YANGON -- When the National League for Democracy took power in Myanmar last year it inherited one of the world's fastest growing economies, but one still tangled in an arcane web of rules and regulations and in desperate need of modernization.
The law governing companies dated from the pre-1948 British colonial period. Customs procedures were still paper-based. Power cuts were rife, particularly during the hot season. The fragile banking system was in urgent need of stronger supervision. Much of that still holds true.
The enormity of the task facing the new government was matched by the huge expectations of voters, who gave the NLD a clear mandate for progress. The business community had more insight than most sectors of society about the magnitude of the economic reform task. But one year into the NLD's four-year term, many business leaders feel the results have been mixed, at best.
"Myanmar is a frontier economy with massive long-term growth potential and it is the government's duty to create a business environment to enable that progress," said Khin Maung Win, chairman of Myan Shwe Pyi Group, the exclusive dealer for Caterpillar construction equipment in Myanmar.