The Myanmar Investment Commission (MIC) on July 31 approved the US$230.6 million Hlegu Industrial Park, which will be developed by Singapore’s Sembcorp Industries. 

The project, set to cover some 1487 acres in Hlegu township, Yangon, was signed between Sembcorp CSSD Myanmar Co and local partners City Mart Holding Co Ltd (CMHL), and Myanmar Agribusiness Public Corp (MAPCO) in July 2019.

Sembcorp is expected to hold a 67 percent stake in the project, while City Mart Holding and MAPCO will hold 18pc and 15pc. respectively.

The industrial park has already approved by the Yangon Region Assembly and will focus on food-based industries, the Myanmar Times understands.

Despite having received MIC approval though, the development will likely be delay due to COVID-19 restrictions, according to U Han Thaw Zay, executive director of MAPCO.

“We would commence construction once we receive official permission from MIC. But now we will likely have to postpone the operation to follow instructions such as prevention of mass gatherings set by the government,” he said.

In fact, the investors had been expecting MIC approval in January and construction to commence in March but things were delayed by COVID-19.

Once completed, the industrial park will feature an access road to Thilawa Port Via the Yangon-Mandalay Road so that goods produced in Hlegu can easily be exported and also reach parts of the Myanmar hinterland.

Better known for building the US$ 310 million Sembcorp Myingyan Independent Power Plant in Mandalay, Sembcorp is not new to industrial development, having partnered with countries like China, Indonesia and Vietnam to create integrated townships and industrial parks. In Vietnam, the company has developed nine Vietnam Singapore  Industrial Parks since 1996, for example.

The Hlegu Industrial Park was one of seven new projects valued at US$462.7 million in total and with the potential to generate more than 3600 jobs. The other major new investment involves a US$180 million shopping mall from AEON Japan.

Singapore, China and Thailand are the Top investors in Myanmar this fiscal year. More than half the capital was channeled into the power and oil and gas sectors, while 15pc was channeled into manufacturing, according to DICA.

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