Society

Why Vietnam Isn’t Talking About 1968

Ngoc Dai, a 23-year-old soldier in the People’s Army of Vietnam, was fighting the Americans near the besieged Khe Sanh combat base when his unit received elating orders. They were to emerge from the jungle, “liberate” the old imperial capital of Hue in central Vietnam and stir up a nationwide popular uprising. It was January [...]

China confirms first human case of H7N4 bird flu

China confirms first human case of H7N4 bird flu

China has confirmed the first human case of H7N4 bird flu, prompting Hong Kong to issue a health warning for those travelling to the mainland during the busy Lunar New Year holiday. The strain was identified in a 68-year-old woman from the eastern province of Jiangsu who was admitted to hospital after falling ill on [...]

From Lu Han to Papi Jiang, Chinese celebrities are making a lot of money from social media

From pop idols to wanghong a phrase used to refer to internet celebrities China’s most popular influencers share one thing in common: They’re raking in a lot of money. The online celebrity economy was projected to be worth around 58 billion yuan ($8.4 billion) in 2016, according to data company CBNData. That made the sector [...]

Health

China confirms first human case of H7N4 bird flu

China confirms first human case of H7N4 bird flu

China has confirmed the first human case of H7N4 bird flu, prompting Hong Kong to issue a health warning for those travelling to the mainland during the busy Lunar New Year holiday. The strain was identified in a 68-year-old woman from the eastern province of Jiangsu who was admitted to hospital after falling ill on [...]

First Zika case in Singapore since September 2017: MOH

First Zika case in Singapore since September 2017: MOH

The Zika virus is back in Singapore, almost four months after the last reported case. The latest case was reported last Thursday (18 January), the National Environment Agency (NEA) said in an update on its website published on Tuesday (23 January). The website does not list any Zika cluster. It is the first Zika infection [...]

New bird flu case discovered in Korea

South Korea culled 197,000 chickens at a farm close to the capital city after a new case of avian influenza was discovered, the government said on Wednesday. The government has imposed a 48-hour ban on transporting poultry products in the north of the country, Efe news reported. The affected farm is located in Pocheon, 45 [...]

FinanceAsia

PacBridge Capital Partners (HK) Limited Makes Investment in Contextual Genomics Inc. – a Leading Canadian Cancer Genomics Company

PacBridge Capital Partners (HK) Limited Makes Investment in Contextual Genomics Inc. – a Leading Canadian Cancer Genomics Company

HONG KONG & VANCOUVER, Canada–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#cancergenomics–PacBridge Capital Partners (HK) Limited, a Hong Kong based investment firm, has committed to a C$12,000,000 facility to fund Contextual Genomics Inc., a leading Canadian cancer genomics company headquartered in Vancouver, Canada. Contextual Genomics has developed FIND ITTM, a proprietary molecular hotspot assay that screens for more than 140 somatic [...]

Asian stocks advance after Wall Street rebounds

Asian stocks advanced Friday after Wall Street rebounded from a two-day losing streak and Japanese inflation edged higher. KEEPING SCORE: The Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.1 percent to 3,271.65 and Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 added 0.4 percent to 21,821.64. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng advanced 0.8 percent to 31.226.61 and Seoul’s Kospi rose 1.1 percent to 2,439.88. [...]

NEC Promotes 5G with NTT DOCOMO by Testing Coordination Technology Between Cells

- Achieves stable high-quality communication regardless of location – TOKYO, Feb 23, 2018 – (JCN Newswire) – NEC Corporation (TSE: 6701) today announced the start of verification experiments(1) to achieve 5G wireless communications in cooperation with NTT DOCOMO, INC. In these experiments, coordinated control between Distribution Units (DUs) is being achieved by using a massive-element [...]

Regional

Diplomats: EU set to prepare sanctions on Burma generals

Any new travel bans and asset freezes would be the EU’s toughest measures yet to try to hold the military accountable for the abuses. The European Union will start preparing sanctions against Myanmar generals over killings of Rohingya Muslims by formally calling on the bloc’s foreign policy chief next week to draw up a list [...]

