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Asia-Pacific News Southeast Asia

  • JAKARTA, Indonesia— Japan's Softbank and China's top ride-hailing firm Didi Chuxing are pouring $2 billion into the latest round of financing by cash-hungry Southeast Asian taxi app Grab. Grab is seeking to dominate the market for car and motorbike hailing in Southeast Asia, where it competes with traditional taxis and rival apps such as Uber.

  • KUALA LUMPUR, July 24- The International Monetary Fund on Monday kept its growth forecasts for the world economy unchanged for this year and next, although it slightly revised up growth expectations for the eurozone and China. In its updated World Economic Outlook, the IMF said global gross domestic product would be 3.5 percent in 2017 and 3.6 percent in 2018.

  • Governments of the two countries have pushed ahead with "good reforms," says Jalil Rasheed, Invesco's investment director.

  • MUMBAI, July 21- India's edible oil imports are set to fall for the first time in six years as a surge in local oilseed output cuts into overseas purchases, but intake needs to fall further to fortify the health of the market, the head of a leading importer said. The lower purchases by the world's biggest importer of vegetable oils come amid a 13 percent run-off in...

  • NEW DELHI, July 22- The state government in India's capital told Philip Morris International Inc and other tobacco companies on Saturday to remove all advertisements from tobacco shops in the city, warning them of legal action if they do not comply. The order, sent by Delhi state's chief tobacco control officer S. K. Arora, comes days after Reuters reported that...

  • HOUSTON/ WASHINGTON, July 21- The United States is considering financial sanctions on Venezuela that would halt dollar payments for the country's oil, according to a senior White House official and an adviser with direct knowledge of the discussions. Sanctions prohibiting any transaction in U.S. currency by Venezuela's state-run oil firm, PDVSA, are among the...

  • JAKARTA/ TORONTO, July 21- An estimated 5,000 workers at the giant Grasberg copper mine operated by Freeport-McMoRan Inc's Indonesian unit will extend their strike for a fourth month, a union official said on Friday, in an ongoing dispute over layoffs and employment terms. The escalating labor issue comes as Freeport, the world's largest publicly traded copper...

  • MUMBAI, July 21- India's disruptive new mobile entrant Reliance Jio, backed by the country's richest man Mukesh Ambani, unveiled a low-cost 4 G-enabled phone on Friday to woo tens of millions of new customers, further destabilising established telecoms players. Despite Jio's rapid rise, funded by mega-profits churned out by parent Reliance Industries' core...

  • There was the Porsche, and then the Mini Cooper for his girlfriend. But according to the U.S. Justice Department, he was the mastermind of AlphaBay, an internet marketplace that traded in illegal drugs, firearms and counterfeit goods. On Thursday, U.S. Justice Department officials gave details of the global police operation that brought down Cazes, who...

  • MUMBAI, July 21- India's disruptive new telecom entrant Reliance Jio, backed by the country's richest man Mukesh Ambani, unveiled a low-cost 4 G-enabled phone on Friday to woo tens of millions of new clients, further destabilising legacy telecom players. Jio has enjoyed a meteoric rise since its launch a year ago, with its months of free services and sharply...

  • MUMBAI, July 21- India's edible oil imports are set to fall for the first time in six years as a surge in local oilseed output cuts into overseas purchases, but intake needs to fall further to fortify the health of the market, the head of a leading importer said. The lower purchases by the world's biggest importer of vegetable oils come amid a 13 percent run-off in...

  • *Dispute highlights wider concerns over pollution in Vietnam. HANOI, July 21- Vietnamese villagers blockading a textile plant that serves global fashion brands are seeking the permanent closure of the factory due to pollution concerns, highlighting a growing readiness in Vietnam to campaign over environmental issues. The blockade marks another challenge...

  • HOUSTON— In an innovative blow to illicit internet commerce, cyberpolice shut down the world's leading "darknet" marketplace— then quietly seized a second bazaar to amass intelligence on illicit drug merchants and buyers. AlphaBay, formerly the internet's largest darknet site, had already gone offline July 5 with the arrest in Thailand of its alleged creator...

  • A Reuters analysis of India's power output data shows over 50 coal- and gas-fired power plants in India are largely mothballed, or operating at a bare minimum. After steel, power firms make up the second-biggest portion of India's $150 billion mountain of bad debts. Last month, the central bank ordered commercial banks- the main financiers of infrastructure...

  • DUBAI, July 20- Kuwait ordered the expulsion of the Iranian ambassador and 14 other diplomats for alleged links to a "spy and terror" cell, Iranian and Kuwaiti media reported on Thursday, worsening an unusual public dispute between the two countries. Kuwait also told Iran's cultural and military missions to shut down, following a court case that increased...

  • HOUSTON— In an innovative blow to illicit internet commerce, cyberpolice shut down the world's leading "darknet" marketplace— then quietly seized a second bazaar to amass intelligence on illicit drug merchants and buyers. AlphaBay, formerly the internet's largest darknet site, had already gone offline July 5 with the arrest in Thailand of its alleged creator...

  • BEIJING/ MANILA, July 20- China's reform of its vast corn sector is spurring a rapid revival of cheaper high-fructose corn syrup, putting it on a collision course with Asian sugar producers in a battle for the lucrative sweetener market. China's producers have also found willing buyers abroad. "HFCS is changing the structure of the sugar industry in China and...

  • BANGKOK, July 20- Thailand's state-owned oil and gas giant PTT Plc is considering taking a stake in a natural gas liquefaction plant to be built in Malaysia, a company spokesman said on Thursday. PTT's board will on Friday consider the project, to be built with Malaysia's Petronas, making a decision on the size of any potential stake, the spokesman added.

  • DILI, East Timor— Almost two dozen parties are contesting parliamentary elections in East Timor this weekend that are likely to return independence heroes to power despite frustration in the young democracy with lack of economic progress and warnings the country could be bankrupt within a decade. But the current cast of leaders, whose popularity owes much to...

  • MANILA, Philippines— Stronger-than-expected export demand has improved growth prospects for Asia's developing economies, including China, the Asian Development Bank said Thursday. "Developing Asia is off to a good start this year with improved exports pushing growth prospects for the rest of 2017," said ADB's chief economist Yasuyuki Sawada.