- Thailand defers spending US$480mil more to prop up rubber prices
- Airbus wins US$7bil PAL order despite US lobby
- Continued growth in M’sia-China trade
Posted: 28 Aug 2012 06:38 PM PDT
BANGKOK: The Thai cabinet has turned down a plan to spend another 15 billion baht (US$480mil) on buying rubber to prop up prices but will monitor the situation to see if further intervention is necessary, the deputy agriculture minister said.
"We still have two billion baht from the previous 15 billion baht budget left. We will spend what we have left first. Then an ad hoc rubber committee will consider what we should do next as the situation may change," Nattawut Saikuar told reporters.
Nattawut, who had announced the plan to beef up the buying scheme on Aug 21, was speaking after a cabinet meeting.
An intervention scheme launched in January has failed to raise unsmoked rubber sheet (USS3) to anywhere near the targeted price of 120 baht per kg and the government has bought only a fraction of the planned 200,000 tonnes.
USS3 was quoted at 82 baht per kg on Tuesday, while benchmark RSS3 smoked rubber sheet was at US$2.95 per kg. That was way below the record high of US$6.40 per kg hit in February 2011.
Demand for rubber has dropped because of the slowdown in the eurozone and other countries. Worries about defaults by Chinese buyers have added to the gloom.
In addition to its domestic intervention scheme, Thailand agreed with Indonesia and Malaysia on Aug 16, to cut exports by a total 300,000 tonnes to support prices.
The three countries account for 70% of global natural rubber output.
On Monday, the Thai Rubber Association said the export ban in Thailand would take effect from October. The government would cut quotas for companies, leading to a drop in exports each month of around 10% , or 25,000 tonnes.
Traders in Indonesia and Malaysia said they had heard nothing from the authorities there. Reuters
Posted: 28 Aug 2012 06:33 PM PDT
MANILA: Airbus won a US$7bil order to help more than triple Philippine Airlines Inc's fleet, beating Boeing Co to a deal despite the United States support for Manila in a diplomatic dispute with China.
The flag carrier plans to buy up to 100 new jets in total within the next five to seven years, its biggest ever fleet expansion in its 71-year history, as it restructures operations to become a low-cost carrier and regain dominance of the local market from archrival Cebu Air Inc.
Those purchases would take its fleet to around 140 planes, far ahead of Cebu's 38-strong fleet, which it plans to double.
Philippine Airlines (PAL) said it was still in talks with both Airbus and Boeing for its next tranche of planes.
For this stage of fleet expansion, the airline has ordered 10 long haul A330-300s and 44 jets from the A321 family, with delivery starting in 2013, Asia's oldest airline said in a statement.
The carrier is also ready to issue more shares to fund its jet purchases, it said in a statement.
"The good Boeing planes we are looking at are the 777-300 ER and the upcoming 777X.
"We're also interested in the Boeing 7879 Dreamliner," Ang told reporters on the sidelines of the deal signing event in Manila yesterday.
"We have the option on whichever type of aircraft to go," he pointed out.
Boeing and Airbus are locked in a global contest for market share, in some cases more than halving prices to bolster orders of the newly revamped models of best-selling narrow body jets, industry sources and analysts say.
San Miguel, which bought a 49% stake in PAL and a sister airline in April from Filipino billionaire and brewing rival Lucio Tan in a deal worth about US$500mil, controls the management of the airline.– Reuters
Posted: 28 Aug 2012 06:31 PM PDT
PETALING JAYA: The Malaysia-China Chamber of Commerce (MCCC) is confident that bilateral trade will continue to grow this year as there are increasing opportunities from China's inland cities.
MCCC secretary-general cum youth president and the chairman of the general affair committee Joseph Lim said there was the growth potential in China's second-tier cities.
"The growth rate for first-tier cities like Shanghai, Beijing and Guangzhou is plateau compared to the up and coming secondary cities.
"Population is growing in the second-tier cities and demand will grow as well," he told reporters after the announcement of the speakers' line-up for Malaysia-China Entrepreneur Conference (MCEC). MCCC co-organises the event with TNT Express Worldwide (M) Sdn Bhd.
According to Matrade, China's second-tier cities account for 51.3% of the republic's imports. Some of the cities that are growing rapidly include Chengdu, Chongqing, Xi'an, Zhengzhou and Shenyang.
Lim said China was still strong in exports to the South-East Asia region although its internal demands have softened.
Total Malaysia-China trade from January to June 2012 increased 14.6% to RM88.85bil.
Malaysia's main exports to China include electronic goods and natural resources like palm oil, rubber, tin, petroleum and timber, Lim added.
Exports from Malaysia to China increased by 3.5% to RM44.25bil in the first six months ofthis year.
MCEC will be held on Sept 8.
The three speakers are Horizon Research Consultancy Group chairman Dr Yuan Yue, Success through Multiple Intelligent Training Centre founder Professor Zhai Jie and Perfect (China) Co Ltd president Woo Swee Lian. The event has attracted more than 700 participants including 300 from overseas.
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