Asean Morning News For April 28

The most comprehensive #Asean Morning News Roundup published

Asean Morning News For April 28
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Asean morning newsAsean Morning News

Compiled by AEC News Today    @aecnewstoday

 

ICAO: Asean’s airports subpar for tourist economy 

Asean countries need to accelerate investment in basic infrastructure development to accommodate the 6.5% annual growth in international tourist arrivals, says the head of International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).
– Bangkok Post

Bring down tariff to zero, Najib tells Asean
The 10-member Association of Southeast Nations (ASEAN) must work vigorously to bring down tariffs in the region to zero and eliminate non-tariff barriers, as there is no other alternative to create a seamless economy, says Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
– The Star Online

Single visa for ASEAN seen to boost tourism
A European Union-style single visa for Southeast Asia is expected to spur tourism in one of the world’s emerging economic growth centers, officials said Thursday
– ABS-CBN

ASEAN now Philippines’ biggest trading partner
The Philippines has increased trade with other Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) members and has enormous potential for capturing half of world market, a testament it is benefiting from its partnership with nine other ASEAN members, an economist said.
– Concept Central

Southeast Asia Warms to China as Cherished Asean Unity Is Restored
This time a year ago, Southeast Asian nations risked descending into squabbling over how to handle China’s assertiveness in their region.
– Bloomberg

ASEAN biz council: Large companies must support MSMEs
For micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to reap the fruits of Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) integration, large companies must “embrace” them as part of the business ecosystem, ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ABAC) Chairperson Joey Concepcion said Thursday.
– GMA News Online

Time for Asean to combat climate change
With the Philippines hosting activities marking the 50th founding anniversary of Asean, it’s time a regionwide climate change programme was advanced.
– The Straits Times

Five hundred NGOs push for Asean ban on microplastics in cosmetics
More than 500 environmental and consumer groups have called on the governments of the ten Asean member states to ban the use of microplastics in personal care and cosmetic products (PCCPs).
— Chemical Watch

Things To Watch In The 2017 Trafficking In Persons Report
In early 2015, mass graves in the Wang Kelian jungles containing the bodies of at least 139 people were discovered at the border of Malaysia and Thailand. The bodies in the graves were mostly of Rohingya refugees and Bangladeshis who may have been victims of trafficking. Investigations are under way, but so far, despite suspicions that suggest Malaysian involvement, not a single Malaysian has been convicted.
– Forbes

ASEAN’s position on North Korea ‘clear and consistent’: Sec-Gen
ASEAN’s position on the ongoing tensions on the Korean Peninsula is “very clear and consistent”, Secretary-General Le Luong Minh said on Friday (Apr 28).
– Channel NewsAsia

WHO official identifies medical barriers in low-income countries
The top 10 diseases have shifted from communicable to non-communicable sicknesses such as strokes and asthma, thanks to the worldwide use of antibiotics and vaccines as well as improved living standard, an expert said Wednesday.
– Korea Biomedical Review

North Korea seeks ASEAN help in row with US
North Korea has appealed to Southeast Asian countries for support in its row with the United States to prevent what it warned could be a “nuclear holocaust,” according to a letter obtained by AFP.
— The Philippine Star

Asean backs Philippines infra program
The Philippines has taken the limelight in Southeast Asia not only as the host of the ASEAN Summit this year, but also as a center of infrastructure development in the region given the government’s aggressive infrastructure push.
— The Philippine Star

Duterte: Arbitral ruling not an issue for Asean
President Duterte on Thursday said it was pointless discussing at the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) summit the Philippines’ victory over China in the South China Sea dispute, and no one dared pressure Beijing anyway.
— Inquirer.net

 

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Cambodia morning newsCambodia Morning News

Compiled by Vat Vin    @vin_vat

 

 

CNRP Asks Government to Investigate Angkor Bribe Claims
Culture and Fine Arts Minister Phoeung Sakona said on Thursday that she would
investigate allegations by a senior opposition lawmaker that the authority managing the world famous Angkor Archeological Park is extorting villagers and making sweetheart land lease deals.
The Cambodia Daily (paywall)

NGOs Decry ‘Chilling Effects’ Of Rights Workers’ Jailings
When a sex scandal involving then-deputy opposition leader Kem Sokha broke in March last year, it led within weeks to the jailing of five of Cambodia’s foremost current and former rights advocates on bribery-related charges.
The Cambodia Daily (paywall)

Press freedom declines: RSF report
Cambodia’s press freedom ranking has fallen four spots compared to last year, to 132 out of 180 countries, according to Reporters Without Borders’ (RSF) latest World Press Freedom Index.
The Phnom Penh Post

Prince Central Plaza completes construction
Recently, Neak Ouknha Chen Zhi, board director of Prince Real Estate (Cambodia) Group, accompanied by Mr. Qiu Guo Xing, Vice President of Board Executive of engineering ,and team contractor representatives made an eight-day visit to the construction site to supervise projects such as Prince Plaza Center, Modern Plaza , Prince Club Project, Prince Time Hotel, and Koh Takev in Sihanoukville province.
— The Phnom Penh Post

‘HUMAN RIGHTS NOBEL’ NOMINATION FOR JAILED CAMBODIANS SHINES LIGHT ON STIFLING OF DISSENT
If Cambodian human rights worker Lim Mony wants to sleep at night, she must pay: up to US$200 a month to secure half a metre of space in the jail cell she shares with 39 other women.
South China Morning Post

