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  • Japan trading houses revamping resource strategies

    TOKYO -- After losing tons of money through massive bets on overseas resource assets, Japan's trading behemoths are now working to overhaul their natural resource businesses as a whole.Collapsing prices for oil, metals and other commodities have for

    May 31, 2016 04:00 pm JST
  • Virgin Australia says China's HNA Aviation to buy major stake

    SYDNEY (Reuters) -- Virgin Australia on Tuesday said China's HNA Aviation group will buy up to a fifth of the airline to tap into the rapidly growing tourism market between the two countries.Virgin said HNA Aviation Group, the largest private opera

    May 31, 2016 11:03 am JST
  • Future of Asia

    Bring down 'behind the border' barriers -- New Zealand commerce minister

    TOKYO -- Asia-Pacific nations should lower "behind the border" barriers and free up flows of people, services, capital and ideas, according to Paul Goldsmith, New Zealand's minister of commerce and consumer affairs.Goldsmith on Monday told a confere

    May 30, 2016 04:47 pm JST
  • Commodities eye

    Iron ore heads down again -- Lower for longer?

    SINGAPORE -- The world's biggest iron ore miners believe that the recent rally in the price of the commodity will not last, because, while demand remains mostly flat, they have committed to maintaining or increasing their supply.The price of iron or

    May 30, 2016 04:15 pm JST
  • Dili draws a line in the sand over sea boundaries

    SINGAPORE -- Rodrigo Duterte's clear win in the Philippines' presidential election will likely mean a new round of diplomacy over territorial disputes with Beijing in the South China Sea, with the president-elect saying that he will take a softer li

    May 27, 2016 09:30 pm JST
  • Companies in focus: Pan-Asian budget carrier alliance may portend an industry shake-up

    SINGAPORE Never before have Southeast Asia's cities been so well-connected. Credit the expanding aviation industry, which seems to keep giving the region one new budget airline after another.But the skies have grown crowded and profits are being pin

    May 26, 2016 12:00 pm JST
  • James Stavridis: Submarines are a new facet of Asia's arms race

    The ocean depths of the Pacific are becoming crowded in the latest stage of Asia's arms race, as the region's military powers rapidly increase their submarine fleets and deploy the latest technology.Australia's decision to buy 12 highly advanced die

    May 26, 2016 12:00 pm JST
  • Dirou and Reid: Lending reforms are breathing life into small business in Pacific island states

    Small and medium-size enterprises in Pacific island states often find it difficult to get credit. Financial institutions in the region tend to view lending to smaller businesses as risky because without fixed assets, such as land and buildings, to s

    May 26, 2016 12:00 pm JST
  • Asia's taste for sea cucumbers roils South Pacific

    AUCKLAND, New Zealand -- A race to harvest one of the world's oddest looking marine delicacies is causing concern about environmental damage inflicted in the South Pacific.Soaring demand for the sea cucumber, a seabed dwelling invertebrate also know

    May 25, 2016 07:45 pm JST
  • Drought squeezing farm output, economies in Asia, Oceania

    JAKARTA -- Bone-dry conditions are ravaging agricultural production in parts of Asia and Oceania, stunting growth in countries where farm goods are a major economic driver.In Vietnam, in the grip of its worst dry spell in a century, rice output has

    May 23, 2016 07:00 pm JST
  • A new therapy for Parkinson's disease heralds a new era in medicine

    TOKYO Stem cells have enormous promise in regenerative medicine, with the potential to treat a range of injuries and diseases. The main roadblock has been ethical concerns regarding the use of human embryonic tissue. But now, new technologies are st

    May 19, 2016 12:00 pm JST
  • The gospel according to Australia's opinion polls

    MELBOURNE -- A strange turbulence has permeated Australian politics since 2010. In Canberra, a normally sleepy capital where stability has historically reigned, three sitting prime ministers have been unceremoniously overthrown, not by the public, b

    May 17, 2016 05:30 pm JST
  • Asian shares recover after Apple, oil boost Wall St

    TOKYO (Reuters) -- Asian shares recovered from two-month lows on Tuesday after a rebound in technology giant Apple Corp and oil price gains boosted Wall Street.MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.4 percent, extending th

    May 17, 2016 12:15 pm JST
  • Australia defers backpacker tax hike after rural opposition

    SYDNEY (Reuters) -- Australia will review a planned tax hike for foreign travellers who work in the country, following complaints from farmers in the lead up to a federal election that their supply of "backpacker labour" at harvest times may dry up.

    May 17, 2016 11:46 am JST
  • Commentary

    James Stavridis -- Asia's arms race dives underwater

    The ocean depths of the Pacific are becoming crowded in the latest stage of Asia's arms race, as the region's military powers rapidly increase their submarine fleets and deploy the very latest technology.Australia's decision to buy 12 highly advance

    May 16, 2016 03:20 pm JST
  • Australia's Starpharma, Ansell to supply anti-Zika condoms for Olympics

    SYDNEY (Reuters) -- Australian pharmaceutical company Starpharma Holdings Ltd said it is teaming up with world No. 2 condom maker Ansell Ltd to supply Zika virus-proof condoms to the Australian Olympic team ahead of the 2016 Rio de Janeiro games.Sta

    May 16, 2016 10:35 am JST
  • NZ ocean sanctuary plan faces legal challenges

    AUCKLAND, New Zealand -- A legal battle has broken out in New Zealand over the government's proposal to create a Pacific Ocean sanctuary to preserve one of the world's most pristine and unique environments.The proposed 620,000 square kilometer Kerma

    May 14, 2016 02:00 am JST
  • Market expects further Australian rate cut

    SYDNEY -- Australian interest rates are predicted to fall further to new record lows this year, after the central bank slashed its forecasts for inflation.The Reserve Bank of Australia on May 3 surprised markets by cutting official interest rates to

    May 13, 2016 07:00 pm JST
  • Tax probes widen amid latest Panama Papers revelations

    TOKYO -- New details on shell companies in the Panama Papers are stirring further investigation into tax avoidance worldwide as stronger links to major banks and political figures are found.The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists p

    May 13, 2016 01:00 pm JST
  • Israel capitalizes on its technology chops to build up trade with Asia

    TOKYO Israel is leveraging its technological prowess in communications, defense and cybersecurity to build closer economic ties with Asia.The Middle Eastern nation is looking to reinvigorate its lackluster economy, whose growth rate is hovering be

    May 12, 2016 12:00 pm JST