Asia Pacific

Headlines

South Korea: Making up for lost time

After the impeachment of South Korea’s former president, Park Geun-hye, amid a far-reaching corruption scandal, the country was ready for change. South Korea’s new liberal president, Moon Jae-in, appears set to take on that challenge. Campaigning on a policy platform of job creation, corporate governance and labour market reforms, as well as promises...

Alibaba acquires majority stake In Indian ticketing startup TicketNew

Alibaba Pictures, the entertainment unit of China’s ecommerce major Alibaba Group, has acquired a majority stake in Chennai-based TicketNew for an undisclosed amount. Post-acquisition, Alibaba will have four representatives on TicketNew’s board and the firm’s promoters will have two of their representatives. TicketNew founder and CEO Ramkumar...

NIO unveils production vehicle for China Market

NIO unveiled new production vehicle, the NIO ES8, a 7-seater high-performance electric SUV for the China market - NIO ES8’s official launch will take place at the end of this year, with deliveries expected to begin next year - NIO to begin taking pre-orders of its flagship supercar, the NIO EP9, priced at 1.48 million USD - 11 Cars: NIO showcased...

X-ELIO closes the financing process for two new photovoltaic plants in Japan

The group achieves the necessary funds for the start-up of two new solar parks in Japan: Tsurusu and Shiroishi.Both PV power stations will be located at Miyagi Prefecture. Tsurusu Park will have a capacity of 38 MW and Shiroishi will reach 28 MW.The plants are expected to start producing energy in the second half of 2018.With both parks, the X-ELIO...

Hindalco raises ₹3,350 crore via QIP

Hindalco Industries, an Aditya Birla group company, has raised ₹3,350 crore through issue of shares under qualified institutional placement, largely to pay back high-cost debt and invest in value-added aluminium and copper products. The capital-raising committee of the company’s board met here on Thursday and approved the proposal to allot 17.68...

Finance

India’s raucous democracy is becoming more subdued

THE candidate that India’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has put forward for the largely ceremonial post of president looks like a canny choice: Ram Nath Kovind, a longtime devotee of a Hindu group allied with the party, but also a dalit—the bottom rung in India’s caste system. He should appeal both to the party’s religiously motivated...

Mongolians prepare to elect a new president

ADDRESSING more than 3,000 supporters in a packed arena five days before the first round of Mongolia’s presidential election on June 26th, Khaltmaa Battulga, the Democratic Party (DP) nominee, promised the things candidates everywhere tend to promise: modern infrastructure, better jobs and restored national pride. Other pledges were more specific...

The outrageous death of Otto Warmbier complicates American policy on North Korea

North Korea’s idea of humanitarianism “HOW safe is it? Extremely safe!” So read the guidance for North Korea on the website of a Chinese travel company when Otto Warmbier, a 21-year-old American student, signed up for a five-day trip in December 2015. Mr Warmbier was arrested the next month at the airport in Pyongyang, as he was leaving, and...

One country in Asia has embraced same-sex marriage. Where’s next?

LET’S hear it for Taiwan. Late last month its highest court ruled that the law allowing marriage only between a man and a woman was invalid. Sexual orientation, it said, is “an immutable characteristic that is resistant to change”—rebutting a widespread view across Asia that homosexuality is a curable disease. Barring same-sex couples from...

Japan’s government is in two minds about smoking

TARO ASO, Japan’s finance minister, is a seasoned champion of the political gaffe. Among his most notorious observations was that health costs could be cut if elderly people would just hurry up and die. Even by that standard, however, the doubts he has expressed about the link between cigarettes and lung cancer have raised eyebrows. Mr Aso’s...

Legal

'Evolutionary' NEC4 construction contracts now available for use

NEC4 incorporates updated versions of the contracts that made up the previous suite, NEC3. It also introduces two new contracts in response to industry feedback: an NEC4 Alliance Contract (ALC), which will be published for consultation shortly; and an NEC4 Design, Build and Operate contract (DBO), which is now available for use, as well as two new subcontract...

MSPs condemn government approach to freedom of information

The motion was put forward by Conservative MSP Edward Mountain."I started campaigning to become an MSP in 2010, and one of my reasons for doing so was that, like many others in the chamber and across Scotland, I felt that politicians seemed remote, unapproachable and secretive. Countering those traits remains one of my key drivers, and that is what...

