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Thu, Jul 08, 2004 - Page 12 News List

World Business Quick Take

AGENCIES

■ Russia

Khodorkovsky offers stake

The main shareholder of Russian oil firm Yukos, Mikhail Khodorkovsky, has offered to give up his 44 percent stake in an 11th hour deal to save the company, the Financial Times reported yesterday. On the day Yukos must pay a US$3.4 billion tax bill or face a fire sale of its assets, many analysts had expected Khodorkovsky to try to broker such a deal to end Yukos' plight, which is widely seen as Kremlin punishment for his political ambitions. The newspaper quoting people close to the discussions, said he was willing to give some or all of his stake to the firm which would then either hand the shares directly to the authorities or sell them and use the cash to settle current and future tax claims.

■ Computers

Dell offers Linux in Europe

A line of Dell desktop com-puters running a version of the Linux operating system will be sold in Europe, broadening alternative offerings to Microsoft Corp's Windows software. The computers being sold online by Questar of Milan, Italy, will ship with Lindows Inc's Linspire operating system -- in English- or Italian-language versions -- and will receive Dell tech-nical support, Questar said on Tuesday. Starting at about US$575, the systems will be targeted at busi-nesses, schools and consu-mers. Dell is not offering any Linspire-based systems on its Web site. Though it halted Linux computer sales to businesses in 2001 due to low demand, Dell now sells workstations running Red Hat Inc's version of Linux. Hewlett-Packard said this spring that it was broad-ening its desktop Linux offerings for corporate clients.

■ Aviation

Japanese to work on 7E7

Japanese manufacturer Ishikawajima-Harima has decided to take part in developing engines for the new 7E7 jetliner by US aircraft maker Boeing Co, as talks were continuing over how much of the development costs it will shoulder. Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd and Mitsu-bishi Heavy Industries Ltd have both said they are negotiating over possible participation in the engine development although a decision has not been made. Boeing has selected General Electric Co and Rolls-Royce Group to develop and supply up to US$60 billion worth of engines for the 7E7. The twin-jet Dreamliner airplanes will carry 200 to 300 passengers and are set to start flying in 2008. The spokesman at Ishikawajima-Harima said it will likely develop turbines and parts for compressors in General Electric engines, counting on annual sales of about ?20 billion (US$183 million) by 2013.

■ Semiconductors

Infineon farms out work

Infineon is planning to farm out its machine mainte-nance work to external companies, a move that could affect around 700 jobs within the group, a super-visor board member said in a newspaper published yesterday. "The matter was discussed at the last meeting of the economic committee on May 19," said Klaus Luschtinetz, head of Infineons' general works council and a member of its supervisory board, in an interview with the Finan-cial Times Deutschland. The move would affect around 700 jobs at Infi-neon's factories in Regens-burg and Perlach in Ger-many and Villach in Austria. "We reject the plans and fear a loss of know-how and a dependence on service providers," Luschtinetz said.

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