The military regime is set to drop meaningful structural reforms from an economic recovery plan initiated by the former National League for Democracy government, and is instead promising to slash red tape in a bid to shore up collapsing business confidence.
Some factory owners have been accused of exploiting and failing to protect their employees during the latest COVID-19 outbreak, and with unions lying low since the coup, workers are unable to seek redress.
The World Bank has warned in a new report that Myanmar faces severe economic losses and a doubling of poverty as a result of the combined impact of the coup and COVID-19, with the military regime unable to govern effectively.
Bankers say they are facing threats of nationalisation or forced reopening as the military regime grapples with an industry-wide strike, but a lack of physical cash also looms as a potential crisis point.
The government is planning to purchase paddy at a floor price set to ensure farmers get a decent return and some rice traders are also pushing for another round of rice-buying to maintain the country’s reserve stocks.
The digital payments sector has boomed in Myanmar over the past six months as consumers have sought to minimise contact with others to curb the spread of COVID-19, and new investment and plans for interoperability could soon deliver a much bigger boost.
The Kayin State Border Guard Force has come under intense pressure from the Tatmadaw over its extensive, controversial business interests and there’s concern the ultimatum could trigger fresh hostilities in one of the country’s most war-torn areas.