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Indonesian president ponders some cabinet picks on anti-graft concern JAKARTA: New Indonesian President Joko Widodo said on Tuesday he was re-evaluating some of his choices for cabinet jobs after an anti-graft agency raised concern about possible problems with some candidates. Widodo, who won a closely fought July election on promises of clean government, will want to avoid the same type of corruption scandals that tainted his predecessor's final term in office. Three of former President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono's ministers were implicated in corruption cases. Widodo, who took office on Monday, submitted a list of candidates to fill his cabinet of 33 ministers to two government watchdogs. The list has not been made public. The Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) considered some candidates on Widodo's list "problematic" or "potentially problematic", Zulkarnain, the KPK's deputy chairman, was quoted as saying in the Jakarta Post newspaper on Tuesday. When asked if he had to re-evaluate any of his nominations after the findings of ...

Former Australian prime minister Gough Whitlam dead at 98 SYDNEY: Former Australian prime minister Gough Whitlam, a towering figure who led the nation through a period of massive change and remains the country's only leader to be sacked, died Tuesday aged 98."A loving and generous father, he was a source of inspiration to us and our families and for millions of Australians," said his children Antony, Nicholas, Stephen and Catherine in announcing his death.Conservative Prime Minister Tony Abbott called the Labor stalwart "a giant ...
Kerry in Indonesia seeks Asian support against Islamic State JAKARTA: US Secretary of State John Kerry met leaders from the Asia Pacific region in Indonesia on Monday, seeking more help in the U.S.-led effort against Islamic State in the Middle East.In a one-day stop in Jakarta for the inauguration of Indonesian President Joko Widodo, Kerry scheduled bilateral meetings with the new leader of the world's largest Muslim population, the prime ministers of neighbouring Malaysia and Singapore, the Sultan of Brunei, Australia's prime minister and ...
Japan PM accepted METI min Obuchi's resignation TOKYO: Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has accepted the resignation of trade and industry minister Yuko Obuchi, Japan's top government spokesman said on Monday. Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga was speaking at a regular press conference after Obuchi announced she was stepping down following allegations that her support groups had misused political funds. Copyright Reuters, 2014 ...
South Korea warns North against 'reckless provocation' SEOUL: South Korea warned North Korea on Monday against further "reckless" provocations following a series of minor border skirmishes that have heightened military tensions ahead of planned high-level talks.Troops from both sides exchanged small arms fire on Sunday after South Korean troops fired warning shots at a North Korean patrol moving towards the military demarcation line that divides the peninsula."We sternly warn North Korea against reckless military provocations ... that would raise military tensions," Defence ...
South Korea concert victims' families call for leniency SEOUL: The families of 16 people who died after falling through a ventilation shaft at a South Korean open-air concert asked for leniency on Monday for event organisers despite fresh concerns about safety six months after a ferry disaster. Opposition lawmakers chided the government for a lack of substantive improvements in safety despite repeated pledges to tighten standards, with one member of parliament saying: "The Republic of Korea has become the republic of disasters". "The ...
Japan industry minister resigns over make-up scandal TOKYO: Japan's high-profile and telegenic industry minister on Monday resigned over claims she misused political funds, including to buy both votes and make-up, dealing a blow to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's gender reform drive.Yuko Obuchi told a press conference carried live on multiple television channels that parliamentary business had been stalled because of questions over her spending."It is not permissible for me as Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry to have economy and energy policies ...

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Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-2.807 bln
Exports $1.911 bln
Imports $4.718 bln
WeeklyOctober 20, 2014
Reserves $13.436 bln