Success tips when doing business in Myanmar
- Government agencies play an important role in doing business in Myanmar, like all countries. All businesses deal with government agencies on a regular basis. This is where foreigners interested in Myanmar business setup should exercise restraint and be patient as much as possible as government authorities would always have the final say in any matter;
- Your joint venture partner or Myanmar shareholder must not merely be a nominee for the sake of meeting the rules of foreign company incorporation. You should choose a partner that actually brings a lot to the table, including local knowledge necessary for your business to succeed in setting up a business in Myanmar;
- When you’re starting a business in Myanmar it’s important to find out which Myanmar registrations and licenses apply to your firm. This can be a complex area; as local, state, territory and federal governments handle registration and licensing for various aspects of your business;
- When given a business card, show respect by receiving it with both hands and briefly examining it before putting it away;
- Although English is used in most business meetings, it is recommendable to have business cards printed in Burmese on the reverse. This is to show respect and enable better communication with your Myanmar business partners.
Interesting facts about Myanmar
- Myanmar was home to the Pagan Empire from the 10th to 13th centuries. During that time, it was the most powerful kingdom in Southeast Asia, along with the Khmer Empire. The Empire was toppled in 1287 after repeated invasions by the Mongols;
- The country, then known as Burma, was annexed by the British in 1886, following decades of fighting. It was granted independence in 1948, but unlike most former British colonies, it did not become a member of the Commonwealth;
- The official name of the country was changed from Burma to “Union of Myanmar” in 1989, and further modified to “Republic of the Union of Myanmar.” The name change has caused controversy within the country, with many people refusing to adopt the name, which is seen as a symbol of domination over ethnic minorities;
- The majority of Myanmar’s people are ethnic Burmans, and other ethnic groups (including Shans, Karens, and Kachins) add up to some 30 percent of the population. Ethnic minorities are dominant in border and mountainous areas;
- Myanmar has a population of 56 million, making it one of the more populous countries in Southeast Asia. The main religion is Buddhism, which is practiced by 89% of the population;
- Myanmar is the largest country in mainland Southeast Asia, and the 40th-largest in the world. It shares borders with Thailand, China, Bangladesh, India, and Laos;
- Agriculture is an important sector of Myanmar’s economy with rice being the major agricultural product. Textiles, wood products, construction materials, gems, metals, oil, and natural gas are the other major sectors of the economy of Myanmar. The country has rich reserves of precious stones such as sapphires, pearls and jade. Myanmar produces 90% of the world’s rubies;
- Bagan, the capital of the Pagan Empire had more than 10,000 Buddhist temples at the height of the Empire’s power. At present, it is home to 2,229 temples and pagodas, and is one of the major tourist destinations in Myanmar.