Myanmar’s economy slump after coup

Myanmar’s economy is set to slump dramatically in the wake of the Feb. 1, military coup, according to the Asian Development Bank (ADB).

The institution has now predicted an 18.4-per-cent year-on-year decline in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for the troubled country in its economic outlook for the region for 2021.

The country formerly known as Burma was the only country in South-East Asia in the list where economic output was declining.

The Myanmar currency rate has been decreasing and the central bank has sold at least 45 million dollars within the last 10 days, but it has not stopped the rise in the U.S. dollar exchange rates on the market.

Junta chief Min Aung Hlaing this week expressed optimism that the crisis can be overcome by means of a six-month national plan.

“If Myanmar can upgrade the industries based on agriculture and livestock farms, the state economy is sure to resurge,’’ he said.

Experts see it differently. Citizens have as little trust in the military leadership as in the central bank, an adviser to a top business group in Myanmar, who wished to remain anonymous, told dpa on Friday.

“Due to the decrease in the economy, there isn’t much demand from the consumers, so they are buying only necessity items.

“To revive this within six months is impossible,” the adviser stressed.

In 2020, GDP growth was still around 3.2 per cent. In 2019, Myanmar was even still among the most dynamic economies in the region, with GDP growth of 6.8 per cent.

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