Society

6 good reasons why you need to educate your child about sex early

Grade Expectations is a weekly feature on education in Singapore. Expect fun activities, useful tips and insightful news on learning. It’s not just about your child’s grades it’s about raising a great child! The birds and the bees are an uncomfortable subject for most parents, especially Asian ones. Most adults flinch at the mention of [...]

Arctic wolves to go on display at Chinese zoo

Five Arctic wolves are to go on display at a zoo and aquarium in northern China. The animals will be kept at Polarland in Harbin in Heilongjiang province, the China News Service said. The animals have come from Serbia and will first be kept under quarantine for 30 days. All the animals are about six [...]

Philippine bet crowned Miss Asia Global 2017

The Philippines once again proved that it is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to beauty pageants. This after the country’s representative, Mary Eve Adeline Escoto, was crowned Miss Asia Global 2017 in Kerala, India on Tuesday, November 21. According to the local pageant website Powerhouse PH, Escoto also won Best in [...]

Health

Korea confirms H5N6 bird flu at duck farm, raises bird flu alert level

Korea confirms H5N6 bird flu at duck farm, raises bird flu alert level

South Korea on Sunday said it had confirmed an outbreak of highly pathogenic H5N6 bird flu at a duck farm in the south west of the country and raised its bird flu alert level to the highest ranking. The virus was discovered on a farm on Saturday with some 12,000 ducks in Gochang county, over [...]

New H7N9 bird flu strain in China has pandemic potential: study

New H7N9 bird flu strain in China has pandemic potential: study

Lab experiments on a new strain of the H7N9 bird flu circulating in China suggest the virus can transmit easily among animals and can cause lethal disease, raising alarm that the virus has the potential to trigger a global human pandemic, researchers reported on Thursday. The H7N9 virus has been circulating in China since 2013, [...]

Across Asia, liver cancer is linked to herbal remedies: study

Researchers have uncovered widespread evidence of a link between traditional Chinese herbal remedies and liver cancer across Asia, a study said Wednesday. The findings suggest stronger measures are needed to prevent people from consuming chemicals called aristolochic acids (AA), which are derived from the woody vines of the Aristolochia plant family, said the report in [...]

FinanceAsia

New Technavio Report Identifies Top Trends for B2C E-commerce Market in China

New Technavio Report Identifies Top Trends for B2C E-commerce Market in China

BEIJING–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#B2C–The latest market research report by Technavio on the business-to-consumer (B2C) e-commerce market in China predicts a CAGR of around 28.78% during the period 2017-2021. The increase in Internet and smartphone penetration, free shipping and unproblematic return policies, easy payment options, and growing seasonal sales are the top factors expected to drive the business-to-consumer [...]

New Technavio Report Identifies Top Trends for Dental Consumables Market in China

New Technavio Report Identifies Top Trends for Dental Consumables Market in China

BEIJING–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#China–The latest market research report by Technavio on the dental consumables market in China predicts a CAGR of 7.27% during the period 2017-2021. The increasing incidence of oral issues and dental disorders, the expansion of dental clinics and hospitals, and an increase in demand for cosmetic dentistry are the top factors expected to drive [...]

Asian stocks flat as Fed minutes show support for rate hike

Asian stock markets were largely flat on Thursday with investors in the US markets going on a Thanksgiving holiday and the Fed minutes largely in line with investor expectations that the Fed will soon raise interest rates for a third time next month. Japan was closed on a holiday. KEEPING SCORE: China’s Shanghai Composite Index [...]

Regional

An outpost of Catholicism in Burma prepares for the Pope

Father William’s 16-strong flock on Myanmar’s eastern border is one of the Catholic Church’s tiniest outposts, but next week they will join a tide of 200,000 faithful in Yangon for a historic mass led by Pope Francis. The Pope, renowned for powerful entreaties for peace no matter how highly-charged the issue, arrives on Monday in [...]

Two Burma nationals plead guilty over attempted abduction

Two Myanmar nationals who had planned to kidnap and murder a fellow countryman pleaded guilty to charges of attempted abduction at the State Courts on Tuesday (21 November). Phyo Min Naing, 34, and Zaw Min Hlaing, 40 were part of a group of four, all Myanmar nationals, who tried to kidnap Aye Maung Maung Thet, [...]

