Asean Morning News For April 18

The most comprehensive #Asean Morning News Roundup published

Asean Morning News For April 18

Asean morning newsAsean Morning News

Compiled by AEC News Today    @aecnewstoday

 

Reboot of US-Sino ties good for Asean: The Nation Columnist
Lo and behold, the outcome of the informal summit between United States President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping was good for Asean – as it exceeded Asean leaders’ expectations.
— The Straits Times

At 50, Asean urged to take pride in achievements
As Asean prepares to celebrate its 50th anniversary this August, the regional organisation is deemed a “catalyst for peace” as it provides a platform for stability amid the tug of war between major world powers, says a veteran academic.
– Bangkok Post

ASEAN can help lead the way to Planet 50-50 by 2030
As the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) approaches its 50th anniversary this year, a momentous milestone, the region is at a crossroads more than ever on several fronts, including the rights, health and wellbeing of millions of women and girls.
— The Jakarta Post

In search of unicorns
Indonesia-based startup accelerator Kejora Ventures believes Asean now offers the size and scale to produce some hugely successful tech-based businesses.
— Bangkok Post

Asean stocks down as investors avert risky assets
Most Southeast Asian stock markets fell on Monday as investors sought refuge in safe-haven assets in the wake of mounting geopolitical tension.
— Bangkok Post

Trade and investment relations get boost from OBOR
ASEAN countries are important trade and investment partners of China. Trade volume between the two sides is expected to hit 1 trillion US dollars by 2020.
— CCTV

Myanmar keeps world guessing on refugees
The international community and particularly the Association of Southeast Nations deserve to be fully apprised regarding the fate of thousands of displaced people in Myanmar’s Rakhine state. Instead, all we’ve had is a worrying government announcement that refugee camps were being shut down. Nothing has been said about what happens to them next.
— The Nation

Blazeclan now offers A10 Networks Application Delivery Services to customers in ASEAN
A10 Networks has announced its partnership with Blazeclan, a premier cloud consulting firm, and introduced a new strategic solution that offers multi- cloud, multi-service management.
— Networks Asia

Philippines goes ahead with ASEAN meet after foiling attack
More than 200 delegates from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations will proceed with a meeting in a central Philippine resort province this week despite a foiled attack there by Muslim extremists, officials said Monday.
— The Seattle Times

 

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Cambodia morning newsCambodia Morning News

Compiled by Vat Vin    @vin_vat

 

World Bank Approves $100M in Loans for Schools, Rural Roads
The World Bank approved $100 million in loans to Cambodia to bolster secondary education by improving schools and educators’ qualifications, and to make rural roads more navigable and climate-resilient, according to a statement released on Friday.
The Cambodia Daily (paywall)

Cambodia borrows 8.3 billion U.S. dollars in 23 years: report
The Cambodian government has signed concessional loan agreements in a total amount of 8.3 billion U.S. dollars with bilateral and multilateral partners from 1993 to 2016, according to the Cambodia Public Debt Statistical Bulletin on Monday.
Xinhua

Tepco, Toshiba to manage power grids in Cambodia
Tokyo Electric Power Co. Holdings will team with Toshiba to manage power grids in Cambodia, hoping to secure a new earnings source as the utility grapples with soaring cleanup costs for the Fukushima nuclear plant disaster.
Nikkei Asian Review

Doctor Who Criticized State Health Care Says He Was Denied Medical License
A Cambodian doctor who openly criticized the government health service has claimed he has been denied a license to practice and barred from bringing medical supplies into the country.
VOA

Meet Women Making It Work in a Male-Dominated World
As Cambodia goes through rapid development and economic growth, changes are being felt in the workplace as women look to make their mark in professions traditionally seen as male preserves.
The Cambodia Daily (paywall)

Near the North Korean Border, Cambodians Show Little Concern Over Nuclear War Threat
Cambodians living in South Korea say they are unconcerned the trading of threats between the United States and North Korea.
VOA

CNRP Hopes New Congress Will End Saga With Ministry
The CNRP will hold a snap congress on April 25 to again amend its bylaws to allow for the selection of three vice presidents—its third maneuver to appease the Interior Ministry, which has so far refused to recognize the lawmakers as party leaders, an official said on Monday.
The Cambodia Daily (paywall)

Cambodians remember the fall of Phnom Penh to the Khmer Rouge 42 years ago
Hundreds gathered on Monday (April 17) at Cambodia’s infamous “Killing Field” to mark the 42nd anniversary of the fall of Phnom Penh to the Khmer Rouge regime.
Reuters

New Year Traffic Accidents, Deaths Decrease
Celebrations ushering in the Year of the Rooster witnessed a slight decrease in both traffic accidents and fatalities compared to the previous year, according to a ministry official.
The Cambodia Daily (paywall)

 

