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Myanmar Introduces Mandatory Disclosure of Beneficial Ownership of Companies

On 15 November 2019, Myanmar’s Directorate of Investment and Company Administration (“DICA”) issued a directive mandating the disclosure of beneficial ownership of companies in Myanmar (“Directive”). The Directive becomes effective on 1 January 2020.

In summary:

  • The Directive obligates Myanmar incorporated companies and other legal arrangements (trusts, joint ventures, partnerships, associations etc.) to obtain, and keep records of, information on their beneficial owners. The information (and presumably changes thereto) must also be submitted to DICA in a timely manner.
  • The Directive requires Myanmar companies to appoint certain authorised individuals to provide beneficial ownership information on their behalf, and such persons will be made accountable to DICA.
  • Records of the information must be kept for a period of 5 years from the time the company ceases to be a customer of a financial institution, or the time it ceases to exist.
  • Failure to comply with the Directive renders the company subject to certain penal sanctions under Myanmar’s anti-money laundering legislation.
  • Companies would be well advised to prepare for this new requirement as soon as possible given that it will come into force imminently.

Download the client alert below to learn more about the Directive and how it affects your business.