• Indonesia sending back 547 containers of waste from West

    Indonesia sending back 547 containers of waste from West

    Indonesia is sending 547 containers of waste back to wealthy nations after discovering they were contaminated with used plastic and hazardous materials, amid a growing backlash in Southeast Asia against being a dumping ground for the developed world’s trash. Nine containers with at least 135 tonnes of waste were sent back to Australia on Wednesday, […]

    20-Sep-2019 Intellasia | AP | 6:02 AM
  • Malaysia, Indonesia shut thousands of schools over forest fires haze

    Malaysia, Indonesia shut thousands of schools over forest fires haze

    Thousands of schools were shuttered across Malaysia and Indonesia Thursday, affecting at least 1.7 million pupils, officials said, as toxic haze from rampant forest fires sent air quality plummeting. Nearly 2,500 schools were ordered to shut their doors in Malaysia — including nearly 300 in the smog-hit capital Kuala Lumpur — over soaring health concerns […]

    20-Sep-2019 Intellasia | AFP | 6:02 AM
  • Thailand culls 200 pigs amid heightened fears over African swine fever

    Thailand culls 200 pigs amid heightened fears over African swine fever

    Thailand has culled more than 200 pigs this week, authorities said on Wednesday, in the first such action amid heightened fears of a potential outbreak of African swine fever. Thailand has yet to report an outbreak of African swine fever among its pigs, though neighbouring Myanmar, Laos and Cambodia have all confirmed cases of the […]

    20-Sep-2019 Intellasia | Reuters | 6:02 AM
  • ‘Too awful’: Anger at acquittals in Fukushima case

    ‘Too awful’: Anger at acquittals in Fukushima case

    As a Tokyo court pronounced three former executives not guilty in the only criminal trial over the Fukushima nuclear disaster, a woman’s voice cut through the silence from the gallery: “Unbelievable!” More than eight years after the worst nuclear accident since Chernobyl, only three people have faced criminal prosecution in relation to the Fukushima disaster, […]

    20-Sep-2019 Intellasia | AFP | 6:02 AM
  • Japan and US drills simulate response to a seaborne invasion, reflecting anxieties about China

    Japan and US drills simulate response to a seaborne invasion, reflecting anxieties about China

    Japan and US drills simulate response to a seaborne invasion, reflecting anxieties about China Japanese and US military units have for the first time carried out joint manoeuvres using anti-shipping missiles, simulating a response to a seaborne invasion of Japanese territory. The exercises were conducted this week at the Oyanohara training facility in Kyushu, southern […]

    20-Sep-2019 Intellasia | AFP | 6:02 AM
  • China, US close to agreeing interim trade war deal, Beijing expert predicts

    China, US close to agreeing interim trade war deal, Beijing expert predicts

    China and the United States are expected to reach an interim trade deal in Washington next month, with Beijing agreeing to buy more American farm products and the Trump administration postponing further tariff increases and easing restrictions on Chinese telecommunications company Huawei, a researcher affiliated with the Chinese government said. A Chinese delegation led by […]

    20-Sep-2019 Intellasia | South China Morning Post | 6:02 AM
  • Protest safety fears put paid to HK climate march

    Protest safety fears put paid to HK climate march

    Student climate activists in Hong Kong have abandoned a planned march on Friday as ongoing anti-government protests heighten safety concerns. The event, including a school strike, was to be part of a global student movement demanding governments take action to limit climate change. Instead, the student-led Climate Action Hong Kong called on young people to […]

    20-Sep-2019 Intellasia | South China Morning Post | 6:02 AM
  • China rebukes Washington after HK activists make Congress plea

    China rebukes Washington after HK activists make Congress plea

    Prominent activist Joshua Wong (L) and Cantopop star Denise Ho (C) testified before a congressional commission about the pro-democracy movement in Hong Kong Beijing Thursday accused Washington of “adding fuel to the fire” of Hong Kong unrest after leaders of the city’s pro-democracy movement appealed directly to US lawmakers to exert pressure on China. Activists […]

    20-Sep-2019 Intellasia | AFP | 6:02 AM
  • Indonesia is about to pass a law that would criminalise sex outside of marriage

    Indonesia is about to pass a law that would criminalise sex outside of marriage

    Indonesia is set to pass a highly controversial new penal code that would criminalise consensual sex outside of marriage and effectively outlaw same-sex relations, in a move rights groups have criticised as a violation of basic rights. The draft code, which will also introduce penalties for insulting the president, is set to be adopted as […]

    20-Sep-2019 Intellasia | CNN | 6:02 AM
  • US, Chinese trade deputies face off in Washington amid deep differences

