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MGA’s Myanmar expansion plans on hold after military coup

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Australian broking group MGA has been forced to freeze plans to set up operations in Myanmar following political unrest in the South East Asian country.

Residents have taken to the streets in recent weeks to protest against a military coup which resulted in the detention of the country's elected leader, Aung San Suu Kyi.

About seven years ago MGA set up Cambodia operations, which have proved a huge success, and it was hoped further expansion in the region would follow, with Myanmar next on the list.

“We elected to move with Myanmar as we saw huge potential there,” MGA Chairman John George told today.

“We had travelled to the country four or five times and built relationships and set up a representative office there.

“The next step was to gain a broker licence and start placing insurance. We believed that was imminent.

“While we have not had any official notification that this will no longer be possible, we are disappointed with the turn of events and these plans are on the backburner for us now.”

Mr George says it’s hugely frustrating as years of work have been put into the project, and he feels for the Myanmar population.

“This could be stymied for who knows? Five or ten years? Industry was really starting to build and this has set the country back. We have friends over there and we feel very sorry for them.”