FCA puts forward new rules for advising on transfers of 'safeguarded' pension benefits

[unable to retrieve full-text content]New financial advice requirements where a consumer is seeking to transfer 'safeguarded' pension benefits have been published for consultation by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).Read More

Wind turbine planning permission ignored likely effect on nearby church, Court of Appeal rules

Under section 66 of the 1990 Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act, local planning authorities (LPAs) must have "special regard to the desirability" of preserving the setting of a listed building. While Powys County Council could still have granted planning permission after considering the turbine's impact on the church, the fact that...

Government to deliver on housing pledges, Queen's Speech confirms

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Reforms to deliver more affordable housing will be taken forward in the current parliamentary session, the government has confirmed.Read More

Deals

Four of the five largest private equity funds are in Asia

At a time when a record number of private equity (PE) funds are seeking capital from investors around the world, Asia is emerging as a hotbed of PE activity, and this is reflected from the fact that three of the five largest funds on the road to raise capital at the end of first quarter this year focus on this continent.Again, of the five largest...

Japan dominates Asia-Pacific outbound M&A for Q1

Japan’s continued hunt for growth pushed it to the top of the Asia-Pacific region for outbound deal value during the first quarter of 2017, knocking China from its top spot as Chinese buyers face their own regulatory and political challenges, experts say. The first quarter of the year saw Japanese buyers ink $14.72 billion in transaction value...

Chinese capital constraints send shock through global M&A

Outbound deals hit lowest level since 2014 after cash clampdown For months, Chinese conglomerate Fujian Thai Hot has been on the cusp of completing a $1.4bn buyout of a Hong Kong-based life insurer.There has been just one problem: the cash needed to pay for the deal has been stuck inside China, awaiting a final regulatory sign-off from the country’s...

Inox Renewables to sell wind power assets to Leap Green Energy

Leap Green Energy said the acquisition will help it increase its operating capacity to 762MW across four states Inox Group has decided to exit the wind farm business to focus on its core businesses, including that of wind turbine manufacturing. Mumbai: Renewable energy firm Inox Renewables Ltd on Tuesday said it has agreed to sell its operating wind...

Asia-Pacific financial sector M&A declines amid uncertainty

Volume falls 38% amid global turmoil; China, South Korea post growthThe number of mergers and acquisitions involving financial companies in the Asia-Pacific region dropped 10% in 2016 from the previous year amid increased global uncertainty, according to Deloitte Tohmatsu Financial Advisory.The business of buying and selling companies was negatively...

Acq Lite

'Transformers: The Last Knight' is the No. 1 movie in North America with $45.3M

June 25 (UPI) --Transformers: The Last Knight is the No. 1 movie in North America this weekend, earning $45.3 million in receipts, BoxOfficeMojo.com announced Sunday.Tied at No. 2 are Cars 3 and Wonder Woman with $25.175 million each, followed by 47 Meters Down at No. 3 with $7.4 million and All Eyez on Me at No. 4 with $5.9 million.Rounding out the...

The Bellas reunite for USO show in 'Pitch Perfect 3' trailer

June 25 (UPI) -- Universal Pictures released a 2 1/2-minute trailer for its upcoming, music-themed comedy, Pitch Perfect 3 this weekend.Directed by Trish Sie, the third installment in the franchise stars Anna Kendrick, Rebel Wilson, Hailee Steinfeld, Brittany Snow, Anna Camp, Alexis Knapp, Hana Mae Lee, Ester Dean, Chrissie Fit, Kelley Jakle, Shelley...

Leslie Jones, Bruno Mars to kick off the 2017 BET Awards

June 24 (UPI) --Saturday Night Live star Leslie Jones announced via Twitter that pop music icon Bruno Mars will help her kick off the festivities at Sunday's BET Awards."I told y'all we would start our wonderful life together, that's why @BrunoMars and I are opening up the 2017 #BETAwards," Jones tweeted Friday.The comedian is hosting the event where...

Leslie Jones says Bruno Mars will help her open the 2017 BET Awards

June 24 (UPI) --Saturday Night Live star Leslie Jones announced via Twitter that pop music icon Bruno Mars will help her kick off the festivities at Sunday's BET Awards."I told y'all we would start our wonderful life together, that's why @BrunoMars and I are opening up the 2017 #BETAwards," Jones tweeted Friday.The comedian is hosting the event where...

Aaron Carter went to hospital after he says he was body-shamed

June 24 (UPI) -- Singer Aaron Carter was briefly hospitalized this week after he says he was body-shamed by fans about his recent weight loss.He documented the experience in a series of tweets, many of which were met with mean-spirited messages from other Twitter users."This is body shaming. You guys are bullying me. I've already adressed my medical...