China, Cambodia vow to further enhance ties
China and Cambodia agreed on Thursday to push forward their comprehensive, strategic partnership of cooperation.
– Xinhua

Pig farmers form taskforce to curb illicit smuggling
Cambodia’s pig farmers created a new taskforce yesterday to combat pig smuggling along Cambodia’s borders that is leading to falling prices for domestic producers.
– The Phnom Penh Post

Hun Sen Defends Spotty Record on Cambodians Working Abroad
Prime Minister Hun Sen on Thursday defended his government’s often-criticized record on trying to find work for Cambodian citizens overseas, claiming he was working hard to find jobs in the Middle East for the country’s Muslims.
The Cambodia Daily (paywall)

Dispute Over Support for Iconic Khmer Rouge Site Prompts Funding Rethink
The head of the Documentation Center of Cambodia has called on the Khmer Rouge tribunal to include one of the regime’s most iconic sites in its list of reparations.
VOA

Farmers Told to Increase Vegetable Production to Cut Imports
Farmers must increase organic vegetable production in order to meet local demand, agriculture officials said.
VOA

PM Nguyen Xuan Phuc sends thanks to Cambodian counterpart
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has sent a letter to his Cambodian counterpart Samdech Techo Hun Sen, expressing thanks to the Prime Minister, leaders and people of Cambodia for their warm welcome during his successful visit to Cambodia from April 24-26.
– VIETNAMNET Bridge

Lawmaker Long Ry Probed; RFA Issues Defiant Statement
Opposition lawmaker Long Ry became the first witness to be questioned by the Phnom Penh Municipal Court on Thursday morning over accusations that Radio Free Asia journalist Huot Khin Vuthy falsely identified himself while accompanying Mr. Ry and CNRP Vice President Mu Sochua on a prison visit last week.
The Cambodia Daily (paywall)

In Former Khmer Rouge Stronghold, a Lack of Basic Utilities Raises Doubts Over Support for CPP
Kandal Krom is a small village in the former Khmer Rouge stronghold of Anlong Veng near Cambodia’s border with Thailand.
VOA

Hun Sen Tells US to Stop Deporting Ethnic Cambodian Felons to His Country
Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen called on the United States Thursday to end its practice of forcibly deporting convicts with Cambodian heritage to the Southeast Asian nation, a policy he said “splits up families.”
Radio Free Asia

Cambodia’s Hun Sen asks US to stop deporting criminals
Cambodian leader Hun Sen has called on the United States to stop forcibly deporting convicts with Cambodian heritage to the Southeast Asian nation, saying they should revise a policy that splits up families.
— SBS

The rise of millennials and implications for Phnom Penh’s real estate sector
Phnom Penh is currently preparing to host The World Economic Forum on ASEAN 2017. It is the first time Cambodia will have hosted the group, which is made up of some of the world’s most influential leaders from the world of politics and business.
The Phnom Penh Post

Youk Chhang: A Cambodian National Treasure
It is no coincidence that Youk Chhang is Cambodia’s most trusted civic leader. Leading by example, he taught a nation how to forgive without forgetting. Like Angkor Wat and Tonle Sap Lake, Chhang is nothing less than a Cambodian national treasure.
— The Diplomat

No immediate plan to change returnee policy
Despite the Foreign Ministry reiterating its request to suspend and
renegotiate its repatriation agreement with the US – which allows for the deportation of Cambodians with criminal convictions living in the States back to the Kingdom – the timetable for such a plan remains uncertain.
The Phnom Penh Post

 

Indonesia morning newsIndonesia Morning News

Compiled by Stella-maris Ewudolu    @Estee

 

 

Agriculture ministry to create 80,000 hectares of new rice fields
The Agriculture Ministry has expressed its optimism that it is able to create some 80,000 hectares of new rice fields this year as targeted by the government as part of the country’s food security program.
— The Jakarta Post

Gov’t to Develop 10 Destinations to Become Centers for MICE Tourism
The Ministry of Tourism plans to develop 10 destinations in Indonesia to become leading centers for meetings, incentives, conventions and exhibitions, or MICE, the ministry said in a statement released on Thursday (27/04).
— Jakarta Globe

CIMB Niaga posts RM208.7mil consolidated net profit
PT Bank CIMB Niaga Tbk reported an unaudited consolidated net profit of 640 billion rupiah (RM208.7mil) in the first quarter (Q1) of 2017, which represented a 137.9% year-on-year (y-o-y) growth.
— The Star Online

SGInnovate collaborates with VC firm to set up landing pad helping startups expand from Indonesia to Singapore and vice versa
SGInnovate BASH (Build Amazing Start-ups Here) is collaborating with EV Hive, an Indonesia-based coworking space, to build a landing pad for companies from Indonesia and Singapore to enter into each other’s markets. EV Hive is managed by East Ventures (EV), an early-stage venture capital firm with offices in Jakarta, Tokyo, and San Fransisco, which has invested in 150 companies across Asia and the US, focusing on commerce, social, game, SAAS, and mobile services.
— Open Gov

Female clerics declare fatwa on child marriage in Indonesia
Female clerics on Thursday issued an unprecedented fatwa against child marriage in Indonesia in a bid to stop young girls becoming brides in the world’s most populous Muslim country.
— Astro Awani

Aneka Gas Industri to Raise Rp 400b From Bond Sale in May
Aneka Gas Industri, Indonesia’s largest supplier of industrial gas, is planning to raise Rp 400 billion ($30 million) from the sale of conventional bonds and Islamic bonds, also known as sukuk, in May to refinance debt.
— Jakarta Globe

