Asia

China is trying to cool its costly and dangerously debt-ridden housing market, where high prices and go-go levels of borrowing and spending are increasingly seen as a national threat. But as the troubles of a major property developer and its $300 billion mountain of debt drive a government effort to contain the peril, Beijing risks hurting a major driver of its crucial economic growth engine: home buyers like He Qiang, the New York Times reported.
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Chinese President Xi Jinping announced the launch of a 1.5 billion yuan ($232.47 million) fund on Tuesday to support biodiversity protection in developing countries. Xi was virtually addressing the COP15 biodiversity summit in Kunming, China, where diplomats, scientists, and conservationists are meeting with the aim of forging a global agreement to halt and reverse the destruction of nature. "Developing countries need help and support and solidarity must be strengthened to allow developing countries to benefit in a fairer way," Xi said.
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Chinese President Xi Jinping is zeroing in on the ties that China’s state banks and other financial stalwarts have developed with big private-sector players, expanding his push to curb capitalist forces in the economy, the Wall Street Journal reported. Xi, who started his campaign late last year with a regulatory assault on private technology giants, is launching a sweeping round of inspections of financial institutions.
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Chinese developer Sinic Holdings said on Monday it would likely default on bonds worth $250 million, as it does not have enough financial resources to the make payments by their maturity date, Reuters reported. The case highlights the impact of China Evergrande Group , which is struggling under $305 billion in debt, on the rest of the high-yield sector as liquidity dries up and sales slow.
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After clearing a key vote in parliament, Malaysia is set to raise the limit on government debt for the second time in a little over a year as it seeks to fund additional pandemic support measures and bolster its economic recovery, Bloomberg News reported. A majority of lawmakers in the lower house voted for increasing the statutory debt ceiling to 65% of gross domestic product until end-2022, from 60%. The bill will next head to the senate, controlled by Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob’s coalition, before it’s signed into law by the king.
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India’s central bank surprised markets by suspending its version of quantitative easing, signaling the start of tapering pandemic-era stimulus measures as an economic recovery takes hold, Bloomberg News reported. There’s no need for further bond-buying, Reserve Bank of India Governor Shaktikanta Das said in an online broadcast Friday, while stressing the step is not a reversal of its accommodative policy stance. The RBI will be ready to resume purchases if needed, he said. Bonds were mixed.
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Tata Sons Pvt. was selected as the winning bidder for India’s flag carrier, ending decades of attempts to privatize a money-losing and debt-laden airline, and potentially ending years of taxpayer-bailouts that’s kept the company alive, Bloomberg News reported. Tata Sons, which originally launched Air India Ltd. with a namesake branding in 1932, bid 180 billion rupees ($2.4 billion) as an enterprise value for Air India, Tuhin Kanta Pandey, the top bureaucrat at India’s Department of Investment and Public Asset Management, said at a briefing Friday.
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China Evergrande Group offshore bondholders are concerned that it is close to defaulting on debt payments and want more information and transparency from the cash-strapped property developer, their advisers said, Reuters reported. Evergrande, which could trigger one of China's largest defaults as it wrestles with debts of more than $300 billion and whose troubles have already sent shockwaves across global markets, missed payments on dollar bonds, worth a combined $131 million, that were due on Sept. 23 and Sept. 29.
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Creditors have yet to receive repayment of a dollar bond they say is guaranteed by China Evergrande Group and one of its units, in what could be the firm’s first major miss on maturing notes since regulators urged the developer to avoid a near-term default, Bloomberg News reported. Some investors hadn’t received the principal payment for a note that matured Oct. 3 as of Thursday in Hong Kong, according to people with knowledge of the situation who asked not to be named discussing private matters. As Oct. 3 was a Sunday, the effective due date was Monday.
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Vietnam's slow reopening this past week was bittersweet for Stanley Furniture, which had been in COVID lockdown along with thousands of other manufacturers, from Netflix supplier ASRock to shoe giant Pou Chen. On the one hand, Stanley employees were glad to go back to making desks and drawers. On the other, their goods are stuck in storage because global shipping costs skyrocketed, Nikkei Asia reported. That is just one of many risks hanging over the fragile supply chain even after Ho Chi Minh City and surrounding provinces on Friday lifted a bruising pandemic shutdown.
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