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Volvo Nov truck shipments fall 10pc, lag forecast STOCKHOLM: Global truck maker Volvo posted a 10 percent fall in shipments of its trucks in November, undershooting market expectations, as a slump in both Europe and South America weighed. The mean forecast in a Reuters poll of analysts was for deliveries at the maker of Volvo, Mack, UD Trucks and Renault trucks to fall 6 percent year-on-year. The Swedish group said deliveries fell 31 percent in its biggest market, Europe, while they were down 16 percent in South America. In North America, the one real bright spot for commercial vehicles demand in recent quarters, shipments rose 21 percent while they were up 9 percent in Asia. Copyright Reuters, 2014

AstraZeneca first-in-class ovarian cancer drug wins EU approval LONDON: AstraZeneca's all-important cancer drug business received a fillip on Thursday as a new medicine against ovarian cancer was approved in Europe, making it the first of its kind to reach the market. AstraZeneca has flagged Lynparza, or olaparib, as a potential $2-billion-a-year seller. The formal approval from the European Commission had been expected after the European Medicines Agency gave the drug a green light in October but the news is still significant given earlier ...

Swiss national bank introduces negative interest rates ZURICH: The Swiss National Bank surprised markets on Thursday by introducing a negative interest rate on sight deposit account balances, seeking to discourage safe-haven buying by investors anxious over the crisis in Russia and oil's slide. In a brief statement, the SNB said it would impose an interest rate of -0.25 percent on sight deposit account balances of over 10 million Swiss francs and expand its three-month Libor target range to -0.75 percent to 0.25 ...

Norway's central bank says has firm policy against currency intervention OSLO: Norway's central bank has a firm policy against intervening in the currency market and has no position on where the crown currency should be, central bank Governor Oeystein Olsen told national daily DN, confirming the bank's stance. The crown has been hit in recent months by the plunge in oil prices and suffered its biggest intraday drop in decades on Monday. It recovered by the end of the day, but is still nearly 10 ...

Indonesian finance minister says 7pc GDP growth in 2016 is 'possible' JAKARTA: Indonesia can lift its economic growth rate to 7 percent in 2016 barring any major turbulence, Finance Minister Bambang Brodjonegoro said on Thursday. This year, Indonesia will have its slowest growth since 2009. The finance ministry has forecast growth of 5.1 percent for 2014 and 5.8 percent for next year. Brodjonegoro also said on Thursday that Indonesia aims to cut its budget deficit to 1 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2019, partly ...

Japan auto lobby sounds alarm over weak domestic sales TOKYO: The head of Japan's auto lobby on Thursday said a "sense of crisis" hung over the industry, with unexpectedly weak domestic sales revealing the failure of government stimulus policies and currency turmoil hitting key export markets.Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association (JAMA) Chairman Fumihiko Ike said an April sales tax hike was only partly to blame for the domestic sales weakness, citing the government's failure to boost consumption. "We are seeing continued weakness in domestic new ...

Japan PM expected to tip BOJ board closer to his views in 2015 TOKYO: Two vacancies opening up in the Bank of Japan next year give premier Shinzo Abe a chance to tip the board's balance in favour of further monetary stimulus, removing a headache for his hand-picked central bank head.The board's composition has taken on greater significance after Governor Haruhiko Kuroda won a tight 5-4 vote in October's surprise expansion of an already radical monetary experiment that pumps roughly $84 billion each month into the economy.The October ...


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ICT 2014

Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-2.309 bln
Exports $1.957 bln
Imports $4.266 bln
WeeklyDecember 15, 2014
Reserves $13.922 bln