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Vietnam, Myanmar Talk Steel Manufacturing

Vietnam and Myanmar are looking to set up a joint venture in steel manufacturing, a minister said.

U Maung Myint, minister for industry, during his visit to Vietnam said Myanmar will expedite the establishment of steel joint ventures with Vietnam and called for investment from Vietnamese businesses in garment and textiles.

During talks with Vietnamese Minister for Industry and Trade Vu Huy Hoang, the minister said his visit to Vietnam was to seek partners and forge bilateral trade links in the fields of chemicals, fertilisers, steel and agricultural machinery.

Myanmar will create optimal conditions for Vietnamese fertiliser firms to boost their exports to the market, he added.

In talks with the Chairman of Vietnam’s Bank for Investment and Development of Vietnam (BIDV) Tran Bac Ha, U Maung Myint and chairman of Myanmar’s Small and Medium-sized Industry Development Bank (SMIDB), expressed the hope that BIDV would be one of the first foreign banks licensed to operate in Myanmar in time to come.

Ha said his bank was ready to set up a commercial bank in Myanmar soon after getting approval from Myanmar government, adding that BIDV has leased a 3,000 square metre office in Yangon in anticipation of the plan.

BIDV will support SMIDB in developing banking service products and information technology application besides exchanging information on banking operations and economic, financial and banking policies of Vietnam and Myanmar, he said.

SMIDB’s chairman said that the two banks will sign a Memorandum of Understanding on bilateral cooperation and technological support in Myanmar later in May.

According to the Vietnamese Ministry of Planning and Investment, until the end of last year, 45 Vietnamese firms were licensed to operate in Myanmar.

The two countries targeted a bilateral trade turnover of $600 million by 2015. Investment and tourism, respectively, from Vietnam to Myanmar are also expected to touch $1-1.2 billion and 35,000 tourists by 2015.

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