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Iran says can't afford Ahmadinejad cash handouts TEHRAN: Iran can no longer sustain the billions of dollars needed to pay cash handouts enacted by former president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, a top official said Tuesday, signalling plans to halt them.Since coming to power in 2013, Hassan Rouhani, Ahmadinejad's successor, has sought to put Iran's economy back in order after it plunged into recession and was hit hard by inflation.Tackling the handouts -- a partial replacement after subsidies on staples such as electricity, gas, water and bread were cut -- has proved politically difficult.But Ali Rabii, Rouhani's minister of labour and social welfare, wrote in an open letter that change was needed as the bill for the individual monthly payments of 455,000 rials (about $15) was too high."We should face reality. Reforming the current allowance payment system is a major step toward increased social justice," he said, noting all Iranians receive the money whether rich or poor.Accused of economic mismanagement, ...

Car bomb kills at least 3 in Afghan capital: witness KABUL: A car bomb rammed a convoy of foreign troops near the main airport in Afghanistan's capital on Sunday, killing at least three civilians in the latest attack in the city, police and a witness said.The NATO force in Afghanistan said it could not confirm if any of its vehicles had been hit.There was no immediate claim of responsibility, though Taliban insurgents have launched a wave of attacks around the country since the drawdown of ...
Kerry tells China to reduce tension in disputed South China Sea BEIJING: US Secretary of State John Kerry urged China to take action to reduce tension in the South China Sea and expressed concern about the pace and scope of Beijing's land reclamation in the disputed area.Kerry, speaking at a joint news conference with China's foreign minister, Wang Yi, said China and the United States were committed to finalising a deal that would block paths for Iran to obtain fissile material.Kerry spoke at the start of ...
Indian Maoists take 250 villagers hostage: officials RAIPUR: Indian Maoist rebels took 250 villagers hostage in restive Chhattisgarh just hours before Prime Minister Narendra Modi toured the central state on Saturday, officials said. Guerillas abducted the villagers late Friday in Sukma district, 80 kilometres (50 miles) away from where the right-wing Modi later addressed a public rally, said the state's chief minister."250 villagers have been abducted by the Maoists. We are trying our best to secure their release," Raman Singh said without ...
Nepal warns against post-quake rent increases KATHMANDU: Nepal's government fired a warning shot at landlords Friday, saying any property owner who tries to profit from a devastating quake that left thousands of families homeless would face legal action.The April 25 disaster completely destroyed 288,798 houses nationwide while 254,112 homes were partially damaged, according to the Himalayan country's National Emergency Operation Centre.Large areas of Kathmandu were turned into piles of rubble and almost two weeks on from the 7.8-magnitude quake thousands are ...
Indian PM Modi to visit China next week: Beijing BEIJING: India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi will visit China next week, Beijing said Tuesday, as New Delhi tries to balance its trade deficit with its neighbour despite a simmering border dispute.It is Modi's first visit to China as leader of its Himalayan neighbour -- the world's largest democracy and an Asian geopolitical rival -- following his election victory last year.Modi, of the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), will visit for three days from Thursday ...
Traffic accident kills 18 in western Afghanistan: officials HEART: At least 18 people were killed and three injured on Sunday when a minivan overturned in western Afghanistan, provincial officials said. The accident in the Bala Murghab district of Badghis province was due to the driver's "recklessness", said provincial governor's spokesman Mirwais Mirzakwal, who gave the casualty figure.Sharafudeen Majeedi, chief of staff in the governor's office, confirmed the death toll. The injured were taken to hospital by local people while police and a rescue ...


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Banking Review 2014

Foreign Debt $62.649bn
Per Cap Income $1,512
GDP Growth 4.24%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-2.378 bln
Exports $2.016 bln
Imports $4.394 bln
WeeklyAugust 27, 2015
Reserves $18.509 bln