After decades of military rule, Myanmar, formerly Burma, is opening up to the West and hoping to follow Thailand’s original intent as a hub for tourism, expat businesses and possibly an expat retirement hub. However, progress to date has been slow, with most new expat arrivals unable to afford new-build condos.
A ground-breaking new law, enacted in January this year, allows expatriates taking up residence in the country to buy condo units. The law, loosely based on a similar law in Thailand, states that foreign residents may hold up to 40 per cent of apartments in condo buildings of no less than 20,00 square metres in total.
Myanmar’s construction industry hoped the law would open up the market for condos by sidelining distrust of construction firms, thus encouraging sales of condo units to expatriate workers. Unfortunately, it seems that, at present, the prices asked for the units are too high for the majority of expats.