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South Korea reacts with caution to new US-Japan defence ties SEOUL: South Korea on Tuesday responded cautiously to a new set of US-Japan defence guidelines, demanding close consultations with Seoul on issues concerning security on the Korean peninsula.Under the new guidelines, Japan could shoot down missiles heading toward the United States and come to the aid of third countries under attack, if the attack was deemed a threat to Japanese security.Seoul had been concerned that the new rules for defence cooperation unveiled on Monday might allow Japan to exercise the doctrine of "collective self-defense" around the Korean peninsula without its consent.South Korea hosts 28,500 US troops who help defend the South against threats from nuclear-armed North Korea."The government expects the United States and Japan ... to implement the guidelines in ways that contribute to regional peace and stability and to maintain close consultations with us in issues relating to security on the Korean peninsula and our national interests," South Korea's ...

Two roads partially blocked in Brazil as truck protest falters SAO PAULO: Truckers in Brazil partially blocked two federal roads at four points in the top soybean growing state of Mato Grosso on Monday, the federal highway police said. The protest has never blocked more than 20 points on federal highways since it started on Thursday. Traffic was stopped at more than 100 points at times during a two-week strike in late February. The drivers have been in talks with the government and freight companies ...

Battered South Korean president accepts PM resignation SEOUL: South Korean President Park Geun-Hye on Monday accepted the resignation of her prime minister over a widening bribery scandal that has tainted senior members of her faltering administration. Park was on a four-nation tour of South America when Lee Wan-Koo offered to step down. The decision was confirmed by an official from the president's office hours after her return.Although nominally the second highest official in the country, the prime minister fills a largely ceremonial ...

Cyprus sees reunification hope after Turkish Cypriot vote NICOSIA: Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades said Monday that he saw new hope of ending the island's decades-long division following the election as Turkish Cypriot leader of reconciliation champion Mustafa Akinci."At long last hope is created that our homeland can be reunited to create a modern state governed by EU principles, creating the prospects of cooperation, peace and tranquility," Anastasiades told a conference in Nicosia."Our hand is stretched out... as an invitation for cooperation. I would ...

Indian parliament kicks off debate on key tax reform NEW DELHI: India's parliament began debating a sales tax on Friday that seeks to transform the country into a common market, but experts said compromises made to enlist the support of states risked diluting the impact of the biggest tax reform in decades.The proposed goods and service tax (GST) would harmonise a mosaic of state and central levies into a national sales tax which business and policy makers hope would boost manufacturing and reduce corruption."GST ...

German Chancellor, Greek PM agree to stay in touch to reach debt deal ATHENS: Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and German Chancellor Angela Merkel agreed in a phone conversation on Sunday to maintain contact during talks between Athens and its lenders to reach a debt deal, a Greek government official said."During their communication, they expressed their common will for a steady communication throughout the course of negotiations in order to have a mutually beneficial solution soon," said the official, who declined to be named.Shut out of international markets ...

Putin says 'no regrets' on Crimea MOSCOW: Russian President Vladimir Putin said in an interview broadcast Sunday that he had no regrets over Moscow's 2014 annexation of Crimea and that it was righting a historical injustice."I think we did the right thing and I don't regret a thing," Putin said of his decision to take back the Black Sea peninsula from Ukraine, interviewed in a state television documentary."When we defend our (interests), we go to the end," Putin said."If people want ...


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Banking Review 2014

Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-1.586 bln
Exports $1.932 bln
Imports $3.518 bln
WeeklyMay 04, 2015
Reserves $17.491 bln