Japan has put investments of US$468 million into Thilawa Special Economic Zone (SEZ) so far, accounting for over 43 per cent of total foreign direct investments, according to Myanmar Japan Thilawa Development Limited.
Thailand was second with FDI of over $130 million. The manufacturing industry attained the highest FDI of over US$773million, followed by the trading sector and the logistics sector. FDI also flowed into the service business, real estate and hotel sectors. The total amount of FDI comes to more than US$1.7billion so far.
Thilawa SEZ was initiated with the support of the Myanmar and Japanese governments. Companies from a total of 17 countries- Japan, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, America and Australia, and others – invested in Zone A, which covers 400 hectares.
Development of Zone A is 96 per cent completed. Construction of Zone B on 101 hectares of land is projected to commence soon and slated to be completed in mid-2018. Most of the factories in Thilawa SEZ manufacture industrial products such as construction materials, food products, aluminum, fuel oil, agricultural machines, medicines, and fertilizer with an aim to replace imports.
The investors who create more job opportunities, are engaged in export business, and cooperate with the local industry outside zones are more likely to be given priority to make investments in Thilawa SEZ.
The country is currently implementing three Special Economic Zones — Thilawa, Kyaukpyu and Dawei. Of the three, Thilawa is leading with its better infrastructure and successful businesses.