WTO members encourage Myanmar to continue on path of reintegrating into global economy

 Photo of Bo Aung  Kyaw Terminal, one of the major port terminals handling cargo ships and goods  in Yangon
Photo of Bo Aung Kyaw Terminal, one of the major port terminals handling cargo ships and goods in Yangon.

Members of the World Trade Organization (WTO) praised Myanmar for key reforms undertaken for boosting its economic reorientation to continue on the path of reintegrating into the global economy.
The WTO members expressed their encouragement to Myanmar at a follow-up workshop on Myanmar’s first trade policy review in Yangon on Friday.
They applauded Myanmar for enabling foreign companies to get telecommunications licenses, promoting public-private partnerships in the transport sector, allowing (100%) foreign equity participation in hotels and related businesses, and the central bank’s efforts to develop a master plan for the financial sector.
Despite opening up a number of its service sectors, further opening up of its foreign investment regime and improvement of the regulatory environment and business climate are needed to boost competitiveness in this area, the WTO members said.
“We recognized that Myanmar still needs additional efforts covering the range of policy domains such as customs procedures, customs valuation, trade facilitation, foreign investment, business environment, import and export licensing, taxes and tariffs”, U Win Min, deputy director-general of the Directorate of Trade of the Ministry of Commerce, said in his concluding remarks.
Further enforcement of intellectual property rights, revision of the foreign direct investment law and investment-related legislation and transparency of the tax regime, the lack of a bankruptcy law, competition policy and consumer protection and protection of property rights were among the concerns expressed by the members through the presentations of findings of Myanmar’s first trade policy review by WTO officials at the event.
Myanmar accepted a preparatory process for its first WTO trade review with a request by the WTO secretariat to respond to a questionnaire in mid-2012. Fact-finding missions took place throughout 2013, and the WTO’s Trade Policy Review Policy Body (TPRB) produced its first trade policy review of Myanmar at its meeting in March 2014.
Myanmar has been a WTO member since 1 January of 1995.

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