Vol. VI No. 33 - Tuesday
October 9, - October 15, 2007

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by Saichon Paewsoongnern

HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]:

Thailand – biggest investor in Myanmar

Thailand – biggest investor in Myanmar

The continuing violence in Myanmar caused by the military government’s crackdown on street protests will have an impact on businesses owned by many groups of Thai investors in the country, according to the Kasikorn Research Centre.
The leading think tank reported that should the unrest drag on, and escalate, it would affect Thai businesses investing in tourism in Myanmar since foreign tourists would reduce their travel into the country.
At the same time, Thai businesses investing in production for export in Myanmar might be affected by additional international sanctions.
At present, Thai businesses have invested in various areas including production, hotels and tourism, fishery, mining, transportation, oil and natural gas drilling, construction, property, and agriculture.
The KRC forecast indicated that should the violence persist, Myanmar would face more economic sanctions from the international community, particularly the United States, the European Union and Japan.
It said investment made by Thai investors in hotel and tourism businesses in Myanmar totaled US$228.6 million. Investment projects by Thai businesses made in the production industry in Myanmar are worth $614.6 million, the fisheries industry $171 million and agriculture the smallest at $2.7 million.
Power generating projects invested by Thailand in Myanmar worth $6.03 billion baht involve the construction of hydro-power dams along the Salween River, which is expected to take six years to complete.
The project value, combined with that of other investment projects, brought up the total investment value Thailand has in Myanmar to $7.38 billion baht.
Thailand is the biggest investor in Myanmar with Singapore, Malaysia, and Indonesia coming second, third and fourth respectively.
Regarding the border trade with Myanmar, KRC believes trade activities along the border of the two countries would be sluggish only in the short run unless the violence escalated to such an extent that the border crossing would be closed. TNA

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