Somewhere between Mon 1 Oct 2012 and Thu 28 Feb 2013

Branded credit cards to be launched in Myanmar

Branded credit cards are to be launched in Myanmar, a market that was until very recently dominated by cash transactions. The first credit cards are already in use in the country, and ATM machines were introduced earlier this year.

Myanmar's recent political and economic overhaul saw a number of reform steps that included loosening restrictions on the media and Internet and giving dissidents more freedom. Such actions have triggered renewed attention by foreign businesses to invest in the country.

Despite the fact that foreign banks are still not allowed to offer financial services, a large number have already opened offices in the country. The introduction of branded credit cards has been made possible via an agreement signed between Master Card Inc and Co-Operative Bank Limited, a domestic bank that operates 24 ATMs.

Several other businesses have announced their intentions to invest in the country including US soft drinks giant Coca Cola, which is set to arrive in Myanmar very soon.

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