Burma Business Delegation Heads to Japan

By Kyaw Hsu Mon 3 November 2016

RANGOON – A delegation of 32 business people traveled to Tokyo, Japan Thursday for a week-long trade trip led by finance minister U Kyaw Win and newly-appointed president of the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (UMFCCI) U Zaw Min Win.

Representatives from the banking, hotel and tourism, agriculture, electronics, and construction sectors will meet with their Japanese counterparts and attend the Myanmar Business Forum in Tokyo on Nov. 8, according to vice chairman of the UMFCCI Dr. Maung Maung Lay.

“There will be discussion about the banking sector, infrastructure development projects, manufacturing industry, and the stock exchange,” Maung Maung Lay said.

Burma’s State Counselor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi began a five-day state visit to Japan on Tuesday at the invitation of the Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

Abe pledged to provide almost US$8 billion in aid to Burma over the current government’s five-year term, prioritizing the peace process and developing infrastructure.

“The Japanese government is investing a lot of money in Burma,” said Dr. Maung Maung Lay. “Local business people related to infrastructure development projects funded by Japanese aid need to know how to work [with Japanese companies]. That’s why they are on the trip.”

“I hope that more business with Japan will follow,” he said, also remarking that Japanese counterparts are satisfied working with Burma.

Dr. Maung Maung Lay said that the business people joined the trip to Japan at their own expense.

Senior managing director of KBZ Group U Nyo Myint joined the trip with two KBZ directors—the daughters of KBZ’s chairman U Aung Ko Win.

U Nyo Myint told The Irrawaddy that he expected more business with Japanese partners in the banking sector following this trip.

According to data from the Directorate of Investment and Companies Administration, Japan’s investment in Burma reached US$219 million in the 2015-16 fiscal year compared to US$4.4 million in 2011-12.