Ministry in Myanmar 2016Myanmar Ministry 2016
Myanmar's Foreign Ministry is headed by Aung San Suu Kyi.
Myanmar's new chairman cuts the number of government departments from 36 to 21
Under the new, tightened schedule, many departments will be consolidated, while three departments will be eliminated under the former administration and the overall number of departments will be reduced from 36 to 21. It has only been suggested a new Ministry of Education, a further sign from the new National League for Democracy (NLD) administration that it is taking the question of Myanmar's ethnical variety seriously.
According to estimates, minorities make up 30 to 40 per cent of Myanmar's 51 million inhabitants. All six presidential office departments will be brought together to form a sole presidential office ministry. It would abolish the Ministry of Sport, Co-operatives, Scientific and Technological Affairs. The Ministry of Information, however, which has been criticized as a state machine of publicity, will be upheld.
We expect to announce the name of the new minister in the House next weekend. NLD can only nominate 18 minister, as the Myanmar commander-in-chief elects the Internal and Defense and Frontier Secretaries under the Myanmar Convention. On 1 April, the new administration will take up its duties for a period of five years.
Burma's government departments announce 100-day plan - Documents
Following a landslide win in Myanmar's parliamentary elections on 8 November 2015, the National League for Democracy (NLD) administration of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi took over on 30 March 2016, with U Htin Kyaw appointed president. In the first few month after taking power, the new NLD administration (the government), which now comprises 22 ministries instead of 36, said it would publish a "100-day plan" with the government's priority.
So far, the goverment has not issued a 100-day global agenda and we know it does not do so. But several ministries have posted personal 100-day schedules on their Web sites and/or through interviewing on their ministry's Web sites, on Facebook or in their local Newspaper. This customer newsletter highlights the key points of interest to international investment in these 100-day investment packages.
Aung San Suu Kyi's government's investiture on March 30, 2016, the first civil administration in many years, was marked by an upswing of confidence, but it also placed great hopes on the Aung San Suu Kyi administration to implement a comprehensive and rapid program of overhaul. In view of this anticipation, the authorities indicated that they would be publishing a calendar of reforms for the first 100 working years.
In the two-month period after taking up its duties, the administration has still not issued an overall 100-day formal timetable, and we know that it does not do so. But several ministries have made pronouncements on the priority they have identified for their ministries, both in the media and on Burma's federal agencies' web sites and papers.
The most important points which have been promised by the most important ministries are listed below. It cannot be considered to be an officially binding rule, as there is no officially binding government declaration. Although some of the changes that have been promised have already been put into effect, nothing is preventing the government from doing anything other than what has been solicited.
To this end, less than two month after taking power, there have already been several changes in the government's membership, suggesting that the government is still trying to define its policy and form, but also showing that it is capable and ready to adjust quickly.
Whilst the government has not made an formal statement of its 100-day plans, several ministries have published their plans and political and implementing prioritisation. While most of the pronouncements are obscure and mainly contain high-level information on the ministry's priority, there are some important points that need to be taken along by overseas capital.
MOTC ( "Ministry of Communications and Transport") (created by the fusion of the Ministry of Railways, the Ministry of Transports and the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology) has launched an aggressive 100-day roadmap and plans to create a nationwide transportation strategy. Yangon-Mandalay is a clear governmental priority.
MOC ( "Ministry of Construction") has indicated that it will carry out the necessary repair work on the Yangon-Mandalay motorway within 100 working hours of taking over. MOTC has also indicated that of the 17 current rail track infrastructures under consideration, it will primarily implement Yangon-Mandalay line schemes. MOC is also working with the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank and the Japan International Cooperation Agency to evaluate road conditions and devise a road improvement road map for the years ahead.
MOTC has also indicated that Myanmar National Airlines will launch a programme to service and maintain 30 ATR aircraft under the control of the MOTC. The MOTC is currently in negotiations on a Japan loans (although it is not clear whether it is with a Japan based banking institution, a Japan based aid organisation or the Japan government) to fund the fast expansion and building of a Mandalay marina.
MOTC has indicated that it will conclude negotiations on the funding deal within 100 working days. MOTC also said it would be implementing a five-year Ayeyarwaddy River roadmap with the support of the World Bank. MOTC has an aggressive project schedule and although these are not reached within 100 working hours, the schedule indicates which government support is foreseen.