US calls Burma moves against Rohingya ‘ethnic cleansing’

US calls Burma moves against Rohingya ‘ethnic cleansing’

The United States on Wednesday called the Myanmar military operation against the Rohingya population “ethnic cleansing” and threatened targeted sanctions against those responsible for what it called “horrendous atrocities.” “The situation in northern Rakhine state constitutes ethnic cleansing against the Rohingya,” US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said in a statement, using a term he [...]

China

China is pumping a lot of cash into its economy to calm investors

China has been pumping a lot of cash into its system to lift market sentiment, as the world’s second-largest economy walks a thin line between curbing debt and keeping everything running smoothly. Last week, the People’s Bank of China injected cash totalling 810 billion Chinese yuan ($122.4 billion) in five straight days of daily liquidity [...]

Sixteen China tourists sustain minor injuries as tour bus crashes in Beaufort

Sixteen China tourists escaped with minor injuries when their tour bus ended up in a drain along Jalan Lumat Central, here today. The tour group was headed to Kota Kinabalu after touring the Klias river here when the accident occurred at 7.35pm. The bus driver is believed to have lost control of his vehicle before [...]

Australia urges strong, sustained US engagement in Asia, warns on China

Australia called on Thursday on the United States to build a strong presence in Asia and bolster ties with “like-minded” partners while warning against China’s rising influence. A more insular United States would be detrimental to the liberal nature of the world’s “rules-based order”, the government said in a 115-page foreign policy white paper. “Australia [...]

Malaysia

Malaysia’s GDP at 3-Year High: ETFs in Focus

Malaysia’s Department of Statistics said that the country’s GDP grew 6.2 percent year over year in the third quarter of 2017 compared with 5.8 percent in the second quarter and 4.3 percent in the year-ago quarter. The Malaysian Ringgit increased after the data release. Malaysia’s central bank, Bank Negara Malaysia, left its Overnight Policy Rate [...]

Selection of contractors for govt projects must be via open tender, says PAC

The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) today stressed that the selection of contractors for government projects must be done through open tender. These include the construction of religious secondary schools (SMKA). PAC chair Datuk Seri Hasan Arifin said the projects must also be implemented by the Public Works Department (PWD). “The tender process should be carried [...]

Rohingya Refugees Claim They Are Not Given Basic Rights In Malaysia

Malaysia has been very vocal in its support for Myanmar’s shunned Rohingya community and made sure the support goes far and wide. “Malaysia believes that the Rohingya humanitarian crisis needs to be settled through regional cooperation, especially among Asean countries “Although Myanmar is an Asean member, we want to make it clear that the Rohingya [...]

Indonesia

Malaysia, Indonesia want talks to review BCA, BTA to be finalised immediately

Malaysia and Indonesia want negotiations to review the decades-old Border Trade Agreement (BTA) and Border Cross Agreement (BCA) between the two countries to be finalised immediately. Prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and Indonesian president Joko Widodo have called for talks to review the BTA and BCA to be hastened as the agreements will lay [...]

Malaysia, Indonesia say EU palm resolution will affect millions

Millions of people running small-time oil palm plantations will suffer if the European Parliament goes ahead with “unfair” measures that could curb palm oil use, the world’s two largest palm oil producers said on Wednesday. In April, the European Parliament backed a call for greater vetting of palm and other vegetable oils used in biofuels [...]

Snake on a train: Indonesian kills serpent with bare hands

An Indonesian man who used his bare hands to kill a snake that was discovered slithering on a busy commuter train has become an Internet hero. The train made an emergency stop after the reptile was spotted lurking on a baggage rack in a carriage headed to Jakarta from Bogor, south of the capital. Smartphone [...]

Singapore

Foreign worker who acted as unlicensed employment agent fined $30,000

A 36-year-old Bangladeshi foreign worker was fined $30,000 on Tuesday (21 November) for conducting employment agency (EA) activities without a valid EA licence. According to a news release from the Ministry of Manpower (MOM), Roy Tapon Kumar pleaded guilty to one charge under Section 6(2) of the Employment Agencies Act (EAA). He also faced two [...]

Singapore Upgrades 2017 Growth Forecast to as Much as 3.5pct

Singapore raised its economic growth forecast for this year to 3 percent to 3.5 percent after third-quarter data beat projections on the back of stronger exports and manufacturing. Highlights of GDP Report: Gross domestic product rose at a seasonally adjusted, annualised rate of 8.8 percent in the third quarter from the previous three months, higher [...]

