Foreign companies scramble to assess fall-out in Myanmar after coup

TOKYO: Foreign companies from Japanese retail large Aeon to South Korean buying and selling agency POSCO International and Norway’s Telenor scrambled to assess the turmoil in Myanmar on Monday (Feb 1) after a coup in the nation as soon as feted as Southeast Asia’s final huge frontier.

The Myanmar military seized power towards the democratically elected authorities of Aung San Suu Kyi, who was detained together with different leaders of her celebration in early morning raids.

Live updates: Aung San Suu Kyi, other Myanmar leaders detained

Major multinational companies together with Japan’s Kirin Holdings have pushed into Myanmar since Suu Kyi’s celebration received a landslide election in 2015 and established the primary civilian authorities in half a century.

Although some traders have grown cautious over the persecution of the Rohingya Muslim minority, many companies have remained in Myanmar, drawn by an rising market of greater than 50 million folks.

A spokeswoman for Japanese auto-parts maker Denso Corp stated it was struggling to attain workers after telephone and web connections had been disrupted, whereas a spokesman for Aeon , which has been planning to open a shopping center in Myanmar in 2023, stated it lastly obtained by to native workers by way of the web and was monitoring the scenario.

Other international companies together with Singapore’s Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp (OCBC) and property group Yoma Strategic Holdings reported intermittent disruptions to their enterprise, whereas some closed their places of work.

READ: Aung San Suu Kyi calls on public to reject and protest military coup

“We have closed our Yangon Branch temporarily today in line with the guidance from the Myanmar Bank Association. We have confirmed the safety of all of our colleagues,” stated a spokeswoman for Singapore’s United Overseas Bank.

POSCO International stated it had suggested its South Korean workers in Myanmar to work at home and the corporate is intently monitoring developments.

Norway’s telecoms supplier Telenor stated it’s drastically involved with the present scenario.

“Parts of the mobile network in Myanmar have been down, and the situation remains unclear,” it stated.


The coup heaps extra strain on beer-maker Kirin, which has been reassessing its Myanmar enterprise after the United Nations recognized house owners of Myanmar Economic Holdings Public Company (MEHL), Kirin’s native accomplice, as members of the Myanmar army.

The army has been accused of genocide and different conflict crimes towards the Rohingya. Myanmar denies genocide, saying its army was finishing up legit operations towards Rohingya insurgents who attacked police posts.

READ: All eyes on Myanmar army chief Min Aung Hlaing as military seizes power

A Kirin spokesman stated it was monitoring the scenario, and nonetheless deliberate to take till the top of April to decide about its actions in Myanmar. It just lately stated a third-party probe into MEHL’s army connections had yielded “inconclusive” outcomes.

Myanmar accounts for lower than 5 per cent of Kirin’s international beer gross sales, however is one among solely a handful of its rising markets.

Veteran public relations marketing consultant Bob Pickard, talking about Japanese companies, stated there was now a rising public relations threat.

“Japanese companies invested in Myanmar and especially those with military connections now need to be agile in articulating what these events mean for them,” stated Pickard, who labored in Japan for a few years.

“‘Business as usual’ poses an acute risk a public relations disaster for any Japanese companies that are slow to condemn what has happened today.”

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