Myanmar border trade up by $500m

Trade at Myanmar’s border posts as of mid-November showed a 14% rise over last year despite a fall in trade at some locations due to armed conflict or natural disaster, according to the Commerce Ministry statistics.

Total trade at the 15 border stations stands at more than US$4 billion, $500 million more than at this time last year, the Myanmar Times reported on Tuesday.

The first eight months of the current financial year has seen an increase in trade of $492.91 million compared to last year, that is, from $3.75 billion to $4.24 billion.

Myanmar’s fiscal year goes from April 1 to March 31.

The busiest station was Muse on the Chinese border, which has recorded $306.89 million more than last year, an increase to $3.25 billion from $2.95 billion.

The second largest was Myawaddy on the Thai border in Mae Sot district in Tak province, which nearly doubled its trade from $210.62 million last year to $410.11 million this year, an increase of $199.49 million.

Chinshwehaw, in the troubled Kokang region, was in third place despite a reduction of $45.07 million, falling from $262.58 million to $217.51 million. Fighting broke out in Kokang last February and continued for much of the year.

Lwe Jal border post brought in $44.34 million, Kan Pike Tee $31.80 million, Kyaitone $8.99 million, Tachilek $42.53 million, Nu Bu Le/Htee Khee $9.95 million, Maw Taung $1.03 million, Sittwe $3.98 million, Maungdaw $2.94 million, Tamu $24.78 million, and Reed station had $13.50 million.

Trade was up compared to last year at all stations except Chinshwehaw, Tachileik, Maungdaw and Tamu.

At Maungdaw, which handles mainly fisheries products, a spokesperson said storms had resulted in smaller catches and greater difficulty in transporting the products to the border.

“An embankment broke and production fell. The main export from Maungdaw to Bangladesh was saltwater shrimp, whose price was reduced,” he said.

Shrimp from Maungdaw and Sittwe was sent to Yangon instead of being exported, reducing exports still further.

Source: Bangkok Post

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