• Nepal: We will need huge foreign support for reconstruction

    Nepal: We will need huge foreign support for reconstruction

    Nepal’s government will need immense international support as the Himalayan nation begins turning its attention toward reconstruction in the coming weeks, in the wake of the devastating April earthquake, a top official said Monday. Nepal is one of the world’s poorest nations, and its economy, largely based on tourism, has been crippled by the earthquake, [...]

    06-May-2015 Intellasia | AP | 6:00 AM
  • Nepal’s government asks aid workers to go into countryside

    Nepal’s government asks aid workers to go into countryside

    Nepal’s government has urged foreign aid workers to go into the beleagured countryside to help those worst affected by the 7.8-magnitude earthquake that has claimed nearly 7,300 lives so far. Aid workers were continuing to stream into Kathmandu’s Tribhuvan International Airport yesterday. Some 4,050 rescue workers from 34 different nations have flown to Nepal to [...]

    06-May-2015 Intellasia | Irishtimes | 6:00 AM
  • Malaysia Airlines begins selling off fleet

    Malaysia Airlines begins selling off fleet

    Malaysia Airline System (MAS), parent of Malaysia Airlines, is already seeing significant changes to operations and fleet, following the May 1 start date for new CEO Christoph Mueller, who is former CEO of Aer Lingus. The Sabah and Sarawak state governments have put forward a plan to purchase MAS’s regional arm, MASwings, and the carrier [...]

    06-May-2015 Intellasia | Atw Online | 6:00 AM
  • China urges Philippines to stop provocation on sea disputes

    China urges Philippines to stop provocation on sea disputes

    China on Monday urged the Philippines to stop “malicious hyping and provocation” on territorial disputes in the South China Sea. Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Hua Chunying made the remarks while commenting media reports of the Philippine foreign ministry, which allegedly said China’s construction on islands in the South China Sea after the signing of the Declaration [...]

    06-May-2015 Intellasia | Xinhua | 6:00 AM
  • Three Chinese Vessels Enter Disputed Japanese Waters in East China Sea

    Three Chinese Vessels Enter Disputed Japanese Waters in East China Sea

    Three Chinese coast guard vessels entered the waters of the Senkaku Islands, also known as the Diaoyu Islands and subject to a territorial dispute between Japan and China, local media reported Monday. The Japan Times cited the headquarters of the regional coast guard in Okinawa as saying that three of China’s coast guard ships had [...]

    06-May-2015 Intellasia | Sputnik News | 6:00 AM
  • China lodges US protest after religious freedom criticised

    China lodges US protest after religious freedom criticised

    Beijing Monday lodged a protest against the United States after a government advisory body highlighted “severe violations of religious freedom” in China. The Chinese foreign ministry expressed anger after the US Commission on International Religious Freedom, an independent federal government body, raised concerns over Beijing’s religious policies. “We have launched representations with the US and [...]

    06-May-2015 Intellasia | AFP | 6:00 AM
  • In China, Taiwan party leader calls for more global access

    In China, Taiwan party leader calls for more global access

    The head of Taiwan’s ruling Nationalist Party called for more chances for the island to participate in international organisations after a meeting Monday with Chinese President Xi Jinping, whose government views the territory as a renegade province. Eric Chu also affirmed his party’s support for a consensus reached between Chinese and Taiwanese negotiators in 1992 [...]

    06-May-2015 Intellasia | AP | 6:00 AM
  • Indian PM Modi to visit China next week

    Indian PM Modi to visit China next week

    India’s prime minister Narendra Modi will visit China next week, Beijing said on Tuesday, as New Delhi tries to balance its trade deficit with its neighbour despite a simmering border dispute. It is Modi’s first visit to China as leader of its Himalayan neighbour – the world’s largest democracy and an Asian geopolitical rival – [...]

    06-May-2015 Intellasia | AFP | 6:00 AM
  • Nepali police, villagers dig through mud to pull out bodies

    Nepali police, villagers dig through mud to pull out bodies

    Police and local villagers have recovered 60 bodies from the Langtang Valley in the days since the April 25 earthquake and mudslide, said Gautam Rimal, the top government official in the Rasuwa district. Nine of the victims were foreign trekkers, Rimal said. Villagers say as many as 200 people could have been killed. The Langtang [...]

