from 2,000 base transceiver stations (BTS) to 5,000 by next year. According to Nikkei, the Japanese partners will invest $1.6 billion to improve MPT’s infrastructure during this timeframe. The firms are also seeking to establish exclusive MPT dealerships in Yangon, Naypyitaw and Mandalay. Further, the partners aim to raise the number of stores exclusively offering their smartphone products from five to 50. They hope that the strategy will allow them to sell 12 million SIM cards per year and capitalise on the country’s low population penetration rate.

Yangon finishes urban planning capacity building project

The Yangon City Development Committee’s (YCDC) Urban Planning Unit has successfully completed its capacity building project, the Yangon Heritage Trust (YHT) said in a statement. The project was aimed at enhancing the quality of urban planning policies and practices and making urban planning processes more inclusive and accessible to citizens.

Singapore-Myanmar technical cooperation program extended for three years

The Singapore-Myanmar technical cooperation program was extended for three more years until 2018, state-run media reported. Under the bilateral program, Singapore has provided targeted technical assistance to support Myanmar’s development in three areas including economic development, human resource development and public administration, and has trained more than 11,700 Myanmar officials in these areas.

Nine more firms invest this month

The Myanmar Investment Commission has allowed nine more domestic and foreign firms to invest in Myanmar so far this month, an official report said. The approved businesses include satellite pay TV, hotel, clothing manufacturing, wood processing, value-added agricultural products processing, auto assembly, fire brick production, telecom services and road works, the report said. Last month, the commission granted 28 investment businesses including timber processing, garments, paint, plastic products, sports equipment and building materials and packaging, as well as bus assembly and maintenance services, among others.

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