Apr. 30 – Asia shares surged on Thursday as higher industrial output in Japan and an upbeat Wall Street session buoyed investors.
The stock markets in Asia have been steadily growing from their low points late last year, and the benchmark indexes in Shanghai and Mumbai, the centers of the two biggest emerging economies in Asia, have both seen their indexes grow at double-digit rates over the past four months.
The Bombay Stock Exchange’s benchmark Sensitive Index rose over 15 percent through April from its starting position of 9719.21 on January 1. It closed on April 29 at 11403.2. The Shanghai SE Composite IX, which tracks the daily price performance of all A-shares and B-shares listed on the Shanghai Stock Exchange, meanwhile, gained almost 30 percent over the last four months, ending on April 30 at 2377.569 points. Continue reading
Apr. 29 – In a statement that may raise eyebrows amongst many Indian’s, China has announced a heavy development program for cricket and has said it aims to become a full Test nation by 2020.
Having cricket test nation status authorizes countries to play the longest and most prestigious form of cricket, and is generally accepted as being the ultimate test of playing ability between nations. There are currently just nine countries recognized as having this status: England, Australia, South Africa, New Zealand, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and the West Indies. Continue reading
Apr. 27 – As the world shifts its political positions and emerging countries flex new found muscles in the aftermath of the global financial crisis, how has China reacted to the situation? As always when it comes to this enigmatic nation, the signs are mixed, and are not consistent. It is also becoming apparent, at least, that U.S.-China comparisons are not really valid. Should a comparison be made with any country, surely it would have to be with India. Not only are the two nations neighbors, they also have massive populations, emerging domestic markets, and until recently, shared religious values. On the other hand, there is mutual mistrust, still simmering border disputes, and completely separate political systems. The similarities and differences between the two are far more aligned than those between China and America. Continue reading
Apr. 27 – The Taliban have retreated from their positions in Buner, close to Islamabad after the Pakistan Military advised them they were prepared to launch a major offensive against them if they did not retreat from their positions. Meanwhile, the rebel Tamil Tigers in Sri Lanka have all but been defeated, with reports of the Tigers’ leader, Vellupillai Prabhakaran, fleeing the island by sea. Alerts along the east India coast have been issued to try and apprehend him.
While these two incidents, one little more than a skirmish, the other the end game to a 30 year civil war may bring India some respite to its borders, neither situation has yet been satisfactorily resolved. It is suspected that the Taliban are regrouping, and their incursion so far into Pakistan was a show of strength; more trouble can be expected from them as the Pakistani government tries to assert authority. The Tamil Tigers however, while defeated militarily, have not been defeated politically. The end to the war is likely to spread to underground terrorist activities while the Tamils continue to feel disenfranchised. Continue reading
Apr. 24 – The Indian Formula One Racing team Force India, while yet to get of the bottom of the pile, came close to winning their first F1 points in Shanghai last week. The team sports the Indian flag as its team colors and has attracted sponsorship from Indian companies Kingfisher, ICICI Bank, Reliance Industries and Kanyan Capital.
Force India was formed after Indian businessmen Vijay Mallya and Michiel Mol bought the Spyker F1 team for US$115 million. The team races its own designed cars, powered by Mercedes-Benz, and was able to rise from 18th to as high as sixth with just 5 laps to go. What would have been the first points of the season for Force India slipped away when Adrian Sutil’s car hydroplaned off the track and into the tire wall. Force India has been in the hunt over the last few races, but a combination of bad luck and occasional driving mistakes has left them empty handed to date. Continue reading