The Straits Times
Published on May 30, 2013

Myanmar economy 'could hit $253b in 2030'

But study says fourfold rise requires making right political, economic choices


COMING out of decades of stagnation that made it one of the world's poorest countries, Myanmar could quadruple its gross domestic product in 20 years - if it makes the right political and economic choices, says a study by McKinsey Global Institute.

"Myanmar is at a pivotal moment," the MGI report says. "There is everything to play for - but also a major risk of disappointment."

Investors rosy with optimism have been flocking to Myanmar by the planeload since it started rolling out democratic and market reforms more than two years ago.

The report by the independent global management consulting firm titled "Myanmar's moment: Unique opportunities, major challenges" highlights what the investors have been learning: that the country is complex and at times unpredictable and they should temper any high hopes with pragmatism. The study cites Myanmar's significant natural resource assets - oil and gas, precious and semi-precious stones, the "world's 25th largest endowment of arable land" and "10 times the per capita water endowment of China and India" - in addition to a large workforce.