Go for growth, World Bank tells Myanmar

YANGON — Myanmar’s economy has the potential to grow at around eight percent per year over the next five years, according to the World Bank, which has issued a series of policy notes that it says should be priorities to further grow the country’s economy.

“Myanmar is at a historic milestone in its political and economic transition,” said Ulrich Zachau, World Bank director for Southeast Asia. “The great opportunity for Myanmar is to turn continued strong economic growth into better lives for all the people of Myanmar,” he said.

The policy notes, called All Aboard: Policies for Shared Prosperity in Myanmar say that inclusive growth can be best achieved by focussing on three areas: diversifying and further opening the economy, programs that allow access to healthcare, education and reliable energy for all, and transparency and accountability in the public sector.

Speaking at the launch of the policy notes in Yangon on February 23, Habib Rab, a senior economist for World Bank, said that Myanmar has the potential for huge growth in the near future.

“The economy has expanded by seven percent in real terms, one of the strongest in the region. There is an opportunity to make that growth more inclusive,” he said.

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Myanmar has seen an increase in its health and education spending since reforms began in 2011, but it still remains one of the lowest in Southeast Asia.

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