    US, Chinese trade deputies face off in Washington amid deep differences

    US and Chinese deputy trade negotiators were set to resume face-to-face talks on Thursday for the first time in nearly two months as the world’s two largest economies try to bridge deep policy differences and find a way out of a bitter and protracted trade war. The negotiations, on Thursday and Friday, are aimed at […]

    20-Sep-2019 Intellasia | Reuters | 6:02 AM
  • HK could roll out relief measures to buttress economy, amid domestic unrest and US-China trade war

    HK could roll out relief measures to buttress economy, amid domestic unrest and US-China trade war

    Hong Kong’s finance chief has said more relief measures will be rolled out if necessary, warning the protest-plagued city’s economy could enter a recession. In an interview on Wednesday with nationalist tabloid Global Times, Financial Secretary Paul Chan Mo-po also said he was not worried about growing competition from Shanghai and Shenzhen, as the city […]

    20-Sep-2019 Intellasia | South China Morning Post | 6:02 AM
  • US Congress to advance ‘HK Human Rights and Democracy’ bill

    US Congress to advance ‘HK Human Rights and Democracy’ bill

    US congressional committees are due to start voting next week on legislation supporting human rights in Hong Kong, with measures under consideration including annual reviews of the Chinese territory’s special economic status and the imposition of sanctions on those who undermine its autonomy. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi held a news conference on Wednesday […]

    20-Sep-2019 Intellasia | Reuters | 6:02 AM

Society

What is dengue, and why is it so widespread this year?

Dubbed “breakbone fever”, dengue is one of the world’s leading mosquito-borne illnesses and infects tens of millions across the globe annually. Around half of the planet’s population live in at-risk areas, mainly in Latin America, Africa and Asia. Outbreaks have ravaged Southeast Asia this year, infecting hundreds of thousands, killing hundreds, and crippling health care […]

Leave those kids alone

New Unicef campaign aims to make violence against children a thing of the past A father begins to raise his voice at the back of a restaurant, complaining about his daughter’s bad grades. The conversation ends with the sound of slaps. The customers, who have heard the girl plead for her father to stop, look […]

Ha Long heli: Vietnam launches chopper rides in famous bay

Most visitors to Vietnam’s famed Ha Long Bay opt for cruise views of the UNESCO heritage site but from Friday tourists can hop on a helicopter to see the area’s famous karst rock formations from the skies. Nervous flyers beware. A pair of five-seater helicopters soared up to 300 metres (1,000 feet) to offer passengers […]

Health

What is dengue, and why is it so widespread this year?

Dubbed “breakbone fever”, dengue is one of the world’s leading mosquito-borne illnesses and infects tens of millions across the globe annually. Around half of the planet’s population live in at-risk areas, mainly in Latin America, Africa and Asia. Outbreaks have ravaged Southeast Asia this year, infecting hundreds of thousands, killing hundreds, and crippling health care […]

Vietnam confirms first African swine fever cases on three farms

Vietnam confirms first African swine fever cases on three farms

African swine fever has been detected on three farms in Vietnam, authorities said on Tuesday, the first confirmed cases of the highly contagious disease in the Southeast Asia country. All pigs on the farms located in Hung Yen and Thai Binh provinces, southeast of the capital Hanoi, were culled, the Animal Health Department said in […]

Thirteen countries from Asia and the Pacific plan scale-up of PrEP and HIV self-testing

Representatives from 13 countries across Asia and the Pacific gathered in Bangkok, Thailand, from 29 to 31 October to develop road maps to implement and expand pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) and HIV self-testing in the region. In discussions on building capacity for the rollout of PrEP and HIV testing innovations in Asia and the Pacific, policy-makers, […]

FinanceAsia

Eisai to Present Latest Data on Lemborexant at World Sleep Congress

TOKYO, Sept 19, 2019 – (JCN Newswire) – Eisai Co., Ltd. has announced that latest data on lemborexant, an investigational sleep-wake regulation agent being studied for the treatment of sleep-wake disorders, including insomnia and Irregular Sleep-Wake Rhythm Disorder (ISWRD) associated with Alzheimer’s disease/dementia will be presented at World Sleep Congress (World Sleep 2019), from September […]

Honda’s Cumulative Worldwide Power Products Production Reaches 150 million Units

TOKYO, Sept 19, 2019 – (JCN Newswire) – Honda Motor Co., Ltd. today announced that the company’s cumulative worldwide power products production reached the 150 million-unit milestone this month. Based on the original spirit of Honda to utilize technology to help people, Honda Life Creation business, which includes power products business, began in 1953, with […]

