During this week, there are some interesting facts about Myanmar Economy. Facts include drop of rice export volume, taxation for e-commerce, regulation changes for tourism sector, and recorded dollar exchange rate.

Is Increasing Exchange Rate a crisis for Myanmar Economy?

First of all, we want to start with exchange rate. Myanmar Economy is an import focus economy. Most of the consumer goods, almost all automobiles, most of medical products and also fuels are import products. At private banks and exchange counters, one-dollar values 1445 of Myanmar kyats. That means export traders can get benefit while importers suffer.

Although current export earnings are not so high, there are some young entrepreneurs who interest to start manufacturing businesses. Some have already started and their products are on the shelves of City Mart and other convenience stores. One day they can export their products. One day these young entrepreneurs will become major drivers of Myanmar Economy. Although current trade deficit is more than $1 billion, we hope more export businesses in the future. However, local entrepreneurs need to organize advantage of low labor cost and advance technology.

How Rice export helps Myanmar Economy?

Secondly, Myanmar got increased $1 Billion of maritime trade volumes. But export volume of rice decreases compared to last year. Rice is major export product for Myanmar Economy. We found out one interesting thing! Although volume of exported rice fell, export value increases. According to the data from Ministry of Commerce, our country got US $ 106 million from export of rice over 383,000 tons last year. This year traders earn US $ 109 million while the export volume decreases more than 50000 tons. Do we get more income from same export volume? This question comes to our mind. Or our rice quality increases? May be or may be not! We can prove that there are opportunities in Myanmar Agriculture sector.

Tourism: Visa Free and Cash Requirement

Then, regulation changes in tourism sector may decrease number of foreign visitors. Among local business owners, question is whether cash requirement for visitors might become another burden for tourism. Tourism industry is very competitive now. There are many tour agents and also hotels. At every tourist attraction places, competition is very high. Visitors from Japan, China and South Korea can get visa exemption but they need to carry US$ 1000 as cash requirement. Visitors can stay 30 days in Myanmar. These 3 countries are the most developed countries in Asia. So, there is no mistake to give visa exemption to these 3 countries. Also, local bank can solve cash requirement issue. Most local banks have business relationship with international credit card companies. So, cash requirement upon arrival is not a big issue. Visa free for three big Asia tigers may rise up the number of tourists!

Whatever, tourism is one of the biggest sectors of Myanmar Economy.

E-commerce should develop more!

Finally, government is trying taxation for e-commerce sector. Currently, there are more than 10 e-commerce brands in Myanmar. Although, local shoppers normally buy from Facebook pages, we see new e-commerce platforms this year. Some are trying to sell online not only from Facebook but also from own platform. E-commerce companies have some challenges.

One of the biggest challenges is how to attract visitors to website. Almost every local person uses only Facebook. They read news and articles, and search what they want on Facebook. Moreover, local consumers buy from Facebook pages. Facebook is also major entertainment platform for Myanmar users. It is almost impossible to attract locals to website.

However, there are some good new. Consumption of Myanmar people has increased since 2010.  E-commerce owners should provide some free stuffs to consumers. Consumers only need to subscribe or register on e-commerce platforms. Then they can get free stuffs. Depending on business model, owners should choose the most interesting content for target audience.

We think that’s enough for this week. We also provide some ideas as best as we can. You can give comments or send messages to us at anytime. See you next week!

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