ANA pressures Boeing on delayed Dreamliner
(TOKYO) The head of Japan’s All Nippon Airlines (ANA) has voiced ‘great disappointment’ at repeated delays by Boeing in delivering its hi-tech 787 Dreamliner, a report said yesterday.
Cathay jet makes emergency landing
(HONG KONG) Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd, Hong Kong’s biggest carrier, said one of its Boeing Co 747-400s made an emergency landing in Kazakhstan after pilots detected a cabin pressurisation system fault.
Volcano forces closure of Malang airport
(JAKARTA) Indonesia yesterday closed Malang city’s domestic airport as a volcano shot ash into the sky over eastern Java, posing a risk to planes, officials said.
Peru seeks direct flights to China, Japan and SKorea
(LIMA) Peru is negotiating agreements for direct flights to China, Japan and South Korea from 2011, Peruvian Trade and Tourism Minister Eduardo Ferreyros said on Sunday.
Istanbul plans to build a third airport costing US$5b
(ISTANBUL) A third airport to be built in Istanbul will cost around US$5 billion and have a capacity of at least 60 million people, Turkey’s Transport Minister Binali Yildirim said yesterday.
China’s surging gold demand calls for new investment tools
(SINGAPORE) Gold industry officials gather this week in Shanghai to seek ways to satisfy the fast-growing investment demand from China’s investors, as the country gears towards overtaking India as the world’s largest gold consumer.
China may sell more bills to soak up liquidity
(BEIJING) China may sell more bills to drain cash from the financial system as central bank data signals that the nation’s world-record US$2.65 trillion foreign-exchange reserves are climbing.
HK to face higher inflation next year, says John Tsang
(HONG KONG) Financial Secretary John Tsang said that Hong Kong will face higher inflation next year as it attracts more capital because of US monetary easing policies, and the appreciating Chinese yuan increases food costs.
Beijing sells aluminium from reserve at below market price
(SHANGHAI) China sold all the aluminium ingots it offered from the state reserve at below market prices, according to the result of a tender posted yesterday on the website of the National Development and Reform Commission.
Foreigners could soon sell shares in China
(BEIJING) Chinese officials have signalled that the country is getting closer to establishing a legal framework for an international board that would allow foreign companies to sell shares on the nation’s exchanges.
SGX to move Robusta coffee contracts to SGX-DT platform
THE Singapore Exchange (SGX) is taking steps to consolidate all commodities contracts on a single trading platform, starting with Robusta coffee contracts.
GLP’s Q2 profit triples to US$85.4m
STRONG investor sentiment towards Global Logistic Properties (GLP) is likely to continue, following the warehouse and logistic owner’s announcement that net profit for its second quarter more than tripled to US$85.4 million from a year ago.
Suntec Reit raises $418m from private placement
SUNTEC Real Estate Investment Trust (Suntec Reit) has raised net proceeds of $417.9 million from a private placement of new units, to partially fund its $1.5 billion purchase of properties at Marina Bay Financial Centre (MBFC).
SATS buys 50.7% of Japan caterer for 7.8b yen
SATS Ltd – via its wholly-owned subsidiary SATS Investments – is buying a 50.7 per cent stake in Japan-based airline caterer TFK Corporation (TFK) from Japan Airlines International Co Ltd (JALI) for 7.8 billion yen (S$122.6 million).
Office S-Reits will be fine, says Moody’s
OFFICE real estate investment trusts in Singapore (S-Reits) are losing tenants but they should face little trouble in finding new ones to fill the space, said Moody’s Investors Service.
Market eyes local rigbuilders and Petrobras tender
THE market held its breath with Sembcorp Marine yesterday, sending its share price into a mild funk during heavy trading.
HG Metal’s Q4 loss widens on inventory writedown
HG Metal Manufacturing widened its net loss for the fourth quarter due to a hefty $11.5 million writedown for its inventories.
