United States’ Chamber of Commerce and UMDCCI see great potential for business

The United States’ and Myanmar business leaders envisage great trade and investment opportunities between the two countries, a conference held at the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (UMFCCI) head today.

John Goyer, Senior Director, Southeast Asia, U.S. Chamber of Commerce released a White paper at the conference entitled “US Myanmar Commercial Relation; The Next Phase including policy recommendation for both the U.S and Myanmar government.

“Myanmar has an ambitious and daunting economic reform agenda” Mr. Goyer said. “This US business community fully supports Myanmar efforts to modernize and open the economy, and wants to be a partner in that effort.

“For our part, we will continue to advocate for the normalization of the US- Myanmar relationship. There is great potential for trade and investment between Myanmar and the United States. We want to realize that potential.”

Yangon region Minster of Planning and Finance, U Myint Thaung, also spoke at the conference held at UMFCCI’s head office at Lanmadaw and U Kyaw Win, Union Minister of Planning and Finance attended.

UMFCCI President, U Win Aung sad that conference marked a “new chapter of conidial business elation for mutual benefit” for both countries. “A new era of democratic reforms and positive change to usher in greater prosperity and well-being for our people has begun to dawn on our country”. President Aung said.

“Our government’s people- centered policies have own the support and appreciation of the international community paving the way for increased bilateral economic cooperation for mutual benefit. It has been a long wait for UMFCCI and Myanmar’s private sector businesses to proactively engage with the US business community.

The White paper call for the lifting of economic sanctions under the International Economic Emergency Power Act (IEEPA), the law which underlies most U. S sanction against Myanmar. It also call for the inclusion of Myanmar in the Generalized System of Preference (GSP) , a duty-free program meant to support economic growth in developing countries , as well as exploratory talks in a bilateral investment treaty , and various types of technical and capacity building support.

UMFCCI Vice-President, Doctor Maung Maung Lay said it was the aim of both countries to normalize business relations.

“Our ultimate goal is the total lifting of all sanctions and reinstatement of the GSP”, he said.

Many companies consider that unless the ongoing US sanction against Myanmar are full lifted , investment from the United State will remain modest.

The conference include two panel discussion, one on how to improve the investment environment, moderated by U Aung Naing Oo , director-general of Investment and Company Administration (DICA) and the second , on talking advantage of normalization and navigation existing sanction , moderated by U Thaung Su Nyein, CEG of UMFCCI.

In 2015, US export to Myanmar were $US 227m and import were $US 144m. According to DICA’s statistics, approved total invest in Myanmar by US is $US 248m.

See full White Paper at UMFCCI website www.umfcci.com.mm.

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