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YGEA urges members to manage gold market volatility

Yangon Region Gold Entrepreneurs Association (YGEA) urged its members to regulate trade in order to deal with market volatility. Last 28 August, YGEA made five decisions, including the strategic trade control, at the monthly meeting. At present, along with the Kyat depreciation and the gold price gain in the international market, the precious pure gold metal stands at K1,688,000 per tical (0.578 ounce, or 0.016 kilogramme). The global gold price stood at only US$1,815 per ounce at present, while the US dollar exchange rate is worth above K1,700. Despite the domestic gold price staying in the upward trend, the market is pretty sluggish, according to the YGEA.

Earlier, about 50 viss (a viss equals 1.6 kg) were daily traded. At present, the market sees sales of only 5-10 viss. On 12 May, the gold hit an all-time high of K1,709,000 per tical in history. In January 2021, the gold price was ranged between the minimum of K1,316,000 per tical (28 January) and the maximum of K1,336,000 per tical (6 January). It reached an all-time high of K1,410,000 per tical on 3 February and hit the minimum of K1,340,000 per tical on 2 February. In March, the rate fluctuated between the highest of K1,391,000 (25 March) and the lowest of K1,302,000 (4 March).

The price was registered the highest of K1,455,000 (30 April) and the lowest of K1,389,000 (1 April). The price reached an all-time highest of K1,709,000 (12 May) and the lowest of K1,447,000 in May. The price moved in the maximum of K1,575,500 (11 June) and the minimum of K1,543,000 (19 June). Last month, it fluctuated between K1,562,300 (26 Jul) and K1,587,000 (K1,587,000), the gold traders said. According to gold traders, the local gold reached the lowest level of K1,310,500 (2 September) and the highest level of K1,314,000 (1 September).

In October, the rate ranged between K1,307,800 (30 October) and K1,316,500 (21 October). The rate fluctuated between the highest of K1,317,000 (9 November) and the lowest of K1,270,000 (30 November). In December, the pure yellow metal priced moved in the range of 1,280,000 (1 December) and 1,332,000 (28 December). With global gold prices on the uptick, the domestic price hit fresh highs in 2019, reaching K1,000,000 per tical between 17 January and 21 February, crossing K1,100,000 (22 June to 5 August), climbing to over 1,200,000 (7 August-4 September), and then reaching a record high of K1,300,000 on 5 September 2019.

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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Thailand ranks first among regional trade partners this FY

The bilateral trade with the neighbouring Thailand, Myanmar’s major trading partner among ASEAN member countries, amounted to US$3.84 billion in the past nine months (October-June) of the current financial year 2020-2021, the statistics issued by the Central Statistical Organization under the Ministry of Planning and Finance indicated. Thailand has been Myanmar’s largest trade partner among the regional countries, followed by Singapore and Malaysia. Moreover, Myanmar’s exports mostly go to Thailand after the main trade partner outside region, China. The ministry reported that exports surpassed imports in trade with Thailand, with exports reaching over $2.442 billion and imports valued at over $1.399 billion.

Thailand accounted for 18.48 per cent of total trade in 2016-2017 FY with estimated trade value of US$4.6 billion, 19.17 pc in 2017- 2018 FY with trade value of $5.57 billion, 40.38 pc in 2018-2019 FY with $5.46 billion and over 40 pc in 2019-2020 FY with $5.117 billion respectively. Exports of natural gas from Taninthayi Region contributed to the enormous increase in border trade with Thailand in the previous years. The corn exports to Thailand has shown a significant increase since 2019, the Ministry of Commerce stated. Myanmar primarily exports natural gas, fishery products, coal, tin concentrate (SN 71.58 per cent), coconut (fresh and dry), beans, corns, bamboo shoots, sesame seeds, garment, footwear, plywood and veneer, broken rice and other commodities to Thailand.