In a first, US Navy carrier to visit Vietnam following humanitarian mission

The US Navy will kick off its largest multilateral disaster-response preparedness mission conducted in the Indo-Pacific region on February 23, with a US Navy aircraft carrier scheduled to visit Vietnam in early March. The Carl Vinson’s separate visit amid the annual Pacific Partnership mission will be the first US aircraft carrier to visit Vietnam since [...]

Cambodia’s ruling party set to sweep Senate election

Cambodia’s ruling party set to sweep Senate election

The ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) of Hun Sen is poised to sweep a Senate election at the weekend, helping to consolidate the prime minister’s rule of more than 30 years amid a crackdown on the opposition. Sunday’s election for 58 members of the 62-strong Senate will see 123 members of parliament and 11,572 commune [...]

China

China takes over Anbang Insurance, prosecutes ex-chair

China took over Anbang Insurance Group for a year on Friday and said its former chair faces prosecution for “economic crimes” as the government stepped up its battle against corruption and excessive corporate debt. The China Insurance Regulatory Commission said Anbang, which emerged from obscurity in recent years to make a number of high-profile foreign [...]

China prosecuting tycoon who considered Kushner investment

The founder of one of China’s biggest insurers, who had discussed possibly investing in a Manhattan skyscraper owned by the family of US President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and adviser, will be prosecuted for financial offenses and regulators have taken control of his company, the government announced Friday. Anbang Insurance Group chair Wu Xiaohui is charged [...]

European Union MPs call on Xi Jinping to release Gui Minhai

Dozens of EU politicians have written to the Chinese president, Xi Jinping, demanding the immediate and unconditional release of Swedish bookseller Gui Minhai. A Communist party newspaper, meanwhile, has slammed international media scrutiny of the scandal as the work of arrogant rumour-mongers. Gui was seized from a Beijing-bound bullet train last month. It was the [...]

Malaysia

Malaysia urged to abolish female genital mutilation

Malaysia has been criticised by representatives from Muslim countries for allowing female genital mutilation (FGM) and calling for the practice to be abolished. Representatives questioned the practice of FGM by Malaysian Muslims at the Constructive Dialogue session at the 69th session of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) [...]

Government provides numerous subsidies to improve Malaysians’ lifestyles: Najib

Prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said the government has provided numerous subsidies to help to improve the livelihood of the people. Najib in his blog post said the subsidies that the government provided were high. For instances, hospital maternity care at semi-government hospitals would only cost about RM200 and at government hospitals, RM10. “I [...]

Malaysian police freeze leave for March to May in further indication of polling date

Leave for overseas travel for all Malaysian police personnel has been frozen for the period between March to May in preparation for the country’s coming general election, the police force ‘s management department director said. Commissioner Abdul Ghafar Rajab said the freeze, which came into effect on Wednesday (February 21), is applicable through March, April [...]

Indonesia

Hillside crashes onto Indonesian farmers; 5 dead, 18 missing

Farmers were working in their rice paddies on the Indonesian island of Java, when the soggy hillside above them collapsed under the weight of torrential rains, killing five people and leaving rescuers digging for 18 missing. Survivors described a sudden roar as Thursday’s landslide was unleashed, sweeping trees and everything else in its path toward [...]

British firefighter saves woman who fell into active Bali volcano

A British firefighter backpacking in Bali helped rescue a woman who fell into the crater of an active volcano by organising a human chain to lift her to safety. John Conway, who is currently enjoying a solo holiday on the Indonesian island, came to the aid of a woman after she fell 40 metres from [...]

Indonesian woman accused of Kim Jong Nam’s murder was ‘paid to fly to Macau’, his home in exile

A woman accused of poisoning the North Korean leader’s half-brother, Kim Jong Nam, at a Malaysian airport had been paid to fly to Macau, Kim’s home at the time, just days before the killing took place, her lawyer told a court on Thursday. Kim Jong Nam, half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and [...]

Singapore

Singapore to make jumping bail a crime

Singapore will criminalise skipping bail following the attempted escape of a man convicted in a high-profile fraud case at a megachurch, a senior government official said Thursday. In a case that gripped the city-state with a heady mix of religion, showbiz and fraud, six leaders from City Harvest Church were convicted in 2015 of pilfering [...]

