American investors are showing increasing interest in Myanmar as the government shows increasing signs that it is committed to overcome legal and development hurdles to make doing business here easier, an audience at a panel on Myanmar’s investment laws has heard.
Kristan Bauer, deputy chief of mission at the United States Embassy to Myanmar American companies are “closely monitoring” Myanmar and its economic development, especially the new investment law and the issue of legal protections for American investors.
Bauer was talking at an event organized by the Oxford Business Group last week at the Chatrium Hotel in Yangon.
“I think (US investors) will come here when they see the progress the investment law is making … Myanmar has huge potential in the region,” she said.
Also on the panel was U Aung Thura, chief executive officer of Thura Swiss. He said legal liberalization is one of the key points of progress in attracting foreign investment because business are keen to know they will be protected as they monitor the country’s change.
“Legal protection is not the only thing needed to attract the foreign investment. There’s a need for other infrastructure,” he said.
He cited the need for clear rules on taxation, government registration processes and monetary transactions and said investors would consider improvements “overall” before deciding whether or not to come to Myanmar.
U Kyaw Kyaw Hlaing, Chairman of the Myanmar Oil and Gas Service Society, said that updating the investment law and the companies act was not enough to lure foreign investment.
Meanwhile U Kyaw Win, the Minister of Planning and Finance, emphasised the need to ensure a level playing field for local and foreign investors.