Daily Archives: Aug 6, 2012

Mexico may not be breaking records at London’s Olympic Games but back home it is racking them up. On Monday, the country’s vehicle manufacturer’s association, Amia, reported that production in July reached 238,146. That is the largest number of vehicles Mexico has ever produced during that month. It is also 17.7 per cent higher than last July’s figure. Read more

Cuba has found itself between a rock and a hard place in its quest to find oil in its territorial waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Several rocks and several hard places, in fact.

After a discovery that failed to reach commercial proportions and a dry hole, both drilled by Spain’s Repsol, Malaysia’s Petronas and Russia’s Gazpromneft brought more bad news on Monday. Read more

Any talk of raising export tariffs on Argentina’s farm output – especially on soya, the country’s top agricultural moneymaker – is like a red rag to a bull, raising memories of a bitter four-month farm strike in 2008 triggered by President Cristina Fernández’s plans to hike tariffs.

But there is plenty of talk at the moment that the government will do just that – raising the export tariff on soya to 40 per cent, from 35 per cent now. El Cronista Comercial, an opposition business daily, says that would mean the government would capture 75 per cent of the income generated by Argentina’s top cash crop in 2013, when important mid-term elections are, not uncoincidentally, due to be held. Read more

The death of a Chinese mine supervisor during a protest over wages at the Chinese-owned Collum coal mine in Zambia’s Southern Province has brought the uneasy African-Chinese working relationship into the spotlight again.

This is not the first time the Collum mine has been the site of controversy, with a history of complaints and even gunfire. The Zambian government’s response will now be watched closely. Read more

With his deep, chanting voice and contagious laughs he can convince you everything is going according to plan. “We have systematically and purposefully over-performed,” says Juan Carlos Echeverry, Colombia’s finance minister. For him, it is a virtuous circle: confidence, which leads to job creation, which leads to poverty reduction. “Confidence in the economy is intact. That is what every finance minister looks for.” Read more

Romania’s political crisis took a new turn on Monday as Victor Ponta, prime minister, replaced five members of his cabinet including the foreign, justice and interior ministers, as he continues his battle to unseat Traian Basescu, the suspended president.

Ponta’s government is just three months old and elections are due in the autumn so the changes will have little impact on policy. But they will do nothing to assuage mounting concerns locally and internationally about the rule of law in the country. Read more

In a widely expected move, Cognizant Technology Solutions – which is based in the US but operates mostly out of India – overtook Infosys as the IT industry’s second-biggest company by revenues, according to results for the quarter ended in June.

Analysts said such expectation-beating numbers have come to be, well, expected from Cognizant – to such an extent that when it merely meets expectations its stock falters – so there were few surprises contained in the results. Read more

The rise of emerging markets has been accompanied by rapid growth in their capital markets. But some markets have emerged more quickly than others. Chart of the week  looks at which markets have grown most quickly, and in which areas. Read more

* Indonesia GDP growth beats expectations

* China opens secret leadership conclave

* China gives its own grade to dim sum

* US and China argue over South China Sea Read more

Shares in Reliance Industries rose over 5 per cent Monday on news that the company had agreed to share information on its biggest natural gas asset, the underperforming KG-D6 gas field, with the government – a move which could alleviate some of the tension between the two parties.

The spike in share price comes the day before the gas field’s management committee, headed by the country’s top hydrocarbon regulator, is set to meet to discuss RIL’s request for additional capital expenditure approval. Read more

Monday’s picks from the BB team: China’s political elite gather in the seaside town of Beidaihe to plan the Communist Party’s leadership transition; could electricity be India’s subprime? China’s foreign exchange reserves seem impressive, but some people think they could disappear rapidly. Plus, does Huawei pose a security threat to the west? Read more

Chinese mainland companies looking to raise funds in the offshore market may have a new friend in town. Chengxin, a Chinese rating agency, has been given the green light to operate in Hong Kong – a first for China – opening the door to a new set of ratings for dim sum bonds.

Chengxin promises to offer more “objective insights about Chinese issuers than its international peers”, reports IFRRead more

Is there no stopping the Indonesian consumer? Second quarter GDP figures out on Monday showed the economy growing 6.4 per cent year on year, up from 6.3 per cent in the previous quarter and a healthy chunk more than the Bloomberg consensus of 6.1 per cent.

With most of the world gripped by recession or fear of recession, Indonesia’s consumers are carrying on regardless. Household spending was up 5 per cent year on year, up from 4.9 per cent in Q1. All that demand is driving a surge in investment. Read more

Now it’s pretty much official: Beijing is happy to see the renminbi depreciate.

The China Securities Journal, an influential state newspaper, commented on its front page on Monday that China needed a weaker currency to compensate for a deterioration in the global economy. Read more

* China opens secret leadership conclave

* New tensions rise on South China Sea

* Sudan oil deal hits snag on security Read more