German Myanmar Business Chamber launches with eye to increased bilateral trade

 GMBC President Jens Knoke (left), seated next to GMBC Treasurer Philipp Hoffmann, makes a presentation at a press conference for the launch of the German Myanmar Business Chamber in Yangon on Friday.
GMBC President Jens Knoke (left), seated next to GMBC Treasurer Philipp Hoffmann, makes a presentation at a press conference for the launch of the German Myanmar Business Chamber in Yangon on Friday.

The German Myanmar Business Chamber officially launched Friday in Yangon, with the aim of fostering commercial partnerships between Europe’s largest economy and Southeast Asia’s fastest-growing market.
The chamber will serve as a business platform between German and Myanmar companies, while also seeking to establish a dialogue with the Myanmar government on economic frameworks, the GMBC’s Founding President Mr Jens Knoke said.
With an inaugural membership of more than 50 companies, the Chamber aims to work closely with the Delegation of German Industry and Commerce that has operated an office in Myanmar since 2013, and help develop the country’s private sector through the transfer of knowledge, it added.
“The GMBC will work in a spirit of partnership,” Mr Knoke said. “In order to succeed, German and Myanmar companies need to be committed to sharing market insights and knowledge with each other and building business networks.”
As Germany has a strong basis in manufacturing, a priority development area for Myanmar, the Chamber’s German members will share know-how on efficient technologies and management, as well as building responsible and sustainable business practices, added Mr Knoke, the general manager of Henkel Myanmar, which produces laundry, home care and beauty products.
Despite 60-year-old diplomatic ties between the two countries, the GMBC is the first bilateral business chamber for German and Myanmar companies in the country.
Since Myanmar opened its doors to the international business community in 2011, trade with Germany has increased rapidly. German trade statistics showed the country’s exports to Myanmar last year reached 130 million euros (US $147 million) while its imports from Myanmar totaled $100 million, a staggering 79 percent increase from the previous year.
Germany’s exports to Myanmar are machinery, data-processing equipment, electrical and optical goods, chemical products, motor vehicles and parts and pharmaceutical products, while its main import from Myanmar is garments.

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