The Irrawaddy

Development Co to Build New City West of Yangon River 

The launching ceremony of the NYDC. /Shwe Lay/The Irrawaddy

YANGON — The Yangon regional government has formed the New Yangon Development Co Ltd (NYDC) to build a new city west of the Yangon River that it said will be twice the size of Singapore.

U Phyo Min Thein, the Yangon chief minister, introduced the company at The Lotte Hotel in Yangon on Saturday.

The company is fully owned and managed by the Yangon government, said U Phyo Min Thein. “The regional government will take responsibility for the project in order to reduce red tape,” he said.

“The area west of the Yangon River is less developed, and we’ll strive to develop it with this project. We will industrialize the area and create job opportunities,” he added.

Yangon regional chief minister U Phyo Min Thein speaks at the launching ceremony of the NYDC on March 31. /Shwe Lay/The Irrawaddy

The main aim of the project is to provide around two million jobs, he said. The NYDC was established with capital of 10 billion kyats (US$7.5 million) from the development funds allotted by the Union government to regional and state governments, said chairperson of the NYDC and Yangon regional minister for electricity, industry and transportation Daw Nilar Kyaw.

The regional government will also invite private investment in the project. “The infrastructural construction, which is the first phase of the new town project, will cost more than $1.5 billion,” said Serge Pun, the chief executive officer of the NYDC.

Serge Pun is a Myanmar businessman of Myanmar-Chinese descent, and is the chairman of Serge Pun & Associates Group (SPA Group), a multinational real estate firm, and Yoma Bank, a Myanmar-based bank.

“While I am serving as the CEO of NYDC, I and companies under my control will not bid for construction work in the new city project,” said Serge Pun.

The launching ceremony of the NYDC. /Shwe Lay/The Irrawaddy

The infrastructure project will include two bridges, roads, an industrial zone, a power plant, power stations, and water and sewage treatment plants, according to NYDC.

Yangon, the commercial capital of Myanmar, generates 19.3 trillion kyats, which is 26 percent of national GDP, according to the Yangon regional government.

“As the city’s population is expected to reach 10 million in the next 10 years, there is an urgent need to supply adequate housings, jobs, infrastructure, potable water and electricity,” said U Phyo Min Thein.

The new city will be modeled after China’ Shenzhen and Malaysia’s Iskandar, said Serge Pun. According to the previous southwest city expansion plan, the new city would cover some 30,000 acres on the west side of the Yangon River, including land in Kyimyindaing, Seikgyikanaungto and Twante townships.

YNDC will later announce the timeframe of the project and tender for construction works, said Daw Nilar Kyaw.

Translated from Burmese by Thet Ko Ko.