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Thu, Oct 23, 2003 - Page 12 News List

World Business Quick Take

AGENCIES

■ IPR protection
Genesis loses lawsuit

Genesis Microchip Inc, the world's biggest maker of chips for flat-panel computer monitors, said a US trade agency judge ruled that two Taiwanese competitors didn't infringe a patent. The US International Trade Commission administrative law judge's finding that the Genesis Microchip patent wasn't infringed by Media Reality Technologies Inc (晶捷科技) and Trumpion Microelectronics Inc (創品電子) isn't final, the company said. Genesis Microchip said it ask will the full commission to overturn the judge's finding. Three other patents remain in the case filed with the agency. Genesis Microchip, based in San Jose, California, filed the complaint seeking to ban the import of products using its patented innovations.

■ Macroeconomics

IMF raises HK's forecasts

The IMF may raise its GDP growth forecast for Hong Kong due to positive effects from close ties with the booming mainland Chinese economy, IMF deputy research director David Robinson said yesterday. Hong Kong's burgeoning economic recovery was being propelled by positive factors including a rise in Chinese tourists and the signing of the Closer Economic Partnership Arrangement (CEPA) with China in June, he said. Hong Kong firms and professionals will be granted easier access to China's huge market when the CEPA trade agreement comes into effect on Jan. 1, giving them an important headstart over foreign competitors. As a result, "the IMF is considering raising its GDP growth forecasts for Hong Kong," which currently stand at 1.5 percent for this year and 2.8 percent for next, said Robinson.

■ Semiconductros

Xilinx to farm out new chips

Xilinx Inc, the world's biggest designer of programmable semiconductors, is in talks with chipmakers, including Japanese companies, on making chips using finer circuitry widths, a move that would place the company ahead of closest rival Altera Corp in terms of production techniques. "We are now in talks with chipmakers, including the Japanese, to decide where to farm out system chips with circuitry of 65 nanometers," chief executive Willem Roelandts said in an interview this week in Tokyo without saying which companies he's talked to. A nanometer is one-billionth of a meter. The most advanced chips now use circuits with features 90 nanometers wide. The San Jose, California-based chipmaker began using 90-nanometer technology a year ahead of competitors by contracting production to Hsinchu, Taiwan-based United Microelectronics Corp (聯電), the world's No. 2 supplier of made-to-order chips.

■ Internet

US net surfers at new high

The number of US Internet users topped 150 million in September for the first time, a market research group said Tuesday. The report by comScore Media Metrix also found that time spent online also grew, driven by students returning to universities after summer vacation. "In September, a number events impacted Americans' use of the Internet, including Hurricane Isabel, the kickoff of the NFL [National Football League] season and students returning to school," said Peter Daboll, president of comScore Media Metrix. Microsoft and its MSN sites topped the list of most visited sites with 110 million users, followed by America Online and Time Warner sites with 109 million. Close behind was Yahoo with 108 million.

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