Indonesia morning newsIndonesia Morning News

Compiled by Stella-maris Ewudolu    @Estee

 

Go-Jek reportedly raises another round of funding, aims for Southeast Asia expansion
Indonesian ride-hailing startup Go-Jek is in talks with investors to raise a US$1 billion-worth of funding, according to a Wall Street Journal report citing anonymous sources familiar with the process.
— e27

State Audit Board reports findings of 5,810 cases to President Jokowi
The State Audit Board (BPK) has reported to President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) its findings of 5,810 cases, containing 1,393 cases (18 percent) of weaknesses in internal control system and 6,201 cases (82 percent) of non-compliance with the regulations, causing potential losses of Rp19.48 trillion.
— Antara News

Bank Indonesia cracks down on unauthorized money changers, many of which are in Bali
Bank Indonesia, the country’s central bank says it is cracking down on unauthorized money changers across the country, many of which have been operating in Bali.
— Coconuts Jakarta

Jokowi urged to probe Rp 19.48t in potential state losses
The Supreme Audit Agency (BPK) has urged President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo to investigate the agency’s findings on potential state losses worth Rp 19.48 trillion (US$1.47 billion) in 2016.
— The Jakarta Post

Tax Collection Until March Paints Positive Outlook for 2017: Official
The government is confident of meeting its tax target this year on the back of strong collection in the first three months that has so far exceeded that of the same period last year, a senior official said on Sunday (17/04).
— Jakarta Globe

Indonesia To Help Over Export Of Halal Products – Minister Mustapa
Indonesia would find the best method to facilitate the entry of halal products from Malaysia into the republic without having to undergo the tedious process currently, said Malaysian International Trade and Industry Minister Mustapa Mohamed.
— Malaysian Digest

Indonesia startup Brilio embraces shift in media habits driven by millennials
Indonesia is witnessing a new group of hybrid digital media, or platforms, that combine social media and news reporting.
— Deal Street Asia

Lotte’s M’sian unit IPO to raise funds for US$3.5b Indonesian facility
The bulk of proceeds to be raised from the proposed listing of Lotte Chemical Titan Holding Bhd (LCT), a unit of South Korean conglomerate Lotte Group, is to be used to fund the development of a US$3.5 billion (RM15.4 billion) integrated petrochemical facility in Indonesia.
— The Edge Markets MY

Manila Water to submit scaled-up proposals in projects in both Myanmar and Indonesia
MANILA Water Co., the water concessionaire for the East Zone of Metro Manila, said it would submit scaled-up proposals within the third quarter of the year for possible water concessions in Myanmar and Indonesia following the completion of its pilot projects.
— Business Mirror

Indonesia`s exports up 15.68 percent in March 2017
Indonesias exports were up 15.68 percent in March, from US$12.61 billion in the previous month to $14.59 billion, according to Central Bureau of Statistics (BPS) here on Monday.
— Antara News

US Producers Claim Injury from Biodiesel Imports from Argentina, Indonesia
The U.S. Department of Commerce initiated antidumping and countervailing duty investigations aimed at biodiesel imports from Argentina and Indonesia, the department has announced in response to a petition filed by biodiesel industry interests in the United States.
— DTN The Progressive Farmer

Indonesia’s imports up, trade surplus
Indonesian imports rose 17.65 percent to US$13.36 billion in March from US$8.89 billion in February this year, the Central Bureau of Statistic (BPS) said here on Monday.
— Antara News

Indonesia`s Debt to GDP Ratio Lower than Other Countries: Govt
Finance Minister Sri Mulyani said that Indonesia`s debt to GDP ratio is lower than other countries. “Indonesia’s debt [to GDP] ratio is quite high. But not as high as other countries,” she said in South Tangerang on Monday, April 17, 2017.
— Tempo.co

C. Java Governor asks Surakarta palace to negotiate in solving internal conflict
Central Java Governor Ganjar Pranowo has urged concerned parties at the Mangkunegaran Palace in Surakarta to negotiate and prioritize deliberation in resolving the ongoing conflict between Sultan Paku Buwono XIII Hangabehi and his Customary Council.
— The Jakarta Post

MedArbId to host 3rd Annual Symposium for Mediators and Arbitrators in Jakarta
Hundreds of domestic and foreign legal officials, practitioners, corporate counsels, corporations, arbitrators and mediators are expected to join vigorous discussions for the enhancement of arbitration and mediation practices in the whole Asia-Pacific region.
— The Jakarta Post

President Jokowi approves state funding for KPK investigator Novel Baswedan’s acid attack treatment
President Joko Widodo has pledged state funding for the treatment of one of Indonesia’s anti-corruption heroes, Novel Baswedan, who was attacked with acid on April 11.
— Coconuts Jakarta

In search of unicorns
Indonesia-based startup accelerator Kejora Ventures believes Asean now offers the size and scale to produce some hugely successful tech-based businesses.
— Bangkok Post

