Trade In Services

1.    In terms of trade, there are two parts: trade in goods and trade in services. Goods are materials which enable to perform functions and commercially interchangeable. However, service is something that cannot be seen or handled and it is intangible.
2.    Regarding with trading services, the World Trade Organization (WTO) has a General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) and the W-120 List in related to services sectors.
3.    The ASEAN Framework Agreement on Services -AFAS was signed on December 15, 1995. In order to implement this agreement, member states have negotiated the protocol and liberalized the market access of the specific services sectors. When Myanmar became a member state of ASEAN in 1997, since then, Myanmar has participated in those negotiations and the implementation of the framework agreement. Protocol to implement the Tenth Package of Commitments under the ASEAN Framework Agreement on Services – 10th AFAS Package was signed by ASEAN Member States on 11 November 2018 and as for Myanmar, Union Minister for Planning and Finance signed on 29 August 2018.
4.    Based on the ASEAN Framework Agreement on Service, since 1997, Myanmar has been liberalizing services sub-sectors up to tenth package and offering market access for 114 services sub-sectors i.e, 326 modes.
5.    The 10th package protocol is the final protocol for the current implementation of AFAS. However, it will be overwhelmed by ATISA in the future. The consolidated list of commitments in the 10th package will become Annex I of ATISA, and Annex II will be the reservation list for not liberalizing market access in services sectors.
6.    Therefore, Annex I must be the list of limitation as mentioned no less than those offered the market access up to the 10th Package in the previous AFAS. (For example, In AFAS, 70% Foreign Equity is allowed in the joint venture for Leasing and Rental services concerning pleasure and leisure equipment (CPC 83204). In Annex I of ATISA, foreign equity cannot be reduced to 60%. It must be the same 70% as AFAS.
7.    Moreover, Limitation on National Treatment must be described in Annex I.
8.    The sectors/ sub-sectors allowed for the market access are described with CPC codes published by UN.
9.    Trade in services related to domestic laws, rules, regulations, procedures, ASEAN FTAs and services matter can be studied in