Cigarette sales on the Myanmar-India border have skyrocketed due to cheap prices and a growing demand from India. Cigarettes sales to Indian merchants hit 600 million kyats (US$645,000) within the first two months of the fiscal year 2013-14.
"This is the first time Indian merchants have purchased such a large amount of Myanmar cigarettes at Nanfarlon Market in Tamu Township," said a local trader at the Tamu Checkpoint on the Myanmar-India border.
Sales figures reached 185 million kyats in April and 422 million kyats in May. Over 154 tonnes of cigarettes were exported to India during the two months.
Jet, Paris, Peacock, Golden Elephant, and Ruili River are popular Myanmar cigarette brands among Indian buyers. Cigarettes are normally priced between 100 to 150 kyats ($0.10 – 0.15) a packet, but purchases are usually made in bulk, local traders said.
Indian merchants also buy betel and ginger in large amounts from the market, the traders added.
The total trade through Tamu Checkpoint on the Myanmar-India border amounted to US$3.32 million between April 1st and May 28th. Myanmar’s exports reached US$2.47 million while imports fetched US$0.84 million during the same period.
source: Eleven Myanmar