Ministry closes 43,000 cooperatives
Cooperatives and Small and Medium Enterprises Minister Anak Agung Gede Ngurah Puspayoga has issued decrees to close 43,000 inactive cooperatives.
— The Jakarta Post

Maybank Indonesia records higher Q1 Patami
Maybank Indonesia’s net profit after tax and minority interests (Patami) rose 10.4% to 490.1 billion rupiah in the first quarter ended March 31 from 443.9 billion rupiah in the same quarter last year.
— The Star Online

Trump tower fated not to rise in Indonesian isle of the gods
Thousands of people flock daily to the centuries-old, sacred Hindu temple at Tanah Lot, a rock formation that juts into the Indian Ocean. An island at high tide and flanked by sheer cliffs, it’s among Bali’s most photographed sites, particularly for the mesmerizing sunsets that transform the waters into a shimmering orange vista.
— WBT

Indonesia-Philippines sea border pact ratified
Indonesia’s Parliament on Thursday (April 27) ratified a landmark sea border agreement with the Philippines, which sets the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) boundaries between the two countries in the Mindanao and Celebes seas.
— The Straits Times

Freeport readies first Grasberg copper exports after 15-week halt
Freeport McMoRan Inc is preparing three copper concentrate export shipments from its giant Grasberg mine in Indonesia after a 15-week outage, sources with direct knowledge of the matter said.
— Hellenic Shipping News Worldwide

Exporters can save 68% of shipping cost with new route to Indonesia
Exporters from Mindanao can save up to 68 percent of shipping cost with the new Davao-GenSan-Bitung roll on/roll off (RORO) shipping route, said to be the cheapest and fastest route between Mindanao and Indonesia.
— Minda News

93 Countries to Question Indonesia`s Human Rights Violations
As many as 93 countries have signed up for United Nation`s human rights board where they will question Indonesia’s human rights enforcements in the Universal Periodic Review (UPR).
— Tempo.co

Asian Capital Markets Incl Indonesia Present Huge Potential
The economies of South and Southeast Asia are all in their own unique stages of development, and each capital market faces a different set of challenges. A common theme, however, is that new business opportunities are cropping up across the region.
— Netral English

Indonesia‘s Investment of Both Foreign, Domestic Set at IDR678 Tln
The Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM) has set the domestic and foreign investment target for 2017 at IDR678 trillion.
— Netral English

MAN Diesel & Turbo to supply power for gold mine in Indonesia
MAN Diesel & Turbo is to deliver and install four MAN 18V32/40 gensets for a power plant of the Indonesian energy company PT Sumberdaya Sewatama (Sewatama). The power plant will supply one of the world’s largest gold mines, Martabe, with up to 24 MW of electric power. The four-stroke engines will eliminate an acute energy bottleneck and ensure a stable supply to cover the requirements of the mine in Batang Toru province in the north of the Indonesian island of Sumatra.
— PennEnergy

Indonesia climbs six spots in 2017 press freedom ranking
Indonesia has climbed six notches from its previous place in the 2017 World Press Freedom Index released by Reporters Without Borders (RSF) on Wednesday.
— Eleven

 

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Lao PDR morning newsLao PDR Morning News

Compiled by Vat Vin    @vin_vat

 

 

Cigarettes must bear health warning labels in Laos from May
The Lao Ministry of Health (MoH) has said as of May 1, all cigarette products of all brands, either domestically made or imported for commercial purposes in Laos, must be affixed with health warnings covering 75 percent of the packaging.
Xinhua

Lao food prices higher than neighbours
The prices of food staples in Laos are still around 10-20 percent higher compared to neighbouring countries especially Thailand and Vietnam, the National Assembly (NA) was informed.
Vientiane Times

Vietnamese PM’s visit spurs further cooperation
The first official visit to Laos by Vietnam’s Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has proved fruitful as the two governments have inked deals worth millions of dollars.
Vientiane Times

TVR Lao to Build Housing Estate in Vientiane
The TVR Lao International Company is developing a real estate project, building affordable houses for Vientiane residents.
Lao News Agency

Finance Minister Says Taxes Cannot be Collected in Cash
The Minister of Finance, Mr Somdy Douangdy, stated at the ongoing 3rd Ordinary Session of the National Assembly on Wednesday that the government has stopped allowing tax officers receive tax payments in cash directly from taxpayers, as several new mechanisms have been developed to ensure tax payment can be made through banking systems and digital technology.
Lao News Agency

Vietnamese man faces death over meth trafficking from Laos
A Ho Chi Minh City court has sentenced a Vietnamese man to death for trafficking over 6 kilograms (13 lbs) of crystal methamphetamine from Laos into Vietnam, while another two men received life sentences for the same offense, the Tuoi Tre (Youth) daily reported.
VnExpress International

Ministry suspends licensing of gas stations, oil warehouses
The Ministry of Industry and Commerce has announced it will temporarily suspend the registration and licensing of currently unregistered gas stations and oil warehouses.
Vientiane Times

Gov’t to get tough with dishonest land concession holders
The government will use tougher measures to regulate concession projects by withdrawing land if no progress is made on the proposed project, while also pushing for authorities at various levels to participate in the process.
Vientiane Times

Gov’t Sees Budget Deficit of 5,787 Billion kip
Lao government met a budget deficit totaling 5,787 billion kip (USD 787.25 million) last fiscal year, despite a revenue collection of 26,159 billion kip (USD 3.24 billion), the Minister of Planning and Investment, Mr Souphanh Keomixay, said at the ongoing ordinary session of the NA this week in Vientiane Capital.
Lao News Agency