    06-May-2015 Intellasia | AP | 6:00 AM
  • China says Philippines breaking code of conduct by building in South China Sea

    China says Philippines breaking code of conduct by building in South China Sea

    China has accused the Philippines of violating a 13-year-old informal code of conduct in the South China Sea by building on disputed islets, a move that comes after repeated criticism of China’s construction work. China and the 10-member Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) signed an agreement in 2002 to refrain from occupying and [...]

    06-May-2015 Intellasia | The Guardian | 7:26 AM
  • At least 21 people on bus killed in fiery wreck in India

    At least 21 people on bus killed in fiery wreck in India

    At least 21 people were burned to death when a bus fell into a ditch and caught fire in central India on Monday, police said. Constable Vikram Singh at the police control room in Panna district said the death toll from the crash may rise as police teams cut into the wreckage of the charred [...]

    06-May-2015 Intellasia | AP | 6:00 AM
  • Nepal urges foreign rescue workers in capital to return home

    Nepal urges foreign rescue workers in capital to return home

    Nepal’s government urged foreign rescue workers in the quake-hit capital to return home Monday as hundreds of people visited Buddhist shrines and monasteries to mark the birthday of Gautam Buddha. Information minister Minendra Rijal said the major rescue work inKathmanduand surrounding areas have been completed and that the remaining operations can be handled by local [...]

    05-May-2015 Intellasia | AP | 7:13 AM

Society

Elton John adds Australian dates to his latest world tour

In an official statement the legendary British pop star announced his All The Hits Tour will be heading down under this December. In a move that could prove to be the perfect Christmas gift for antipodeanan fans of the “Rocket Man” singer, Elton John will be playing eight December dates in Australia, starting on December [...]

Two charged over China ‘Fast & Furious’ Lamborghini-Ferrari crash

Two young men who staged what China’s state news agency called a “real-life ‘Fast and Furious’ drag race” in central Beijing were charged Monday with dangerous driving. Last month’s crash of a Lamborghini and a Ferrari in the capital of the communist nation sparked a wave of online speculation and comment. Xinhua news agency, which [...]

Koala ‘Blinky Bill’ saunters into Australian hospital

An inquisitive koala nicknamed “Blinky Bill” has sauntered into the emergency department of an Australian hospital, exploring the waiting room for several minutes before wandering back out. The unexpected visit, captured on CCTV, delighted health workers and has gone viral on Facebook. Western District Health Service chief executive Rohan Fitzgerald said the furry animal was [...]

Health

H5N1 revisits Turkey as H5N8 plagues Taiwan

Highly pathogenic H5N1 avian flu has resurfaced in Turkey for the first time since 2008, while the H5N8 virus has hit five more poultry farms in Taiwan, according to reports filed with the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE). In Turkey, H5N1 killed a backyard flock of 27 poultry in the north-central province of Kastamonu, [...]

Building on 20 years of success for Taiwan’s NHI

Taiwan’s National Health Insurance (NHI) system is globally renowned for providing citizens with easy access to high-quality medical services. Over 99 percent of the population is enrolled in the single-payer NHI, while around 93 percent of the country’s healthcare providers participate. Basic premiums, which are shared among the insured, employer and government, are calculated on [...]

‘Breaking Bad’ in China: how meth is spreading across rural heartland

Meth has overtaken heroin as the most widely used drug in Asia’s most populous country – and it could pose an even greater threat. Ah Chao first came across drugs as a teenager, when his cousin asked him to hold his tourniquet while he shot up heroin. Now a stocky 32-year-old in jeans and a [...]

FinanceAsia

Rackspace Opens New Data Centre and Expands Existing Flagship Data Centre in Australia

 Rackspace® (NYSE: RAX), the #1 managed cloud company, announced the development of a new data centre and existing data hall expansion to serve growing demand from customers in Australia and New Zealand. Continued growth in the ANZ market has triggered an expansion in the current capacity and scope of services offered by its existing data centre investment, the [...]

Asia: Marts mixed on tensions in Crimea

Asian stocks Tuesday May 05 reversed early gains, with China’s market taking fright and dropping more than four percent as new share issues raised the prospect of a sell-off. Hong Kong’s main index closed down 368.28 points or 1.31 percent at 27,755.54, tracking China stocks which fell sharply as the upcoming new issues raised the [...]

Jackpot Factory Players Are Scratching & Winning This May

The Jackpot Factory casinos are capturing the thrill of lottery scratch cards in the new Scratch & Win promotion, running this May. Twice each week, players will be invited to scratch a virtual card on the casino’s website to win a guaranteed prize: free spins on Avalon II: The Quest for the Grail, a free casino bonus, or [...]

