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Last updated : Nov 2009
Myanmar Business
Myanmar Business Overview - TravelPuppy.com
Myanmar Economy

Agriculture, mainly livestock and fishing, is the largest single sector of Myanmar’s economy; however, it still relies on traditional non-mechanised means. Rice, for the most part, the major export income, has declined in importance in line with the steadily depressed condition of the world market in the products that are bought and sold. Teak wood is Myanmar’s other principal export (most of it felled and traded unlawfully). Additional crops are oil seeds, cotton, sugar cane, rubber and jute.

Myanmar features rich deposits of copper, tin, zinc, silver, gemstones and coal: trading exploitation has started recently. Though the country’s oil production, never substantial, has been declining over the past ten years, there are thoughts to be large quantities of unused resources of both oil and gas in Myanmar's land. Gas produced in Myanmar satisfies about half of the country’s energy requirements; hydroelectric power covers most of the rest.

A great variety of manufactured products are locally assembled but most of it is imported. Otherwise, the country’s industrial sector is mainly involved in processing locally produced raw materials.

Additional main sources of earnings are opium trafficking and gemstone mining, both are chiefly controlled by the military government and are primarily used to finance consequential arms purchases. There are few dependable economic statistics for the country; 2002 inflation was estimated to be at 26%.

Following years of political isolation, Myanmar gained ASEAN membership in July 1997. The Government has attempted to attract the interest from foreign investment companies by easing its preceding strict controls on trading activity. However, most possible investors are put off by the government’s appalling human rights record and the prospect of widespread international opprobrium.

The economic future of Myanmar relies mainly upon political developments.

Business

Lightweight suits are normally worn by day and jackets are required for formal meetings. Most commercial business is carried out in English. Business cards in Burmese language are recommended.

The ideal time to visit Myanmar is between October and February.

Office hours: Monday to Friday 9.30 am to 4.30 pm.

Commercial Information

There are more than 20 Government Corporations dealing with all aspects of business. The Inspection and Agency Corporation in Yangon encourages foreign companies in business. For more details, contact the commercial section of the Embassy (see Contact section).
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