MoH: Cigarette Products Must Have Health Warning Labels
The Ministry of Health (MoH) has said that as of May 1, all cigarette products of all brands, either domestically made or imported for commercial purposes in Laos, must be affixed with health warnings covering 75% of the packaging.
Lao News Agency

Veterans’ Stories: Pilot participated in helicopter assault in Laos
on Betts spent more than 30 years in the Army, beginning in 1968 when he volunteered to serve in the Vietnam War.
— Sarasota Herald-Tribune

Laos: Southeast Asia’s forgotten paradise
Paired with a relaxed atmosphere and exceptional sense of hospitality, Laos, sandwiched between Thailand and Vietnam, has a lost-in-time quality.
Chase News & Stories

Kirkcudbright student heads for Laos
Ten students from the University’s Paisley and Dumfries campuses working with the residents of Nasavahn and Houy Mieng villages, near the UNESCO world heritage town of Luang Prabang, Laos, to improve the quality of their water supply.
— The Galloway Gazette

How much communism is still in Vietnam and Laos?
Anyone who visits Saigon today will find stylish teenagers with smartphones in their hands. But what is behind the façade? And what about Hanoi and Vientiane? A round trip through three metropolises.
DIE WELT

 

Malaysia morning news

Malaysia Morning News

Compiled by Vat Vin    @vin_vat

 

 

M’sia named top medical tourism destination for third time
Malaysia has won the Health and Medical Tourism Destination of the Year award for the third consecutive year.
New Straits Times

Bring down tariff to zero, eliminate NTB, Najib tells Asean
The 10-member Association of South-east Nations (Asean) must work vigorously to bring down tariffs in the region to zero and eliminate non-tariff barriers, as there is no other alternative to create a seamless economy, says Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.
Malay Mail Online

Malaysia may take action against WhatsApp admins for spreading fake news: Report
WhatsApp group administrators could face legal action in Malaysia if they failed to curb the spread of false information among members, according to national daily Berita Harian.
Channel NewsAsia

UNICEF urges Malaysia to ban corporal punishment in schools
The U.N. children’s agency on Thursday urged Malaysia to ban corporal punishment in schools, following the death of an 11-year-old boy who was allegedly abused at a religious school.
Times Colonist

Engtex secures RM60mil pipe supply contract
Leading pipe manufacturer Engtex Group Bhd has secured five contracts worth RM60mil to supply mild steel cement-lined and ductile iron pipes to various water and infrastructure projects undertaken by the government in Johor, Pahang, Kedah and Selangor.
The Star Online

Alliance Bank, Alliance Islamic launch first of its kind loan consolidation service
Alliance Bank Malaysia Bhd and Alliance Islamic Bank Bhd today launched the Alliance One Account, the first loan consolidation service of its kind in Malaysia that uses a mortgage product.
New Straits Times

World Bank report: Pemandu biggest government ‘delivery unit’ globally
With over 100 staff, Pemandu is the largest of its kind in the world compared to most “delivery units” that comprise about six to 16 workers, a World Bank Group report said.
Malay Mail Online

Malacca NRD gets cracking on RM10,000 sale of MyKads to foreigners
The Malacca National Registration Department (NRD) has started investigations into the sale of MyKads to foreigners totalling RM10,000.
— Malay Mail Online

HSS Engineers planning to diversify into water and power sectors
HSS Engineers Bhd plans to diversify its business operations both in new vertical markets and geographical locations, moving forward.
— The Star Online

Scomi Engineering to deliver first monorail for Brazil project by Q32017
Scomi Engineering Bhd aims to deliver the first five-car monorail to Brazil’s Line 17 project by the third quarter of this year.
New Straits Times

Why are M’sians investing hard-earned money in Ponzi schemes?
THERE is never a sure thing when it comes to making money. Risk, which ranges from low to high depending on the venture a person gets involved in, is ever present.
The Star Online

Ringgit opens lower against US dollar
The ringgit opened lower against the US dollar this morning as the greenback edged up against other currencies after the European Central Bank left policy and interest rate unchanged.
New Straits Times

Report: Sarawak reviews water tariff
The Sarawak government is studying its water tariff rate that was last reviewed in 1995.
Malay Mail Online

The clown drawing that brought Malaysia’s free-speech fight to Australia
Malaysian graphic designer Fahmi Reza, 38, is using a visit to Australia to draw attention to his court battle with his country’s government, and encourage nationals of his homeland to campaign harder for free speech.
SBS

Malaysia Airlines close to launching A380 charter carrier for pilgrim flights
Malaysia Airlines is close to launching a new airline that will use its six Airbus A380s to fly passengers undertaking the Muslim pilgrimages of Haj and Umrah, Chief Executive Peter Bellew said.
Reuters

 

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Myanmar morning newsMyanmar Morning News

Compiled by Stella-maris Ewudolu    @Estee

 

 

Meth’s new frontier: The Islamic marshlands of Bangladesh
Annual seizures of meth in the country have gone up 80,000 percent — yes, eighty thousand percent — in nine years.
— PRI

Mizoram bans import of pigs and piglets from Myanmar and Bangladesh
Prohibitory orders banning import of pigs and piglets from neighbouring Myanmar and Bangladesh were today issued in Mizoram’s southernmost Lawngtlai district.
— The Arunachal Times

