India

2020-02-25

IOL Chemicals and Pharmaceuticals Ltd., the world’s biggest producer of ibuprofen, is set for its best month in more than two years as the prolonged shutdown of China’s Hubei province boosts prices of the non-prescription painkiller. The Ludhiana-based firm supplies about a third of the world’s requirement of the drug, with 10% coming from China’s Hubei Biocause Pharmaceutical Co. Prices of ibuprofen have risen by $3 per kilogram in the last few weeks to about $18 and may hit $20 if supp…


"India is next only to China in terms of the cash. However, the percentage of cash withdrawals to GDP has been constant in India at around 17 per cent," the report said. Cash is still king in India, but there has been a perceptible shift in favour of digitisation in recent years, according to an internal study of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). Having a high currency in circulation (CIC) relative to gross domestic product (GDP) is a good indicator of cash being highly preferred for payments…


"We make the greatest weapons ever made - aeroplanes, rockets, ships, missiles. We make the best and we are dealing now with India," said Trump Visiting US president Donald Trump, addressing a cheering throng of 125,000 Indians in Ahmedabad’s Motera Stadium soon after landing in India on Monday, talked up US-India defence cooperation and pitched to sell India “some of the best, most feared, military equipment on the planet.” “We make the greatest weapons ever made – aeroplanes, rockets…


  Trump India Visit: Trump will also meet Indian CEOs at a roundtable event, hosted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, at 3 pm After a busy Day 1, US President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump have their task cut out for today's engagements. Trump and the First Lady will be accorded a ceremonial welcome at the Rashtrapati Bhawan by President Ram Nath Kovind and his wife Savita Kovind around 10 am today. After this, the First Couple will pay their respects to the father of the nation,…


2020-02-25

Trump’s visit may encourage US firms to start manufacturing ops in India Talks may be held to smoothen out issues such as tariffs, visas, and policy stability that hamper ease of doing business The visit of President Donald Trump to India could encourage American companies to start manufacturing in India in the coming months, potentially boosting Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s flagship Make in India programme. Though Trump has dialled down expectations of a broader trade deal immediatel…


2020-02-25

GoAir is offering Ahmedabad to Indore tickets starting from ₹957 The airline is giving lucrative offers for international destination under this latest sale Budget carrier GoAir is offering flight tickets for as low as ₹957 in new sale offer. The airline has named the new sale 'GoAir Go Fly sale'. The booking for GoAir's latest offer started on 24 February and is valid till 26 February. In the 3-day booking period tickets can be booked for travel between 11 March and 15 April 2020, GoAir…


Maruti has plans to bring to the market the parallel hybrid technology developed by Suzuki Motor Corporation Maruti SuzukiNSE 0.01 % is banking on affordable green vehicles including those running on compressed natural gas (CNG) and on hybrid technology to drive in volumes and cut emissions over the next few years. India’s biggest carmaker will stop sale of its diesel cars from April 2020.The company is eyeing sales of a million green vehicles mid-term, with nearly half of these volumes coming…


Apart from the Adani group, the Tata group, the Hinduja group, Indigo and a New York-based fund, Interups, are expected to submit EoIs The Adani group will join the race to acquire Air India and plans to submit an expression of interest (EoI) by next month, said a source close to the development. The final decision of Adani will, however, depend on the outcome of the due diligence after submission of the EoI. After the EoI process, prospective bidders will get access to data of the airline. …


While talking to Microsoft's Satya Nadella, Ambani said that gaming could be the next big industry in India Reliance Industries chairman Mukesh Ambani might have hinted at his next big bet. While talking to Microsoft's Satya Nadella, Ambani said that gaming could be the next big industry in India."Gaming is really doesn't exist in India... With cloud and broadband connectivity, there is huge potential," he said. Read more at:https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/tech/ites/game-on-this-could-be-mu…


US President Donald Trump on Monday said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s rise from his humble background as a “chai-wallah” (tea-seller) underscored the “limitless promise of the great nation”, remarks which reflected the bonhomie shared by the two leaders. Everybody loves him, Trump said of Modi at the “Namaste Trump” event here, and then added that the prime minister is a very “tough” negotiator.....


Mega roadshow and public rally to give Trump’s India tour an electrifying start If sobriquets could be borrowed, Ahmedabad, perhaps, would like to be called the Maximum City, at least for a day. The reason is the much anticipated visit of US President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump, who will kick-start their first India tour from here amid much excitement and fanfare. And, Ahmedabad is all charged-up to gift the head of the US Government the spectacle of a lifetime.....


