asialaw Analysis

General business law
Allen & Gledhill
Work highlights

Acting for the New Yangon Development Company on its series of projects to develop the western region of Central Yangon, the ‘New Yangon City’. The first phase, valued at $1.5 billion, is scheduled to be completed at the end of 2020. This project marks the first time the government of Myanmar has adopted the Swiss Challenge procurement model.

Representing the Adani Yangon International Terminal Company in the development, operation and maintenance of the $290 million Ahlone International Port Terminal and container yard on a BOT basis.

Acted for PTT Public Company on its $200 million joint venture with Kanbawza Group to develop an oil terminal and expand the retail business.

Advised onshore conglomerate and real estate developer Shwe Taung on its joint venture agreement with Aeon Mall Company to develop, manage and operate several shopping malls. This is Japanese conglomerate Aeon’s maiden entry into the Myanmar market for shopping mall projects.

Key clients

Ever Investment Company, GIC Private, Grand Guardian Nippon Life Insurance Company, Myanmar Golden Eagle Company, Yankin Kyay-Oh Group of Companies

Work highlights

Advising Norfund on its joint venture with the IFC and Yoma Strategic Holdings on its recently launched $200 million solar mini-grid site in a local village. 

Acted for Dai-Ichi Life Holdings on becoming the first licensed foreign life insurance provider in the country. Its licence approval was granted in April 2019.

Represented Yoma Strategic Holdings on the precedent-setting first registration of a mortgage over a leasehold interest of immovable property in favour of a foreign lender. This related to the $650 million Yoma Central mixed-use real estate development in downtown Yangon.

Acting for SF Holdings on its $4 million minority acquisition of Kospa, one of the first M&A transactions in the logistics sector of Myanmar. 

Key clients

AIA Group, ANZ, Hyundai Motors, IFC, OPIC, Osotspa Myanmar Company, State Bank of India, World Bank

Duane Morris & Selvam
Work highlights

Advising Sembcorp Utilities on its $250 million financing of its gas-fired power plant project in Myingyan, Myanmar, the first internationally competitively tendered power project in the country and its biggest gas-fired power station to date.

Acting for Indian oil and gas company ONGC Videsh, on all aspects of regulatory and compliance matters, such as contractual matters with government authorities and third-party service providers.

Representing a South Asian foreign licensed bank on its short-term revolving credit of $5.2 million to a Korean micro-financing company in Myanmar.

Key clients

Ashro Singapore, OIL India, Ponna International, SDCI Myanmar

Kelvin Chia Yangon
Work highlights

Advising Philippines conglomerate Ayala Corporation on its $238 million investment in two Myanmar companies controlled by local tycoon Serge Pun. The client is set to purchase a 20% stake in Pun’s Singapore-listed Yoma Strategic Holdings and 20% in Yangon-listed First Myanmar Investment.

Representing Thai Amata Corporation on its $1 billion deal with the construction ministry to build a smart city in northeastern Yangon. This project will yield more than 30,000 new jobs and $60 million in direct taxes.

Acting for a domestic property management company on the preparation, reviewing and drafting of a suite of real estate agreements for retail, wholesale and residential buildings the client is planning to develop in the country.

Advising a licensed Chinese bank in relation to various syndicated loans led by the client. Work for the client includes drafting finance documents, conducting due diligence, providing legal opinions and assisting in the review of foreign exchange account management.

Nishimura & Asahi (Myanmar)
Work highlights

Advising Ishii Hospital on the potential opening of a hospital in Yangon together with other investors, a project valued at $37 million. The firm has been coordinating with relevant authorities to obtain the necessary licences and advising the client on project structuring.

Representing Japanese telecoms giant KDDI Corporation in obtaining a wholesale licence for one of its subsidiaries from the Ministry of Commerce.

Key clients

Japan External Trade Organisation, Japan International Cooperation Agency

Rajah & Tann Myanmar
Work highlights

Acting for a consortium of investors from Japan, Singapore and Myanmar on the development of the $2.2 billion Yangon Central Railway Station project, a landmark matter that was the first to be listed in the local government’s project bank.

Advised Sompo Japan Nipponkoa Insurance on its $60 million acquisition of a significant minority stake in AYA Myanmar General Insurance.

Representing Yangon Metropolitan Development on drafting and negotiating the concession agreement between the Yangon regional government and Malaysian conglomerate Berjaya Land to develop public housing and commercial projects. This $750 million project is expected to be the first foreign investment into the country for the development of affordable housing and sale of residential units. It will develop 183 acres of land.

