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Nikkei Markets

SINGAPORE PRESS: News Headlines On Monday, January 15

By Singapore Newsroom
Nikkei Markets
SINGAPORE (Jan 15) -- Heres a roundup of local news:

*Singapore charges 3 more suspects in Shell refinery oil heist

A Singapore court on Saturday charged three men suspected of involvement in large-scale oil theft at Shells biggest refinery, days after bringing charges against 11 under an extensive probe by authorities in the city state. Singapore authorities have been conducting extensive investigations after Shell first contacted them in August 2017 about theft at its Pulau Bukom industrial site that sits just south of the countrys main island. Police have seized millions of dollars in cash and a small tanker in the sting operation involving simultaneous raids across Singapore. - Reuters

*Singapore smashes bunker sales volumes in 2017, third straight record year

Singapore posted record sales volumes of marine fuels for the third straight year in 2017, even as the city state revamped the market last year leading to stiff competition and margin erosion. Singapore last year sold an all-time high 50.6 million tons of marine fuels, a 4.2 percent increase over the 48.6 million tons sold in 2016, the latest official data from the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore showed. - Reuters

*Maritime sector road map to create S$4.5 billion in value-add, make over 5,000 new jobs

A new plan has been mapped out to set the course for Singapore's maritime industry over the next decade. The Sea Transport Industry Transformation Map aims to grow the industry's real value-add by S$4.5 billion and create over 5,000 good jobs by 2025. It will build on existing strategies to develop the Singapore port and strengthen its international maritime center - with the vision for Singapore to become a global maritime hub for connectivity, innovation and talent, Senior Minister of State for Transport Lam Pin Min said. - The Straits Times

*These Are the Taxes Singapore Could Hike in Next Month's Budget

Speculation is buzzing that the Singapore government will raise the goods and services tax in its Feb. 19 budget rollout. But GST probably wont be the whole story. Authorities have several other options to increase taxes, or at least signal that theyre needed in the coming years, as the city state grapples with rising health and retirement costs as the population ages rapidly. - Bloomberg News

*Israel to ease dual-listing with Hong Kong, Singapore, Toronto

The Israel Securities Authority said on Sunday it approved a plan to allow Israeli companies traded in Singapore, Hong Kong and Toronto to easily dual-list on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange. These are markets whose regulatory level is as high as in Israel and dual-listing could encouraging trade on TASE, ISA Chairman Shmuel Hauser said. In 2000, the dual-listing program was launched for Israeli companies traded in New York and London and since then, more than 60 companies have dual-listed. - Reuters

*Credit Suisse Cautions on Outlook for Singapore's Surging REITs

Credit Suisse Group AG warned that gains for Singapores real estate investment trusts may be limited this year after a surge in prices in 2017 left valuations looking stretched. Kum Soek Ching, head of Southeast Asia research in the firms private banking operation, pointed to declines in the extra yield from the securities versus risk-free rates from Singapore government bonds. For this year, the REITs may return 3.4 percentage points over a 10-year bond, less than the historical average of 3.7 percentage points, Kum wrote in a note. The Straits Times Real Estate Investment Trust Index gave a 28 percent total return last year as funds flowed into Singapore and the outlook brightened for property. Though prospects remain good, with rents improving as demand recovers and supply eases, investors may want to wait for more attractive entry levels, the analyst said. - Bloomberg News

*Semipublic fund to back Japan bid for Malaysia-Singapore rail line

The government will help a Japanese corporate consortium win a bid for a high-speed rail project straddling Malaysia and Singapore, with plans to provide financial support through a public-private fund. The Malaysian and Singaporean governments started a bidding process last month for the project, which sets out to build a 350km rail line enabling people to travel between Kuala Lumpur and Singapore in 90 minutes. The line is slated to open in 2026. - Nikkei Asian Review

*Will ThaiBev swap its FCL shares for Fraser & Neave?

The potential exercise could involve swapping its 28% stake in FCL for a 60% stake in F&N. Thai Beverage Public Company Limited previously guided that the long-awaited swap to consolidate Thai conglomerate TCC's stake in Fraser & Neave under ThaiBev would be completed by the end of 2017. However, the company missed this target. According to Credit Suisse, through the acquisition of F&N by ThaiBev and TCC in 2012 and 2013 and then the subsequent listing of Frasers Centrepoint in 2014, ThaiBev holds a 28% stake in both F&N and FCL whilst TCC holds a 59% stake in both. - Singapore Business Review
- By Singapore Newsroom;; +65 6331 6250
- Edited by Glen Nicol Perkinson
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- Copyright (c) 2018 Nikkei NewsRise Asia Pte. Ltd.

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