Thu, Nov 22, 2007 - Page 11 News List

Business Briefs

STAFF WRITER, WITH AGENCIES

China investment hits high

Taiwan's investment in China in the first 10 months of this year amounted to US$7.66 billion, setting a new high, according to the latest tallies released by the Investment Commission under the Ministry of Economic Affairs on Tuesday.

The figure represents an increase of 30.11 percent over the same period last year, and surpasses the US$7.64 billion invested in China for the entire last year.

Direct overseas Chinese and foreign investments in Taiwan in the first 10 months totaled US$12.93 billion, up 15.17 percent from the same period last year.

On outbound investment, Taiwan businesses reported investments of US$4.68 billion in the Jan. to Oct. period, an increase of 63.82 percent over the same period last year.

iPhone to come unattached

German telecommunications operator Deutsche Telekom said yesterday following a court ruling that it would sell Apple's mobile iPhone without forcing customers to subscribe to a mobile telephone service.

But Deutsche Telekom will charge 999 euros (US$1,480) for the hot-selling multimedia item instead of the 399 euros charged when buyers also take a Deutsche Telekom subscription, a statement said.

The German telecoms operator will offer to unblock iPHones that have already been bought with a subscription, it added, and the conditions would apply "until the end of the judicial procedure" currently in progress.

The announcement came after a court in northern Hamburg granted an injunction to British telecom operator Vodafone, which had challenged an exclusive distribution agreement between Apple and Deutsche Telekom's mobile unit T-Mobile.

German press reports had said that T-Mobile agreed to pay Apple between 10 and 30 percent of the operator's iPhone sales in order to seal the German distribution deal.

Exploration rights granted

Two Chinese mining companies have won the right to explore an Afghan copper mine, which is possibly the world's largest, the commerce ministry said yesterday.

China Metallurgical Group Corp (MCC, 中國冶金科工集團), a state-owned metal producer and contractor, and Jiangxi Copper Co (江西銅業) will jointly develop the Aynak mine east of Kabul, said a statement on the ministry's Web site.

The deposit of copper in the mine was estimated at 11.3 million tonnes, the statement said.

MCC will invest about US$3 billion in the project, which includes building a power station to run power the mine, the Financial Times report has reported.

"This is the biggest investment in Afghanistan's history and 10,000 people will be employed to work there," the London-based newspaper quoted Afghan mines minister Ibrahim Adel as saying.

Japan's trade surplus rises

Japan's trade surplus rose 66.1 percent in October from a year ago as exports recorded an all-time high value in yen, the Finance Ministry said yesterday.

The surplus grew to ?1.019 trillion (US$9.27 billion), marking the third consecutive monthly increase, the ministry said.

Exports remained robust during the period despite a stronger yen, which makes Japanese products more expensive abroad.

Overall exports gained 13.9 percent to a record ?7.516 trillion (US$68.43 billion) despite a decline in exports to the US.

Shipments to China and other Asian nations rose to records driven by automobiles, semiconductors and telecommunication devices.

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