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Burma
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Economy

Economy - overview: Burma has a mixed economy with private activity dominant in agriculture, light industry, and transport, and with substantial state-controlled activity, mainly in energy, heavy industry, and the rice trade. Government policy in the last 11 years, 1989-99, has aimed at revitalizing the economy after three decades of tight central planning. Thus, private activity has markedly increased; foreign investment has been encouraged, so far with moderate success. State enterprises remain highly inefficient and privatization efforts have stalled. Published estimates of Burma's foreign trade are greatly understated because of the volume of black-market trade. A major ongoing problem is the failure to achieve monetary and fiscal stability. Burma remains a poor Asian country and living standards for the majority have not improved over the past decade. The short-term outlook is for continued sluggish growth because of poor government planning, internal unrest, minimal foreign investment, and the large trade deficit.

GDP: purchasing power parity - $59.4 billion (1999 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 4.6% (1999 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $1,200 (1999 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 59%
industry: 11%
services: 30% (1997 est.)

Population below poverty line: 23% (1997 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 38% (1999 est.)

Labor force: 19.7 million (FY98/99 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 65%, industry 10%, services 25% (1999 est.)

Unemployment rate: 7.1% (official FY97/98 est.)

Budget:
revenues: $7.9 billion
expenditures: $12.2 billion, including capital expenditures of $5.7 billion (FY96/97)

Industries: agricultural processing; textiles and footwear; wood and wood products; copper, tin, tungsten, iron; construction materials; pharmaceuticals; fertilizer

Industrial production growth rate: NA%

Electricity - production: 4.31 billion kWh (1998)

Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: 61.72%
hydro: 38.28%
nuclear: 0%
other: 0% (1998)

Electricity - consumption: 4.008 billion kWh (1998)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (1998)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (1998)

Agriculture - products: paddy rice, corn, oilseed, sugarcane, pulses; hardwood

Exports: $1.2 billion (1998)

Exports - commodities: pulses and beans, prawns, fish, rice; teak, opiates

Exports - partners: India 13%, China 11%, Singapore 10%, Thailand 8% (1998)

Imports: $2.5 billion (1998)

Imports - commodities: machinery, transport equipment, construction materials, food products

Imports - partners: Singapore 31%, Japan 12%, Thailand 12%, China 9%, Malaysia 8% (1998)

Debt - external: $5.9 billion (FY98/99 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: $99 million (FY98/99)

Currency: 1 kyat (K) = 100 pyas

Exchange rates: kyats (K) per US$1 - official rate - 6.2665 (January 2000), 6.2858 (1999), 6.3432 (1998), 6.2418 (1997), 5.9176 (1996), 5.6670 (1995); kyats (K) per US$1 - market exchange rate - 330 (yearend 1999)

Fiscal year: 1 April - 31 March



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