North America

Mexico's new finance minister Rogelio Ramirez de la O said on Friday that the 2022 budget will not increase taxes, and that the government will instead focus on combating tax evasion, Reuters reported. Speaking to lawmakers in Congress, Ramirez de la O said the budget would not include tax rate hikes, and would be balanced, responsible and realistic. Read more.
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Centerra Gold Inc.’s units on Wednesday filed a motion in a U.S. Bankruptcy Court seeking penalties of $1 million a day against the Kyrgyzstan government, related to the seizure of the Canadian company’s Kumtor gold mine, Reuters reported. Centerra Gold said in May, its Kyrgyzstan units Kumtor Gold Co. (KGC) and Kumtor Operating Co. (KOC) commenced bankruptcy proceedings in a U.S. court following nationalization of the miner’s Kumtor gold mine by the former Soviet republic.
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Laurentian University is asking for permission to extend its restructuring efforts into the new year, documents filed before the courts reveal, Sudbury.com reported. The university is in court once again Aug. 27, asking that the stay of proceedings protecting it against its creditors be extended until Jan. 31, 2022. At the same court date, Laurentian is also asking that the maturity date for more than $35 million in bridge financing loans also be extended until Jan. 31, 2022. The university announced Feb.
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Vice President Kamala Harris made the case for the U.S. to strengthen its economic ties with Southeast Asia during a two-day trip to Singapore, where she stressed the need to work with countries to ease supply-chain constraints as a surge of Covid-19 cases has hit factories in the region, the Wall Street Journal reported. Harris said Tuesday she discussed the supply-chain problems extensively with Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong during their bilateral meetings.
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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau promised to introduce a two-year ban on foreign home buyers to tackle housing affordability in Canada if he’s re-elected, Bloomberg News reported. The proposed restriction is an attempt to cool a housing market that has soared during the Covid-19 pandemic. Surging prices have become a central issue in the campaign for the Sept. 20 vote, in which Trudeau hopes to regain a majority in parliament, with all three major parties promising crackdowns. “You shouldn’t lose a bidding war on your home to speculators.
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The remnants of Greensill Capital, the U.K. financing company that collapsed earlier this year, filed for chapter 15 bankruptcy in the U.S., aiming to halt litigation filed by one of its biggest clients, a coal-mining company owned by the governor of West Virginia, WSJ Pro Bankruptcy reported. Greensill’s U.S. bankruptcy filing on Wednesday seeks to halt a lawsuit brought earlier this year by coal supplier Bluestone Resources Inc. and its owners, West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice and his family, according to court papers filed in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in New York.
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The International Monetary Fund said it will prevent Afghanistan from gaining access to some $450 million in aid in the wake of the Taliban's takeover the country, after the U.S. Treasury Department moved to block the funds, Politico reported. The IMF, with U.S. backing, is issuing billions of dollars worth of new “special drawing rights,” a reserve asset that can be converted to government-backed money, to aid poorer countries. A portion of those assets was scheduled to be allocated to Afghanistan next week, an event that generated urgent pushback from Republican lawmakers.
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Canadians are piling into mortgages at more than double the historical pace as the housing market appears to moderate after a pandemic boom, Bloomberg News reported. The total value of residential mortgages rose by 1.2% to C$1.73 trillion ($1.4 trillion) in June, according to data released Thursday by Statistics Canada. That’s the fastest monthly increase in loans borrowed for real-estate purchases since 2007. The spike in mortgages is evidence of Canadians’ demand for more living space during the Covid-19 pandemic, which sent sales and prices to record highs.
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Mexico’s President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said on Thursday he’ll seek central bank approval to use $12 billion in International Monetary Fund reserves to pay down debt, as he presses ahead with austerity, Bloomberg News reported. Lopez Obrador thanked bank Governor Alejandro Diaz de Leon for being open to the idea of using the windfall, which is being transferred to the monetary authority from the IMF, to prepay liabilities. He declined to comment on Diaz de Leon’s prior remarks that the government must purchase the reserves from the bank.
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U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen should intervene at the International Monetary Fund to prevent Taliban-led Afghanistan from being able to use almost $500 million in reserves, Republican House members said, Bloomberg News reported. The group of 18 lawmakers, including Arkansas’s French Hill, wrote to Yellen on Tuesday in a letter obtained by Bloomberg News, asking Yellen to take action at the fund and respond to their request by Thursday afternoon.
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