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Fri, Sep 07, 2007 - Page 10 News List

World Business Quick Take

AGENCIES

■ AVIATION

Boeing delays test flight

Boeing Co said on Wednesday it was delaying the first test flight of its 787 Dreamliner by several weeks to complete final checks, but that the first deliveries were still planned for May. The US manufacturer had initially planned to mount a first flight of the Dreamliner, seen as the future profit driver for Boeing, late this month. Boeing executives said in a conference call that more time was needed to finish the Dreamliner's assembly and get key onboard computer equipment up and running. The first test flights are now set for between mid-November and mid-December.

■ BANKING

HSBC to open banks for rich

HSBC Holdings PLC announced yesterday it plans to launch its first retail banking branches for wealthy clients in Japan early next year. The British financial conglomerate said in a statement it will start banking services in January for individuals with at least 10 million yen (US$87,000) in assets. HSBC said the number of potential clients is estimated at 6.3 million in the Tokyo region and around the western metropolis of Osaka. HSBC said it plans to open the branches once it receives Financial Services Agency approval. Earlier this month, HSBC acquired a majority stake in South Korea's Korea Exchange Bank for US$6.3 billion.

■ BANKING

Reveal losses, says chief

Investment banks should reveal the full extent of losses they incurred in the recent credit crunch in the financial markets in an effort to boost investor confidence, Deutsche Bank's chief executive said in an interview published yesterday. Speaking to the Financial Times business daily, Josef Ackermann said that the "crucial question in the next few days and weeks is, how do you mark the positions?" "I can only hope that we do not muddle through -- that we mark them to market," he said, referring to financial markets terminology for assigning a value to a financial instrument, based on its market price.

■ TELECOMS

BT invests in China

BT Group Plc, Britain's largest phone company, will invest US$70 million in its first research and customer service facilities in China to meet customer demand. The company will open a research center in Shanghai and a customer service facility in Dalian this week, Francois Barrault, who runs the global services unit, told reporters at the World Economic Forum in Dalian yesterday. Barrault said he expected China to contribute US$250 million of revenue from this year through 2009, reiterating an earlier forecast. The new customer center will provide services to clients in China, Hong Kong, Japan, Korea and Taiwan, BT said.

■ ADVERTISING

JCDecaux inks contract

French group JCDecaux said on Wednesday it had signed an exclusive 15-year contract to provide advertising on the Shanghai metro worth about US$2.05 billion. The firm already manages all advertising bar the television advertisements on trains and platforms on the city's existing five metro lines. Under the new contract, it will continue this and also manage advertising on the eight new lines planned by 2012, JCDecaux said in a statement. By 2010, when the World Expo takes place in Shanghai, the company will have a presence on nine metro lines and 250 stations, reaching 6 million passengers a day.

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