Market

As overseas markets ‘lockdown’, China exporters look inwards
China, Market, Singapore

As overseas markets ‘lockdown’, China exporters look inwards

China exporters are now left in a crisis as the coronavirus hits its trading partners worldwide leading to cancelled shipments, returned goods and a dearth of new orders - accelerating a long-standing push towards domestic consumption.The world's second-largest economy is stirring back to life after virus cases dwindled from a peak in February, when activity came to a near-halt. But as China’s economy started to recover, lockdowns and restrictions in other countries has forced exporters to focus on domestic markets.Chinese online marketplace Taobao said the number of foreign trading companies opening stores on its domestic-focused platform spiked 160 percent from February to May.And policymakers - who have sought for years to wean the country off cheap exports and government spending in fa...
PEZA reports investment performance amidst the Enhanced Community Quarantine
China, Market, USA

PEZA reports investment performance amidst the Enhanced Community Quarantine

Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) Director General Charito “Ching” Plaza on Tuesday shared the top investment promotion agency’s performance for the first quarter of 2020 amidst the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ).“PEZA’s investments continued to be challenged for the First Quarter of 2020. On top of this issue is still the continuing uncertainty posed by the rationalization of incentives under the pending legislative measures that have created uncertainties. Added to this is the current pandemic caused by the COVID-19 virus, which has caused a tremendous and immediate impact on PEZA’s export manufacturers and exporters of IT-enabled services (BPOs),” stated Plaza.“Before the declaration of the ECQ on March 16, 2020, PEZA’s total approved investments from January to February 20...
China’s Pinduoduo to invest $200m in appliance retailer Gome
Market

China’s Pinduoduo to invest $200m in appliance retailer Gome

Chinese ecommerce platform Pinduoduo announced it will subscribe to US$200 million in convertible bonds issued by Gome Retail Holding, a Beijing-based household appliance and electronics retailer. The move marks Pinduoduo’s first strategic investment after it raised US$1.1 billion in a private share placement in March to enhance its platform’s user experience. According to a statement, the strategic partnership will strengthen Pinduoduo’s position in the household appliances and electronics sector. It will also accelerate its push into the consumer-to-manufacturer space, where Pinduoduo aggregates consumer demand and preferences to help manufacturers customize their products’ designs prior to the manufacturing stage. The bonds will have a coupon rate of 5% per annum and a tenure of three y...
Market

Huawei partners with Vodafone to enter European market

With challenges arising from the upcoming devices lack the full set of Google apps and service, Chinese company Huawei has announced announced a partnership with Vodafone to bring its smartphones to the mobile carrier’s European markets. It includes Oppo, the sister brand of Vivo under Dongguan-based electronics holding company BBK. Under the deal, Oppo’s portfolio of advanced 5G handsets as well as value-for-money models will be sold into the U.K, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, Portugal, Romania and Turkey.Last year, Vodafone has taken back Huawei phones from its U.K. 5G network following the U.S. export ban that stripped Huawei models of certain Android services. However, it can now tap Oppo’s wide range of mobile products in a heated race to sign up 5G customers.  The collaborators wi...
Thai military slashes budgets amid backlash
Market

Thai military slashes budgets amid backlash

Thailand's armed forces have made budget cuts and suspended artillery purchases, as millions of Thais suffering from the adverse economic impact of the coronavirus outbreak await cash handouts from the government. The Thai army was the latest branch of the armed forces to slash its 2020 budget last Wednesday by about 10 billion baht (S$439 million), out of the total of 18 billion baht cut by the Defence Ministry. It also halved its planned 900 million baht procurement of more than 100 Stryker armoured infantry carriers from the United States and suspended purchases of other artillery, army spokesman Winthai Suvaree told a press briefing. "It's a high figure compared with other ministries. All the non-committal budgets have been cut," said Colonel Winthai. The government has asked each mini...
Market

Indonesia asks big internet companies to pay value-added tax on sales of digital products and services