Chin State’s Unsuccessful Campaign to Ban Liquor
For eight years, prohibition was in effect in Chin State’s Thantlang Township. Today, it is water under the bridge.
— The Irrawaddy

Gold orders drop due to purchase tax
Since the government started to collect tax on gold purchases on April 1, orders at workshops and goldsmiths have dropped.
— Myanmar Times

Seven Men Arrested in Southern Maungdaw in Alleged Links with Dacoits
The Myanmar Border Guard Police (BGP) arrested 7 Rohingya fishermen in southern Maungdaw on April 19 on allegations of having connections with armed robbers operating in the region, reports say.
— Rohingya Vision

Microfinance Firm Hayman Secures $1m Loan as Part of Aggressive Growth Plan
Microfinance lender Hayman Capital has secured a $1 million loan from Malaysia’s May Bank as part of an ambitious expansion plan to enlarge its loan portfolio and become a market leader.
— Consult-Myanmar

Lending Firm To Return More Than One Billion Kyats to Magwe Govt
The chairman of a lending firm said the business would return 1.57 billion kyats transferred to it from regional development funds under the previous government.
— The Irrawaddy

Parliament approves proposal for better Yangon public transport
The Yangon Regional Parliament has approved a proposal to improve the region’s public transportation system by enforcing rules and regulations and submitting all operations for the Yangon Bus System (YBS) to the public.
— Myanmar Times

Modernisation Fuels New Lending in Myanmar’s Banking Sector
At the end of February the Central Bank of Myanmar (CBM) announced it was considering expanding the range of services that foreign lenders in the country can offer by allowing them to provide trade-only accounts to importers and exporters, which local banks are unable to do.
— Consult-Myanmar

Myanmar eyes close military ties with Germany
At the invitation of General Volker Weiker, Chief of Staff of the Bundeswehr, the German armed forces, Commander-in-Chief of the Defence Services Senior General Min Aung Hlaing and party arrived at Tegel International Airport in Berlin, Germany on 26 April.
— Global New Light Of Myanmar

State Counsellor calls for betterment of Union Peace Conference
With the second meeting of the Union Peace Conference—21st Century Panglong less than a month away, State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi reiterated the importance of improving the outcome of the meeting by remembering the successes of the past.
— Global New Light Of Myanmar

Myanmar jumps 12 spots on World Press Freedom Index despite worsening censorship
Reporters Without Borders (RSF) released their 2017 World Press Freedom Index yesterday. Despite mounting claims of official censorship under Section 66(d) of the Telecommunications Law, Myanmar managed to jump 12 spots on the list this year, coming in at 131 out of 180 countries. Last year, Myanmar was ranked 143, and the year before that, 144.
— Coconuts Yangon

Yangon to upgrade markets with PPP system
The Yangon Region government is going to install 21 markets with a public-private partnership (PPP) system, according to U Myint Thaung, the regional minister for planning and finance.
— Myanmar Times

Rights Groups Call For Pressure on Myanmar to Cooperate With UN Mission in Rakhine
An open letter sent on Thursday by 23 rights groups and other international organizations is calling on world governments to urge Myanmar’s cooperation with a forthcoming U.N. fact-finding mission sent to investigate abuses in Rakhine state and other conflict zones in the country.
— Radio Free Asia

Myanmar bank opts for Misys for digitalisation
First Private Bank (FPB) has chosen Misys FusionBanking to streamline operations and digitalise as it takes a significant role in contributing to Myanmar’s growing economy.
— Hubbis

Myanmar to receive technological advice from S.Korea for advancement
Myanmar and South Korea have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on technology advice and solution from the East Asian country, Myanmar News Agency reported Friday.
— Xinhua

 

Philippines morning newsPhilippines Morning News

Compiled by Stella-maris Ewudolu    @Estee

 

 

Philippines’ Duterte says helpless against China
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said on Thursday (Apr 27) there was no point protesting Chinese artificial island building in disputed areas of the South China Sea because it could not be stopped.
— Channel NewsAsia

ASEAN now Philippines’ biggest trading partner
The Philippines has increased trade with other Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) members and has enormous potential for capturing half of world market, a testament it is benefiting from its partnership with nine other ASEAN members, an economist said.
— Concept Central

‘Hidden cell’ found in Manila Police District station
More than a dozen detainees were found in a nearly airless cell hidden behind a shelf at the Manila Police District (MPD) Station 1 yesterday.
— The Philippine Star

Philippines to get South Korea anti-sub warship
South Korea will transfer a used Pohang-class anti-submarine warship to the Philippines this year in return for a token $100, the defense department said yesterday, boosting its capability to patrol vast maritime borders.
— The Philippine Star

Philippines is 2nd Fastest Growing Auto Market in ASEAN
According to the latest ASEAN Automotive Federation data, the Philippines remained among the most lucrative automotive markets in the region, as it recorded the second fastest growth in motor vehicle sales among seven countries in Southeast Asia. Data showed that the Philippines posted a 17.4 percent growth in the first two months, helping the country improve its position from third to second in the ASEAN rankings.
— Yahoo News

Altered audit caused mining firm’s suspension – DENR exec
A ranking official of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has attested in an affidavit submitted to the Office of the Ombudsman that former environment undersecretary Leo Jasareno instructed him to change last year’s audit findings on Lepanto Consolidated Mining Co. to make it appear that it committed major violations.
— The Philippine Star

9,000 gun licenses revoked
Over 9,000 firearm licenses have been revoked by the Philippine National Police Firearms and Explosives Office (FEO) for various reasons, including the involvement of the gun owners in illegal drugs.
— The Philippine Star

