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Euromonitor International identifies Myanmar as one of the 20 Markets of the Future that will offer the most opportunities for consumer goods companies globally. The country is one of the fastest growing and most promising economies in Asia Pacific; however, market intelligence is extremely limited in this part of the world and the business environment is complicated. Based on in-depth local research, store checks and interviews with key market players and consumers, for the first time Euromonitor
International aims at providing extensive assessment of Myanmar’s major consumer industries.
This report offers the world’s most comprehensive market size and brand share data for all major consumer markets, complemented by analysis of Myanmar’s business environment, economic and demographic situation, infrastructure, communications and consumer lifestyles. Data and market analysis will advance your knowledge of the country and its competitive environment, ensuring accurate and focused strategies for your business. With over 50 consumer categories covered, the report will provide a full picture of Myanmar consumers and will enable the pinpointing of market opportunities.
Last Economic Frontier in Asia
Myanmar’s economic development was marked by long-lasted economic stagnation in the past. However, since 2008, the country has engaged in economic liberalisation and a democratisation process that has spurred economic growth of the country. Myanmar is identified as the last economic frontier in Asia with significant growth potential. Real annual GDP growth in Myanmar stood at 6% on average over 2009-2013. The country also provides substantial growth opportunities in the future, and it is anticipated that real annual GDP growth will stand at 8% between 2013 and 2018. Number of middle class consumers in Myanmar is also expected to double by 2020.
Natural Resources to Boost Country’s Development
Myanmar is rich in natural resources, such as gas, oil, gems, zinc and copper. The country is also rich in timber and has huge potential for hydropower energy sector development. Lifting of international economic sanctions and liberalisation of foreign trade and investment rules are anticipated to boost energy, mining and oil industries in the country. Each year the government holds mining auctions that bring US$1-2 billion per year, and this revenue could contribute significantly to the development of the country in a relatively short period of time.
Young and Growing Population is Set to Reach 56 Million by 2020
Myanmar has one of the largest populations in Southeast Asia, estimated at more than 53 million people in 2013. The mean age of the population was 30 years, below the Asia Pacific average. It is anticipated that the number of people in Myanmar will reach 56 million by 2020. Although the majority of the population lives in rural areas, economic growth is expected to drive further urbanisation in the future.
All Consumer Markets Booming
Over the 2009-2013 period, all consumer goods categories in Myanmar recorded significant growth. Packaged food sales experienced a 12% CAGR to reach a market value of US$1.6 billion in 2013. Canned/preserved food and baby food were the most dynamic packaged food categories, recording CAGRs of 24% and 22%, respectively, between 2009 and 2013. Overall packaged food sales are anticipated to register a CAGR of 15% between 2014 and 2018.
Soft drinks experienced a CAGR of 18% in value terms over 2009-2013 reaching a market value of US$264 million in the latter year. Juice (CAGR 23%) and carbonates (CAGR 14%) were the two largest soft drinks categories, amounting to US$102 million and US$100 million, respectively, in 2013. Value sales of soft drinks are anticipated to grow at a CAGR of 23% over 2014-2018.
Middle Class Bolsters Demand for Non-essential Products
Growing middle class and increasing consumer sophistication also bolstered sales of non-essential products, such as beauty and personal care, tissue and hygiene and home care products. Beauty and personal care reached a market value of US$318 million in 2013, after growing at a CAGR of 14% since 2009. Tissue and hygiene grew at a CAGR 12% and reached a market value of US$159 million in 2013. Home care reached a market value of US$153 million, after registering a CAGR of 11% over 2009-2013.
Complicated Business Environment is Set to Improve
Even though the situation is improving, complicated investment rules and a difficult business environment remain among the main drawbacks in Myanmar. As a result, the country has been ranked as one of the least attractive places worldwide to do business. Lack of clear trade and investment rules, corruption, high government influence on the economy and undeveloped capital markets are the main problems that companies faces in Myanmar. Nevertheless, the country is implementing economic reforms and liberalisation of the market. Myanmar is also expected to join the ASEAN Economic Community in 2015, which will eliminate many trade and investment restrictions.
Infrastructure Constraints Set to be Eliminated
Undeveloped transport infrastructure and constraints in electricity supply are among the hurdles that companies operating in Myanmar face. However, the situation is improving. The country’s authorities are creating a network of international highways to boost regional cooperation, and Myanmar could become a land bridge between Southeast Asia and mainland Asia. In addition, a new sea port, supported in part by private investment, has been built near Yangon, in order to handle growing flows of international trade. The Ministry of Electric Power has also identified 300 locations for the construction of new hydropower plants, which are anticipated to solve electricity shortage in the country.
Supply-driven Market Provides Growth Opportunities for Retailers
Due to high import duties, infrastructure constraints and an undeveloped supply chain, Myanmar is a supply-driven market, as consumer demand for goods outstrips supply. Modern retail in Myanmar is also in the development stage, and traditional markets account for 90% of retail sales. However, the situation is improving rapidly. Modern retailers have aggressive plans to expand in second-tier cities in Myanmar, and major players in Myanmar’s modern retail sector have plans to develop consumer goods logistics and distribution networks across the country. The number of potential consumers is also expected to increase, and consumer expenditure is anticipated to triple over the next 10 years.
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