Law & Regulation

Law and Regulation

Timeline Set for Changes to Import/Export Licensing and Registration Requirements in Myanmar


The Myanmar Ministry of Commerce has set the timeline for foreign-owned and joint venture companies importing or exporting specific categories of goods to apply for retail and wholesale services registration. These changes are outlined in Notification 23/2019 from Myanmar’s Ministry of Commerce (MoC) supporting last year’s opening-up of retail and wholesale to foreign companies (on which see our recent article here). The notification was issued on May 21, 2019, and requires affected companies currently operating with import/export licenses to submit their applications within 90 days—that is, by August 19, 2019. The categories of goods to which the notification applies are as follows:  Fertilizers  Seeds  Pesticides  Hospital equipment  Construction materials  Agricultural machinery Companies importing or exporting these goods for sale or wholesale now need to register with the MoC in accordance with the terms and conditions laid out in MoC Notification No. 25/2018, which first opened up Myanmar’s retail and wholesale sector to foreign companies in May 2018. The registration procedures, documents required, and minimum capital requirements for registration are laid out in our previous article on these licensing requirements, here. Capital requirements under Notification 25/2018, if not already satisfied by affected companies currently in operation, will have to be met within five years of the date of registration. Violations of this requirement, or any other provision of Notification No. 25/2018, Newsletter No. 2/2018, or Notification 23/2019, are punishable under rules, orders, and notifications issued by the Ministry of Commerce and existing laws and regulations. As these applications for retail and wholesale services registrations are due by August 19, 2019, it is essential that companies affected begin the application process as soon as possible in order to maintain the legality of their operations and prevent disruption to their business. Companies that wish to offer import/export services for the above categories of goods in the future will need to secure an import/export license in addition to registration for retail and wholesale services.