CMEC to aid smelter
China’s state-owned China Machinery Engineering Corp (CMEC, 中國機械設備工程) is to modernize Tajikistan’s flagship aluminum smelter in a US$545 million deal. A representative for Tajik Aluminium Co (Talco) on Friday said that “the contract between CMEC and Talco was signed on April 15.” Talco’s smelter is a key industrial asset in an impoverished and mostly agrarian nation of 9 million bordering China. Annual production of the smelter fell 7.2 percent last year and its Soviet-era equipment is in sore need of upgrading.
Petition supports accuser
Hundreds of people have added their names to an online petition in support of a University of Minnesota student who said she was raped in August last year by Richard Liu (劉強東), the CEO of e-commerce retailer JD.com Inc (京東). The student, Liu Jingyao (劉靜瑤), from China, filed a civil lawsuit against Richard Liu in a Minneapolis court on Tuesday, nearly four months after prosecutors declined to press criminal charges against him. The company did not immediately respond to an e-mailed request for comment.
Fraud suspect extradited
The nation has extradited an Indian national to the US to face charges in a call center operation that allegedly defrauded millions of dollars from people in the US, the US Department of Justice announced on Friday. Hitesh Madhubhai Patel, 42, of Ahmedabad, India, was scheduled to be arraigned on Friday in a Houston, Texas, federal court for his role in a case that was first announced in 2016, charging 60 people with wire fraud and money laundering conspiracy.
Malayan ends agreement
Malayan Banking Bhd (Maybank) ended a collaboration agreement with Tuaspring and Hyflux Ltd. The termination of the agreement is expected to have a material impact on the group’s financial performance, Hyflux said in a statement to the Singapore Exchange. Maybank also stated its intention to appoint receivers and managers over the assets of Tuaspring, save for its desalination plant and shared infrastructure, according to Hyflux. The company is saddled with S$2.8 billion (US$2.1 billion) of unsecured claims and default notices.
Reliance denies PDVSA link
Reliance Industries Ltd does not have any arrangement to buy crude oil from Venezuela’s state-owned oil company, Petroleos de Venezuela SA (PDVSA), for payment in cash to third parties and media reports of such a mechanism are false, the company said in a statement. While releasing quarterly results on Thursday, Reliance chief financial officer V. Srikanth said it was sourcing Venezuelan crude from Russian and Chinese companies. Payment made to them for supplies are adjusted against dues owed by Venezuela to these companies, Srikanth said.
Manhattan sale confirmed
Vornado Realty Trust sold almost half of a US$5.6 billion collection of Manhattan properties to Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund, the Qatar Investment Authority, and Crown Acquisitions Inc. The buyers would each acquire stakes of about 24 percent.
DEVELOPING TALENT: The electronics contractor is looking to recruit people to work in core tech fields and emerging industries like electric cars and robotics Hon Hai Precision Industry Co (鴻海精密), the world’s largest contract electronics maker, has launched a recruitment drive, offering a monthly salary of no less than NT$45,000 (US$1,485) to university graduates. For those with a master’s degree, the starting pay would be NT$52,000 per month at the minimum, while doctorate degree holders would receive at least NT$60,000 a month, Hon Hai said a statement issued early this week. The latest recruitment drive is aimed at attracting talent in core technology fields — artificial intelligence, semiconductors and next-generation mobile communications — and emerging industries — electric vehicles, digital healthcare and robotics, the
MRT TRAVEL FALLS: In February, ridership on the Taipei MRT System fell 8.96 percent from an average of 2.01 million per day in January Scooter sales jumped 13 percent last month as more commuters turned to two-wheelers to avoid public transportation amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the latest statistics showed. Sales expanded to 74,493 units last month, compared with 65,913 units in February, statistics released on Wednesday by Kwang Yang Motor Co (光陽工業) and the Ministry of Transportation and Communications showed. In the first quarter, aggregate sales slid 0.51 percent year-over-year to 186,627 units, from 187,580 units, data showed. Kwang Yang, the nation’s biggest scooter manufacturer, continued to lead the market by selling 24,136 vehicles last month, growing 6.12 percent from 20,785 units in the previous month, while
Asustek Computer Inc (華碩), the nation’s leading PC vendor, yesterday launched its first dual-screen gaming laptop powered by Intel Corp’s latest central processing units (CPUs). The PC manufacturer’s announcement closely followed the US chipmaker’s unveiling of its 10th Generation Core H-series, the fastest commercial mobile processors with speeds of up to 5 gigahertz. Although Asustek’s Zephyrus Duo 15, the highlight of its Republic of Gamers line, is not the company’s first laptop with two screens, it is its first designed specifically for gaming. Nestled between the primary display panel and the keyboard, the secondary display, which Asustek calls the ScreenPad Plus, is angled
NO ILL EFFECT: Last month’s data mainly reflected deals made in February, when the spread of COVID-19 was still relatively mild in Taiwan, housing brokers said Housing transactions in the six special municipalities totaled 19,824 units last month, up 7.8 percent from a year earlier, brokers said, citing government data. Last month’s data mainly reflected deals made in February, when the pinch of the COVID-19 pandemic was not yet evident, they said. Taoyuan posted the largest improvement, with housing transactions soaring 36.6 percent year-on-year to 3,676 units, local government data showed. Taiwan Realty Co (台灣房屋) attributed the pickup to the completion of two presale residential projects in the municipality. Houses in Taoyuan have increasingly gained in popularity in the past few year years due to relatively affordable home prices and