■ Central Banking
BOJ favors rate hike
Bank of Japan Governor Toshihiko Fukui wants to raise interest rates early but gradually, warning there is a risk of not moving soon enough to fend off inflation, a report said yesterday. "I will handle [rates] quickly and gradually," Fukui said in an interview with the Yomiuri Shimbun. "If we fail to adjust policy, worrying too much about the downside risk to the economy, we will rather create more risk."
AirAsia wants more planes
Low-cost aviation pioneer AirAsia Bhd plans to accelerate its fleet expansion to accommodate a rapid increase in passenger traffic, the airline's group chief executive, Tony Fernandes, said yesterday. Fernandes told the Aviation Outlook industry conference that he expected AirAsia to carry 16 million passengers in the fiscal year ending next June, up from 9.31 million in the last fiscal year. The carrier has ordered 100 Airbus A320s, has options
on another 30 and is considering buying yet more planes, Fernandes said. "We could do with a lot more aircraft," he said.
Nissin rescues Myojo
Japanese instant noodle giant Nissin Food Products is in tie-up talks with Myojo Foods in order to fend off a hostile takeover bid by a US fund for its rival, a report said yesterday. If an agreement is reached, Nissin will likely launch a friendly offer for Myojo to trump a hostile approach by Steel Partners Japan Strategic Fund for Myojo, the Nihon Keizai Shimbun said without citing sources. Nissin, known for its flagship Cup Noodle products, has emerged as a "white knight" after Myojo sought its help to fend off an unwanted suitor, the report said.