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Private banks offer hire purchase programmes, auto loans, home loans for seafarers, beneficiaries

Some private banks are offering auto loans to own a car and home loan programmes under hire purchase agreements with low deposits. On 23 December, AYA Bank revealed how the bank buys foreign income of the seafarers with a high exchange rate and introduced the AYA card promotion programme for its debit card, credit card and prepaid card holders, auto loan and home loan programmes, AYA Sompo insurance services and benefits for the beneficiaries of the seafarers, at an event held at headquarters of Myanmar Seafarers Federation.

Additionally, Yoma Bank will also offer the best rate for the seafarer in foreign inward remittance. Opening Flexi Everyday Account of the Yoma Bank, service fee exemption for foreign income remittance and hire purchase system and home loan programme with low deposit and service fee exemption benefits for the seafarers will be provided, as per its statement. The federation will hold an event regarding banking services for seafarers on 30 December 2022.

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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Reading electricity meters on mobile phone available in 5 townships of Yangon

Electricity meters can be read on mobile phones in five townships of the Yangon Region, according to Yangon Electricity Supply Corporation (YESC). During this FY, the government completes digital meter installation processes using an advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) system in five townships of Yangon and people can read the meter on their phones, YESC stated.

The AMI system will reduce power losses significantly and people can know their used meter units over their mobile phones using the Me Bill application in a timely manner. Officials installed AMI system-based 66,189 digital meters in Lanmadaw, Latha, Kyauktada, Pazundaung and Botahtaung townships and it is now 98.66 per cent completed.

Officials will change the remaining 900 meter boxes. In the past, it allowed only one service wire for each apartment and it caused complex cables on lamp posts. Now, power poles look neat and tidy for using only one larger service wire. 

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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Passport Online Booking System suspended on 5 December

The Myanmar Passport Office announced the suspension of applications for the passport through an online booking system on 4 December and advised against purchasing QR Codes through brokers at expensive prices.

The Myanmar Passport Office introduced the online booking system on 21 March 2022 and, according to the new system, the applicants must make an online appointment on www.passport.gov.mm by entering details such as the applicant’s name, father’s name, date of birth and gender and, only after they have received the QR code, they can come to the office in person.

Those who have received the appointment will have to bring the printout of the passport online appointment letter or the screenshot of the QR code. Now, some changes are being made to the online booking system to enable the applicants to make an appointment round the clock. Therefore, the current system was suspended on 5 December. However, those who have already had an appointment through the old system can come to the office on the appointed day. The date when the new online booking system can be used will be announced again, it is learnt.

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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17 labour exchange offices opened in Yangon Region for employment access

Union Minister Dr Pwint San of the Ministry of Labour said, at a job fair, that access to employment will be provided through the opening of 17 labour exchange offices in Yangon Region. To ensure accessibility to employment for those of working age, conduct skill training and for workers to enjoy their rights according to the Labour Law, district and township labour exchange offices are opened in 15 regions and states including the Nay Pyi Taw Union Territory.

The offices will select the workers with suitable qualifications and skills to meet the needs of employers, the Union minister added. A total of 5,658 factories were shut down due to COVID-19 infections in Myanmar, making more than 140,000 people jobless.

The government is taking necessary measures to create job opportunities for the unemployed. For that matter, investments from both domestic and foreign countries are being invited. More than US$1,241 million of foreign investment entered Myanmar during the six months duration from April to the end of September (FY2022-2023), creating job opportunities for local workers.

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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Plan underway to reduce YPS card fare by 20 kyats

The Yangon Region Public Transport Committee-YRTC is working on a payment service aimed at facilitating the payment of public transport lines in Yangon Region, and Yangon Payment System (YPS) card shops are opened more so that passengers can make purchases easily. For those wishing to use the YPS card can buy the cards at over 60 shops including shops in front of Yangon City Hall, in front of Myanmar Plaza Stop, in front of Yuzana Plaza Plaza, Hledan Bus Stop, on Insein Road, Thakin Mya Park, Tamway Roundabout Bus Stop, YUPT of YPS stores, and Bandoola Housing.

“It is quite difficult to top up the card. There is no store where you can top up money wherever you want. It is difficult in many places. Instead of keeping it in stores, I would like to use a system that can be used to top up money through Mobile Pay, which is applied by many people. To find a shop I think it would be more convenient to go with the Mobile Pay system without wasting time,” said Ko Zarni Tun of Dagon Myothit (South) Township told the GNLM. Before, topping up on buses, you can get promotions that you can buy the card, but now you don’t see much,” he added.

