The British Embassy and the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) were both present at the meeting in Naypyitaw on 25 April, at which participants committed to coordinating their delivery of technical assistance to the financial sector in Burma.
It was also agreed to establish a number of sub-sectoral groups to carry forward work plans and develop milestones for monitoring performance. Development partners agreed to share their plans, programs, and advice in order to avoid technical assistance duplication, and promote sequenced, coordinated and complementary assistance to the financial sector in Burma. Development partners who were not able to participate in this initial meeting would be welcome to join the Group.
Speaking after the event Anthony Preston, Head of the British Embassy’s Prosperity Team, said:
The UK’s public and private sectors are already making a telling contribution to the development of Burma’s financial sector – and we want to do more. This initiative by the Central Bank, which we welcome, will help all donors coordinate and ensure that our collective activities are demand-led and have the highest possible chance of bringing about sustained, equitable benefits for the people of the country.
The meeting in Naypyitaw on 25 April brought together a wide number of stakeholders, including multilateral agencies - Asian Development Bank, International Finance Corporation, International Monetary Fund (IMF), Livelihoods and Food Security Trust Fund (LIFT), and the Toronto Centre – as well as bilateral development partners – Bank Negara Malaysia, Bank of Thailand, Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), the Japanese Government and the United Kingdom’s Foreign & Commonwealth Office and the Department for International Development (DFID).
The UK, through the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the Department for International Development, is supporting the development of Burma’s financial sector in a number of ways, including:
• The Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) recently signed an MoU for training and collaboration with the Myanmar Institute for Certified Public Accountants (MICPA) to develop an independent and functioning accountancy sector. ICAEW’s work is UK-funded.
• The UK has also funded GovRisk to directly assist the Burmese authorities’ ability to develop their anti-money laundering (AML) processes and capacity.
• The UK Financial Services Taskforce, comprised of a number of UK financial sector companies, continues to provide tailored advice and training to support reform in the banking and financial sectors. Working with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) to assist the Central Bank and other relevant stakeholders in developing a credit reporting system.
• Partnering with the Myanmar Banks Association (MBA) to deliver a number of training courses to banking staff in the areas of SME Banking, Risk Management and Trade Finance in the commercial centres of Rangoon and Mandalay.