LUXEMBOURG: EU finance ministers agreed on the broad outlines of a eurozone budget early Friday, France’s finance minister said, a key reform pushed by Paris that was scaled back amid deep resistance by the Netherlands. “We did tonight what we had set out to do: we’ve created a genuine eurozone budget,“ Bruno Le Maire said after more than 12 hours of talks. “For the first time, we have created an operational budget that will help eurozone countries to converge and become more competitive. It’s a breakthrough,“ he told AFP. “For the first time, we will start thinking about the future as a coherent bloc and coordinating our economic policies,“ he added. The spokesman for the President of the Eurogroup Mario Centeno in a tweet welcomed the deal reached by the ministers adding that the details would be announced at a press conference later on Friday. French President Emmanuel Macron had championed the hard won budget, seen by many as … [Read more...] about EU ministers agree to Macron-backed eurozone budget: minister
Greece economic crisis
ATHENS: Constantina Kuneva was a little-known cleaner and union activist from Bulgaria struggling to get by in Greece when she suffered a horrific acid attack near her home just before Christmas 2008.While she never fully recovered from her injuries, she did manage to rebuild her life, to the point that she has just completed a five-year term in the European Parliament.What she witnessed in that role has her worried about what she sees as a wave of anti-worker conservative legislation reaching Greek shores as the country struggles to recover from economic crisis.Back in 2008, Kuneva was working to improve working conditions for cleaners as general secretary of the Athens association of cleaners.An unknown assailant poured acid on her face and down her throat, an attack believed to be linked to her union activities.She lost sight in one eye and suffered serious damage to her vocal chords and other internal organs. She was hospitalised for months and underwent additional treatment … [Read more...] about Greek labour icon fears for worker rights after July vote
ATHENS: Battered by the crisis that ravaged the rest of Greece, Athens will have a new mayor on Sunday (Jun 2) and a challenge to reverse the fallout from the country's long recession.Across the city, the damage from the economic slowdown is still evident: abandoned or dilapidated buildings, shuttered shops, broken sidewalks, and wide pockets of drug abuse and prostitution.Polls for the second round of Greece's local elections on Sunday see conservative New Democracy candidate Costas Bakoyannis, son of a former mayor, with a lead of over 25 points against leftist government candidate Nassos Iliopoulos.Frontrunner Bakoyannis, whose mother Dora was Athens' first female mayor ahead of the 2004 Olympics, promises to usher in a "new era" by focusing on "the "obvious": "Safety, cleanliness, lighting.""A mayor is not elected to concern himself with world peace. A good mayor for Athens is one... that wakes up the city in the morning and tucks it in at night," the 41-year-old candidate, a … [Read more...] about Battered Athens turnaround a tall order for new mayor
Jakarta. Indonesia, an emerging middle-income country, is already the world's 16th largest economy by gross domestic product and the 10th strongest in terms of purchasing power parity, and a member of the G-20. A number of global consultancy firms and banks have reported that the world's fourth most populous nation, which has charted impressive economic growth since overcoming the Asian financial crisis in 1997-1998, has yet to unleash its true economic potentials, given the country has a large young population, is rich in natural resources and is currently seeing a middle class boom – which has boosted the number of its affluent consumers. Bloomberg reported in January, citing a report from Standard Chartered, that Indonesia could shake up the world's gross domestic product rankings by breaking into the top five in 2030. This is a much more optimistic prediction than the one made in a report by McKinsey in 2012, which said Indonesia … [Read more...] about Can Indonesia Leverage a ‘Golden Moment’ in Its Economy?
SEOUL: Cho Min-kyong boasts an engineering degree from one of South Korea's top universities, a school design award and a near-perfect score in her English proficiency test.But she had all but given up hope of finding a job when all her 10 applications, including one to Hyundai Motor, were rejected in 2016.Help came unexpectedly from neighbouring Japan six months later: Cho got job offers from Nissan Motor and two other Japanese companies after a job fair hosted by the South Korean government to match the country's skilled labour with overseas employers."It's not that I wasn't good enough. There are just too many job seekers like me, that's why everyone just fails," said the 27-year-old, who now works in Atsugi, an hour southwest of Tokyo, as a car seat engineer for Nissan."There are numerous more opportunities outside Korea."Facing an unprecedented job crunch at home, many young South Koreans are now signing up for government-sponsored programmes designed to find overseas positions … [Read more...] about South Korea’s latest big export: Jobless college graduates