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Daily Dispatches – APEC members not finding enough common ground

Not much cooperation right now

Not much cooperation right now

Asia-Pacific leaders are calling for vigilance against protectionism as economic growth slows in parts of the region and completion of a regional trade pact looks likely to be delayed again.

Bloomberg reports that Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) member Malaysia’s Prime Minister Najib Razak said the year-end deadline for the Trans-Pacific Partnership may not be met.

Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong told delegates from other member countries attending a summit in Bali that they must avoid protectionism, even though a number of the region’s policy makers want to boost their economies via new markets for goods and services as an uneven global recovery and volatility in financial markets constrain growth.
Ninemsn says that Indonesia’s President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono urged Asian business and political leaders to do more to counter the economic headwinds confronting developing countries by dismantling barriers to trade and investment.
Yudhoyono said while advanced economies were speeding up after a gradual recovery from the global recession, emerging economies where slowing, dragged down by trade deficits, capital flight and weakening currencies.

The Financial Times reports that surging business confidence in rich countries has put the global economy “back on track” to resume a steady recovery, according to the latest Brookings Institution-Financial Times tracking index.

The improvement in outlook has come as a surprise over the summer, but the relatively upbeat message from economic data over the past few months is vulnerable to many threats on the horizon which could again kill the emerging confidence.

Opposition to Singapore’s immigration policy runs out of steam

A protest movement against Singapore’s immigration policies drew its smallest crowd at a weekend demonstration, reports the Wall Street Journal.

Saturday’s protest, the third organised by unemployment counsellor Gilbert Goh, drew at its peak about 500 people who turned up to support criticism of government plans to keep importing foreigners.

Political analysts say the decline suggests recent government remedies may have assuaged some anger.

VTB’s plans for Asia

VTB Capital has long-term plans across a number of financial services segments, including private equity JVs, expanding the distribution of securities to Asian investors, and onshore banking in China, India and Vietnam, according to a report in Finance Asia.

AXA Investment managers leave Singapore

Asian Investor reports that the firm has shifted its fixed income team to Hong Kong to centralise its investment capabilities in the city. Another five staff will be added to that office.



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