Professor Usha GOSWAMI and Sir Fazle Hasan ABED KCMG Named Yidan Prize Laureates for 2019

HONG KONG, Sept 19, 2019 – (Media OutReach) – The Yidan Prize, the world’s largest international prize in education, announces its 2019 laureates. Professor Usha GOSWAMI, Professor of Cognitive Developmental Neuroscience at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom, has been awarded the Yidan Prize for Education Research, while Sir Fazle Hasan ABED KCMG, […]

Regional

Why Burma’s Wa always get what they want

Shops, hotels and restaurants in Panghsang, the unofficial capital of Myanmar’s northeastern area controlled by the United Wa State Army (UWSA), display signs in three languages: Wa, Chinese and Bamar. But while Wa, Chinese and other ethnic dialects are widely spoken in the city, very few residents can speak or read, Bamar. Other social and […]

UN experts urge probe of Rohingya killings in Bangladesh

UN human rights experts have raised new concerns about the treatment of Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh following a deadly backlash over the killing of a ruling party official. The experts called for an “impartial” investigation into the deaths of at least six Rohingya men in gunfights with police after they were named as suspects in […]

Rohingya in Bangladesh face tide of hostility as welcome turns to fear

When more than 730,000 Rohingya fled into Bangladesh from Myanmar in 2017, Bangladeshi journalist Sharif Azad was sympathetic to the plight of his fellow Muslims, survivors of a military-led crackdown the United Nations has branded genocide. The reporter, from the southern corner of Bangladesh that has become home to the world’s largest refugee settlement, said […]

China

Top Chinese state media editor calls out major internet crackdown

One of Beijing’s best known propagandists has pushed back against the government’s internet crackdown ahead of the upcoming 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China on October 1. In the lead up to the major event, the Communist Party has tightened its already strong grip on the country’s internet, making it […]

Chinese internet chef pays compensation to family of girl killed ‘imitating popcorn trick’

An internet celebrity has agreed to pay compensation to a family in east China whose teenage daughter died from injuries suffered in an explosion while trying to make popcorn in a tin can, similar to the way in which the online star did it in a video. The accident happened on August 22 when the […]

China, US close to agreeing interim trade war deal, Beijing expert predicts

China, US close to agreeing interim trade war deal, Beijing expert predicts

China and the United States are expected to reach an interim trade deal in Washington next month, with Beijing agreeing to buy more American farm products and the Trump administration postponing further tariff increases and easing restrictions on Chinese telecommunications company Huawei, a researcher affiliated with the Chinese government said. A Chinese delegation led by […]

Malaysia

Putrajaya sets new curbs to direct tenders, adds safeguards to special cases

The federal government will impose new conditions that will limit direct tenders to only exceptional cases, prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad announced today. The move builds on other anti-corruption measures the Pakatan Harapan administration has planned for the near future in its bid to rid the civil service of chronic corruption. “For example, like […]

Let staff work from home amid worsening haze, HR Ministry tells employers

The Ministry of Human Resources (MoHR) today urged employers to let their staff work from home to ensure their health is not adversely affected by the prolonged haze season. Stating the matter was raised during the weekly Cabinet meeting yesterday, MoHR said the primary responsibility of employers is to ensure an employee’s safety and health […]

1MDB trial: Najib’s ex-aide denies $200,000 a gift from Jho Low

Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s former aide today denied receiving $200,000 in 2011 as a gift from businessperson Low Taek Jho, insisting instead that it was a loan from the latter. Najib’s former special officer Datuk Amhari Efendi Nazaruddin was testifying as the eighth prosecution witness in Najib’s corruption trial over 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB). Amhari […]

Indonesia

Millions may risk jail as Indonesia to outlaw sex outside marriage

Indonesia is poised to pass a new penal code that criminalises consensual sex outside marriage and introduces stiff penalties for insulting the president’s dignitya move rights groups criticised as an intrusive assault on basic freedoms. Indonesia is the world’s most populous Muslim majority country and has substantial Christian, Hindu and Buddhist minorities, but has seen […]

Indonesia to push back palm replanting target beyond 2025

Indonesia could take at least 12 years to complete a programme of replanting palm-growing areas after a farm ministry official said it was revising down annual targets, due to difficulties smallholders faced in proving they were eligible for the scheme. The government plan aimed to boost output on existing plots instead of adding new plantations, […]

Outcry at Indonesia draft criminal code that could see unmarried couples jailed

New draft bill, decades in the making, could also criminalise insulting the president and tightens abortion laws Indonesia is set to pass a new criminal code that could outlaw living together outside marriage, extramarital sex and insulting the president, among a raft of changes that rights groups have decried as disastrous. The Indonesian parliament has […]

