ARAB TIMES, MONDAY, AUGUST 29, 2011
Jordan, Egypt ink gas deal Hyundai boss to give $462m to charity
Jordan’s energy czar says his ment stipulates higher costs, but South Korea’s top automaker The money will be donated to a accounting to raise a slush fund to dential pardon two months later.
country will sign an agreement declined to say how much. Hyundai Motor said Sunday its charity group founded by Hyundai, bribe government officials and Since then he has donated
with Egypt next month to resume Jordan depends on Egyptian chairman would give $462 million it said, adding the sum was the politicians in return for business shares worth 150 billion won for
natural gas supplies. to charity, partly fulfilling a pledge largest personal donation ever favours. charity, prompting calls from civic
Energy Minister Khaled gas to generate 80 percent of its made in 2006 while being investi- made in South Korea. He said at the time the donation groups and lawmakers to fully fulfill
Toukan says several attacks this electricity. The resource-poor gated for corruption. The move came amid calls for was aimed to “take social and ethi- his pledge to donate one trillion
year on Egypt’s pipeline deliver- country has resorted to heavy Chung Mong-Koo will donate Chung, 73, to honour his promise cal responsibility” for the scandal. won.
ing the fuel may prompt Jordan to fuel and diesel to keep national shares worth 500 billion won ($462 to donate one trillion won ($924 The tycoon was given a jail term, Hyundai Motor, with its affiliate
look for alternatives, but Jordan million) in Hyundai Glovis — a million). which was reduced on appeal in Kia Motors, is the world’s fifth
will now try to use Egyptian gas power plants running. The shift Hyundai Motor subsidiary — to Chung was later convicted of 2008 to a suspended three-year largest automaker and controls
to meet its energy needs. cost Jordan $4.2 million a day. help children from poor families, embezzling 90 billion won in com- sentence and 300 hours of public nearly 80 percent of the South
Toukan said Sunday the agree- (AP) the company said in a statement. pany funds through fraudulent service before receiving a presi- Korean auto market. (AFP)
Producer cites no impact on existing customer portfolio
Qatargas plans several LNG outages in autumn
DUBAI/DOHA, Aug 28, (RTRS): tively for around two weeks each mtpa train 3. dinated with all parties of our opera- Qatargas did not comment on could cut supply to north west
Qatargas will stop three of the from mid September to early “Qatargas can confirm that the tions, shipping and customers as part whether the inlet receiving facility European consumers already worried
world’s biggest liquefied natural gas November — when heating demand planned maintenance of its Trains 5, of our annual planning exercises. work would require the complete about Qatari LNG diversions to high-
(LNG) producing plants at different from big buyers in Europe and north- 6 and 7, as well as Qatargas 3 and 4 There will be no impact on our exist- shutdown of trains 3 or 4. er paying Japan, where gas demand
times during a rolling maintenance east Asia climbs as temperatures fall. inlet receiving facilities will take ing customer portfolio.” Some inlet receiving systems can has boomed since a March earth-
programme planned for this autumn, Qatargas did not give exact dates place this autumn,” a spokesperson On Friday, traders familiar with the be bypassed so that production can quake shut nuclear power plants.
the world’s largest LNG producer or durations on Sunday for the clo- from Qatargas in a statement on plans said work at trains 5-7 was be maintained, while others require a Qatargas operates seven LNG
said on Sunday. sures of its three newest production Sunday. expected to last for about two weeks complete shutdown, an industry trains with a capacity of 42 million
European gas prices leapt on lines — each able to produce 7.8 mil- “Qatargas operates a rolling pro- each, also reducing Qatari conden- source said. tonnes per annum (mtpa), but has
Friday after traders with knowledge lion tonnes a year (mtpa) of LNG — gramme of planned maintenance at sate production while the huge pro- British benchmark front-season signed several deals since March to
of the situation told Reuters Qatargas but said it also planned to do work on its facilities. These necessary, cessing plants attached to Qatar’s gas prices soared six percent on sell more LNG to new markets in
trains 5, 6 and 7 would shut consecu- parts of the 7.8 mtpa train 4 and 3.2 planned and safe shutdowns are coor- vast North Field are down. Friday on fears the maintenance addition to Japan.
