Osaka, Jun 27 (AP/UNB) — A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman in Beijing says China intends to defend itself against further U.S. moves to penalize it due to trade friction.
Geng Shuang says threats by President Donald Trump to impose more tariffs on Chinese exports "won't work on us because the Chinese people don't believe in heresy and are not afraid of pressure."
Geng made the comments ahead of Trump's arrival in Osaka for a G-20 summit. Trump and Xi are due to meet on the sidelines of the two-day meeting on Saturday.
The meeting, more than a month after trade talks between the U.S. and China foundered, has raised hopes the two sides might manage to bridge some differences and cool tensions that led them to raise tariffs on billions of dollars of each other's products.
Japan's top government spokesman is responding to President Donald Trump's criticism that the U.S.-Japan security pact is one-sided.
Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga says their obligations under the treaty are not identical but balanced. He says "It is irrelevant to say the treaty is one-sided."
Trump told U.S. media that the U.S.-Japan pact unfairly puts burden on Washington.
Suga declined to say if Prime Minister Shinzo Abe planned to correct Trump when they hold talks during the Group of 20 Summit in Osaka.
About 50,000 American troops under the pact are hosted by Japan, whose neighbors include Russia, China and North Korea.
Environmental activists and local residents in Kobe have protested and raised an inflatable depicting Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, urging an end to funding for coal-fired power plants.
The protesters Thursday were taking aim at Abe's efforts to promote such projects. They also want more aggressive efforts by the Japanese government to help curb climate change.
The coalition of more than 50 nongovernment groups, including Kiko Network and Friends of the Earth, said in a statement that Japan is one of the largest funders of coal fired-power stations overseas. It ramped up use of coal-fired generators inside Japan after most nuclear power plants were idled after the 2011 nuclear disaster in Fukushima.
The activists staged their protest outside a coal-fired power plant in the port city.
While prospects for detente in the trade war between the world's two largest economies are a major preoccupation ahead of the two days of G-20 meetings that begin Friday, many participating are calling for a broader perspective in tackling global crises.
The president of the European Union Council, Donald Tusk, told Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Thursday: "This will be a difficult G-20. There are global challenges to be met. We need to step up to avoid the climate threats."
Tusk said that other pressing issues include reforming the World Trade Organization and dealing with international tensions over Iran.
Japanese media reported that the Tusk and Abe made progress toward an agreement on loosening EU restrictions on exports of farm products imposed after a 2011 nuclear accident in northeastern Fukushima prefecture.
Chinese President Xi Jinping and other world leaders are gathering in Osaka for a summit of the Group of 20 major economies that is likely to be overshadowed by both trade and geopolitical tensions.
President Donald Trump was due to arrive later Thursday, and to meet with Xi on Saturday as the G-20 meetings conclude.
Xi was also expected to hold talks with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, seeking a breakthrough after years of strain over territorial disputes. It is his first visit to Japan since he became communist China's top leader in 2013.
Xi's visit to North Korea last week raised hopes for some movement in the impasse with the U.S. over Pyongyang's nuclear program. Trump is due to visit South Korea after leaving Japan.
Osaka, Jun 27 (AP/UNB) — Trade and geopolitical tensions, and the looming threat of climate change, are on the agenda as Chinese President Xi Jinping and other world leaders gather in Osaka, Japan, for a summit of the Group of 20 major economies.
While prospects for detente in the trade war between the United States and China are in the spotlight, many participating are calling for a broader perspective in tackling global crises.
"This will be a difficult G-20, there are global challenges to be met, we need to step up to avoid the climate threats, ... reform the World Trade Organization and prepare for the digital revolution," Donald Tusk, president of the European Union Council, said at a meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.
The summit comes at a time of growing international tensions, for example, over Iran's nuclear deal and trade between the United States and China.
President Donald Trump was due to arrive later Thursday, and to meet with Xi on Saturday as the G-20 meetings conclude.
Xi was also expected to hold talks with Abe, seeking a breakthrough after years of strain over territorial disputes. It is his first visit to Japan since he became China's top leader in 2013.
A visit by Xi to North Korea last week raised hopes for some movement in the impasse with the U.S. over the North's nuclear program. Trump also is due to visit South Korea after leaving Japan, raising speculation there may be more news on Korean issues during his Asian travels.
