JAKARTA (AP) Myanmar’s second-biggest mall is set to open its doors in Jakarta.
The Burmese mall is expected to open later this year in the upscale Jakarta Square Mall, Indonesia’s largest shopping center.
The Burmacs are an Asian-owned company with a vast retail empire and a $1.7 billion market value.
The mall was established in 1999 and has been operated by a group of Myanmar expatriates since 2008.
Its opening marks a milestone for Myanmar’s booming economy and the opening of the mall is a major boost for the Burmans economy, which is already struggling with a high rate of unemployment and a slowdown in foreign investment.
Burmese President Thein Sein made the announcement Monday (local time) in a statement on the Myanmar Government website.
“Myanmar is a country where the future of all of its people is linked to the future and not to their past,” he said.
“It is our great hope that the Burmans of Myanmar will become a true, modern and democratic society.”
The mall, located just steps from the Jakarta airport, is the largest mall in Indonesia, with over 1,600 shops.
It has an estimated total of 3 million square meters of space.
Its construction started in the early 2000s.
Burmans are a majority-Muslim nation, and the government has struggled to contain an insurgency and ethnic unrest that has killed more than 30,000 people since 2007.
More: Myanmar’s economy has been in recession for several years now.