It imports capital goods such as machinery, raw industrial goods such as cement and fertilizers, and consumer goods such as cosmetics, vegetable oil and food products from the neighbouring country. Myanmar is carrying out border trade with the neighbouring country Thailand through Tachilek, Myawady, Myeik, Mawtaung, Hteekhee, Kawthoung and Meisei border areas respectively. Among them, Myawady handled the largest trade in border trade with Thailand, followed by Hteekhee. Nevertheless, the trading activity via border is sluggish amid the COVID-19 surge. Consequently, the trade via land border slightly declined in the current mini budget years of FY 2020-2021 as against last year. Apart from its main trade partner China, Myanmar’s external trade was mostly carried out with the regional trade partners.

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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CMP garment exports plummet to US$2.5 bln in current FY

Exports of garments manufactured under the cut-make-pack (CMP) system touched a low of US$2.5 billion between 1 October and 30 June in the current FY2020-2021, according to data from the Ministry of Commerce. Myanmar’s garment exports witnessed a decline of over 20 per cent in the past nine months compared with a-year ago period on the back of slump in demand by European Union market, the Ministry of Commerce stated. The figures plunged from over $3 billion in the corresponding period of last FY2019-2020. The garment industry is facing cancellation of order and slump in output, new orders. However, The Swedish fashion retailer H&M is gradually placing orders from Myanmar again after it paused in March. Then, more international fashion retailers such as Primark and Bestseller started to resume new orders.

Additionally, Germany will also continue its support for Myanmar garment businesses so that Myanmar women can continue their livings, Germany Embassy Yangon’s Facebook posted. Nonetheless, the COVID-19 infections are spiking in the country and all the CMP factories are temporarily closed down during the official public holidays. The garment sector is among the prioritized sectors driving up exports. The CMP garment industry emerged as a promising one, with preferential trade from Western countries. But, we cannot expect normalcy for now due to the possible disruption in logistics and supply sector and other serious consequences amid the COVID-19 impacts, traders stressed.

Myanmar’s manufacturing sector is largely concentrated in garment and textiles produced on the Cutting, Making, and Packaging basis, and it contributes to the country’s GDP to a certain extent. Myanmar mainly exports CMP garments to markets in Japan and Europe, along with the Republic of Korea, China, and the US. The export value of CMP garments was only $850 million in the 2015-2016 FY, but it has tripled over the past two FYs. In the 2016-2017 FY, about $2 billion was earned from exports of CMP garments. The figure increased to an estimated $2.5 billion in the 2017-2018 FY and $2.2 billion in the 2018 mini-budget period (from April to September). It tremendously grew to $4.6 billion in the 2018-2019 FY and $4.8 billion in the 2019-2020 FY, according to the Commerce Ministry.

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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Two million doses of Sinopharm COVID-19 vaccines arrive

A total of two million doses of Sinopharm COVID-19 vaccines, purchased from the People’s Republic of China, arrived at Yangon International Airport yesterday evening. The vaccines were received by the team led by the Yangon Region Public Health Department Head at the airport and stored at the Central Storage Facility for Vaccine in Yangon. The newly-arrived COVID-19 vaccines will be distributed to respective regions and states via roads and with the help of Tatmadaw aircraft under the necessary temperature. The Ministry of Health has been administering the COVID-19 vaccines in states/ regions as per the national priority programme.

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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300 companies struck off register due to AR absence in July DICA

A total of 300 companies was struck off the register in July as they failed to submit an annual return (AR) on the online registry system, MyCO, according to the Directorate of Investment and Company Administration (DICA). The DICA has notified any registered company which fails to submit its AR on MyCO are to be suspended. The DICA found that in July, 300 companies failed to restore their status within six months of suspension under 430 (F) of Myanmar Companies Law. The companies were struck off the register starting from 5, 9 and 16 July respectively, according to the DICA’s notification.

All registered companies need to file AR on the MyCO registry system within two months of incorporation, and at least once every year (not later than one month after the anniversary of the incorporation), according to Section 97 of the law. According to Section 266 (A) of the Myanmar Companies Law 2017, public companies must sub mit annual returns and financial statements (G-5) simultaneously. All overseas corporations must submit ARs in the prescribed format on MyCO within 28 days of the financial year ending, as per Section 53 (A-1) of the Myanmar Companies Law in 2017. As per DICA’s report, more than 16,000 companies were suspended for failing to submit AR forms within the due date. Newly established companies are required to submit ARs within two months of incorporation or face a fine of K100,000 for filing late returns.

