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Super typhoon Mangkhut heads for the Philippines, Taiwan and Hong Kong

Concerns growing that intense storm could damage Asian supply chains

The super typhoon is expected to affect a wide swath of Asia.   © JTWC/Reuters

TOKYO -- A super typhoon is heading for the Philippines, Taiwan and Hong Kong, with maximum sustained winds of 240kph that many in the region fear could bring significant damage to businesses and infrastructure in the affected areas.

The typhoon, named Mangkhut, is classified by the Hong Kong Observatory as a super typhoon, which have maximum sustained winds of over 185kph. In 2013, Super Typhoon Haiyan killed more than 6,300 people.

Mangkhut, developing as another tropical storm, Barijat, approaches Hong Kong, is forming in the western North Pacific ocean and is expected to intensify in the next few days.

The super typhoon is expected to hit the farming areas of the northern Philippines by Saturday, according to the U.S. Joint Typhoon Warning Center. It will strike southern Taiwan and Hong Kong over the weekend.

The storm may affect Asian businesses if it damages vital supply chains and infrastructure.

According to the South China Morning Post, Hong Kong-based airlines Cathay Pacific and Cathay Dragon on Tuesday announced they will waive charges for rebooking or re-routing tickets for flights arriving at or departing from Hong Kong on Sunday and Monday, Sept. 16 and 17.

Only tickets issued worldwide on or before Tuesday would be eligible for the waiver.

Hong Kong Airlines is offering a similar arrangement, applying to flights from Sept. 16 to 18.

"An estimated 1.2 hectares of farms planted to rice and corn which are about to be harvested may be affected," the Philippines' Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Pinol wrote on his social media account on Tuesday.

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