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South and Southeast Asia

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  • BEIJING— Global stocks were lackluster Friday after Japan reported mixed economic data and investors waited for revised U.S. growth figures. KEEPING SCORE: In early trading, France's CAC-40 was little changed at 4,911.03 and Germany's DAX gained 0.05 percent to 11,332.45. Britain's FTSE 100 was steady at 6,949.04.

  • *GM to stop car manufacturing in Indonesia. GM Indonesia to shutter assembly plant, axe 500 jobs. Feb 27- A day after announcing it is to stop making GM-branded cars in Indonesia, General Motors said on Friday it would cease production of its Chevrolet Sonic in Thailand by the middle of this year.

  • Asian imports of Iranian crude fall nearly 22 pct Friday, 27 Feb 2015 | 3:47 AM ET

    *Iran sales to Asia below 1 mln bpd in Jan, first time since Oct. *Cautious optimism on Iran's nuclear deal with West. Imports by Iran's four biggest buyers- China, India, Japan and South Korea- averaged 982,525 bpd last month, the first time the level had dropped below the 1 million bpd mark since October last year, government and trade data showed.

  • SIEM REAP, Cambodia— Cambodia's most popular tourist attraction— the complex of ancient temples that includes Angkor Wat— is suffering from a form of overexposure: At least five foreign visitors have been arrested and deported this year for taking nude photos at the sacred sites. "Angkor Wat is the most famous sacred... temple in Cambodia, where everyone— not only...

  • *GM to stop car manufacturing in Indonesia. BEIJING, Feb 26- General Motors will stop making GM-branded cars in Indonesia, a battleground for global automakers, closing an assembly plant, axing some 500 jobs and shifting its focus to sport utility vehicles. The retreat also comes as GM drives into Indonesia with its Chinese partner, SAIC Motor Corp..

  • Thai Airways plane hits turbulence, 11 on board injured Thursday, 26 Feb 2015 | 8:33 AM ET

    BANGKOK— A Thai Airways plane hit severe turbulence over Thailand that injured 11 people Thursday, the airline said. The Airbus A340-600 landed safely at its destination, Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi International Airport, according to airline President Jarumporn Chotikasathein. The extent of their injuries was unclear, and Thai Airways has not specified the...

  • Image of Asia: Improving India's crowded railway system Thursday, 26 Feb 2015 | 8:04 AM ET

    In this photo by Bikas Das, passengers hang from the doors of the coaches of a crowded local train on the outskirts of Kolkata, India. The railways budget unveiled Thursday by Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu envisions $137 billion being invested over the next five years to modernize trains and stations, improve safety and sanitation and expand the reach of the...

  • KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia— Southeast Asia's top budget carrier, AirAsia, said Thursday it suffered a net loss of 428.51 million ringgit in the quarter ending in December, hit by higher costs and a weaker currency. "We have seen the competition becoming more rational in the second half of 2014," AirAsia Chief Executive Tony Fernandes said in a statement.

  • NEW DELHI, Feb 26- India's government unveiled plans on Thursday to invest $137 billion in its decrepit rail network over the next five years, heralding Prime Minister Narendra Modi's aggressive approach to building infrastructure needed to unlock faster economic growth. Over the next year, India will increase investment by about a half to 1 trillion rupees...

  • KATHMANDU, Nepal— Nepal's government is close to extending the permits for individuals who had to abandon their attempts to climb Mount Everest after last year's deadly avalanche, a mountaineering official said Thursday. Katuwal said once the proposal is approved, the climbers affected by the 2014 cancellations would be able to return to Nepal and try to...

  • *GM to stop car manufacturing in Indonesia. BEIJING, Feb 26- General Motors is to stop making cars in Indonesia, a battleground for global automakers in emerging Southeast Asia, closing an assembly plant, axing some 500 jobs and shifting its branding focus to sport utility vehicles. GM tried to take on Japanese rivals by locally producing its Chevrolet Spin, a...

  • NEW DELHI, Feb 26- India will increase investment in its overloaded railway network to 8.5 trillion rupees over the next five years, the government said on Thursday, promising to modernise existing tracks but shying away from raising fares to fund the expansion. Presenting the railway budget just two days before the government delivers its first full annual...

  • TORONTO, Feb 25- Royal Bank of Canada, the country's top lender, posted a better-than-expected quarterly profit on Wednesday, driven by significant gains in its personal and commercial banking and capital markets businesses. RBC shares rose almost 3 percent to C $77.25 in Toronto, while National shares gained 2 percent to C $47.92. RBC's net income rose to C $2.46...

  • PARIS/ FRANKFURT, Feb 25- U.S. and British spies are likely to have hacked into SIM card maker Gemalto in an attempt to steal codes that protect the privacy of billions of mobile phone users, the company said, as it sought to downplay the impact and ruled out legal action. "The facts are hard to prove from a legal perspective and... the history of going after a state shows it...

  • TORONTO, Feb 25- Royal Bank of Canada, the country's top lender, posted a better-than-expected quarterly profit on Wednesday, driven by significant gains in its personal and commercial banking and capital markets businesses. The results could improve investor sentiment towards Canadian banks, which took a hit after Bank of Montreal, Canada's fourth-largest...

  • PARIS/ FRANKFURT, Feb 25- U.S. and British spies probably hacked into the world's biggest maker of phone SIM cards in an attempt to steal codes that protect the privacy of billions of mobile phone users, the company said on Wednesday. The Franco-Dutch firm, Gemalto, was responding to a report on an investigative news website that said the hack allowed the Britain's...

  • Feb 25- Royal Bank of Canada, the country's biggest lender, said quarterly net profit jumped 17 percent, helped by gains in its personal and commercial banking and capital markets businesses. Net income rose to C $2.46 billion or C $1.65 per share, in the first quarter ended Jan. 31 from C $2.09 billion, or C $1.38 per share, a year earlier. RBC said on Wednesday personal...

  • PARIS, Feb 25- Talks on the sale of 126 Rafale fighter jets to India are advancing, a French defence ministry spokesman said during a visit to India by Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian to salvage a deal stalled on the issue of local assembly of the aircraft. One major sticking point has been over who would be responsible for the manufacturers' guarantee on 108 of...

  • Canada's RBC reports higher first-quarter profit Wednesday, 25 Feb 2015 | 6:09 AM ET

    Net income rose to C $2.46 billion or C $1.65 per share, in the first quarter ended Jan. 31 from C $2.09 billion, or C $1.38 per share, a year earlier.

  • Overfishing driving slavery on Thailand's seafood boats Wednesday, 25 Feb 2015 | 5:19 AM ET

    SAMUT SAKHON, Thailand— Urine pools under a bed where an emaciated Burmese man lies wearing only a T-shirt and a diaper. He is just one of countless hidden casualties from the fishing industry in Thailand, the world's third-largest seafood exporter. The group estimates that up to half of all fish labeled a "product of Thailand" is sourced from outside its borders—...