07242016Sun
Last update: Sun, 24 Jul 2016 12am

South Asia

World - South Asia

India clears deal to buy 145 artillery guns from BAE Systems NEW DELHI: India's defence procurement agency has cleared a proposal to buy 145 M777 Ultra Lightweight Howitzer artillery guns from BAE Systems in a deal worth an estimated $750 million, a defence ministry source said on Saturday. Under the deal, 120 of the 145 guns will be assembled in India, said the source, who asked not to be identified in line with defence ministry rules.Prime Minister Narendra Modi wants to upgrade the country's military hardware by replenishing its range of artillery weapons after years of delays in ordering new equipment.But Modi wants deals with foreign companies to include the setting up of factories and plants in India to boost the local industry.BAE said in February it had chosen Indian conglomerate Mahindra Group to build a plant for the assembly of Howitzer artillery guns it hopes to sell to India.The source said the proposal would soon be communicated to the United ...

World - South Asia

Sri Lanka enacts right to information bill after successive delays COLOMBO: Sri Lanka's parliament enacted a right to information bill on Friday, in a move to curb corruption and provide timely information to the public. The bill was originally proposed in 1996, but was delayed by successive governments citing national security while the country was at war with Tamil rebels until 2009. Copyright Reuters, 2016 ...

World - South Asia

China says debt-for-equity programme not finalised, will exclude ‘zombie firms’ BEIJING: China's ability to boost economic growth is vital for lowering debt levels, a banking regulator official said on Thursday.Banks' bad loan ratios are rising but are still at relatively low levels, the official said, adding that banks have written off 2 trillion yuan ($304 billion) worth of bad loans in the past three years.A debt-for-equity swap programme that would help ease company's debt burdens and let banks convert bad loans must follow market and ...

World - South Asia

Myanmar's Suu Kyi to visit troubled diaspora in Thailand BANGKOK: Myanmar's Aung San Suu Kyi arrives Thursday in Thailand where she is expected to be garlanded by her adoring compatriots, hundreds of thousands of whom have sought work and sanctuary from war across the border.It is Suu Kyi's highest profile overseas visit since her pro-democracy party took power in April, ending nearly half a century of military domination.Her government has seeded hopes for a new era of prosperity that could eventually convince the army ...

World - South Asia

India PM Modi heads to Uzbekistan to woo China's Xi NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi will meet Chinese President Xi Jinping this week on the sidelines of a summit in Uzbekistan, the Indian foreign ministry said Wednesday, seeking China's backing for India's entry into a nuclear trade group.India wants to become a member of the 48-nation Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) to get better access to low-cost, clean nuclear energy -- important for its economic growth.While several countries including the United States and France have ...

World - South Asia

Singapore to include Chinese yuan investments in foreign reserves SINGAPORE: Singapore's central bank said Wednesday it will make its financial investments in the yuan part of its official foreign reserves from June, reflecting the Chinese currency's increasing international acceptance.The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) said its decision "recognises the steady and calibrated liberalisation of China's financial markets, and the growing acceptance of (yuan) assets in the global portfolio of institutional investors".MAS has been making financial investments in the yuan, or renminbi, since 2012, under ...

World - South Asia

Lightning kills at least 93 as monsoon sweeps India NEW DELHI: At least 93 people have been struck by lightning and killed in India over the past two days, disaster management officials said Wednesday, as annual monsoon rains swept the country.Lightning strikes are relatively common in India during the June-October monsoon, which hit the southern coast earlier this month, but this week's toll is particularly high.Most deaths occurred in the eastern state of Bihar, where an overnight storm killed at least 56 people and ...