The Ministry of Commerce is planning to grant special privileges to exporters, the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (UMFCCI) announced on 8 October.
Exporters who earn foreign currency for Myanmar will be given special benefits, the UMFCCI said without being more specific.
The decision will affect the main agricultural export goods such as beans, sesame, corn, rice, rubber, and vegetables, in addition to fisheries products and CMP garments.
According to the Ministry of Commerce, Myanmar ran a trade deficit of over $835m from 1 April to 22 September 2023.
Monetary policy remains a significant challenge for exporters.
In August 2022, the Central Bank of Myanmar announced that exporters had to convert 65% of export earnings into kyat at the CBM’s reference rate.
In July 2023, the conversion rule was eased to 50% of earnings. However, exporters say they are still struggling with the policy.
Myanmar’s foreign trade grew to $33.97bn during FY2022/23, comprising $16.62bn in exports and $17.35bn in imports.
During FY2023/24, foreign trade is expected to reach $32.5bn, comprising exports of $16.5bn and imports of $16bn.
Trade department issues notification regarding export earnings
The Department of Trade issued a notification on 7 October reminding exporters to deposit their export earnings within the specified period.
Those who fail to do this will have their registration suspended for two weeks and face action under the Foreign Exchange Management Law.
Earnings must be deposited within 45 days for goods being exported to countries in Asia. For exports outside of Asia, exporters have up to 90 days.
Suspended export/import registrations will only be restored when the CBM has informed the Trade Department that the company in question has deposited the required amount.
Companies that repeatedly fail to deposit their earnings will face legal action under Section 42-a of the Foreign Exchange Management Law.