Tue, May 07, 2019 - Page 10 News List

World Business Quick Take



Growth slows as exports dip

The Indonesian economy grew slower than expected in the first quarter, official data showed yesterday, as exports contracted for the first time since 2016 owing to softer demand for key commodities. Southeast Asia’s biggest economy expanded 5.07 percent in January to March, nearly flat from a year earlier and missing market estimates of 5.18 percent. An uptick in government and household spending buoyed growth, but imports and exports fell from a year ago, the statistics agency said.


Occidental revises offer

Occidental Petroleum Corp, which is in a bidding war with Chevron Corp to buy oil company Anadarko Petroleum Corp, on Sunday revised its offer and said it has found a buyer for Anadarko’s African investments if the deal goes through. Occidental is still offering US$76 a share for each share of Anadarko, the same as its bid from last month, but more of it is now in cash. The company said Total SA has agreed to buy Anadarko’s African assets for US$8.8 billion if the takeover happens.


India’s April PMI weakens

Expansion in India’s dominant services sector weakened last month ahead of an election, a private survey showed yesterday, suggesting a delayed recovery to Asia’s third-largest economy. The Nikkei India services purchasing managers’ index (PMI) fell to a seven-month low of 51 from 52 in March on the back of slower increases in new business and output growth. A survey last week showed that manufacturing also weakened last month.


UK plans registry change

The UK plans to change the corporate registration system to increase the transparency of company ownership and management information while protecting personal data to prevent fraud. Directors will be able to suppress personal details such as addresses under planned changes to the 170-year-old Companies House register published on Sunday. The register includes more than 4 million limited-ownership companies. The measures would help combat economic crime by making it easier to identify owners and managers of companies, the government said in a statement.


Baqir to head central bank

The Pakistani Ministry of Finance has appointed an IMF economist to head its central bank amid ongoing talks with the international lending agency over a key US$8 billion bailout package. The ministry late on Saturday named Reza Baqir as governor of the State Bank of Pakistan, hours after firing Tariq Bajwa. The head of a tax collection body, Jahanzeb Khan, was also dismissed. Bajwa and Khan were part of the team holding talks with the IMF in Islamabad.


Fair tax measures mulled

The government is mulling the introduction of new measures to increase the tax base to alleviate fiscal pressure on the middle class and increase funding for social services, Moroccan Minister of Finance Mohamed Benchaaboun said. The measures are aimed at making the rich pay their “fair” share of taxes, as well as fighting tax evasion and fraud, Benchaaboun said late on Saturday. Income tax is disproportionately collected with 73 percent of revenue coming from taxing wages, ministry data showed.

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