As in other Asian countries, gold is a very popular investment and store of value for local entrepreneurs and regular people alike. In a country with an antiquated banking system, many people see gold as a very safe investment. Indeed, you will see people exchanging their salaries for gold earrings, necklaces and bracelets at Yangon’s many gold shops.
Myanmar has had an independent gold market for many decades which means that the gold price in Myanmar is not necessarily determined by international gold prices, and there can often be differences between prices in London and Yangon. Those looking to take advantage of these price differences will need to understand a few things about the Myanmar gold market.
The first is that it is very difficult to determine the purity of Myanmar gold. Strict standardization has never been implemented in Myanmar, meaning that purities can vary widely depending on the source.
The second is that it is illegal to export Myanmar gold, which means buying cheap gold in Myanmar and then exporting it to other countries is not an option for honest businesses. Even if you were able to export it, finding international buyers for impure and untested gold would be difficult.
Indeed a gold business is not a good option, but if you’re looking to buy Myanmar gold as a means of storing your wealth, you can do this quite easily. Gold in Myanmar is sold by the Kyat tha, which can either be bought in nuggets or in jewelry form. An advantage of the gold market in Myanmar is that it is very liquid – the shop you buy from will always buy your gold back.