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US refineries strike to widen as walkouts planned at BP plants HOUSTON: A strike by US refinery workers appears set to widen late Saturday night to 11 plants as walkouts have been scheduled at BP Plc refineries in Indiana and Ohio, a BP spokesman said on Friday night, the sixth day of the strike.Stoppages by hourly workers represented by the United Steelworkers union (USW) are scheduled to begin at 11:59 p.m. local time on Saturday at BP's Whiting, Indiana, and Toledo, Ohio, refineries. The Ohio refinery is a joint venture with Husky Energy.Currently, about 4,000 USW-represented workers are on strike at nine plants in California, Kentucky and Texas, including seven refineries that account for 10 percent of US refining capacity. The strike is the biggest in the refinery sector since 1980.Among other requests, the union is seeking a tighter policy to prevent workplace fatigue, which federal officials have tied to refinery accidents. The union is also seeking the assignment of work ...

US invites China's Xi, Japan's Abe for state visits WASHINGTON: The United States has invited the leaders of China and Japan for prestigious state visits, President Barack Obama's top security adviser said Friday, signaling a deepening of his "pivot to Asia.""In furtherance of our relationships throughout this vital region, I'm pleased to announce today that we have invited Prime Minister (Shinzo) Abe of Japan and President Xi Jinping of China for state visits," said National Security Adviser Susan Rice.Rice also said that President Joko ...
UN threatens warring sides in Mali with sanctions UNITED NATIONS: The UN Security Council on Friday urged rebels and pro-government fighters in restive northern Mali to resume peace talks in Algeria "without delay," warning of "targeted sanctions" if hostilities continue. "The Security Council urges the parties to seize the historic opportunity offered by the inter-Malian negotiation process in Algiers, in which all neighboring countries and relevant regional and international partners are involved, to support lasting peace in Mali," the Council said in a ...
Mexico maternity blast's death toll rises to five MEXICO CITY: The death toll from a gas explosion that leveled a Mexico City maternity hospital rose to five on Friday after a stretcher-bearer who saved several babies succumbed to his injuries."I lament the death of stretcher-bearer Jose Luis Tinoco. The city recognizes his dedication and courage," Mayor Miguel Angel Mancera wrote on Twitter, expressing his condolences to the man's family.The city government said in a statement that Tinoco, 27, helped to "evacuate several infants ...
US slaps Big 4 accountancies over China reporting WASHINGTON: US market regulators slapped sanctions Friday on the Big Four global accounting firms over their 2012 refusal to turn over documents on Chinese companies under investigation.The US Securities and Exchange Commission said that it had officially censured China-based units of the four, which agreed to undertake specific measures to better respond to SEC requests.To settle the long-running case, which also pitted the SEC against Chinese government secrecy rules, the four also agreed to pay ...
Haiti police fire rubber bullets at gas price demo PORT-AU-PRINCE: Police fired tear gas and rubber bullets at hundreds of demonstrators in violent clashes Thursday in the Haitian capital, leaving six student protesters wounded.It was the second protest this week in Port-au-Prince to demand lower oil prices, in an impoverished country also struggling with political uncertainty.Haiti recently announced a 30 US cent price reduction for a gallon of gas (3.8 liters), which sells for just over $4 in the country, but protesters said that ...
UN urges more regional military coordination against Boko Haram UNITED NATIONS: The United Nations Security Council urged West and Central African countries on Thursday to improve regional military coordination to more effectively combat Boko Haram militants in northern Nigeria. Boko Haram has become the main security threat facing Nigeria, Africa's biggest economy and top oil producer, and increasingly threatens neighboring countries.The African Union (AU) has authorized a force of 7,500 troops from Nigeria, Chad, Cameroon, Niger and Benin to fight the militants. In a ...


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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 $-1.703 bln
Exports $2.156 bln
Imports $3.859 bln
WeeklyFebruary 26, 2015
Reserves $15.944 bln