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Boeing to provide 737s to Air Mandalay
The world’s largest aerospace company, Boeing, has announced a deal with Burmese firm Air Mandalay to provide an unspecified number of 737 aircraft. Representatives of Boeing and Air Mandalay signed a memorandum of collaboration on 8 November; Burma’s Minister of Transport Nyan Htun Aung and US Ambassador Derek Mitchell witnessed the signing ceremony.
Demurrage fees to increase at Burmese ports
Myanmar Port Authority announced on Wednesday that the demurrage charges for containers, heavy machinery and vehicles at terminals will increase from 15 January 2015 onwards. The increases in the demurrage prices are to improve storage capacity at terminals, it said. Demurrage, in shipping terms, is the charges incurred while a ship lies in port while not loading or offloading cargo.
Singapore now Burma’s top investor (or is it USA?)
Singapore has emerged as the top foreign investor in Burma, leapfrogging ahead of previous frontrunner China. However, Burmese Deputy Minister of Finance Maung Maung Thein says he believes the result comes from American companies registering in Singapore to avoid the remaining US sanctions on Burma. Direct foreign investment in Burma this year will rise by about a quarter to more than US$5 billion, according to Naypyidaw.
Amara Bank introduces new scheme after blacklist scare
Amara United Bank said that beginning on 13 November it will introduce “Super Call Deposit Accounts” which provide customers with interest rates that compound on a daily basis. The rates vary between 4.0 and 8.35 percent depending on the amount of money deposited. The new campaign comes after unusually large amounts of money were withdrawn from the bank following the US Treasury Department’s decision to blacklist Burmese MP Aung Thaung for attempting to undermine recent reforms in Burma and his involvement in attacks on democracy advocates.
Jalux, Mitsubishi to run Mandalay airport
Japanese firms Jalux Inc and Mitsubishi Corp have signed a joint venture to operate Mandalay International Airport, according to Japan Times, citing the transport ministry. The joint venture, named MC-Jalux Airport Services Co, will be owned 45.5 percent each by Japan Airlines affiliate Jalux and Mitsubishi, with the remainder going to an unnamed domestic firm. The contract is for 30 years, starting as soon as early 2015, the report said.
East Asian leaders commit to eliminating malaria
Leaders of the 18 East Asia Summit countries committed last week to an ambitious goal of eliminating malaria from the region within the next 15 years. According to a statement by the Asia-Pacific Leaders Malaria Alliance: “The bold move shows strong leadership on health security and responds head-on to concerns about growing resistance to the drug artemisinin, the mainstay of worldwide treatment for the most dangerous form of the disease.” Resistance was first reported in western Cambodia several years ago and was more recently detected in Laos, Thailand, Vietnam and Burma.
Foreign investors invited to consider SEZ projects
International investors have been invited by the Myanmar Investment Commission to signal their interest in three of Burma’s upcoming special economic Zones: Thilawa, Dawei and Kyaukphyu. At the 11th ASEAN Summit on 12 November, the secretary of the MIC , Aung Naing Oo, extended the offer to the foreign delegations present and stated that the first priority for investors should be labour-intensive industries, followed by value-added and hi-tech sectors.