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Myanmar makes progress in preparation for launching first stock exchange

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YANGON, Jan. 12 (Xinhua) -- Myanmar has been making progress in preparation for launching the country's first ever stock exchange market in Yangon scheduled for October this year in joint venture with two Japanese firms.

Under an agreement signed in Nay Pyi Taw, the Yangon Stock Exchange Joint Venture Co. Ltd will be set up in partnership among Myanmar Economic Bank (MEB) sharing 51 percent, Japan's Daiwa Institute of Research Ltd 30.25 percent and Japan Exchange Group 18.75 percent.

A small number of private companies with impressive business performances have applied for listing on the stock exchange which initially calls for highlighting quality.

Following the establishment of the Securities and Exchange Commission, Myanmar is inviting applications for service providers for its first ever prospective Yangon Stock Exchange, setting Feb. 27 a deadline for submission of applications.

The commission will grant four kinds of services licenses -- underwriters, dealers, brokers and consultants, prescribing different levels of capital requirement for each, said the commission chairman U Maung Maung Thein, who is also Deputy Finance Minister.

A license for underwriting requires 15 billion Kyats ( 15 million U.S. dollars), for dealing 10 billion Kyats, for brokerage 7 billion Kyats and for consultancy business 30 million Kyats, he also said, adding that a license for underwriting, which tops the requirement, will be also granted to operate in other three business areas.

The winners for the service licenses are expected to be announced in mid-April.

Myanmar enacted the Securities and Exchange Law in July 2013 to pave the way for the launch of the country's first stock exchange in more than five decades.

In 2012, a memorandum of understanding on Japan's technical aid for the development of the capital market was signed between the Central Bank of Myanmar and the Daiwa Research Institute and Tokyo Stock Exchange.

Prior to it, Myanmar allowed the establishment of public companies with at least seven initial holders in a bid to shape the capital market.

Applicants were advised to advertise in dailies and other media their start-up capital, business priorities, share portfolio, membership in the first board of directors and qualifications, share transfer and dealing, profit sharing, audit and electing board of directors.

Myanmar has been making efforts to introduce capital market for economic growth of the country, joining the Financial Services Agency (FSA) and the Japan International Agency (JICA).

Besides the planned launching of Yangon Stock Exchange in October for the emergence of public investment market, the Central Bank of Myanmar will also sell government bonds through tender offer starting this month.

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