Analyst sees few positives for telcos in 2011
LOW headroom for mobile growth, slower-than-expected progress with Singapore’s new broadband network, and changes resulting from the government’s new pay-television regime are likely to combine to take some lustre off historically favoured telecommunications counters in the coming year.
2 key M1 executives calling it quits
TWO members from M1′s 11-strong senior management team are calling it quits by the end of this year after spending more than a decade with Singapore’s smallest mobile operator.
GMG Global takes over Thai rubber producer
RUBBER producer GMG Global and its Thai joint venture, GP Sentosa Enterprises, have agreed to buy 55 per cent of loss-making Teck Bee Hang (TBH), a Thailand-based rubber producer and trader.
ITE Electric said it has reported several suspected fraudulent transactions worth about $277,000 to the police yesterday.
Strong yen has positive effect, says BOJ chief
(TOKYO) Bank of Japan governor Masaaki Shirakawa yesterday said that the strong currency could have a positive effect on the economy, despite complaints from exporters about the yen’s strength.
Surge in India’s bonds seen as deficit narrows
(NEW DELHI) India’s bonds are headed for the best month since May as a third consecutive quarter of economic growth above 8 per cent allows the government to cut its budget deficit and provide subsidies to commodity producers.
Spanish inflation rate slows to 2.2% in November
(MADRID) Spain’s annual inflation rate slowed to 2.2 per cent in November from a two-year high of 2.3 per cent a month earlier, official data showed yesterday.
Sweden notches record economic growth in Q3
(STOCKHOLM) Sweden’s economy expanded at a record pace in the third quarter, data showed yesterday, further widening the growth gap between the Nordic country and most of its European peers and boosting the case for near-term rate hikes.
Economic sentiment in Europe at 3-year high
(ZURICH) European confidence in the economic outlook improved to the highest in three years in November as Germany’s export-driven growth helped counter concerns that a spreading sovereign-debt crisis will hurt the recovery.
Moscow luxury home rents set to rise
(ST PETERSBURG) Moscow luxury-home rents will rise about 15 per cent next year as the expanding economy and a government plan to attract foreign technology companies fuels demand, Penny Lane Realty said.
British home prices fall for 5th month
(LONDON) UK house prices fell for a fifth month in November as demand for property dropped the most in almost two years, Hometrack Ltd said.
UK’s Warner Estate warns of weakening sector
(LONDON) British real estate asset manager Warner Estate Holdings said yesterday that investor sentiment in the property market had worsened as a result of economic uncertainties in the UK and eurozone.
Emaar not looking to bond market in near future
(DUBAI) The chairman of Emaar Properties, the United Arab Emirates’ largest listed property firm and builder of the world’s tallest tower, said yesterday the company had no intention of tapping the bond market again in 2010 or selling new shares in the company.
UK mortgage approvals slide to eight-month low in October
(LONDON) UK mortgage approvals fell to an eight- month low in October, a sign the slowdown in the property market is intensifying.
Non-landed private home prices fall 0.7% in October
PRICES of non-landed private homes fell 0.7 per cent in October, according to the monthly index compiled by the National University of Singapore (NUS).
Punggol Town Centre site up for bidding
THE Housing and Development Board (HDB) is launching a tender for a mixed commercial and residential site in Punggol Town Centre – the first site sale along the Punggol Waterway – and industry watchers expect the site to see healthy interest.
Asia Square to feature five-star Westin hotel
UPCOMING commercial development Asia Square will incorporate a 300,000 square foot, five-star business hotel, which will span 15 floors within one of its towers.
JTC hands out $900,000 of green initiative grants
JTC Corporation has awarded a total grant of $900,000 to fund three research projects which are aimed at improving the environmental sustainability of its industrial parks.
URA releases sales conditions for 2 industrial sites
THE Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) yesterday released the detailed sales conditions for two industrial sites: one at Kaki Bukit and another at Tuas View Square.
