BANGKOK, 19 September 2011 -Thai and Myanmar businesspeople joined a seminar in Myanmar to determine investment trend after the ASEAN nations merge in 2015 to form the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC).
According to Mae Hong Son Chamber of Commerce Chairperson Supoj Klinpraneed, the seminar was organized by the Thai Ambassador in Yangon, H.E. Aphirat Wieanrawee, who invited leading Thai entrepreneurs from various industries to exchange business ideas with their Myanmar counterparts.
It has been revealed from the seminar that the Myanmar investors were seeking higher trading partnership with Thailand before the upcoming 2015 AEC. Mr. Supoj said that the neighboring country had good relations with China, India and Singapore.
He added that Myanmar businesspeople had confidence in their Thai counterparts and expressed their wish for the Thai medical sector, famous for its cost effective services; Smithivej or Bamrungrad Hospitals just to name a few, to join a business venture with Myanmar too.
They also proposed easing visa restrictions to allow their citizens to enter Thailand provided that quite a number of their students studying in Thailand and the prospect of turning Thachilek-Maesai border checkpoint into an international trade route which Mr Supoj purported to be linking China, Laos and Vietnam.
In terms of investment, Myanmar investors encouraged Thailand to promote the development of deep water pier in Tavoy and business opportunities at Singkhon checkpoint in Kanchanaburi and to the Thailand’s southern region on Song Island in Ranong which was connected to Tavoy in Myanmar. Meanwhile, the establishment of a central bank had also been proposed to facilitate the currency exchange between the two nations.
Mr. Supoj stated further that Myanmar suggested that the private sector from both countries should meet every three months to discuss trading issues and raise the matters to their respective government accordingly. He said among the issues was the opening and closing periods of the border checkpoint which had not been clear at this point.