Today, the Myanmar Investment Commission (MIC) issued Notification 10/2017 (Notification) which has established which areas of Myanmar will be designated as Zone 1, regions that are least developed, Zone 2, regions that are moderately developed and Zone 3, regions that are adequately developed, under Section 75 of the Myanmar Investment Law 2016 (MIL).
This notification is of great significance to future MIC investment, because of the effect it will have on the available income tax exemptions in the relevant areas, as follows:
- Zone 1 potentially 7 consecutive years income tax exemption;
- Zone 2 potentially 5 consecutive years income tax exemption; and
- Zone 3 potentially 3 consecutive years exemption.
It is to be noted that the income tax exemptions differ from the previous, mandatory 5 year income tax exemption under the Foreign Investment Law 2012 (now repealed and replaced by the MIL). Even if the investment is located in a particular zone, there is no guarantee of the income tax exemption – Section 75 (c) of the MIL expressly states that income tax exemptions will only be granted in promoted sectors. It is not yet known what such promoted sectors are, although they are expected to include manufacturing; infrastructure development; agriculture and food processing.
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