Myanmar is now in the process of promoting SMEs to drive up the national economic growth. However, facts showed that the country is still facing with the challenges of low utilization of FTAs, inadequate foreign investment, underdeveloped institutional and infrastructure development and red tapes for administrative processing and approval.
The Mekong Institute, with the support from the New Zealand Aid program is currently implementing a three year project on 'Integrating CLMV economies into AEC 2015'. As part of the project, a two-day workshop of "Enhancing the Utilization of FTA by SMEs" was organized by the Ministry of Commerce, Ministry of National Planning and Economic Development and UMFCCI in Yangon from October 16 to 17, 2014. The main aim of the workshop was to localize the training packages in Myanmar by the MI trained professionals.
A total of 30 participants comprising of government officials from trade-related departments, SME/ business associations, SME owners attended the workshop. The workshop covered topics on trade in services, Non-Tariff Measures (NTM), SME export products, custom cooperation, trade facilitation and Rules of Origin (RoO). The participants also got the chance to learn the trade negotiation skills through simulation exercises.
This workshop helped the participants apply the knowledge and skills to enhance utilization of FTAs so as to assist the SMEs to integrate into the regional and global value chain.