Self-rated poverty edges up in Q1
THE RANKS of Filipinos considering themselves poor increased last quarter as all geographical areas saw slight increments, according to a new Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey.
— BusinessWorld Online

Environment department poised to ban open-pit mining — Lopez
THE DEPARTMENT of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) will ban mines preparing to operate from using the open-pit method to extract metal ore.
— BusinessWorld Online

Push for S. China Sea code stirs ASEAN suspicions about Beijing’s end game
CHINA’s support for finalising a code of conduct in the hotly contested South China Sea is generating some hope in Southeast Asia of settling disputes, but those working out the terms remain unconvinced of Beijing’s sincerity.
— BusinessWorld Online

Duterte nixes ABS-CBN franchise renewal
PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte on Thursday said he will block the renewal of the franchise of media and entertainment giant ABS-CBN Corp. for allegedly swindling him.
— BusinessWorld Online

Duterte: Arbitral ruling not an issue for Asean
President Duterte on Thursday said it was pointless discussing at the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) summit the Philippines’ victory over China in the South China Sea dispute, and no one dared pressure Beijing anyway.
— Inquirer.net

SMC, PNCC mull over P700-B Quezon-Samar road, bridge deal
Conglomerate San Miguel Corp. and the Philippine National Construction Corp. (PNCC) are studying a massive P700-billion toll road project and bridge stretching from Quezon province to Northern Samar.
— Inquirer.net

50 percent of Pinoys say they are poor: SWS
The percentage of Filipinos believing they are poor increased to half the population, the latest Social Weather Stations survey said.
— ABS-CBN

Aquino officials should face trial over P3.8-B trains unfit for MRT – Poe
Transport officials in the Aquino administration must pay and face trial over the purchase of 48 coaches worth P3.8 billion that turned out to be not suitable for the Metro Rail Transit (MRT) 3 system, Sen. Grace Poe demanded yesterday.
— Manila Bulletin

BSP expects April inflation at 3%-3.8%
Headline inflation may settle at as low as 3 percent or as high as 3.8 percent in April, the central bank said, broadening its forecast range from the 3.4 percent posted in March to factor in higher utility rates and oil prices, as well as lower cooking gas prices and a stronger peso.
— The Manila Times

Asean backs Philippines infra program
The Philippines has taken the limelight in Southeast Asia not only as the host of the ASEAN Summit this year, but also as a center of infrastructure development in the region given the government’s aggressive infrastructure push.
— The Philippine Star

 

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Singapore morning newsSingapore Morning News

Compiled by Stella-maris Ewudolu    @Estee

 

 

Bangkok gets the traffic, Singapore gets the bucks
Bangkok may be the most visited destination in Asia-Pacific among foreign visitors, but it is Singapore where they spend the most.
— Bangkok Post

33% of the youth here think cannabis is ‘not addictive’
As some nations decriminalise cannabis – and some of its supporters extol its virtues – a growing number of the youth here are also displaying a more laid-back attitude towards the drug.
— The New Paper

PepsiCo opens S$130 million plant in Singapore
US beverage giant PepsiCo opened a new plant in Singapore on Thursday (April 27) that will produce and supply beverage concentrates for 20 Asia Pacific markets. The state-of-the-art plant, which comes with an investment of US$93 million (S$130 million), will create 90 jobs for research scientists, engineers and technicians, said the company.
— Today Online

UOB’s Q1 earnings up 5.4% on growth in core income
UOB Group reported net earnings of S$807 million for the first quarter of 2017, up 5.4 per cent from a year ago.
— The Business Times

JustGrab bookings reach 5m one month after launch
More than five million JustGrab bookings have been made one month after its launch, the ride-hailing provider said in an update yesterday, adding that it has translated to shorter waiting times for commuters as well.
— Today Online

Singapore private home prices continue to slide; non-landed prices stay flat in Q1
PRICES of Singapore’s private residential properties slipped for the 14th straight quarter in the first quarter of this year with a 0.4 per cent dip, compared to a 0.5 per cent fall in the preceding quarter, according to data from the Urban Redevelopment Authority on Friday.
— The Business Times

UK startup TransferWise expands money remittance service to Singapore
TransferWise Ltd., the London-based startup backed by investors including Peter Thiel’s Valar Ventures and Andreessen Horowitz, is bringing its international money transfer service to Singapore, aiming to shake up banks’ dominance of the market.
— Deal Street Asia

Google and local running group to map nature trails
Trekkers carrying a scaled-down version of the technology behind Google Street View will be helping to put Singapore trails on the map.
— The Straits Times

HDB resale prices see steeper fall in Q1
HDB resale prices slipped 0.5 per cent in the first quarter, steeper than the 0.1 per cent dip in Q4 2016, data from the Housing & Development Board showed on Friday.
— The Business Times

Too early to predict effects of Trump’s tax cuts
The Trump administration’s proposed tax cuts unveiled yesterday were so scant on detail that many observers said it was too early to determine what implications they might have for American businesses here.
— The New Paper

Water price hike to temporarily push inflation up
The initial temporary impact of the water tariff hike, which will kick in over two phases starting from July, is estimated to add 0.1 percentage-point to both headline and core inflation this year, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) said in its Macroeconomic Review published yesterday.
— Today Online

SMEs maintaining cautious outlook, bank hopes on 2018 recovery
While large corporations saw signs of recovery in the latter half of last year, most small and medium enterprises (SMEs) here do not seem to have experienced an uplift, consistent with the still-guarded outlook expressed in recent surveys, the Monetary Authority of Singapore said in its Macroeconomic Review yesterday.
— Today Online