Is Singapore over-spending in its defence?

Of course, we are not talking about doing away with defence spending but whether it is justified or just fear mongering from the government? For example, if I want to protect my car, in Singapore it is adequate just to buy in-cam digital camera, equipped with an alarm system and tracking device. To pay guards [...]

Singapore sounds an optimistic note but eyes tough year ahead as Asean chair

The foreign ministers of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) recently met in Singapore from February 4 to 6. It was the first meeting of regional foreign ministers since Singapore took over Asean’s rotating chairmanship from the Philippines earlier this year. The foreign ministers’ retreat is regarded as a ” The gathering was an [...]

Thailand

Thailand’s ranking in corruption fight improves to 96

Efforts to curb corruption in Thailand are paying dividends, with the Kingdom’s ranking in the latest global Corruption Perception Index rising to 96 from 101 last year. The index, prepared by Transparency International, ranks 180 countries and territories by perceived levels of public-sector corruption. Nine key assessment sources are used to compile the index, including [...]

Thai junta under pressure to tackle pollution ‘crisis’

Environmental activists presented the Thai junta with an hourglass filled with dust on Thursday as part of a plea to tackle the hazardous levels of air pollution that have hung over the capital in recent weeks. Bangkok, one of the world’s top tourist destinations, has been shrouded in smog for nearly a month, with authorities [...]

Thailand says ‘not concerned’ about Thaksin’s tour

Thailand is not concerned about the movement of fugitive former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra and his sister, also an ousted former leader, after recent visits by the pair to several Asian cities and meetings with members of their party. The Shinawatras have dominated Thai politics for nearly two decades and wield significant influence through allies [...]

Philippines

Duterte ‘Is No Autocrat’: The Philippines Hits Back at US Intelligence Claims

Duterte ‘Is No Autocrat’: The Philippines Hits Back at US Intelligence Claims

He’s encouraged shooting women in the genitals, bragged about killing his enemies, and called journalists legitimate targets for assassination, but, surprisingly, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte takes umbrage at being called an autocrat. His spokesperson has lashed out in response to a US intelligence report released last week which branded the strongman among the regional threats [...]

Corruption Is Still A Big Problem In The Philippines

President Rodrigo Duterte’s death squads have killed the democratic process in the Philippines, and they haven’t killed the system that reproduces and perpetuates corruption. In fact, the Philippines is getting more corrupt under Duterte, dropping 13 notches in the 2017 Corruption Index published recently by Transparency International. That’s on top of six notches it dropped [...]

‘Justice will come’: jailed critic of Philippines’ Duterte

A year after being jailed on charges she insists were concocted to silence her, a top critic of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte says she believes justice is coming. Senator Leila de Lima has been pursuing Duterte for almost a decade, beginning with allegations he directed a death squad against suspected criminals while mayor of the [...]

Japan

Japan wins WTO dispute over Fukushima-related food

The World Trade Organisation on Thursday largely upheld a Japanese complaint against South Korea’s import bans and additional testing requirements imposed on Japanese seafood because of the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster. In a ruling that can be appealed by either side, a WTO dispute panel said that South Korea’s measures were initially justified but that [...]

Can Japan compete with China over development aid?

Can Japan compete with China over development aid?

Japan is rethinking the ways in which its official development assistance is provided to developing nations in order to promote its vision for a “free and open Indo-Pacific strategy.” Julian Ryall reports from Tokyo. Japan’s net official development assistance (ODA) comes to around $10.4 billion ( euro 8.5 billion) a year, representing 0.2 percent of [...]

Japan’s inflation steady in Jan, keeps BOJ exit from stimulus distant

Japan’s core consumer inflation was steady in January from a year earlier in a sign a strengthening economy has yet to prompt companies to raise prices, a challenge policy makers have yet to overcome despite years of massive stimulus. Subdued inflation has forced the Bank of Japan to maintain ultra-loose policy even as the economic [...]