Policy paralysis feared
Italy readies austerity changes;
pressure politicians economy minister ‘under fire’
JACKSON HOLE, Wyo, Aug 28,
(Agencies): The heads of the US
be a top priority, and he called on the
US government to put a floor under
VAT hike, local govt cuts, solidarity tax mulled
Federal Reserve, IMF and OECD the sagging housing market, remarks
stepped up pressure on political lead- that Lagarde echoed forcefully on ROME, Aug 28, (Agencies): Italy’s ruling coalition is preparing measures he likes without consulting,” Cabinet Undersecretary Daniela Santanche
ers on both sides of the Atlantic to Saturday. significant changes to its austerity plan presented in mid-August was quoted saying in la Repubblica on Sunday, adding Tremonti’s powers should be
shake off their inertia and tackle Bernanke’s speech was “the shot cut.
urgent economic problems. across the bow of the government
and Economy Minister Giulio Tremonti, who put together the “We don’t want supermen or superministers,” she said.
If politicians ignore their pleas — saying, ‘don’t keep layering expecta- original plan, appears increasingly isolated. Santanche listed several key amendments that will be made to the austerity plan,
including a blunt call from tions on the Federal Reserve, guys, The 45.5 billion euro ($65.3 million) austerity package, drawn up at the insis- which aims to balance the budget by 2013.
International Monetary Fund chief you have a job to do,’” Columbia tence of the European Central Bank, is currently being examined by the Senate, Among these, she said a plan to merge town councils with less that 1,000 inhabi-
Christine Lagarde to “act now” — the Business School Dean Glenn where any amendments must be presented by 1800 GMT Monday. tants would be scrapped, as would a proposal to abolish provincial governments with
slowdown in world growth and debt Hubbard said in an interview with Ahead of this deadline, tensions have been running high in Silvio Berlusconi’s cen- less than 300,000 inhabitants.
turmoil in Europe could morph into a Reuters Insider. tre-right coalition, with Tremonti widely blamed for what are seen as failings of the To raise more revenue, the main value added tax rate would be increased to 21 per-
deeper crisis, top monetary officials Monitoring original package and also for resisting the changes that are now being proposed. cent from 20 percent, she said.
and economists warned at an annual “The Fed is simply saying, ‘We are Italian newspapers report Berlusconi himself is exasperated by Tremonti’s inflexi- These changes have been urged by several government members but are said to be
retreat here. monitoring the situation very careful- bility and politicians and media close to the prime minister now regularly attack him opposed by Tremonti. Berlusconi says whatever changes are made in the individual
“I hope they listen,” said Bank of ly but would encourage the govern- in a way that would have been unthinkable a few months ago. measures, the overall size of the deficit correction will stay the same.
Israel Governor Stanley Fischer. ment, both parties, to get their act “Tremonti has to get used to the fact he’s not in charge, he can’t just draw up the Another amendment being considered is to soften the so-called “solidarity tax” on
Alarm over political deadlock was together and pass a long-term fiscal
as obvious a backdrop to the annual strengthening package and then per- high earners, by applying it only to those
meeting of policymakers in the wilds haps short-term stimulus.” who make more than 150,000 euros per
of Wyoming as the thunderstorms that The calls from the world’s econom- year, rather than those earning 90,000 as
rolled over the nearby Grand Teton ic policy elite may give some political in the original plan.
peaks and dumped rain on the cover to President Barack Obama, However, these and other possible
Jackson Lake Lodge. who faces a tough re-election fight changes are subject to frenetic negotia-
“The governance right now is not next year with the US unemployment tion ahead of the Monday evening dead-
going through a very brilliant rate stuck above 9 percent. line, with a key meeting scheduled for
moment, I have to say, neither in Obama is preparing for a speech Monday between Berlusconi and his
Europe nor in the United States,” after the Sept. 5 Labor Day holiday in main coalition partner, the pro-devolu-
Angel Gurria, who heads the multi- which he is expected to lay out pro- tion Northern League.
nation Organization for Economic posals to boost hiring. He is reaching So far the League has resisted pressure
Co-operation and Development, told out to other world leaders too. from other coalition members to raise
Reuters. On Saturday, Obama spoke with the retirement age.
“The signals that are coming out of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, The head of Italy’s main business
the short-term discussions is, ‘We and the White House said the two
can’t even agree on about the time of leaders vowed to act to shore up a
lobby said on Saturday the austerity
the day, even if there’s a big clock global recovery that now looks at risk. plan, which she already saw as inade-
telling us what the time of the day A day earlier Obama had called quate, looked sure to be “clearly wors-
is.’” Lagarde to talk about fiscal policy. ened” by the amendments under discus-
Impasse They agreed that the world economy sion.
needs further steps to boost growth. “There is hardly anything structural
In the United States, the political and nothing for growth,” Confindustria
impasse has thwarted moves to tame Obama’s potential presidential
massive budget deficits which challengers, including leading President Emma Marcegaglia said,
brought the nation to the edge of a Republican candidate Mitt Romney, adding it would “certainly have a
debt default and cost the United States have repeatedly blamed Obama’s depressive effect” on the economy.
its coveted AAA credit rating from policies for impeding growth. Criticism
Standard & Poor’s. The US economy grew less than 1 Criticism of Tremonti has been build-
In Europe, leaders are fighting over percent in the first half of the year and ing steadily, fuelling speculation he will
who should pay for the sovereign debt has yet to return to its pre-recession
size. soon resign or be pushed out of govern-
crisis in the euro zone, which has a ment.
unified regime for monetary policy Also: He has never been popular among col-
but whose member nations run their BERLIN: Tax relief promised for leagues, who resent his wide powers and
own budget policies. 2013 will be moderate, German autocratic style, but until recently he was
Lagarde, whose appearance on Chancellor Angela Merkel said in an invulnerable because his tight spending
Saturday was a late addition and interview on Sunday offering an early curbs were considered to have shielded
reflected her sense of urgency, deliv- glimpse of a policy held dear by her
ered a hard-hitting pitch against brak- liberal coalition partners. This file photo taken on March 7, 2011 shows Philippine President Benigno Aquino during a speech before members of Italy from the euro zone debt crisis.
ing spending too fast as nations strug- “In the fall, we will have tax the armed forces at Camp Aguinaldo in suburban Manila. (AFP) All that changed when Italian govern-
gle to rein in long-term budget income forecasts and when we know ment bonds suddenly came under market
deficits. them, we will decide before the end of Aquino on a mission to secure billions of dollars in deals attack this summer.
She was far from alone. the year on moderate tax decreases for An editorial on Sunday in daily Il
The Fed has slashed US interest low and medium incomes,” Merkel Giornale, owned by Berlusconi’s brother
rates to near zero and bought $2.3 tril-
lion in long-term securities in an
effort to kick-start the recovery. With
monetary policy stretched to its lim-
said to Bild am Sonntag.
The chancellor said that the ruling
conservative-liberal coalition had
agreed in July on tax reductions that
Philippines, China talk trade and virtually a mouthpiece for the prime
minister, strongly attacked Tremonti.
“If he’s so good, and so far they’ve left
things up to him, then why have we got
its, fiscal policy is now key, Fed would take effect on January 1, 2013. MANILA, Aug 28, (AFP): Philippine “We’ll all try our best to make this mate deposits among the biggest in the into this situation?” it asked, while
Chairman Ben Bernanke suggested. Germany holds general elections in President Benigno Aquino travels to trip very rewarding to both of our two world, according to the US State another article in the same newspaper
“Although the issue of fiscal sus- 2013 and little indication had been China this week on a mission to secure countries and two peoples,” China’s Department’s country profile. was headlined, “Silvio and Giulio head-
tainability must urgently be given so far on the scale or type of tax billions of dollars in trade deals, with ambassador to the Philippines, Liu But mining is not expected to the ing for the final battle”.
addressed, fiscal policymakers should cuts the government would propose. both sides looking to rebuild goodwill Jianchao, told reporters in a briefing sole, or even biggest, focus during A similar message was delivered on
not as a consequence disregard the Cutting taxes is a key policy of the amid a bruising territorial row. about Aquino’s visit. Aquino’s trip, which will take him to Saturday by Sandro Bondi, who this year
fragility of the current economic junior coalition party, the Free Aquino’s five-day visit starting “The Philippine economy is taking Beijing, Shanghai and the eastern sea- quit his posts as culture minister and
recovery,” he said on Friday. Democrats, but Finance Minister Tuesday is held against the backdrop off and I have told the Philippine peo- side city of Xiamen. national co-ordinator of the ruling
“Fortunately the two goals of Wolfgang Schaeuble of the conser- of increasingly strident Philippine ple that China is ready and willing to Philippine officials have said they People of Freedom party, but who
achieving fiscal sustainability — vative Christian-Democratic party has accusations of Chinese aggression and add power to the wings of the will be seeking Chinese investment in a
which is the result of responsible poli- resisted cuts believing that budget dis- remains close to Berlusconi.
bullying in their dispute over compet- Philippine economy.” raft of infrastructure projects, from rail “Giulio Tremonti has become more of
cies set in place for the longer term — cipline should remain the priority.
and avoiding the creation of fiscal Meanwhile, according to weekly
ing claims to parts of the South China Scoured to roads, airports and schools. a problem than an asset,” Bondi said.
headwinds for the current recovery der Spiegel, Schaeuble is about to Sea. China has scoured the world in There is also significant Philippine A dispute over austerity measures
are not incompatible.” revise the 2012 growth forecast to 2.0 Aquino’s aides said he would raise recent years for all kinds of natural investment in China and Aquino is within the Italian government deepened
Bernanke said battling long-term percent, up from 1.8 percent previous- the sensitive issue in his meetings with resources to fuel its fast-developing hoping his trip will deepen his coun- last week with Prime Minister Silvio
joblessness in the United States must ly. China’s leaders, including President economy and provide the raw materials try’s presence inside the world’s sec- Berlusconi publicly rebuking a key ally
Hu Jintao, but his main focus would be for its phenomenal manufacturing sec- ond-biggest economy. over comments that the country’s politi-
on improving economic ties. tor. In this light, Aquino will bring about cal system is dead.
“The visit hopes to push for more However, China has not clinched the 200 Filipino businesspeople with him. Northern League head Umberto Bossi
Germany marks 125 years trade, investment... it will also show-
case the Philippines as an attractive and
profitable business destination,”
kinds of multi-billion-dollar resource
contracts with the Philippines that it
has elsewhere — and Liu signalled
And in an effort to attract more
Chinese tourists, Aquino’s delegation
will press China to declare 2013 “Visit
criticised the fact rich northern regions
have to subsidise poor southern areas,
and concluded “the Italian system is con-
Foreign Affairs Assistant Secretary Chinese firms were becoming increas- the Philippines Year”. demned to death”.
of the automobile’s ‘birth’ Cristina Ortega told reporters.
Ortega said the two sides were plan-
ning to sign during Aquino’s visit a
ingly hungry for Philippine natural
“I think we do have great potential in
Nevertheless, Aquino has also told
the Philippine people he will not allow
economic priorities to override his
Bossi, whose far-right party has previ-
ously flirted with separatism, said Italy
no longer functions and spoke of a
STUTTGART, Germany, Aug 28, (AFP): tal Stuttgart will not miss the Mercedes five-year economic plan that would tar- the area of mining,” Liu said when country’s claims to parts of the South greater northern Italy.
Germany is celebrating this year the birth star that sits above the main train station get $60 billion in trade in 2016, a six- asked what types of investments China China Sea. Berlusconi took the unusual step of
of the automobile, with a patent applied or the posters that advertise the local auto fold increase from 2010. was looking for in its fellow Asian China claims most of the South issuing a public rebuke.
for by Carl Benz 125 years ago for a museum. She said one immediate contract country. China Sea, even near the coasts of “I regret being in disagreement with
motorized tricycle, in hopes of drawing Built at the base of a hill that dominates may be sealed involving a Chinese car “I think that the mining companies, Southeast Asian countries, and the my friend Umberto Bossi. I firmly
tourists smitten by cars. the city, the museum inaugurated in 2006 manufacturer investing at least $1.5 mining corporations of China and the Philippines has accused Chinese forces believe that Italy exists and will always
The national tourism office has made boasts a striking glass facade that covers a billion in the Philippines. mine owners of this country can have of acts such as firing warning shots at exist,” the prime minister said in a state-
the auto industry a highlight of its annual double spiral of steel meant to represent China, with an eye on the direct and efficient... negotiations for Filipino fishermen in disputed waters ment.
programme for the first time and the the automobile’s DNA. Philippines’ vast and mostly untapped furthering their cooperation on min- this year. He said Italians had always reacted
southwestern region of Baden- An elevator that emits sports car sounds natural resources, has also signalled it ing.” “As far as our sovereignty is con- with great pride to the “snubs” of history
Wuerttemburg alone has organised 200 takes visitors to halls that contain the first does not want the maritime tensions to The Philippines has untapped miner- cerned, no one can claim our islands. and said that Italy’s north and south
events from May through September. autos, invented almost simultaneously by derail a flourishing economic partner- al wealth estimated at more than $840 We will not just back down from a larg- share a “common history and a common
Anyone travelling to the regional capi- Carl Benz and Gottlieb Daimler. ship. billion, with its copper, gold and chro- er country,” Aquino said this month. destiny”.