Singapore’s automation incentives draw tech firms, boost economy
Foreign precision engineering firms are investing more in Singapore, drawn by strong semiconductor demand and government incentives aimed at re-tooling an economy short of skilled labor.
— Reuters

Foreign workers trickle out of Singapore, with job outlook to remain cautious: MAS
Singapore’s reliance on foreign labor may be shifting, with the city-state’s central bank pointing on Thursday to a cautious employment outlook.
— CNBC

“Unemployment could rise further” as Singapore tackles structural transition: Swee Say
Unemployment “could rise further”, Manpower Minister Lim Swee Say cautioned in a sobering May Day message on Friday (April 28) pointing out that the Republic would need more time and effort to overcome the current economic challenges.
— Today Online

4 stations on East-West line to open on June 18
Four new MRT stations on the East-West Line will open in the west in June, cutting down some commuters’ journeys by up to 35 minutes, said the Land Transport Authority (LTA) yesterday.
— The New Paper

 

Thailand morning newsThailand Morning News

Compiled by John Le Fevre    @photo_journ

 

 

Thailand to seek arrest warrant for Red Bull heir
Thailand’s attorney general said on Thursday it would seek the arrest of an heir to the Red Bull fortune after he failed to meet prosecutors over an alleged hit-and-run that killed a police officer five years ago.
– Reuters

PM urges Ministry of Science to support research and innovation
Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha has delivered his policy address to the Ministry of Science and Technology, urging the ministry to mobilize policies that coincide with the government’s Thailand 4.0 agenda.
– NNT

Consumer debt revs up
Thai household debts rose to the highest rate in eight years because of debts accrued from previous years, according to the latest survey by the University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce (UTCC).
– Bangkok Post

FPO projects 3.3% export uptick
The Fiscal Policy Office (FPO) has raised its 2017 export growth forecast to 3.3% but is maintaining its economic growth projection at 3.6%.
– Bangkok Post

Somkid targets 70% Hong Kong market share for Thai rice
Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak has targeted that Thai rice will secure 70 per cent of the Hong Kong market this year.
– The Nation

Mitsubishi Motors is now largest auto exporter in Thailand
Out of all the global automotive manufacturers with production plants in Thailand, one has emerged as the country’s top exporter for the fiscal year 2016.
– AutoIndustriya.com

Bangkok gets the traffic, Singapore gets the bucks
Bangkok may be the most visited destination in Asia-Pacific among foreign visitors, but it is Singapore where they spend the most.
— Bangkok Post

Gazprom considers gas production on shelf of Thailand and Cambodia
PJSC Gazprom considers gas production projects on the continental shelf of Thailand and Cambodia, Deputy Chairman of the Board of the gas holding, Vitaly Markelov, said in an interview to the company’s corporate magazine.
– Construction.RU

Digital Economy & Society Min to develop Phuket into smart city
The Ministry of Digital Economy and Society has unveiled its plan to develop Phuket into a smart city to foster the welfare of residents and tourists.
– NNT

CP increasing fresh produce
SET-listed CP All Plc, the operator of 7-Eleven convenience store and 24 Shopping online channel, plans to have more agricultural products at its retail network.
– Bangkok Post

Thai food giants expected to gain from US tax cuts
Thailand’s agricultural and food sectors are expected to gain from US tax reductions, according to a brokerage house. Companies operating in the United States could gain from a massive tax cut for businesses and individuals in the country, said Asia Plus Securities, which has raised its 2017 net-profit forecasts by 3.0 per cent for Thai Union Group (TU) and by 0.4 per cent Chareon Pokphand Foods
– The Nation

PTTEP posts record $349m Q1 profit
PTT Exploration and Production Plc (PTTEP), the SET-listed upstream petroleum company, posted a record net profit of US$349 million (12.1 billion baht) in the first quarter, up from $211 million last year, thanks to rising global oil prices.
– Bangkok Post

Thailand: Thailand exports 3.4 million tonnes of rice in four months 2017
Thailand exported 3.4 million tonnes of rice in January-April, representing a year-on-year rise of 6.4 percent, the Department of Foreign Trade said on April 24.
– World-Grain.com

Qatar Airways and TAT sign agreement to boost tourism to Thailand
The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) and Qatar Airways, one of the world’s leading airlines, today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) at the Arabian Travel Market (ATM) 2017 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
– Travel Daily News

Finance Ministry upgrading payment system
The Thai government continues to enhance the country’s payment system to be in line with the Thailand 4.0 economic platform.
– NNT

Thailand exports 100% of its mangosteen production
Thailand is one of the largest producers of this fruit worldwide and the areas where it is cultivated are diverse, especially in the South. To date, the Asian markets, as well as North America, are the major consumers of mangosteen from Thailand.
– Fresh Plazza

7-Eleven To Accept Credit Cards
Soon you won’t need to hit the ATM to get cash when you’re running low at the end of the month because 7-Eleven stores will accept credit cards.
– Buriran Times

Jittery ISPs seek better guidance on internet blocks
Fearing their licences may be revoked, internet service providers have sought guidance from the national telecom regulator on how they can block all illicit webpages and content on local network servers within the next seven days, especially content encrypted overseas which is extremely difficult to block.
– Bangkok Post

Govt to install mobile signal towers covering national park areas nationwide
The Office of National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) and the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation is increasing the mobile signal and internet coverage areas in national parks to facilitate officials and tourists.
– NNT

