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1998 BUSINESS TIMES, April 30

Signing of JV Agreement Between Stephen Hansford Petrolub and S.T.O. Maldives

STEPHEN Hansford Petroleum (M) Sdn Bhd, a petroleum-based lubricant product manufacturer, yesterday signed a joint venture agreement with S.T.O. Maldives (Singapore) Pte Ltd for the export of its products to Myanmar.

Under the two-year agreement signed yesterday, S.T.O Maldives, the wholly-owned subsidiary and trading arm of the State Trading Organisation of Maldives, will import the products from Stephen Hansford and export them to Myanmar.

Managing director of Stephen Hansford, Mr Stefan Chew, hopes the agreement will lead to the penetration of the Myanmar market in the next few years.

"The market in Myanmar for lubricant products is about US$ 6 million (US$RM3.77) a year. We hope to penetrate at least half of the market.

We will also look into other areas besides the trading of products. For example, we will see if we can start manufacturing the products there," Chew told reporters after the signing ceremony yesterday.

The signing was witnessed by Deputy Foreign Minister Datuk Leo Michael Toyad.

Stephen Hansford specialises in lubricant technology, but it is also involved in the production and marketing of household and consumer products.

Chew also said that Stephen Hansford's overseas efforts are starting to bear fruit in countries not only in the region (China, Hong Kong, Myanmar, Taiwan and Vietnam) as it will also implement projects in countries like New Zealand and Australia.

Meanwhile, managing director of the State Trading Organisation of the Maldives, Mr Mohamed Maniku said Maldives is seeking profitable international ventures.

'Maldives' economy has been highly dependent on tourism and seafood export industries.

"To accommodate its diversification efforts, the Maldives Government formed the State Trading Organisation about 13 months ago in Singapore as the international trade and investment arm of the country." he added.

The above news can be read vide

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