• S. Korea, US closely watching N. Korean moves on SLBMs, new submarine: JCS

    S. Korea, US closely watching N. Korean moves on SLBMs, new submarine: JCS

    South Korea is closely monitoring North Korea’s military moves in coordination with the United States, the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said Monday, amid signs of activity at the North’s main shipyard used to develop submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBMs). According to 38 North, commercial satellite imagery of the North’s Sinpo Shipyard indicates that a missile […]

    13-Apr-2021 Intellasia | Koreaherald | 5:02 AM
  • Future ties at stake as Korean PM visits Iran

    Future ties at stake as Korean PM visits Iran

    The future of diplomatic and financial relations between Iran and South Korea is at stake as prime minister Chung Sye-kyun visits Tehran for three days of talks. South Korea has for years blocked at least $7bn of Iranian money in its banks as it fears falling afoul of harsh economic sanctions the United States started […]

    13-Apr-2021 Intellasia | Aljazeera | 5:02 AM
  • Top US diplomat criticises China, says ‘need to get to the bottom’ of COVID-19 origin

    Top US diplomat criticises China, says ‘need to get to the bottom’ of COVID-19 origin

    China’s failure to provide access to global health experts made the COVID-19 pandemic worse than it had to be, US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said on Sunday, and it was important to “get to the bottom” of the origin of the novel coronavirus. The top US diplomat’s sharp words underscored criticism from other members […]

    13-Apr-2021 Intellasia | Reuters | 5:02 AM
  • Burma activists call for New Year defiance; Suu Kyi due for video hearing

    Burma activists call for New Year defiance; Suu Kyi due for video hearing

    Myanmar’s detained government leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, asked a court on Monday to be allowed to meet her lawyers in person as she appeared at a hearing via video link to face charges brought by the military junta that could see her jailed for years. As the champion of decades of struggle against military […]

    13-Apr-2021 Intellasia | Reuters | 5:02 AM
  • Philippines, US to begin 2-week joint military drill on Monday

    Philippines, US to begin 2-week joint military drill on Monday

    Philippine and US soldiers will conduct a two-week joint military exercise from Monday, resuming the annual training event after last year’s cancellation due to the pandemic, the Philippine military chief said on Sunday. The announcement came after the two countries’ defence secretaries held a phone call to discuss the drills, the situation in the South […]

    13-Apr-2021 Intellasia | Reuters | 5:02 AM
  • Secretary of state Blinken hits out at China over Taiwan and Covid

    Secretary of state Blinken hits out at China over Taiwan and Covid

    Joe Biden’s secretary of state, Antony Blinken, said on Sunday the US is concerned about China’s aggressive actions against Taiwan and warned it would be a “serious mistake” for anyone to try to change the status quo in the western Pacific by force. “What we’ve seen, and what is of real concern to us, is […]

    13-Apr-2021 Intellasia | TheGuardian | 5:02 AM
  • Trudeau pushing HFX to drop Taiwan award to avoid angering China

    Trudeau pushing HFX to drop Taiwan award to avoid angering China

    Canada’s government under prime minister Justin Trudeau is reportedly threatening to withdraw government funding for the Halifax International Security Forum (HFX), if it goes through with its plans to present an award to Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen. According to multiple sources cited by Politico, HFX had planned to present its John McCain Prize for Leadership […]

    13-Apr-2021 Intellasia | TaiwanNews | 5:02 AM
  • US and China deploy aircraft carriers in South China Sea as tensions simmer

    US and China deploy aircraft carriers in South China Sea as tensions simmer

    Military activity in the South China Sea spiked over the weekend as a Chinese aircraft carrier entered the region and a US Navy expeditionary strike group wrapped up exercises. Meanwhile, the US and Philippines were preparing for joint drills as the US secretary of defense proposed ways to deepen military cooperation between Washington and Manila […]

    13-Apr-2021 Intellasia | CNN | 5:02 AM
  • Blinken criticises China’s failure to ‘provide real transparency’ earlier in pandemic

    Blinken criticises China’s failure to ‘provide real transparency’ earlier in pandemic

    Secretary of State Antony Blinken criticised China Sunday for not disclosing information on Covid-19 and its aggression in Taiwan and said that the US has “real concerns” about Russia’s actions on the Ukraine border. “I think China knows that in the early stages of Covid, it didn’t do what it needed to do, which was […]

    13-Apr-2021 Intellasia | CNN | 5:02 AM
  • Top official admits Chinese vaccines have low effectiveness

