Burma Economy

Is Burma a rich country?

Since Burma began the transition to a civilian-led government in 2011, the country initiated economic reforms aimed at attracting foreign investment and reintegrating into the global economy. Burma established a managed float of the Burmese kyat in 2012, granted the Central Bank operational independence in July 2013, enacted a new anti-corruption law in September 2013, and granted licenses to 13 foreign banks in 2014-16. State Counsellor AUNG SAN SUU KYI and the ruling National League for Democracy, who took power in March 2016, have sought to improve Burma’s investment climate following the US sanctions lift in October 2016 and reinstatement of Generalized System of Preferences trade benefits in November 2016. In October 2016, Burma passed a foreign investment law that consolidates investment regulations and eases rules on foreign ownership of businesses.

Burma’s economic growth rate recovered from a low growth under 6% in 2011 but has been volatile between 6% and 7.2% during the past few years. Burma’s abundant natural resources and young labor force have the potential to attract foreign investment in the energy, garment, information technology, and food and beverage sectors. The government is focusing on accelerating agricultural productivity and land reforms, modernizing and opening the financial sector, and developing transportation and electricity infrastructure. The government has also taken steps to improve transparency in the mining and oil sectors through publication of reports under the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) in 2016 and 2018.

Despite these improvements, living standards have not improved for the majority of the people residing in rural areas. Burma remains one of the poorest countries in Asia – approximately 26% of the country’s 51 million people live in poverty. The isolationist policies and economic mismanagement of previous governments have left Burma with poor infrastructure, endemic corruption, underdeveloped human resources, and inadequate access to capital, which will require a major commitment to reverse. The Burmese Government has been slow to address impediments to economic development such as unclear land rights, a restrictive trade licensing system, an opaque revenue collection system, and an antiquated banking system.

Burma Economy Data

What is the GDP of Burma?

Currency Name and Code kyats (MMK)
GDP - Gross Domestic Product (PPP) $311,100,000,000 (USD)
GDP - official exchange rate $68,280,000,000 (USD)
GDP - real growth rate 8.1%
GDP Per Capita $6,000.00 (USD)
GDP by Sector- agriculture 26.3%
GDP by Sector- Industry 27.5%
GDP by Sector- services 46.2%
GDP - composition, by end use household consumption: 57.9%

government consumption: 6.2%

investment in fixed capital: 37.7%

investment in inventories: 0.2%

exports of goods and services: 24.4%

imports of goods and services: -26.4%
Population Below Poverty Line 32.7%
Inflation Rate 7%
Labor Force 37,150,000
Labor Force By Occupation- agriculture 70%
Labor Force By Occupation- industry 7%
Labor Force By Occupation- services 23%
Unemployment Rate 4.8%
Fiscal Year 1 April - 31 March
Annual Budget $8,944,000,000 (USD)
Budget Surplus or Deficit - percent of GDP -3%
Taxes and other revenues - percent of GDP 13.1%
Major Industries agricultural processing; wood and wood products; copper, tin, tungsten, iron; cement, construction materials; pharmaceuticals; fertilizer; oil and natural gas; garments; jade and gems
Industrial Growth Rate 12.2%
Agriculture Products rice, pulses, beans, sesame, groundnuts; sugarcane; fish and fish products; hardwood
Exchange Rate per US Dollar 1205.9
Commercial Bank Prime Lending Rate 15%

Labor Force by Occupation- As reported by Burma

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