Singapore

APEC warns of fragile recovery, sees unemployment as challenge

APEC warns of fragile recovery, sees unemployment as challengeSingapore - Ministers of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum on Thursday said the recovery of the global economy was still shaky and expected to be uneven while warning of still-high unemployment rates in some nations.

"The global economic situation has eased considerably," the APEC trade and foreign ministers said in a joint statement after a meeting at the annual APEC summit in Singapore.

Australia warns of withdrawing stimulus too early, sees challenges

Australia warns of withdrawing stimulus too early, sees challengesSingapore  - Australian Treasurer Wayne Swan on Thursday urged economies worldwide to maintain their stimulus packages, saying there were still no clear signs of a sustained pick-up in private demand and challenges like rising unemployment lying ahead.

"We have to maintain stimulus because there is not yet firm evidence of a sustained improvement in global private demand," Swan said before joining a ministerial meeting at the annual summit of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum in Singapore.

China's yuan can be alternative reserve currency in 15 years

China's yuan can be alternative reserve currency in 15 yearsSingapore, Nov 12 - World Bank President Robert Zoellick has said in 15 years the Chinese yuan can become an alternative to US dollar as a global reserve currency, with China's fast economic growth and efforts to internationalise the currency.

Singapore's SingTel posts 10-per-cent rise in quarterly net profit

Singapore's SingTel posts 10-per-cent rise in quarterly net profit Singapore - Singapore Telecommunications Ltd (SingTel) on Wednesday said net profit for the second quarter of its fiscal year rose 10.1 per cent from a year ago, led by robust performance in its markets in Singapore and Australia.

Net profit for the second quarter ending September 30 reached 956 million Singapore dollars (688 million US dollars), up from 868 Singapore dollars a year earlier, SingTel said in a statement.

Asia-Pacific ministers warn economic crisis not over

Asia-Pacific ministers warn economic crisis not overSingapore - Ministers of the Asia-Pacific economies on Wednesday warned that the global economic crisis was not yet over, saying the situation was still fragile despite the current upturn.

"The consensus is that this [crisis] is by no means over," said Singapore Foreign Minister George Yeo after hosting a meeting with foreign and trade ministers at the summit of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum.

"The upturn that we now have is a respite," Yeo said.

World Bank president sees risks for global economy in 2010

Robert ZoellickSingapore - World Bank president Robert Zoellick on Wednesday said he was comfortable about the prospects for the world economy in 2009, but advised governments not to remove their stimulus packages in 2010.

"I feel relatively comfortable about the growth prospects in 2009," Zoellick said on the sidelines of the summit of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) in Singapore.

"I see some risks for 2010," he added, noting that one downturn risk was the handover from the public to the private sector after governments introduced financial and fiscal stimulus packages to overcome the global recession.

Singapore urges Asian economies to build up own sources of growth

Singapore urges Asian economies to build up own sources of growthSingapore urges Asian economies to build up own sources of growthSingapore - Singapore on Wednesday called on Asia's mostly export-reliant economies to build up own sources of growth as the global recession had changed the patterns of demand in the world.

Singapore calls on APEC to push ahead with goal of free trade

Singapore calls on APEC to push ahead with goal of free trade Singapore - Singapore on Tuesday called on the 21 member economies of the Asia-Pacific Economic Forum (APEC) to push ahead with their ambitious goal of free trade in the region, as the forum could set the pace and the direction for the whole world.

"What we really want is a free trade area in Asia-Pacific, but that will be very difficult to negotiate," Singapore Foreign Minister George Yeo said at the sidelines of the APEC annual summit in the city state.

Singapore Airlines posts quarterly loss, sees slight recovery

Singapore Airlines posts quarterly loss, sees slight recoverySingapore - Singapore Airlines (SIA), one of the world's biggest carriers, on Tuesday posted a net loss for the second quarter of the 2009 fiscal year, but said there were indications for a gradual recovery after it had been hit hard by the global recession.

For the second quarter ending September 30, net losses came to 159 million Singapore dollars (114 million US dollars), reversing a profit of 324 million Singapore dollars reported a year earlier, the company said in a statement.

World Bank president praises Asia's attitude in global crisis

Singapore - World Bank president World Bank president praises Asia's attitude in global crisis on Tuesday praised Asia's positive attitude in overcoming the global recession, saying that one critical outcome of the crisis was how Asia and the Asia-Pacific continued to work together.

"Most of the focus coming out of Europe in this crisis is now focused on regulation, compensation, bonuses," Zoellick said in Singapore on the sidelines of the annual summit of Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC).

Singapore's SingTel expands mobile customer base by 26 per cent

Singapore  - Singapore Telecommunications Ltd, or SingTel, said Tuesday that its mobile customer base in the Asia-Pacific expanded to more than 273 million by the end of September, up 57 million, or 26 per cent, from a year ago.