    Top official admits Chinese vaccines have low effectiveness

    In a rare admission of the weakness of Chinese coronavirus vaccines, the country’s top disease control official says their effectiveness is low and the government is considering mixing them to get a boost. Chinese vaccines “don’t have very high protection rates,” said the director of the China Centers for Disease Control, Gao Fu, at a […]

    13-Apr-2021 Intellasia | AP | 5:02 AM
  • Japan defense chief and top US commander in Pacific vow to deepen security ties

    Japan defense chief and top US commander in Pacific vow to deepen security ties

    Defense minister Nobuo Kishi and Adm. Philip Davidson, the outgoing commander of the US Indo-Pacific Command, agreed Monday to deepen security ties to counter China’s growing maritime assertiveness in the East and South China seas. Reaffirming the importance of maintaining peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait, Davidson was quoted by the Defense Ministry as […]

    13-Apr-2021 Intellasia | JapanTimes | 5:02 AM
  • Blinken warns of China’s ‘increasingly aggressive actions’ against Taiwan

    Blinken warns of China’s ‘increasingly aggressive actions’ against Taiwan

    US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Sunday the United States is concerned about China’s aggressive actions against Taiwan and warned it would be a “serious mistake” for anyone to try to change the status quo in the Western Pacific by force. “What we’ve seen, and what is of real concern to us, is […]

    12-Apr-2021 Intellasia | Reuters | 1:21 PM

Society

Stalled at first jab: Vaccine shortages hit poor countries

As many as 60 countries, including some of the world’s poorest, might be stalled at the first shots of their coronavirus vaccinations because nearly all deliveries through the global programme intended to help them are blocked until as late as June. COVAX, the global initiative to provide vaccines to countries lacking the clout to negotiate […]

Countries worldwide hit new records for virus cases, deaths

Nations around the world set new records Thursday (April 8) for COVID-19 deaths and new coronavirus infections, and the disease surged even in some countries that have kept the virus in check. In the United States, Michigan has averaged more than 7,000 new cases a day. Brazil this week became just the third country, after […]

‘Being Asian here is terrifying’: Korean gamer describes racism in US

A South Korean professional video gamer has described the “unspeakable” racism he has suffered while based in Texas in a clip that has gone viral on social media, sparking condemnation of the abuse. The United States has seen a surge in anti-Asian violence in the past year, which activists have blamed on former President Donald […]

Health

Britain advises alternative to Oxford/AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine for under-30s

Britain should give an alternative to Oxford/AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine to under 30s where possible due to a “vanishingly” rare side effect of blood clots in the brain, Britain’s vaccine advisory committee said on Wednesday. Officials said the benefits of the shot continued to outweigh its risks for the vast majority, after safety concerns spurred over […]

US begins study on allergic reaction risk in Moderna, Pfiser vaccines

The US National Institutes of Health said on Wednesday it had begun a mid-stage study to determine the risk of allergic reactions to COVID-19 vaccines made by Moderna Inc and Pfiser Inc. Several allergic reaction incidents, including serious episodes, known as anaphylaxis, have been reported in the US after vaccinations of Pfiser/BioNTech and Moderna shots. […]

AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine trial in children paused as clot link probed

A British trial of the AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine on children has been paused, Oxford University said Tuesday, as global regulators rush to assess its possible link to rare blood clots in adults. The university, which helped develop the embattled vaccine, said in a statement that there were “no safety concerns” in the trial, but acknowledged […]

FinanceAsia

Lizhi Inc. Announces Closing Of $30.0 Million Registered Direct Offering

GUANGZHOU, China, April 14, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — LIZHI INC. ("LIZHI" or the "Company") (NASDAQ: LIZI), a leading online UGC audio community and interactive audio entertainment platform in China, tod…

Mercurity Fintech Holding Inc. Announces US$10 Million Private Placement

BEIJING, April 14, 2021 /PRNewswire/ – Mercurity Fintech Holding Inc. ("MFH" or the "Company") (Nasdaq: MFH), today announced that three investors, namely Kaiyu Chen, Baibang Technology Co., Ltd. an…

CGTN: A City on the Rebound: How Hong Kong Can Move Forward

CGTN: A City on the Rebound: How Hong Kong Can Move Forward

BEIJING–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The past two years have been tough on the world, not just due to the pandemic but also the geopolitical volatility that has roiled many countries and regions. In East Asia, the financial hub of Hong Kong has experienced its fa…