Banking as Usual, but No Monetary Operations on Election Day
Bank Indonesia, the central bank, announced normal banking activity but no monetary operations for Wednesday (19/04), due to the Jakarta gubernatorial election, an executive said.
— Jakarta Globe

These 3 Malaysian startups are gearing up to enter Indonesia, in search for potential partners
Jakarta-based digital education and training platform Yacademy today introduced the three Malaysian startups that are participating in their Indonesian Market Immersion Program (IMIP) at Kejora HQ, West Jakarta.
— Yahoo News

NU calls for stronger laws against radical groups
A representative of Indonesia’s largest Islamic organization, Nahdlatul Ulama (NU), has deplored President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s administration’s stance against radical groups in Indonesia, suggesting it is too soft to deal with groups that pose a direct threat to the government.
— The Jakarta Post

New Hoong Fatt buys land in Indonesia for RM18m to build new plant
Automotive parts manufacturer New Hoong Fatt Holdings Bhd is buying a 24,575sqm land in West Java, Indonesia for RM17.97 million to set up a new manufacturing plant for further expansion.
— The Edge Markets MY

URI professor awarded $3 million USAID grant to study coral reef fisheries in Indonesia
Food security is a serious concern in Indonesia, where delicate coral reef ecosystems provide fish and livelihood for over three million fishermen. But their catch is declining with many fisheries being overexploited and management of the fishery needs improvement.
— URI Today

Qatar Shows Interest to Enhance Bilateral Cooperation with Indonesia
Qatar has invited Indonesian Vice President Jusuf Kalla to attend the Doha Forum, which will be held from May 14 to 15, 2017, to discuss global democracy and promote peace in the world.
— Netral English

 

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Lao PDR morning newsLao PDR Morning News

Compiled by Vat Vin    @vin_vat

 

Lao Parliament Hails Governmental Cooperation with Vietnam
The cooperation between the Vietnamese and Lao governments has contributed to taking bilateral relations to new heights, said Lao National Assembly Chairwoman, Ms Pany Yathotou.
Lao News Agency

Former President Calls for Agriculture Promotion in Savannakhet
Former President Choummaly Sayasone has urged the authorities and people in Phonsim village, Kaisonephomvihan district, Savannakhet Province to make greater efforts to ensure increased agricultural promotion.
Lao News Agency

Lao Ambassador Commits to Strengthening Laos-Japan Ties
The newly appointed Lao Ambassador to Japan, Mr Virod Sundara, confirmed that he would do his utmost to foster relations between Laos and Japan when presenting his credentials to Japan’s Emperor Akihito on April 11.
Lao News Agency

Celebration of Lao New Year 2560
THE Ambassador of Laos to Brunei Darussalam, Amphay Kindavong, and spouse Phimpha Kindavong yesterday participated in the Lao New Year 2560 celebration.
Borneo Bulletin Online

Celebrating Lao new year
“Happy Lao New Year, who’s ready to party?” blared over the loudspeakers Saturday afternoon in Lanexang Village as more than 1,000 people filtered into the neighborhood to celebrate another new year on the Laotian calendar.
The Daily Iberian

Vientiane’s Adventurous Eats Dinner Is Not for the Squeamish
Cuisine imported from other countries is usually, out of necessity, adapted to the local palate. The original ingredients might not be readily available, or the heat and spice might be more than the average American taste buds can handle.
Eater Philly

Houaphan Mothers Urged to Help Improve Children’s Nutritional Status
Mothers in rural and remote areas in Huaphan Province, particularly those from low income families, have been asked to by the government and international organisations to take part in improving the nutritional status of their children.
Lao News Agency

 

Malaysia morning news

Malaysia Morning News

Compiled by Vat Vin    @vin_vat

 

mTouche says Thai project can hit RM2.6bil revenue
The contract to build, install and operate the SMART4 public phone and WiFi hub terminals for Thailand’s state-owned TOT Public Co Ltd is estimated to be worth RM175.5mil, said mTouche Technology Bhd.
The Star Online

Malaysian palm oil price slides to 8-month low
Malaysian palm oil futures lost early gains, sliding to an eight-month low in late trade on Monday, weighed down by expectations of rising output in top producers Malaysia and Indonesia.
The Star Online

Malaysia’s Axiata Digital invests $16.8m into Swedish insurtech BIMA
BIMA, an insurance technology (insurtech) firm that provides microinsurance to underserved families in emerging markets, has closed $16.8 million from Axiata Digital, the digital services arm of Axiata Group Berhad (Axiata).
Deal Street Asia

Tech stocks in Malaysia hit 10-year high, buoyed by chip boom
As growth in semiconductor usage underpins a 38% surge in Malaysian technology stocks, companies like Vitrox Corp Bhd are expanding.
The Edge Markets

