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( China Daily ) Updated: 2013-02-01 07:59:35

Wanxiang may help supplier of recent buyout target

Wanxiang Group Co, one of China's biggest parts makers, has said it is "in its interests" to help Fisker Automotive Inc, a luxury plug-in hybrid manufacturer, which is one of the main customers of a bankrupt battery supplier Wanxiang is buying. However, President Pin Ni declined to say whether Wanxiang will invest in Fisker. Wanxiang received approval earlier this week from the Committee on Foreign Investment in the US to buy most of the assets of A123 Systems Inc, the battery maker backed with US government funds that filed for bankruptcy in October.

Shanghai has fastest Internet speed in China

Web users in Shanghai enjoy the fastest connection speeds in China, according to ChinaCache International Holdings Ltd, a Nasdaq-listed Internet service provider. In the fourth quarter of 2012, the average connection speed in China reached about 2.59 Mb/s, compared with 2.31 Mb/s in the third quarter, results of a speed ranking survey by ChinaCache showed. Shanghai topped the list with an average connection speed of 4 Mb/s, the only region above 4 Mb/s nationwide. Fujian and Zhejiang provinces came in a distant second and third with average speeds of 3.17 Mb/s and 3.07 Mb/s.

Credit investigation regulations announced

After a decade of drafting, the Regulations on the Administration of Credit Investigation were officially announced on Wednesday and will take effect on March 15. Wang Yu, director of the Credit Information System Bureau of the People's Bank of China, the country's central bank, said the new policy will help regulate the behavior of credit investigation institutions, information providers and users, and protect the rights of the people concerned. Wang said bad-credit records will be kept for five years.

New Oriental to ax up to 1,500 jobs, 25 schools

New Oriental Education & Technology Group Inc, the Beijing-based private education provider, is cutting up to 1,500 jobs and shutting up to 25 schools. Louis Hsieh, its chief financial officer, said in a conference call that the cuts will be made over the next four months, and average severance payments will be $6,000 to $10,000 per person. The announcement came just a day after the New York-listed company posted a second-quarter loss of $26.9 million, compared with a $3.2 million loss in the same period last year, which it attributed to increased investment needed to open new schools.

High risk of Chinese economic correction: S&P

A Standard & Poor's report has questioned whether China has invested too highly relative to its returns, and may be poised for an economic correction should the investment cycle experience a downturn. Sampling 32 economies, including the world's 20 largest. the analysis comparing each country's investment-to-GDP ratio against real GDP growth, and categorized the economies into four risk categories - high, intermediate, less, and least - indicating the degree of risk it sees of an economic correction due to over-investment.

Wuhan Iron and Steel to buy overseas mining assets

Wuhan Iron and Steel (Group) Corp, China's fourth-largest steelmaker by output, is to boost investment in overseas iron ore mines and plans to achieve 100 percent iron ore self-sufficiency in three to five years. The parent company of Shanghai-listed Wuhan Iron and Steel said it also wants to abandon its heavy reliance on imported iron ore, which is sold at high prices by the top three iron ore producers: Vale, Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton. Wisco said in a statement it will "secure part of iron ore resources in Canada and Brazil to achieve self-sufficiency".

Cross-Straits investment deal takes effect

The Cross-Straits Investment Protection and Promotion Agreement, will take effect on Feb 1, the Ministry of Commerce said in a statement on its website on Thursday. Ministry spokesman Shen Danyang welcomed the pact and expected supportive measures for the smooth implementation. The pact will boost trade and create a fair investment environment, he said.

Auto financing venture with Jianghuai approved

Spanish lender Banco Santander SA has received Chinese regulatory approval to form a 50-50 joint venture with China's seventh-largest automaker, Jianghuai Automobile. Fortune Auto Finance will have registered capital of 500 million yuan ($79.50 million), making Santander one of the first foreign banks to get a car finance license in the world's largest automobile market. The venture will provide auto financing services to cars made by JAC and other brands, the bank said.

Sinochem to take 40% stake in US oil, gas field

Sinochem Group, one of China's four State oil companies, is buying a 40 percent stake in the 837.7 square km Wolfcamp oil and gas field, worth $1.7 billion, from the Texan company Pioneer Natural Resources Co, according to a statement from the seller. Pioneer will retain a 60 percent stake as well as operating rights for the field. The Chinese company will pay $500 million in cash for the stake, with $1.2 billion to be paid in the form of drilling equipment.

China Daily - Agencies

(China Daily 02/01/2013 page14)

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