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How Business Disputes Turn Into Criminal Cases: Investors Beware?

Breakfast Briefing @ Office

In Myanmar, it is not uncommon for parties to a commercial dispute to initiate criminal action in order to pressure the opponent to reach a favourable settlement. Offences such as fraud, larceny, theft, cheating, breach of trust are crimes often used or abused in the commercial dispute.

In this program, we will be reviewing on actual cases, discussing the actions that could trigger criminal liability and the available protective measures to minimize potential criminal liability in commercial disputes in Myanmar.


  • Breach of confidentiality in a business deal: how to attack or defend?
  • What is the criminal context of distributing goods which are not performing properly?
  • Posting information on Facebook or other social media
  • What are the commonly used crimes in commercial dispute?
  • Removing goods and access to premises
  • Shareholders defaulting on obligation to contribute capital: can this be a criminal case?
  • Importing goods differs from import license
  • Signing a contract which is not performed as agreed
  • Holding on to your employer’s papers or phone while waiting for severance payment
  • Uncovered cheque as guarantee
  • Could unpaid invoices lead to a criminal case?
  • What actions could trigger criminal liability?
  • How can foreign investors minimize criminal liability?


TIMEHow Business Disputes Turn Into Criminal Cases: Investors Beware?
18.30am – 9.00amRegistration
29.00am – 9.15amOverview of criminal proceedings in Myanmar
– From investigation to criminal court: how is the process?
39.15am – 9.45amCriminalization of commercial dispute
– What infractions are often misused in a commercial dispute?
– Actions that can trigger criminal liability in Myanmar
49.45am – 10.15amCase studies
– Review of actual court cases
510.15am – 10.30amAvailable measures for foreign investors to minimize criminal liability


Edwin Vanderbruggen
Senior Partner

Edwin is the senior partner of VDB Loi and a leading foreign legal advisor living in Myanmar since 2012. A frequent advisor to the Government on transactions and privatizations in energy, transportation and telecom, he is widely recognized for his “vast knowledge” (Legal 500) and his ability “to get difficult things through the bureaucracy ” (Chambers, 2016). He advises international financial institutions on their largest Myanmar transactions, oil and gas supermajors, a greenfield multi- billion US$ telecom project and the Japanese Government on the Thilawa SEZ. He assisted two newly licensed foreign banks setup in Myanmar, acted for the sponsor of an 800MUS$ urban infrastructure PPP project and worked on 6 out of 7 power deals inked in 2016.

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May 9, 2019
08.30am to 10.30am
VDB Loi Office, 10th Floor, Junction City Office Tower, Yangon