Parliament approves foreign investment law


In a further move to create a more business friendly country, the Burmese parliament has approved the Foreign Investment Law. It has still to be signed by the president before coming in to force.

The law allows foreigners to own 100% of a company or set up a joint venture with involvement of at least 35% of foreign capital.

The new legislation also allows for foreign investors to lease land from the state or private individuals for up to 30 years with 15 year extensions.

Where a new company sets up operations in Myanmar all unskilled workers must be Burmese and at least 25% of the skilled workforce should be local people, rising to 50% after 10 years and 75% after 15 years.

Nationalisation of foreign owned businesses is prohibited without compensation at current market prices.

China, Thailand and South Korea are currently the largest foreign investors in the country. The new law should open the country up to many more investment opportunities including opening up the telecommunications market to foreign investment.

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