Regional

No mood to celebrate: Myanmar to snub water fight festival

Instead of the usual water pistols, splashing and jubilant crowds during Myanmar’s New Year festival of Thingyan, this year’s holiday will see real guns, blood on the streets and grief over a democracy robbed. For a second year running, Myanmar’s traditional Buddhist holiday period, which runs from Tuesday to Friday this week, has been disrupted. […]

WHO warns pandemic at ‘critical point’ as South Asia cases surge

The Covid-19 pandemic has entered a critical phase as infections exponentially increase despite widespread measures aimed at stopping them, the WHO warned Monday, with record case numbers in South Asia triggering tough new restrictions. However Britons enjoyed the freedoms of a pint and a haircut for the first time in months as curbs eased, illustrating […]

Burma’s Suu Kyi asks court to let her meet lawyers; activists urge New Year defiance

Myanmar’s detained government leader Aung San Suu Kyi asked a court on Monday to be allowed to meet her lawyers in person when she appeared at a hearing via video link to face charges brought by the military junta that could see her jailed for years. As Suu Kyi appeared, her supporters called for people […]

China

After sanctions, Huawei turning to businesses less reliant on high-end US tech

Chinese telecoms equipment maker Huawei Technologies is making business resilience its top priority with a push to develop its software capabilities as it seeks to overcome US restrictions that have devastated its smartphone business. Huawei was put on an export blacklist by former US President Donald Trump in 2019 and barred from accessing critical technology […]

HSBC and Huawei CFO reach agreement on document publication linked to extradition case

HSBC and Huawei Technologies’ Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou have reached an agreement in a dispute about the publication of documents relating to US fraud allegations against her, their lawyers told a Hong Kong court. The judge, Linda Chan, made court orders along the lines of the agreement, she said on Monday. The orders were, […]

China extends crackdown on Jack Ma’s empire with enforced revamp of Ant Group

China has imposed a sweeping restructuring on Jack Ma’s Ant Group, the fintech conglomerate whose record $37 billion IPO was derailed by regulators in November, underscoring Beijing’s determination to rein in its internet giants. The overhaul, in the works for several months, includes Ant turning itself into a financial holding firm, a move expected to […]

Malaysia

MOF dismisses claims MSSB sold shares, says still major shareholder involved in Exchange 106 in TRX

The Ministry of Finance (MoF) today clarified that MKD Signature Sdn Bhd (MSSB), a company owned by minister of Finance (Incorporated) [MoF (Inc)] is still the major shareholder of Mulia Property Development Sdn Bhd (MPDSB). “Currently, MSSB remains as the major shareholder of MPDSB and there has not been any share sale agreement with any […]

Anwar calls Azmin ‘video expert’ after he ‘confirms’ leaked recording

Anwar Ibrahim appears to chide Azmin Ali over the latter’s alleged sex tape after the senior minister claimed the audio recording of the PKR president and his Umno counterpart Ahmad Zahid Hamidi was genuine. Yesterday, Azmin said he was “confident” that a leaked clip depicting a conversation between the two was authentic. A longtime PKR […]

Johor BN begins discussions on seat distribution for GE15, says chair

Johor Barisan Nasional (BN) has begun discussions on the distribution of seats to contest in the upcoming 15th general Election (GE15) between its component parties, said Johor BN chair Datuk Hasni Mohammad. Hasni said Johor BN had decided that Umno, MCA and MIC would contest in the election. “I have started the discussions with the […]

Indonesia

Cockpit voice recorder from crashed Indonesian jet downloaded successfully-investigator

The cockpit voice recorder (CVR) from a crashed Sriwijaya Air jet has been downloaded successfully and includes the last minutes of the flight that ended with 62 people dead, an official at Indonesia’s air accident investigator said on Monday. The contents of the recording from the 26-year old Boeing Co 737-500 that crashed shortly after […]

Indonesian president orders Java rescue efforts after quake kills 8

Indonesian President Joko Widodo on Sunday ordered swift rescue and relief efforts after eight people died in an earthquake that hit off southern Java island. Three others were badly injured in Saturday’s magnitude-5.9 quake and more than 1,180 buildings were damaged, most of them slightly, the disaster agency BNPB said. Some houses were flattened, images […]

