Japanese rates unchanged
The Bank of Japan decided yesterday to keep its benchmark interest rate unchanged at 0.5 percent, a move that had been widely expected in the market. The central bank's decision at the end of a two-day meeting was unanimous, it said in a statement. The bank also maintained its upbeat assessment of the economy in a monthly report, saying that production, exports and consumer spending are improving, keeping the economy on track for moderate expansion. The bank last changed the benchmark interest rate in February, doubling it from 0.25 percent.
Samsung opens US fab
South Korea's Samsung Electronics said yesterday it has opened a giant plant at Austin, Texas, to supply US customers with the most advanced memory chips used for various mobile devices. The plant, as large as nine football fields, will produce 12-inch wafers whose yields are 2.4 times greater than less advanced eight-inch wafers. The US$3.5 billion facility will produce 60,000 such wafers every month. The new plant will manufacture NAND flash memory chips, which are widely used in a host of products including MP3 players, mobile phones and digital cameras.
Nanjing to revive the Healey
China's Nanjing Auto (南京汽車) said yesterday it would revive the Austin Healey and Healey cars after decades off the road, as part of the deal that saw it buy part of Britain's defunct MG Rover Group. Nanjing Auto signed agreements on Tuesday with Healey Automobile Consultants, which had been responsible for the brands, to formally take control of them, Nanjing MG Automotive Company spokesman Lu Qiang said. Nanjing Auto, China's oldest car maker, bought the rights to develop the historic cars from the bankrupt MG Rover Group, once makers of the iconic Mini and Jaguar, in July 2005. The first Chinese made MGs came off the assembly line in March.
Browser copies hit a million
Apple Inc said on Thursday that users have downloaded more than 1 million copies of the Windows version of its Safari Internet browser in the first 48 hours it was available. The computer and consumer electronics company launched the Web browser on Monday, setting off another layer of competition with its archrival, Microsoft Corp. Safari had about 5 percent of the market share for Internet browsers with more than 18 million users when it was previously available only for Macintosh computers, according to Apple. Several researchers wasted no time in pointing out security vulnerabilities they found in the Windows version of Safari, and Apple issued an update to the browser on Thursday to fix those bugs.
Firm says paste now safe
A Chinese firm accused of manufacturing tainted toothpaste said it has stopped using a chemical found in antifreeze, Xinhua news agency reported yesterday amid a row about the safety of Chinese products. Shanghai White Cat Shareholding Co Ltd, maker of "MAXAM" toothpaste, said in a statement the company stopped using diethylene glycol in all products on May 21. The statement said the chemical, a thickening agent used in antifreeze, was commonly used in toothpaste.
HONG KONG SECURITY: The president blasted regulations requiring Taiwanese agents or political organizations to provide information on their Hong Kong-related activities President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) yesterday warned of countermeasures should controversial Chinese national security legislation imposed on Hong Kong undermine or harm Taiwanese interests. Article 43 of the legislation empowers the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region to serve written notices to Taiwanese political organizations or individual agents to furnish information on their Hong Kong-related activities, including their personal particulars, finances, assets, expenditure and capital in the territory. Failure to comply or providing false or incomplete information can result in a fine of HK$100,000 (US$12,903) or imprisonment of six months or two years respectively. Tsai said that Taiwan would keep a close watch on how
PROBE LAUNCHED: An officer who served as a supervisor in the drill died in an apparent suicide after the accident, which was caused by unexpected waves Two marines who were on Friday injured in a military exercise in the waters off Kaohsiung passed away yesterday, Navy Command said. The marines — surnamed Tsai (蔡), 26, and a sergeant surnamed Chen (陳), 36 — were in a seven-member Marine Corps team that encountered rough seas during a simulated response to enemy forces landing on Taiwan. Their rubber craft overturned in waters off Taoziyuan (桃子園) beach in Zuoying District (左營), injuring four of the marines. They were rushed to hospital, where three of them — Tsai, Chen and a 34-year-old sergeant — were taken to an intensive care unit
MORAL COURAGE: The Ministry of Foreign Affairs urged the global community to face China’s intention to subdue Taiwan and reject such irrational requests The Ministry of Foreign Affairs yesterday strongly condemned the Chinese government for meddling with US officials’ interactions with Taiwan after FBI Director Christopher Wray revealed China’s efforts to discourage US officials from visiting Taiwan. The greatest long-term threat to the US’ information security and intellectual property, as well as its economic vitality, is China’s counterintelligence and economic espionage operations, Wray told a video event at the Hudson Institute in Washington. Beijing is engaged in a highly sophisticated and maligning foreign influence campaign, with methods that include bribery, blackmail and covert deals, he said. Giving an example, Wray said that when a US official
‘SIGNAL TO ALLIES’: The US Navy’s exercises are not in response to those carried out by China, the commander of the strike group led by the USS ‘Ronald Reagan’ said Two US aircraft carriers were yesterday conducting exercises in the disputed South China Sea, the US Navy said as China also carried out military drills that have been criticized by the US Department of Defense and neighboring states. China and the US have accused each other of stoking tension in the waterway at a time of strained relations over everything from COVID-19 to trade to Hong Kong. The USS Nimitz and USS Ronald Reagan were carrying out operations and exercises in the South China Sea “to support a free and open Indo-Pacific,” the navy said in a statement. It did not say exactly