Singapore listed one of Asia Pacific’s top real estate investment markets

After two years of falling rents caused by a glut of supply and a sluggish economy, the promise of a bottom in the city-state’s office market pushed its ranking… After two years of falling rents caused by a glut of supply and a sluggish economy, the promise of a bottom in the city-state’s office market [...]

Thailand

Thailand seeks Malaysia’s help to send back Uighur escapees

Thailand is seeking Malaysia’s cooperation in sending back Uighurs who are believed to have slipped into the neighbouring country, after escaping from an Immigration detention centre in Sadao yesterday. According to deputy prime minister Gen Prawit Wongsuwan, five of the 20 Uighurs escapees had been recaptured, but he did not furnish details on it, the [...]

China urges Thailand to find Muslim Uighurs quickly after dramatic cell break

China said on Tuesday it has urged Thailand to “quickly bring to justice” 20 ethnic Uighur Muslims from China who broke out of a Thai detention centre through a hole in the wall, using blankets to climb to the ground. Twenty-five Uighurs dug through their cell wall with broken tiles to make their dramatic escape [...]

Thailand seeks to prosecute ousted PM Thaksin in absentia in two graft cases

Thailand seeks to prosecute ousted PM Thaksin in absentia in two graft cases

Thailand is seeking to prosecute ousted prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra for graft under a law that allows politicians to be tried in absentia, an official said on Tuesday, months after Thaksin’s sister was sentenced to jail in her absence. Thailand is divided broadly between those backing Thaksin and his sister, former prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra, [...]

Philippines

Ships, aircraft search Philippine Sea for 3 missing in crash

Ships, aircraft search Philippine Sea for 3 missing in crash

US and Japanese ships and aircraft were searching in the Philippine Sea on Thursday for three sailors missing since a US Navy aircraft crashed a day earlier. Eight people were rescued about 40 minutes after the crash of the C-2 “Greyhound” transport aircraft Wednesday afternoon, the Navy said. They were taken aboard the USS Ronald [...]

US Navy aircraft en route to Philippine Sea crashes

An aircraft of the United States Navy with 11 crew and passengers crashed into the ocean while en route to the Philippine Sea. According to a report from the Commander of the US 7th Fleet, the aircraft crashed into the ocean southeast of Okinawa, Japan at approximately 2:45 p.m. on Wednesday. The aircraft was on [...]

World Bank: More Philippine firms report unfilled vacancies as demand for ‘soft skills’ rises

More Philippine companies have reported inadequate workforce due to lack of qualified candidates, according to a World Bank report that also shows rising demand for workers with enough soft skills despite significant progress in expanding access to education. The number of Philippine firms with many unfilled vacancies climbed to 30 percent between 2009 and 2015, [...]

Japan

8 found alive after US Navy aircraft crashes into Pacific off Japan

8 found alive after US Navy aircraft crashes into Pacific off Japan

A United States Navy aircraft carrying 11 crew and passengers crashed into the Pacific Ocean Wednesday. According to the Japan-based 7th Seventh Fleet, it happened around 2:45 p.m. off the coast of Okinawa. “Our entire focus is on finding all of our Sailors,” said Rear Adm. Marc H. Dalton, Commander, Task Force 70. “US and [...]

Navy Aircraft With 11 Aboard Crashes Into Waters Off Japan

A United States Navy aircraft carrying 11 crew and passengers crashed Wednesday southeast of Okinawa, Japan, the fifth accident this year for the Seventh Fleet, the Navy’s largest overseas fleet. Eight of those aboard were rescued, and American and Japanese naval forces were searching for the other three, the Seventh Fleet said in a statement. [...]

China is flying bombers and spy planes near Japan and telling Japan to ‘not make a fuss’ about it

On Saturday, a Chinese People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) Tu-154MD electronic-intelligence aircraft flew between the Japanese islands of Okinawa and Miyako an area known as the Miyako Strait. The following day, four Xian H-6K long-range bombers and one Shaanxi Y-8 electronic-warfare aircraft also flew through the strait. The H-6K bombers can carry a payload [...]

Korea

Korea quiet for quake-delayed college entrance exam

Korea quiet for quake-delayed college entrance exam

An annual hush descended upon South Korea Thursday as hundreds of thousands of students sat the crucial national college entrance exam, delayed for a week by a rare earthquake. Educational authorities had to change four exam sites at Pohang, affecting about 2,000 candidates, after a 5.4-magnitude quake shook the southern city a week ago. More [...]

