S Korea nominates WTO head
Seoul on Friday nominated South Korean Minster for Trade Bark Taeho to lead the WTO, making him the eighth candidate to be put forward for the top job. Bark’s candidacy was submitted three days before nominations close and as Pascal Lamy, the global trade body’s current director general, prepares to step down on Aug. 31. Although Lamy has said his successor should be chosen on the basis of competence alone, some trade diplomats say it is the turn of a developing country to hold the job. Bark is the second candidate from a rich country and the third from the Asia-Pacific to apply. More could be put forward before the deadline of midnight on Monday.
Court rules against Apple
A court has ordered Apple Inc to pay 1.03 million yuan (US$165,000) to eight Chinese writers and two companies who say unlicensed copies of their work were distributed through Apple’s online store. The Beijing No. 2 Intermediate People’s Court ruled on Thursday that Apple violated the writers’ copyrights by allowing applications containing their work to be distributed through its App Store, according to an official who answered the phone at the court and said he was the judge in the case. He refused to give his name, as is common among Chinese officials. The award was less than the 12 million yuan sought by the authors.
YouTube block to be lifted
Authorities were expected to unblock access to the popular video sharing Web site YouTube yesterday after taking measures to filter blasphemous material and pornography, a Cabinet minister said. Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf in September ordered the blocking of YouTube after the US-based Web site refused to heed the government’s call to remove a controversial anti-Islam video. Interior Minister Rehman Malik said on Twitter the decision to allow access was due to huge public demand, and that the telecoms regulator would install a firewall to maintain a block on unseemly content.
Minister keeps growth target
Finance Minister Pierre Moscovici said he is maintaining an economic growth target of 0.8 percent for next year even after the economy grew less than initially reported in the third quarter. Reaching that goal will depend in part on how economic actors react to changes in banking regulation and on other efforts to try to halt the crisis in the euro zone, as well as on growth in the US, Moscovici said. GDP rose 0.1 percent in the third quarter, half the pace estimated on Nov. 15, statistics institute Insee said on Friday.
Netflix CEO’s fee doubled
Netflix Inc, the world’s largest video-subscription service, doubled the annual compensation of chairman and chief executive officer Reed Hastings to US$4 million. Hastings, 52, will receive US$2 million in salary next year, along with US$2 million in stock options, according to a regulatory filing today by the Los Gatos, California-based company. The executive received a US$500,000 salary this year and US$1.5 million in option allowances, a reduction in stock compensation from last year.