Union Minister urges investors to participate in Rakhine’s journey to prosperity

U Thaung Tun 1 copy
Union Minister U Thaung Tun. Photo : Nay Lin

U Thaung Tun, Union Minister for Investment and Foreign Economic Relations, and Chairman of the Myanmar Investment Commission, has invited local and foreign investments to Rakhine State, calling the country’s diversified cultures and customs from different communities its strength, and noted the significant opportunities for the country.
The investment fair which is first of its kind in Rakhine State is held with the assistance from the Japan International Cooperation Agency-JICA, Japan External Trade Organization- JETRO, Myanmar Survey Research Co Ltd-MSR and private companies.
Speaking at the Rakhine State Investment Fair, the Union Minister said, “In Myanmar diversity is a source of strength. Myanmar has such great potential precisely because we are such a diverse country — consisting of peoples and communities, with distinct languages, cultures and traditions.
“Investment can build upon this diversity — bringing new ideas, new technologies, new ways of doing business — helping communities connect, beyond boundaries, through borders, and across continents,” said the Union Minister.
“With investment — the world opens up to us, and we open up to the world,” he said.
“This is just one of the many reasons why we welcome foreign investment in Myanmar and is why we welcome foreign investment into Rakhine,” he added.
But we do not sail into uncharted waters. We have a guide
“In 2018 this government launched the Myanmar Sustainable Development Plan describing a next wave of reform, designed to steer our country’s continued transition, along a common pathway, toward the emergence of a prosperous, peaceful, democratic federal Union,” U Thaung Tun said.
“Our MSDP consists of 3 pillars, 5 goals, 28 strategies and no less than 251 action plans – all firmly aligned with the global sustainable development agenda,” he added. “In line with both our MSDP and our new Myanmar Investment Promotion Plan, we recognise that government has a critical role to play in creating a more favourable, predictable and friendly investment climate,” said the Union Minister.
“Doing so will help to stimulate foreign and domestic investment, while ensuring a level playing field for all investors,” said the MIC Chairman.
“The Myanmar Investment Commission has been actively promoting responsible, sustainable, and mutually beneficial investment — that is, investment which does not prioritise short term returns at the expense of future generations,” he added.
“The MIC as Myanmar’s investment regulator, facilitator and promoter, it will continue to promote such a business-friendly and mutually beneficial investment environment,” he added. “We will also welcome investment that does not cause harm to the natural environment, and which serves the interests of our people. We will welcome investments which bring benefits to all stakeholders, including workers and host communities,” said the Union Minister.
“The MIC has also recently been placing special emphasis on increasing investment channelled into our States and Regions. It is true that, at an aggregate level, living standards throughout Myanmar have improved significantly. However, it is also true that inequality is prevalent in some areas.
“Rakhine State is uniquely positioned for many reasons,” said U Thaung Tun, “It is rich in natural resources, particularly oil and gas, and its strategic location makes it an ideal gateway for trade and commerce between China and India. Rakhine is uniquely positioned to support the emergence of economic and industrial zones.” “With its captivating range of pristine beaches and cultural heritage sites, Rakhine is a hidden treasure waiting to be discovered,” he added.
“I am pleased to see that initiatives such as the “My Beautiful Rakhine Photo Contest”, having received over 2,500 entries, are helping to showcase Rakhine’s beautiful beaches, lush farmlands and rich archaeological treasures — helping to further the promotion of Rakhine’s tourism potential,” said the Union Minister.
“Throughout this Investment Fair, through business networking opportunities, presentations made, and dialogues with experts in each area, we aim to connect foreign and domestic investors with the information they require to ensure a better appreciation of Rakhine’s as yet untapped economic potential,” said U Thaung Tun.
“Now is the time to invest in Rakhine State. By investing in this State, you will be joining us on a journey to build a prosperous and inclusive Rakhine better able thrive on its diversity,” he added.
“I want to say simply that this government remains resolute in its commitment to securing peace. We are committed to doing all in our power to resolve long and complex challenges — challenges which will only be exacerbated and prolonged by continued under-investment,” said U Thaung Tun.
“I know that the Rakhine State Government is fully committed to the development of the state. The Myanmar Investment Commission also is fully committed,” said U Thaung Tun, “To the audience today, what we seek from you is a similar level of commitment!”
“They say that you can’t get people to believe in your dream until you believe in it yourself. Well, ladies and gentlemen, I believe in Rakhine State. I believe in the dream of a prosperous, peaceful, diverse and economically vibrant Rakhine State,” he added.
“To investors I say to you — seek out new opportunities. Take those calculated risks. No return on investment was ever made by staying on the sidelines,” said U Thaung Tun.
“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail,” said the Union Minister. “We are all here because we have a clear-eyed vision of what we want and where we are headed, but nobody will put these dreams into reality until we do,” he said.
Afterwards, Rakhine State Chief Minister U Nyi Pu explained the investment opportunities in Rakhine State.
Afterwards, Japanese Ambassador Mr. Ichiro Maruyama said Japanese government would provide aid to Rakhine State through the UN and will also send directly to the state, said the ambassador.
Mr. Ichiro Maruyama said Japanese government would build about 80 basic education schools in the state and is also planning to provide assistance to power supply sector in Rakhine State. Afterward, Myanmar Survey Research Co Ltd- MSR presented the paper on investment opportunities survey in Rakhine State, officials and local and foreign investors on “Government Policy and Priority Sector”, “Doing Business in Rakhine State and Responsible Investment” and “Potentially of Rakhine State”.Over 600 local and foreign businessmen attended the fair and 24 projects were submitted to the Rakhine State Government.

— Thi Thi Min, Min Thit
Photo: Nay Lin

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