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South Korea, US forces to start massive military landing drill SEOUL: South Korea and the United States will launch a massive landing drill next week, the climax of an ongoing joint military exercise which North Korea views as an invasion rehearsal.The amphibious drill will start March 28 and run until April 1 at the port of Pohang, some 360 kilometers (223 miles) south of Seoul, the US-South Korea Combined Forces Command said in a statement.It will include some 1,000 US Marines, three US amphibious ships and 3,000 South Koreans, Yonhap news agency said. US sailors and marines from the Bonhomme Richard Amphibious Ready Group and the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) based in Okinawa, Japan, are also participating in the drill, known as Ssangyong in South Korea and the Korean Marine Exchange Program (KMEP) in the United States."KMEP is designed to strengthen our interoperability in amphibious operations between the US and ROK (South Korea) Forces, which contributes to the security ...

Japan, China in security talks after 4-year break TOKYO: Japan and China held security talks Thursday after a four-year hiatus because of simmering territorial tensions, in a meeting expected to touch on the flashpoint issue of maritime crisis management, officials and reports said.The first such dialogue between the two Asian rivals since January 2011 was held at Japan's foreign ministry in Tokyo, a government official said, in the latest sign of a hastening thaw in once-frozen relations.The talks involved top officials from each ...
Aid starts flowing to Vanuatu as remote islands plead for help TANNA: Aid was due to reach some of cyclone-hit Vanuatu's worst affected islands Wednesday but others remained isolated, with flights over the Pacific nation showing desperate villagers spelling out the letter "H" for help.Relief agencies are battling tough conditions and logistical challenges in the sprawling archipelago with a lack of landing strips and deep water ports hampering their efforts to reach distant islands and get a better grip on the full scale of the disaster.Vanuatu ...
China, Japan, South Korea to hold first FM talks in three years TOKYO: China, Japan and South Korea will this week hold the first meeting of their foreign ministers for three years, Tokyo said Tuesday, the latest sign of a gradual thaw in East Asian relations.The three men will meet in Seoul on Saturday, a Japanese foreign ministry official said."Cooperation among the three countries is important for Japan and we naturally hope this foreign ministers' meeting will lead to a summit in the future," the official said.He ...
China probes top executive of state energy giant CNPC SHANGHAI: A top executive of China National Petroleum Corp, the country's biggest energy company, has been put under investigation, authorities said as the Communist Party's anti-corruption drive targets more state firms.CNPC general manager Liao Yongyuan is being investigated by the ruling party's Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI) for "severe violations of discipline and law", the watchdog said in a statement late Monday.It gave no details, but the phrase typically refers to official corruption.Liao was ...
Aid workers struggle with scale of Vanuatu disaster PORT VILA: Aid agencies said on Monday conditions in cyclone-ravaged Vanuatu were among the most challenging they have ever faced with fears of disease rife, as the Pacific nation's shocked president said climate change was partly to blame for the devastation.Relief flights continued arriving in the battered capital Port Vila after Severe Tropical Cyclone Pam tore through on Friday night packing wind gusts of up to 320 kilometres (200 miles) an hour.But workers on the ...
Vanuatu president urges world help to rebuild 'everything' SENDAI: The president of cyclone-lashed Vanuatu said on Monday his island nation needs the world's help to rebuild "everything" after it was smashed by one of the most powerful storms ever recorded."The humanitarian need is immediate, we need it right now," Baldwin Lonsdale told AFP as he readied to fly home from a disaster conference in northern Japan. "In the long term we need the financial support, assistance, to start rebuilding our infrastructure -- everything, ...

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Banking Review 2014


Annual2013/14
Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
MonthlyMarch
Trade Balance $-1.586 bln
Exports $1.932 bln
Imports $3.518 bln
WeeklyApril 30, 2015
Reserves $17.717 bln