Singapore

Singapore cracks world’s top 10 most-polluted cities as haze continues

Indonesian fires choking this part of the region have shot Singapore into the top 10 rankings of the world’s most polluted cities, according to live data from global air quality monitoring firm AirVisual this morning. Our haze situation remains firmly at “unhealthy” levels today, with the National Environment Agency’s (NEA) pollutant standard index (PSI) sitting […]

This less-known Singapore property play pays 51pct: Andy Mukherjee

Singapore is a major Asian refining hub, though it doesn’t have a drop of crude petroleum. Now, the tiny country is punching above its weight in data. The upshot for investors: An asset class that pays 51 percent in a world where earning even zero is increasingly a luxury. There’s a limit to how many […]

Migraines cost Singapore more than $1B in 2018: study

Migraines cost Singapore an estimated $1.04 billion last year, in terms of healthcare costs and productivity losses incurred by working adults in the Republic, an inaugural study on the condition has found. Findings from a joint survey by the Duke-National University of Singapore (NUS) and pharmaceutical company Novartis, released on Wednesday (18 September), revealed that […]

Thailand

Thailand culls 200 pigs amid heightened fears over African swine fever

Thailand culls 200 pigs amid heightened fears over African swine fever

Thailand has culled more than 200 pigs this week, authorities said on Wednesday, in the first such action amid heightened fears of a potential outbreak of African swine fever. Thailand has yet to report an outbreak of African swine fever among its pigs, though neighbouring Myanmar, Laos and Cambodia have all confirmed cases of the […]

Haze from Indonesian fires reaches southern Thailand

The southern Thai provinces of Yala and Songkhla have been hit by haze from Indonesia’s forest fires, with the PM2.5 air quality readings there exceeding the safety level of 50. According to the Pollution Control Department on Thursday (Sep 19), the PM2.5 level in Hai Yai, Songkhla was at 77 microgrammes (mcg) per cubic metre […]

Panda death in Thailand stirs suspicion in China

Chinese experts arrived in Thailand to investigate the death of a beloved giant panda, zoo officials said Thursday, as millions of netisens in China questioned the cause of the male bear’s sudden demise. Chuang Chuang, a resident of Chiang Mai Zoo since October 2003, died Monday aged 19 after years of living in an air-conditioned […]

Philippines

Government to release P580M for reintegration of ex-combatants

The Philippine government is set to release PhP580 million worth of social packages to 310 members of the Revolutionary Proletarian Army Alex Boncayao Brigade (RPA-ABB) who are set to undergo decommissioning this week. Captain Cenon Pancito III, chief of the 3rd Infantry Division Public Affairs Office (DPAO), said the Office of the Presidential Adviser on […]

PDEA probes online shop for selling ‘tooters’

Drug operatives discovered that some drug paraphernalia could be easily bought through online shops. On Thursday (September 19), agents from the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) seized over P600,000 worth of illegal drugs in two separate buy-bust operations in Pasig and Quezon City. Juan Carlos Reyes Antonio, a licensed pharmacist, was caught in possession of […]

Water-related activities temporarily banned in Marikina River

The Marikina City government on Tuesday (September 17) has temporarily banned all water-related activities in Marikina River. These include fishing and swimming, as risk of possible African Swine Fever (ASF) contamination is suspected stemming from pig carcasses that were dumped into the river over the weekend. Marikina Mayor Marcelino ‘Marcy’ Teodoro has also offered P200,000 […]

Japan

Fukushima executives cleared over worst nuclear disaster since Chernobyl

Three executives have been cleared of professional negligence in the only criminal trial stemming from the Fukushima nuclear disaster. The Tokyo District Court ruling means no one has been held criminally responsible for the meltdown at the Japanese nuclear power plant in 2011. Following the worst nuclear accident since Chernobyl, tens of thousands of residents […]

Japan and US drills simulate response to a seaborne invasion, reflecting anxieties about China

Japan and US drills simulate response to a seaborne invasion, reflecting anxieties about China

Japan and US drills simulate response to a seaborne invasion, reflecting anxieties about China Japanese and US military units have for the first time carried out joint manoeuvres using anti-shipping missiles, simulating a response to a seaborne invasion of Japanese territory. The exercises were conducted this week at the Oyanohara training facility in Kyushu, southern […]

Three executives acquitted of negligence over Fukushima nuclear disaster

Three former executives of the company that operated the Fukushima nuclear plant were acquitted by a court in Tokyo on Thursday of professional negligence resulting in death and injury. Tsunehisa Katsumata, a former chair of Tokyo Electric Power Co., was found not guilty of charges arising from the meltdown of three reactors at the company’s […]