Regional

Muted celebrations of Buddha’s birthday in Nepal

Celebrations of Buddha’s birthday in Nepal were muted on Monday, as the faithful turned their prayers to loved ones lost in the country’s massive earthquake and worries that the tragedy might be the start of a much larger reckoning. According to Buddhist scripture, when the land becomes burdened – by pollution, overpopulation or simply too [...]

US choppers begin Nepal quake reconnaissance flights

US military helicopters began reconnaissance trips Monday to assess remote areas of Nepal devastated by an earthquake that killed more than 7,300 people, an official said. Nine days after a 7.8-magnitude quake brought death and destruction to the Himalayan nation, the helicopters surveyed mountain villages. Four tilt-rotor Ospreys have also arrived in Nepal. “Only the [...]

ANZ Bank interim net profit up threepct

The Australia and New Zealand Banking Group on Tuesday posted a modest first half net profit rise of three percent to Aus$3.5 billion (US$2.7 billion), spurred by growth in both domestic and international operations. ANZ’s cash profit, which strips out one-off and other items and is a measure often preferred by financial institutions, jumped five [...]

China

China says Philippines breaking code of conduct by building in South China Sea

China says Philippines breaking code of conduct by building in South China Sea

China has accused the Philippines of violating a 13-year-old informal code of conduct in the South China Sea by building on disputed islets, a move that comes after repeated criticism of China’s construction work. China and the 10-member Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) signed an agreement in 2002 to refrain from occupying and [...]

UN official praises China’s assistance to Nepal after quake

The leader of the UN Development Programme on Monday praised China’s relief efforts in Nepal and said the country’s importance to global development will only grow. Helen Clark, the UNDP administrator, met with Premier Li Keqiang and commerce, economic planning and foreign ministry officials on Monday. On Tuesday she will meet with environment officials. Clark [...]

Japanese lawmakers visit Beijing in bid to improve bilateral ties

A group of senior Diet members from the ruling and opposition parties arrived Monday in Beijing in the hopes of keeping up momentum for increased exchanges with China. The three-day trip by the group comes after prime minister Shinzo Abe and President Xi Jinping held talks, the second in the last six months, on the [...]

Malaysia

Lured by Malaysian jobs, Bangladeshis end up slaves in Thai jungles, report claims

Hundreds of thousands of Bangladeshi nationals in pursuit of jobs in Malaysia are believed to have fallen victim to the modern-day slave trade, amid claims of rampant human trafficking activities over the porous Malaysia-Thailand border, according to The Daily Star today. The Bangladesh-based English newspaper claimed that at least 250,000 Bangladeshis have been held in [...]

Malaysia Airlines begins selling off fleet

Malaysia Airlines begins selling off fleet

Malaysia Airline System (MAS), parent of Malaysia Airlines, is already seeing significant changes to operations and fleet, following the May 1 start date for new CEO Christoph Mueller, who is former CEO of Aer Lingus. The Sabah and Sarawak state governments have put forward a plan to purchase MAS’s regional arm, MASwings, and the carrier [...]

Don’t waste your votes on PAS: Umno deputy president

Umno deputy president Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin has told Felda settlers here not to waste their votes on PAS because the party cannot solve their problems. In a final push for Barisan Nasional, he urged Rompin constituents to think about their future and who would be able to help them with their problems. “It is [...]

Indonesia

No timeframe on when Australia’s ambassador to Indonesia will return to Jakarta, Julie Bishop says

Foreign minister Julie Bishop says it is an exceedingly difficult time in the relationship with Indonesia and she can not say when Australia’s ambassador will return to Jakarta. Ms Bishop has begun face-to-face talks with ambassador Paul Grigson, who was withdrawn from Indonesia in the wake of the executions of Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukamaran. [...]

Indonesian district bans unmarried couples from motorbike rides

A district in Indonesia’s Aceh has passed legislation banning unmarried men and women from riding together on motorbikes, a lawmaker said Monday, the latest new Islamic regulation in the conservative province. Members of parliament in North Aceh district last week approved the regulation, which will come into effect in a year, said lawmaker Fauzan Hamzah, [...]

Indonesia: British granny accused of drug trafficking on death row

A British grandmother on death row in Indonesia is writing goodbye letters to her family and believes she could be executed at any time, she wrote in an article on Sunday. Lindsay Sandiford, 58, said she was expecting to die shortly, after seven foreign drug convicts were executed last week, causing a storm of international [...]