An interesting notice for telecommunication enterprises is that MOTC plans to launch a call for tenders from the Post and Telecommunication Department (PTD) for the 2600 million radiofrequencies. No timetable has been set by the ATC. MOTC also plans to continue developing the Myanmar National Satellite program and has indicated that it will continue to upscale its subterranean fiber optics and electrical wiring installation.
Myanmar's biggest challenge is to meet the ever-increasing demand for electricity (especially in Yangon) and renew an aging and untrustworthy electricity grid. Myanma Alin (Global New Light of Myanmar) was cited in an May 16, 2016 statement by U Pe Zin Tun, Minister of Electricity and Renewable Energies, that the Ministry of Electricity and Renewable Energies (MOEE) has a major mandate for electricity, opera -tion, natural resources and renewable energies in Myanmar.
Its aim is to support publicly-interested schemes, in particular those aimed at increasing energy supply, stabilising the allocation and transfer through the building of auxiliary generating stations and auxiliary electricity transport pipelines (and the rehabilitation of current infrastructure). MOEE identifies two large scale project to be finalised within the first 100 working days:
i) Supplementary electricity production from the 30 MW CCGT facility in Myingyan (which should have been finished on 18 May 2016) and ii) the 133 MW Myingyan CNG facility to be finished on 31 May 2016. At Yangon, MOEE announces the 33 CT Wah Ta Yar-Shwe Pyi Thar aerial line and the 11 CT Wah Ta Yar Thar open line.
The MOEE has already indicated that five more communication links will be completed in other areas by July 2016. MOEE is committed to ensuring the implementation of applicable legislation and regulations to encourage FDI and partnerships in the field of renewable energies. Investments in the electricity and utilities sectors already account for over 60% of the country's currency revenues, and the government plans to give this area further priorities.
MOI is responsible for building the Myanmar manufacturing community and has indicated that it will concentrate on building engineering expertise (through higher learning and engineering workshops), opening factories/facilities of general interest (production of medicinal and pharmaceuticals materials, building materials, etc.) and completing megastores.
For this reason, the MOI established a SME DEV division in 2012. MOI has indicated that it will further promote the growth of SME's with the help of multinational organizations and aims to provide appropriate funding, know-how and HR to underpin them. U Aung Naing Oo, Director General of the Directorate of Investment and Enterprise Management (DICA), under the patronage of the new Ministry of Planning and Finance (MOPF), announces that the DICA will implement changes to the enrolment fee to be paid to the DICA as part of MOPF's 100-day programme.
DICA has lowered the fee for joint-stock corporations to 500,000 MMK and raised the fee for publicly traded corporations to 2.5 million MMK to stimulate SMEs in Myanmar to enroll with them. These new tariffs will apply from 1 June 2016. The DICA announced that these changes were in line with the government's effort to stimulate domestic and international investments.
Although these changes can be regarded as insignificant, their swift application is a signal of the government's engagement to support businesses and investments in Myanmar. MOPF ( "through the Internal Revenue Department") has also noted that trade taxation in Myanmar (currently 5%) is the lowliest in the area, as the neighboring country is 10% on national averages.
Whilst this was not included in the government's announcement on the so-called 100-day plan, the early trends for the government and legislature seem to prioritize legislation on policy, government and people. That does not necessarily mean that the government does not give priority to business or investments, but most electoral representatives who began their terms of office on 1 April 2016 are more acquainted with political and humanitarian matters.
President U Htin Kyaw ratified the State Council Act 2016, the first bill passed by Congress. It aims to foster multiparty democratic rule, secure a market-oriented country and enhance Myanmar's peacemaking and economic wellbeing. Below is the enactment of laws since 1 April 2016:
Furthermore, the Foreign Investments Act is currently being reviewed by DICA with the support of the International Finance Corporation/World Bank and a bill is being debated and negociated. Although it is not quite clear how much the new Foreign Investments Act will change the present legal environment, it is likely to have a significant effect on the Myanmar investments environment.
Myanmar Companies Act is also being reviewed by DICA with the support of the Asian Development Bank and has undergone a process of open consultations with updated draft legislation which will be made available by DICA on its website. Please read our newsletter for a more in-depth look at the international investments regimes.