INSIGHTS THIS MONTH (March, 2017)

6
Apr
2017

VDB LOI BRIEFING IN TOKYO
Client Briefing – 7 March 2017, Yangon

Japanese Seek Entry into Myanmar Energy Sector, But How?

On 15 March, VDB Loi’s Edwin Vanderbruggen and Satoshi Mitsukuri presented a uniquely practical update on Myanmar energy and infrastructure projects in Tokyo. The briefing was sponsored by the Japan Institute for Overseas Investment (“JOI”) and supported by the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (“JBIC”), where the briefing took place. Nearly 200 executives from a wide range of Japanese international businesses attended the briefing. Click here to know more…
 
 
IN THIS ISSUE
From our Corporate Team

First Ever Transfer of Shares from A Myanmar Company to a Foreigner

Myanmar’s Directorate of Investment and Company Administration (“DICA”) has for the first time implemented a transfer of shares in a company wholly owned by Myanmar citizens and registered as a Myanmar company to a foreigner. On March 7 2017, VDB Loi organized an exclusive client briefing session in Yangon on this development. Read more…

From our Disputes Team

How Do Myanmar Tribunals Decide Disputes between Employees and Employers?

As foreign enterprises continue flock to Myanmar, lured by a robust investment landscape and the recent easing of US sanctions, they must also contend with a new reality – more labor protection and a special labor disputes arbitration system. VDB Loi organized a client briefing session in Yangon on February 28 2017 on the latest developments and highlights in Myanmar’s labor dispute cases. Read more…

From our Energy Team

Five Fearless Ways to Shake up the Myanmar Electricity Market

With another 65 million households to connect, long-term prospects for Myanmar’s electricity market is fantastic. Now, the time has come for bold reform. Here are five bold ideas on how the Government can speed up reform, investment and electrification in Myanmar. Read more…

From our Tax Team

Quick Guide on Myanmar Taxes in New Publication

VDB Loi’s Tax Team published the Myanmar Tax Booklet 2017, your go-to-guide on Myanmar’s tax landscape. The booklet includes highlights of the 2017 Union Tax Law, reduction in Withholding Tax rates and updated CT and Special Goods Tax rates among other things. Read more…

 
NEW MYANMAR LAWS AND REGULATIONS THIS MONTH
  • National Planning Law (Draft)
    The National Planning Law – Draft sets out the Union Government’s 20-year and 5-year National Development Plan. The law also includes plans with respect to development of human resource, industrial zones, Special Economic Zones, agriculture, fishery, forestry, energy, mining, electricity, construction, transportation, telecommunications as well as trade.
     
  • Procedures Regarding the Property Tax on Land and Buildings within the Boundary of NCDC
    These procedures are with respect to Property Tax, which not only includes tax imposed on land or building, but also the General Tax, which is imposed to cover cost related to construction and maintenance of public roads, bridges, sewers, markets, parks and playgrounds within the boundary of the Nay Pyi Taw City Development Committee. Other items include Water Tax and Water Disposal Tax.
     
  • Myanmar Architecture Council Rules
    Myanmar Architecture Council Rules intend to maintain and improve the honor, ethics and quality of Myanmar citizen architects and technicians, provide systematic leadership for researches and offer trainings in cooperation with international organizations. The application and issuance of architect registration certificate and technician registration certificate are also included as part of the rules.
     
 
TENDER ANNOUNCEMENTS
  • Request for Proposal for Joint Venture in Onshore Seismic Acquisition Services with Myanmar Oil and Gas Enterprise
    Read more…
     
  • Ministry of Industry Expression of Interest (EOI) Invitation Regarding Number 14 Heavy Industry
    Read more…
     
  • Ministry of Industry EOI Invitation Regarding Number 16 Heavy Industry
    Read more…
     
  • Ministry of Transport and Communications EOI for the Provision of Consulting Services to Verfiy the Network Performance of the Mobile Operators Network
    Read more…
     
  • Invitation for Bids for the National Electrification Project
    Read more…
     
 
WHAT OTHERS SAY ABOUT US
International publisher Chambers and Partners placed VDB Loi in a leading position among law firms in Myanmar, highlighting our “broad-based offering, consistently praised for its practicality”. Here are some of the things our clients told the researchers:
  • “We have been impressed with VDB | Loi for their service-mindedness, eye for detail, and notably their sense of the Myanmar realities.”

