Following a significant increase in COVID-19 transmissions in recent weeks, the relevant Myanmar authorities have promptly issued additional notifications on top of existing directives to address the developing COVID-19 situation in Myanmar, notably on:
- Stay-at-home Orders affecting 7 Townships in Yangon; and
- Mandatory Quarantine and Testing for visitors/residents travelling to Nay Pyi Taw.
The restriction on stay-at-home orders may affect employees in the covered areas. The mandatory quarantine and testing requirements for visitors to Nay Pyi Taw may also affect company representatives who intend to meet in person with governmental agencies or regulatory bodies as they would have to be quarantined and tested. Companies are encouraged to make the necessary arrangements accordingly.
The authorities' response to the COVID-19 situation is developing rapidly in Myanmar and may be issued through national, regional or local governments. Businesses are encouraged to monitor any such announcements on a regular basis.
To recap, the Myanmar authorities have previously issued various directives and guidelines to restrict the spread of COVID-19 within the country. These include:
- Mandatory reporting of residents travelling back from Rakhine state after 10 August 2020
- Workplace compliance with the Ministry of Health and Sports ("MoHS") guidelines
- Extension of temporary entry restrictions for all visitors until 30 September 2020
- Nationwide curfew from 12:00 am to 4:00 a.m., effective since 15 May 2020
- No social gathering of 30 or more people, effective since 16 August 2020
With the recent widespread community transmissions across several states and regions including Yangon, the relevant authorities have now imposed additional restrictions of movement throughout selected areas in the country.
1. Stay at Home Orders for 7 Townships in Yangon
Issued: 1 September 2020
Effective: 8:00 a.m. on 2 September 2020
The MoHS has announced that the following townships in Yangon are required to stay at home:
- North Okkalapa
Persons affected in these townships are required to abide by the following guidelines:
- Remain at home except to travel to work at private or government workplaces.
- Only 1 person per household can go out for shopping of essential supplies.
- Only 2 persons per household can go to a hospital or clinic.
- Persons leaving their homes must have a mask at all times.
- Only vehicles having a special pass can travel to and from affected townships.
- Only 2 persons (including the driver) can be in the vehicle to travel for shopping and 3 persons (including the driver) can be in the vehicle to visit the hospital or clinic.
Exemptions from these guidelines require prior approval from the local ward authorities, and violators may be subject to penalty.
2. Stay-at-Home Orders for Rakhine State
Issued: 26 August 2020
Effective: Not stated; assumed to be effective immediately.
Conditions of the Stay-at-Home Orders are identical to item 1 above.
3. Mandatory Quarantine and Testing for visitors to Nay Pyi Taw
Issued: 1 September 2020
Effective: 2 September 2020
The Nay Pyi Taw Council has issued an announcement that all visitors entering and residents returning to Nay Pyi Taw will be subject to mandatory quarantine and swab testing for COVID-19. The quarantine periods differ between 1 and 14 days depending on the residency of the visitors or the travel history of the residents. The visitors/travelers will be permitted to enter Nay Pyi Taw only upon being tested negative on their swab tests. It is worthy to note that swab tests are payable for visitors who have not been invited to Nay Pyi Taw by union level organisations or ministries.
The situation in Myanmar remains fluid and we will continue to issue critical updates as they arise. There is a possibility that the above-mentioned regulations may be extended and/or amplified, in particular the limit on the number of people in social gatherings which, in hindsight, may have been relaxed too soon. Businesses should closely monitor further directives from the relevant authorities.