The Central Bank of Myanmar is initiating the process of further opening up the banking sector for foreign players.
It is looking at a second round of issue of new overseas bank licences early next year, when it will call for expression of interests.
Buoyed by the response it got in the first round, the apex bank is hoping the second round will see new foreign banks participate from neighbouring and significant trade partner countries.
According to the Central Bank of Myanmar press release, the licence will be granted to banks for providing “onshore wholesale banking through a branch.”
However, in this round, the apex bank will not permit those countries whose representative banks won licences in the previous one. These banks represent the countries of Australia, Japan, Malaysia, China, Singapore and Thailand.
In May 2014, nine foreign financial institutions bagged permission to open a branch and conduct onshore wholesale banking business. The first batch of banks who were awarded licences were Bangkok Bank, Australia’s ANZ, Japan’s the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Mizuho Bank, Sumitomo Mitsui Bank Corporation, the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC), Malaysia’s Maybank, and Singapore’s Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation (OCBC) and United Overseas Bank (UOB).
The foreign banks that have representative offices in Myanmar or are in the process of obtaining a license are permitted to participate. Promoting existing economic corporation is the main objective of the second round of licensing, it said.