In Shwe Taung in the Bano region of Myanmar the Myanmarese government asked a Japanese company to do a feasibility study to allocate 127 acres of land for a specialized textile and garment zone. This development welcomes both local and foreign investment to stimulate job generation and contribute to the country’s economic growth.
Currently there are over 400 existing apparel manufacturing units in Myanmar, employing over 300,000 people. Japan is the largest importer of apparel from Myanmar, accounting for 33 per cent of all clothing exports. Myanmar also exports to South Korea, Germany, China and the American markets.
The Myanmar Investment Commission (MIC) has suggested that apparel stitching factories should be opened in Ponnakyun, Sittwe in a bid to create job opportunities for local people and to halt migration to other regions. The MIC has recommended several fiscal incentives for companies interested in starting projects in Sittwe, to encourage investment in a less developed region. The proposed incentives include an income tax exemption for seven years and exemption on customs duties and local taxes, on import of raw materials and partially manufactured goods. The relaxation of duties and taxes would be for those companies, who import raw materials to export finished goods.
The state-owned investment body has also recommended that an apparel manufacturing facility be built by a public company, in cooperation with an existing garment factory. Myanmar remains an emerging market with a largely underdeveloped infrastructure with promising possibilities.