June 7th, 2012
02:12 PM GMT
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Yangon, Myanmar (CNN) - Myanmar has been closed off to most of the world for the last 50 years. But as its government continues down a road of reform, Myanmar is emerging as the missing link between China and India, with investors wondering if it’s time to re-enter the country.

A half century of military rule meant economic isolation for Myanmar, which saw it sink from being one of the most prosperous countries in Asia to one of the poorest. But economic reforms are happening in tandem with political reforms and the new civilian government is keen to prove to the world that the country is open for business and is no longer such a risky investment.

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June 7th, 2012
08:54 AM GMT
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Hong Kong (CNN) - Beijing has clamped down on information once publicly available on listed and state-owned companies, hurting the effort of Western investors and companies to gauge whether to invest in - or short-sell - Chinese firms.

First reported by the International Financial Law Review, the State Administration of Industry and Commerce now requires company permission before accessing records such as financial reports and shareholder information.

Companies that sell credit reports - which give companies a quick read on the background of the firm they are considering doing business with - have been hindered, said Peter Humphrey, managing director of ChinaWhys, an international business risk advisory firm in Beijing.
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June 6th, 2012
03:50 AM GMT
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(CNN) – No more "sunny days sweeping the clouds away" in Pakistan as its version of ‘”Sesame Street” gets its funding cut due to fraud charges, according to Reuters.

The United States has withdrawn funding for the Pakistani version of the American children’s television series known for its educational content and colorful puppets.  The U.S. Agency for International Aid received reports of corruption charges on the production company, Rafi Peer Theatre Workshop, through an anti-fraud hotline, according to U.S. State Department spokesman Mark Toner. Exact details of the graft weren’t provided.

The show, which began airing six months ago, features Elmo with a cast of local characters. The funding cut comes just six weeks after the U.S. Ambassador Cameron Munter visited the set of “Sim Sim Hamara,” the Pakistani name for the series, “to reaffirm the U.S. Government’s commitment to children’s education in Pakistan,” according to a USAID press release.
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June 5th, 2012
08:08 AM GMT
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Hong Kong (CNN) – China is drafting plans on how to deal with the financial fallout if Greece leaves the eurozone and its economic implications for Beijing’s largest trading partner, according to state-run media.

"The government is working on plans for the worst-case scenario of Greece leaving the eurozone later this year," Wang Haifeng, director of international economics at the Institute for International Economic Research, told state-run China Daily Tuesday.

China Daily quotes unnamed sources as saying the ministries of finance and commerce will examine the potential impact of a Greek exit on exchange rate, capital flows and trade.
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June 4th, 2012
06:58 AM GMT
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Editor’s note: Outlook is CNN's in-depth look at business climates around the world. To August 12, 2012, we’re focusing on Singapore.

Asia’s latest discount airliner takes to the skies Monday, with its inaugural flight from Singapore to Sydney.

Launched by Singapore Airlines, no-frills Scoot has already sold more than 100,000 tickets, according to The Straits Times. In its first year, it will offer flights on four Boeing 777 aircraft, linking Singapore with nearby countries, including Australia and China. Currently, tickets are available to the Australian cities of Sydney and Goldcoast, as well as Bangkok and Tianjin, China.  FULL POST

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Filed under: Air industryBusinessJapanOutlook SingaporeTravel industry


June 1st, 2012
07:26 AM GMT
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(CNN) – Salarimen, throw on your Hawaiian shirts: it’s that time of year again in Japan.  “Super Cool Biz,” the Ministry of Environment’s annual energy reduction campaign, officially launches Friday across the country.

To reduce electricity use in corporate workplaces, Super Cool Biz encourages office workers to eschew their usual black suits for lighter clothing, including Hawaiian shirts, polo shirts, T-shirts, jeans, and sandals.

The campaign has been an inadvertent boon to clothing retailers, who have not only increased their stock of these items, but also specially designed garments for the season. FULL POST

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Filed under: Business


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