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IFC Supports the Establishment of Myanmar Business Forum to Improve Investment Climate

Yangon, Myanmar, September 8, 2014 —IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is supporting the establishment of the Myanmar Business Forum that will serve as a platform between the public and private sectors to discuss ways to improve the country’s business environment, thus attracting more investments, creating more jobs, and spurring economic growth.
On September 5 in Nay Pyi Taw, IFC and the Trade and Business Promotion Task Force, chaired by Minister of Commerce U Win Myint, held a workshop for key officials involved in private sector development to share knowledge and build capacity of the forum. The task force was created in early August as a focal point and secretariat for the government to coordinate the process of setting up the forum and lead the government’s reform efforts.
“Public-private exchanges will help accelerate the ongoing economic reforms and lead to regulatory changes that are most needed for doing business,” said Pwint San, Deputy Minister of Commerce and Secretary of Trade and Business Promotion Task Force. “We welcome IFC’s initiative to support the establishment of the Myanmar Business Forum and are committed to working with the private sector to make this an effective channel of exchange.”
The Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry has established a secretariat to coordinate the private sector and make it an effective partner in the dialogue with the government. Seven sectoral private sector working groups have been formed and will meet regularly to prioritize issues they will raise with their government counterparts coordinated through the new task force. Regular plenary Myanmar Business Forum meetings will be held to publicly debate issues with the highest levels of government.
“Our experience in supporting public-private sector dialogues across the world shows companies can operate at their best and contribute their most to economic development once they can participate in shaping business-friendly laws and regulations,” said Vikram Kumar, IFC Resident Representative for Myanmar. “Exchanges of ideas between the public and private sectors can lead to important reforms to increase investment and job creation.”
In supporting the establishment of the Myanmar Business Forum, IFC has drawn on its extensive experience in public-private dialogues in Southeast Asian countries, such as Vietnam, which undertook similar reform efforts as Myanmar. This formal dialogue platform between the government and the business community was announced by Myanmar President U Thein Sein in February 2014.
About IFC
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused exclusively on the private sector. Working with private enterprises in about 100 countries, we use our capital, expertise, and influence to help eliminate extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity. In FY14, we provided more than $22 billion in financing to improve lives in developing countries and tackle the most urgent challenges of development. For more information, visit www.ifc.org .
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