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Public support for Japan's Abe rebounds after security law: polls TOKYO: Public support for Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has rebounded since his government rammed through unpopular security legislation, according to polls published Monday, as he re-focuses on the struggling economy.In September, parliament in the officially pacifist nation passed the contentious security bills, opening the door for Japanese troops to engage in combat overseas for the first time since the end of World War II.The legislation was met with strong public resistance and pounded the popularity of the conservative Abe, who swept to power in late 2012 on a ticket to kickstart the long-laggard economy.But on Monday, a weekend poll conducted by the leading Nikkei business daily and TV Tokyo found that support for Abe had rebounded eight points from October to 49 percent -- a level last seen this summer as debate raged over the then proposed security legislation.The survey, which polled 1,365 households at the weekend, came as ...

Myanmar's top leaders to hold talks with Suu Kyi YANGON: Myanmar's top leaders will hold talks this week with opposition chief Aung San Suu Kyi, the first since her party's landmark election success, officials said Monday. Uncertainty surrounds the handover of power after Suu Kyi's opposition National League for Democracy swept nearly 80 percent of seats in the November 8 polls, the fairest elections for 25 years.Under Myanmar's complex political system, the incumbent army-backed parliament will remain in power until at least January while ...
Japan offers submarine bid to Australia TOKYO: Japan on Monday submitted a bid for a huge submarine contract with Australia, Japanese officials said, as France and Germany also vie to win the multi-billion dollar contract.Australia has solicited bids for a project worth up to Aus$50 billion (US$36 billion) to replace its current diesel and electric-powered Collins Class submarines, with a Monday deadline to submit final proposals.A Japanese defence ministry official said Tokyo's proposal included plans to build the submarines in Australia, ...
Japan whaling fleet will sail to Antarctic Ocean Tuesday TOKYO: Japan announced it would send a whaling fleet to the Antarctic Tuesday after a one-year suspension, defying international criticism and a UN legal ruling that the "research" expedition is a commercial hunt in disguise.Tokyo has for years come under intense global pressure to stop hunts that opponents decry as inhumane, but the government defends them as an inherent part of Japanese culture. Conservation group Sea Shepherd Australia said it would use its own ship ...
South Korean police ban planned anti-government rally SEOUL: South Korean police on Saturday banned a anti-government demonstration planned in Seoul next week, citing concerns the protest could turn violent, a spokesman said.But activists vowed to push ahead with the rally next Saturday outside City Hall.Police acted under a law allowing them to ban street protests if there is a risk of them turning violent, the spokesman for the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency told AFP.Police warned leaders of activist groups who defy the ...
South Korea bans imports of French poultry SEOUL: South Korea has imposed a ban on imports of French poultry and live birds after the European country reported a bird flu outbreak.The move, announced by South Korea's agriculture ministry on Thursday, came after the European Commission confirmed that birds at a French chicken farm were infected with the virulent H5N1 strain of bird flu.The commission ordered all 32 birds at the farm to be culled and called for close monitoring of neighbouring poultry ...
Australia fire death toll at 3 as damage tops $44mn ADELAIDE: Australians were counting the cost of bushfires Friday, with officials saying a volunteer firefighter died from a suspected heart attack while battling an eastern blaze and a southern inferno razed at least 35 homes.The latest death came after two people were killed Wednesday when an "Armageddon-like" blaze swept through parts of South Australia, leaving insurance claims of Aus$61 million (US$44 million) in its wake.The 48-year-old firefighter collapsed and died after he and New South ...

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Foreign Debt $62.649bn
Per Cap Income $1,512
GDP Growth 4.24%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-2.197 bln
Exports $1.729 bln
Imports $3.926 bln
WeeklyNovember 23, 2015
Reserves $19.713 bln