Indian execs to appear in court in bribery probe
(MUMBAI) Eight Indian financial executives were to appear at a special court hearing yesterday as part of an investigation into bribes and improper loan disbursements at the nation’s largest insurance company and some state-owned banks.
F&C Asset holds on to Indian stocks amid graft probes
(MUMBAI) F&C Asset Management plc, a UK fund that owns shares in India’s largest software services company and mortgage lender, is holding on to the investments because the companies will be sheltered from corruption probes that drove a three-week decline in the benchmark index.
Ratan Tata seeks gag order
(New Delhi) Ratan Tata, the chairman of India’s Tata Group, filed a petition in the country’s top court yesterday, seeking to amend a century-old law and stop phone conversations between him and the founder of a public relations company from being circulated.
Dubai’s US$1.5b sukuk needs to be rated
(KUALA LUMPUR) Dubai’s proposed sale of as much as US$1.5 billion of Islamic bonds in Malaysia won’t appeal to most local funds unless the emirate obtains a rating, according to Mashreq Capital DIFC Ltd and Nomura Asset Management Malaysia Sdn Bhd.
Consumer prices up 2% y-o-y in October
MALAYSIA’S consumer price index (CPI) rose 2 per cent in October from a year ago, up from the 1.8 per cent in September.
Dr M does an about-face over KL mega tower
(KUALA LUMPUR) Former Malaysian prime minister Mahathir Mohamad yesterday came out against government plans to build a 100-storey mega-tower in the capital, which have already sparked an outcry on Facebook.
MPA, Temasek Poly in fuel cell research tie-up
THE Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) and Temasek Polytechnic jointly launched a new maritime fuel cell research initiative, yesterday.
Turkish freighter survives pirate raid
(ANKARA) Pirates boarded a Turkish freighter in the Indian Ocean but abandoned the vessel after not being able to locate its crew who had hidden in a secret place, the authorities said in a news report on Sunday.
2 ships collide off Shandong; all rescued
(JINAN, China) All 49 sailors aboard two foreign cargo ships that collided in the sea off east China’s Shandong Province early yesterday have been rescued, Chinese maritime authorities said.
UN agency pushes for new security rules
(NEW YORK) The UN agency that oversees aviation is pushing new guidelines for cargo security to counter Al-Qaeda’s new mail-bomb strategy, but is stopping short of calling for 100 per cent screening of packages, as pilots and some US lawmakers have urged.
Prices mostly flat in thin trading
A QUIET session yesterday saw the Straits Times Index first drop 10 points in thin trading before a bounce in Hong Kong and a firm opening for Europe enabled it to finish at 3,158.21, for a net gain of just 0.13 of a point.
S’pore backs Cancun’s balanced package move with key caveat
SINGAPORE will be throwing its weight behind the ‘balanced package’ approach at the ongoing 16th Conference of the Parties of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP16) – with a key caveat.
Private sector’s bonuses and pay rise in sight
BONUSES and pay hikes are definitely back firmly on the agenda in the private sector, which is probably taking the cue from the civil service.
OSEA 2010 takes up record space
OSEA 2010, Asia’s oil and gas exhibition and conference will be the biggest one yet, taking up a record 25,000 square metres of exhibition space at Suntec Singapore – a 15 per cent increase from the last show in 2008.
Mahbubani makes the list of world’s top 100 thinkers
WARREN Buffett and Bill Gates have topped the Foreign Policy magazine list of ‘Top 100 Global Thinkers in 2010′.
JAC secures bank backing for debt financing package
JURONG Aromatics Corporation (JAC) has secured bank backing for its recently relaunched US$1.56 billion debt financing package, BT has learnt. And, with this final hurdle cleared, the consortium is set to begin building its mega US$2.4 billion petrochemicals complex on Jurong Island early next year.
EDBI buys stake in German water firm
EDB Investments (EDBI) has acquired a stake in Germany-based water treatment solutions company Triton Water, which will facilitate the company’s plans to establish a presence in South-east Asia.
