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North, South Korea to march together under one flag at Winter Olympics

Seoul (CNN)North and South Korean athletes will march together at the Winter Olympics opening ceremony under a unified flag, the South said Wednesday, in a diplomatic breakthrough following days of talks between the two countries. North Korea will also send around 230 supporters to cheer on its athletes. A smaller delegation of North Korean athletes and supporters will attend the Paralympics, the ministry said. The Korean Unification Flag features a blue silhouette of the peninsula and outlying islands. The two countries have marched under the flag before, in rare shows…

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Asia Stocks Rise as Earnings Awaited, Won Weakens: Markets Wrap

Asian equities edged higher ahead of the start of the region’s earnings season this week, with investors betting that the outlook for economic growth and profits is strong enough to support record-high stock prices. The Korean won fell. Shares from Sydney to Seoul climbed with markets in Tokyo closed Monday for a holiday. Samsung Electronics Co. and a slew of Japanese retailers and manufacturers are among companies giving profit updates this week. South Korea’s currency reversed gains as authorities said they would take action to stem one-sided moves in the won. Oil…

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North Korea accepts offer from South to meet for peace talks

Seoul, South Korea (CNN)North Korea has accepted South Korea’s proposal for official talks, in what will be the first high-level contact to take place between the two countries in more than two years. The person-to-person talks will be held January 9th — one day after North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s birthday — at the Peace House, located on the South Korean side of the so-called truce village of Panmunjom, located in the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) between the two nations, Baik said. The hotline linking North and South Korea White…

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Singapore’s Economy Grows Faster Than Estimated

Singapore’s economy finished 2017 on a solid footing, allowing more room for policy makers as they consider raising taxes and tightening monetary policy this year. Growth was higher taxes when the government releases its budget on Feb. 19, with one option being an increase in the goods and services tax. The Monetary Authority of Singapore may also shift to a tightening stance after government and the central bank forecast GDP growth of 1.5 to 3.5 percent this year. A stabilizing labor market and recharged property market is setting up a…

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China to Overtake U.S. Economy by 2032 as Asian Might Builds

The growing leapfrogging the U.K. and France next year to become the world’s fifth-biggest economy in dollar terms. It will advance to third place by 2027, moving ahead of Germany. In 2032, three of the four largest economies will be Asian — China, India and Japan — and, by that time, China will also have overtaken the U.S. to hold the No. 1 spot. India’s advance won’t stop there, according to the CEBR, which sees it taking the top place in the second half of the century. Also by 2032,…

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Asia’s Richest Banker Spots a Once-in-a-Lifetime Opportunity

For India, it’s a $207 billion mess, a pile-up of bad loans years in the making that’s dragging on growth. For the nation’s wealthiest banker, it’s the kind of opportunity that very rarely presents itself. What has billionaire Kotak Mahindra Bank Ltd., in an interview. “Through this you could actually get assets that would give disproportionate returns for long periods of time.” Funds controlled by Kotak Mahindra are looking at deals involving the assets and debts of some of the first 12 companies going through the bankruptcy courts, Kotak said. Industries…

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Qatar Airways Buys Cathay Pacific Stake for $662 Million

Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd., a deal that would help it gain a foothold in the world’s second-biggest aviation market. The Middle Eastern carrier will buy 9.6 percent of Cathay from Hong Kong-based Kingboard Chemical Holdings Ltd. and related companies for HK$5.16 billion ($662 million), according to a filing to the city’s stock exchange Monday. Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker, confirming the deal, said the investment "further supports Qatar Airways investment strategy.” Shares of Cathay fell as much as 4.9 percent to HK$12.56 on Monday, the biggest intraday drop in…

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Razer CEO to Become a Billionaire With Li Ka-shing Backing

After raising funds from Asia’s biggest investors, including Hong Kong tycoon Razer Inc. is turning to the market for an initial public offering that will make its co-founder Bloomberg Billionaires Index. Razer’s plan to list shares comes amid robust growth in the global gaming market, which is expected to reach $160 billion by 2021, a 52 percent jump from last year, according to data from Euromonitor. The company said in its

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Singapore Will Stop Increasing Car Numbers From February 2018

Singapore, among the world’s most expensive places to own a vehicle, will stop increasing the total number of cars on its roads next year. The government will cut the annual growth rate for cars and motorcycles to zero from 0.25 percent starting in February, the transport regulator said on Monday. “In view of land constraints and competing needs, there is limited scope for further expansion of the road network," the Land Transport Authority said in a statement on its

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Singapore-Listed Noble Group Will Sell Its Oil Trading Business

Embattled commodity trader total net loss of $1.1 billion and $1.25 billion for the three months to September, and that lenders had agreed to a two-month extension of a waiver related to a revolving-credit facility. Noble Group, once Asia’s largest commodity trader, has been rushing to sell its oil business to pay back lenders in a struggle to survive. The shares have sunk 78 percent this year amid concerns that the company will default. Trading was halted on Friday at 38 Singapore cents, 2.6 percent down from the previous close, pending the…

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Family held hostage by Taliban freed after 5 years

(CNN)An American woman, her Canadian husband and their three children have been freed from captivity by Pakistani security forces, nearly five years after being taken hostage by the Taliban-affiliated Haqqani Network in Afghanistan. The couple, American Caitlan Coleman, 31, and her Canadian husband, Joshua Boyle, 33, were kidnapped in 2012 while they were traveling as tourists in Afghanistan and were held in captivity since. Parents of freed Canadian hostages speak

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Vladimir Putin warns world faces ‘global catastrophe’ over North Korea

(CNN)Russian President Vladimir Putin has warned that the escalating crisis over North Korea’s weapons program risks developing into a “global catastrophe” with mass casualties. He warned that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has calculated that the survival of his regime depends on its development of nuclear weapons. Kim had seen how western intervention in Iraq had ended in the overthrow of Saddam Hussein after which the country was ravaged by war, Putin warned, and was determined not to suffer the same fate. “The country was demolished and Saddam Hussein…

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