Trump has at times found himself at odds with other leaders in such international events, particularly on issues such as Iran, climate change and trade.
Abe has sought to make the Osaka summit a landmark for progress on environmental issues, including climate change. French President Emmanuel Macron reinforced that message on Wednesday during a state visit to Tokyo, where he described climate change as a "red line" issue for endorsing a G-20 communique.
"It's the moment to be truly in time in the face of history and to fulfill our responsibility," Macron said. "I will not sign if we don't go further in our ambition about climate change. That would mean all those summits are for nothing."
On the periphery of the Osaka meetings, activists belonging to a coalition of 50 environmental groups protested outside a coal-fired power plant in the nearby port city of Kobe.
They chanted "No coal Japan!" while raising an inflatable depicting Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, taking aim at his efforts to promote such projects across the globe. They also want more aggressive efforts by the Japanese government to help curb climate change.
Japan is one of the largest funders of coal-fired power stations overseas, having ramped up their use inside the country after most nuclear power plants were idled following the 2011 nuclear disaster in Fukushima. The effort to offset the loss of the generating capacity has slowed Japan's own progress in curbing the carbon emissions that contribute to global warming.
"We made this balloon and organized this protest to make him feel embarrassed, have him feel the pressure inside and outside Japan," said Hanna Song of the Japan Center for a Sustainable Environment and Society. "We want him to stop funding coal and not to make climate change worse."
The leaders, arriving steadily throughout the day under heavy monsoon rains, were well insulated from such protests by the security blanketing Osaka, a business center of 2.7 million in western Japan.
The authorities closed roads and brought in platoons of extra police.
Dhaka, June 27 (UNB)- The 9th Social Business Day, hosted by Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus, will begin on Friday at the Centara Grand & Bangkok Convention Centre, Central World in Bangkok, Thailand.
This year 1,450 delegates from 58 countries have registered to attend the 2-day event to be inaugurated by Professor Muhammad Yunus, said a press release.
Yunus Centre, Dhaka, Asian Institute of Technology (AIT) and Kasetsart University, Thailand are jointly going to organise the event with a theme “Making Money is Happiness, Making Other People Happy is Super Happiness".
Keynote speeches will be delivered by Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and Pacific and Mechai Viravaidya, Chairman, Mechaiviravaidya Foundation and Father Enzo Fortunato, Spokesperson and Communication Director of The Holy Convent of Papal Basilica of Assisi.
A range of topics related to the social business ecosystem ranging from food and agriculture, deforestation, green energy to education, health, technology, sports, culture and arts will be discussed in the event.
Social Business Day is an annual event of experience sharing and goal setting for social business activists, supporters, partners, and investors and getting ready for the coming years.
The event attracts international and local social business activists, corporates and social leaders, leading NGOs, students, innovators and early adopters of the social business philosophy that looks to tackle socio economic problems at its core to update themselves on the social business frontier.
There will be nine country forums ranging from Bangladesh, China, Australasia, Japan, Europe etc where delegates from individual country will have separate conferences.
Bangkok will be the venue for Social Business Day for the first time. Eighth social business day took place in Bangalore while the previous social business days were held in Dhaka.
A pre-conference of the Social Business Academia Network will be held on June 29in order to prepare for Social Business Academia Conference 2019 which will take place in November in Germany.
Many of the representatives from Yunus Social Business Centres in 74 Universities in 34 countries will attend the conference.
Dhaka, June 27 (UNB) - The Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI) on Thursday urged the government to take steps to end harassment of businessmen by tax officials.
At a discussion titled ‘FBCCI ERP (Engage, Reflect and Plan of Action): Proposed National Budget and Finance Bill 2019-20’ at a city hotel, it also called for revising VAT, income tax and import duty proposed in the national budget for 2019-20 fiscal year.
“Field-level tax officials harass businessmen in various ways. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina announced a zero tolerance policy against corruption. You (tax officials) should issue notices to us (FBCCI and chambers concerned) before taking the final step against businesses,” said FBCCI President Sheikh Fazle Fahim.
He proposed withdrawal of advance tax (AT) from raw materials of industries and machinery.
Besides, tax officials’ power to seize, arrest and freeze bank accounts should be scrapped, Fahim said.
The FBCCI president further proposed reduction of 2.5 percent corporate tax and cancellation of whole 15 percent tax on stock dividend.
BGMEA President Rubana Huq said their members are being harassed in various ways. “We’d urged the National Board to Revenue (NBR) not to harass businesses without making any list of those engaged in wrongdoings but they don’t listen to us. They start wholesale harassment without giving any list,” she said.
Former FBCCI President Shafiul Islam (Mohiduddin) said the businessmen want a harassment-free environment in the country. “The business should be simplified for ease of doing business. Efficiency should be developed in the management.”
Speaking at the programme as the chief guest, Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi said the national budget has been proposed with a goal to flourish the country. “The government is a business-friendly one and the country is an investment-friendly one. The government also wants to increase the investment here.”
Claiming that there are so many good things in the proposed budget, he said if any issues is missing, it can be resolved through discussion after the passage of the budget in Parliament.
The minister called upon the businessmen not to be frustrated as the government is very positive about them. “One percent cash incentive has been given for the RMG industry.”
About the scope provided in the budget to legalise black money, Tipu Munshi said he likes to call it undisclosed money instead of black money. “We want to increase investment in the country and create more employments here. We don’t want that the money is siphoned off the country.”
Principal Coordinator (SDG Affairs) of the Prime Minister’s Office Md Abul Kalam Azad urged the businessmen to think about how to reduce the production cost and increase efficiency. “If you don’t become competitive and enhance product quality, you can’t survive in the world.”
Former BGMEA President Siddiqur Rahman said they want to pay VAT and tax without any harassment.
FBCCI Senior Vice President Md Muntakim Ashraf and Vice Presidents Md Siddiqur Rahman, Rezaul Karim Rejnu and Mir Nizamuddin and representatives from different business organizations were present there.
Singapore, June 27 (AP/UNB) — Asian stocks advanced Thursday ahead of a meeting between President Donald Trump and Chinese leader Xi Jinping at the G-20 summit in Japan this week.
Tokyo's benchmark Nikkei 225 rose 0.8% to 21,262.10 and the Kospi in South Korea climbed 0.9% to 2,139.91. Hong Kong's Hang Seng was up 0.9% at 28,466.09. The Shanghai Composite jumped 0.7% to 2,995.82 and Australia's S&P/ASX 200 added 0.1% to 6,644.90. Shares rose in Taiwan and throughout Southeast Asia.
The meeting is undoubtedly the economic highlight of the summit, held in Osaka, Japan, on Friday and Saturday. Investors hope that the presidents will move toward resolving a trade dispute that has raised business costs and weighed on global financial markets.
Trump has said he was prepared to place tariffs on $300 billion more in Chinese imports, covering everything China ships to the United States, if the talks with Xi don't end in progress.
"The Chinese economy's going down the tubes," he said in an interview with Fox Business Network on Wednesday. "They want to make a deal more than I do."
On Wednesday, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told CNBC that the two nations "were about 90% of the way there" with a trade deal. American and Chinese negotiators have completed 11 rounds of trade talks with no agreement.
Stephen Innes of Vanguard Markets believes the upcoming talks will be a "formality at best."
"Although Mnuchin suggested we are 90% there to a trade deal, that reaming 10% has always been the gap too far to bridge — especially that trust gap where the U.S. wants to keep existing tariffs in place to ensure China compliance," he added.
Wall Street made early gains Wednesday on optimism over the talks. But the rally fizzled and most major benchmarks were lower at the closing bell.
The S&P 500 index eased 0.1% to 2,913.78 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average shed less than 0.1% to 26,536.82. The Nasdaq composite added 0.3% to 7,909.97 while the Russell 2000 index of smaller company stocks slipped 0.2% to 1,517.78.
ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude lost 16 cents to $59.22 a barrel. It picked up $1.55 to settle at $59.38 a barrel on Wednesday. Brent crude oil, the international standard, shed 21 cents to $65.48 a barrel. The contract gained $1.41 to $65.69 a barrel in the previous session.
CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 107.97 yen from 107.79 yen late Wednesday. The euro weakened to $1.1364 from $1.1371.