Yangon - June 9
The Foreign Bank Selection Team should include representatives from local banks and business organizations, said Myanmar Bank and Monetary Development Committee’s chairman U Aung Thaung.
“We should negotiate and coordinate on the number and the types of businesses we are going to let in. The capital and the capacity of Myanmar banks cannot compete with foreign banks,” said U Aung Thaung in a workshop on the permission of foreign banks and the formation of a strong monetary system.
According to banking experts from private local banks, one of their branches might own about US$100 million as its initial investment. However, even for the smallest foreign bank entering Myanmar, the initial investment of a branch might range between US$500 million and US$800 million.
Currently, foreign banks will be allowed to provide services only to foreign corporations with investments in Myanmar. Experts from private domestic banks propose that their foreign counterparts be restricted from providing such services as trade transactions and giving loans to big local businesses at this point of time.
Secretary of the Foreign Bank Selection Team, Daw May Toe Win stated that the team works with international consulting companies and obtains approval from the President in permitting foreign banks to operate in the country.
As the first step of giving permission to foreign banks, the Central Bank organizes the Foreign Bank Selection Team with the approval of the President. The group is led by current chairman of the Central Bank and includes Dr. Maung Maung Thein, Vice-Minister for Finance and officials from the Central Bank. The group consists of eight members in total.
Local private banks and the parliament committees suggest that the Foreign Bank Selection Team should include banking experts, representatives from Myanmar Bank Association, representatives from Union of Myanmar Federation of Chamber of Commerce and Industry (UMFCCI), and officials from Ministry of National Planning & Economic Development.