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Sat, Dec 13, 2008 - Page 10 News List

World Business Quick Take

AGENCIES

■ COMMUNICATIONS

Alcatel-Lucent to cut jobs

Telecom equipment giant Alcatel-Lucent said yesterday it planned to cut 1,000 management posts and reduce its sub-contractors by 5,000 in an effort to save 750 million euros (US$1 billion). Alcatel-Lucent said it hoped to realize the savings by the fourth quarter next year, with production costs cut accordingly by a third, and research and development cut by two thirds. Previous restructuring plans included 16,500 job losses worldwide by the end of next year after the company chalked up a series of heavy losses.

■ RUSSIA

Country in recession: official

News agencies quoted a senior economic official as saying that the country faces at least two quarters of economic decline and is therefore in recession. RIA-Novosti and Interfax quoted Deputy Economics Minister Andrei Klepach as saying, “The recession has started already.” Klepach also reportedly said the economy will expand by less than the projected 6.8 percent this year. The economy grew by 8.1 percent last year. Meanwhile, Moody’s Investors Service said yesterday it has cut the outlook on the nation’s key ratings to “stable” from “positive,” owing to pressure on the country’s liquidity.

■ JAPAN

Law passed to help banks

The parliament yesterday approved a law to let the government pump public funds into banks to protect them from the financial crisis. The lower house of parliament, where Prime Minister Taro Aso’s coalition holds a majority, approved the law by overriding the less powerful upper house, which is controlled by the opposition. The law allows the government to pre-emptively inject public funds into ailing banks when the government deems necessary.

■ TECHNOLOGY

Nortel may lose listing

One of Canada’s most valuable tech companies, Nortel Networks Corp, said on Thursday that it is in danger of losing its listing on the New York Stock Exchange. The network equipment maker announced it received notice from the NYSE that it failed to meet one of the index’s listing requirements after maintaining an average closing price below US$1 for more than 30 consecutive trading days ending Dec. 9. Nortel, a former flagship of the Canadian high-technology industry, said the NYSE has given the company six months in which to boost its stock price, during which time shares will remain listed.

■ GAMING

Las Vegas Sands to cut jobs

International casino owner Las Vegas Sands Corp is cutting more than 200 workers from its Venetian and Palazzo casino-hotels on the Las Vegas Strip as part of an effort to save US$100 million annually companywide. The layoffs amount to about 2 percent of the two casinos’ 10,000-strong work force. Sands spokesman Ron Reese says the company, which laid off 50 workers three weeks ago, has not ruled out more cuts later. He would not say how much the cuts would save.

■ TRANSPORTATION

Singapore to expand fund

The Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) said Friday it was extending and expanding its Air Hub Development Fund (AHDF) to help airlines and airport service providers affected by the global economic downturn. The AHDF, scheduled to expire on Dec. 31, would be extended by a year with an expanded budget of S$130 million (US$87.37 million) compared with the current S$100 million.

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