Korea

US asks UN to blacklist North Korean entities for smuggling

US asks UN to blacklist North Korean entities for smuggling

The United States asked the United Nations Security Council on Friday to blacklist a number of North Korean entities involved in smuggling oil and coal in violation of sanctions resolutions. The US request came after President Donald Trump announced new sanctions against North Korea-linked shipping assets in a package he described as the “heaviest” ever [...]

N Korean Cheerleader Caught Clapping for US Skaters Told to Cut It Out

A North Korean cheerleader was caught on camera briefly applauding US figure skating pair Alexa Scimeca-Knierim and Chris Knierim at the Winter Olympicsbefore a colleague quickly told her to stop. The interaction, which lasted only a few seconds, occurred during a figure skating event on February 15. It provided another bizarre insight into the lives [...]

N Korea calls UN chief ‘henchman’ of the US

N Korea calls UN chief ‘henchman’ of the US

North Korea has branded UN Secretary general Antonio Guterres as a “kind of henchman” of the United States after he praised sanctions against Pyongyang North Korea on Thursday accused UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres of being a “kind of henchman who is representing the United States” after the UN chief said sanctions were essential to pressure [...]

Hong Kong

Disney family magic wanes in HK as Macau’s lights dazzle

When Chinese tourists choose a family travel destination, Hong Kong Disneyland would seem like a logical choice. But it’s the nearby gambling hub of Macau that has all the momentum. Tourists are flocking to Macau, with record arrivals from China last year, and Hong Kong itself is seeing a rebound in mainland visitors, with a [...]

HK harbour gets star attraction with sculpture park

Hong Kong’s harbourfront is known for glistening skyscrapers and the sight of containerships navigating busy shipping lanesbut a new art project has added a giant pumpkin, a map of the stars and a pair of disembodied legs to the famous skyline. The Harbour Arts Sculpture Park, which officially opened on Thursday (February 22), is a [...]

HK Disneyland transformation now underway

Hong Kong Disneyland is the fifth Disney Theme Park location to open, the second in Asia. After the original Disneyland Park in Anaheim California came Walt Disney World in Orlando. Then Disney took the show on the road and went international with Tokyo Disneyland, followed by Disneyland Paris. It was a tough act to follow [...]

Taiwan

US think tank describes Chinese attack plan against Taiwan

Plan could include cyber attack and assassinations in US A study from a leading United States think tank describes how China could approach and plan for a potential invasion of Taiwan, reports said Thursday. In “Coping with Surprise in Great Power Conflicts” for the centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), Mark Cancian, a retired [...]

Taiwan earns money off Korean fighter jet purchase

144 updated F-16 fighter jets ready in Taiwan by 2022 South Korea’s recent purchase of F-16V fighter jets will put money into American and Taiwanese pockets. Taiwan and the United States were the initial investors of the F-16V, with Taiwan originally fronting $38 billion toward the aircraft’s development, according to Now News. Even though the [...]

Taiwan to ban disposable plastic items by 2030

Taiwan is planning a blanket ban on single-use plastic items including straws, cups and shopping bags by 2030, officials said on Thursday (February 22), with restaurants facing new restrictions from next year. It is the latest push by Taiwan to cut waste and pollution after introducing a recycling programme and charges for plastic bags. The [...]

Vietnam

Final version of Trans-Pacific trade deal released

The final version of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) was released on February 21, moving the pact a step closer to an official signing by the 11 member economies early next month. More than 20 provisions have been suspended or altered in the final text, including rules around intellectual property, since [...]

Deputy PM directs improving SOEs’ efficiency

Deputy prime minister Vuong Dinh Hue has urged ministries, agencies and localities to promptly fulfill assigned tasks regarding equitisation and divestment in State-owned enterprises (SOEs), towards making them more transparent, healthy and efficient. He requested that SOEs restructure themselves in terms of apparatus, personnel, strategy, governance, finance, technology and products. He urged completely fixing shortcomings [...]

EVN resolved to ensure electricity supply

The Electricity of Vietnam (EVN) will invest in power projects within local and national electricity development planning schemes from 2016-2020. This is the major task set in the group’s five-year business plan recently approved by deputy prime minister Trinh Dinh Dung. Under the plan, EVN will develop renewable energy and improve environmental protection during the [...]