Tue, May 16, 2017 - Page 10 News List

World Business Quick Take

Agencies

ECONOMY

China hit by weak demand

Factories and workshops last month saw their output slow sharply, data showed yesterday, as the world’s second-largest economy grapples with tighter credit and weaker demand. Industrial production rose 6.5 percent from a year ago, the Chinese National Bureau of Statistics said, compared with 7.6 percent in March. Other figures also disappointed. Last month retail sales rose 10.7 percent year-on-year, below the previous month’s reading, while fixed-asset investment excluding rural areas — a gauge of spending on real estate, roads and bridges — rose 8.9 percent in the first four months of the year, compared with 9.2 percent in January to March.

ECONOMY

Thailand in recovery

The Thai economy saw a slight pick-up in the first quarter of the year, data showed yesterday, as the nation recovers from a dip caused by the death of its former king. The first three months of the year saw GDP expand 3.3 percent year-on-year, up from 3 percent the previous quarter. Thai National Economic and Social development board Secretary-General Porametee Vimolsiri said growth was fueled by “the agriculture sector, government spending and growth in the export sector.” The economy was expected to grow between 3.3 percent and 3.8 percent this year, compared with last year’s 3.2 percent, he said.

DEVELOPMENT

AIIB expects 85 members

The China-backed Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) expects to have 85 members by the end of this year, its president, Jin Liqun (金立群), said on Sunday. “Now we have 77 members. By the end of this year, we expect to have about 85 members, including Hong Kong,” Jin said at the Belt and Road Forum in Beijing. On Saturday, AIIB said its board of governors had adopted resolutions approving seven applicants to join the bank, bringing the total approved membership to 77. The seven — Bahrain, Cyprus, Samoa, Bolivia, Chile, Greece and Romania — are to officially join once they deposit their first installment of capital with the bank.

PHARMACEUTICALS

Thermo Fisher eyes Patheon

Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc is in talks to buy Patheon NV, the Dutch maker of drug ingredients, according to people with knowledge of the matter. An agreement could be reached as early as this week, the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private. Thermo Fisher has a market value of about US$67 billion in New York, while Patheon is worth about US$3.8 billion based on its current share price. Talks could still falter, and there is no certainty a deal will be reached, the people said. Thermo Fisher and Patheon could not immediately be reached for comment.

AUTOMAKERS

Audi, Porsche recall SUV’s

Audi and Porsche are recalling a about 300,000 sports utility vehicles (SUVs) because they might develop cracks that cause fuel to leak, which raises the risk of fire. Volkswagen Group of America’s Audi recall covers 240,487 Q5 and Q7 vehicles, with model years ranging from 2013 to 2017. Porsche’s separate recall covers 51,497 vehicles, including certain 2015 to 2017 Macan S and Macan Turbo vehicles and 2017 Macan, Macan Turbo with the Performance Package and Macan GTS vehicles.

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