Dr. Soe Tun
Birth: 2 February 1972
Source of wealth: Farmer Auto
Address: No.220/A, Room 3-D, East Horse Racing Rd, Man Aung Ward, Tarmwe Tsp, YANGON
Business: Auto Showroom, Trading
Dr. Soe Tun entered the vehicle trading industry with Farmer Auto in 2012. He is currently working as the President of Myanmar Automobile Manufacturers and Distributor Association, an executive director of Myanmar Agrobusiness Public Corporation, CEO of Ayeyar Mittar Public and Myanmar Automobile Development Public.
“We need to set the firm policy which is acceptable by all the workers, the patrons and the investors.”
Dr. Soe Tun is from Pyay Township in Bago Region. He successfully completed his Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) at University of Medicine (2). As a fresher, he faced the 8888 Uprising in 1988 and demonstrated as a university activist, participating in e.g. mass demonstrations and public talks in front of Yangon General Hospital. Due to the 8888 Uprising, the universities closed for more than four years – and during this time Dr.Soe Tun started his business.
During this period, Dagon Satellite Town was implemented and land was marked into plots for government staff. Loans were issued for the building of houses – on the condition that land shall be confiscated if there is no construction on the plots. So, most of the lands were sold to third parties. Dr Soe Tun’s brother and friends, who were overseas since 1990, were among those who bought land and offered it to him to establish a construction enterprise. Thus, with encouragement from his brother, his career in business began during his first year of university student life.
When the universities reopened, his construction enterprise was halted and he enrolled to the university again. Throughout his student life, he ran a used-cars trading business. Due to his experiences, he obtains the business ideas. On completion of his degree, he worked as a doctor, a government staff person at the ministry and a teacher at the University of Medicine. While working at the Ministry, he gained an ADB-GSP Scholarship and continued to his Masters Degree and Ph.D. he earned his Ph.D from University of Phoenix, America and Masters Degree from University of Tokyo, Japan. He worked at the University of Community Health in Magwe Township before departing his medical career to pursue business interests.
Aside from construction, he set up Pann Tha Pyay in 2000 and imported and distributed agricultural products for over 12 years. In 2009, Myanmar Rice Industry Association (MRIA) was set up with founder members Chit Khine, Aung Than Oo and Ye` Min Aung. It was renamed as the Myanmar Rice Federation (MRF) in 2012 and Dr. Soe Tun acted as the general executive, Secretary General and vice-president of the association.
In 2011-12, Myanmar Farmers Association was established with the purpose of developing Myanmar’s rice industry, improvement of farmers’ lives and sponsorship for agriculture. Dr. Soe Tun was the first President of MFA and currently supports the association as the honorable President. He conducted field studies in the flooded areas and met with farmers to listen to their difficulties. He either directly supported or reported the situations to the government and private organisations for further help. In doing so, he gained the trust and respect of farmers. Myanmar Agribusiness Public (MAPCO), a company operated by MRF, was founded in 2012. Dr. Soe Tun was included in the Board of Directors and worked as an executive director. Aside from import of agricultural machinery and export of rice, he advocates for technical help to raise the rice export and agricultural sectors. Dr. Soe Tun is also involved in agriculture research and acted as the President of Community Research & Development Institute. Currently, he is serving as the President of Ayeyarmitta Public.
He is also a member of executive committee in Union Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (UMFCCI). He is in charge of making decision for rice market price, buying spare rice by the government, raising standards and protection for farmers’ rights. He also has to ensure the minimum price in the rice market does not fall below K0.5 million. With the coming of democracy, the government permitted car sole traders to run car showrooms legally. With an affordable car showrooms permit, Dr. Soe Tun opened Farmer Auto Car Showroom in 2012. In the early phases of launching car showrooms, their participation on media weekly programs attracted people’s interests.
Meanwhile, Central Bank of Myanmar permitted not only private banks but also private counters to trade dollars legally. After that, Dr Soe Tun opened Farmer Money Exchange Center in Yangon. Currently, Dr. Soe Tun is working as the chairman at Myanmar Automobile Manufacturers and Distributor Association (MAMDA). It was founded on 6 June 2013 by automobile distributors, offering a path between local entrepreneurs, government and buyers. MAMDA has also advised the government on automobile policies and permits.
Dr, Soe Tun has over 30 years’ experience in the diverse fields of construction, agriculture, import, rice export, monetary exchange and automobiles. He was a former committee member of Food Security Network Group (FSWG) and a member of Myanmar Private Sector Disaster Management. He is also the President of the Yangon Lions Club, and a general management executive at Intellectual Property Association, Myanmar.