Vice President U Myint Swe opens Myanmar-EU Economic Forum

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June 8, 2017

The Myanmar-EU Economic Forum held its opening ceremony at the Kempinski Hotel in Nay Pyi Taw yesterday. Vice President U Myint Swe delivered the opening speech.

Present at the meeting were Deputy Speaker of Amyotha Hluttaw U Aye Thar Aung, Union Ministers Lt-Gen Kyaw Swe, Dr. Aung Thu, U Ohn Win, U Khin Maung Cho, Dr. Than Myint, U Win Khaing, Chief Minister of Bago Region, Deputy Ministers, the Deputy Attorney General, Hluttaw Representatives, Heads of Departments, the EU Ambassador to Myanmar and his delegation, representatives of EU Chambers of Commerce, business experts and invited guests.

Vice President U Myint Swe said the purpose of the ceremony was to boost trade relations and investment with the European Union, therefore he expected new ideas to come up for discussion at the forum.

He said Myanmar urgently needed foreign investment and technical assistance in developing a business model to enter the global market. He said investors willing to make responsible investments were important in the development of a nation’s economy and the government was mak ing firm decisions in attracting investment. He also said peace and stability were important for improving the trade and investment sector, especially in a country like Myanmar. He said this is why it was crucial to engage in peace talks with both armed and unarmed ethnic groups and establish a federal democratic union. Participants of the 2nd Union Peace Conference- 21st Century Panglong managed to agree on 37 points which would help in the country’s path to peace and development.

The Vice President said investment was needed to acquire capital and create job opportunities, which was why the government was working hard for microbusinesses to thrive.

The Myanmar Investment Law was enacted in October 2016 to create a working environment for investors. The law grants some levels of protection to investors and includes mechanisms for reporting inconveniences. He said Myanmar was a country with many investment opportunities and was in a geographically advantageous location for trade, between developing ASEAN countries and two powerful nations.

He also said investment in Myanmar consisted mainly of oil and natural gas, electric power, news and communications, commodity production and real estate. The aforementioned sectors have further investment potential but there were still many areas for potential investment.

The Vice President said investment from the European Union was greatly welcomed and that they were hoping for technical and professional assistance to also arrive in Myanmar.

Afterwards, EU Ambassador to Myanmar Mr. Roland Kobia, Mr. Arnaldo Abruzzini, CEO of the Association of European Chambers of Commerce and Industry (EUROCHAMBRES) and Mr. David Levrat, Chairman of EuroCham Myanmar each delivered welcoming remarks and closed the opening ceremony. The Vice President and all the other participants then took a documentary photo together.

After the opening ceremony, the main part of the forum began. Discussions were made on EU nations’ investment in Myanmar’s economy, implementing corporate social responsibility, the electricity and energy sector, the logistics sector, construction sector and health sector.