Little Footies going places
SPENDING his days surrounded by the noise of overexcited toddlers was not what Lee Say Yeow had in mind when he was studying for his computer science degree. But, he has not looked back since deciding to leave his job with a bank to start his own preschool business.
Motivating talent and making sense of tax policies
I have very talented people in my team and would like them to grow with the company. What can I do?
PREVIOUS top Enterprise 50 (E50) winner Franklin Offshore Holdings will hold a one-day in-house exhibition on Dec 2 to showcase its research and development efforts, innovations, projects and services.
A matter of tracking and tracing
UNTIL the first quarter of this year, wooden pallet leasing company Kim Hiap Lee (KHL) faced a troublesome problem. Whenever the company leased out pallets – flat, wooden structures used to move goods – it rarely received the same number back.
Exploiting the potential of Western China
LOOKING down on hilly Chongqing, you might mistake the sprinkling of city lights – with Jialing River running through the city – for the night view of cosmopolitan Hong Kong, a city with similar terrain.
CURRENTLY, we do have some problems with foreign workers on S Passes. We have had a few S Pass employees working well with us. But the renewal of their S Pass was rejected.
Fixing SME financing gap
SMALL and medium enterprises are vital for economic growth and dynamism. They are not only important in terms of bringing innovative products, services and techniques to market
CleanTech One blazing a green trail
A CLUSTER of cleantech R&D, engineering, and headquarters activities will come together under one roof at CleanTech One once the building is completed in December 2011.
Trust through communication
ANYONE who has not been to China in the last six months should be automatically disqualified from commenting on the country, according to renowned architect Liu Thai Ker, a director at RSP Architects Planner & Engineers Pte Ltd.
New rule may weigh on prices of luxury condos
(SINGAPORE) The prices of luxury condos have continued to rise this year but a new rule may soon tie the hands of the developers.
Diplomatic nightmare as secrets come tumbling out
(SINGAPORE) When Google was forced to quit China in January due to hacker attacks, it created an uproar in the United States and elsewhere. An astonishing story behind those attacks has now emerged.
Economists raise S’pore’s growth forecasts for 2011
(SINGAPORE) With 2011 just a month away, several economists have raised their growth forecasts for the Singapore economy next year – to beyond the official forecast range in some cases.
Abhisit’s party survives dissolution case
THAI Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva’s ruling Democrat Party survived a controversial dissolution case yesterday, helping him avoid becoming the third leader forced out of office in the last three years.
A question of time for developers
BT’S ESTIMATES show that generally developers who bought sites through collective sales and other private sector sources in the 2006-2007 period are likely to have to complete their projects on them by 2014-2015, if they don’t wish to make hefty payments to the state for any time extension.
Top-tier personal income tax rate may go down
(SINGAPORE) The long- awaited cut in personal tax rates may be nigh, say some tax consultants, in light of the Prime Minister’s hints on Sunday of a generous 2011 Budget.
SG denies responsibility for client’s $8m losses
(SINGAPORE) The Singapore branch of Societe Generale Bank & Trust and its two former employees have disclaimed responsibility for costing a client nearly $8 million in losses through risky forex trades and then allegedly covering up the losses with bogus financial statements.
Euro falls as Irish bailout fails to convince markets
(BERLIN) The euro yesterday sank to a two-month low in a nervous first reaction to a multibillion-dollar bailout for Ireland that European governments hoped would steady the currency.
THE prices of luxury condos have continued to rise this year but a new rule may soon tie the hands of the developers.
Ireland’s band-aid bailout
A FINANCIAL crisis may have been averted in Ireland, but the fear of contagion remains very much alive in financial markets.
J-culture could be a recipe for ending deflation
MICHELIN just added to its roster of three-star eateries in Tokyo. More insights can be gleaned at the other end of Japan’s food scene: the bento.
Asia taking the lead in economic super-cycle
THE world economy is in a super-cycle. This is a period of historically high global growth, lasting a generation or more.
