Sun, Oct 08, 2006 - Page 11 News List

World Business Quick Take


■ Food

Study on chickens unveiled

Tyson Foods Inc, the world's largest meat producer, says using gas in killing chickens does not seem to be more humane than electrocuting them. But the company is seeking further study before changing its practice. Tyson recently completed a two-year study on using "controlled atmosphere stunning" to knock chickens out before they are slaughtered. The company now uses "electrical stunning" when preparing to slaughter the birds. Tyson processes 43 million chickens a week. "While our research has concluded controlled atmosphere stunning may be an acceptable alternative, we have not currently found it to be more humane than conventional electrical stunning," Bill Lovette, senior group vice president of Poultry and Prepared Foods for Tyson Foods, said in a statement.

■ Music

Tower Records sold

Tower Records, the 46-year-old music retailer that sought bankruptcy protection in August, was sold to a group led by liquidator Great American Corp for US$134.3 million. Liquidation sales will begin this weekend at Tower's 89 stores in 20 states and all of them will probably close by the end of the year, Tom Pabst, chief administrative officer for Los Angeles-based Great American, said on Friday. Tower's 3,000 employees will lose their jobs, he said. Tower's parent, closely held MTS Inc, sought protection in August after competition from online retailers, Internet downloads and discounters caused same-store sales to slump 9 percent in a year.

■ Oil

Caracas to aid Vietnam

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said his country planned to help build an oil refinery in Vietnam and could use funds earned in his government's recent sale of its share in a Texas refinery. Chavez announced the plan on Friday night in a speech as Venezuela signed 13 accords with visiting officials from Vietnam to cooperate in areas from mining to electrical projects. He said Venezuela could use the proceeds from the August sale of its minority share in the Lyondell-Citgo refinery in Texas. The deal was valued at some US$2.1 billion.

■ Finance

Thai banker enters Cabinet

Bank of Thailand Governor Pridiyathorn Devakula said he would take two positions in the nation's new interim Cabinet and be responsible for the government's economic policies. Pridiyathorn yesterday told reporters he would head the economic team, without specifying whether he will run finance, commerce or other ministries. Thailand's economy will grow faster next year than this year as political stability, higher government spending and lower oil prices boost confidence, Pridiyathorn said on Oct. 3.

■ Investment

Indian FDI nearly doubles

India's booming economy drew a record US$2.9 billion in foreign direct investment (FDI) in the first four months of the fiscal year, nearly double last year's amount, a report said yesterday. "FDI inflows in April-July 2006-2007 increased by 92 percent to US$2.9 billion from US$1.5 billion in the same period of the last fiscal year," Commerce Minister Kamal Nath said, according to the Press Trust of India. "India is set to receive US$12 billion this year as against US$8.3 billion in 2005-2006," Nath said in New Delhi. India's economy expanded by 8.9 percent in the first quarter to June after growing by 8.4 percent in the financial year ended March 31.

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