N Korea criticises US over designation as terror sponsor

North Korea on Wednesday called US President Donald Trump’s decision to relist it as a state sponsor of terrorism a “serious provocation” that justifies its development of nuclear weapons. In the country’s first public response to its return to the American blacklist, the official Korean Central News Agency said North Korea has no connection to [...]

Cold War drama caught on video as N. Korean soldier escapes

Cold War drama caught on video as N. Korean soldier escapes

It’s 3:11 p.m. on a cold, gray day on the North Korean side of the most heavily armed border in the world, and a lone soldier is racing toward freedom. His dark olive-green jeep speeds down a straight, tree-lined road, past drab, barren fields and, headlights shining, across the replacement for the Bridge of No [...]

Hong Kong

Hang Seng hovers around 30,000 mark as traders weigh strength of equities

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index hovered around the 30,000-point mark throughout Thursday morning, as traders gauged the strength of the market after the benchmark rallied to within less than 6 per cent of its all-time high on Wednesday. The index traded rangebound before ending 0.1 per cent up or 20.51 points to 30,024 for the [...]

Property tycoon ready to keep HK$1 billion charity promise as HK stocks hit 10-year high

Property tycoon Lee Shau-kee is ready to honour his promise to donate HK$1 billion (US$128 million) to charitable projects after the Hang Seng Index climbed above 30,000 points on Wednesday, its highest level in a decade. The index, a benchmark of 51 constituent stocks, ended at 30,003.49, leaving it 5.4 per cent shy of the [...]

HK justice minister Rimsky Yuen expected to step down in January

HK justice minister Rimsky Yuen expected to step down in January

Secretary for Justice Rimsky Yuen Kwok-keung is expected to resign in January to resume his private practice in a top barrister’s chamber in the heart of the city, the Post has learned. A source said Yuen was expected to leave the government after the mainland’s top legislative body, the National People’s Congress Standing Committee, endorsed [...]

Taiwan

Winning numbers for Taiwan’s NT$162 million ‘Grand Fortune’ jackpot

Wednesday’s winning numbers for the NT$162 million ‘Grand Fortune’ jackpot With a jackpot having reached NT$162,750,992 (US$5,428,371), the winning numbers for Taiwan’s “Grand Fortune” (???) on Wednesday were 19, 22, 29, 25, 11, 32, and 15 and the special number was 20, according to Taiwan Lottery. Also on Wednesday, the winning numbers for the “Jin [...]

Magnitude 5.5 quake jolts southern Taiwan

A magnitude 5.5 earthquake rocked residents in Chiayi with a level 5 of intensity being felt A magnitude 5.5 earthquake struck Chiayi County late Wednesday evening (November 22) at 10:20 p.m., with an intensity level of 5 being felt in Chiayi, according to the Central Weather Bureau (CWB). The epicenter of Wednesday’s 5.5 temblor was [...]

Taiwan stocks hit 27-year intraday high

Taiwan stocks followed the lead of the US Nasdaq index, hitting an intraday high not seen in nearly three decades, before slipping back to close just 0.4 percent higher. Stocks on the Taiwan Weighted index closely follow the tech-heavy US Nasdaq index, particularly the likes of Apple. Taiwan’s main index has many stocks which make [...]

Vietnam

Apec 2017: Singapore press hails Vietnam’s economic reform

The urbanisation rate in Vietnam grew rapidly in the past decade from 30 percent in 2007 to 40 percent in 2017, according to Singapore-based United Morning Post. In an article about Vietnam’s economic reform and hosting of Apec Year 2017, the newspaper cited data demonstrating the country’s progress since the beginning of reforms in 1986. [...]

More incentives needed to develop special economic zones

The aim of the draft Law on Special Administrative, Economic Units is to create a legal foundation for the formation, management, and operation of 3 special administrative-economic zones, namely Van Don in Quang Ninh, Phu Quoc in Kien Giang, and Bac Van Phong in Khanh Hoa province. The bill is expected to create breakthroughs in [...]

The billion-USD Van Don investment case

One of the phenomenal investment this year is Van Don (Quang Ninh). Similar to Phu Quoc, the 551-square kilometre archipelago is changing rapidly after being selected as one of three candidates to pilot the “special economic zone” model for the first time in Vietnam. Will the new coat help Van Don go further on the [...]