US, India reach tax deal
The US on Wednesday said it had reached a deal to lift never-implemented levies on India in exchange for the easing of its tax targeting international tech firms. India is among countries that had imposed a tax on foreign digital services, which earned Washington’s ire since it considers such levies an unfair attack on US tech giants. The US Department of Treasury said in a statement that India would instead follow a minimum tax deal reached last month by 140 countries under the auspices of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. That agreement would see the imposition of a 15 percent minimum corporate tax worldwide and is expected to come into effect in 2023.
China eyes methane control
China will look into methane emissions in key industries, including coal mining, agriculture and petroleum, and publish a nationwide methane emission control action plan, the Ministry of Ecology and Environment told a news briefing yesterday. China’s methane emissions were 55.29 million tonnes in 2014, accounting for 10.4 percent of total greenhouse gases emission in the nation, the latest official data showed. The energy sector contributed 45 percent of the methane discharge, while agriculture accounted for 40 percent. The ministry said it would roll out thorough research on China’s methane emission control situation and set effective emission reduction measures.
IEA head appeals to OPEC
International Energy Agency (IEA) Executive Director Fatih Birol on Wednesday called on OPEC and its allies to take measures to help bring oil prices down to reasonable levels. “I very much hope to see in the next meeting or meetings they ... make the necessary steps in order to comfort the global oil markets and help bring the prices down at reasonable levels,” Birol told reporters. He also took aim at Russia over gas. “Russia can easily increase exports to Europe about 15 percent ... and significantly comfort the European gas markets,” Birol said.
Woman to head central bank
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador on Wednesday nominated Deputy Minister of Finance Victoria Rodriguez as the next Bank of Mexico governor, the first woman to head the central bank. The announcement came a day after former minister of finance Arturo Herrera said Lopez Obrador had withdrawn his candidacy for the post, unsettling financial markets. “For the first time, a woman will be heading the Bank of Mexico,” Lopez Obrador told reporters, saying the nomination, which requires approval by the senate, was part of efforts to promote gender equality. As deputy finance minister, Rodriguez “has acted with great responsibility so as not to spend just to spend,” he added.
Cathay to slash HK flights
Cathay Pacific yesterday said it would slash passenger flights into Hong Kong next month as the territory’s strict travel curbs continue to keep international travelers away at a time when rivals are seeing their prospects improve. As the peak holiday season approaches, the airline will convert about one-third of flights bound for Hong Kong to handle cargo, the South China Morning Post reported, citing company sources.
Taiwan is to start producing geothermal energy on a commercial scale for the first time in nearly 30 years tomorrow, when an Yilan County facility begins operations. The 4.2 megawatt Cingshuei Geothermal Power Plant in Datong Township (大同) — the first privately built geothermal power plant in Taiwan — was granted commercial license by the Bureau of Energy on Oct. 27, county authorities told the Central News Agency on Tuesday. Lin Kun-wei (林坤緯), a section head at the Yilan Business and Tourism Department, said that the facility would generate up to 3,150 kilowatts per hour, which could meet the demand of up
JPMorgan Chase & Co chief executive officer Jamie Dimon on Tuesday quipped that his company is likely to outlast the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), while reiterating the bank’s commitment to the country in wide-ranging comments that also touched on Taiwan, free speech and former US president Donald Trump. “We hope to be there [in China] for a long time,” Dimon told a panel discussion at the Boston College Chief Executives Club. Relaying a “joke” he made during a recent visit to Hong Kong, he said “The communist party is celebrating its 100th year. So is JPMorgan. And I’ll make you a
Zero emissions and, soon, zero crew: The world’s first fully electric autonomous cargo vessel was unveiled in Norway, a small but promising step toward reducing the maritime industry’s climate footprint. By shipping up to 120 containers of fertilizer from a plant in the southeastern town of Porsgrunn to Brevik’s port 12km away, the much-delayed Yara Birkeland, shown off to the media on Friday, would eliminate the need for about 40,000 truck journeys a year that are now fueled by polluting diesel. “Of course, there have been difficulties and setbacks, but then it feels even more rewarding to stand here today in front
The Kaohsiung City Government yesterday said it would impose a property hoarding tax as it is seeking to contain speculation in the real-estate market, calling recent price increases “abnormal.” The announcement came in support of the Ministry of Finance’s call for local governments to levy a high tax rate on people with more than one property. Ministry officials on Tuesday discussed strategies to rein in speculation with the nation’s six special municipalities, as well as the Hsinchu city and county governments. About 84,000 out of 1.06 million housing units in Kaohsiung are not residential property, the city government said in a