Malaysia March inflation seen hitting 8-yr high of 5.3 pct y/y
Malaysia’s annual inflation rate is expected to rise to 5.3 percent in March, the highest in eight years, a Reuters poll showed.
The Economic Times

Ringgit opens lower against US dollar
The ringgit opened lower against the US dollar today on mild profit-taking following yesterday’s gains.
New Straits Times

PGB to spend RM500 million in current financial year
Petronas Gas Bhd (PGB) is spending more than RM500 million in capital expenditure (capex) in the current financial year ending Dec 31, 2017.
New Straits Times

Govt to build 4,800 units transit studio apartment for youth in Batu, KL, says minister
The Ministry of Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government will build 4,800 units of studio apartment for youth, on its land in Batu district, Kuala Lumpur.
Malay Mail Online

Minister: No halal certs for ‘ham’, ‘bacon’, ‘beer’
Authorities will not issue halal certification for non-alcoholic “beer” or any product that uses “haram”-related names like ham or bacon, minister Datuk Seri Jamil Khir Baharom said today.
Malay Mail Online

Petronas Gas to gain from new leasing deals
Petronas Gas Bhd (PetGas) hopes to gain from leasing agreements once the contracts under the new Gas Supply (amendment) Act 2016 come into effect.
The Star Online

Prasarana eyes development of Brunei metro system
Prasarana Malaysia Bhd is eyeing the Brunei market on the possibility of developing a metro network system there, said its president and group chief executive officer Datuk Seri Azmi Abdul Aziz.
The Star Online

Fundraising event held in Malaysia to support Myanmar women refugees
A four-day fundraising event called Unsung Heroines is being held to support displaced Myanmar women refugees in Malaysia, the Star reported on 15 April.
Mizzima

Malaysia buys more trains from China
THE Malaysian government has purchased more trains to meet increasing public demand for the KTM Komuter service.
The Nation

Digital economy on track for 18pc GDP contribution – MDEC chief
THE digital economy is on track to contribute 18 per cent to the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) this year, said Malaysia Digital Economy Corp (MDEC) chief executive officer Datuk Yasmin Mahmood.
New Straits Times

Ann Joo Resources benefitting from improved demand: Maybank IB Research
Maybank IB Research says there is better earnings clarity for Ann Joo Resources Bhd, and issued a “buy” call on the company, with a target price of RM3.20.
New Straits Times

Selling properties below market price not necessarily bad, industry players say
The property market has bottomed out lower than it did last year but according to experts, this may not be a bad thing as there are still willing buyers for discounted properties.
Malay Mail Online

DPM: Advisers must be prepared to accept views of others
Advisers to the national leader must be open-minded and be prepared to accept the views of others, says Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.
Malay Mail Online

 

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Myanmar morning newsMyanmar Morning News

Compiled by Stella-maris Ewudolu    @Estee

 

1,200 crimes, 285 dead, 1,073 injured nationwide during Thingyan Festival
Despite security efforts, there were still numerous cases of accidents and crimes during the water festival. an increase from last year’s total.
— Global New Light Of Myanmar

Foreigners not much interested in Myanmar condominium
Foreigners have shown little interest in Myanmar’s condominiums on account of their inability to meet the condominium’s criteria and the weakness of law, according to an analysis by the real estate website House.com.mm. According to the new Condominium Law, foreigners have the right to buy condominiums, but the lack of quality has led foreign expatriates to lose interest, the website found.
— Global New Light Of Myanmar

Massive Fire Destroys Market in Northern Maungdaw
A massive fire destroyed the market at the village of ‘Zin Paing Nya’ in northern Maungdaw yesterday (on Apr 16) afternoon.
— Rohingya Vision

Cyclone Maarutha makes landfall in Myanmar
Cyclone Maarutha made landfall on Myanmar’s Rakhine coast on Monday night.
— Aljazeera

Myanmar keeps world guessing on refugees
The international community and particularly the Association of Southeast Nations deserve to be fully apprised regarding the fate of thousands of displaced people in Myanmar’s Rakhine state. Instead, all we’ve had is a worrying government announcement that refugee camps were being shut down. Nothing has been said about what happens to them next.
— The Nation

Myanmar’s ‘Great Game’ enters volatile new phase
In late March the US naval ship Fall River—a Spearhead-class expeditionary fast transport vessel—arrived at Yangon’s Thilawa Port as part of a disaster preparedness training exercise. The port call, the first by a US navy vessel in Myanmar since World War II, was referred to by American officials as a “goodwill visit.”
— Asia Times

Manila Water to submit scaled-up proposals in projects in both Myanmar and Indonesia
MANILA Water Co., the water concessionaire for the East Zone of Metro Manila, said it would submit scaled-up proposals within the third quarter of the year for possible water concessions in Myanmar and Indonesia following the completion of its pilot projects.
— Business Mirror

