What's News: August, 19 2015

Medical workers paying tribute to the people who died in the Tianjin explosions at a ceremony yesterday to mark the seventh day after the disaster.
Medical workers paying tribute to the people who died in the Tianjin explosions at a ceremony yesterday to mark the seventh day after the disaster.PHOTO: REUTERS


Suspect in Bangkok blast

The Thai authorities are hunting a man suspected to be behind Monday's deadly explosion at Bangkok's Erawan shrine. The man was seen on CCTV footage leaving a bag at the shrine. Meanwhile, a second bomb, said to be similar to the one used at the shrine, exploded in the water yesterday at a pier on the Chao Phraya River, next to the Shangri La hotel.


Ex-defence chief joins politics

Outgoing Chief of Defence Force Ng Chee Meng confirmed yesterday that he will enter politics "with the blessings of my family". Sources believe he is likely to stand as an election candidate for the PAP in Pasir Ris-Punggol GRC. 


Suu Kyi backs Speaker

Myanmar's political forces are realigning again. Yesterday, Nobel laureate and opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi said her party would ally with House Speaker Shwe Mann. The move comes after President Thein Sein dramatically purged Mr Shwe and his allies from the ruling party last week.


China's firefighting force under scrutiny

The inexperience and relative youth of China's firefighting force has come under scrutiny after a record number died in the Tianjin blast last week. Most of those who died were aged between 19 and 23, leading experts to call for more specialist training and to make firefighting a more viable professional career. 


Currency war: Fear overstated

China's move last week to devalue the yuan has drawn much bad press, sparking talk of competitive devaluation, or currency wars. This is an overreaction. What the Chinese did was to bring the controlled yuan more in line with market forces, writes Economic Affairs columnist Linda Lim.


Nurturing entrepreneurship

Singapore has climbed up the ranks in entrepreneurship, thanks to the Government's push and angel investors. But what more can be done? Have an independently run venture fund with successful serial entrepreneurs as fund managers, suggests writer Arcot Desai Narasimhalu. 


Abs-free Abercrombie & Fitch

Shirtless hunks no longer stand at the door of the Abercrombie & Fitch store on Orchard Road. The American casual wear brand is moving away from its controversial marketing gimmicks and has told The Straits Times that “store associates will not be hired based on body type or physical attractiveness”.


Woman's appeal turned down

A woman who asked for written grounds for an interim judgment in her lawsuit was turned down by the Court of Appeal.

The court said it had no duty to issue written grounds in every case, and that she was using the appeal to have the dispute reheard.


Aspial launching retail bonds

Jewellery firm Aspial Corporation today launches five-year bonds in the retail market with a sparkling annual payout of 5.25 per cent.

In selling $75 million of bonds, Aspial is braving investor concerns that rising interest rates will erode their appeal - along with competition from soon-to-be-launched Singapore Savings Bonds.


It's Bubka or Coe

Either Sergey Bubka or Sebastian Coe will become president of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) today, after a vote in Beijing. The winner must face the challenge of dealing with widespread doping allegations involving hundreds of athletes.


Zouk moving out with a bang

Zouk and its fans will be saying farewell to its iconic Jiak Kim Street premises over four months, from next month to December, with a series of more than 20 parties. The events include the last Halloween party on Oct 31, the last Christmas Eve party on Dec 24 and the last New Year's party on Dec 31 at the old venue, where the club has been situated since 1991. Zouk will move to Clarke Quay next year. 

What it should have been

Yesterday's report, "Ill-fated plane has $661m in cash aboard", stated that there was US$470 million (S$661 million) on the plane when the sum was in fact US$470,000 (S$661,000). We are sorry for the error.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 19, 2015, with the headline 'What's News: August, 19 2015'. Print Edition | Subscribe