Thailand, Myanmar move forward on Dawei economic zone development


BANGKOK, Nov 22 – Thailand and Myanmar have agreed to jointly develop the Dawei deep seaport mega projects and find new investors to replace Italian-Thai Development Company (ITD) which has suspended its operations.

Thai and Myanmar officials met in at a Bangkok hotel yesterday for the fourth Joint Coordinating Committee (JCC) during which a memorandum of understanding was signed by the Dawei Special Economic Zone Authority (DSEZ) and Dawei SCZ Development Co.

Dawei SCZ Development is a Thai-Myanmar joint venture with an initial registered capital at Bt12 million.

Italian-Thai Development has decided to cease operations due to financial difficulties after having invested about Bt6 billion (more than US$185 million). Its investment privileges will be transferred to the Dawei SCZ Development.

Deputy Prime Minister/Commerce Minister Niwatthamrong Boonsongpaisan, who represented the Thai delegation in the joint coordinating meeting, said auctions for the Dawei development project will include two stages, starting with bids for infrastructure development.

The second stage will involve concessionaires for mega projects with a combined investment of Bt300-400 billion, covering an area of 200 square kilometres or about 200,000 rai.

Premchai Kanasutra, Ital-Thai president, said the company is willing to enter a joint venture with Rojana Industrial Park in the second phase of development which will need an initial investment of no less than Bt100 billion.

U Sett Aung, deputy governor of the Myanmar central bank, said Japanese investors were invited to invest in the mega project.

Japan may announce its plan to join other investors in Dawei at the 40th ASEAN-Japan Friendship and Cooperation summit, to be held in Japan next month, he said.