Fundraising event held in Malaysia to support Myanmar women refugees
A four-day fundraising event called Unsung Heroines is being held to support displaced Myanmar women refugees in Malaysia, the Star reported on 15 April.
— Mizzima News

 

Philippines morning newsPhilippines Morning News

Compiled by Stella-maris Ewudolu    @Estee

 

Remittances hit $2.17B in February
Cash sent home by Filipinos overseas through banks stayed at the $2-billion level for the 13th straight month in February even as year-on-year growth slowed on seasonality.
— Inquirer.net

Manila Water to submit scaled-up proposals in projects in both Myanmar and Indonesia
MANILA Water Co., the water concessionaire for the East Zone of Metro Manila, said it would submit scaled-up proposals within the third quarter of the year for possible water concessions in Myanmar and Indonesia following the completion of its pilot projects.
— Business Mirror

Lopez Holdings net income rises to P6.557 in 2016
Lopez Holdings said Tuesday its net income attributable to shareholders rose 6 percent in 2016 to P6.557 billion.
— ABS-CBN

Marcos pays P36-M for poll protest vs Robredo
Former Senator Bongbong Marcos went to the Supreme Court (SC) on Monday to pay more than P30 million for his election protest against Vice President Leni Robredo.
— ABS-CBN

Tight supply pushing up pork prices
The Samahang Industriya ng Agrikultura (Sinag) is calling on the Department of Agriculture (DA) to study the industry gaps that are resulting in an increase in the prices of pork.
— The Philippine Star

US, Philippines to conduct military drills amid tensions with Duterte
The U.S. military will begin annual military drills with Philippine forces next month, despite tense relations with President Rodrigo Duterte, AFP reports.
— Military Times

Duterte vows hospitals for OFWs
President Rodrigo Duterte has vowed to put up hospitals for overseas filipino workers (OFWs) in countries where they work.
— The Manila Times

Traders warned: Don’t create artificial rice shortage
Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol yesterday warned traders against triggering an artificial rice shortage to force the government to allow the importation of the country’s staple.
— The Philippine Star

Human rights issue could have wider PHL-EU trade impact
THE REPERCUSSIONS of human rights concerns in the Philippines on the country’s trade with the European Union (EU) could spill beyond the GSP+ scheme, the bloc’s envoy to the Philippines signaled last week.
— BusinessWorld Online

Shares track Wall Street gains as North Korea concerns loom
Share prices opened higher on Tuesday, tracking gains on Wall Street, even as concerns over North Korea loomed.
— ABS-CBN

GT Capital to hike stake in Metrobank
Conglomerate GT Capital Holdings Inc. will increase its interest in banking arm Metropolitan Bank and Trust Co. to 36.092 percent by buying the 9.622 percent interest held by various Ty-owned companies for P24.72 billion.
— Inquirer.net

Dengue vaccine now in the Philippines
The world’s first dengue vaccine is now commercially available in the Philippines
— Inquirer.net

De Lima seeks punishment for child exploitation
Detained Sen. Leila de Lima is pushing for the immediate passage of the bill seeking to impose stiffer penalties on those who involve children in their criminal activities.
— The Philippine Star

Duterte wins Time’s 2017 most influential poll
President Rodrigo Duterte topped Time magazine’s poll on the world’s most influential people, a feat that the Palace attributed to his agenda of helping the poor.
— The Manila Times

BIR likely to order Mighty Corp. closure next month
The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) said the government would likely issue a closure order for the manufacturing facilities controlled by embattled cigarette-maker Mighty Corp. next month.
— Manila Bulletin

Four OFWs killed in road accident in UAE to receive financial, livelihood aids
Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Secretary Silvestre Bello III said on Monday that the bereaved families of four Filipino workers overseas who died in a vehicular accident in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UAE) are entitled to financial assistance from the government.
— Manila Bulletin

 

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Singapore morning newsSingapore Morning News

Compiled by Stella-maris Ewudolu    @Estee

 

Singapore home sales at four-year high
Singapore home sales surged to the highest monthly total for nearly four years in March, a month in which the government rolled back some property curbs in March following a three-year slide in prices.
— Bangkok Post

Procter & Gamble to invest US$100m in its first digital innovation centre in Singapore
PROCTER & Gamble (P&G) will invest more than US$100 million over the next five years to set up its first digital innovation centre outside the US in Singapore.
— The Business Times

$34m charm offensive to attract visitors to Singapore
With competition for the tourist dollar fiercer than ever, the Changi Airport Group (CAG), Singapore Airlines (SIA) and the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) have renewed their agreement to join forces and woo travellers, in their biggest commitment to date.
— The Straits Times

Developers’ sales in Singapore soar to 1,780 private homes in March: URA data
DEVELOPERS in Singapore sold 1,780 private homes in March 2017, up nearly 82 per cent from the 979 units they moved in the previous month and also 111 per cent higher than the 843 units they sold in March 2016.
— The Business Times

