Myanmar companies see drop in demand from international customers due to COVID-19 - Report

21 July 2020
Myanmar companies see drop in demand from international customers due to COVID-19 - Report
Motorists travel along a road in Yangon. Photo: AFP

Nearly 76% of export businesses in Myanmar have been moderately to strongly affected by the coronavirus pandemic and more than 50% of Myanmar’s companies faced reduced demand from global buyers, a new report on the impact of COVID-19 on Myanmar’s export sectors has revealed.

The impact assessment, carried out by Myanmar’s trade promotion organization MyanTrade with technical assistance by the International Trade Center (ITC), presents an overview of the current challenges faced by exporters, an analysis of the pandemic’s impact on each of priority export sectors up to June 2020, and industry-specific recommendations for recovery.

‘This pragmatic report, emerging from Myanmar’s National Export Strategy design process, highlights that recovery will take some time and that key reforms will need to be engaged; it also shows that the pandemic is creating new opportunities for Myanmar economy to become stronger and more resilient in a fast-changing and evolving world,’ Daw Naw Mutakapaw, Director General of MyanTrade, said.

The analysis presented in the new report builds on the findings of a COVID-19 impact survey, analytics of global value chain disruptions, and a series of public-private consultations with leading export industries. In addition to industry-specific recommendations for recovery, the report outlines key global trade trends that are accelerating due to the pandemic, and that will have a long-term impact on Myanmar’s exporters.

The Ministry of Commerce, in close coordination with the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chamber of Commerce and Industry, is implementing Myanmar’s new National Export Strategy 2020−2025. The strategy seeks to sustain a cycle of export growth for Myanmar by diversifying exports into higher value-added manufacturing, market-oriented agriculture and services.