Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Thailand food companies plan to enter Burmese market

Wednesday, 01 August 2012 16:49 Nay Lin Aung

Rangoon (Mizzima) – Officials from 10 of Thailand’s ready-made food businesses held a product exhibition at the Asia Plaza Hotel in Rangoon this week in preparation to enter the Burmese food market.

Thai Khaotan Rice Crackers will be distributed in Burma. Photo: Khaotan company

Seventeen Thai businesspersons from the 10 food companies introduced their brands including potato chip and snacks made from rice and peanuts.

Chanyut Inphrom, the owner of Khaotan rice cracker company, told Mizzima, “We came here to observer in order to start selling our food in Burma. Now, as a result of political and economic reforms, we have the chance to introduce our products here.”

He said his company planned to sell their products via local agents.

Zaw Min, who sells foreign cosmetics products, said that Burma’s small-scale food businesses should improve their products and services in line with international standards because foreign companies are preparing to sell their food product in Burma.

“Now, Thailand’s small-scale businesses are preparing to enter into Burma. Other regional countries are likely to enter into Burma soon.  Small-scale businesses in our country need to prepare to improve technical know-how, services and qualities in order not to fall behind [foreign competitors]," he said.

Aung Thein, an executive with the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry, in a workshop on economic development in Naypyitaw on July 27, noted that Burma will enter the Asean Free Trade Area in 2015.

“The businesses in Burma need to be able to compete with not only domestic businesses but also international businesses. [The domestic businesses] need to know which international companies can manufacture the best quality products and which international company can sell a particular product at the lowest price,” said Aung Thein. “When Asean enters into Free Trade agreement, the same products from the remaining nine Asean countries will enter into our country’s market without tariffs, so the qualities and prices of our products need to be able to compete with theirs.”

According to the Ministry of Commerce website, in 2011-2012 Thailand’s value of exports to Burma was US$ 3.82383 billion and its value of imports from Burma was US$ 691.15 million; in 2010-2011, Thailand’s value of exports to Burma was US$ 2.90518 billion and its value of imports from Burma was US$ 709.09 million.

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