March exports power ahead to score fifth straight monthly gain
SINGAPORE’S exports appear to be firmly back on the growth path, with non-oil domestic shipments powering to a fifth straight monthly rise in March.
— The Business Times

Singapore: Frasers acquires majority stake in Geneba Properties for $335m
Frasers Centrepoint Limited (FCL) today announced that it is acquiring an 86.56 per cent stake in Geneba Properties N.V. from Catalyst RE Coöperatief U.A. for EUR 315.9 million ($335.4 million).
— Deal Street Asia

KrisFlyer UOB accounts expected to bring in deposits of S$1.5b
UOB on Tuesday said it expects to bring in deposits of about S$1.5 billion in the next five years via a new savings account tied to miles redemption through Singapore Airlines’ (SIA) KrisFlyer programme.
— The Business Times

Singapore Visa Clampdown Seen As Big Worry For Indian IT
The tightening of the H-1B regime has grabbed a lot of spotlight but the visa issue should not be looked at as ‘be all and end all’ of the entire IT industry’s growth, Nasscom President, R Chandrashekhar said.
— NDTV Profit

Fund Focus: Cocoon Capital abandons traditional VC approach as it targets B2B startups
Angel investors – William Klippgen and Michael Blakey – who recently launched Cocoon Capital, a US$7 million venture fund in Singapore, believe they are uniquely positioned to fund early stage B2B companies in the region.
— Deal Street Asia

MAS partners UNCDF to drive financial inclusion in Asean
THE Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has sealed a partnership with a United Nations unit to encourage the development and access of digital financial services in Asean.
— The Business Times

Singapore shares open 0.63% up on Tuesday
SINGAPORE share prices rebounded on Tuesday morning as economic and geopolitical woes eased.
— The Business Times

Maritime Gallery reopens after nearly $2m overhaul
There is no need for a licence to captain a boat at the revamped Singapore Maritime Gallery.
— The New Paper

New 1,800-bed hospital to open in Woodlands from 2022
Work on Woodlands’ first hospital, slated to serve more than 935,000 residents in the north started, started on Tuesday (April 18) with Health Minister Gan Kim Yong officiating at the groundbreaking ceremony.
— Today Online

Younger Singaporeans choose YouTube over TV, says Google Singapore and Kantar TNS study
Singaporeans aged 16 to 34 prefer YouTube to TV according to a study by Google Singapore and Kantar TNS, with older demographics visiting YouTube at least once a month.
— The Drum

Billionaire Taizo Son ditches Japan to move to Singapore, plans $100m for SEA startups
Taizo Son, who built his fortune on hit smartphone game Puzzle & Dragons, has relocated to the city-state from Tokyo and plans to invest $100 million in Southeast Asia within five years.
— Deal Street Asia

After a 9-month extended deployment to Singapore, LCS Crew 204 is back home
The littoral combat ship program’s Crew 204, stuck in Singapore for months, is back with their families now after being detached last week.
— Navy Times

Artificial intelligence, robotics to be part of patient care at new Woodlands hospital
The Woodlands Health Campus (WHC), the first hospital in Woodlands, is expected to use the widespread adoption of technology to improve the patient care experience.
— Channel NewsAsia

Demand for Malaysian durians in China may mean fewer, costlier fruit for Singapore
Durian lovers here may have to fork out more to get their hands on the king of fruit, with Singapore sellers reporting that Malaysian farmers are exporting more of their harvest to China and Chinese tourists buying the fruit at the Malaysians farms they visit.
— Channel NewsAsia

 

Thailand morning newsThailand Morning News

Compiled by John Le Fevre    @photo_journ

 

BMA bans all street food across Bangkok this year
STREET FOOD vendors will disappear from Bangkok by the end of the year in the interests of cleanliness, safety and order, the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) says.
– The Nation

NESDB optimistic about Thai economy after 2017
The Office of the National Economic and Social Development Board (NESDB) has guaranteed that the Thai economy will recover after 2017, with money flowing into the pockets of its people along with vibrant tourism, exports, and agricultural activity.
– NNT

GDP to grow by 3.7% in second quarter
An economist from Rangsit University has forecast that Thailand’s gross domestic product (GDP) in the first quarter of this year will increase by 3.4% due to tourism and government spending.
– NNT

India, Thailand help Huawei to register 32% growth in 2016
Huawei India along with Thailand played a major role in the global annual revenue growth of 32% at $75.1 billion in 2016, said Huawei India CEO Jay Chen.
– Deccan Herald

Alibaba, WHA in estate talks
SET-listed WHA Corporation Plc, Thailand’s largest developer of built-to-suit logistics facilities, is in talks with Alibaba over the giant Chinese e-commerce company’s plans to buy land to develop its…
– Bangkok Post