Suspected Muslim insurgents in S. Thailand kill 4 soldiers
Suspected Muslim insurgents killed four paramilitary army rangers Thursday in an ambush in southern Thailand, in the latest high-profile attack in the troubled region.
– The Daily Progress

Thailand’s tire market is projected to cross $5.6 billion mark by 2022
In 2016, two-wheeler tire segment dominated the country’s tire market, followed by light commercial vehicle, passenger car, medium and heavy commercial vehicle and off-the-road tire segments. Tire replacement segment accounts for around two-thirds of the tire demand emanating in the country in 2016, and the segment is anticipated to maintain its dominance through 2022.
– BUSINESS WIRE (press release)

Thailand MICE Industry & Forecast to 2022
Thailand will attract more than 1.3 Million MICE travelers and generated nearly about US$ 4 Billion revenues by 2022.
– BUSINESS WIRE (press release)

Thailand, Myanmar Meet to Suppress Drugs in Border Areas
Thailand and Myanmar have stepped up cooperation to suppress illegal drugs in border areas.
– Chiang Rai Times

Donors Cut Financial Support to Refugee Camp Workers
Some 10,000 community workers in nine refugee camps on the Thai-Burma border will be affected by financial cuts as funding declines, according to sources from the refugee community and aid agencies.
– ReliefWeb

Govt not canceling 30-baht health care program: NHSO
The government is not canceling the 30-baht health care program but instead increasing the health care benefits, said National Health Security Office (NHSO) spokesman Attaporn Limpanyalert.
– NNT

Farang-only photo contest offers foreign residents a prize of 20,000 baht for Thai-centric pics
A photo contest announced by the government is calling for gorgeous, original photos evocative of life in Thailand and taken by foreigners living here. Called “Thailand in your mind,” the contest is open to all non-Thais who are legally living in Thailand.
– Coconuts Bangkok

 

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Vietnam morning newsVietnam Morning News

Compiled by John Le Fevre    @photo_journ

 

 

Vietnam well poised to face growth challenges
Global research and consultancy firm Oxford Business Group (OBG) on April 25 launched a comprehensive report on the Vietnamese economy.
VIETNAMNET Bridge

PV Gas and foreign partners to build $1.27bn gas pipeline
A subsidiary of the State-owned oil and gas group PetroVietnam and its foreign partners have secured a license to invest in a natural gas pipeline in the south of Vietnam, making it the largest foreign investment project approved this year.
VIETNAMNET Bridge

Intellectual property key for firms
Businesses may be able to improve earnings and market values if they are able to develop and use intellectual property in efficient ways, officials said at a seminar on Tuesday.
Viet Nam News

Fish exporters aim to crack Europe
The Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP) is showcasing Vietnamese seafood products at the Seafood Expo Global, which is being held in Brussels, Belgium, from Tuesday to Thursday.
Viet Nam News

Vietnam says Facebook commits to preventing offensive content
Vietnam’s government said Facebook has committed to work with it to prevent content that violates the country’s laws from appearing on its platform.
Reuters

Facebook agrees to content rules: Vietnam
The Vietnam government says Facebook has committed to work with it to remove content that violates the country’s laws.
Yahoo7 News

Vietnam Will Lose The Most From A Code Of Conduct In The South China Sea
Leaders from 10 Southeast Asian countries are talking this week, possibly about peaceful use of the heavily disputed South China Sea.
Forbes

Green Growth Strategy stirs up local power mix
State-run Electricity of Vietnam (EVN) has just adopted a resolution on developing solar photovoltaic (PV) power with the aim of generating more power for the country’s fast-approaching need.
VIETNAMNET Bridge

Korean banks expand in Vietnam
Following Shinhan Vietnam’s successful acquisition of ANZ Vietnam’s retail business, fellow Korean banks have also expanded their sizes and market share in Vietnam, seizing the lead in the foreign bank race on the Vietnamese market.
VIETNAMNET Bridge

Viglacera to form joint venture with Cuba
The Việt Nam Glass and Ceramics for Construction Corporation (Viglacera)’s annual shareholder meeting on Tuesday highlighted the company’s business plan to implement investment activities in Cuba.
Viet Nam News

Vietnamese grab gold in Asia, Singapore Open
Vietnamese brother and sister secured medals at the second leg of the Asian Grand Prix yesterday in China.
Viet Nam News

Fallen Vietnam Heroes memorial opens on Friday in Santa Fe
Family members of those killed in action in the Vietnam War and all veterans are invited to attend the unveiling of a “Tribute to New Mexico’s Fallen Vietnam Heroes” display at 10 a.m. Friday (April 28) inside the Bataan Memorial Building in the main floor hallway in front of the New Mexico Department of Veterans Services, 407 Galisteo St. in Santa Fe.
taosnews

Vietnam exhibit coming to Collin County in May
The half-size replica of the Washington, DC Vietnam Veterans Memorial known as the Moving Wall will arrive in Sachse next month.
Princeton Herald

Essential Vietnam: Food and Sightseeing Guide to Saigon and Hanoi
Compelling and astonishingly beautiful, few places in the world offer the spectacular (and often overwhelming) splendor that Vietnam does, and this magic is especially apparent in its largest cities.
Vogue.com

Single women enjoying independent lives on the rise in Vietnam’s cities
Vietnam has seen a rising number of women who delay or even reject completely the idea of marriage regardless of social or biological factors, especially in major cities.
— Xinhua

 

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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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