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New Myanmar laws for foreign investment and anti-corruption

Street market in Yangon, Myanmar. (Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)As part of the reforms by President Thein Sein to open up Myanmar after decades of economic isolation, the parliament has approved a new foreign investment law.

The new law allows foreigners to own up to 100% of many businesses approved by the Foreign Investment Commission.

With about 60 million people and rich natural resources including oil and gas, Myanmar is set to become an economic star in Southeast Asia.

But growth could be stunted by the nation’s rampant corruption.

Myanmar ranked as the world’s third most country on the Corruption Perceptions Index, topping only Somalia and North Korea.

To ease investors’ fears, the government has been working on a Draft Anti-Corruption Law and ratification of the U.N. Convention against Corruption (UNCAC). The U.N. has reviewed the Draft Anti-Corruption Law and provided comments to ensure compliance with UNCAC.

U.S. President Barack Obama said he will travel to Myanmar in mid November.

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Zhang Min is a researcher for the FCPA Blog members area.

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