Following a removal of economic sanctions by President Barack Obama of the United States, Myanmar’s Suu Kyi is welcoming foreign investors back to its country. Speaking at a joint conference with other government leaders in the capital, Naypyitaw, Myanmar’s State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi assured investors that the country will now operate a clearer business and legal framework, to ensure foreign businesses are treated equal with local ones. The appeal came as foreign investments took a dive this year, following democratic elections for the first time in decades, and an economic plan many criticised as opaque. “Our government noticed particular criticism from the public that an economic growth of the country is slowing,” said Suu Kyi. “I would like to stress that no one but our government is more eager to achieve progress, because economic development would help us establish democratic institutions here.”
Between April and July, foreign investments totalled $380 million, a far cry from the $2.6 billion it amassed the same period last year. The country’s leader is touring different countries to promote the new trade agenda, with visits to China, the United States, India and Thailand already concluded. Japan is the next destination, with a visit scheduled for November this year. The country lacks major infrastructure in many industries, the aftermath of a half-century of military dictatorship. The Finance and Development Minister, Kyaw Win, said the country needs to develop its local industry, boost exports and reduce imports. It also wants to tackle illegal trade, which he said is much larger than legal trade.