DPJ urges Amari for clarity
The opposition Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) plans to urge embattled Minister of State for Economy and Fiscal Policy Akira Amari to clarify graft allegations made against him in a tabloid magazine. A key architect of the government’s “Abenomics” policies, Amari and his secretary have been accused by the weekly Shukan Bunshun magazine of taking money from an unidentified construction company in an alleged violation of a political funding law. “I want him to show good faith and clear up the graft allegations,” party vice secretary-general Tetsuro Fukuyama said on an NHK TV program yesterday. The party wants to hear from Amari today before the start of the House of Representatives’ plenary session, which is scheduled to start tomorrow, Fukuyama said. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has indicated he wants Amari to continue fulfilling his duties, NHK reported on its Web site.
Central bank backs Lagarde
The Monetary Authority of Singapore yesterday said it supported the nomination of IMF managing director Christine Lagarde for a second term. Lagarde launched her campaign for her second term on Friday last week with ringing endorsements from a host of major economies that looked past a court case against her in her native France. Her first term ends on July 4 and the IMF has said it wants to wrap up the selection process by March 3. “Singapore supports Ms Lagarde serving a second term, and I am confident she will continue to lead the IMF with conviction and in an inclusive way,” Monetary Authority of Singapore Chairman Tharman Shanmugaratnam said in a statement.
Four miners killed in fire
Four miners have died in an underground fire in a platinum mine near Johannesburg, the Impala group said in a statement. The fire broke out on Friday last week at a mine near Rustenburg, about 120km from Johannesburg, the owners said in a statement. The National Union of Mineworkers, the main union body representing the sector, yesterday said it was “deeply concerned about these fatalities happening at Impala Platinum.” South Africa possesses rich mineral reserves and has several gold, platinum, diamond and coal pits, but has been dogged by several mining accidents in the recent past.
Talks with EU progressing
Minister of Economy and Finances Pier Carlo Padoan on Saturday said that the government is conducting a “very good conversation” with the European Commission on a plan to help banks offload bad debt, as additional national measures to ease the sale of non-performing loans are to be introduced this week. Talks with the commission “will not be stalled, and in any case we already have in place measures that will help,” Padoan said at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. Padoan later told a news conference he would be meeting with EU Commissioner for Competition Margrethe Vestager tomorrow. The government and the commission are discussing a plan to allow buyers of banks’ bad loans to purchase a state guarantee on them to reduce the price gap, a person with knowledge of the talks said. Under the terms being reviewed, the loans would not be bundled into a common pool backed by the state, the person said.
HEAVY INVESTMENT: Moody’s affirmed the firm’s ‘Aa3’ rating with a ‘stable’ outlook due to its leading position in the industry and ability to match customer requirements Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co’s (TSMC, 台積電) revenue this year is expected to increase about 21 percent to NT$1.29 trillion (US$44.01 billion) from NT$1.07 trillion last year, driven by strong demand for advanced 5-nanometer and 7-nanometer chips mainly used in smartphones and high-performance computing devices, a Moody’s Investors Service report on Wednesday said. TSMC’s rate of revenue growth next year is to increase to 7.5 percent, the ratings agency said. The company, which supplies 5-nanometer chips for Apple Inc’s new iPad series, has introduced the advanced chips ahead of its competitors and gained a significant share of the market for the foundry industry’s
NO VIRUS BLUES: A SEMI Taiwan official said that the virus does not slow down the global semiconductor industry’s investment in manufacturing equipment The production value of the nation’s semiconductor industry is expected to grow 16.7 percent this year from last year, outpacing the global industry’s 3.3 percent growth, industry association SEMI said yesterday. That would help Taiwan safeguard its second spot in the global semiconductor market with a production value of more than NT$3 trillion (US$102.73 billion), SEMI Taiwan president Terry Tsao (曹世綸) told a media briefing in Taipei for the Semicon Taiwan trade show beginning today. The global semiconductor industry’s production value is expected to increase to US$426 billion this year, SEMI said. In terms of semiconductor equipment investment, equipment billings from Taiwanese firms
Intel Corp has received licenses from US authorities to continue supplying certain products to Huawei Technologies Co (華為), a company spokesman said yesterday. Washington has been pushing governments around to world to squeeze out Huawei, saying that the telecom giant would hand data to Beijing for espionage. From Monday last week, new curbs have barred US companies from supplying or servicing Huawei. This week, the state-backed China Securities Journal reported that Intel had received permission to supply Huawei. China’s Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp (SMIC, 中芯國際), which uses US-origin equipment to make chips for Huawei and other companies, last week confirmed that it had sought
Taipei Times: When do you think the hospitality industry can return to how it was before the COVID-19 pandemic? How does Formosa International Hotels Group (FIH, 晶華酒店集團) fare this quarter and beyond? FIH chairman Steve Pan (潘思亮): The virus outbreak will have a serious impact on business travel, driven mainly by meetings, incentive travel, conferences and exhibitions over the past three decades. For the past six months, many businesspeople have grown used to exchanging information on the Internet, where more people can participate. The trend might sustain for three to five years until people are vaccinated and it is safe to