Good morning! Morning Minutes is a round-up of stories that will break on Thursday, Aug 18, and which we think you'd be interested in.
It appears on weekdays, available by 7am.
Advanced radiation therapy for cancer
The National Cancer Centre Singapore (NCCS) has awarded a contract to Hitachi Asia to provide a proton beam therapy system for its Proton Therapy Centre. It will be the first centre to offer the advanced form of radiation therapy in South-east Asia.
The system, which uses the latest pencil-beam scanning technology, accurately targets the cancer tumour in the patient's body, sparing healthy tissues and organs around the tumour.
This means minimal radiation exposure for the patient. Such treatments are beneficial in cases of deep-seated tumour that is surrounded by critical organs. More details about the system will be announced today (Aug 18).
Hearing in Guantanamo for JI leader
Indonesian terrorist leader Hambali will face a hearing on Thursday (Aug 18) by the Guantanamo Periodic Review Board, which evaluates the continued detention of prisoners in the US military prison.
The former operations chief of the Jemaah Islamiah terror network has been held at the Guantanamo Bay detention centre in Cuba since 2006.
Japan to announce trade figures today
Japan will announce trade figures today (Aug 18), two days after disappointing second quarter GDP data which showed slowing growth weighed down by weak domestic demand and stagnant exports.
Data earlier this week had GDP showing just 0.2 per cent growth, way short of expectations of 0.7 per cent.
There is a likelihood of a second straight month of trade surplus, as analysts expect new data to show a fall in imports and exports in July due to lacklustre global demand and a strong yen.
Growth in Philippines economy expected in second quarter
The Philippines economy may have grown 6.7 per cent in the April-June quarter from a year ago, making it one of the Asia’s fastest growing economies in the second quarter - data to be released today (Aug 18) is expected to show.
Economy grew thanks largely to election spending and accelerated public and private investments ahead of the May 9 polls, analysts say. However, the country may not totally be immune from softening global demand as second quarter growth likely took a slight hit from sluggish exports.