World News in Brief: May 11

Wednesday, 2022-05-11 19:03:02
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Rising fuel and food prices look set to stoke an "inevitable" rise in civil unrest, with developing middle-income countries such as Brazil or Egypt particularly at risk, a report by a risk consultancy said.
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Japan's upper house of parliament on Wednesday enacted into law a bill purported to help bolster the country's economic security.

* Philippines presidential election winner Ferdinand Marcos Jr said on Wednesday his intention was to hit the ground running when he takes office next month, and said he was looking very carefully for economic managers, whose roles are critical.

* US President Joe Biden on Tuesday said the administration is discussing whether to drop the additional tariffs on Chinese imports imposed during the Trump administration, while noting that no decision has been made.

* The French Development Agency (AFD) has committed to providing over 300 million euros (316 million USD) to Cambodia to support development projects for three years, said its press statement on Wednesday.

* Finnish Prime Minister Sanna Marin said on Wednesday that if her nation takes the historic step of applying to join the NATO military alliance, it would be for the security of its own citizens and would also strengthen the international community.

* Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Wednesday visited Oman, a fellow member of the OPEC+ alliance of oil producers, where he met with the Gulf Arab state's ruling sultan, Omani state media said.

* Germany's gas supply is currently still secure, the economy ministry said, after flows of Russian gas to Europe through a key transit point in Ukraine dried.

* Sri Lanka's Central Bank Governor Nandalal Weerasinghe on Wednesday warned that the economic situation in the country will worsen if political stability is not achieved.

* The United Nations and the Netherlands will co-host a pledging conference to help prevent an oil spill from the derelict tanker Safer anchored off Yemen, a UN spokesman said on Tuesday.

* A 6.8-magnitude earthquake hit northern Chile's Antofagasta region at 7:06 p.m. local time (2306 GMT) Tuesday, with no reports of casualties or material damage so far, according to the National Seismological Center of the University of Chile.

* Malaysia's natural rubber exports rose 12.5 percent to 53,328 tonnes in March 2022 from 47,386 tonnes in February, official data showed on Wednesday.

* The number of employed people in the Republic of Korea rose 865,000 in April from a year earlier, marking the fastest April growth in 22 years, statistical office data showed Wednesday.

* Germany's inflation rate in April rose to 7.4 percent amid soaring energy prices, according to confirmed figures published by the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) on Wednesday.

* Portuguese imports grew 36.8 percent year-on-year in the first quarter, the country's National Institute of Statistics (INE) said Tuesday. Exports surged 18.2 percent from a year ago, the INE noted, adding that Portugal's industrial supplies saw a 38.9 percent growth.

* France will eke out quarterly growth of 0.2% in the second quarter as parts of the service sector recover from a slump induced by the Omicron COVID variant earlier this year, the central bank said.

* The annual inflation rate in Greece was 10.2 percent in April, the highest level in 28 years, the Hellenic Statistical Authority (ELSTAT) said on Tuesday.

* Dubai's flagship airline Emirates hopes that it will this fiscal year start paying back the 15 billion dirhams ($4.1 billion) in state assistance it receive from the government during the pandemic, its chairman said on Monday.

* South Africa's largest metal-workers' union began a strike at ArcelorMittal South Africa Ltd ACLJ.J on Wednesday after wage negotiations broke down, the steelmaker said in a statement.

* House prices in New Zealand, which were already elevated before the COVID-19 pandemic, jumped 43% in the two years to December 2021, according to the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand said.

* Japan's top government spokesman said Wednesday that the wearing of facial masks or coverings worn in a bid to limit the transmission of the COVID-19 virus would no longer be necessary as long as people maintain proper social distancing measures.

* Chileans without two booster shots of the COVID-19 vaccine will be unable to renew their mobility passes starting next month, the government announced Tuesday.

Xinhua/Reuters/VNA