YRTC and Asia Starmark Transport Intelligent Co., Ltd (ASTI) are working together to promote the widespread use of the YPS card system. In addition, G&G Convenience Store in partnership with Asia Starmark Transport Intelligent (ASTI) started selling YPS cards at more than 100 branches in Yangon. An official from the YRTC said that in order to encourage YBS bus riders to use the card system more, those who use the card system have been given a discount of 20 kyats per card for a one-way trip compared to the regular fare.

“If you use the card system, 200 kyats will be reduced by 20 kyats. We do this because we want to use the YBS card. Picking up fares according to the stop, in the past, the middle stop was set, and then each side was divided in a half. Now that’s not the case anymore. Since there are 30 stops from beginning to end, I will only pick up fare for 15 stops. It’s not expensive,” he added. It is reported that the number of YPS cards sold is about 150,000, and the number of cards in use is still more than 90,000.

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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7 private banks provide services with special counters for gold transactions

According to the Central Bank of Myanmar’s statement, seven private banks are providing banking services by opening special counters at their designated branches in Yangon and Mandalay regions and Mon State (Mawlamyine) to facilitate gold transactions with the banking payment system.

Kanbawza Bank (KBZ Bank), Co-operative Bank (CB Bank) PCL, Ayeyawady (AYA) Bank, Myanmar Apex Bank (MAB), UAB Bank, Yoma Bank, Ayeyawady Farmers Development Bank (A Bank) are providing banking services with 48 branches.

They are nine branches of KBZ Bank each in Yangon and Mandalay regions and one in Mawlamyine city; three of CB Bank PCL in Yangon, two in Mandalay and one in Mawlamyine; two of AYA Bank in Yangon and one each in Mandalay and Mawlamyine; two of MAB in Yangon, four in Mandalay and one in Mawlamyine; 3 of UAB Bank in Yangon and one each in Mandalay and Mawlamyine; one of Yoma Bank each in Yangon, Mandalay and Mawlamyine; two of A Bank in Yangon and one each in Mandalay and Mawlamyine respectively.

According to CBM’s directive (43/2021) dated 1 November 2021, lump sum payments worth more than K20 million for buying or selling assets have to be processed with the banking system. 

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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539 YBS buses charged for collecting higher bus fares

Action has been taken against a total of 539 YBS buses for charging higher bus fares, according to the Yangon Region Transport Committee (YRTC).

YRTC officials conducted surprise checks and took action against 539 buses of 15 YBS lines such as CNG permit suspension for three months, six months and one year suspension against the buses that collect over K500 bus fares and deploy conductors.

YRTC is carrying out surprise road checks for bus lines not to violate rules and regulations including charging higher fares. Currently, there are about 50,000 YBS passengers who use the YPS card system. Officials are also taking trial measures for billing bus fares depending on bus stops. A total of 3,250 buses of 116 bus lines provide services for 1.3 million passengers daily in Yangon.

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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Highway van service providers tolerating fuel price spike

The price of diesel hit a record high of K3,000 per litre of diesel in the retail market on 24 August 2022, U Aung Zaw, a truck owner, told the Global New Light of Myanmar (GNLM). On 24 August, fuel prices were K2,440 per litre of Octane 92 and K2,525 per litre of Octane 95. There was a price gap of K355 per litre between Octane 92 and Diesel on 7 August. Then, the gap widened to K560 per litre on 24 August. On 22 August, Octane 92 was priced at K2,400 while diesel was worth K2,820 per litre. The figures indicated a rise of K40 for Octane 92 and K180 for diesel against the rates recorded on 24 August.

The prices of diesel tremendously rose from K8,944 per gallon on 7 August to K13,620 per gallon on 24 August. The ferry service for the 200-mile-long Yangon-Mawgyun trip hiked the price up to K6,000 per passenger. Furthermore, the frequency of ferry service dropped this month as only one ferry is running. When two ferries ran last year, the passenger was charged only K2,000, the GNLM quoted Ma Khin Khin Aye, a passenger from Mawgyun, as saying. The freight charge for the Yangon-Pyapon ferry trip increased from K200 to K300 per rice bag, U Ohn, an operator of a double-decker elaborated.

