02082016Mon
Last update: Mon, 08 Feb 2016 07am

World - North America

Obama floats $10-a-barrel oil tax WASHINGTON: US President Barack Obama on Thursday proposed a $10-a-barrel tax on oil firms to pay for much needed infrastructure improvements.The $10 charge, phased in over five years, would be levied on companies -- but the costs could be passed on to consumers."For too long, bipartisan support for innovative and expansive transportation investment has not been accompanied by a long-term plan for paying for it," the White House said in a statement.The proposal comes amid current low oil prices and is also designed to wean Americans onto more climate-friendly fuels.The plan is highly unlikely to pass muster in the Republican-controlled Congress.Copyright AFP (Agence France-Presse), 2016


World - Global Business & Economy

IMF to consider boosting precautionary financing: Lagarde WASHINGTON: International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde said on Thursday that low oil and commodities prices would continue for some time, and the Fund will consider strengthening and broadening its array of precautionary financing instruments.In a speech at the University of Maryland, Lagarde said that advanced economies should take steps to support growth through accommodative monetary policy and infrastructure spending, while emerging economies can help by boosting non-commodity revenues and allowing more flexible exchange ...

World - Global Business & Economy

Brazil inflation set to start downward trend in January BRASILIA: Brazil's annual inflation rate probably fell slightly in January from a 12-year high, a Reuters poll showed on Friday, fueling hopes that price rises will finally start to ease after massive interest rate hikes and a deepening recession.Inflation as measured by the benchmark IPCA price index likely stood at 10.52 percent in the 12 months through January, down from 10.67 percent at the end of 2015, according to the median of 24 forecasts in ...

World - Middle East

Zarif says any Syria ceasefire should exclude operations against Nusra, IS LONDON: Any ceasefire in Syria should not include stopping military operations to combat terrorist groups, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Thursday."Ceasefire, based on everybody's interpretation, does not include giving a breathing space to recognised terrorist organisations," he told an event in British parliament. "Having a ceasefire is different from letting up the fight against terrorism."He named the Nusra Front and Islamic State as such organisations.Earlier Zarif had called for an immediate ceasefire ...

World - Europe

Turkish PM Davutoglu says humanitarian corridor to Aleppo cut off LONDON: The humanitarian corridor between Turkey and Aleppo in Syria has been cut off as Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's forces seek to inflict a siege of starvation on the city, Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said on Thursday.Speaking at a news conference after a Syria donor conference in London, Davutoglu said the forces were seeking to do the same to Aleppo as they did to the besieged town of Madaya, where dozens have starved to ...

World - Global Business & Economy

IMF's Lagarde says China's economy can avoid ‘hard landing’ WASHINGTON: China's economy can avoid a "hard landing" and shift to a lower, more sustainable growth rate if Beijing pursues reforms to state enterprises and sticks to a more market-driven and well-communicated exchange rate policy, the International Monetary Fund's chief said on Thursday."China is going through that massive, multi-faceted transition and we do not expect a hard landing of China as has been talked about for many years," IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde said in ...

World - Global Business & Economy

White House hopeful Syria peace talks will resume by the end of February WASHINGTON: The White House said on Thursday it was hopeful that Syria peace talks suspended by the United Nations in Geneva would be back on track by the end of the month."The U.N. representative ... did announce that the talks had been paused. He's used that terminology primarily because he expects the talks to resume before the end of the month," White House spokesman Josh Earnest said at a news briefing. "We're obviously hopeful that ...