The DICA has notified that any company which fails to submit its AR within 13 months will be notified of its suspension (I- 9A). If it fails to submit the AR within 28 days of receiving the notice, the system will show the company’s status as suspended. Companies can restore their status only after shelling out a fine of K50,000 for AR fee, K100,000 for restoration of the company on the Register, and K100,000 for late filing of documents, totalling K250,000. If a company fails to restore its status within six months of suspension, the registrar will strike its name off the register, according to the DICA notice.

The registration and re-registration of companies on the MyCO website commenced on 1 August 2018, keeping in line with the Myanmar Companies Law 2017. The number of companies registered on the online registry system, MyCO, topped more than 2,000 in the first half of this year. Earlier, MyCO received more than 1,000 applications from new companies every month. During the public holidays from 23 to 31 August, the DICA is offering services for investment and company registration at the Head Office located at No.1 Thitsar Road, Yankin Township of Yangon Region and One- Stop-Service is opened at No. 49, Seinlemay lane, Kabar Aye Road, Yankin Township for the department coordination matters, the DICA announced. At present, 100 per cent of the applicants are using the online registration platform, according to data provided by the DICA.

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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COVID-19 vaccines distributed nationwide for second injections

The Ministry of Health conducts vaccination programmes in respective regions/states for target populations. Starting 26 July 2021, the ministry used Sinopharm and Sinovac vaccines donated by China and purchased from China to vaccinate the public for the first injection. For the second dose, the ministry distributed the vaccines via land or with the help of Tatmadaw (Air) and MAI to the remote areas starting 21 August 2021. The vaccines were allocated to Mon, Kayin, Ayeyawady, Bago, Taninthayi, Shan, Magway, Sagaing, Mandalay, Nay Pyi Taw, Kachin and Rakhine until 25 August 2021. These vaccines were also used to vaccinate the factory workers in Yangon, Mandalay, Bago and Ayeyawady regions.

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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Myanmar gold price soars to K1.66 mln per tical tracking global cues

The price of precious yellow metal touched a high of K1,660,500 per tical (0.578 ounces, or 0.016 kilogrammes) in the domestic market following the gain in the international gold market, according to Yangon Region Gold Entrepreneurs Association (YGEA). The global gold price stood at only US$1,740 per ounce in the previous days and dramatically rose to $1,804 per ounce on 24 August. Additionally, Kyat is depreciating in the local forex market, which is another cause of price gain in the domestic gold market. The US dollar exchange rate is worth above K1,700. Despite the domestic gold staying in the upward trend, the market is pretty sluggish, according to YGEA. Earlier, about 50 viss (a viss equals 1.6kg) were daily traded.

At present, the market sees sales of only 5-10 visses. On 12 May, the gold hit an all-time high of K1,709,000 per tical in history. In January 2021, the gold price was ranged between the minimum of K1,316,000 per tical (28 January) and the maximum of K1,336,000 per tical (6 January). It reached an all-time high of K1,410,000 per tical on 3 February and hit the minimum of K1,340,000 per tical on 2 February. In March, the rate fluctuated between the highest of K1,391,000 (25 March) and the lowest of K1,302,000 (4 March).

The price has registered the highest of K1,455,000 (30 April) and the lowest of K1,389,000 (1 April). The price reached an alltime highest of K1,709,000 (12 May) and the lowest of K1,447,000 in May. The price moved in the maximum of K1,575,500 (11 June) and the minimum of K1,543,000 (19 June). Last month, it fluctuated between K1,562,300 (26 Jul) and K1,587,000 (K1,587,000), the gold traders said. According to gold traders, the local gold reached the lowest level of K1,310,500 (2 September) and the highest level of K1,314,000 (1 September).

