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Mon, Jul 28, 2008 - Page 10 News List

World Business Quick Take

AGENCIES

■ LABOR

Shoemakers strike

Nearly 14,000 workers at a South Korean footwear company in Vietnam have gone on strike to demand higher salaries, blaming the action on rising consumer prices, state media said yesterday. The workers of Hwa Seung Vina in southern Dong Nai Province stopped work on Saturday, asking company leaders to raise their incomes by at least 300,000 dong (US$18), said Tuoi Tre daily newspaper. The management of the company, which produces shoes for export, offered to raise workers’ salary by 200,000 dong but the compromise did not work, the paper said.

■ CHINA

Farmers’ income rises

Chinese farmers’ income in the first half of this year rose 10.3 percent in real terms from a year ago, state media said yesterday, signaling some success for policies to improve life in the countryside. By contrast, people in the cities saw a more modest 6.3 percent rise in incomes after deducting inflation, the Xinhua news agency reported, citing the National Bureau of Statistics. However, despite the faster income growth in the countryside the disparity between rural and urban areas remains huge. The average farmer made 2,528 yuan (US$370) in the first six months of the year, compared with 8,065 yuan for the average urban dweller, Xinhua reported.

■ EXPORTS

Palm oil exports to increase

Malaysia will put in place a series of measures to stabilize plummeting global palm oil prices including selling off crude stocks, a report said yesterday. Peter Chin, minister of plantation industries and commodities, told the Sunday Star newspaper that the government wanted to make sure that the almost 25 percent drop in prices in recent months did not become a long-term trend. Chin said the country would export crude — not refined — palm oil to China, India, Pakistan and the Middle East. It will also increase exports to Western countries where palm oil can be used as bio-fuel during the upcoming northern hemisphere winter, he said.

■ MANAGEMENT

Jobs not at death’s door

Apple Inc CEO Steve Jobs, who has been dogged by investor concerns about his health, does not have recurrent cancer or a life-threatening health issue, the New York Times reported on Saturday. “While his health problems amounted to a good deal more than ‘a common bug,’ they weren’t life-threatening and he doesn’t have a recurrence of cancer,” journalist Joe Nocera wrote in a column. Nocera said he spoke to the Apple CEO about his health. In 2004, Jobs, 53, announced he had undergone successful surgery to remove a rare type of pancreatic cancer. Concerns about his health roared back last month, when a thinner-than-usual Jobs introduced the latest iteration of the iPhone in San Francisco.

■ COMPUTERS

Warning of ‘UPS’ virus

Internet users are being warned too look out for e-mail messages claiming to be from package courier UPS. The messages, delivered in English and in German, actually originate from hackers, the German Federal Agency for Security in Information Technology reported recently. The messages tell the recipient that a package could not be delivered because of a non-existent address. The message then encourages the user to click on an e-mail attachment to check the delivery slip data; anyone who does so allows a Trojan virus to sneak onto their computer.

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