Maybank officially launches its Myanmar operations

06 October 2015
Maybank officially launches its Myanmar operations
Maybank has officially launch its Yangon branch, becoming the first and only Malaysian bank to obtain foreign banking license in Myanmar. Photo: Maybank

Maybank has officially launched its Myanmar operations, aiming to focus on transaction banking, corporate lending and treasury services as part of its objective to establish itself as a leading cross-border bank in Myanmar the company said in a statement on 5 October.
The Maybank Yangon branch, which has a registered capital of US$75 million, was officiated by the Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Myanmar H.E. U Set Aung and Deputy Governor, Bank Negara Malaysia, Dato’ Muhammad Ibrahim at a special reception held at the Sule Shangri-La Hotel, Yangon. Also present at the event were Maybank Chairman, Tan Sri Megat Zaharuddin Megat Mohd Nor; CEO, Maybank International, Pollie Sim; Myanmar Minister of Energy H.E. U Zar Yar Aung; Malaysian Ambassador to Myanmar, HE Mohd Haniff Abdul Rahman, as well as corporate clients, business partners and local government officials.
Tan Sri Megat in his speech said that Maybank has always believed in Myanmar and the region’s potential. “We have been present in Myanmar for over the last 20 years and have extensive network in all 10 ASEAN countries. In anticipation of the formalisation of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC), we have focused our efforts in the past few years to building up our capabilities to serve the enlarged communities of 600 million people. We are after all, ASEAN-based most diversified financial services group with operations in all the world’s financial centres.”
He said the coming into force of the AEC at the end of this year is going to change the economic landscape in Asia. “With the harmonisation and integration of the flow of goods, services, people and capital, there will be plenty of opportunities across the region. As well as the AEC, Myanmar’s intrinsic advantage of its strategic location at the heart of Asia, backed by rich endowments of natural resources and supported by a growing labour force, creates an unprecedented growth potential to accelerate development.”
Meanwhile, Pollie Sim said that Maybank was in a unique position to offer cross-border banking solutions by leveraging the Group’s expertise and extensive reach.
“Our focus will be on supporting wholesale and corporate clients as well as domestic banks in Myanmar with services such as deposit accounts, working capital financing, transaction banking, cash management, treasury and capital market solutions,” she said.
Pollie explained that Maybank would be able to offer clients in Myanmar a comprehensive range of end-to-end wholesale banking solutions that would also include advisory services, balance sheet financing and/or distribution, trade financing, as well as solutions to manage forex and interest rate risks.
In conjunction with the official launch of the Yangon branch, Maybank also organised a one-day “Capabilities Building in Myanmar” conference bringing together experts to share insights on banking and investments in the country. These included topics on the Legal Landscape, Accounting and Tax regulations for investors, and Risk Management and Project Financing for officials from the Central Bank and domestic commercial banks.
At the official launch reception, Maybank also announced its Corporate Responsibility initiative in Myanmar named Project HEART which aims to support rural communities through the provision of solar-powered light bulbs which would enhance their living conditions. The first rural community to benefit from this scheme is Hintada District, located some 160 kilometres from Yangon. Project HEART or Helping Every Asian Rise Together programme is a region-wide community-driven initiative in line with Maybank Group’s larger mission to “humanize financial services”.
Tan Sri Megat Zaharuddin presented a solar powered light bulb to Hintada District Governor, U San Htay as a symbolic gesture of Maybank’s commitment to support the community there with a contribution of 2,612 light bulbs to 1,328 homes and solar light system to 5 schools. “Through our Project HEART, we hope to touch the lives of at least 5,000 people by providing light to households living within communities without access to electricity due to geographical or economic challenges,” he said.