In October, the rate ranged between K1,307,800 (30 October) and K1,316,500 (21 October). The rate fluctuated between the highest of K1,317,000 (9 November) and the lowest of K1,270,000 (30 November). In December, the pure yellow metal priced moved in the range of 1,280,000 (1 December) and 1,332,000 (28 December). With global gold prices on the uptick, the domestic price hit fresh highs in 2019, reaching K1,000,000 per tical between 17 January and 21 February, crossing K1,100,000 (22 June to 5 August), climbing to over 1,200,000 (7 August-4 September), and then reaching a record high of K1,300,000 on 5 September 2019.

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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CBM sells $23 million in August

The Central Bank of Myanmar (CBM) sold US$23 million at its FX auction rate in August so far. This month, the CBM reportedly sold $3 million on 2 August, $2 million on 3 August, $3 million on 4 August, $2.5 million each on 9
and 12 August and $10 million on 23 August in the auction market. Kyat is weakening against the US dollar at K1,660 in the local forex market. The CBM’s move is aimed at governing the market volatility and strengthening the local currency value, the CBM stated.

The Central Bank of Myanmar (CBM) sold US$93.8 million at its FX auction rate in the past six months (February-July), according to the auction results released by the CBM. The bullish hard currency gained in the local forex market, reaching the peak of K1,730 on 12 May from K1,330 in January-end. In a bid to strengthen the local currency, the CBM reportedly sold about 6.8 million dollars on 3 February 2021, $12 million in April, $24 million in May, $12 million in June and $39 million in July in the auction market.

The CBM trades the foreign currency with the authorized private banks under the rules and regulations of the FX auction market. The local forex market’s data showed that the dollar exchange rate touched the maximum of K1,345 and the minimum of K1,327 in January 2021. The rate moved in the range of K1,335-1,465 in February. It reached the lowest of K1,420 and the highest of K1,550 in March. The rate fluctuated between K1,550 and K1,610 in April. The rate fluctuated between K1,585 and K1,730 in May and it moved to the maximum of K1,595-1,620 in June. The rate stood at K1,625-1,645 last month.

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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Republic of the Union of Myanmar

Ministry of Health
Order No 332/2021

Fullmoon of Wagaung 1383 ME
22 August 2021

The Ministry of Health hereby announced the order by exercising the authority stipulated in Sub-Section (b) of
Section 21 of the Prevention and Control of Communicable Diseases Law.

  1. The Ministry of Health has taken preventive measures against Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) in real-time. Therefore, people from some townships of Nay Pyi Taw, Union Territory Area and Taninthayi Region need to stay at home due to the number of confirmed patients on the rise in these townships.
  2. Hence, the people residing in the following townships in Nay Pyi Taw, Union Territory Area and Taninthayi Region are involved in the Stay-at-Home programme.
    (a) Nay Pyi Taw, Union Territory Area
    (1) Tatkon Township
    (b) Taninthayi Region
    (1) Dawei Township
    (2) Myeik Township
  3. The people inclusive of the Stay-at-Home programme of the township need to abide by the following disciplines:- (a) Reside at their homes only
    (1) except for service personnel serving at government department;
    (2) except for those serving at private firms such as banks and monetary services, filling stations, foodstuffs and livestock and fishery, cold storage, medicine and medical equipment production and distribution, purified water production and sales, factories of manufacturing daily personal goods and related industries;
    (3) those in the airline industry who provide services in relief flights/cargo flights and charter flights, ground services, aircraft refuelling, import/export of goods by air, international freight forwarder companies, companies and agencies that provide customs services, aircraft food production and export and aircraft maintenance;
    (4) except for staff from private ports, shipping agencies offices, international freight forwarder companies, customer service companies and agencies, container truck services, port export and import cargo trucks and watercraft, inland container depot and dry ports;
    (5) except for staff from communication service providers such as post services, line phones and mobile phone communication services, internet services (exclusive of sales of telephone and data at shops), tower and fibre maintenance services;
    (b) relevant region and state governments to issue necessary orders and directives and supervision for prevention of COVID-19 infection at CMP factories and workshops;
    (c) organizations and companies to perform their works from homes;
    (d) one person from each house to go out shopping;
    (e) only two persons per house to go to hospitals and clinics;
    (f) wear masks if they go outside the houses;
    (g) allow ferries and registered vehicles only to transport returnees from workplaces to pass the wards;
    (h) allow one person only in addition to the driver in a vehicle for shopping in the ward and two persons except for the driver to go to hospitals or clinics;
    (i) abide by the standard operating procedures (SOP) for trucks to ensure smooth flow of commodities in the township;
  4. People need to inform relevant ward/village administration bodies about seeking approvals to go outside the houses if they have reasons to raise the limited number of participants in the measures and other emergency issues mentioned in subparagraphs (d), (e) and (h) of Paragraph 3. The relevant administrative bodies need not allow ingoing and outgoing persons, except for officials and those returnees from duty.
  5. Action will be taken against those who fail to abide by the order under the existing laws.
  6. The order came into force at 4 am on 23-8-2021.

