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Author Archives: Tahir Iqbal

emand for Malaysian palm oil seen to rise by 15% following export tax

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia could see rising demand for palm oil from key overseas buyers in the coming weeks following its decision to suspend export taxes on crude palm oil for three months from Monday. The government announced the tax suspension on Friday and traders said the move will make Malaysian palm oil more competitive, especially in price sensitive markets such ... Read More »

Norway savings bank Has $2.04m stake in Johnson & Johnson

OLSO: Norway savings bank lowered its stake in shares of Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) by 4.6% in the third quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the securities & exchange commission. The firm owned 15,701 shares of the company’s stock after selling 755 shares during the quarter. Johnson & Johnson comprises 2.0% of Norway Savings Bank’s portfolio, making the ... Read More »

Stocks cheer $9tl year, downer for the dollar

LONDON: Markets were ending 2017 in a party mood on Friday after a year in which a concerted pick-up in global growth boosted corporate profits and commodity prices, while benign inflation kept central banks from snatching away the monetary punch bowl. MSCI’s world equity index, which tracks 47 countries, .MIWD00000PUS inched up 0.15 percent as six straight weeks and now ... Read More »

South Korea welcomes tax on clergy amid anger at privileged class

SEOUL: The South Korean government is planning to impose an income tax on pastors, monks and priests for the first time, starting next year, on the back of changing public sentiment toward religious leaders. The Finance Ministry announced last week that the revised Income Tax Law will take effect in January. With the change, all employees at religious institutions, including ... Read More »

Switzerland to lower import duties to better compete on int’l markets

ZURICH: Switzerland will ease import duties on a wide range of goods so that businesses in the country can produce goods more cheaply and be more competitive on international markets, the Federal Council said in a statement on Wednesday. The move will bring savings for businesses and shoppers worth some 900 million Swiss francs (about 913 million U.S. dollars), giving ... Read More »

Kuwait officials: ICT vital in securing economic growth

KUWAIT CITY: In a report by Kuwait News Agency, the officials said investment in the ICT sector generates positive social and economic impacts on labour and society alike. During the sidelines of Kuwait Huawei Day Acting Director-General of the Central Agency for Information Technology Qusai Al-Shatti said the ICT sector is of paramount importance to comprehensive economic and social development ... Read More »

Norway permitted to extend electric car tax breaks

OLSO: The European free trade association surveillance authority has permitted Norway to extend a series of temporary tax exemptions for zero emission vehicles, including in the area of value-added tax. Under the package of measures designed to encourage more electric car sales, zero emission vehicles will be zero-rated for VAT purposes for a further three years. Additional tax breaks were ... Read More »

Danish government wins backing for 2018 budget defusing crisis

COPENHAGEN: Denmark’s right wing government secured backing from a junior partner for the 2018 budget on Tuesday, defusing a crisis that had threatened to bring down the minority coalition. The Liberal Alliance (LA), part of the three way coalition led by Prime Minister Lokke Rasmussen’s Liberals, said it would support the budget in parliament and agreed to postpone the negotiations ... Read More »

France papers to lure london bankers with tax cuts

PARIS: The French Government is planning to unveil additional tax cuts next year to encourage London’s bankers and financiers to relocate to Paris. According to a report in French daily Les Echoes, the tax cuts are likely to focus on reducing the level of employer social security contributions for high-salary workers, which make the cost of employing skilled employees in ... Read More »

Korea suspected again in crypto exchange attacks

SEOL: South Korea’s chief intelligence agency suspects that North Korean hackers are behind attacks on the country’s most trafficked bitcoin exchange. According to a report this week by the BBC, the National Intelligence Service (NIS) has officially passed evidence of the allegations to prosecutors that would affirm attacks on a Bithumb employee’s home computer dating back to February amount to ... Read More »

Kuwait ministry says does not recognise virtual currency Bitcoin

KUWAIT CITY: Kuwait’s Ministry of Finance does not recognize the virtual currency ‘Bitcoin’ and forbids its trading in the Kuwaiti financial institutions. The sources pointed out both the Ministry of Finance and the Central Bank of Kuwait cannot punish trading because they do not recognize it, not to mention it is a virtual currency used for ‘exchange’ without a central ... Read More »

Pak Afghan officials urge relations between both countries be normalized,

KABUL: Resumption of trade dialogue, visa facilitations, exchange programmes and people to people contact should be carried out to normalise the relationship between Pakistan and Afghanistan. This was decided during a dialogue held in the Afghan capital. The Track-II/1.5 Beyond Boundaries dialogue was organised by the Islamabad-based Center for Research and Security Studies (CRSS) and its Afghan counterpart, Organization for ... Read More »

ASEAN free trade to put pressure on Vietnam

HANOI: ATIGA promises great opportunities for the country, including exports of many products the country has advantages to other members of the bloc without or very low import tariffs.Besides, Vietnamese businesses and consumers will enjoy access to many new goods and have more choices. ATIGA came into effect in 2010, and thanks to it and other trade agreements ASEAN has ... Read More »

Saudi Arabia bans cow imports from Spain

MADRID: The ministry imposed the ban after the World Organisation for Animal Health confirmed a recent case of mad cow disease in Spain. The atypical type H form of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) commonly known as mad cow disease- was detected in a cow in El Sahugo, Salamanca, close to the Portuguese border. Another case of mad cow disease was ... Read More »

Raw marble smuggling from Herat continues unabated

KABUL: In violation of President Ashraf Ghani’s warning, unprocessed marble also known as white gold of Afghanistan continues to be smuggled abroad. During his visit to Herat about two years back, President Ghani had promised taking serious steps to prevent the export and smuggling of unprocessed marble from Herat. At a meeting with businessmen, he had said: “I have received ... Read More »

Korea mulling capital gains tax on Bitcoins

SEOL: The Korean government is mulling measures to impose capital gains tax, among other taxes, on cryptocurrency investments, according to media reports on Dec. 18. It will reportedly convene a task force, made up of officials from the Ministry of strategy and finance, the National tax service and cryptocurrency experts to discuss tax measures on Bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies.  The ... Read More »

Exports of garment and textile hit US$31b

HANOI: Faced with the situation, textile firms have quickly overhauled their production systems, focused on advantageous products and developed others to meet market demand, and sought new markets, he said. They have also adopted the latest technologies to produce quality products more efficiently, he said. The association has stepped up co-operation with foreign organisations to organise trade promotions and training ... Read More »

Increased customs duty a statutory industry wise hike: Apple

MUMBAI: The government’s decision to hike the customs duty from 10 percent to 15 percent for mobile handsets is a statutory industry wise hike, Apple India said. “There is no comment on this as it’s a statutory industry wise duty hike,” an Apple official told IANS. The notification issued by the Department of Revenue under the Finance Ministry said customs ... Read More »

Economy minister signs agreement to facilitate exports to Indonesia

JAKARTA: Minister of National Economy Abeer Odeh, Sunday signed a memorandum of understanding with her Indonesian counterpart to facilitate exporting products to Indonesia. The agreement, which is a product of bilateral efforts to enhance relations between the two countries, was signed on the sidelines of the 11th ministerial conference of the World Trade Organization held in the Argentine capital Buenos ... Read More »

4men arrested for drug smuggling at Taoyuan airport

TAIPEI: The Criminal Investigation Bureau (CIB) arrested four Taiwanese men at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport for trying to smuggle 9.216 kilograms of ketamine into the country from Malaysia. The men were found with the drugs strapped to their stomach and lower legs at a customs check at the airport, the CIB told reporters on Sunday.  After investigating the activities of ... Read More »