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Edition: CHINAASIAUSAEUROPEAFRICA

China's home price decline narrows

China's real estate market continued to weaken but with narrowing price drops in March.

China urges speedy IMF quota reform

IMF members are frustrated with the long-delayed 2010 quota reform of the fund, said PBOC governor Zhou Xiaochuan.

More stocks eligible for short sales

China's securities regulator is considering more tools to help investors hedge risks.

HK: Parallel trading activities rise

Parallel traders are seizing final chance to do business before permits expire.

China's Li urges banks to boost lending

Premier Li Keqiang has called for additional fee cuts and more loans for small businesses.

BIT talks: China, US to exchange negative lists

China and the US are expected to exchange negative lists of bilateral investment treaty.

Pudong marks 25 dramatic years

The Pudong New Area has risen from rural farmland to an engine for economic development.

HK: Starry Lee is 1st DAB chairwoman

Lee says the first objective is to do better in District Council and LegCo elections.

Opinion

Our police performed impressively last year

Police officers were praised for the admirable way they maintained law and order in Hong Kong by use of minimum of force.

HK must strengthen risk management procedures

The most exciting financial news over the past two weeks was the extraordinary trading on the stock market.

AIIB complementary to existing institutions

Li said the AIIB is not meant to reinvent the wheel.

'Smuggling’ will never die

Mainland authorities have decided to curtail the practice known as “parallel trading” in Hong Kong, but called “smuggling” on the other...

Square dancing doesn't deserve stigma

It's time to free square dancing of the bad name for it refreshes the body and mind both.

Nation

Xi urges Yemen resolution in call with Saudi king

Efforts should be stepped up to seek a political solution to the crisis in Yemen, President Xi Jinping told Saudi Arabia's King Salman.

Pudong marks 25 dramatic years

The Pudong New Area has risen from rural farmland to become an engine for economic and social development.

Xi to visit Pakistan, Indonesia

Chinese President Xi Jinping will visit Pakistan and attend meetings in Indonesia next week.

AIIB 'won't be used for US$46b Pakistan deal'

Money from both countries will finance the US$46 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor instead.

Women who marry gay men suffer abuse

Most Chinese women who unwittingly marry gay men suffer a wide range of abuse from their husbands.

Ignorance compounds cancer threat

China's high mortality rate is the result of a lack of awareness that results in late detection of the disease.

Taoism helped Solar Impulse 2

Study in China taught lesson that unity can be found in opposites.

HK

Parallel trading activities rise

Parallel traders are seizing final chance to do business before permits expire.

Kuaidi Dache hits snags in HK foray

The mainland's taxi-hailing apps has run into problems in trying to replicate its success in Hong Kong.

Zalora 'popping up' on the bricks

Zalora is opening a pop-up store in Causeway Bay, hoping to help the company grab a bigger slice of the city’s e-commerce market.

HK stocks still attractive options: Fund

Dual-listed stocks on Chinese exchanges are about 25% more expensive than those in HK, according to the Hang Seng China AH Premium Index.

Focus HK

Mainland hot money a boon for yuan bonds

Dim sum bonds sparkle as Hong Kong lenders trim renminbi deposit rates.

Seeking a golden sunset

In a bid to reform the MPF system, regulators in Hong Kong have proposed a default ‘core fund’ to cut hidden costs and risks, as well as boost returns. But more must be done to bolster autonomy for MPF members.

Facing the music

Zhang Xian is at the forefront of women conductors making their mark internationally. Chitralekha Basu met the first female director of an Italian orchestra in the lead-up to her show at HK’s Cultural Centre Concert Hall tonight.

Asia

Australia arrests 5 teens for alleged terror plot

Five Australian teenagers were arrested on suspicion of plotting a terrorist attack at a Veterans' Day ceremony.

Afghanistan suicide blast kills at least 33

A suicide bomb blast in Afghanistan's eastern city of Jalalabad killed at least 33 people and injured more than 100.

