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CNBC Asia-Pacific Highlights

Antarctica Flights/Croydon Travel offering day-trip flights to Antarctica.

Think you can't visit Antarctica in a day? Think again as one company offers day tours onboard a 747.

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Manga, anime, J-pop – once it was all about Japan. But the country's cool factor may need a revamp amid intense competition from Korea.

Crowd by harbor in Uttar Pradesh, India at dawn

After a challenging year marked by slowing growth, speeding inflation, a major power blackout and the threat of a credit ratings downgrade to "junk," India can look forward to an "easier 2013," say economists at Deutsche Bank.

Mongolia

North Korean delegations to Mongolia are worth a second look. The GlobalPost reports.

Apple's rank in China's smartphone market, which is set to become the world's largest this year, fell to No.6 in the third quarter as it faces tougher competition from Chinese brands, according to research.

Samsung Galaxy S III smartphone

Samsung is likely accelerating the launch of its next-generation Galaxy smartphone- which may come with an unbreakable screen.

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China's new leaders do not officially assume their new posts until next March, but they're already on Forbes' Most Powerful People list. This may signal the growing clout of Asia's political figures in global affairs.

From the collapse of a global power to a surge in a stock price, several boom to bust observations have been made this year. Here is our list of eight.

As the prospect of the U.S. economy falling off a "fiscal cliff" looms large, keeping stock markets on edge, one technical analyst says falling off the "cliff" is likely to end up being a non-event for equities.

Wal-Mart signage is seen in the parking lot of the store in Mexico City, Mexico.

Wal-Mart entered India's supermarket sector in 2010 with a $100 million bet on a consultancy with no employees, no profits, and a scant $14,000 in revenue.

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Can eating too much sushi reduce your brain power? The GlobalPost reports.

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The United States may have the world's largest economy, but it does not even crack the top ten percent when it comes to a perceived lack of corruption, according to Transparency International.

From auto sales to health care to the NFL to the price of gasoline, CNBC's anchors, reporters, editors and contributors make calls on what 2013 will bring.

Pope Benedict XVI waves to the faithful as he arrives at the St. Peter's Basilica for a mass with newly appointed cardinals on November 25, 2012 in Vatican City, Vatican.

Pope Benedict's new handle on Twitter will be @pontifex, beating out other contenders that had been considered to showcase the thoughts of one of the world's most visible leaders.

Jakarta

Southeast Asia's largest economy is going to implement double-digit wage hikes next year which raises the question – Is the country's position as a hot spot for foreign investment under threat.

Hollywood, California

Dalian Wanda Group, the world's biggest owner of movie theaters, is in talks with Hollywood studios to co-produce films and is looking to buy and build hotels in U.S. cities as it eyes a $10 billion "soft power" spending spree.

Startup Village wants to help engineers develop 1,000 Internet and mobile companies in the next 10 years. It provides members with office space, guidance and a chance to hobnob with the stars of the tech industry.

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London-based Prudential PLC is riding the wave of demographic change occurring in emerging Asia, says CEO Tidjane Thiam.

Why the Dollar Is a Deal

The Indian rupee has tanked 13 percent since its peak in February, but one expert predicts it's in for a big turnaround.

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Newly middle-class Chinese are replacing the toddlers' traditional split pants with disposable diapers.

Chinese soldiers marching in front of the Forbidden City in Beijing, China.

Beijing's new passports claim the entire South China Sea. That hasn't exactly gone over well.

Is China Coming to a City Near You?

As more wealthy mainland China tourists flood Hong Kong looking to shop, its way of life is being challenged. The Christian Science Monitor reports.

Sri Lanka Monks Get 'Healthy' Menu For Alms

Sri Lanka's government is putting the island nation's Buddhist monks on a diet.

No Sushi for You: Japan Airlines to Serve KFC Meals

Welcome Colonel Sanders. Japan Airlines is rolling out KFC meals on flights to the U.S. and Europe.

Air New Zealand Unveils Giant Flying Hobbit

Call it something of a Hobbit fixation, but Air New Zealand has turned its newest aircraft into a flying billboard for the movie "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey." The GlobalPost reports.

Why Booming Indian Equities Will Rock in December

India’s stock market has brushed aside the country’s weak economic health this year and soared some 20 percent and investment strategists are betting on further gains for the benchmark Bombay Sensex, particularly in the month of December.

Is IPO Fever Returning to the Hong Kong Market?

After months of lackluster activity, the buzz is back in Hong Kong’s IPO market as several big companies prepare to list in this once hot destination for raising capital.

Are Two Cloud Servers Better Than One?

Cloud computing is fast becoming as ubiquitous as the clouds circling the Earth. As more and more people depend on “the cloud” to store sensitive data, they also realize it isn’t perfect —and sometimes it fails because of storm surges

10 Gifts Gadget Lovers Will Love 2012

What do people want for gifts? Cool stuff! Here are the 10 hottest gadgets retailers are stocking.

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The worsening outlook for the BRIC nations  – Brazil, Russia, India and China – has put into question whether these leading emerging economies can continue to power global growth.

Bass Kyle

Japan is about to join Europe in the debt crisis ranks, with the two regions offering the best opportunities for investors to bet against, hedge fund manager Kyle Bass said.