Audiences are trending towards interactivity, personalization, and abstract design. Keep this in mind when branding your business The 2010s were defined by tech-based startups, think Uber and Airbnb, that shook up major industries like transportation and hospitality. While their products were revolutionary, at the end of the day it was their cutting-edge branding that really took these businesses to the next level. As we enter 2020, it’s important to strive towards branding that’s just as co…


Deloitte ranked 250 firms globally in its annual report based on their revenues for FY2018. The Indian retail major secured the 56th spot this year against the 94th rank the previous year Billionaire Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Retail has topped the list of '50 fastest-growing retailers globally between FY2013-2018' in the Deloitte's Global Powers of Retailing 2020 index. Deloitte ranked 250 firms globally in its annual report based on their revenues for FY2018. The Indian retail major secured …


The Chatterjee Group (TCG) is in talks with global energy companies to rope them in as equity partners in its upcoming petrochemical project in Odisha and is also on the lookout for partners and strategic investors for its project Tamil Nadu. Sources aware of this development told Business Standard that while TCG is looking at a 2:1 debt-equity ratio to fund these projects, the group will also be approaching investors and banks to raise capital in the next six months.....


2020-02-23

As part of India’s push for a gas based economy, state run Indian Oil Corporation Ltd (IOCL) is expected to ink an agreement with ExxonMobil, one of the world’s largest publicly-traded energy firms, and Chart Industries Inc. for transporting gas through containers during the US President Donald Trump’s visit to India, said two people aware of the development.....


Natural gas prices are likely to be cut by a steep 25% in April translating into lower fuel cost Natural gas prices in India are likely to be cut by a steep 25 per cent beginning April, in line with the slump in global rates, sources said.The price of most of the natural gas produced by state-owned ONGCNSE 1.08 % and Oil IndiaNSE -9.61 % Ltd, which account for the bulk of India's existing gas output, is likely to be cut to around USD 2.5 per million British thermal unit for the six-month period …


Last year, the government announced consolidation of ten PSBs into four mega state-owned lenders With the deadline of April 1 fast approaching for the mega merger of ten public sector banks, there seems to be more odd in the way of meeting the target date as a series of regulatory approvals and clearances are still pending, bank officials said. Even after Cabinet approval to the proposed mega merger plan, officials said, fixation of share swap ratio, shareholders consent and other regulatory app…


Paytm plans to invest around Rs 10,000 cr over the next three years to expand financial services Digitial payment giant Paytm expects to turn profitable after two years as it is monetising the existing customer base and eyes financial services as its next major frontier for growth, its founder CEO Vijay Shekhar Sharma said.Noida-based firm, which had an astonishing rise after infamous demonetisation in 2016, is betting on financial services, commerce and payments as three key focus areas. Read m…


Intermediaries in the supply chain are staring at a bleak future with the government drafting new rules seeking to regulate their pricing in a bid to cut logistics costs for exporters and importers. A Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) targeting the non-vessel owning common carriers (NVOCCs), freight forwarders and consolidators is being finalised.....


US is one of the few countries with which India has a trade surplus The United States (US) has surpassed China to become India’s top trading partner, showing greater economic ties between the two countries. According to the data of the commerce ministry, in 2018-19, the bilateral trade between the US and India stood at $87.95 billion.....


Middle East

2020-02-25

Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) has completed the training of 14 Emirati students majoring in electromechanical fields at the Abu Dhabi Centre for Technical and Vocational Education and Training. The training was conducted as part of RTA’s practical training programme launched in 2008 to offer Emirati students exposure to practical skills in fields relevant to RTA.  “We have inducted 14 Emirati students from the Abu Dhabi Centre for Technical and Vocational Education and Training as par…


2020-02-23

In the strong family business circles of the Middle East, the question of succession is often a fraught one. DAMAC Properties, the real estate developer founded and run for nearly two decades by Hussain Sajwani, seems to have plenty of options in the matter. His four children all play a role in DAMAC, but Ali — the 28-year-old eldest son — looks to be the heir apparent for the billion-dollar-plus group, one of the UAE’s leading property groups.....


A growing number of business parks are being built in Riyadh to cope with increasing demand for office space in the capital of Saudi Arabia, according to new research. Savills, the global real estate services provider, highlighted the introduction of business parks as an instrument to meet the requirements of businesses and to continue to attract and retain talents. Savills noted that business parks have proven to be more popular than traditional stand-alone buildings in Riyadh. Gated and secure…


Wow Electronic Transport Services will join Careem and Uber on the roads of Dubai after receiving approval from Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) to begin operations, the company has announced. Like other ride-hailing apps, Wow allows users to order a ride to pick them up and take them to a particular destination. In a statement late last week, Wow announced that it had completed contractual requirement with RTA and received approval to begin operations from late January......


2020-02-23

The Egyptian parliament has announced that laws that imprison investors have been scratched, stressing that imposing jail time on financial wrongdoers affects investment in Egypt. Speaker Ali Abdel-Aal said in a public parliamentary session that he and parliament will not allow investment to “escape” from Egypt, “so the idea of replacing imprisonment with deterrent fines must be preserved”.....


2020-02-23

The two-day G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors meeting kicked off in Riyadh on Saturday with taxation dominating the agenda. Saudi Finance Minister Mohammed Al-Jadaan said this year would represent a key test for tax transparency worldwide.....


A new tourism fee has been agreed governing short-term rental market in Abu Dhabi. The additional charge for Airbnb-style holiday homes must not exceed 6% of the guest’s bill, according to the legislation drafted by Abu Dhabi Executive Council. The resolution “aims to enhance the reputation of the emirate as a leading destination for high quality hospitality, and to ensure that each tourism facility is afforded equal opportunity to attract business”.....


2020-02-23

Saudi Arabia’s economy is expected to grow this year, supported by the non-oil sector, despite a challenging global economic backdrop, the Saudi central bank governor said on Saturday as the kingdom hosts the G20 meeting.Ahmed Al-Kholifey said it was too early to see the full picture of the economic damage caused by the new coronavirus, which has emerged in China and spread globally.....


2020-02-23

Made For Trade Live roadshow visits Barcelona for the third time, strengthening ties DMCC showcases the ease of doing business in its free zone in Dubai to over 150 business leaders Expo 2020 Dubai set to boost opportunities for Spanish firms   DMCC – the world’s flagship Free Zone and Government of Dubai Authority on commodities trade and enterprise – took its Made For Trade Live roadshow to Barcelona, Spain, on 21 February 2020. The event highlighted the commercial appeal of Dub…


2020-02-23

Al Tayer: The initiative contributes to a better quality of life as it supports first and last-mile connections Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) and Careem officially launched the first-of-its-kind bike sharing service in the region, providing 780 pedal assisted bikes over 78 stations across Dubai under the project’s phase 1. HE Mattar Mohammed Al Tayer, Director General and Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of the RTA and Mr. Mudassir Sheikha, Co-Founder and CEO of Car…


2020-02-23

The United Arab Emirates and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia strengthen their economic partnership to enhance the trade, diversify and create opportunities for the businesses and people in both the countries. Etihad Credit Insurance, ECI, the UAE Federal export credit company has partnered with the Saudi Fund for Development, SFD, for financing and providing credit insurance to protect non-oil exports of the UAE and Saudi Arabia. This collaboration marks a favorable step in strengthening the allianc…


2020-02-23

Etisalat announced that it has completed the acquisition of Help AG, a privately held regional company specialising in the delivery of cyber security solutions and services. Prompted by a clear synergy, this acquisition sees the integration of the cyber security capabilities of both companies to create the region’s strongest cyber security unit augmenting Etisalat Digital’s portfolio of digital security. services. This development enables Etisalat Digital established lines of business - comp…


2020-02-22

Dr. Badr Al-Shibani is the founder and CEO of Jeddah-based Kai Holding, which was founded in January 2005. He is responsible for business development and strategic direction at the group and its subsidiaries. He is also the chairman of Hadath group, which was established in March 2007. It provides diverse and innovative management and marketing solutions to its target market in the Gulf region.....


2020-02-22

A video posted on Twitter by a member of the Precious Metals Committee explaining the ways some gold manufacturers manipulate weight of gold and diamonds has attracted significant attention in Saudi Arabia, raising the question of the authenticity of gold in the Kingdom. In the video, Mohammed Azooz said cover-ups have made many Saudi gold sellers lose power over the market, and that industry was being controlled by non-Saudis....


2020-02-22

Saudi Aramco plans to invest $110 billion to develop unconventional gas reserves in Saudi Arabia’s Al-Jafurah field, Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported on Friday. The development plans were reviewed by the Saudi High Commission for Hydrocarbons in a meeting chaired by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman......


2020-02-22

Following initial news of the $3.1 billion deal in March 2019, US ride-hailing firm Uber completed its acquisition of Dubai-based vehicle-for-hire company Careem at the beginning of January 2020. Middle East and North Africa (MENA) startups have been getting much-needed funds to scale up their businesses, and 2019 seems to have set the bar high....


Apartments in Dubai’s International City offer the best yields in the United Arab Emirates, according to the latest Property Finder Trends report. The apartments offered yields of 10.6 percent in H2 2019 ahead of comparable affordable communities like Discovery Gardens (8.6 percent), Al Barsha (8 percent), Barsha Heights or Tecom (7.9 percent), Dubai Sports City (7.8 percent) and Jumeirah Village Circle, or JVC (7.6 percent).....


Saudi Arabia’s GDP growth is projected to see an upturn this year, due mostly to progress in growth in the non-oil sector, central bank Governor Ahmed Alkholifey saidGrowth this year will be faster than in 2019, “especially in the private sector,” the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority governor told reporters during a conference in Riyadh.......


2020-02-22

Although the number of women entrepreneurs is increasing across the world, they still face many challenges such as cultural barriers, and lack of funding, according to a top female corporate executive. "One might think that we are indeed making major progress, most likely the number of women entrepreneurs is increasing but the reality is that they still face challenges," Jamila Belabidi-Chahid, Global Women Economic Empowerment and Global Innovation Purchases at Procter and Gamble. Societal norm…


2020-02-22

Petrofac, the international service provider to the oil and gas production and processing industry, has been awarded an engineering, procurement, construction and commissioning, EPCC, contract by Sharjah National Oil Corporation, SNOC. The contract is worth around US$40 million, Jersey-registered Petrofac said in a press release here today. "The contract awarded to Petrofac’s Engineering & Production Services division, EPS, demonstrates delivery against company's strategy to secure smaller gre…


South East Asia

2020-02-25

Demand for data analysts in the country is steadily rising, but higher education institutions (HEIs) are not producing enough graduates to fill positions, according to a new paper by the Philippine Institute for Developing Studies (PIDS). The policy note titled “Aligning higher education with demands for data science workforce” said skills needed for data science and analytics in the country remain underdeveloped in the Philippine workforce....


2020-02-25

The consortium of seven conglomerates need to address key issues in order to advance its P102-billion proposal to redevelop the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) . Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade said yesterday two issues remain unresolved despite the consortium’s submission of its revised concession agreement last week. Ruben Reinoso, transportation undersecretary for planning, said  these include the fate of employees of the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) and t…


2020-02-25

Operational efficiency may help Petroliam Nasional Bhd post better results in the fourth quarter (Q4) ended December 31, 2019 but low oil and natural gas prices could yet jeopardise it, analysts said. In the third quarter, Petronas’ net profit was slashed by half to RM7.42 billion against RM14.62 billion the year before, mainly due to oil price downturn and net impairment on assets. However, it was partially offset by lower net product and production costs, as well as lower tax expenses. Petro…


The Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM) expects to see a decline in Chinese investment following the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. BKPM head Bahlil Lahadalia said on Monday that although the agency had yet to see any decline in investment realization from China and other countries, he projected a decline in foreign direct investment if the outbreak continued until March......


The government is upbeat that the sweeping omnibus bill on job creation will bolster investment and open up more jobs for Indonesians, as it braces for tough public scrutiny during the bill’s deliberation at the House of Representatives. Coordinating Economic Minister Airlangga Hartarto said that the omnibus bill on job creation could help the government inch closer to its 6 percent economic growth target through Rp 1,200 trillion (US$87 billion) in projected investment.....


2020-02-25

Political uncertainty that had wreaked havoc in the country over the weekend has now calmed down after Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad was appointed as the interim Prime Minister yesterday. However, with the ongoing political situation, businesses are concerned if the stimulus package which is expected to be announced on Thursday (Feb 27) would hit the stop button as well. An analyst said that the package, which would boost the local economy amid the global economic slowdown due to COVID-19, is much nee…


2020-02-25

The unease caused by Covid-19 is expected to drag down Thai tourism for more than six months, triggering airlines to slash ticket prices to steer the market, while Nok Air and Nokscoot cut pilots and cabin crew to save cost. Thai Airways International (THAI) is partnering with the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) to offer discounts such as free domestic tickets to international tourists. Low-cost carriers plan to focus on local tourists opting for domestic travel as there is a limited number …


2020-02-25

A mass deportation of Chinese nationals working in Philippine offshore gaming operator (POGO) firms is shaping up as China’s crackdown on telecommunications-related crimes entails the cancellation of their passports, the Bureau of Immigration (BI) said yesterday. The BI said it would verify with the Chinese embassy if their government had indeed cancelled the passports of thousands of their citizens employed in POGOs due to alleged involvement in telecommunications fraud. “This could lead to…


Vietnamese stocks are some of the world’s most battered this year, yet market watchers are backing a turnaround. They’re pointing to valuations that haven’t been this cheap since 2017 and an economy that’s been growing 5 percent or more each year for two decades. The nation’s benchmark gauge has almost completely erased its 2019 returns and now trades at about 12 times estimated earnings over the next year......


2020-02-25

Investments already surpassed total for last year in first two months, writes William Hicks Despite the government's bluster about building the country into a startup nation as part of the Thailand 4.0 scheme, startup funding has been lacklustre the past few years as Thailand remains bereft of the unicorns found in Asean competitors Singapore and Indonesia. The funding dearth seems to be turning around this year as some large multimillion-dollar funding rounds see Thai startups moving past Serie…


2020-02-25

A delegation of firms from Singapore was expected to visit Việt Nam at the end of this month to seek fruit and vegetable suppliers, as imports from China were declining due to the outbreak of novel coronavirus (COVID-19). The Department of Asian – African Markets under the Ministry of Industry and Trade said this hopefully would be a solution to tackle difficulties caused by the epidemic to Việt Nam’s exports of agro-forestry-fishery products. The epidemic, which was hitting a number o…


HONDA CARS Philippines, Inc. (HCPI) has expressed apprehension on possible safeguard duties on imported vehicles, Trade Secretary Ramon M. Lopez said after a meeting with company officials on Monday. The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) earlier said that they will study possible safeguard measures on imported cars to protect the local assemblers.....


2020-02-25

Manila Electric Co. (Meralco) reported  a six percent rise in core profit to a record P23.8 billion in 2019 on strong sales driven by the residential sector as well as the business process outsourcing industry. In a briefing yesterday, Meralco chief finance officer Betty Siy-Yap said reported net income increased by one percent to P23.02 billion this year, while core net income rose six percent to P22.41 billion. Gross revenues went up by five percent to P304.45 billion, of which 97 percent cam…


Three units of Goldman Sachs pleaded not guilty to charges of misleading investors regarding US$6.5 billion in bond sales that the U.S. investment bank helped raise for state fund 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), Bernama state news agency reported on Monday (Feb 23). The U.S. Department of Justice estimates US$4.5 billion was misappropriated from Malaysia's 1MDB between 2009 and 2014, including some of the funds that Goldman Sachs helped raise.....


BreadTalk Group founder George Quek, his wife Katherine Lee and a substantial shareholder on Tuesday (Feb 25) announced a voluntary conditional cash offer to acquire all issued ordinary shares in BreadTalk at $0.77 apiece, with the aim of delisting the food and beverage player. This also comes as BreadTalk sank into the red for its fiscal fourth quarter and 2019, according to its financial statements released late on Monday night.....


State investor Temasek said on Tuesday (Feb 25) it will implement a company-wide salary freeze, including promotion increases, for its upcoming April compensation exercise.  Replying to CNA's queries, Temasek added that the senior management team, which includes managing directors and positions ranked above, will also "take a partial cut in their annual bonuses this year". ......


Epidemic's ripple effects could last past first quarter, hit Asian economies more severely An unexpected surge of coronavirus cases outside China has raised concerns about a more severe impact on the trade-dependent Singapore economy. The sudden emergence of large clusters of infections in South Korea, Italy and Iran over the weekend sparked fears of a global pandemic, walloping stocks and currencies across the globe.......


Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati hopes to get Saudi Arabia on board to invest more in Indonesia, particularly through the planned sovereign wealth fund that is to be channeled for projects intended to aid the country’s development.  The minister’s efforts to offer investment projects through the sovereign wealth fund to Saudi Arabia came amid what she described as sluggish economic conditions in the United States and China, two countries that had been Indonesia’s main investment sou…


2020-02-24

Exports rose for the first time in six months in January, largely driven by shipments of oil and gold. The Commerce Ministry reported on Monday that customs-cleared exports rose 3.35% year-on-year in January, fetching US$19.62 billion, with imports dropping 7.86% to $ 21.18 billion, generating a trade deficit of $1.55 billion......


MYANMAR, Cambodia and the Philippines pose the highest risks for alternative lending models in South-east Asia, a peer-to-peer funding platform has said in a ranking of regional opportunities, but it pegged Indonesia as a promising market for growth. Still, with a business model aimed at under-banked clients, Latvia-based Robocash - which also has offices in Singapore, Indonesia and Vietnam - asserted that “a high-risk background does not necessarily stand for extreme difficulty” for micro-c…