Dr Thet Khaing Win
Union Minister

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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Myanmar aquaculture exports plummet down to $640 million this FY

The value of Myanmar’s aquaculture exports in the past ten months (Oct-July) dropped dramatically to US$640 million on account of the border trade restrictions by the neighbouring countries China and Thailand amid the COVID-19 crisis. Myanmar exported $750 million worth marine products to the external market in the corresponding period of last FY, the Ministry of Commerce’s data showed. Myanmar’s fishery exports declined over the past months, owing to the pandemic-induced restrictions in the border trade. The export will undoubtedly grow if the trade route is open, said an exporter from Muse border. The Myanmar Fisheries Federation (MFF) targets to earn over US$1 billion from aquaculture exports in the current financial year started from 1 October 2020, MFF stated.

Myanmar sends fish and marine products to external market through air, sea and land border. Myanmar exported 670,000 tonnes of fishery products to 45 countries in the past FY 2019-2020 ended 30 September, generating an estimated income of $850 million despite the difficulties triggered by the COVID-19 crisis. The figure reflected an increase of over $120 million registered in the FY 2018-2019, MRF’s dataindicated. The federation is endeavouring to fulfill the requirements of market. Resources are limited for wild caught fish exports as it looks forward to a long-term interests. The sector also helps develop the rural community and create jobs for local residents. Additionally, the government coordination and guidance play a vital role in the development of sector.

This sector also helped inject the economy of the country amid the COVID-19 impacts. Myanmar exports fisheries products, such as fish, prawns, and crabs, to over 40 countries, including China, Saudi Arabia, the US, Japan, Singapore, Thailand, and countries in the European Union. The MFF is making concerted efforts to increase the marine export earnings by developing fish farms which meet international standards and adopting advanced fishing techniques. To ensure food safety, the foreign market requires suppliers to obtain Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) and Good Aquaculture Practices (GAqP) certificates. To meet international market standards, fishery products must be sourced only from hatcheries that are compliant with GAqP. The MFF is working with fish farmers, processors, and the Fisheries Department under the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, and Irrigation to develop the GAqP system.

Processors can screen fishery products for food safety at ISO-accredited laboratories under the Fisheries Department. There are 480,000 acres of fish and prawn breeding farms across the country and more than 130 cold-storage facilities in Myanmar. And 28 of them have been given green light to export to EU countries. Myanmar exported 340,000 tonnes of marine products worth $530 million in the 2013-2014 FY, 330,000 tonnes worth $480 million in the 2014-2015 FY, 360,000 tonnes worth $500 million in the 2015- 2016 FY, 430,000 tonnes worth $600 million in the 2016-2017 FY, 560,000 tonnes worth $700 million in the 2017-2018 FY, and over 580,000 tonnes in the 2018-2019 FY, the Ministry of Commerce’s data showed.

The federation has asked the government to tackle problems faced in the export of farm-raised fish and prawns through G2G pacts and ensure smooth freight movement between countries to bolster exports, according to the MFF. Myanmar’s economy is more dependent on agricultural sector to a large extent. Also, the fisheries sector contributes a lot to the national gross domestic product (GDP). More than 3.5 million people are relying on the sector. Its fishery production including shrimps and saltwater and freshwater fish are far better than the regional countries. If the country can boost processing technology, it will contribute to the country’s economy and earn more income for those stakeholders in the supply chain, Yangon Region Fisheries Department stated.

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar