10 November 2006 03:01 [Source: ICIS news]
Rumsfeld’s exit triggers concern in Tokyo
Reacting to the sudden resignation of US Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, ?xml:namespace>
While Rumsfeld’s departure prompted officials in
Ministry to tighten controls on 30 more drugs
The health ministry Thursday decided to impose tight restrictions on 30 drugs, including those sold as “Rush” and “Ecstasy,” in another step to eradicate the problem of uncontrolled mind-altering substances.
The 30 drugs will be placed on the list of “designated drugs,” which cannot be imported, produced, sold or advertised in
Business & Industry
‘07 tax revenue expected to exceed Y50,000bn
The economic recovery is expected to push national tax revenue in fiscal 2007 above 50,000bn Japanese yen (Y) ($425.1bn/€331.1bn) for the first time in seven years, government sources said.
The expected increase in central government revenue will come mainly from corporate income tax, with companies registering strongly improved earnings.
Toyota Motor has formed an alliance with Isuzu Motors, positioning diesel engines as a pillar of next-generation environmental technologies.
Under the alliance announced on Tuesday,
Sino-Russian energy ties set to surge
The agreement between State Grid Corporation of
Jobless urbanites to hit 10m by 2010
About 10m urban residents will have difficulty finding jobs by 2010 due to pressure from the growing labour force, according to a new report.
In a 2006-10 development outline published late Wednesday, the Ministry of Labour and Social Security said
Business & Industry
Ports handling capacity to top 5.5b tons in 2006
The handling capacity of Chinese ports will grow 18% to 5.5bn tons by the end of this year, said Minister of Communications Xu Zuyuan on Wednesday.
These ports are expected to handle 94 million TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent units) this year, up 24% over 2005, said the minister at a national navigation industry meeting held in
Listed companies expected to see net profits grow 30%
The net profit of
DPP pushes for nation to take positive step
Several Democratic Progressive Party heavyweights yesterday called on the nation to move on and do something positive after some members questioned the party’s decision a day earlier to back President Chen Shui-bian. Ker Chien-ming, convener of the ruling DPP legislative caucus, said he hoped all members could set aside their different opinions now that party headquarters has decided to throw its support behind the president.
Taiwan congratulates Dr Chan
Taiwan congratulates China’s Dr Margaret Chan on her appointment to the post of World Health Organisation chief and hopes the Hong Kong native would treat Taiwan’s continual bid to enter the health body with impartiality and fairness, said the country's top health officials yesterday.
Business & Industry
New bill loosens policy on cross-strait business
The legislation drew sharp criticism from the Mainland Affairs Council which warned such a move could jeopardise the government’s supervision of the sector and subject investors to unfathomable risk.
TIER predicts economic growth to reach 4%
President of TIER David Hong said that the nation’s business climate has improved this year, mainly due to strong demands for exports. He said that this year’s trade surplus is expected to reach $19.8bn (€15.4bn).
Central bank stands pat on interest rate
Defying political pressures and claims that an immediate rate hike may be needed to absorb excessive liquidity, the Bank of Korea yesterday kept the interest rate untouched at 4.5%.
It is the third straight time the central bank has frozen the overnight call rate after boosting it to a five-year high in August. The central bank’s decision was widely anticipated because of slower economic growth and moderate inflationary pressures.
Roh willing to discuss neutral Cabinet with political parties
President Roh Moo-hyun is willing to form a nonpartisan Cabinet in response to mounting calls from political parties for drastic change in the government lineup, a government spokesman said yesterday.
As a condition for opening discussion on the issue, Cheong Wa Dae demanded that rival parties cooperate in legislating key bills and reaching an agreement on the principles of the Cabinet overhaul. The main opposition Grand National Party immediately spurned the offer.
Business & Industry
Consumer sentiment dips in October
The consumer confidence index fell to 93.9 in October as
The National Statistical Office said yesterday the consumer expectation index, which measures the views of consumers on economic conditions over the next six months, dropped 0.9 point from September.
Businesses press parliament over legislation
With parliamentary deliberation set to begin on key legislative bills next week, five major business organisations yesterday urged the National Assembly to give their positions.
The business groups held a meeting with senior parliamentary policy counsels to discuss the legislation of business-related bills, including one aimed at allowing parliament a greater say in free trade negotiations.
Nissan whittles Maruti pact
Japanese carmaker Nissan has called off talks with Maruti Udyog to set up a plant in the country for manufacturing 200,000 cars a year. Instead, it will join the alliance between Mumbai-based Mahindra and Mahindra and
However, Nissan remains committed to the deal signed with Maruti, under which
'Future of commerce is online'
The World Wide Web is growing at a scorching pace with the number of applications, websites and users growing daily. However, a lot needs to be done since most transactions are still not digital.
“Most of the transactions are still in analogue mode, and there is a lot more work to be done. The magic of the Internet will increase when all transactions become digital. This will result in a spurt in e-commerce”" said Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, while delivering his keynote address at IndiMIX '06 - Microsoft
Companies & Industry
Reliance banks on oil, gas to drive growth
The oil and gas business is expected to emerge as a growth driver of Reliance Industries, which aims to garner over 4,000bn Indian rupees (Rs) ($89.9bn/€70bn) from this business in two years.
Reliance Industries, which on Thursday approved the mobilisation of $2bn (nearly Rs900m through syndicated loan or issue of foreign currency convertible bonds, aims to produce 450,000 barrels of oil a day in 2008-09.
Novartis, AP ink pact for healthcare IT
Global pharmaceutical major Novartis on Thursday signed an MoU with the Andhra Pradesh government for setting up a healthcare-related IT, ITeS and R&D facility with an investment of up to Rs5bn near
The state government will provide 150 acres of land to the company, which is aiming at augmenting and expanding its back-end operations in
Taken together, the two reports sent mixed signals on the
Front page (print edition)
Citibank first with biometric payment
Pay with your finger. That is what Citibank will offer credit and debit card customers in
The service, launched on Wednesday at popular Zouk night-spot, promises convenience and security, and is likely to be applied eventually to a range of other transactions.
Dr Mahathir hospitalised after mild heart attack
Former Malaysian prime minister Mahathir Mohamad, 81, was admitted yesterday to
On Wednesday, Dr Mahathir returned to
The World Trade Organisation (WTO) accepted
Muslim leader confident of South solution
Top Muslim cleric Sawas Sumalayasak, known as the Chularatchamontri, said today he trusted the military-backed government, and its decision to re-establish the Southern Border Provinces Administrative Centre is a major step in resolving the southern unrest through reconciliation.
The spiritual leader of all Thai Muslims, Mr Sawas appeared optimistic despite rising violence in the South as insurgents planted bombs at eight car showrooms today, hurting at least 10 people.
Business & Industry
Index up but gains may be limited
Thai consumer confidence rose for the second straight month to a seven-month high in October, due to steady drop in oil prices and easing political uncertainties, according to a monthly survey by the University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce.
But university economists still expect the closely watched index to remain below the benchmark of 100 for the rest of the year. They cite lingering concerns about the cost of living following heavier-than-usual floods, high interest rates and continuing unrest in the South.
IPO price set for UKEM
Union Petrochemical (UKEM), a distributor of solvents for petrochemical products, has priced its initial public offering shares at 2.52 Thai baht (Bt) ($0.06/€0.05) each, according to vice-president Peerajet Suwannapasri.
The company will sell 34m new shares, accounting for 20.61% of its capital, at Bt1 par value, from Monday to Wednesday. The shares will be listed on the Market for Alternative Investment (MAI) on 27 November
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