Advised Power and Best Oil Company in its $127 million investment by SK Energy. This transaction was SK Energy’s first overseas investment and involved the restructuring of the client’s fuel terminal and retail kiosk operations. 

Key clients

Eco World Developer Holding Company, Kachin State Government, PTT Public Company

Thanlwin Legal
Work highlights

Advising the Ruili Government in China on the structuring of the $300 million Myanmar China Highway project, which includes seven BOT concession agreements and negotiations in Ruili with the Chinese government and its Myanmar counterpart.

Represented Yangon-Htantabin Technology Park on laying out its strategy of proposing the development and construction of a $360 million high-tech industrial park project to the Myanmar government that would be equipped with 2000 acres, roads bridge, power plant and a cargo terminal. The legal team negotiated and drafted the MoU concession and lease agreement with the Yangon Region Government. The project was successfully endorsed by the Taiwan and Myanmar government.

Acting for the China Development Bank and the China Export & Credit Insurance Corporation on financing local telecom tower operator Eco-Friendly Tower Company as it builds thousands of telecommunications towers throughout the country.  

Key clients

Asia Myanmar Shining Star

Tilleke & Gibbins
Work highlights

Acting for a Thai listed company on its proposal to acquire a 100% equity interest, valued at $12 million, in a licensed microfinance company in Myanmar.

Working with a major domestic financial institution on facilitating multi-party agreements to provide mobile money transfer services.

Engaged by one of the world’s largest technology companies on all legal aspects as it expands into the Myanmar telecommunications industry. In addition to general regulatory advice, the team has advised extensively on the country’s new competition law and anti-corruption regime, data protection issues, the use of algorithms to influence online consumer behaviour, and laws governing the operation and management of online platforms.

Advising the Myanmar subsidiary of a leading Thai paint manufacturer and distributor on all aspects of its complex market entry in Myanmar. The mandate included establishing a joint venture to operate a wholesale business for selling paint with an initial investment of $12 million, establishing a subsidiary in the Thilawa Special Economic Zone, applying for an offshore loan agreement, and assisting with ongoing corporate secretarial work as the company structure evolves.

Key clients


Work highlights

Acting for a local energy sector client relating to the development of a rooftop solar commercial and industrial (C&I) power project in Myanmar. The team advised on the available structures available under Myanmar law, tax efficiency structuring and the drafting, and revising of a C&I power purchase agreement.

Representing the sponsors on the development of the Shweli 3 hydropower project.

Acting for an export-import financial institution lender on a finance expansion loan for a cement manufacturing plant in Myanmar.

Advising the offshore sponsor for the development of a potential LNG terminal in Rakhine state. This project is expected to become one of the largest fuel terminals in the country.

Key clients

EDFI Management Company, FMO

WongPartnership (Myanmar)
Work highlights

Advised Chip Eng Seng Construction’s acquisition from Sembawang Corporation of the entire issued and paid-up share capital of Sembcorp Design and Construction for $36.7 million. This acquisition included the Myanmar subsidiary SDCI, which designs and constructs power plants in Myanmar.

Acted as local counsel for Sodexo Services Asia’s acquisition of a 61.8% stake in Active Global Health Sciences Education Group. The target is a private Singapore company that has contractual arrangements in Myanmar with domestic entities.

Represented Denko Petroleum Company as the borrower in the grant of a $25 million term loan facility by ICBC Yangon for the construction and operation of its Thilawa Port oil depot project.

Key clients

Andaman Alliance Healthcare, Singapore Airlines, Sumitomo Osaka Cement

Work highlights

Advising Myanmar-Singapore (Hlegu) Industrial Park on its MIC licensing applications related to the development of a $230 million GDV industrial park. The project company client is a significant joint-venture between Sembcorp and two Myanmar conglomerates.

Acted for Supreme Group Trading in relation to a $172 million joint venture with Chinese SOE Sinohydro on the development of a combined gas turbine cycle power plant in Kyaukphyu in Rakhine State.

Advising China Triumph International Engineering on the drafting, review and finalisation of its project agreements in relation to the development of a solar power plant in the Minbu district of Myanmar.

Represented MAPCO-Golden Lace on the disposal of its rice mill and power plant assets between Hong Kong-based conglomerate Wilmar and Riceland International.

Key clients

Digital Money Myanmar