Morning Minutes: What will make headlines, Jan 5, 2016

The European Central Bank headquarters in Frankfurt.
The European Central Bank headquarters in Frankfurt. PHOTO: REUTERS

Good morning! Morning Minutes is a round-up of stories that will break on Tuesday, Jan 5, and which we think you'd be interested in.

It appears on weekdays, available by 7am.

European Central Bank to announce inflation data

The European Central Bank will announce its inflation data for December, as analysts estimate the bank to miss its 2 per cent target for a fourth year in 2016. December data is set to show inflation at 0.4 per cent year on year, up from 0.2 per cent in November. While officials were predicting an uptick in the coming months, a renewed drop in oil prices looks likely to at least partly thwart those forecasts.
A weak economic recovery, demographic decline and slumping energy costs mean a sustained return to 2 per cent inflation level isn’t forecast before the end of 2017, analysts said. 

Syrian National Coalition President Khaled Khoja to visit China


Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi will meet SNC president Khaled Khoja as Beijing seeks to deepen ties with all sides in the Syrian conflict. PHOTO: AFP

The head of the Western-backed opposition Syrian National Coalition (SNC) will visit China from today (Jan 5) to Friday (Jan 8) for talks on a ceasefire and a political settlement to the Syrian conflict. SNC president Khaled Khoja will meet with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi as Beijing seeks to deepen ties with all sides in the conflict. China has repeatedly called for a political resolution and warned that military action cannot end the crisis. Mr Khoja's visit comes two weeks after Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moualem visited China. 

Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to visit Sri Lanka


Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif at the World Climate Change Conference 2015 on Nov 30, 2015. PHOTO: AFP

Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is on a three-day visit in Sri Lanka during which an agreement on countering money laundering and terrorism financing is expected to be signed. Mr Sharif was welcomed Monday (Jan 4) by Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe on the visit which is aimed at strengthening relations between the two south Asian nations. Mr Sharif, who is accompanied by a high-powered delegation, will hold bilateral discussions with Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena and other officials today (Jan 5).