What's News: April 06, 2018

The Philippine island of Boracay has been ordered shut to tourists for six months.
The Philippine island of Boracay has been ordered shut to tourists for six months.PHOTO: NYTIMES


Blow for Malaysian opposition

The Malaysian authorities have ordered former premier Mahathir Mohamad's year-old party to halt its activities. Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia and three other opposition parties in the Pakatan Harapan pact have meanwhile agreed to contest in the polls under the banner of Anwar Ibrahim's Parti Keadilan Rakyat.


US willing to avert trade war

The United States voiced its willingness to negotiate a resolution to an escalating trade fight with China after Beijing's retaliation against proposed US tariffs, even as the Chinese Ambassador to Washington yesterday said it "takes two to tango". Beijing's forceful response raised the prospect of a quickly spiralling dispute.


Boracay in 'state of calamity'

President Rodrigo Duterte is placing Boracay under a "state of calamity" to help tens of thousands of workers affected by his order to close the Philippines' most popular island resort for six months. The government will use some 2 billion pesos (S$50.6 million) to help tide over some 36,000 people, including resort workers and masseuses, who will be displaced.


Casino entry levy in Japan

Japan's future casinos are set to follow Singapore's blueprint with an entry levy imposed on residents, while foreign tourists get free entry. The plan, endorsed by a panel of lawmakers from the ruling Liberal Democratic Party and coalition partner Komeito, also limits the number of casino locations to three for a start.


S'pore in a time of rising risks

Growing United States-China trade tensions and Beijing's own political risks will be particularly challenging for small states with big overseas stakes, says Dr David Skilling.


Grab woos Uber drivers

Drivers who rent cars from Lion City Rentals (LCR) were contacted by ride-hailing app Grab and urged to switch from Uber. They received a text message claiming LCR, whose fleet had an exclusive deal with Uber, "is now GrabRentals' exclusive fleet partner".


'Islands' of solar panels

There may soon be "islands" made up of solar panels floating in Singapore's coastal waters supplying electricity to industrial zones or living areas. The "energy islands" project was one of three launched by the Solar Energy Research Institute of Singapore.


Asean leaders pitch projects

Asean finance ministers yesterday pitched their countries' infrastructure projects and the measures that mitigate the risks for investors. Led by Singapore Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat at the World Bank-Singapore Infrastructure Finance Summit, they called for a collective effort, which would be more efficient in meeting international investors' concerns.


City rocked by attack and loss

Manchester City are on the brink of winning the English Premier League to add to the League Cup for a domestic double. But their bigger European dream of clinching a first Champions League is virtually over after a quarter-final first-leg shock at Liverpool. The Reds have said sorry for an attack on the City team bus, but City players are not blaming the incident for the 0-3 loss.


Inspired by creative childhood

Ms Applelynn Teo's parents were artists and designers who created movie posters and decorated floats for the Chingay parade. That spirit of creativity in her childhood now influences her work as assistant vice-president of design and productions at Banyan Tree Spa and Gallery, while her bag is full of colourful pouches and trinkets.


Hangout with ST

This week, multimedia journalists Alyssa Woo and Hairianto Diman talk about "crispy" chicken rendang, 38 Oxley Road and other online trends. str.sg/hangout07


Living on the moon

Japan is exploring how to build sustainable space colonies, with a primitive model possible by next decade, said its first female astronaut. str.sg/spacetech

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 06, 2018, with the headline 'What's News'. Subscribe