Hyundai issues US recall
Hyundai Motor Co, South Korea’s largest automaker, will recall about 139,500 cars in the US because of steering issues that could result in a loss of or reduction in maneuvering capability, the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said. The model-year 2011 Sonata sedans manufactured between Dec. 11 last year and Sept. 10, are subject to the plan, the agency said in a statement on its Web site. Hyundai Motor America informed the agency it is voluntarily initiating a safety recall of Sonata sedans to inspect the steering issues, Hyundai Motor said in an e-mailed statement yesterday.
Ford plans new China plant
US auto giant Ford Motor Co said on Saturday that it signed an agreement with Chinese officials to open a second engine plant in the southwestern city of Chongqing. Plant construction is set to begin next year, with engine production scheduled to begin in 2013, the company said in a statement. The US$500 million investment will be funded entirely by Changan Ford Mazda Automobile Ltd (CFMA) — a three-way joint venture involving Ford, Changan Motors and Mazda Motor Co — and located in Chongqing’s New North Zone. “With the additional capacity of 400,000 units at the new plant, CFMA is more than doubling its existing engine capacity of 350,000, to 750,000 engines annually,” Ford said.
German banks worry officials
European Commission officials are worried about the fragility of three regional banks in Germany, the weekly Der Spiegel reported on Saturday. A letter from the commission to State Secretary to the Ministry of Finance Joerg Asmussen expresses concerns about the threat that WestLB, BayernLB and HSH Nordbank might pose to market stability. “For the commission, it is indispensable to have the certainty that rescued institutions are viable in the long term and that they do not represent a permanent threat to the stability of the financial markets,” the letter said. Describing the three banks’ latest results as “disappointing,” the letter adds: “Given the good current conditions, these figures, in the three cases, are not convincing.”
China starts inter-bank loans
China has begun allowing banks to sell loans to each other, in a move designed to reduce financial risks and help banks meet stricter capital requirements, the central bank said on Saturday. The interbank loan transfer system launched in Shanghai will also help improve monetary policy transmission and strengthen control in the financial sector, People’s Bank of China Governor Zhou Xiaochuan (周小川) said in a statement. The system launched amid growing concerns among policymakers about the potential for an explosion of bad debts in the banking sector, after new loans nearly doubled to 9.6 trillion yuan (US$1.4 trillion) last year.
UAE says RIM talks ‘positive’
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is “very optimistic” about reaching an accord with Research in Motion Ltd (RIM) to solve a dispute about BlackBerry services in the country, Abu Dhabi Executive Council secretary-general Mohammed Ahmed al-Bowardi said. “Talks are very advanced and positive,” al-Bowardi told reporters in Abu Dhabi yesterday. “We are very optimistic it will be resolved before the deadline.” BlackBerry Messenger, e-mail and Web browsing services will be halted in the UAE on Oct. 11.
The US Department of State yesterday criticized Beijing over its misrepresentation of the US’ “one China” policy in the latest diplomatic salvo between the two countries over a bid by Taiwan to regain its observer status at the World Health Assembly, the decisionmaking body of the WHO. “The PRC [People’s Republic of China] continues to publicly misrepresent U.S. policy,” Department of State spokesman Ned Price wrote on Twitter. “The United States does not subscribe to the PRC’s ‘one China principle’ — we remain committed to our longstanding, bipartisan one China policy, guided by the Taiwan Relations Act, Three Joint Communiques, and
FATES LINKED: The US president said that sanctions on Russia over Ukraine must exact a ‘long-term price,’ because otherwise ‘what signal does that send to China?’ US President Joe Biden yesterday vowed that US forces would defend Taiwan militarily in the event of a Chinese attack in his strongest statement to date on the issue. Beijing is already “flirting with danger,” Biden said following talks with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida in Tokyo, in which the pair agreed to monitor Chinese naval activity and joint Chinese-Russian exercises. Asked if Washington was willing to get involved militarily to defend Taiwan, he replied: “Yes.” “That’s the commitment we made,” Biden said. “We agreed with the ‘one China’ policy, we signed on to it ... but the idea that it can be
INFORMATION LEAKED: Documents from Xinjiang purportedly showed top leaders in Beijing calling for a forceful crackdown and even orders to shoot to kill Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) yesterday held a videoconference with UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet as she visited Xinjiang during a mission overshadowed by fresh allegations of Uighur abuses and fears she is being used as a public relations tool. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has been accused of detaining more than 1 million Uighurs and other Muslim minorities in the region as part of a years-long crackdown the US and lawmakers in other Western nations have labeled a “genocide.” China denies the allegations. Bachelet was expected to visit the cities of Urumqi and Kashgar on a six-day tour. The US
SUBTLE? While Biden said the US policy of ‘strategic ambiguity’ on Taiwan had not changed, the group targeted China and Russia without naming them Leaders of Australia, India, Japan and the US yesterday warned against attempts to “change the status quo by force,” as concerns grow about whether China could invade Taiwan. The issue of Taiwan loomed over a leadership meeting in Tokyo of the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (Quad) nations — the US, Japan, Australia and India — who stressed their determination to ensure a free and open Indo-Pacific region in the face of an increasingly assertive China, although Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said the group was not targeting any one country. The four leaders said in a joint statement issued after their talks