The Myanmar Ministry of Commerce issued Notification No. 11/2016 in 2016. The notification removed trade restrictions on foreign-owned joint venture companies. These trade restrictions previously prevented companies from trading in classes of goods related to medical equipment. The notification outlines the process foreign-owned joint venture companies must take in order to trade hospital equipment in Myanmar. A trading permit must be obtained from the Directorate of Investment and Company Administration.
Myanmar’s healthcare sector is currently lacking in modern medical equipment, which was unavailable mostly due to economic sanctions. Most trading activities are prohibited in Myanmar through numerous regulations such as the Foreign Investment Law of 2012, the Sale of Goods Act/Contract Act, the Export and Import Law of 2012, and other Ministry of Commerce restrictions. With the lifting of trade restrictions on foreign-owned joint venture companies, Myanmar is opening the door for Western medtech companies to expand into the region. Though this notification only lifts restrictions for certain areas of the medtech industry, it is still a major development for foreign device manufacturers.