BANGKOK: Thai Princess Ubolratana was put forward Friday (Feb 8) as a candidate for prime minister in the March elections, the first time a royal has entered frontline politics - a development the palace later condemned as "highly inappropriate".Her game-changing entrance into Thailand's turbulent political scene - and the displeasure it stirred from her brother, the king - layers on complexity into the coming poll, the first since a 2014 coup.So what do Friday's astonishing events mean for Thai politics?HOW IS THE JUNTA AFFECTED?The moment the princess entered the fray, for the Thai Raksa Chart party, junta chief Prayut Chan-O-Cha looked to be on the ropes.He agreed to be a candidate for premier shortly after her, in a move putting him in direct rivalry with a member of the institution he seized power vowing to defend.But the statement late Friday from the palace condemned the move "to bring" Ubolratana into politics as "highly inappropriate" and "unconstitutional", dimming … [Read more...] about What does Princess Ubolratana’s entry mean for Thai politics?
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President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo's administration has boasted that nearly all households in Indonesia have electricity, saying that the country had reached an electrification ratio of 98.05 percent as of September. However, does this mean that 98.05 percent of the nation’s households enjoy 24-hour electricity for all their electronics like residents in Java’s big cities enjoy? In early January, the ministry’s Twitter account got flooded with angry comments after it told a PLN customer, Lucky, who complained about a 10-hour blackout in Manado, North Sulawesi, that he should be “grateful”. “You should be grateful Pak Lucky that the blackout only lasted 10 hours. [Some of] our brothers and sisters in remote areas can’t even enjoy electricity. Minergi [the ministry account’s administrator] is sure that our friends over at @pln_123 have tried their best. If there are shortcomings, please understand. Thanks,” @KementerianESDM … [Read more...] about Govt says 98.05 percent of households have electricity. What does it mean?
HONG KONG (BLOOMBERG) - US President Donald Trump's surprise trade truce with the European Union has analysts asking, "What does this mean for the trade war with China?" So far there are two very different answers. One camp sees the deal between Mr Trump and European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker to suspend new tariffs while negotiating over trade as a deliberate attempt to mend fences with allies as the United States girds for a protracted dispute with China. "De-escalating the US-EU trade track, and possibly the Nafta trade track in the period ahead, does not mean the US-China trade track is also ripe for an off-ramp," Mr Krishna Guha, vice-chairman at Evercore ISI, wrote in a note. "This is possible, but it is at least as likely that the US is reducing trade tension with its allies in order to improve its leverage and staying power in what we continue to fear will be a prolonged trial of strength with Beijing." Mr Guha said Evercore ISI's base case is there will be no … [Read more...] about What does the apparent Trump-EU trade truce mean for China?
In July, drugmakers Biogen and Eisai announced positive results to its experimental Alzheimer’s drug, known as BAN2401. It was the first time in years that the pharmaceutical industry has had a positive Alzheimer’s trial, and the news sent Biogen skyrocketing. In a phase 2 study of more than 800 patients with early Alzheimer’s disease, those who received the highest dose had a reduction in the proteins associated with the disease and their cognitive decline slowed when compared to the placebo group after 18 months. But a number of questions remain about how well this drug will do in later-stage clinical trials. The search for better treatments for Alzheimer’s disease hasn’t been easy. Alzheimer’s affects more than 5.7 million Americans, a number that’s expected to balloon to 14 million by 2050. There are only four drugs that have been approved to treat the symptoms of the disease, and the most recent … [Read more...] about We’re about to get more information on the first positive Alzheimer’s trial in years — here’s what you need to know
[Update: March 26, 2.37pm]: This article has been updated with a quote from Grab. Ride-hailing firm Uber has sold its Southeast Asian business to rival Grab, which will integrate Uber's ridesharing and food delivery business in the region into Grab's platform. As part of the transaction, Uber would get a 27.5 per cent stake in the combined business. But what does this mean for existing Uber passengers? Here's what we know so far: Uber's ride-hailing service to be consolidated into the Grab app Grab said that nothing will change in the immediate term and operations will continue as usual, as they work to combine the Uber and Grab platforms. It mentioned that passengers "can expect better service with more drivers and transport options available in one app". What this means is that Uber passengers will soon have to use the Grab app to hail a ride within Southeast Asia countries, which includes Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, … [Read more...] about Grab buys over Uber: What does this mean for passengers?