Amata Corporation optimistic about impact of Eastern Special Economic Zone Act
Amata Corporation has expressed its confidence that the Eastern Special Economic Zone Act will jump-start investment in the Thai economy.
– NNT

mTouche says Thai project can hit RM2.6bil revenue
The contract to build, install and operate the SMART4 public phone and WiFi hub terminals for Thailand’s state-owned TOT Public Co Ltd is estimated to be worth RM175.5mil, said mTouche Technology Bhd.
–The Star Online

MRTA gears up to sign monorail deals
The Mass Rapid Transit Authority (MRTA) aims to sign construction contracts early next month for the two key electric rail lines that will carry people from surrounding provinces to the capital.
– Bangkok Post

INET commits further Bt1.2 bn to data centre
NTERNET Thailand (INET) plans to spend a further Bt1.2 billion on a data centre in Saraburi province this year and set up an online marketplace for what it calls hybrid cloud services.
– The Nation

Council of State challenges two-year payback mandate 
The Council of State has proposed loosening the requirement of a two-year payback for government when it borrows to finance any populist policy, aiming to keep subsequent administrations from running out…
– Bangkok Post

CIMBT sets sights on guiding Bt30 bn debentures
CIMB Thai Bank (CIMBT) is stepping up its push into financial advisory services and expects its corporate clients to issue debentures of up to Bt30 billion this year.
– The Nation

Businesses urged to install EDC machines in exchange for incentives
The Department of Business Development (DBD) has reminded entrepreneurs to install an electronic data capture (EDC) machine in order to be entitled to tax privileges.
– NNT

Reconsidering nuclear
The devastating accident at Japan’s Fukushima nuclear power plant in 2011 sparked worldwide fears and forced many countries, including Thailand, to scrap their nuclear power development plans.
– Bangkok Post

NFA denies making backdoor negotiations with Thailand
The National Food Authority (NFA) denied reports that the agency has initiated backdoor negotiations with Thailand for the importation of 1.3 million metric tons of rice.
– ABS-CBN

NewGen starts up at U-tapao
NewGen Airways launched its maiden service yesterday out of U-tapao airport, which the airline has adopted as its new local base
– Bangkok Post

Realty in Thon Buri set to grow
THE PROPERTY market in Bangkok’s Thon Buri area is poised for growth due to its population density and the near-completion of the extension of the mass-transit system into the area, according to research by Plus Property Co, a property-agency arm of Sansiri.
– The Nation

Rama IV to level up
TCC Group will lead the charge in the massive transformation of the already bustling thoroughfare, though critical transport infrastructure remains a pressing concern.
– Bangkok Post

Thailand’s first LEED Platinum “vertical village” to rise in Bangkok
Thailand’s wealthiest man, Charoen Sirivadhanabhakdi, has teamed up with architecture firm SOM to plan One Bangkok, a $3.5 billion project that will be first in Thailand to target LEED Platinum certification for Neighborhood Development.
– Inhabitat

City seeks waste awareness
City Hall has been sprung into action after an image of the Klong Toey canal covered in garbage drew strong public criticism.
– Bangkok Post

Free bus service arranged to take returning bus passengers to BTS station
State-run Transport Company on Monday arranged for several buses to send returning passngers at Morchit bus terminal to the BTS elevated train station at Chatuchak park without any charges.
– Thai PBS

Seeking status
Thailand has long seen a great influx of foreign migrants and workers from its surrounding neighbours, such as Myanmar or Laos. It is also home to many smaller ethnic minority groups such as the Karen, Hmong or Lahu. However, Thailand has never had the best track record when it comes to dealing with these foreign or ethnic minorities, especially when it comes to documentation. This poses a problem to these minorities, many of whom have lived in Thailand for decades, as they don’t have the legal documents and identification often required in various situations, from medical or school applications to basic protection of law.
— Bangkok Post

 

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Vietnam morning newsVietnam Morning News

Compiled by John Le Fevre    @photo_journ

 

Eight anti-corruption task forces to be formed
Eight task forces will be established to investigate corruption cases that have received public attention in 20 provinces and cities. The decision was adopted today by the Anti-Corruption Central Steering Committee, chaired by Party General Secretary Nguyễn Phú Trọng.
– Viet Nam News

Steel industry to grow, export pressures high
The steel industry is expected to maintain its recent double-digit growth this year, helped by the recovery of the property market, but it will also face the pressure of trade defense instruments in import markets and competition from cheap steel.
– Viet Nam News bizhub

VietinBank targets increasing before-tax profit
The Vietnam Commercial Bank for Industry and Trade (VietinBank) targeted increasing before-tax profit to 8.8 trillion VND (382.6 million USD) this year, up 231 billion VND (10.04 billion USD), during its annual shareholders’ meeting in Hanoi on April 17.
– VietnamPlus