Death toll from tropical cyclone Seroja rises to 177 in Indonesia

The death toll from tropical cyclone Seroja in Indonesia’s East Nusa Tenggara province rose to 177, with 45 other people still missing and several villages remaining isolated as land routes were cut off due to rock slides, a local official said on Sunday. “The villages are still isolated including those in Kupang district. Tomorrow we […]

Singapore

Singapore faces biggest-ever succession planning challenge

The rumblings started shortly after Singapore’s ruling party won 89% of seats in last year’s election. What would be hailed as a fantastic outcome in most places amounted to the worst parliamentary performance ever for the People’s Action Party, which has been in power since the country’s independence in 1965, one of the longest uninterrupted […]

Schools in Singapore continue to reap benefits of remote learning

Late last month, Secondary 2 students from Riverside Secondary School were one of the first nationwide to receive their personal learning devices. The excitement of getting a brand new tablet to tinker with was palpable. On its Facebook page, the school, which opted for the iPad, described the experience as “unbox(ing) the wonders to an […]

SGUnited traineeship and attachment schemes benefit 9,500 job seekers

Some 9,500 job seekers have participated in two SGUnited schemes that were launched last year to tackle weakened hiring demand caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. Four in five of those taking part in the SGUnited Traineeships and SGUnited Mid-Career Pathways programmes are recent graduates, while the rest are mid-career workers. As of end-February, about 200 […]

Thailand

Expert warns of jabs’ limits

An expert is warning that the African and Brazilian variants of the Covid-19 virus must be prevented from spreading in the country, as several reports suggest that currently available vaccines aren’t fully effective against the mutated strains of the coronavirus. The head of Chulalongkorn University’s Centre of Excellence in Clinical Virology, Yong Poovorawan, said the […]

Govt mulls visa rule overhaul for expats, tourists, investors

The government could revamp immigration rules this year to make it easier for expats and long-term tourists to stay in the country, part of a strategy to boost investment and tourism revenue once the pandemic eases. The proposed changes could mean foreigners would no longer have to file 90-day reports of their whereaboutsa deeply deeply […]

Covid hotspot club managers in Bangkok jailed 2 months

The managers of Krystal Club and Emerald Club in Bangkok’s Thong Lor area, where a new wave of Covid-19 in the country allegedly began, have been each sentenced to two months in jail without suspension, Metropolitan Police Sub-division 5 commander Pol Maj Gen Sopon Sarapat revealed on Sunday. He said the Bangkok South Kwaeng Court […]

Philippines

Philippines, US launch military drills amid South China Sea tensions

Philippine and US soldiers started two weeks of military exercises on Monday against a backdrop of rising tensions in the South China Sea, though the drills were reduced in scale due to the coronavirus pandemic. The countries are proceeding with the exercises, which were postponed last year due to the pandemic, after Manila recently accused […]

Optimism wanes on Philippine recovery

The country’s road to economic recovery is now getting less and less bright amid the sustained surge in COVID-19 cases, even as the government has reimposed strict lockdown measures, a global data analytics firm said. In its weekly economic preview, IHS Markit said it now expects lower gross domestic product (GDP) growth this year of […]

Philippines to Burma: Adhere to Asean Human Rights Declaration

The Philippines has called on Myanmar to adhere to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) Human Rights Declaration amid the rapidly deteriorating situation in the Southeast Asian nation. During the 33rd meeting of the Asean Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights held recently through a video conference, ICHR Philippine Representative Jaime Victor Ledda joined representatives […]

Japan

Japan’s emperor, empress send condolences over death of Prince Philip

Japan’s emperor, empress send condolences over death of Prince Philip

Japan’s imperial couple sent messages of condolence to Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II following the death of her husband Prince Philip last week, the Imperial Household Agency said Monday. Emperor Naruhito paid tribute to Prince Philip in remembering how kind he was to him while he was studying at the University of Oxford for two years […]

Fukushima: Japan announces it will dump contaminated water into sea

Japan is to release more than 1m tonnes of contaminated water from the wrecked Fukushima nuclear power plant into the sea, the government has said, a decision that is likely to anger neighbouring countries and local fishers. Official confirmation of the move, which came more than a decade after the nuclear disaster, will also deal […]

Japan says to release contaminated Fukushima water into sea

Japan plans to release into the sea more than 1 million tonnes of contaminated water from the destroyed Fukushima nuclear station, the government said on Tuesday, a decision that is likely to anger neighbours such as South Korea. The move, more than a decade after the nuclear disaster, will deal another blow to the fishing […]