     
  • “VDB really know the minutiae, but also the way that things really work in practice. We feel that they can predict the authority’s reactions well. They are commercial and can offer suggestions and options, and can admit when it is unclear how things will turn out. They are my first port of call.”

     
  • “Edwin Vanderbruggen is very good at dealing with very difficult issues; he can push things through, make things work.”
 
SEE OUR PROGRESS IN 2016
We wish you a prosperous and productive 2017! Check out the impressive progress our practice made last year:

  • An astounding 25% to 33% of the approved (MIC) investments in Myanmar obtained MIC permits through VDB Loi.
     
  • We were involved in 5 out of 7 power projects signed in 2016!
     
  • We created exclusively dedicated practice teams as well as launched new ones, such as Disputes and Energy.
     
  • We obtained licenses, permits and helped set up financial institutions, telecom operators, security firms, and airlines.
     
  • We built on our expertise acting for the Government in the petroleum products sector, our Energy Team was the obvious choice for additional engagements in fuel and fuel infrastructure in 2016.
     
  • We continue to have the confidence of the Government who engages us in a number of transactions in energy, transport, and telecom.

You can download the full report here

 
 
RECENT VDB LOI WORK
  • Assistance with obtaining MIC approval and legal advice for a 170MW power plant: : VDB Loi’s Energy and Licensing Teams are working with a Southeast Asian power company in connection with a solar power plant project in Myanmar. Our Energy Team based in Yangon is advising the power company on a wide-range of legal and regulatory matters, while our Licensing Team has assisted the company obtain the Myanmar Investment Commission (MIC) permit.
     
  • Advising in connection with licensing on satellite communications arrangement: VDB Loi’s Telecoms Team is advising and assisting a network communications service provider on Myanmar regulatory issues with respect to telecommunications, corporate law and contract law issues in Myanmar. In addition, our team will advise the client on legality, practical feasibility and other administrative aspects of the business involved.
     
  • Assisting a microfinance institution obtain loan from a foreign lender: VDB Loi’s Banking and Finance Team is assisting a Myanmar-based microfinance institution obtain loan from a foreign lender. VDB Loi’s services include providing legal opinion with respect to this transaction, review of loan agreement, and assisting the client on all execution requirements.
     
  • Land due-diligence for European textile Company in Myanmar: VDB Loi’s Infrastructure, Real Estate and Construction (IREC) Team is providing land due-diligence service for a European textile company on their target land in Myanmar. Our due-diligence will involve review of all documents from a Myanmar law perspective, verifying matters related to ownership, compliance and land history as well as conducting site visits to ascertain other legal matters pertaining to land ownership.
     
  • Assistance with MIC permit and compliance matters for an energy major: VDB Loi’s Energy Team is assisting a leading energy firm in connection with its application for an investment permit from the Myanmar Investment Commission (MIC) and various ongoing corporate matters in Myanmar. VDB Loi is assist the client on taxation, immigration services for foreign employees in Myanmar, payroll services, registration with the Internal Revenue Department (IRD) and labor law compliance among other things.
     
  • Financing of a microfinance institution: VDB Loi’s Banking and Finance Team is assisting a Southeast Asia bank in connection with lending to a microfinance institution in Myanmar. Our team will assist the bank with drafting of a facility agreement, security documents and provide legal opinions with respect to the loan.
     
  • Converting existing building into units under the Condominium Act: VDB Loi’s Infrastructure, Real Estate and Construction (“IREC”) Team is engaged to prepare a trailblazing application for converting an existing and completed building into a qualifying construction under the Condominium Act. We prepare the documentation and lead negotiations with the regulator.
 
OUR RECENT EVENTS
  • Government Guarantees for PPP Projects in Myanmar
    31 March, 2017, Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar
    VDB-Loi is hosting a workshop presided over by H.E. U Kyaw Win the Union Minister of Planing and Finance, dedicated to exploring new policies in connection with issuing Government guarantees for Public Private Partnership projects in Myanmar.

  • Myanmar Real Estate Summit 2017
    4 April, 2017, Yangon, Myanmar
    In this highly practical conference, VDB Loi’s Real Estate Team will offer insights on a number of topics such as structuring real estate, hospitality projects, land concessions and tax, recent developments in Myanmar’s real estate sector, process of evaluating urban projects etc.
 
HOW IS OUR APPROACH DIFFERENT?
These 3 core values are why our clients choose us. Read about it here:

 
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