Singapore

Viber’s Singapore Stickers Speak Louder Than Singlish Words

There are some things about Singaporean culture that the English language just can’t explain. Like how the meaning of the word ‘sian’ lies somewhere between annoyance and exasperation, or how a reply of ‘oso can’ suggests a mix of mild indifference and indecision when someone suggests a location for dinner. But sometimes, a sticker says [...]

Blogger group slams MDA for The Real Singapore closure, court allows editor to go to Australia

A blogger activist group is slamming the Media Development Authority’s (MDA) closure of The Real Singapore (TRS) and calling for the ‘arbitrary’ and ‘unsubstantiated’ action to be immediately revoked. The group, call FreeMyInternet is also demanding that the MDA ‘come clean on its processes and standards’ as a regulatory body. In a statement to the [...]

Singapore PM says 2020 timeline unrealistic for Malaysia rail project

Singapore prime minister Lee Hsien Loong said a 2020 timeline to build a high-speed rail link between the city-state and Malaysia was unrealistic, adding that the two countries hoped to reach an agreement by end of the year on when the trains would start running. Singapore and Malaysia said in February, 2013, that they planned [...]

Thailand

Thai people smuggling crackdown creates fresh dangers

The two boys in the back of the Thai police pickup truck were terrified. Dressed in ragged clothes, they had been caught close to a remote people smugglers’ camp in southern Thailand’s jungles where authorities found the remains of 26 people in shallow graves on the weekend. “When the police raided the camp we ran [...]

Three Thai officials, Burma man held over migrant deaths

Three local Thai officials and a Myanmar national have been arrested on suspicion of human trafficking after the remains of 26 migrants were found in a mass grave in southern Thailand, police said Monday. The decomposed bodies of migrants thought to have come from Myanmar or Bangladesh were exhumed over the weekend at an abandoned [...]

Thailand arrests 4, vows crackdown on human traffickers

Police arrested three Thai officials and a Myanmar citizen in a crackdown on a long-existing criminal network that smuggles persecuted ethnic Muslims from Myanmar into Thailand and holds them captive in camps where scores have died before they can pay ransoms demanded for their freedom. The arrests have exposed a link between the human traffickers [...]

Philippines

Lured by Malaysian jobs, Bangladeshis end up slaves in Thai jungles, report claims

Hundreds of thousands of Bangladeshi nationals in pursuit of jobs in Malaysia are believed to have fallen victim to the modern-day slave trade, amid claims of rampant human trafficking activities over the porous Malaysia-Thailand border, according to The Daily Star today. The Bangladesh-based English newspaper claimed that at least 250,000 Bangladeshis have been held in [...]

Malaysia Airlines begins selling off fleet

Malaysia Airline System (MAS), parent of Malaysia Airlines, is already seeing significant changes to operations and fleet, following the May 1 start date for new CEO Christoph Mueller, who is former CEO of Aer Lingus. The Sabah and Sarawak state governments have put forward a plan to purchase MAS’s regional arm, MASwings, and the carrier [...]

M’sia, S’pore discuss rail project, friendship bridge

Improved connectivity between Malaysia and Singapore would be top on the agenda in the meetings today between the two teams at the sixth Malaysia and Singapore leaders’ retreat. The Malaysian focus would be on the High Speed Rail linking Kuala Lumpur and Singapore, and Malaysian-proposed friendship bridge which is to replace the Causeway. The sixth [...]

Japan

Japanese lawmakers visit Beijing in bid to improve bilateral ties

A group of senior Diet members from the ruling and opposition parties arrived Monday in Beijing in the hopes of keeping up momentum for increased exchanges with China. The three-day trip by the group comes after prime minister Shinzo Abe and President Xi Jinping held talks, the second in the last six months, on the [...]

Korea fires warning shot at Japan over won-yen rate

South Korea’s top currency official has fired a warning at Japan: his nation has stepped up scrutiny of the yen’s tumble against the won after damage to exporter earnings. “Korean companies face bigger difficulties this year than last,” said Song In-chang, the South Korean finance ministry’s director general in charge of foreign exchange market policies. [...]

Japan will be last G-7 country to make solar power economically viable

One by one, Japan is turning off the lights at the giant oil-fired power plants that propelled it to the ranks of the world’s top industrialised nations. With nuclear power in the doldrums after the Fukushima disaster started in 2011, it’s solar energy that is becoming the alternative. Solar power is set to become profitable [...]

