Foreign investors have purchased over 4.489 million shares of four listed companies on the Yangon Stock Exchange (YSX) so far, according to statistics released by the exchange.
The Securities and Exchange Commission of Myanmar (SECM) has allowed foreigners to invest in the local equity market from 20 March 2020.
At present, shares of six listed companies — First Myanmar Investment (FMI), Myanmar Thilawa SEZ Holdings (MTSH), Myanmar Citizens Bank (MCB), First Private Bank (FPB), TMH Telecom Public Co. Ltd, Ever Flow River Group Public Co., Ltd (EFR) and Amata Holding Public Co., Ltd (AMATA) — are available for local investors for trading. Foreigners invest in FMI, MTSH, TMH and EFR on the exchange. FPB is for block trade only.
The foreign investors are about to reach the upper limit of 14 per cent for shareholding with FMI and consequently, the status of buy order acceptance is suspended for now. The foreign shareholding ratio of the companies on the exchange, except FMI, is less than one per cent.
As of 19 January 2022, foreigners hold over 4.45 million shares of FMI, over 27,897 shares of MTSH, 5,445 shares of TMH and 3,002 shares of EFR, YSX’s statistics indicated.
The SECM, under the Ministry of Planning and Finance, issued a notice on 12 July 2019, announcing that foreigners would be allowed to invest in shares listed on the YSX.
After opening bank and securities accounts, an investor can send buying/selling orders under the stock trading rules stipulated in the Trading Business Regulations, the SECM notified.
Foreign participation would entail better capital inflows, long term and sustainable investment, encourage good corporate governance, and support market orientation, YSX stated.
Regarding share trading, foreign investors must strictly comply with the rules stipulated by the Central Bank of Myanmar.
The security companies will monitor the daily trades of foreigners, in keeping with the rules and regulations, so that they do not exceed the limit set for each listed company.
Under Section 42 (a) of the Securities and Exchange Law and Section 4 of the Trading Participant Business Regulations, the YSX has granted trading qualifications to the following securities companies — Myanmar Securities Exchange Centre Co. Ltd. (MSEC), KBZ Stirling Coleman Securities Co. Ltd. (KBZSC), CB Securities Limited (CBSC), AYA Trust Securities Co. Ltd. (AYATSC), KTZ Ruby Hill Securities Co. Ltd. (KTZRH), and UAB Securities Limited (UABSC). YSX launched a pre-listing board (PLB) on 28 September 2020 in order to provide unlisted public companies with fund-raising opportunities and build a bridge toward listing on the exchange, YSX stated.
The YSX was launched four years ago to improve the private business sector. It disseminates rules and regulations regarding the stock exchange and knowledge of share trading through stock investment seminars. The stock exchange has also sought the government’s support to get more public companies to participate in the stock market and help more institutional investors, such as financing companies, investment banks, and insurance companies, to emerge. — KK/GNLM