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NZ annual economic growth eases in Q3, RBNZ seen on hold WELLINGTON: New Zealand's economy grew more than expected in the third quarter, driven by production gains in agriculture and mining, but the pace of annual growth was subdued, keeping pressure off the central bank from raising interest rates until well into 2015. The economy grew a seasonally adjusted 1.0 percent in the three months to Sept. 30, stronger than economist forecasts for a quarterly rise of 0.7 percent due to a strong boost from dairy production and oil and gas extraction. The annual rate eased to 2.9 percent, short of expectations for 3.1 percent but still posting its fastest annual expansion since the March 2008 quarter. Following historical revisions due to calculation changes, annual and year-to-date growth rates were little changed from downwardly revised figures from the previous quarter. Annual growth was softer as expansion in agriculture and manufacturing eased from the same quarter a year ago, indicating that blistering ...

Two Egyptians, two Emiratis killed in military aircraft crash CAIRO: Four crew members were killed, two of them Egyptian and two Emirati, when their military aircraft crashed during joint exercises on Wednesday, officials said.The crash occurred in Egypt, the UAE's official news agency WAM said.The crash was caused by a technical problem, the Egyptian military said in a statement, without specifying what type of aircraft was involved.Egypt and the United Arab Emirates enjoy a close relationship, cooperating in various fields besides military activities.In August ...

Spain's family-run shops face last Christmas as rent controls end MADRID: On Madrid's main shopping street, the Gran Via, a toy store that has sold handmade dolls since it opened in 1942 just after Spain's Civil War, is preparing to close after the Christmas rush.Dolls decked out in classical clothes overflow in the large window of the shop, which is mentioned in several guide books to the city and attracts tourists who snap pictures of the display. "Thank you for 72 years", reads a sign ...

New families give Asian tsunami survivors chance of second life BANDA ACEH: Rusli Abdul Rahman and Fardhiah had been neighbours for years when the Asian tsunami devastated their small community in Indonesia's Aceh, killing both their spouses and their eight children. But they found a second chance at happiness by remarrying each other and having a son -- one of the many new families formed in the aftermath of a natural disaster that killed tens of thousands a decade ago.Fardhiah, 50, who goes by one ...

US, Cuba announce historic thaw in ties WASHINGTON: The United States and Cuba moved to end five decades of Cold War hostility Wednesday, agreeing to revive diplomatic ties in a surprise breakthrough that would also ease a crippling US trade embargo.In the wake of a prisoner exchange, President Barack Obama said Washington was ready for a "new chapter" in relations with communist Cuba and would re-establish its embassy in Havana, shuttered since 1961."We are all Americans," Obama declared, breaking into Spanish for ...

China home prices fall for third month, threaten economic growth BEIJING: China's home prices fell in November for a third consecutive month versus year-ago levels, Reuters calculations from official data showed on Thursday, pointing to an intractable property downturn despite government efforts to energise the market. Average home prices in 70 major Chinese cities were down an annual 3.7 percent last month from 2.6 percent down in October, the biggest drop since Reuters started calculating nationwide housing prices. The National Bureau of Statistics data showed ...

EU welcomes US-Cuba accord as 'historical turning point' BRUSSELS: The EU, seeking to normalise its own ties with Havana, on Wednesday welcomed a breakthrough US-Cuba accord to re-establish diplomatic relations after more than 50 years as a "historical turning point."The agreement represents "a victory of dialogue over confrontation," EU foreign affairs head Federica Mogherini said, adding that the EU also hoped ultimately to be able to "expand relations with all parts of Cuban society.""Today another Wall has started to fall," Mogherini said, with ...


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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 18, 2014
Reserves $14.04 bln