Korea

Korea serial killer suspect identified after 33 years

South Korean police have identified a suspect in one of the country’s most notorious serial murder cases more than 30 years after the first of the 10 killings, they said Thursday. Between 1986 and 1991 more than two million police officers — a record for a single case — were mobilised to try and find […]

The cataclysm that created a Korean icon

The eruption of Mount Paektu in 946 left behind a spectacular caldera, with steep walls plunging down to the shores of Chonji crater lake — Heaven Lake in English North Korea has carried out six nuclear tests, but by far the greatest explosion ever seen on the peninsula took place more than 1,000 years ago […]

Police identify suspect in Korea’s infamous cold case ‘Hwaseong murders’

A man in his 50s, already in prison for raping and killing his sister-in-law, has been identified as the prime suspect in South Korea’s most infamous cold case, police said on Thursday. The serial rapes and murders, known as the “Hwaseong murders”, took place between 1986 and 1991, when 10 women were raped and killed […]

Hong Kong

HK’s Green Monday sees breakthrough for plant-based ‘pork’ in swine fever-hit China

Spiralling pork prices, caused by the African swine fever epidemic ravaging China’s pig herds, has created a crisis that could spur demand for plant-based meat products in the world’s second largest economy. With no known vaccine for the swine disease and a plunge in pork supply, purveyors of the growing plant-based protein meat trend have […]

China rebukes Washington after HK activists make Congress plea

China rebukes Washington after HK activists make Congress plea

Prominent activist Joshua Wong (L) and Cantopop star Denise Ho (C) testified before a congressional commission about the pro-democracy movement in Hong Kong Beijing Thursday accused Washington of “adding fuel to the fire” of Hong Kong unrest after leaders of the city’s pro-democracy movement appealed directly to US lawmakers to exert pressure on China. Activists […]

Court spares HK couple from prison for assaulting their adolescent daughters

A local court spared a middle-aged couple from jail on Thursday after they admitted slapping their daughter, gripping her neck and hitting another daughter on the head with an iron pipe. Instead, Principal Magistrate Peter Law Tak-chuen ordered each of the parents to serve a 12-month probation at West Kowloon Court. He declined to impose […]

Taiwan

Taiwan signs deal to purchase $3.7 billion worth of US agricultural products

US officials, more than 20 members of Congress attend signing ceremony A Taiwanese delegation signed an agreement with the US on Wednesday (September 18) to purchase billions of dollars worth of corn, soybeans, and beef from American farmers. The delegation, led by Council of Agriculture deputy minister Chen Junne-jih, sealed the $3.7 billion (NT$114 billion) […]

Tropical Storm Tapah poised to form just east of Taiwan

Tropical depression could become Tropical Storm Tapah, possibly affecting N. Taiwan by Fri. A tropical depression to the southeast of Taiwan is moving northward, liking bringing rain to northern and northeastern Taiwan and possibly intensifying into a tropical storm. The Central Weather Bureau (CWB) said that the outer bands of clouds from the tropical depression […]

UPDATE 1-Taiwan keeps policy rate steady, raises GDP growth forecast on better export outlook

Taiwan’s central bank left its policy rate unchanged on Thursday, as expected, and raised its 2019 growth forecast amid signs the island’s export outlook may be slowly improving despite the escalating US-China trade war. Meeting hours after the US Federal Reserve lowered interest rates, Taiwan’s central bank kept its benchmark discount rate at 1.375 percent, […]

Vietnam

Business Briefs 20 Sep 2019

* The State Capital Investment Corporation (SCIC) will hold an auction to offload its 32% stake totaling nearly 2.5 million shares in Lam Dong Pharmaceutical JSC (LDP) with the reserve price of VND28,100 per share SCIC expects to get VND70 billion from the auction, which is planned to be held on October 10. * Vietnam […]

Interest rates stay steady til year end: SBV official

With a positive macroeconomic background at the moment, interest rates will basically stay steady until the end of the year due to excessive liquidity and proper credit growth, according to an official from the State Bank of Vietnam (SBV). Central banks in many countries no longer pursuing tight monetary policies has eased the pressure on […]

Binh Duong continues to host Horasis Asia Meeting

The southern province of Binh Duong will be hosting the Horasis Asia Meeting again this year, the provincial People’s Committee announced on September 18. The meeting is slated for November 24-26 and expected to attract about 400 high-ranking guests from 60 countries and territories worldwide and 350 Vietnamese delegates. Following the success of the Horasis […]