Economically, Myanmar has demonstrated considerable competence in recent years. The country has consistently maintained sufficient growth over the previous 20 years to move up one income band—a feat achieved by only 18 of the 91 economies examined. Such growth has delivered significant benefits to citizens—for instance, GDP per capita rose from $270 to $1,484 over the period—and established Myanmar as a lower-middle-income country. Recent reforms have further accelerated economic development, with GDP growing at 7.2 percent a year between 2012 and 2017, and foreign direct investment (FDI) by 49 percent a year.
Maintaining Myanmar’s recent economic momentum, however, will require overcoming challenges both old and new.