What's News: July 15, 2015

Iranians holding national flags as they celebrate their country's nuclear deal in the streets of Tehran.
Iranians holding national flags as they celebrate their country's nuclear deal in the streets of Tehran. PHOTO: EPA


Iran nuclear deal reached

After an 18-day negotiating marathon, Iran came to an agreement with world powers yesterday to limit its nuclear programme in exchange for lifting sanctions. Opinions were divided: Some hailed it as a major diplomatic achievement, while Israel called it a "historic mistake".


Iseas to be renamed

The Institute of Southeast Asian Studies (Iseas) will be renamed the Iseas-Yusof Ishak Institute on Aug 12 - the 105th anniversary of the birth of Singapore's first president. The Bill for the name change was passed in Parliament yesterday.


Nazir may create 'kingmaker'

Mr Nazir Razak, brother of Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, is planning a political platform that could be a kingmaker at the next general election.

Sources report that he may link his planned NGO with Parti Islam SeMalaysia moderates who were defeated in the Islamic party's internal polls last month.


A stall at a traditional market in Banda Aceh. Consumers are cutting back amid perceived weakness in the economy. PHOTO: EUROPEAN PRESSPHOTO AGENCY


'Perception' of economy keeping Indonesian shoppers away

It is the festive season in Indonesia, but consumers are cutting back. Retail sales, as well as that of vehicles and appliances, are down. But economists say a large part of the pessimism about the economy is perception, and the government needs to accelerate spending to stimulate confidence.

German SMEs expanding here

The numbers of small and medium-sized German companies here are poised to grow. More of them are expected to venture to Singapore to take advantage of opportunities rising from the Asean Economic Community, which will take effect by year-end.


Remittance role for S'pore

Cross-border remittance added up to US$583 billion (S$791 billion) last year. With five of the top 10 recipient nations in its hinterland, Singapore should develop a gateway to promote phone-based remittances, write Tan Swee Liang, S.N. Venkat and Anil Kishora.


Gambling instead of driving

Demand spikes on Fridays and rainy days make it hard for people to get a cab. But a lesser-known factor also chokes up supply - gambling. Observers say up to 10 per cent of cabbies are gamblers who are often seen at gambling spots instead of plying the road.


Noble defends its buybacks

Noble Group boss Yusuf Alireza has defended the firm's recent share buybacks and vowed that it would not dance to the tune of short-sellers. He told The Straits Times that the bout of buybacks over recent months was aimed at bolstering shareholder value.


Eyes on young gun Spieth

With Rory McIlroy grounded by injury, attention has switched to Jordan Spieth as the young gun who can lift the British Open golfing trophy this week.

While the American is on a hot run of form, there is one potential problem though - he has played on the Old Course only once.


Violet Oon's 2nd restaurant

Cooking doyenne Violet Oon and her two children are opening a second, larger restaurant - this time in town.

While they cannot disclose its location, it is reportedly going to be at the National Gallery.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 15, 2015, with the headline 'What's News: July 15, 2015'. Print Edition | Subscribe