Big internet companies have been asked by the Indonesian government to pay value-added tax on sales of digital products and services from July, a move that other countries may also adopt as they seek to boost revenues following the coronavirus pandemic.Indonesia will impose a 10% VAT on digital products sold by non-resident internet companies with a significant presence in the Indonesian market, including streaming services, applications and digital games, beginning July 1, as per a regulation published on the finance ministry's website.Earlier, Indonesian authorities had said services by streaming platforms like Spotify and Netflix would be among those subject to the new tax.  The COVID-19 pandemic has accentuated a push by governments around the world to tax internet giants, who could se...
Coronavirus: Musk defies orders and reopens Tesla’s California plant
Market, USA

Coronavirus: Musk defies orders and reopens Tesla’s California plant

Tesla has reopened its only US electric car plant in California, despite local orders against manufacturing. On Monday, the company's chief executive Elon Musk tweeted that production had restarted and he would be "on the line with everyone else". US states and local governments are trying to determine the best way to open up after lockdown. Mr Musk previously vowed to move the firm's headquarters out of California if the plant was not allowed to reopen. He has been vocal about the lockdown orders in recent weeks. Mr Musk recently celebrated plans to relax restrictions across the country, writing on Twitter: "FREE AMERICA NOW". He has also dismissed as "dumb" concerns about the coronavirus. While the state has eased restrictions to allow manufacturing, Alameda County, where the Fremo...
Coronavirus lockdown to slash Malyasian retail sales by 61 per cent
Asia, China, Market

Coronavirus lockdown to slash Malyasian retail sales by 61 per cent

The six-week long coronavirus lockdown is expected to slash Malaysian retail sales by 60.7 per cent this month as non-essential stores are forced to close. Retail Group Malaysia, which calculates data on behalf of the Malaysia Retailers Association, estimates that retail sales for the full year will drop by 5.5 per cent, should the government’s Movement Control Order be lifted at the end of this month. It has already been extended from 18 March until 28 April. RGM’s MD Tan Hai Hsin told The Edge that the majority of the nation’s retailers are recording zero sales this month. “This has never happened before in history”. While online sales have surged in Malaysia since the coronavirus struck the nation, and consumers are spending more on food and groceries, categories like jewellery, ...
Indonesia Central Bank Says Yields Bid Too High at Government Bond Auction
Asia, China, Market

Indonesia Central Bank Says Yields Bid Too High at Government Bond Auction

JAKARTA — Bond investors should not bet on Indonesia selling debt at higher yields, as the amount to be raised for the rest of the year will be manageable and capital inflows will push yields lower, central bank governor Perry Warjiyo said on Wednesday. Warjiyo's comments come a day after the government raised 16.62 trillion rupiah ($1.08 billion) at its regular bi-weekly auction, below target, despite total incoming bids of 44.4 trillion rupiah. The government called for a greenshoe option auction on Wednesday for a maximum of 23.8 trillion rupiah, covering for the target it did not meet the previous day. Warjiyo told an online news conference the central bank bought 2.3 trillion rupiah in Tuesday's auction as a non-competitive bidder and may purchase more in the additional auct...
Grab: From business-school project to game-changer in Southeast Asia
Asia, China, Market, Singapore

Grab: From business-school project to game-changer in Southeast Asia

Ride-hailing app brings financial security to drivers and new technology to region SINGAPORE -- In Malaysia, taxi drivers not using meters were once a common sight. And women, fearful of possible assaults, avoided riding alone in taxis. Seeking to transform the taxi industry in their home country, Anthony Tan and Tan Hooi Ling founded the ride-hailing app Grab in 2012. In the eight years since then, Grab has grown into a leading provider of social infrastructure in roughly 340 cities across eight countries in Southeast Asia. The two began developing a plan to start a business when they were students at Harvard Business School. Their idea for a ride-hailing app, for which they found inspiration from a lecture on balancing the pursuit of corporate profits with social contributions,...