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South and Southeast Asia

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  • NEW DELHI, Jan 29- Indian state-run utility NTPC has restricted the building of three new solar power projects to domestic manufacturers, even as India pushes for overseas companies to lead fresh investments into a renewable energy drive. Modi wants foreign companies to lead $100 billion of fresh investment to raise India's solar energy capacity 33 times to...

  • NEW DELHI, Jan 29- New Delhi's transport department has written to U.S. taxi hailing company Uber Technologies Inc detailing problems with its application for a license in the city, further complicating the firm's ability to operate in India's capital. Uber's services have been banned since December in New Delhi, when one of its drivers was accused of raping a...

  • Civil aviation chief Azharuddin Abdul Rahman said the hunt for the Malaysia Airlines jet, which disappeared March 8, 2014, while flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 people, "remains a priority." The plane is believed to have crashed in the southern Indian Ocean, off the coast of western Australia. Malaysian Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai said the...

  • BANGKOK, Jan 29- Thailand's finance ministry again trimmed its growth forecasts for this year and the last on Thursday, when fresh factory output data provided more evidence that the economy remains wobbly. For 2014, whose full-year GDP growth rate will be announced on Feb. 16, the ministry reduced its projection to just 0.7 percent, from 1 percent in December.

  • JAKARTA, Indonesia— Indonesian investigators announced Thursday the co-pilot of the crashed AirAsia jet was in controls when he struggled to recover the aircraft as stall warnings sounded. The Airbus A320-200 crashed into the Java Sea Dec. 28, halfway from Indonesia's city of Surabaya to Singapore. All 162 people on board were killed.

  • By Yantoultra Ngui and Fransiska Nangoy KUALA LUMPUR/ JAKARTA, Jan 29- Indonesia narrowed the gap in car output with Thailand, Southeast Asia's automaking hub, to its smallest ever last year in percentage terms and is expected to overtake the Thai industry within a decade. Indonesia, Southeast Asia's largest economy, has already surpassed Thailand as the...

  • *2014 growth of 6.1 pct, second to China in Asia. MANILA, Jan 29- The Philippines rounded out 2014 as the fastest-growing economy in Asia after China, regaining momentum in the final quarter of the year on strong farm output and construction activity. "It validates our view that the most aggressive policy stance of the BSP based on our analysis for this year will be to...

  • MANILA, Philippines— A Philippine official says the country no longer deserves to be branded the "sick man of Asia" after its economy grew more than 6 percent for a third consecutive year. Hampered by natural disasters, growth of the $300 billion economy slowed to 6.1 percent in 2014, but still outpaced most other countries in Asia, officials said Thursday.

  • Philippine economic growth slows to 6.1 percent last year Wednesday, 28 Jan 2015 | 10:58 PM ET

    MANILA, Philippines— Philippine economic growth slowed to 6.1 percent last year, hampered by natural disasters, but still outpaced most other countries in Asia. Socio-Economic Planning Secretary Arsenio Balisacan said Thursday that the 2014 performance ranks the Philippines as the second fastest growing Asian country behind China, which posted 7.3...

  • *Q4 GDP expands 2.5 pct q/q, fastest quarterly pace in Asia. MANILA, Jan 29- The Philippine economy rebounded more strongly than expected in the final quarter of last year, posting the best growth in Asia after China on strong farm output and construction activity. Fourth quarter GDP grew a seasonally adjusted 2.5 percent over the prior three months, the best...

  • Why surprise parties are central banks' new thing Wednesday, 28 Jan 2015 | 5:39 PM ET

    After years of carefully telegraphing their outlooks to the market, central bankers are loosening up with surprise parties, with Singapore the latest to jump in.

  • Creating an old-girls network in Silicon Valley Wednesday, 28 Jan 2015 | 7:00 AM ET

    Jan 28- Thanks to Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg and her mega-bestselling book, Lean In, the gender-disparity debate has been front and center for years now in Silicon Valley. "Work your relationships," says Lisa Lambert, a VP with Intel Corp.' s venture-capital unit. She has launched a new chapter in Israel, and plans four more this year, in Bangalore; London; Austin, Texas;...

  • TEHRAN, Iran— A Washington Post journalist detained in Iran for months will stand trial "soon," the Islamic Republic's official news agency reported Wednesday. Rezaian, his wife, Yeganeh Salehi, and two photojournalists initially were detained July 22 in Iran's capital, Tehran. Iran does not recognize dual citizenships.

  • KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia— Civil aviation authorities in Malaysia will release a required report on the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 a day before the one-year anniversary, but it won't have any conclusion on what happened because the search is ongoing. The report to be released March 7 will focus on investigations into the search for the plane,...

  • BANGKOK, Jan 28- Thailand's central bank on Wednesday left its benchmark interest rate unchanged at 2.0 percent, a level that still "supports" a struggling economy that it asserted is improving. But a recent wave of monetary easing in the face of disinflation, including an unexpected move by Singapore early on Wednesday, created some uncertainty about the Thai...

  • Snails slither into spa scene in Thailand and around world Wednesday, 28 Jan 2015 | 12:52 AM ET

    CHIANG MAI, Thailand— The last time I encountered escargots they were served up by a French waiter, sizzling in garlic and herb butter. That this latest addition to the global beauty and wellness craze— snail facials— should surface in the hills of northern Thailand is only natural. The two young Thai women reclining next to me at Chiang Mai's Snail Spa sang the...

  • Singapore surprises with easing, clubbing currency Tuesday, 27 Jan 2015 | 10:59 PM ET

    Singapore's central bank surprised markets with a between-meeting easing amid nearly non-existent inflation, decking the city-state's currency.

  • President Barack Obama met with Saudi Arabia's King Salman on Tuesday to pay respects to the late King Abdullah and bolster a relationship that now stretches well beyond oil interests to security cooperation across the volatile Gulf Arab region. Saudi Arabia, the Middle East's top Sunni power, has been anxious over the possibility that the talks would lead to...

  • Democrats put brakes on Iran sanctions bill Tuesday, 27 Jan 2015 | 10:20 AM ET

    WASHINGTON— Senate Democrats on Tuesday put the brakes on new Iran sanctions legislation, ending for now a looming showdown between Congress and President Barack Obama over negotiations to prevent Tehran from having the capability to make a nuclear weapon. At the same time, supporters of the bill say the letter signals the White House that Menendez and his...

  • Higher F-35 jet demand boosts Lockheed Martin revenue Tuesday, 27 Jan 2015 | 7:44 AM ET

    Jan 27- Lockheed Martin Corp, the Pentagon's largest arms supplier, reported an 8.6 percent rise in quarterly revenue, helped by higher demand of its F-35 fighter jets. Revenue increased to $12.53 billion in the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31 from $11.53 billion a year earlier. Revenue at the company's aeronautics division increased 6 percent to $4.14 billion.