The Myanmar Agricultural Bank on Pansodan Road in Kyauktada Township on Wednesday received the Blue Plaque of the Yangon Heritage Trust, in recognition of its importance as one of the city’s architectural landmarks.
The Blue Plaque is the sixth issued under the YHT’s initiative following City Hall, the Aya Bank Headquarter, the Armenian Church, Central Fire Station and the General Post Office.
Built in 1930, the Myanmar Agricultural Bank building originally served as the Yangon branch of Grindlay’s Bank. Myanmar’s modern banking system is one of the oldest in Asia, with international banks having been present in Yangon since the 1850s.
The building was turned into the National Museum in 1970.
Dr Thant Myint-U, founder and Chairman of Yangon Heritage Trust, said Myanmar, while looking to rejoin the global financial world, must remember and learn from its own checkered financial history.
“Bank buildings along Pansodan are a physical link to a past that we need to study if the country is going to do better in future,” he said.
In its incarnation as the National Museum, the building housed the Lion Throne of the Last King of Myanmar, which was looted by the British and taken to Calcutta. In 1996, the building resumed service as a bank, becoming a branch office of the Myanmar Industrial Development Bank and the Myanmar Agricultural Development Bank.
The commemorative Blue Plaque is part of the YHT’s efforts to promote and integrate Yangon’s unique heritage into a 21st Century vision of the metropolis as one of Asia’s most liveable cities.