On August 3, 2018, Myanmar’s Directorate of Investment and Company Administration (DICA) issued an announcement enacting an anti-corruption code of ethics intended to prevent corruption in both public and private transactions.
The code of ethics prohibits all companies and bodies corporates incorporated under the Myanmar Companies Law (2017) from engaging in the following activities in the course of their business:
- Providing and offering, directly or indirectly, gifts, entertainment, and other preferential treatment;
- Providing, directly or indirectly, necessary assistance in travelling;
- Conferring, directly or indirectly, a financial advantage to get a business opportunity;
- Offering, directly or indirectly, charitable donations;
- Conferring, directly or indirectly, political contributions; and,
- Providing, directly or indirectly, assistance to get employment in companies or organizations for personal interest.
The announcement states that DICA “encourages all companies and body corporates … to respect and abide [by] the anti-corruption code of ethics.” While the extent to which this notification is strictly binding remains in question, and there are several ambiguities in the text that need to be resolved, it is clear that all Myanmar-incorporated entities should comply with the anti-corruption code of ethics, in all transactional dealings, with immediate effect.