A collaboration to develop the Dawei megaproject is due to start on time, with the two leading Thai construction companies and the Myanmar government set to sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) next month.
The Myanmar government and Thai companies Rojana Industrial Park Plc and SET-listed Italian-Thai Development Plc (ITD) are scheduled to sign the MoU to develop the first phase of Dawei’s 20,000-rai industrial estate, said Somjet Tinnapong, managing director of Dawei Development Co, a subsidiary of Ital-Thai.
“There will be no delay, as the signing ceremony is set for July,” he said, adding that a hiccup last month was caused by the Myanmar government, which needed to clear up some of its investment regulations.
Foreign investors from Japan and the Netherlands are still in talks with the Myanmar government about deals to develop infrastructure facilities in Dawei including power plants and water supply units.
The venture is expected to cost 20 billion baht of investment during the first phase, with Ital-Thai and Rojana sharing the budget equally. Ital-Thai is in talks with foreign investors to be strategic partners developing infrastructure facilities.
Investors from China and Singapore are also interested in providing water supply for the first phase, while another group of Chinese and Japanese entrepreneurs want to invest in manufacturing when the industrial estate is fully developed.
“They are very interested in investing but awaiting clear policy and investment regulations from the Myanmar authorities, as they are a sign the government is serious about the project,” Mr Somjet said.
Thailand and Myanmar agreed in June 2013 to set up Dawei SEZ Development Co (DSEZ) with an equal shareholding and initial investment of 12 million baht, far below the 100 million proposed earlier. The company is registered in Thailand.
DSEZ replaced Ital-Thai, which had received the original concession from the Myanmar government for the megaproject in November 2010.
Japan is also to join the partnership for DSEZ, the special-purpose vehicle (SPV) that will manage the deep-sea port and SEZ.
Japan intends to participate in the project in terms of both technical and financial support.
Thailand and Myanmar also agreed to set up SPVs to manage the port, road and rail links, power plants, waterworks, industrial estates, telecommunications and a township.
ITD shares closed yesterday on the SET at 8.05 baht, up 10 satang, in trade worth 395 million baht.