The Myanmar government may grant permission to foreign banks to allow them to offer limited financial services in the country from 2014.

The move follows as part of a series of economic and political reforms in the country, enabling it to gradually open its banking sector to foreign banks.

A senior central bank officer was quoted by Reuters as saying that the government is also planning to allow foreign banks to open branches, so that they can offer financial services to people of Myanmar.

Additionally, the government is considering granting permission to establish joint ventures (JVs) with local banks, prior to allowing them to open independent branches, reported the news agency.

The central bank is currently preparing a plan, to accelerate the process of selection of foreign banks, which will start operations in 2014 in "certain areas of banking services".

"Since things have changed rapidly with the passage of time, we can’t afford to stick to something laid down about 20 years ago if we really want to carry out meaningful reforms."

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"The question is really how best to have them involved so you increase availability of credit, of financing, but also the local banks’ capacity is strengthened," the official added.

Currently, 34 international banks manage representative offices in the country, although their role is limited to offer advice to clients.