Korea

Korea to begin producing Novavax COVID-19 vaccine as early as June

South Korea said on Monday it plans to begin local production of Novavax Inc’s COVID-19 vaccine as early as June, while five domestic companies aim to start late stage clinical trials of their own shots in the second half of this year. The announcements came after President Moon Jae-in hosted a special meeting on anti-virus […]

Korean PM arrives in Iran to help try to revive nuclear deal

South Korean prime minister Chung Sye-kyun arrived in Iran on Sunday to help try to restore a 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and world powers and free up $7 billion in Iranian funds trapped in South Korea, Seoul officials said. Chung is the first South Korean prime minister to visit Iran in 44 years amid […]

S. Korea willing to help Iran advance dialogue for restoring nuclear deal: PM

South Korea’s prime minister said Monday his country is willing to provide “sideline” support for Iran to advance “productive” dialogue with partners in restoring the 2015 Iran nuclear deal. Chung Sye-kyun made the remarks during a joint press conference Sunday (local time) with Iran’s First vice President Eshaq Jahangiri in Tehran following their 90-minute talks. […]

Hong Kong

HSBC and Huawei CFO reach agreement on document publication linked to extradition case

HSBC and Huawei Technologies’ Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou have reached an agreement in a dispute about the publication of documents relating to US fraud allegations against her, their lawyers told a Hong Kong court. The judge, Linda Chan, made court orders along the lines of the agreement, she said on Monday. The orders were, […]

‘Forced confession’ victims urge Chinese TV channels ban

Thirteen people who describe themselves as “victims of forced confessions broadcast on Chinese television” are urging European satellite operator Eutelsat to reconsider carrying Chinese channels CGTN and CCTV4. The letter published by human rights watchdog Safeguard Defenders details a list of violations that the signatories say China is guilty of using to extort confessions from […]

HK elections: can blank votes be outlawed and will Beijing be embarrassed by low turnout?

Three elections coming up in Hong Kong will play out in a dramatically reshaped political landscape following Beijing’s sweeping overhaul of the city’s electoral system, and there have already been calls for voters to protest by casting blank ballots. So much will be different, from an expanded Legislative Council to an enlarged Election Committee with […]

Taiwan

Secretary of state Blinken hits out at China over Taiwan and Covid

Secretary of state Blinken hits out at China over Taiwan and Covid

Joe Biden’s secretary of state, Antony Blinken, said on Sunday the US is concerned about China’s aggressive actions against Taiwan and warned it would be a “serious mistake” for anyone to try to change the status quo in the western Pacific by force. “What we’ve seen, and what is of real concern to us, is […]

Taiwan-made enterovirus vaccine clears trial, could hit market soon

Taiwan-based Medigen Vaccine Biologics Corp. (MVC) on Sunday announced positive trial results for its enterovirus 71 (EV71) virus vaccine and expressed hope the vaccine could hit the market in Taiwan next year. At a press event, MVC spokesman Leo Lee said the results of the Phase III clinical trial of the EV71 vaccine, released publicly […]

Taiwan Army makes budget preparations for hangar construction at Taitung’s Fengnian Airport

The Army is moving forward with budget preparations for its plan to station some of its AH-64E Apache helicopters at Taitung’s Fengnian Airport for training purposes, despite opposition from local residents. According to a budget report, the Army Aviation and Special Forces Command intends to move some Apache helicopters to the new location to meet […]

Vietnam

Poor logistics hinder Mekong Delta agri exports

A lack of deep-water ports and warehousing has seen transport costs surge and Mekong Delta agriculture product competitivity drop, experts have said. “Logistic costs accounts for 30 percent of product price, which is an unreasonably high proportion. In Thailand the figure is 12.5 percent, and the average global figure, 14 percent. This hinders Mekong Delta […]

HCM City bourse temporarily suspends listing of new stocks

The Ho Chi Minh Stock Exchange has suspended new listings from April 8 to fix its overloaded trading system. All approved listings will temporarily go to the Hanoi Stock Exchange and return to HoSE after the system is upgraded. In recent months, with investors flocking to trade in humongous numbers, the 20-year-old system used by […]

Central city to develop an international finance centre

The central city’s people’s committee and the Import-Export Pan Pacific Group (IPPG) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the development of an international and regional finance centre to attract investors in the future. Director of the city’s Investment Promotion Agency (IPA), Huynh Thi Lien Phuong said the MoU, which was signed late last […]