Singapore

Pakistan bars Afghan goods, but exports freely into Afghanistan
Singapore

Pakistan bars Afghan goods, but exports freely into Afghanistan

Afghan traders and merchants on Thursday voiced their concerns about Pakistani products coming into Afghanistan flow as usual, but Afghan business people still not being able to export goods to the Pakistani ports.Merchants called on the Afghanistan government to take action and raise the issue of the barring of Afghan exports with the Pakistani government.“Our trucks have been stopped in Torkham for the past three months, we don’t know what to do, the products are on the verge of destruction,” said Hejratullah Hamdard, a merchant.“We don’t know when the government will take reciprocal action against Pakistan,” said Navid, a merchant.This comes as the harvest of vegetable and fresh fruits are at their peak in Afghanistan, and the Afghan traders are losing millions of dollars because of the...
China’s foreigner ban leaves global businesses in limbo
Singapore

China’s foreigner ban leaves global businesses in limbo

Foreign nationals who live in China or planned to visit say they have been left in limbo as a result of the coronavirus outbreak, with many unsure of when they can return to work or get a refund for their trip.China imposed a travel ban on most foreigners entering the country in March as the outbreak gathered pace overseas.Even those with valid residence or work permits, or who run businesses, have been shut out, and there was further doubt about when the restrictions would be lifted after a new cluster of infections was detected in Beijing over the weekend.Jessie Lim, the founder of Frequency Advertising & Event, has been stranded in Singapore since travelling there in January."(The ban) really shocked me," she said, adding that her Chengdu-based firm earned nothing in the first three...
First national standard on e-commerce transactions launched in Singapore
Singapore

First national standard on e-commerce transactions launched in Singapore

As coronavirus prompts everyone to go online, Singapore launched its first standard on e-commerce transactions formulated to help businesses improve their online retail processes and policies.It covers e-commerce transactions from pre- to post-purchase activities and will serve as a practical reference for e-retailers and online intermediaries such as e-marketplaces.“The launch of the new standard - Technical Reference 76 (TR 76) - will help build trust and transparency in online transactions”, Enterprise Singapore (ESG) and the Singapore Standards Council said on Friday.Amid the coronavirus outbreak, e-commerce transactions have shot up with online retail sales generating an estimated 17.8% of total retail turnover in April, up from 5.5% in January.In comparison, online sales accounted fo...
Singapore start-ups can now apply to Fortitude Budget’s $285 million fund
Singapore

Singapore start-ups can now apply to Fortitude Budget’s $285 million fund

Promising start-ups in Singapore can now apply for special funding earmarked for them in the Fortitude Budget, to help them sustain innovation, gain access to credit, and bridge the financing gap they face amid the Covid-19 pandemic.The Special Situation Fund for Start-ups (SSFS) will be administered by EDBI, the corporate investment arm of Economic Development Board, and Seeds Capital, the investment arm of Enterprise Singapore, said both organizations in a joint statement on Friday.Under the scheme, EDBI and Seeds Capital will invest in selected start-ups with private sector co-investors in a one-to-one ratio.The SSFS will support early to late-stage innovative start-ups, though EDBI will focus on late-stage start-ups with larger funding needs and a wider employment base, while Seeds Cap...
Europe should give up overdependence on China, consider India as alternative: Experts
Singapore

Europe should give up overdependence on China, consider India as alternative: Experts

Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) and experts on Thursday said that the European Union that has been hit hard economically due to Wuhan-originated coronavirus and that India being a diplomatic nation provides a conducive atmosphere for the European investors.  “The countries were relying too much on China and they needed to look for other markets,” Thierry Mariani, a Member of the European Parliament and Former Minister of State for Transport of France said at a webinar.The event was organized by the Economic Development Foundation, Istanbul (IKV), a non-governmental research organization specialized on the EU and Turkey-EU relations.Mariani further said: "For me, this new Silk Road is just one opportunity but it cannot be said that it is the only opportunity. If we want to have pe...
Eligible Singaporeans to receive care and support package cash payments from June 18: MOF
Singapore

Eligible Singaporeans to receive care and support package cash payments from June 18: MOF

Singapore’s Ministry of Finance on Thursday announced that “eligible” Singaporeans will receive cash from June 18 as part of the the Care and Support Package.“Those eligible will receive cash payments of S$300 or S$600 via PayNow on June 18”, the Ministry said.Citizens who do not have PayNow linked to their NRIC by June 11 but have previously provided their bank account details for receiving Government payouts will receive the cash on June 25 via direct bank crediting, with the rest receiving the payments via cheque between Jun 30 and Jul 9.In addition, parents with at least one Singaporean child aged 20 and below in 2020 will each receive an extra S$300.Singaporeans aged 50 and above in 2020 will each receive an extra S$100 cash, in place of the earlier announced PAssion Card top-up."As p...
Thailand had no foreign tourists in April as borders closed
Singapore

Thailand had no foreign tourists in April as borders closed

Thailand recorded zero foreign tourists or related spending in April after it closed borders and banned most incoming international flights to fight the novel coronavirus outbreak.There were almost 3.2 million arrivals in the same month last year, generating receipts of 146 billion baht (S$6.5 billion).Visitors stranded in the country because of lockdowns around the world were not counted in the numbers, the Tourism Ministry noted in data released on Friday.Stretching back to the 1990s, the latest report is the first to show a slump to zero.Incoming international flights are banned through June 30 and it remains unclear whether visitors will be willing or able to rush back when curbs are lifted.The state planning agency predicts the number of foreign arrivals will plunge to 12.7 million th...
Cashback deals and gifts might presage damaging price war: China’s auto experts
Singapore

Cashback deals and gifts might presage damaging price war: China’s auto experts

After spending the whole of February and March in lockdown, China's auto dealerships are now offering attractive cashback offers, up to 10 free oil changes, and generous prepaid gasoline cards to woo customers out and about.And even though they are getting the job done, the industry remains worried that any momentum from demand that was locked up in February and March is expected to diminish by the end of May.After that, the outlook for consumer spending is bleak as the coronavirus pandemic continues to hammer the global economy, including China's exports.Moreover, industry executives believe the generous deals currently being offered to customers are priming the market for a return to price wars.Feng Xingya, general manager of state-owned automaker GAC which has partnerships with Toyota a...
As overseas markets ‘lockdown’, China exporters look inwards
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...
Hong Kong’s pro-Beijing politicians say national security law good for business
Singapore

Hong Kong’s pro-Beijing politicians say national security law good for business

In a bid to reduce tension in the market, Hong Kong’s pro-Beijing politicians on Saturday rubbished claims that China’s proposed national security legislation would harm the Asian financial hub’s economy, saying it would instead boost investor sentiment.The security legislation aims to tackle secession, subversion, terrorism, and foreign interference and could see mainland intelligence agencies set up bases in Hong Kong, raising fears of direct law enforcement.U.S. government officials have said the legislation would end the Chinese-ruled city’s autonomy and would be bad for both Hong Kong’s and China’s economies. They said it could jeopardize the territory’s special status in U.S. law, which has helped it maintain its position as a global financial centre.Bankers and headhunters said it c...