Saddam deputy killed: Iraq officials

It is believed that government forces have killed Saddam Hussein's former deputy who later allied himself with Islamic State militants.

Thai charter ready for review

A draft of Thailand's new constitution, written to reduce the power of major political parties and keep politicians in check, was submitted to an advisory council for review on Friday.

Awash in easy money

Asian households are piling up record debts but problems may arise when rate cycle turns.

Going wet and wild in Kowloon City

'Little Thailand' bursts into revelry to mark the Songkran festival but not everything is cause for celebration.

Asia Weekly

Business

China, US to exchange negative lists of BIT talks

China and the US are expected to exchange negative lists of bilateral investment treaty (BIT) "this month or next month."

Li urges banks to boost lending

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang has called for additional fee cuts and more loans for small businesses.

Property market slides with narrowing price drops

China's real estate market continued to weaken but with narrowing price drops in March.

Eye on Asia

India's tigers may not be burning bright

Independent scientists say a 30% in tiger number in just four years doesn't make sense.

Jakarta traffic stops & starts for another decade

Millions of Jakarta commuters will have to struggle through the world's most congested traffic for almost another decade.

Fighter jet makers eye Indian riches

Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced last week that India would buy 36 French Rafale jets for an estimated US$4.3 billion.

Sport

Marbury applies for Chinese green card

Former NBA star Stephon Marbury has applied for a Chinese "green card", or permanent residence permit.

Nadal sets up semifinal clash against Djokovic

Eight-time champion Rafael Nadal booted out fellow Spaniard David Ferrer to reach semifinals of Monte Carlo Masters on Friday.

Manny hits back at 'reckless' jab

Manny Pacquiao laughed when told the defense-minded Floyd Mayweather Jr. had called him "a very reckless fighter".

Straddling two worlds

KPMG partner is an old China hand who wants to help his fellow Australians fully embrace the benefits of Chinese investments.

Trade pioneer

Xu Ningning has played a crucial role in creating successful China-ASEAN business opportunities for over two decades.

Off the beaten track

From logged jungle to abandoned farms, Malaysian property tycoon finds opportunities in areas that others overlook.

Life Style

Villagers grab online bargains at last

Now villagers in Yunshe, a village in Guizhou province, can order anything from small items to heavy household goods.

Guests try to untangle hotel names

Want to stay at a Hyatt? Take your pick. There's Hyatt Regency, Park Hyatt, Grand Hyatt, Hyatt House, Hyatt Place and, coming soon, Hyatt Centric.

Quirky News

Scientist volunteers for head transplant

Having suffered from a rare muscle wasting disease for most of his life, the 30-year-old decided to give it a shot.

Cambodia breaks record for Madison dance

Cambodia on Wednesday broke Guinness World Record for the largest Madison dance, a judge announced.

British polls: A taste for the absurd

In an election that will shape the destiny of the United Kingdom, anguish over how to eat bacon sandwiches and hot dogs has brought a note of absurdity to the battle for Downing Street.

Video

A man's world

Pole-dance used to be regarded as a women's preserve. But, Li Bing of the Chinese mainland has proved male dancers can be equally, if not more, captivating.

Expert calls for protection for retirees

Nelson Chow, who wrote the latest retirement protection report, believes the introduction of a universal pension scheme will improve the government’s popularity, Joseph Li writes

Strike a balance in standard working hours

It is too early to talk about standard working hour legislation, said chairman of the Standard Working Hours Committee Leong Che-hung.

Special

Innovation in tourism: Macao shows the way

The final of Macao @ 15, one of the region’s largest college student business presentation competitions, took place last weekend.

Roundtable

Reeling in the crowds for regional films

Asia’s growing movie industry is set to benefit from a new generation of audiences along the New Silk Road and beyond.

Keeping movie goals within reach is key

Forum hears how regional productions must set sights on success in neighboring markets before eyeing Hollywood.