What's News: April 14, 2018


Brakes on Grab-Uber merger

In a move "to keep the market open and contestable", the Competition and Consumer Commission of Singapore has issued orders to stall ride-hailing group Grab's takeover of rival Uber's operations here. The watchdog's "interim measures directions" will stay in place until it completes its investigation.


Cabinet reshuffle expected

A Cabinet reshuffle is expected to be announced this month, which will see younger ministers being given new portfolios to prepare them for bigger roles, say MPs and analysts. When Parliament resumes on May 7, three veteran ministers are expected to step down from the front bench, say sources. They are Trade and Industry (Trade) Minister Lim Hng Kiang; Manpower Minister Lim Swee Say; and Communications and Information Minister Yaacob Ibrahim.



Manila to probe data breach

The Philippines will investigate reports that Cambridge Analytica, a British consulting firm at the centre of a data mining scandal linked to the 2016 United States presidential election, harvested information on about 1.2 million Filipino Facebook users. Meanwhile, President Rodrigo Duterte (above) denied getting help from the firm to get elected in 2016.


Australia's rubbish problem

China's ban on waste imports has left Australia with mounting piles of rubbish but raised hopes of boosting the local recycling sector and creating a "circular economy". According to research by Blue Environment, a consultancy firm, about 30 per cent of Australia's waste exports - as much as 1.3 million tonnes each year - goes to China.


Benefits of setting term limits

It can be hard for leaders to let go, so setting term limits can ease the transition process, says Mr Willie Cheng, chairman of the Singapore Institute of Directors.


Inmates get youth award

A total of 115 inmates from Tanah Merah Prison and Institution A4 received the National Youth Achievement Award. The programme aims to encourage young people to develop personal qualities of self-reliance, perseverance and responsibility to themselves and the community.


Merits of Asia opening up

Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam said Asia has to keep opening up economically and that it should not take the trade friction between the United States and China as a sign to start turning inwards.


Faster S'pore-Chongqing link

It now takes about a week to transport goods between Singapore and Chongqing. Both cities hope to reduce this to as little as five days, which would make it easier to ship fresh produce. Minister in the Prime Minister's Office Chan Chun Sing, who is on a visit to China, suggested information about cargo could be sent ahead of time to minimise Customs delays.


Its Reds vs Roma in semi-final

Liverpool star Mohamed Salah will face his former club Roma in the semi-finals of the Champions League, a repeat of the 1984 European Cup final that the English side won on penalties.

The other semi-final will pit defending champions Real Madrid against Bayern Munich, which named former player Niko Kovac to succeed Jupp Heynckes as their new coach next season.



Go electric, go green

As the first mass-market electric car available in showrooms here, the Hyundai Ioniq Electric (above) more than meets the mark. With most of Singapore's electricity being generated from natural gas, driving this spacious battery-powered fastback is relatively green.


'Bye-bye' tax

Travellers leaving Japan will soon have to pay a "sayonara tax" of 1,000 yen (S$12.20). But it is not the only country that has a departure tax. http://str.sg/opZR


Night owl or early bird?

People who stay up late are more likely to die younger than those who rise and set with the sun, says a British survey. Find out why. http://str.sg/opZe

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 14, 2018, with the headline 'What's News'. Print Edition | Subscribe