343

Hong Kong Plans To Build One Of The World’s Largest Artificial Islands With $79 Billion Price Tag

New Delhi: To deal with the housing shortage, Hong Kong plans to build one of the world’s largest artificial islands with an eye-watering $79 billion price tag. The government’s HK$624 billion proposal to reclaim 1,000 hectares (2,471 acres) of land around the territory’s largest island, Lantau, has been touted as a solution to the pressing housing shortage in the city, which is notorious as one of the least affordable markets on the planet.

Authorities said they hope to start work on reclaiming land in 2025, with an eye on allowing residents to move to the island in 2032.

The artificial island -- the city’s most expensive infrastructure project to date -- would be four times the cost of building Hong Kong International Airport, which opened on Lantau in 1998, and far outstrip Dubai’s famous palm-tree shaped Palm Jumeirah, which reportedly cost $12 billion to build.

323

Jet Airways Grounds Four More Planes And Likely To Delay Paying Interest On Maturing Debt

New Delhi: Jet Airways Ltd said that it has grounded four more planes and would delay paying interest on maturing debt in a fresh sign of deepening liquidity crisis engulfing the Indian carrier saddled with over $1 billion debt.

India’s second-largest carrier has delayed payments to its pilots, suppliers and lessors for months and defaulted on loans, as it battles intensifying competition, a weak rupee and rising fuel costs. The airline said it will delay paying interest to its debenture holder, due March 19, owing to financial constraints.

Jet did not immediately respond to request for comment on payment-related details. Meanwhile, the airline grounded four more aircraft on Monday, taking the number of planes tied down to 41, or more than a third of its entire fleet.

303

Bad News For Facebook With A Proposal From US Presidential Candidate Elizabeth Warren To Break It Up

New Delhi: Facebook Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg has had a very bad week, even in the context of a very bad year. The week of bad news actually started March 8 with a proposal from US senator and presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren to break up the company. Then there was the longest-ever outage of Facebook’s social network and services, which almost overshadowed news of a criminal investigation into its data-agreements with other companies. Facebook’s technical glitch was resolved just in time for it to post the departure of two key executives, including the one closely linked with the company’s most iconic product. But the ultimate blow came on Friday with the massacre of 50 people in New Zealand, live streamed on Facebook.

The snowball of bad news is catching up with the company. The shares had their worst day in more than two months Friday, falling 2.5 per cent to close at $165.98.

273

Increase In Exports And Lower Imports Of Gold And Petroleum Products Narrows Trade Deficit To $9.6 bn In Feb

New Delhi: According to a data released by the commerce ministry on that marginal 2.44 per cent increase in exports as well as lower imports of gold and petroleum products in February significantly narrowed India’s trade deficit to USD 9.6 billion.

India’s merchandise exports rose to USD 26.67 billion in February from USD 26.03 per cent in the year-ago month mainly on account of higher shipments in sectors such as pharmaceutical, engineering and electronics.

Imports declined by 5.4 per cent to USD 36.26 billion in the last month, narrowing the trade deficit to USD 9.6 billion. The gap between imports and exports was USD 12.3 billion in February 2018, and USD 14.73 billion in January 2019. As per the data, the decline in imports was mainly on account of sharp decline in inward shipments of gold and petroleum products.

252

Wipro Chairman Premji Announces, He Has Increased His Commitment To Philanthropy

New Delhi: IT czar and Wipro promoter Azim Premji has earmarked economic benefits of about 34 per cent of his shares in Wipro, worth Rs 52,750 crore, for his foundation involved in philanthropy. With this, the total value of the endowment corpus, which supports Azim Premji Foundation’s philanthropic activities, contributed by Premji has swelled to a staggering Rs 1.45 lakh crore, which includes 67 per cent of economic ownership of Wipro Ltd, it said.

Wipro Chairman Premji, who is also the chairman of Azim Premji Foundation, announced on Wednesday that he has increased his commitment to philanthropy, by irrevocably renouncing more of his personal assets and earmarking them to the endowment corpus.