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Myanmar parliament sends foreign investment law for president's review

YANGON -- Myanmar's parliament passed a long-delayed foreign investment law on Friday and it has now gone back to the president, who has the final say and had resisted certain changes proposed earlier by lawmakers.

“It was passed today,” lower house lawmaker Thein Nyunt told Reuters.

He said one big change was the dropping of a proposed requirement for foreign investors to put US$5 million in start-up capital when setting up joint ventures with local partners.

Foreign firms are lining up to get into Myanmar, which has opened up fast since a military regime gave way to the quasi-civilian government of President Thein Sein 18 months ago. His reforms have led Western countries to lift or suspend sanctions.

However, most firms are waiting to see details of the investment law, which has been held up in parliament for five months as proposed changes have gone back and forth between the assembly and the president's office.

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