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US, Cuba to hold embassy talks next Thursday: State Department WASHINGTON: American and Cuban officials will meet on May 21 to discuss reopening embassies and tackle broader migration, security and environmental issues, the US State Department said Thursday.The US top official for Latin America, Roberta Jacobson, will host a team from the Cuban government led by Havana's director of US affairs, Josefina Vidal.A State Department spokesperson said reestablishing embassies would allow greater cooperation between the former Cold War foes, who announced in December they would move to thaw ties after 50 years of animosity. "A US embassy in Havana will allow the United States to more effectively promote our interests and values, and increase engagement with the Cuban people," the spokesperson said in a statement."The United States and Cuba have seen growing communication on a variety of issues, including matters of mutual concern such as migration, law enforcement, access to information, environmental protection and trafficking in persons."The two sides have ...

US Senate advances trade negotiating authority for Obama WASHINGTON: Following days of obstruction from lawmakers in President Barack Obama's own Democratic party, the US Senate advanced contentious legislation Thursday allowing him to swiftly finalize a landmark Pacific trade pact.The 65 to 33 vote marked a victory for the White House and free-trade Republicans who had united in an effort to press ahead with Obama's biggest domestic legislative priority in the remaining 20 months of his presidency.But it belied what may be a tough ...
US, Cuba to meet in coming weeks on reopening embassies: minister HAVANA: The United States and Cuba will hold another meeting in the coming weeks in Washington on reopening embassies, the latest step in their historic rapprochement, Havana's Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez said Wednesday."In the coming weeks, there will be a new round of negotiations in Washington on reestablishing diplomatic relations and opening embassies," he told AFP in an exclusive interview.The exact date has not yet been set, he said.The two sides have held several rounds ...
Obama picks new chiefs for US Army, Navy WASHINGTON: President Barack Obama has chosen a submarine officer to serve as the next head of the US Navy and an infantry officer who commanded troops in Afghanistan for army chief, officials said Wednesday.Admiral John Richardson, currently the head of naval reactors, has been nominated to lead the navy, and General Mark Milley, who also served in Iraq, was picked to lead the army.In announcing the nominations, Defense Secretary Ashton Carter praised Milley as "a ...
Obama, Senate Democrats huddle on next steps for fast-track  trade bill %9 %9 WASHINGTON: President Barack Obama huddled with Senate Democrats on Tuesday to talk about how to move forward after Democrats blocked debate on granting him trade promotion authority (TPA), an administration official said."The president convened a meeting today with Senate Democrats, including members who have publicly indicated their support for advancing a TPA bill, to discuss a path forward for this legislation," the official said, speaking on background.Copyright Reuters, 2015 ...
Obama speaks to Saudi king amid claim of summit snub: White House WASHINGTON: The White House said President Barack Obama spoke to Saudi Arabia's King Salman Monday, after the Gulf monarch pulled out of a high-profile meeting.The pair discussed the "upcoming GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) summit" at Camp David on Thursday, said top Obama foreign policy aide Ben Rhodes, playing down talk of a rift.Copyright AFP (Agence France-Presse), 2015 ...
Kerry to visit China this week, then South Korea WASHINGTON: US Secretary of State John Kerry will meet senior officials in China late this week, and then stop in Seoul for talks with South Korean leaders, the State Department announced Monday.Kerry will make the Asia trip after high-stakes talks in Russia due Tuesday with President Vladimir Putin, where the tensions over Ukraine, the Iran nuclear negotiations and Syria will be addressed.During May 16-17 talks in Beijing, America's top diplomat "will meet senior leaders of ...


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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 $-1.795 bln
Exports $1.995 bln
Imports $3.790 bln
WeeklyMay 28, 2015
Reserves $17.494 bln