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Myanmar to raise rank on World Bank index in 3 years

CHAN MYA HTWE 24 JUL 2017 (mmtimes) - Myanmar will aim to increase its ranking on the World Bank’s ease of doing business index from 170 currently to less than 100 within the next 3 years, Vice President U Myint Swe said on July 20.

In ASEAN, Myanmar is the least favourable country to conduct business in. A total of 190 countries are included in the index.

With the rising volume of investment opportunities, it is possible for Myanmar to achieve that target if real efforts are made, he said during a meeting with private entrepreneurs at the Republic of the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (UMFCCI) office.

“If all our companies make all-out efforts and if all departments understand and imporve on the 10 indicators on doing business set out by the World Bank, Myanmar’s ranking can rise within the 100 rank,” he said. This includes state-owned companies, multinational corporations and local small-and-medium enterprises.

The 10 indicators are starting a business, dealing with construction permits, getting electricity, registering property, getting credit, protecting minority investors, paying taxes, trading across borders, enforcing contracts and resolving insolvency.

“According to experienced businessmen, some [countries] have good rankings but prospects are not as good there. For example, in our neighboring countries, there are frequent damages to facilities due to floods,” U Myint Swe said.

Although Myanmar ranks lower on the index compared to its neighbours, its prospects are better. For one thing, there are fewer occurrences of natural disasters, while labour is relatively cheaper after factoring in the level of skills and education in the country.

“We are informed that although we have a low ranking, some countries are very eager to invest in Myanmar. There are many good opportunities for Myanmar,” he continued.

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