Myanmar signs pact to set up bourse with Japanese help
TOKYO, May 29 – Myanmar signed a pact today to set up a securities exchange with the help of Daiwa Securities Group and the Tokyo Stock Exchange in a bid to attract foreign investment to the resource-rich country opening after decades of isolation.
The agreement will help Myanmar form capital markets crucial for tapping investment amid competition between Asian powers eager to build ties with the nation following the recent suspension of most Western sanctions.
“When the capital market is formed and after it starts functioning properly, Myanmar’s economy will develop rapidly, helping the country to get richer,” said Takashi Fukai, the president of Daiwa Research Institute, Daiwa’s information-gathering arm.
Under the memorandum of understanding signed in the Myanmar capital, Naypyitaw, the Japanese counterparts will invite trainees from Myanmar and support the management of the exchange.
A source with knowledge of the matter said last month it was hoped the bourse would launch in 2015.
The exchange will not be the country’s first experiment with a stock market. Daiwa was also the joint venture partner in the tiny Myanmar Securities Exchange, which has only attracted two listings since its establishment in 1996.
Myanmar was in the grip of military rule for decades but in the past year a military-backed civilian government has introduced broad reforms and shown signs of pulling back from the orbit of China.
This week, India signed a raft of agreements with the country in the first visit by an Indian leader in 25 years, while later today, Nobel Peace Prize winner and opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi is due to venture outside the country for the first time since 1988.
Many Japanese companies are interested in investing in Myanmar. Japan’s second-biggest bank, Mizuho Corporate Bank, has opened an office there and Japanese convenience store chain Lawson Inc is also planning to move there.
All Nippon Airways Co, Japan’s biggest airline by passenger numbers, said it would resume regular flights to Myanmar for the first time in 12 years. – Reuters