The current construction boom in Myanmar is creating new demand for construction materials, which will likely be a great opportunity for Thai businesses, thanks to the better quality of some of our materials and equipment such as form steel, cranes and other construction machinery. Given that there is an inadequate locally manufactured supply of cement and metal products there, Thai products – with quality trusted by Myanmar businesses – are therefore likely choices. Massive construction projects will need to import much materiel and machinery. Major projects include the THB240 billion Tasang Dam (Thai-China collaboration), a THB3 billion oil and natural gas drilling plant (Thai investment) and a THB1 billion water processing plant.
Aside from government investment plans, there are a number of private sector projects to serve new incoming investors and tourists. Such projects include real estate and hotels. Due to improving sentiment toward investment, and a calmer political situation along with governmental attempts to promote trade and investment, plus the country's unexploited natural resources, KResearch expects that construction in Myanmar should develop quickly and their 2013 construction industry GDP (current prices) may reach MMK2.40-2.48 trillion, increasing 12.4-16.4 percent YoY, accounting for about 5 percent of their overall GDP (their 2012 construction GDP grew 16 percent YoY to MMK2.13 billion). However, this forecast is based on an assumption that no untoward domestic developments impede progress during the year.
The construction material market in Myanmar is thus perceived as a rising opportunity for Thai firms. It should grow with expanding construction there in the future. In light of this, KResearch projects that the total value of our construction material exports to Myanmar will be around USD350-364 million in 2013 (THB10.50-10.92 billion), rising 14.5-19 percent YoY. The figures reflect a steady uptrend from 2012, during which a staggering growth was recorded at 32 percent – a result of construction acceleration in many projects. However, expansion in 2013 may be moderate. Construction materials will be a highly competitive market there involving local and foreign investors. Before advancing into this market, it will be essential to monitor some basics, e.g., rules and regulations pertaining to investment – since regulatory changes will likely be frequent – as well as financial transaction channels and a need to network into contacts with local businesses, which will be important toward investment in a modernizing Myanmar.
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