Korea

Korea’s casinos court China’s ‘low rollers’

The dealing rooms of Seoul’s foreigners-only casinos are echoing to the sound of Mandarin as operators target a new breed of ‘low-roller’ gamblers – Chinese shoppers. The country’s casino operators are luring Chinese tourists, offering goods like free rice cookers and Apple iPads in giveaways on the way to the gambling floor. Amid record visitor [...]

S. Korea, India to hold summit this month

South Korean President Park Geun-hye and Indian prime minister Narendra Modi will hold talks later this month to discuss ways to boost bilateral ties, the presidential office here said on Tuesday. Modi will be in South Korea from May 18-19 in his first visit to the country since taking office last May. The two leaders [...]

Korea set to demolish slum in the shadows of glitzy Gangnam

Close by the luxury high-rises of Seoul’s most expensive neighbourhood, 80-year-old Kim Ok-nyo burns charcoal to heat her two-room shack in Guryong, a shantytown of 2,000 residents. Close by the luxury high-rises of Seoul’s most expensive neighbourhood, 80-year-old Kim Ok-nyo burns charcoal to heat her two-room shack in Guryong, a shantytown of 2,000 residents. Demolition [...]

Hong Kong

HK police nab suspect in massive hunt for kidnappers

Hong Kong police on Monday arrested one of six suspects who fled with millions in ransom money after a kidnap, the city’s new police commissioner Stephen Lo said. City authorities embarked on a massive operation to hunt down six suspected kidnappers after the release of a woman Tuesday following a ransom payment of HK$28 million [...]

Tensions Simmer in HK in Lead Up to Vote

Political tensions continued in Hong Kong as pro-democracy legislators vowed to veto Beijing’s plan for electoral reform in the city. Democracy activists said they will canvas Hong Kong over the next several weeks, to educate the population and build support for direct elections of the city’s leader. Emily Lau, head of Hong Kong’s Democracy Party, [...]

West Australian producers set to secure dedicated aisle in HK supermarket

West Australian food producers are set to secure a dedicated aisle in a major Hong Kong supermarket following a ministerial trade visit. Minister for Agriculture and Food Ken Baston met with representatives from Hong Kong chain 759 Store about stocking produce from WA. Baston said the Department of Agriculture and Food (DAFWA) could act as [...]

Taiwan

China’s Xi meets Taiwan ruling party chief: Xinhua

Chinese Communist Party chief Xi Jinping warned on Monday against Taiwan being seen as a country as he met the head of the island’s ruling party, the first such encounter in seven years. Xi, who is also national president, welcomed Kuomintang (KMT) party head Eric Chu, the official Xinhua news agency reported. Photos showed them [...]

In China, Taiwan party leader calls for more global access

The head of Taiwan’s ruling Nationalist Party called for more chances for the island to participate in international organisations after a meeting Monday with Chinese President Xi Jinping, whose government views the territory as a renegade province. Eric Chu also affirmed his party’s support for a consensus reached between Chinese and Taiwanese negotiators in 1992 [...]

Taiwan, China Leaders Hold Talks Ahead of Elections

Top political leaders from Taiwan and China met Monday for the first time in six years. Political experts say the talks were aimed at increasing support for Taiwan’s ruling party before elections early next year. Taiwan’s Nationalist Party Chair Eric Chu arrived in China Saturday for a three-day visit. The official is a likely candidate [...]

Vietnam

Business Brief May 06

* Lix Detergent Company (LIX) obtained VND33 billion in net profit and VND387.9 billion in revenue in the first three months of this year, up l39 percent and 2 percent year-on-year respectively. The enterprise targets VND 104 billion in pre-tax profit on revenue of VND1.7 trillion this year. * Bank for Investment and Development of [...]

Taxman collects 2.5tr dong from 13,600 inspected firms

Local tax authorities have collected an extra VND2.5 trillion for the State budget from around 13,600 enterprises that were inspected in the first four months of this year. A Ministry of Finance report reveals around VND11.5 trillion in tax arrears carried forward from the end of last year was collected in January-April, thus sending tax [...]

One-third of provinces have no fresh FDI projects in Jan-Apr

Over one-third of the nation’s 63 cities and provinces found no new foreign direct investment (FDI) projects in the first four months of this year, leading to an FDI slump. According to the Foreign Investment Agency (FIA) under the Ministry of Planning and Investment, 23 provinces saw no new FDI approved in the period. For [...]