KPMG celebrated the opening of its office in Myanmar with a ceremony and reception on November 26, 2012 at the Park Royal Hotel in Yangon. KPMG in Myanmar, which was officially opened with an announcement on October 30, 2012, welcomed over 200 local and international guests.
The guest list included high-level members of local business organizations, MNCs, ambassadors, trade representatives from several embassies, and key members of NGOs who have a presence in Myanmar. KPMG regional and global leadership was in attendance, as well as KPMG leadership from Asia Pacific.
KPMG Recognizes Significance of Emerging Markets
At the KPMG in Myanmar opening ceremony, KPMG Global Chairman Michael Andrew highlighted the importance of emerging markets for KPMG globally. “KPMG has a history of pioneering new markets,” he said. KPMG was the first of the global Big Four professional services firms to reopen in Myanmar after sanctions were recently lifted.
“We’ve been looking forward to returning to Myanmar because we see high interest in Myanmar from our global clients,” said Andrew. “We enter these high growth markets before our clients to understand the local market and pave the way for them,” he added. In May 2012 KPMG opened an office in the frontier market of Mongolia.
“In particular we recognize the strategic importance of Asian markets for our global clients,” said Andrew, who oversees KPMG global strategic direction from his base in Hong Kong.
“Now that the situation is changing and Myanmar is opening up once more, I am delighted to be able to renew the relationship between Myanmar and KPMG and support foreign investment in the country,” said non-executive Chairman of KPMG Myanmar, Mr. Htain Lin.
Myanmar’s High Growth Potential
Myanmar’s potential to be a high growth market continues to build, as economic reforms such as the Myanmar Foreign Investment Law (MFIL), move forward at a steady pace. “We see interest in investing and doing business in Myanmar coming from developing as well as developed countries,” says KPMG Thailand CEO Kaisri Nuengsigkapian.
“We have clients interested in Myanmar across all industries and sectors, and not just from global MNCs. There is a high degree of inter-ASEAN interest as well,” added Nuengsigkapian, who is also responsible for KPMG in Lao.
Providing a view from Singapore, Mr Tham Sai Choy, Managing Partner of KPMG in Singapore said: “The strides Myanmar has made in its reintegration into global society are as remarkable as they are rapid. The business opportunities which Myanmar can offer are immense.
As a business hub, Singapore is well positioned to support businesses in their foray into the Myanmar market. We are excited about the opening of the KPMG office in Myanmar. This will allow us to better serve our clients who are searching for opportunities in this emerging market.”
Japanese companies also make up a significant portion of Myanmar’s foreign business community. Mr. Hideyo Uchiyama, Chairman of KPMG Asia Pacific, delivered a special greeting to Japanese clients and guests at KPMG Myanmar’s opening ceremony.
“The infrastructure in Myanmar is still developing, and there is much work to be done to receive foreign businesses. KPMG will base Japanese CPAs in Yangon to serve our Japanese clients in Myanmar,” affirmed Uchiyama.
Giving Back to the Community
One of the core values of KPMG is supporting and developing communities. In Myanmar KPMG is focusing on hiring local talent and providing them with valuable skills and training.
At the KPMG Myanmar Grand Opening, KPMG Scholarships for university students at the University of Yangon and Yangon Institute of Economics were awarded to the Ministry of Education.
“As we officially return to Myanmar we’re looking ahead to the long-term and building the skills of the local workforce,” says Nuengsigkapian. “We’re working with universities in Yangon to create KPMG scholarships for students in accounting and law degrees. We want to encourage the development of a skilled, educated workforce of accountants, consultants and tax advisors and give them the opportunity to work in KPMG Myanmar, Thailand or any of our other offices,” she added.