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FirstFT: Covid cases in China are heading towards a record high

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Covid-19 cases in China soaring towards record heights, Forcing officials to lock down swathes of the country once again.

The world’s second-largest economy reported nearly 28,000 new cases of Covid-19 yesterday, with outbreaks continuing to hit Beijing, the southern manufacturing hub of Guangzhou, and the southwestern city of Chongqing.

The country’s battle to suppress the virus has decimated China’s economy, disrupted global supply chains and threatened global growth. Nearly three years after Covid first hit Wuhan, vaccination rates among China’s vulnerable population lag behind those of many rich countries, while its continued use of lockdowns as the primary means of disease control has left it a world apart. .

Officials in Beijing closed most non-essential businesses in Chaoyang, the city’s largest district, with a population of 3.4 million, and shut down restaurants and other entertainment venues in much of the city, while asking residents to work from home.

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  • Related reading: Hong Kong has it lost her crown For owning the world’s most expensive retail district by lease to New York, after the city’s economy was hit by visitor restrictions and strict Covid measures as part of its slow recovery from the pandemic.

1. Bankman-Fried ran FTX as a personal fiefdom, court heard Sam Bankman-Fred, founder of FTX, runs the cryptocurrency exchange by the name of his “personal fiefdom” Prior to its collapse, according to a lawyer working on bankruptcy, “large sums of money” was spent on things unrelated to the business such as vacation homes in the Bahamas.

“We have witnessed one of the most sudden and difficult collapses in American corporate history,” James Bromley of Sullivan & Cromwell told a US court.

2. Iran to expand its nuclear enrichment program Iran announced that Expanding the nuclear enrichment program, in a provocative response to a rebuke by the United Nations watchdog over the alleged existence of undeclared nuclear sites. The head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization said Tuesday it had added the underground Fordo facility to the list of sites where it was enriching uranium to a purity level of 60 percent, just below weapons grade.

3. Russia threatens to restrict the flow of gas to Western Europe Gazprom, the monopoly on Russia’s state-backed gas pipeline, yesterday accused Ukraine of taking gas intended for Moldova from lines that pass through the country, and warned that it Supplies may decrease From November 28.

4. Chinese children’s gaming addiction is ‘solution’, industry body says China’s largest gaming industry association, linked to the state gaming regulator, has declared that the problem of children’s video game addiction is “resolved”It is the clearest sign yet that Beijing will ease its restrictions on approving new addresses.

5. The United States strengthens security relations in Manila with the visit of the Vice President US Vice President Kamala Harris visited the Philippine island of Palawan, located on the edge of the disputed South China Sea, on Tuesday, in Bold demonstration On how Washington and Manila are reinvigorating their security alliance as they guard against an increasingly assertive Beijing.

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US Vice President Kamala Harris has become the most senior US official to visit the Philippine island of Palawan, located on the edge of the disputed South China Sea. © Haiyun Jiang / The New York Times / AP

next day

Pricing meeting in New Zealand With an inflation rate of 7.2 per cent, New Zealand policymakers are expected to implement them Biggest price hike ever At today’s Monetary Policy Committee meeting. (Reuters)

PMI data S&P’s global manufacturing and services PMI data will be published in Australia, the European Union, France, the United Kingdom and the United States. Analysts predict too The Eurozone PMI contracts Even as its economy expanded in the third quarter.

US Federal Reserve meeting minutes The minutes of the November central bank meeting, due for release today, may provide more clues about the outlook for monetary policy.

UK Supreme Court decision on the Scottish referendum The verdict is due today On whether the Scottish Parliament could call a second referendum on independence without the consent of the British Westminster government.

world cup match The Japanese men’s team will start against Germany at 4pm local time in Doha.

What else do we read?

Clothes are piling up in warehouses in Bangladesh Orders at the world’s second largest clothing exporter have slowed amid the war in Ukraine and rising inflation. and the Decreased global demand for clothing It comes as Bangladesh grapples with soaring prices for imported gas, which has led to power outages that have hit some garment producers.

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There is a growing slump in mental health Employee Assistance Programs a A swelling wave of complex mental health problems Brought to them by people who have nowhere else to turn. What is behind the increase? Sarah O’Connor explores.

Column chart of patients prescribed antidepressants showing more than 8 million received at least one prescription for antidepressant medication last year

Vietnam leads the technological growth market index Vietnam’s digital economy is set to experience a compound annual growth of 8.9 percent between 2022 and 2026. The fastest among the 51 countries surveyed In the FT-Omdia Index of Digital Economies.

Saudi Arabia’s Green Agenda The world’s largest exporter of crude oil has for decades burned billions of barrels of oil to fuel power plants, desalination plants and industries at heavily subsidized prices. Now, investing in solar and wind energy may be Helps the Kingdom achieve emissions targets – And pump more crude for sale.

Sam Bankman-Fried and the Power of Bad Dressing Clothing is always a costume and a mask. And there is no more traditional or staggering dress for those in power than the dress of indifference. Writes Robert Armstrong.

Sam Bankman-Fried, co-founder and CEO of FTX, in his signature appearance in 2021 © Bloomberg

Try our crossword puzzles

Try on our site Crossword. If you want a real challenge, go with the cryptic crossword. And you can catch up with Roger Blitz Helpful guide here.