HCM City’s credit growth rises 3% in Q1
Outstanding loans in HCM City totalled around VND1.5 quadrillion (US$65.8 billion) in the first quarter of 2017, a three per cent rise over the end of 2016.
– Viet Nam News bizhub

ADB: Vietnamese economy to climb 6.5% in 2017
According to ADB, manufacturing will be boosted by the continued opening of new foreign-invested factories on the back of a record FDI disbursement of US$15.8 billion last year, up 9% year-on-year.
– Hanoitimes

HCM City asks State for additional $2 billion of ODA
HCM City authorities have asked the Ministry of Planning and Investment and Ministry of Finance to allocate an additional VNĐ48.762 trillion (US$2.14 billion) of official development assistance (ODA) in the next three years, with VNĐ8 trillion ($352.33 million) allocated for this year.
– Viet Nam News

Students lack skills to meet job demands
Only 30% of graduates are able to do their work sufficiently well for their employers, said Nguyen Thi Thanh Huong from the ICT Department of Navigos Search, provider of executive search and management consultancy services in Vietnam.
– Vietnam Times

March sales of cars up 52 per cent
The Vietnamese auto market sold nearly 26,900 cars in March, an increase of 52 per cent compared with the previous month, according to a Vietnam Automobile Manufacturers’ Association report.
– Viet Nam News bizhub

Vietnam’s car imports jump 34 pct y/y in Q1 on tax cuts
Vietnam’s car imports have risen a staggering 34.4 percent from a year ago to 26,500 units, with more than half of them coming from low-tariff markets in Southeast Asia, customs figures show.
– VnExpress.net

New coffee project to benefit 15,000 farmers
A project to develop the Buon Ma Thuot coffee brand is expected to benefit more than 15,000 farmers who live in a poor commune in the Central Highlands province of Dak Lak.
– Vietnam Times

New project to enhance solar power development
Specifically, the organizations and individuals will be allowed to mobilize capital from domestic and foreign organizations and individuals to develop solar power projects in line with current regulations. Solar power projects will enjoy tax exemption for imported equipment unproduced domestically and land allocation incentives.
– Hanoitimes

VNR inks deal with Saigon Newport Corp
The Vietnam Railway Corporation (VNR) will ink a deal with the Saigon Newport Corporation this April to build two inland container depots (ICDs) in Binh Duong Province and Ha Noi.
– Viet Nam News bizhub

Hanoi facilitate to attract Japanese investors
The strategic partnership between Vietnam and Japan is seeing its finest and most powerful development. The Capital of Hanoi has deployed many solutions to continue attracting investment in all fields, including tourism from the Japanese market.
– Hanoitimes

Vietnam’s soybean imports to rebound in 2017 – USDA
Vietnam is forecast to import 1.7 million tons of soybeans this year, a rebound of 6 percent after a fall in last year’s overseas purchases following higher demand for animal feed production and from the food processing sector, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has said.
– VnExpress.net

FPT Software to earn $200 million from auto-tech solutions
FPT Software expects to earn US$200 million through the sale of automotive technology solutions and employ 8,000 people by 2020, the company said.
– Viet Nam News bizhub

3 titanium companies ordered to stop operations
The central province’s environmental department has ordered three titanium exploitation companies to suspend operations, which have continued for the last three years despite expired licences.
– Viet Nam News

Vietinbank delays its MA with PGBank
Vietinbank has not completed acquiring PGBank as the two sides have not finished all required procedures and got approval from the authorities.
– Viet Nam News bizhub

Techcombank to raise charter capital by VND5 trillion
The Vietnam Technological and Commercial Joint Stock Bank (Techcombank) will raise its charter capital by VND5 trillion (US$220 million) to nearly VND14 trillion ($616 million) this year through the sale of shares.
– Viet Nam News bizhub

PV Gas lowers 2017 business targets by 15-27%
Shareholders of PV Gas (GAS) has approved the company’s plans to lower its business targets in 2017 by 15-27 per cent year-on-year, given the global instability and volatile oil market.
– Viet Nam News bizhub

Handbook helps banks weigh projects
The State Bank of Viet Nam has coordinated with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) to prepare a handbook on social and environmental risk assessment for 10 economic sectors serving credit operations of commercial banks.
– Viet Nam News bizhub

Natural disasters cost Việt Nam $1.7 billion
Việt Nam needs to improve the quality of weather forecasting and enhance international co-operation to prepare for natural disasters, Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc has said.
– Viet Nam News

Vietnamese tourists are as bad as Chinese visitors, official says
It seems Vietnamese people should read the etiquette guide for tourists more carefully before waving their fingers at foreigners.
– VnExpress.net

 

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Asean Morning News is the most comprehensive selection of reports on what you need to know from around the Asean Economic Community (AEC) published. All articles are hand curated by the team at AEC News Today. It is published M-F by AEC News Today: Governance, not government; policies not politics.

 

 

 

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