East West Seed Myanmar


East West Seed Myanmar

Political / Economic / Social / Legal climate

  • Doing business ranking (trend)
    • EWS rented a 5 acre land, there is still no construction permit (after 9 months)
    • took 2.5 year to register a company
  • There are still significant reforms need to take place in economic and political arena. For foreign companies it is still pioneering to come to Myanmar.
  • Under developed seed limits agricultural productivity
  • Myanmar seed law has been drafted since 2000
    • repeatedly under review and revision.
    • recently been submitted to the Attorney General’s office for approval and enactment , also sent to UPOV
    • grants the protection to new plant varieties and encourages Research and breeding of new varieties
    • particularly in the private sector in line with Myanmar’s obligations under TRIP agreement
    • Farmers right to save, use, exchange, share and seeds for commercial purpose
  • Myanmar is not a member of UPOV (International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants)
    • Both public and private sector need strengthening in seed industry
    • Needs strong seed certification system and valid quality control system
    • Relevant government bodies focusing on the establishment of PVP system
  • EWS wants to put up a plant, sending seeds back to QA processing, etc to Bangkok is not a good idea (if there is production);land issue is critical in Myanmar, afraid that foreign companies will take over the country.
  • PVP / UPOV
  • Average age of farmers is 25-35; 55 million people (young generation) perfect for agric; there is so much business opportunity / EWThailand: at establishment there was no seed company, after 35 years the seed sector is developed. More than 50% of newly registered seed company in Thailand is previous staff of EW. This is how we transfer knowledge, it is ok. Healthy competition.

Vegetable sector is in infancy

  • Government has been focusing on the rice production to ensure food security
  • It is only recently that farmers can chose what they want to produce
  • Myanmar government policies regarding horticulture: historically focus on rice sector, one time leading exporter of rice in the world. Ag policies reflect that, food security crop; horticulture was deprioritised; rice was the focus to feed the population.
  • Freedom to cultivate any crop farmers want. Now farmers can choose what they grow; this has happened to recently. Mover from rice bowl to fruit basket. Vegetables are becoming a growing part of the diet.
  • It is a highly fragmented sector. Many small players; as vegetables moves through the chain, post-harvest loss is high, added value is not there, but players take profit at each trading point of chain. How to engage this market system?
  • Market linkages on output side are very challenging. Perishable products, speed of movement of transportation is essential. Vegetables in Myanmar are almost all domestic and fresh.
  • High price volatility
  • Potential
    • China / India close by – export will increase / that will have impact of the vegetable sector. The other areas is the processing industry would smooth volatility of the chain.
    • Introduction of high-value nice in the industry (hotel, tourism, high-value export) to identify the correct business model.

Business Case