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Climate chart: an explanation – Learn about the most important weather data for the week. Participation over here

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Economic

Georgieva of the International Monetary Fund to discuss the economy and Covid with Chinese authorities via Reuters

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© Reuters. International Monetary Fund Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva attends a press conference following a meeting at the Federal Chancellery in Berlin, Germany on November 29, 2022. REUTERS/Michel Tantosi

NEW YORK (Reuters) – International Monetary Fund Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva said on Thursday that she will travel to Beijing next week with heads of other international institutions to discuss China’s economic outlook and COVID-19 policies with the country’s leadership.

“This is the first time, and we hope we can sit down together and discuss the very pressing issues facing China and the world,” Georgieva told the upcoming Reuters conference.

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Dutch minister defends trade relations with China

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A senior Dutch minister has defended the country’s deepening trade ties with China and vowed not to overreact on high-tech exports as the Biden administration pushes its European partners to harden their stance on Beijing.

The Netherlands remains “very positive” about its relationship with China, Micky Adriansens, the economy minister, said, saying Dutch companies operating there are providing a boost to innovation and trade.

As the United States presses its partners to tighten controls on exports of high-end semiconductor equipment to China, it has insisted that the Netherlands and Europe “must have their own strategy.”

“We have to think about this through – what are the risks of doing business with China in terms of certain products and value chains,” she told the Financial Times. “In general, we in the Netherlands are very positive and always have good relations with China. We do a lot of business with China. There are a lot of Dutch companies operating.”

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China accounts for 11 percent of Dutch imports, second only to Germany, and about 5 percent of exports.

The minister said that the relationship “gives a real boost to innovation and trade which is fundamental for Europe. We must cherish that as well.”

The remarks appear to contradict those of US Secretary of State Antony Blinken this week, who said he has seen “growing rapprochement” between the US and its allies on China. Blinken’s comments follow the US decision in October to impose strict export controls aimed at slowing China’s development capacity and preventing it from obtaining advanced semiconductors that could be used for military purposes.

The Netherlands is home to ASML and ASM International, two world-leading manufacturers of chip equipment.

The United States is now trying to persuade the Netherlands and Japan, another big player in the global chip industry, to strike a three-way deal that would further limit China’s access to chip-making tools.

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US sanctions, which prevent companies from sending many US-made products to China, have already hurt Dutch industry. ASMI He said This week they will affect about 40 percent of sales to China, which accounts for 16 percent of the group’s revenue.

Adriaansens declined to comment on the possible time frame in the semiconductor talks, saying it’s “not a simple yes or no,” but a matter of examining many aspects of a very complex production process. “You have to be very clear about which aspect of the production process is the most important issue for China,” she said.

“The Netherlands and Europe should have their own strategy,” she said, when asked about the US talks. At the same time, they needed to be aware of the risks associated with “specific technologies”. She added, “You don’t want to overdo it, but on the other hand, you don’t want to open your doors where safety is the number one issue — it’s a balancing thing.”

She also warned that it may not be possible to prevent China from acquiring advanced technology. “The development cycle is going very fast in China. We must not be naive.”

Adriaansens said the US’s separate actions to provide massive green technology subsidies to local businesses are troubling The Hague.

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The European Union said that a large part of the $369 billion in tax breaks and tax support in the United States Inflation Reduction Act discriminatory and violates global trade rules, and is in talks with Washington.

“The law to reduce inflation has an impact on industry and the economy in the Netherlands and the EU as a whole,” said Adriaansens. Combined with lower energy prices, it would deter investors and hurt European business competitiveness.

The minister added that the West should have a level playing field and “the same set of rules”. I compared it to the upcoming World Cup match with the United States. “We would like to have the same goal size and the same lines on the field in both halves.”

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Brazil’s Economy Grows Less Than Expected In The Third Quarter, But Still At A Record High By Reuters

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Containers to be loaded at a cargo terminal at the Port of Santos in Santos, Brazil on September 16, 2021. REUTERS/Carla Carnel

BRASILIA (Reuters) – Brazil’s economy slowed in the third quarter, with growth less than expected but still enough to put it at the highest level in the chain since its inception in 1996.

The country’s gross domestic product rose 0.4% in the three months through September, state statistics agency IBGE said on Thursday, less than the 0.7% growth expected by economists polled by Reuters.

It was the fifth consecutive quarter of expansion, again boosted by the services sector, which put Latin America’s largest economy 4.5% above the level recorded before the pandemic, in the last quarter of 2019.

However, the loss of strength highlights the challenges ahead as the central bank’s aggressive monetary tightening to fight inflation began to overshadow activity further, overshadowing government stimulus ahead of the presidential election in October this year that helped boost demand.

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The performance in the third quarter was mainly driven by 1.1% growth in the dominant services sector, while manufacturing grew 0.8% and agriculture fell 0.9%.

On the demand side, investment rose 2.8%, government spending grew 1.3%, and consumer spending increased 1.0%.

Brazil’s GDP expanded by 3.6% compared to the third quarter of 2021, while economists expected an increase of 3.7%.

IBGE also revised its second quarter result to expand 1.0% sequentially from the 1.2% previously reported. But growth in the first quarter has now picked up to 1.3% from 1.1% previously.

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