On a quarterly basis, SingTel's customer base in its eight markets - Australia, Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Pakistan, the Philippines, Singapore and Thailand - grew by more than 11 million from 262 million at the end of June, South-East Asia's biggest telecommunications company said.

Entering adulthood, APEC has reached a crucial milestone

Entering adulthood, APEC has reached a crucial milestoneSingapore  - The Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum, dedicated to fostering growth through trade liberalization, has just grown out of its teenage years.

Marking its 20th anniversary in 2009, the forum of 21 Pacific Rim economies - including the United States, China, Japan and Russia - has entered adulthood and is reaching a critical point as its leaders meet for their annual summit in Singapore at the weekend.

Singapore's central bank warns of escalation in property market

Singapore's central bank warns of escalation in property marketSingapore - Singapore's central bank on Monday said that more measures might be needed to counter speculation in the city-state's property market, as there was a risk of an escalation.

"As Singapore emerges from recession and with the market expecting low interest rates to persist for some time, the risk of a renewed escalation of speculative momentum cannot be discounted," said the Monetary Authority of Singapore in its annual Financial Stability Review.

Singapore serial molester must serve 32-year jail term

Singapore serial molester must serve 32-year jail termSingapore  - A Singapore serial molester who sexually assaulted girls as young as 9 has to serve 32 years in jail after a court dismissed his appeal against his sentence, a media report said Monday.

From April 2007 to July last year, Huang Shiyou, 23, a full-time national serviceman, trailed girls up to the age of 14 into lifts, threatened them with a knife and then forced them to secluded spots where he assaulted them.

Tata Power to raise $250 million via FCCBs

Tata Power TATA Power, India's largest private power utility, has revealed its plans to raise $250 million by issuing foreign currency convertible bonds (FCCBs).

The company will roll out the $250 million FCCB issue, which would also have a green-shoe option of raising a further $50 million. The bonds would be listed on the Singapore Stock Exchange.

The FCCBs, having a coupon rate of 1 to 1.75%, which would be convertible into the company's shares at a 10 per cent premium over Rs 1324 at Thursday's close on NSE.

Nomura is acting as the sole underwriter as well as book runner to the issue.

Singapore raises concerns about spat between Thailand and Cambodia

Singapore raises concerns about spat between Thailand and CambodiaSingapore - Singapore on Friday raised concerns about the escalating diplomatic spat between Thailand and Cambodia, urging both nations to resolve their differences quickly to avoid damage to the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN).

"Singapore is concerned about the deteriorating relationship between Thailand and Cambodia," said a spokesman for Singapore's Ministry of Foreign Affairs in a statement, adding that "it is not good for ASEAN."

Singapore couple jailed for hurting and terrifying Philippine maid

Singapore couple jailed for hurting and terrifying Philippine maid Singapore  - A Singapore court has sentenced a couple to several weeks in jail for hurting and terrifying their newly hired Filipino maid, a news report said Friday.

Gideon Yip Yick Weng, 32, was jailed for six weeks and his partner Angela Tay Yan Hwee, 39, for three weeks after they mistreated their maid May Shiela Ornales Juanico, 34, in June last year.

Both had pleaded guilty but appealed against their sentences and were out on bail of 10,000 Singapore dollars (7,200 US dollars) each, the Straits Times newspaper reported.

Singapore's DBS Bank posts 40-per-cent rise in quarterly profit

Singapore's DBS Bank posts 40-per-cent rise in quarterly profit Singapore  - Singapore's DBS Bank, the biggest lender in South-East Asia, said Friday its net profit for the third quarter of 2009 rose 40 per cent year-on-year as revenues increased and bad debt charges declined.

For the three months through September, net profit excluding one-time gains and charges reached 563 million Singapore dollars (404 million US dollars), up from 402 million Singapore dollars a year earlier, DBS said in a statement.

Singapore woman gets three years in jail for torturing maid

Singapore woman gets three years in jail for torturing maid Singapore  - A Singapore court on Wednesday sentenced a woman to three years in jail for torturing her Indonesian maid, a media report said.

Maselly Abdul Aziz, 39, scalded the genitals of her helper with boiling water, helped to pull out two of her teeth, hit her with a metal rod and threatened to kill her.

Last year, Maselly's two children and her lesbian lover were jailed for their part in torturing 30-year-old Badingah, who like many Indonesians only uses one name, the online edition of the Straits Times newspaper reported.

Asia hopes Obama brings message of broad engagement

Asia hopes Obama brings message of broad engagement Singapore  - Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said Tuesday that he hoped US President Barack Obama would send a strong message of broad US engagement in Asia while attending the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) leader's summit next week.

"We hope that we will be able to strengthen the relationship with the United States and they will play a major role in the Asia-Pacific," Lee said.

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