Similarly, 48-mile-long Yangon-Kyaiklat ferries also raised the ferry ticket price from K3,000 to K4,000 last month. Freight costs also doubled from K500 to K1,000 per basket of goods such as eggs, coconut and banana, Daw Aye Than, a seller of eggs, coconut and banana from Kyaiklat told the GNLM. On 23 August 2022, fuel retail prices per litre in Yangon stood at K2,390 for Octane 92, K2,480 for Octane 95 and K2,865 for diesel. On 24 August, Octane 92 price was up by K50, while the diesel price showed a big jump by K135. In spite of the fuel price rises, the prices of highway van services that use Octane remain unchanged. Highway van operators reported that a passenger is charged K10,000 for a Yangon-Mawgyun trip and the price stays the same. Nonetheless, transport costs of diesel-fuelled trucks and ferries are higher due to the price hike of diesel, highway truck operators and ferry commuters said. 

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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Billing system of collecting bus fare of YBS depending on stops on five-day test

Bus fare collection on YBS payment cards will depend on number of bus-stops for five days, and initially, YBS 28 and YBS 29 lines will start working as a pilot test from 13 August, according to the YBS authorities.
The bus fare will be based on the number of stops by specifying the beginning of the gate, the middle of the gate, and the end of the gate. It will be started as a pilot test from 12 to 18 August and if it is convenient, it is planned to be implemented from 19 August.

Any stop will be charged 200 kyats according to the current fare format on the YBS-28 (Dagon University to Sule City Hall) bus line, starting from the starting stop and up to a total of 25 stops. A total of 300 Kyats will be deducted from the card if the journey exceeds 24 stops from the start of the bus stop. Similarly, any stop on the YBS-29 (Shwe Paukan Bridge to Sule City Hall) bus line will be charged 200 kyats from the starting stop up to a total of 33 stops. A trip that exceeds a total of 32 stops from the bus stop will cost 300 kyats. From 12 to 18 August, the Dilet Test system will be tested for five days only, and if it is effective, YPS card users will be able to make accurate fare payments using the YPS card based on the number of stops from 19 August.

It is reported that the previously fixed fare (Flat Fare) will now be changed to a fare (Distance Fare) which will be charged based on the distance traveled. YUPT Company announced in early August that if passengers will pay the fare with the YPS card, they will have to pay the fare with the card once to get on the bus and once to get off. As for the fare collection, it will cost 200 kyats if the trip is half way from the gate. It is planned to charge 200 kyats from any trip to the end of the gate and 400 kyats for the whole trip. If passengers pay for the start-to-end of the trip with the YPS card, the fare will be reduced by 5% discount and will cost only 380 kyats. A total of 116 YBS bus lines are transporting about 121,230 passengers with 3,172 buses in all townships in Yangon.

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

Delivery services of highway bus lines around Aung San stadium suspended

The authorities no longer permit cargo services of highway bus lines at Aung San Stadium in Mingala Taungnyunt Township, according to the bus line and cargo transport counters. “The municipal informed that we cannot load, unload and conduct cargo transport services starting 4 August. I think the operation is suspended due to the instructions of the SAC Chairman to launch heavy maintenance on the stadium. We don’t know the reason exactly. We can sell bus tickets.

Not only the counters but also the stalls may be removed,” said an official of the highway bus line. Counters at the Aung San Stadium are branches of the Aung Mingala Highway Bus Terminal and various bus lines are concentrated there. The ban on loading and unloading processes causes difficulties to the business people, he added. “We have to go to the Aung Mingala terminal if we want to send the packages to other regions. There are not many bus lines at U Chit Maung station and we have to pay K1,000 per package a short trip. Counters at Aung San stadium accepts packages of products for those who don’t want to go far and it is convenient for the people.

Now, the delivery services and business people face hardships,” said Ko Wunna Tun, an online seller. The express buses are not allowed to carry 19 types of materials including drones, binoculars, iron materials, wire, solar and power bank. The officials conduct thorough checks at the inspection camps along the road, according to express bus lines. The transport services of express bus counters around the Aung San Stadium play a key role for entrepreneurs from other sides of Yangon, Thakayta, Dawbon, Ahlon, Pazundaung, Lanmadaw, Latha, Pabedan, Kyimyindine township and online entrepreneurs. The counters around the Aung San Stadium have been opening for many years and such closures can lead to many difficulties. 

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar