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Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ In regard to his meeting with Prime Minister J.Erdenebat on January 20, Erdenes Tavan Tolgoi CEO D.Ariunbold briefed reporters on the company’s operations at Tavan Tolgoi deposit, one of the world’s largest coal fields.
Since 2011, Mongolia has been paying off its USD 350 million debt to Chinese aluminum company Chalco in the form of deliveries of coal from East Tsankhi section of the Tavan Tolgoi deposit. According to the CEO, Mongolia’s debt to Chalco stands at USD 76.5 million.
Until March 31, Erdenes Tavan Tolgoi will supply coal from East Tsankhi to Chalco at the rate USD 59.3. “We estimated that the Chalco debt will be settled by April this year”, the CEO said.
About a month ago, Erdenes Tavan Tolgoi JSC resumed its operations at the West Tsankhi section of the deposit. During this time, the company has exploited 1.2 million tons of soil extracting 400-500 thousand tons of coal.
When asked how much coal the company plans to extract in 2017, he answered, “The Board of Directors of the company gave instructions to export 11.5 million tons of coal, and we see that it is possible”.
Erdenes Tavan Tolgoi JSC is a subsidiary of state owned investment company Erdenes Mongol which fully owns the Tavan Tolgoi deposit.
Russian energy giant Gazprom now owns more than a third of the European gas market, the company's CEO claimed on Friday.
Gazprom chief Alexey Miller announced that the company now holds a 34 percent share in the European market, up from 31 percent in 2015.
The company produced 20 billion cubic meters of gas in 2016, with a record 180 billion cubic meters being sold abroad, the Interfax news agency reported Miller saying.
The company's shipments within Russia also grew, Miller said, adding that gas consumption was “an indicator of a country's economic growth.”
Global stock markets were flat to positive in cautious trading on Friday awaiting Donald Trump’s inauguration speech as the 45th President of the United States. He's expected to take the oath of office at about 5:00pm GMT.
As of 2:33pm GMT, Germany's DAX was up 0.11 percent at 11,609.93. The CAC 40 in Paris added 0.13 percent to 4,847.33. Britain's FTSE 100 was slightly down to 7,205.04.
The US dollar moved higher with analysts attributing it to the Trump administration's support for the greenback. Incoming Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the US prefers a strong dollar long-term. The euro was slightly lower, down 0.02 percent to $1.0648.
"Markets are now waiting for more evidence that Donald Trump will deliver on fiscal stimulus and deregulation, but uncertainty remains high about what he will do on trade," Shane Oliver of AMP Capital was cited as saying by AP. "The risk of a tit-for-tat trade war between the US and China is high, particularly if Trump formally brands China a currency manipulator."
Trump critic billionaire George Soros warned the stock market rally that followed Trump’s November election victory would fade once he takes office.
Wall Street's main index, the Dow Jones Industrial Average, has surged nearly ten percent since Trump's surprising victory on November 7.
“Right now uncertainty is at a peak,” Soros told Bloomberg at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. “And, actually, uncertainty is the enemy of long-term investment. So I don’t think the markets are going to do very well.”
Stocks in Asia were also steady with the Shanghai Composite closing up 0.7 percent at 3,123.14 and Shenzhen Composite gaining 1.5 percent to 1,885.775. Japan’s Nikkei also rose 0.3 percent to 19,137.91, notching a third consecutive gain.
Shares in Shanghai and Shenzhen rose following the government’s announcement the economy grew at a 6.8 percent annual rate in the last quarter, helped by property investment and government spending. Full year growth was 6.7 percent, the weakest in three decades over concerns of a potential trade war with the US.
China’s Commerce Ministry, however, said on Thursday that Beijing was ready to work with the new US administration to promote the healthy development of commercial ties.
Oil was trading higher with benchmark US crude WTI up 2.51 percent to $52.66 per barrel as of 2:33pm GMT. Brent crude was up 2.44 percent at $55.48 a barrel.
South Korean prosecutors arrested the culture minister on Saturday for suspected involvement in drawing up a blacklist of artists, writers and entertainers critical of President Park Geun-hye amid a graft scandal that led to her impeachment.
Cho Yoon-sun became the first sitting minister ever to be arrested, the special prosecutor's team, investigating the scandal, said.
The country has gripped by crisis for months, and Park could become the first democratically elected leader to be removed from office if her impeachment by parliament is upheld by the Constitutional Court.
Seoul Central District Court said on Saturday in a text message to reporters that minister Cho was arrested because her crime had been "verified and there were concerns over destruction of evidence".
The special prosecutor's office on Wednesday asked the court to issue warrants to arrest Cho and a former presidential chief of staff on suspicion of abuse of power and perjury.
The former chief of staff, Kim Ki-choon, was also arrested.
The same court on Thursday refused to grant an arrest warrant for the head of Samsung Group [SAGR.UL], the country's largest conglomerate, on charges of bribery, embezzlement and perjury amid the corruption scandal.
The reprieve for Jay Y. Lee, 48, may only be temporary, as the prosecutors said they would pursue the case.
The prosecution team questioned Cho and Kim this week over allegations that they created the blacklist of actors, writers and other cultural figures considered critical of the current administration, which both have publicly denied.
Park has been accused by legal authorities and lawmakers of putting pressure on the entertainment industry in retaliation against satirical attacks and criticism. The allegations have evoked bad memories of the oppression suffered when Park's late father, Park Chung-hee, ruled the country. [L4N1F81T1]
BLACKLIST? WHAT BLACKLIST?
The presidential Blue House denies that such a blacklist exists. Culture Minister Cho has said many times that she has heard reports of such a list but that she had nothing to do with it.
Cho did not respond to reporters on Friday at the court to attend a hearing on her arrest warrant.
Park was impeached by parliament in December after accusations that she colluded with long-time friend Choi Soon-sil to pressure big businesses to donate to two foundations set up to back the president’s policy initiatives.
Park, 64, remains in office but has been stripped of her powers while the Constitutional Court decides whether to uphold the impeachment.
The special prosecutor's office said on Friday it summoned Samsung Electronics Co Ltd Executive Vice President
Hwang Sung-soo for questioning. It did not elaborate.
Samsung Electronics is the flagship company of Samsung Group and is the world's top manufacturer of smartphones, memory chips and flat-screen televisions.
A Samsung Group spokesman declined to comment. Hwang was not available for comment.
The special prosecutor's office is investigating whether the
conglomerate paid bribes to Park's confidant, Choi Soon-sil, to
win support from the National Pension Service for the 2015
merger of two Samsung Group affiliates.
Park and Choi have denied wrongdoing. Samsung has acknowledged making contributions to entities
controlled by Choi but has denied accusations of lobbying to
push through the merger.
In another scandal indirectly affecting South Korea, the United States has asked South Korea to arrest a brother of former U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on charges that he engaged in a bribery scheme to carry out the sale of a Vietnamese building complex.
Ban, who is ranked second in opinion polls among potential candidates for South Korean president, said in Seoul he knew nothing about the case but issued an apology for family members who have caused public concern.
(Reporting by Ju-min Park; Editing by Nick Macfie & Simon Cameron-Moore)...
Apple Inc filed a $1 billion lawsuit against supplier Qualcomm Inc on Friday, days after the US government filed a lawsuit that accused the chip maker of resorting to anticompetitive tactics to maintain a monopoly over key semiconductors in mobile phones.
Qualcomm is a major supplier to both Apple and Samsung Electronics Co Ltd for "modem" chips that connect phones to wireless networks. The two companies together accounted for 40 percent of Qualcomm's $23.5 billion in revenue in its most recent fiscal year.
In the lawsuit filed in US District Court for the Southern District of California, Apple accused Qualcomm of overcharging for chips and refusing to pay some $1 billion in promised rebates. Apple said in its complaint that Qualcomm withheld the rebates because of Apple's discussions with South Korea's antitrust regulator, the Korea Fair Trade Commission.
"If that were not enough, Qualcomm then attempted to extort Apple into changing its responses and providing false information to the KFTC in exchange for Qualcomm's release of those payments to Apple. Apple refused," Apple said in its lawsuit.
Qualcomm did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Qualcomm has patents for chips which include standard essential patents, a term used to describe technology that is required to be licensed broadly and on "reasonable" terms.
In its lawsuit, Apple accused Qualcomm of refusing to license the technology to other manufacturers to prevent them from making the chips.
It also accused Qualcomm of selling chips while requiring Apple to pay a separate licensing fee for the same chips, in a "no license, no chip" policy.
In addition, Qualcomm pressured network carriers to not sell or support Apple devices made with Intel chipsets Apple said.
The KFTC fined Qualcomm $854 million in December for what it called unfair patent licensing practices.
In February 2015, Qualcomm paid a $975 million fine in China, while the European Union in December 2015 accused it of abusing its market power to thwart rivals.
On Tuesday, the US Federal Trade Commission filed a lawsuit against Qualcomm, saying the San Diego-based company used its dominant position as a supplier of certain phone chips to impose "onerous" supply and licensing terms on cellphone manufacturers. Qualcomm said it would contest the FTC complaint.
Qualcomm was the sole supplier of modem chips for Apple's phones until the release of the iPhone 7 in September. Intel Corp supplied about half of the modem chips for the newest models, said Stacy Rasgon, a senior analyst at Bernstein Research.
Apple made the move around the same time that Samsung, which had switched to using its own internal chips for its Galaxy S6 phones, returned to Qualcomm for the Galaxy S7.
Qualcomm "has been able to manage through (the Apple contract loss) pretty well because they got back Samsung at the same time," Rasgon said.
Apple is known for seeking multiple suppliers to keep prices down, said Jim Morrison, vice-president of technical intelligence for TechInsights, which tears down devices to analyze their parts....
The administration of new US President Donald Trump has announced through the White House website that the US is withdrawing from the Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade agreement.
The website says that with tough and fair agreements, international trade can be used to grow the US economy.
It adds that this strategy starts by withdrawing from the TPP.
In February of last year, 12 countries including Japan and the United States signed the pact. Member countries have since been proceeding with domestic procedures needed to put the agreement into effect. Congressional approval in the US is necessary for implementing the TPP.
The announcement of US withdrawal means the pact is unlikely to take effect.
Instead, the Trump administration plans to negotiate bilateral economic deals that are more likely to reflect US national interests.
But the US presence in Asia could decrease as negotiations are underway on the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, or RCEP, which includes China and Japan, but not the US.
Trump has suggested that the US will impose high tariffs on imports from China, with which the US has a huge trade deficit.
The White House website also says Trump is committed to renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement.
It says that if Mexico and Canada refuse a renegotiation that gives American workers a fair deal, then the president will give notice of the US intent to withdraw from NAFTA.
Trump has criticized NAFTA, saying it has caused factories in the US to move to Mexico. He has warned that he will impose 35-percent tariffs on products made at such factories in Mexico.
Some analysts say Trump's protectionist trade policy may lead to stagnation in global trade.
US-Mongolia Transparency Agreement ratified at Washington ceremony on January 18, will enter into force on March 18
More than three years after it was signed in September 2013 by US Trade Representative Michael Froman and then-Foreign Minister Lu. Bold, the US-Mongolia Transparency Agreement was finally ratified on Wednesday, January 18, at a Washington DC ceremony at which letters by Ambassador Froman and Mongolian Ambassador to the US Bulgaa Altangerel were exchanged certifying that both the US and Mongolia have completed their respective legal requirements to implement the agreement. Formally known as the “Agreement on Transparency in Matters Related to International Trade and Investment between the United States of America and Mongolia,” the agreement will enter into force on Friday, March 18, 60 days after the January 18 ceremony.
The agreement applies to matters relating to international trade and investment and includes joint commitments to provide opportunities for public comment on proposed laws and regulations and to publish final laws and regulations in English. The English publication provision is expected to make it easier for all foreign companies to do business in, and invest in, Mongolia. The agreement also commits both nations ensure that administrative agencies apply fair, impartial and reasonable procedures and that persons affected by the decisions of administrative agencies have a right to appeal those decisions. Other sections cover the application of disciplines on bribery and corruption.
Certification of the agreement came two days before Ambassador Froman will leave his post at USTR on January 20, after President-Elect Donald Trump is inaugurated. It is customary for all Presidential appointees to resign at the end of an administration. At the January 18 ceremony, Ambassador Froman offered his appreciation to US State Department officials for their valuable support leading up to the signing and exchange of letters. President-Elect Trump has nominated Washington trade lawyer Robert Lighthizer, a former Deputy US Trade Representative, to succeed Froman. The date of a confirmation hearing at the Senate Finance Committee has not yet been announced.
“On this landmark occasion, “ said NAMBC Chairman Frank Herbert, “we also want to pay tribute not only to Ambassador Froman and his team but also most particularly to former US Ambassadors Jonathan Addleton and Piper Campbell, and their successor, Ambassador Jennifer Galt, and to Mongolia’s Ambassadors to the US Khasbazaryn Bekhbat and Bulgaa Altangerel for their key roles in negotiating this historic agreement and in achieving its implementation.” Herbert also noted, “This agreement offers huge benefits to Mongolia in reaching out for new FDI around the world, allowing a wider global audience for Mongolia’s ongoing effort to promote predictability, stability and fair treatment to investors and trading partners.” He further said the agreement represented “the continuing commitment of five consecutive Mongolian Prime Ministers from different parties to achieve greater openness and transparency.”
The United States and Mongolia signed a Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA) on July 15, 2004, creating a United States-Mongolia Council on Trade and Investment that considers a wide range of issues that include, but are not limited to, intellectual property rights, labor, environmental matters, non-tariff barriers, investment and transparency. Through the Council, the two countries have established an ongoing dialogue to help remove impediments to trade. The next TIFA meeting will be in Washington DC at a date yet to be determined this spring.
The transparency agreement with Mongolia represents the first time that the United States has concluded a stand-alone agreement addressing transparency in matters related to international trade and investment. Previously, the United States had only negotiated transparency commitments as part of broader agreements, such as free trade agreements (FTA). Negotiating a stand-alone agreement with Mongolia offered an opportunity to build concretely on cooperation between the United States and Mongolia under the existing TIFA.
For the full 11 page text of the U.S.-Mongolia Transparency Agreement, go to: https://ustr.gov/…/US-Mongolia%20Transparency%20Agreement-E…
For copies of the letters signed and exchanged on January 18, go to: https://ustr.gov/…/Mongolia%20Transparency%20Agreement%20EI…
For the full 4 page text of the 2004 TIFA Agreement, go to: https://ustr.gov/…/US-Mongolia%20TIFA%20English%20Version.p…...
Argentine footballer Carlos Tevez has arrived in Shanghai to play for a local professional club. Shanghai Shenhua reportedly offered him about 40 million dollars a year, the highest annual pay for a soccer star.
More than 2,000 fans welcomed Tevez at an airport in Shanghai in China on Thursday. He responded by waving a hand and smiling.
Tevez signed a 2-year deal with the Chinese Super League club last month. The former Argentina national team striker has played for such European clubs as Manchester United and Juventus.
China has been working to strengthen the abilities of its footballers as it seeks to host a FIFA World Cup tournament.
Clubs in the Chinese league have been offering big money to attract foreign players.
Another Shanghai-based club reportedly signed Oscar of the Brazilian national team last month in a deal worth about 26 million dollars a year.
In response, the Chinese Football Association announced on Monday that it will reduce the number of foreign players allowed in a game by one, starting this season.