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The $ 130 million Peninsula Yangon Hotel project in Yangon is halted for a year

Hong Kong and Shanghai Hotels Holdings, which operates high-end luxury Peninsula hotels, announced on May 21 that they would suspend a $ 130 million construction project in Yangon for a year, the Nikkei Asia reported. They have reached an agreement with their partners to suspend the Peninsula Yangon hotel project for 12 months due to the current situation in Myanmar , Clement Cox, chief executive of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, told shareholders at the company’s annual meeting on May 21.

It is mentioned that they would continue to monitor the situation in Myanmar and hoped to restart the project as soon as the situation stabilized. The project also includes the renovation of the former colonial-style Myanmar Railways headquarters in downtown Yangon into an 88-room Peninsula Hotel. Hongkong and Shanghai Hotels own 70 percent of the project, with the remaining 30 percent owned by two listed companies, Serge Pun & Associates, one of Myanmar’s leading private conglomerates, and Yoma Strategic Investments and First Myanmar Investment.

Among the projects of the well-known company named the Yoma Central, Peninsula project is included. A company spokesman said on May 21 that the Yoma Central project had been suspended and that all parties concerned were still determined to restart the project. Linn Mu-Holland, director of Group Corporate Affairs at the Hong Kong company, said the project was suspended last April. It is also mentioned that it was too early to say in detail what conditions needed to restart the project and that safety is a top priority. Until August last year, the company was expected to complete the project by 2022. The company’s annual report, released in March, said it was “extremely concerned” about the current violence and instability and would continue to assess the need for immediate response to long-term decisions on the project.

Source: Daily Eleven

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Rice export to China through Muse border checkpoint plummets

Myanmar’s rice export to China through the Muse border checkpoint has plummeted recently, said Vice-Chair U Min Thein of the Muse Rice Wholesale Centre. The drop was due to the closure of the Man Wein checkpoint, which is the major place of trading of rice and broken rice between Myanmar and China following the outbreak of COVID-19 positive cases. With the Man Wein checkpoint closing, export items, including rice and broken rice, are being traded through China via the Kyin San Kyawt checkpoint. Earlier, Myanmar exported about 30,000 bags of rice and broken rice to China daily. But now, only about 10,000 bags have been shipped, he added. Previously, about 70 truckloads of rice and broken rice were traded daily through Man Wein checkpoint. Now, only 24 truckloads are traded. The export has dropped one third. Though three truckloads used to go earlier, only one truckload would go now. Earlier, about 30,000 bags of rice and broken rice were traded through the Man Wein checkpoint.

In contrast, now only 10,000 bags are being traded through Kyin San Kyawt checkpoint. Currently, the price of Muse market is 117 Yuans for a bag of broken rice, 128 Yuans for Nga Sein, 129 Yuans for Thuka and 137 Yuans for Shin Tone, according to the Muse Rice Wholesale Centre. The Man Wein checkpoint has been closed for over one month because of the outbreak of COVID-19. According to Muse 105th Trade Zone of the Trade Department under the Ministry of Commerce, China has no plan to reopen it yet. With the declining number of COVID-19 positive patients in the Kyalgaung area, the lockdown restrictions imposed on the Kyalgaung area were lifted starting from 4 May. But, the observation is still going on for another three more months. As a result, the Man Wein checkpoint has not been planned to reopen, according to the announcement of the Muse 105th Mile Trade Zone, the Trade Department on 5 May.

In addition, in coordination with the Shweli Foreign Relations Department, the Man Wein crossing has not been reopened yet. It will reopen only after having the detailed plan, according to the statement. The relevant traders will also be informed if there is an official notification from China to reopen the border. Moreover, according to the Muse Rice Wholesale Centre, China’s Customs authorities granted rice export licenses to 47 Myanmar companies on 26 February 2021. This year, the Chinese government has allowed more rice export licenses to more companies. So, the volume of rice export will increase this year compared to that of the previous year. During the first three months of the current financial year, Myanmar exported over 720,000 tonnes of rice and broken rice worth over US$ 275 million, according to Myanmar Rice Federation. However, Myanmar has expected to export only 2 million tonnes of rice in this FY because the weather changes have affected irrigation water. Consequently, summer paddy cultivation will have to be reduced, said U Ye Min Aung, the Chairman of the Myanmar Rice Federation. Myanmar generated over $ 800 million from rice export in the previous FY — 2019-2020 ending 30 September with an estimated volume of over 2.5 million tonnes.

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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Eindu-Kawkareik road, part of greater Mekong sub-region east-west economic corridor, completed

The inauguration ceremony for Eindu-Kawkareik road, connecting Hpa-an District and Kawkareik District in Kayin State,
was held yesterday morning in line with the COVID-19 guidelines. The ceremony was attended by Union Minister for
Construction U Shwe Lay, Chairman of the Kayin State Administration Council U Saw Myint Oo and members of the council, officials from the ministry and relevant departments/organizations and residents.

At the meeting, Union Minister U Shwe Lay said the Eindu-Kawkareik road is part of the Greater Mekong Sub-region East-West Economic Corridor and also part of the India-Myanmar-Thailand trilateral road. Viet Nam, Laos and Thailand have completed their parts Eindu-Kawkareik road, part of greater Mekong sub-region east-west economic corridor, completed in the East-West Economic Corridor as Asian Highway Standard Class 2-level.

Myanmar has just upgraded its parts of the road. He said the upgraded Eindu-Kawkareik road would be a major trade route connecting with neighbouring Thailand. It would speed up the flow of goods and reduce transport costs for regional and international vehicles. As part of the project, upgrading Kyondoe port ring road will also benefit from transporting goods from Laos and Viet Nam to Mawlamyine in a short time at a low cost. The upgraded Eindu-Kawkareik road to an international standard road (Asian Highway Standard Class 2) is 64.735 kilometres long and made of nylon asphalt (AC) type.

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar