South East Asia

Date

Remittances from overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) may drop by $5 billion this year as emerging markets, including the Philippines, face numerous challenges brought about by the coronavirus pandemic, according to Metropolitan Bank & Trust Co. (Metrobank). Pauline Revillas, research analyst at Metrobank, said the weak global demand, lower foreign direct investments (FDIs) and portfolio outflows may result in a sustained drop in remittances.....


SUKUK issuance is expected to fall by 5 per cent this year due to the Covid-19 pandemic, ending four years years of rapid growth, a report by Moody's Investors Service has suggested. Some US$77 billion in sukuk was issued in the first six months of 2020, US$87 billion in the same period of 2019 as the pandemic pared activity in Malaysia and Indonesia, Moody's said.....


Suicide continues to the leading cause of death for youths, with a total of 71 people aged 20 to 29 taking their own lives last year. CNA looks into why some young people delay seeking mental health treatment, despite growing awareness in Singapore. Kevin* has known his mind “works differently” ever since he was in Secondary 3. Things like grocery shopping may be therapeutic for some, but it is an incredibly stressful task for him. &l…


Players need to overcome obstacles and also scale up to meet new forms of demand AS THE pandemic puts pressure on the logistics sector, many industry players are turning to technology and experimenting with new business models to overcome operational challenges and chart a new future. "The lack of transparency and visibility within supply chains are...


Opening of centres delayed; more muted take-up of new spaces Expansion plans among co-working space operators have been more muted this year, with the opening of new work centres delayed and a more subdued take-up of new spaces.   But despite the quiet year thus far, co-working spaces are expected to play a key role in many businesses' return to work amid the pandemic, real estate firm Colliers International noted in a report on the flexib…


Myanmar should look to reopening tourist destinations to boost the domestic market in the absence of foreign travellers for the rest of this year, Mandalay’s top business body says. Mandalay, the economic powerhouse of northern Myanmar, undertook lockdown measures earlier this year to contain the spread of the coronavirus. Those restrictions, as well as disruptions to trade have taken a toll on businesses in Myanmar’s second largest c…


Cambodian exports to the US market ballooned 23 per cent to $2.75 billion in the first half of this year from $2.24 billion in the same period last year, data from the US Census Bureau showed.....


The construction of the National Road (NR) No. 10, the western corridor linking Battambang northwestern province to Koh Kong coastal province, is 36 percent complete since it broke ground in March this year....


The roll-out of mid-range 5G-enabled smartphones and attractive promotions for new flagship handsets, including the Samsung Note 20 and the upcoming iPhone 12, are likely to stoke demand in the local smartphone market in the second half, say industry pundits. Aggressive competition makes it harder to predict who will be in the pole position in the market, and it could change quarter by quarter in terms of market share, tech research firm IDC Thai…


Worst-case scenario puts international visits next year at just 15% of 2019 levels The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) says foreign tourist arrivals next year could be as low as 15% of 2019 levels under a worst-case scenario that factors in a prolonged Covid-19 crisis....


Ascend Commerce, an e-commerce arm of CP Group, is set to acquire Hong Kong-based auction platform Chilindo for 558 million baht as part of a move to complement CP's business and elevate local brands to compete at the international level. CP chief executive Suphachai Chearavanont said e-commerce is transforming into a mainstream channel to conduct business because of the coronavirus pandemic.....


Press Metal Aluminium Holdings Bhd's (PMetal) subsidiary Press Metal (Labuan) Ltd is repaying US$173.11 million debt papers. In an exchange filing today, the aluminium extruder said the papers represented 43.28 per cent of the outstanding principal amount of its senior notes. PMetal had on July 28 invited the note holders to submit tenders to redeem their notes for cash.....


Health, energy trends to drive growth SET-listed Energy Absolute (EA) expects to see a significant increase in demand for electric vehicles (EVs) in Thailand within five years, citing the clean energy trend, better technology and changes brought about by the coronavirus pandemic.....


Indonesian agriculture has emerged as a buttress against the pandemic’s impact on the economy this year, supported by the resilience of farmers and the accounting effects of an incidental shift in the harvest season. The sector, the second-largest contributor to Indonesia’s economy, managed to grow 2.19 percent year-on-year (yoy) in the second quarter, albeit more slowly than the sector’s yoy growth in the same period last year:…


Vietnam’s revenue of retail sales and services in July was estimated at 431.9 trillion VND (18.6 billion USD), up 3.3 percent over the previous month and up 4.3 percent from the same period last year, according to the General Statistics Office (GSO).Trade and service activities in July continued to increase due to policies on stimulating domestic consumption and tourism, along with government support packages to help people reduce the …


The 4th meeting of the Vietnam-Japan Joint Committee on Cooperation in Industry, Trade and Energy was held in Hanoi on August 7 in the form of video conferencing.The meeting was co-chaired by Vietnamese Minister of Industry and Trade Tran Tuan Anh and Japanese Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Kajiyama Hiroshi.....


The Việt Nam Posts and Telecommunications Group (VNPT) has received a oneM2M certificate, a global international certificate for technology solutions, for its VNPT IoT Platform. To achieve the certification, VNPT IoT Platform had to undergo a minimum of 282 tests under the rigorous testing category specified by oneM2M.


Budget carrier Cebu Pacific has now sent a total of 14 aircraft for storage at Alice Springs in Australia, with more possibly eyed as travel demand is not expected to return to its robust state anytime soon. On top of the 14 aircraft that have been sent so far, Cebu Pacific spokesperson Charo Logarta Lagamon said the next batch is still under study. “We have a fleet of 75 aircraft. Because costs continue to be challenged, we have sent aircr…


How do you reconcile having the highest literacy rate in Asia, to being the poorest in reading comprehension? Yes, that’s us. And to the government’s credit, the Philippines asked to be tested under the United Nations Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA). This measures the ability of 15-year-olds to meet real-life challenges using their reading, mathematics, and science knowledge and skills, reflecting the quality of …


The Villar Group has launched an online delivery service platform to cater to its affiliate brands AllHome, AllDay and Coffee Project across all branches and to other businesses as well. Getmo, the new company, provides courier, shuttle and shopper service to key areas inside and outside of Mega Manila. It was established to meet the high demand for transport and delivery service due to quarantine restrictions......


Refusing to join maritime exercises with other countries in the South China Sea would be a loss of opportunity for the Philippine Navy to improve its capabilities, a maritime expert said Wednesday. Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana earlier said President Rodrigo Duterte has a "standing order" for the navy not to participate in naval exercises in the South China except in national waters. Lawyer Jay Batongbacal, director of the University of the …


The country’s rice inventory declined in June as the volume of the main staple continues to be released. Latest data from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) showed that total rice inventory stood at 2.4 million metric tons (MT) as of June, 7.8 percent lower than the previous year’s volume stock of 2.6 million MT. The current inventory is also 14.3 percent lower than the previous month’s volume stock of 2.79 million MT....…


The share of the national government’s debt to gross domestic product rose to 48.1 percent in the first half as the economy plunged into a recession, the Department of Finance (DOF) said. In his latest economic bulletin, Finance Undersecretary Gil Beltran said the debt-to-GDP ratio as of end-June 2020 rose to 48.1 percent from the record low of 39.6 percent by the end of 2019 and 43.4 percent as of the end of the first quarter.....


Bring a piece of Singapore into your home with these designs by local creatives. Dragon Playground Pet Hideout S$42, from Paper Carpenter, papercarpenter.com Furkids won't have to miss out on any National Day fun with this innovative toy. Made from recycled chemical-free cardboard and shaped like the famous dragon playground in Toa Payoh, your pet cats, rabbits, guinea pigs and chinchillas can amuse themselves for hours playing hide-and-seek. The…


Savers face dilemma of raiding their nest eggs or taking risks on stock market The extraordinarily low interest rates in place today are a boon when you're buying a house, refinancing a mortgage, leasing a car or paying off student debt. If you qualify for a loan, low rates can help you spend less and get more.   But there is a dark side to falling interest rates. While they are helpful for qualified borrowers - and have contributed to tre…


Singapore businesses are keeping up their activities in Tokyo despite the rising COVID-19 cases there. But as Michiyo Ishida reports, many have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.


Chefs and cookbook authors reflect on Singapore's food heritage and the direction it's going THERE are few things that make us uniquely Singaporean more than our food. Whether it's chicken rice, bak chor mee or that all-time favourite of those breaching stay-home notices - bak kut teh - there's always something that makes us feel we're home, truly. But even as we find comfort in flavours we grew up with, there's always this niggling question: So …


Its No. 7 spot on global list would improve if it raises withdrawal age A group of overseas financial experts have again confirmed what many Singaporeans already know - that the Central Provident Fund (CPF) is one of the world's best retirement schemes.   The Melbourne Mercer Global Pension Index 2019, which studies retirement schemes of 37 countries, put Singapore's CPF at No. 7, behind the Netherlands in first place, followed by Denmark,…


Motivated to introduce local products to the international market, two Cambodian women entrepreneurs on Saturday launched the WeMall e-commerce platform in their mission to integrate the Kingdom into the regional and global supply chain. The e-marketplace was co-founded by Touch Socheata and Heang Omuoy.   Socheata told The Post on Thursday that central to the platform’s objectives is linking products made by Cambodian women to the wor…


Wood and wooden product exports hit 1.05 billion USD in July, bringing the figure to 6.09 billion USD in the first seven months of this year, a year-on-year rise of 6.2 percent, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) has revealed. Imports by the sector neared 1.31 billion USD in the seven-month period, down 10.3 percent compared to the same period last year. It therefore posted a surplus of 4.78 billion USD. The US, Ch…


The customs of Nepal has issued a "No Objection Certificate" (NOC) allowing Vietnamese exporters' peppercorn containers that have been stuck in the country for several months to return home, according to the Asia-Africa Market Department under the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT). The issuance of the NOC was the result of joint efforts of the MoIT, the Vietnamese Embassy in India, and the Vietnamese Trade Office in India and Nepal …


Dozens of tonnes of Vietnamese longans have been exported to Australia and distributed in the states of South Australia and Western Australia over the past few weeks.The most recent was the shipment of 7.5 tonnes of longans from the Mekong Delta provinces which arrived in Australia on August 6 and the 9-tonne batch departing from the northern province of Hai Duong on August 8 will join a promotional event, titled “Nhan Viet Nam minh” …


American oil and gas giant Chevron plans to withdraw from the national strategic Indonesia Deepwater Development (IDD) project in Makassar Strait and the government has wasted no time seeking a replacement. The government has approached Italian oil and gas company Eni to take over the project, said Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry acting oil and gas director general Ego Syahrial on Wednesday.....


Vizione Holdings Bhd's subsidiary Vizione Construction Sdn Bhd (VCSB) has bagged a RM90.01 million renewable energy project from SDF Hydro Sdn Bhd in Kedah. In an exchange filing today, Vizione said the project was for the proposed design, construction, testing and commissioning of 9.6 MW installed capacity small hydro at Empangan Pedu in Padang Terap. The project is scheduled to be completed on August 8, 2024....


US-based streaming platform Netflix is one of the most recent tech giants to have become subject to taxes in Indonesia, as its popularity increases during the pandemic and the government hunts for untapped sources of revenue. While the streaming service has not disclosed its Indonesian subscription numbers, the company has met a threshold for taxation stipulated by a Finance Ministerial Regulation. The regulation holds that nonresident foreign fi…


nternational Trade and Industry Ministry and Malaysia External Trade Development Corp (Matrade) are developing the National Trade Blueprint (2021-2025) to enhance Malaysia's trade competitiveness globally. Matrade said the blueprint would deep dive into the issues of supply-demand constraint as well as gaps and challenges within the business environment, which impede trade performance. The national trade promotion organisation said Malaysia's exp…


The Kingdom’ construction sector has created more than 170,000 jobs in average per day across the country in the first half this year, an increase from 134,000 compared with the same period last year, according to figures from the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction (MLMUPC)


Staycations are expected to see a surge in popularity, following the reopening of some tourist destinations in Indonesia, a research and consultancy firm has stated. Inventure predicted that with the current travel restrictions in place, local travelers would be the segment that boosts the Indonesian tourism sector.....


FGV Holdings Bhd (FGV) is targeting to sell 40,000 bottles of compound fertilisers in 2021. This follows a surge in demand during the Movement Control Order (MCO) period among home gardeners and urban farming communities. FGV, an agricultural and agri-commodities company, said it had found a niche market for its fertiliser business. Group chief executive officer Datuk Haris Fadzilah Hassan said this was a positive trend as communities were more a…


The government is allocating Rp 10 trillion (US$684.72 million) this year to provide loans for regional administrations, while taking measures to step up government spending, as it seeks to speed up the recovery of the pandemic-hit economy. Regional administrations have seen revenues decline by around 28 percent on average amid the coronavirus pandemic, said the Finance Ministry’s fiscal balance director general Astera Primanto Bhakti, addi…


Universal Music Group (UMG) Thailand, the local unit of the global music label, has joined forces with Independent Artist Management (iAM), a talent management firm, to produce Thai artists and gear up for "T-pop" promotion in Asia. The move is aimed at capitalising on cross-cultural music opportunities on music and video streaming platforms....


Frasers Property Thailand (FPT) reported a sharp year-on-year decline in net profit for its fiscal third quarter (April-June 2020) on a slight drop in revenue to 4.88 billion baht, partly due to a rental relief programme for tenants affected by the Covid-19 outbreak....


Panrob Kamla has big plans for his Chaixi Bameekiao venture Bangkok offers the appeal of a better life for many young people from Isan, Thailand's poorest region. Some look for quality education or better jobs, and a better quality of life. Panrob Kamla, a Grade 4 graduate and ex-farmer from Roi Et, chased that dream in the capital, founding the successful Chaixi Bameekiao, the renowned street noodle chain found on many street corners in Bangkok.…


The government will resume the preemployment card program on Saturday and prioritize people affected by the COVID-19 pandemic after the program had been briefly halted following irregularities. After the suspension in late May, the preemployment card program, which combines social assistance with upskilling, will raise the number of recipients it admits per batch to 800,000......


The Asia Pacific region’s leading rewards and discovery platform ShopBack will launch its website and mobile app in Việt Nam today (August 8). It launched in Beta at the end of 2019, and has since acquired over 150 merchants and around 800,000 users. It has given back VNĐ4 billion so far.....


New policies are in the making to allow foreign firms to gain greater footing in Việt Nam's petrol retail market, according to the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT). Government Decision 83/2014/NĐ-CP, for the first time, considers giving the green light to domestic petrol retail firms to sell up to 34 per cent of their shares to foreign buyers. The sales must also be inspected and approved by the MoIT before taking effect.


The HCM City Department of Transport has recommended that the People’s Committee should collect infrastructure fees at ports to fund improvements to their facilities. The volume of cargo handled by them is growing at 5 per cent a year, with the goods brought mainly by road, meaning the number of container trucks going in and out of the ports is huge.....


Homeowners, members and guests in Tagaytay Highlands, a premier leisure development of the SM Group of Companies,  are now fully enjoying high-quality services in the recreational and residential complex after a successful cleanup and rehabilitation. In March, its major roads, driveways, golf courses and other facilities were cleared following Taal Volcano’s phreatic eruption early this year.....