Top steel firms audited
The National Audit Office said it is auditing the country’s top three steel companies to ensure they have implemented a two-year-old steel industry plan, Xinhua news agency reported. The three are Baosteel Group Corp (寶鋼集團), Wuhan Iron and Steel (Group) Corp (武漢鋼鐵集團) and Angang Steel Co (鞍山鋼鐵集團), Xinhua said. All three rank among the world’s top 10 steel producers in terms of output, the report said. The audit office started on-site audits of the three firms in June and plans to complete them “soon,” Xinhua said.
Teva acquisition approved
Regulators said they would give Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, the world’s biggest generic drug maker, a conditional green light for its US$6.8 billion acquisition of competitor Cephalon. The Federal Trade Commission said on Friday it would allow the deal, which it had feared could reduce competition in the multi-billion-dollar market, if Teva sells the rights to two generic drugs ahead of the company’s Friday target date for the transaction. The generic treatments — a cancer pain compound and a muscle relaxant — have combined domestic sales of about US$300 million a year. Israel-based Teva first announced in May its intent to acquire Pennsylvania-based Cephalon for US$6.8 billion.
Inflation ‘not worrying’
Inflation levels are not a concern and will continue to decline, central bank Governor Muhammad al-Jasser said on Saturday. “Inflation levels are not worrying. Inflation has become stable since the beginning of the year between about 4.6 and 4.9 [percent] ... I expect it to continue its decline,” al-Jasser told reporters on the sidelines of a conference in Riyadh. Al-Jasser also said that lending levels had risen by more than 9 percent this year. “In reality, lending has risen by more than 9 percent this year ... an excellent level,” he said.
Gibson backs conservation
Gibson Guitar chief executive Henry Juszkiewicz said he strongly backed conservation as well as US federal enforcement of laws meant to protect the tropical hardwoods the firm uses to make instruments. Gibson is facing allegations that it uses wood from India that is not finished by Indian workers — a potential violation of the Lacey Act. Juszkiewicz told reporters on Saturday, after a Tea Party-sponsored, pro-Gibson rally, that he supports the intent of the act. However, he called the requirement for Indian workers to finish the wood a “misuse of environmental law.” Federal agents raided Gibson factories in Nashville and Memphis, Tennessee, in August, seizing more than 10,000 fingerboards from imported Indian rosewood.
Georgia blocks WTO entry
Talks between Georgia and Russia over the latter’s bid to join the WTO ended without agreement on Saturday, and Georgia said it would block accession unless Moscow’s position changes. The failure to resolve a dispute rooted in a 2008 war between the two countries undermines Russia’s chances of joining the WTO this year, a target set by Moscow and the US, and could worsen relations with the West. Because the WTO, a 153-nation trade rules body, makes decisions by consensus, Georgia has an effective veto over membership for its much larger neighbor.
‘BIG LOSS’: This year might see the last generation of Huawei’s Kirin chips, as their production would stop next month because they are made using US technology Chinese tech giant Huawei Technologies Co (華為) is running out of processor chips to make smartphones due to US sanctions and would be forced to stop production of its own most advanced chips, a company executive has said, in a sign of growing damage to Huawei’s business from US pressure. Huawei, one of the biggest producers of smartphones and network equipment, is at the center of US-Chinese tension over technology and security. Washington last year cut off Huawei’s access to US components and technology, and those penalties were tightened in May, when the White House barred vendors worldwide from using US
’WHITE BOX’: The open platform would give local firms access to Cisco’s cloud-based mobile network to develop 5G telecom equipment and tap into the global market The Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) yesterday introduced a new 5G “open lab” in collaboration with US-based information technology and networking giant Cisco Systems Inc to address the rapidly growing “white box” 5G networking equipment market. The open lab will be a platform where Taiwanese manufacturers can access Cisco’s cloud-based mobile network to develop their own 5G telecom equipment, such as small-cell base stations, network switches, modems and Internet of things (IoT) devices, a ministry statement said. The open platform would allow Taiwanese manufacturers to tap into the lucrative 5G telecom equipment market, which was previously monopolized by Nokia Oyj, Ericsson AB
CORPORATE SCANDAL: Cathay Life has invested NT$13.3 billion in Bank Mayapada since 2015, but the latest loss of NT$8.8 billion has completely written off its investment Cathay Life Insurance Co (國泰人壽) yesterday said it would recognize an investment loss of NT$8.8 billion (US$298.1 million) in Indonesia’s Bank Mayapada Internasional Tbk PT due to concerns about the lender’s operations amid a corporate scandal. The company said it would revise its earnings result for June, from a net profit of NT$6.52 billion to a net loss of NT$520 million, its first monthly loss over the past 17 months. After booking an investment loss of NT$5.2 billion in Bank Mayapada earlier this year, Cathay Life has so far recognized total investment losses of NT$14 billion in the lender, executive vice president
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC, 台積電) yesterday reported that revenue last month expanded 25 percent annually, but fell 12.8 percent month-on-month to NT$105.96 billion (US$3.59 billion). In the first seven months of this year, the chipmaker’s revenue surged 33.6 percent to NT$727.26 billion, compared with NT$544.46 billion a year earlier. TSMC has said it aims to grow its revenue by more than 20 percent this year. The company has since May 15 stopped taking new orders from Huawei Technologies Co (華為), its second-biggest customer after Apple Inc, due to the US’ restrictions on exports containing US technologies. TSMC has no plans to