No end in sight to Ireland’s woes
HELD up as a model for development between 1995 and 2007, Ireland was the envy of many economies across Europe. Long the ‘poor relation’ of the European Union (EU), the country appeared to have turned an economic corner at the end of the 20th century.
Spain can’t afford to take risk of ‘de-euroising’
THE best thing about the Irish right now is that there are so few of them. By itself, Ireland can’t do all that much damage to Europe’s prospects.
ATTRACTIVE trading chances have appeared with the approach of December the month which had seen gains almost all the time.
Clarifications on the practice of internal auditing
WE refer to the article ‘Making internal audit more consistent’ (BT, Nov 15).
Foreign shares seem under-rated on SGX
I REFER to the article ‘FinaOne shares betray market mispricing’ (BT, Nov 26), which compares the current valuation of FinaOne, the largest SME financier in Taiwan which is listed on SGX, with that of the second-largest financier, Taiwan Acceptance, which is listed in Taiwan and trades at a whopping 2.9 times its book value.
Euro plunges as worries about contagion rule
(LONDON) The euro fell to two-month lows against the dollar yesterday as investors looked past a rescue package for Ireland to debt problems in other peripheral eurozone economies and sold the currency on any bounce.
Cardinal buys China drug distributor for US$470m
(NEW YORK) US drug wholesaler Cardinal Health Inc yesterday said it has bought a Chinese distributor for US$470 million, establishing a foothold in a booming pharmaceutical market.
Health care needs to be more efficient in hard times: OECD
(LONDON) Cash-strapped governments can no longer raise spending to improve health care at the breakneck pace of recent decades, so they must make systems more efficient to offer quality care at no extra cost, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) said yesterday.
UK sees sluggish economy; trims growth forecast
(LONDON) The British economy faces a ‘sluggish’ recovery in the medium term and will grow more slowly over the next two years than previously forecast, the Treasury’s fiscal watchdog said.
Holiday weekend sales in US increase 6.4%
(NEW YORK) The average shopper in the US spent 6.4 per cent more over Thanksgiving weekend than last year as more shoppers picked up jewellery and toys, heartened by the economic rebound.
Foreign inflows boost Asian bonds: ADB
in Tokyo ASIAN bond markets – especially corporate bonds in China, Indonesia and Singapore – are booming on the back of foreign capital pouring into the region in search of high returns, according to a report published yesterday by the Asian Development Bank (ADB).
Thai govt calls for creative economy
DEVELOPING countries can no longer rely on their own resources or cheap labour to succeed in today’s globalised world.
Nuclear industry faces dearth of skilled staff
(OLKILUOTO, Finland) On a flat, low-lying island nestled in crisp waters off the west coast of Finland, the first nuclear power plant ordered in Western Europe since 1986 is inching towards start-up.
Dubai Holding seeks extension on credit line
(DUBAI) Dubai Holding Commercial Operations Group LLC, a real estate and hospitality group owned by the emirate’s ruler, is seeking a one-month extension on a US$555 million revolving credit line to get more time to agree on new terms, two people with knowledge of the matter said.
‘Airplane!’, ‘Naked Gun’ star Leslie Nielsen dies at 84
(LOS ANGELES) Actor Leslie Nielsen had the sombre demeanour and stone-serious face that were just right for dramatic roles. They proved even better for comedy.
Wal-Mart to buy 51% of S Africa’s retailer
(JOHANNESBURG) Wal-Mart plans to buy a controlling stake in South African wholesaler Massmart for over US$2.0 billion after scaling back its offer for the company’s entire stock, Massmart said yesterday. ‘The total transaction is valued at approximately 17 billion rand (S$3.14 billion) for 51 per cent of Massmart,’ the company said in a statement.
Axa, AMP agree on control of Axa’s Asian unit
(PARIS) French insurer Axa said yesterday it had reached an agreement with Australian group AMP on control of Axa’s Asian unit Axa Asia Pacific Holdings (Axa APH). It said the accord had been unanimously backed by Axa APH independent directors.