From Meghan Trainor to Dolly Parton, these artists all dropped albums for the 2020 festive season.
From Meghan Trainor to Dolly Parton, these artists all dropped albums for the 2020 festive season.
Camped out in bare offices, President Joe Biden's new White House team has spent its first three days scrambling for things like binder clips and IT support -- oh, and trying to save the country from multiple crises.
Authorities have received some reports of adverse events arising from the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, said a Singapore health official.
A refuse worker died on Friday after he was thought to have plunged 35 floors down a rubbish chute in a Hong Kong public housing block.Kwan Hau-kei, 58, a part-time cleaner, lay fatally injured in a bin at the bottom of the Tuen Mun residential tower for potentially several hours, before he was found and sent to hospital where he was later pronounced dead.The Labour Department has launched an investigation into the incident at King Lok House of Shan King Estate in Ming Kum Road.Get the latest insights and analysis from our Global Impact newsletter on the big stories originating in China.Kwan was assigned to remove rubbish from public corridors between the 19th and top floors of the 35-storey building. Indonesian domestic helper dies from fall while cleaning window of Hong Kong flatHe was found to be missing when a security guard noticed the refuse had not been cleaned up, leading him to call Kwan’s supervisor.His workmates went to the 35th-floor refuse room and found the chute open, but no trace of Kwan. The size of the chute opening is estimated to be 45cm by 45cm.The supervisor called Kwan’s phone, but no one answered, triggering a search of the estate.Shortly after 12.15am on Friday, Kwan was found unconscious in a 1.2-metre-high rubbish bin in the refuse storage room on the building’s ground floor.The green bin was used to collect rubbish that had been fed into the chute.Suffering multiple injuries to his body, he was sent to Tuen Mun Hospital, where he died shortly before 1am.A police source said security camera footage showed Kwan was last seen taking a lift to the 35th floor of the building before 8pm on Thursday. Train services disrupted after man jumps onto tracks, later found dead“The victim was believed to have lost balance and accidentally fell into the refuse chute while putting garbage into it,” the source said.He said initial investigation found there was nothing suspicious about the incident, adding there were no signs at the scene of fighting or a struggle.A police spokesman said the case had been classified as an industrial accident.“The Labour Department immediately deployed staff to the scene upon receiving a report of the accident and is now conducting an investigation to look into its cause,” the department said in a statement.More from South China Morning Post: * Firefighters rescue Hong Kong man from flames as faulty refrigerator starts blaze, forces 100 to evacuate building * Newborn baby’s body found next to rubbish bin in Hong Kong, police investigating * Hong Kong truck driver survives being flung out of vehicle after crashing into road barrier on Yuen Long Highway * ‘Miraculous escape’ in Hong Kong as clothes-drying racks save scaffolder who fell 10 floors off Hung Hom tower blockThis article Hong Kong refuse worker dies after ‘falling 35 floors down rubbish chute’ in Tuen Mun residential tower first appeared on South China Morning PostFor the latest news from the South China Morning Post download our mobile app. Copyright 2021.
Ant Group, the world’s largest fintech company, has lost the head of its insurance unit after five years in the job, amid a regulatory shake-out over offerings of financial services by technology companies.Yin Ming, the acclaimed designer of the mutual aid insurance programme Xianghubao – which means “protect each other” in Chinese – has resigned as the general manager of Ant Group’s insurance business, according to a company spokesperson. His replacement is Ant Group’s vice-president Shao Wenlan, who has headed the fintech company’s private credit scoring and loyalty programme Zhima Credit since June 2019.“Yin Ming has been a great colleague of ours for the past five years. We strived hard and overcame challenges together, and we appreciate his contributions to the company. We wish him the best of luck in the future,” according to the statement by the affiliate company of the South China Morning Post’s owner, Alibaba Group Holding.Get the latest insights and analysis from our Global Impact newsletter on the big stories originating in China.Yin has spent most of his career in insurance, starting at China Life’s property insurance arm in 2009 before being tapped to lead Ant Group’s expansion in the fintech industry in September 2015. Yin could not be reached for comment.Ant Group launched Xianghubao in 2018, a form of crowdsourced insurance product that capitalises on the large user base of China’s dominant online payments service to lower the cost of insurance. With more than 100 million members, the platform allows customers to pay close to nothing to receive up to 300,000 yuan (US$46,300) each in medical insurance coverage for 100 types of serious illnesses, each medical bill shared by the entire membership.The platform slashed the price of access to health insurance. In its first full year of operation, each Xianghubao member paid 29.17 yuan on average for coverage, less than the price of a Starbucks coffee in Shanghai. Ant Group set a maximum cost of 188 yuan per member last year, and expanded the service to provide premium-free coverage of up to 100,000 yuan for Covid-19 treatment.Yin’s departure comes amid a shake-out in China’s fintech industry, as regulators are anxious to ring-fence how technology has accelerated and magnified financial services in the country, amid concerns of potential risks to the underlying banking system. It has been a time of reckoning for Hangzhou-based Ant Group, which has grown from a payment service for online shopping into the world’s largest fintech company, with more than 1 billion active users and businesses in asset management, insurance and consumer credit.Ant Group’s insurance business reported 52 billion yuan in premium income in the year ended June, including income from Xianghubao and sales for other traditional insurance companies, according to its filing to the stock exchange of Hong Kong. Even though their businesses are not directly comparable, that would place Ant Group’s insurance income just behind Ping An Insurance, China Life and Pacific Insurance.Xianghubao, along with other mutual-aid insurance platforms which are not licensed in China, may face a slew of tighter regulations. The China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission (CBIRC) in December issued a consultation paper on tightened regulation about the sale of insurance products over the internet.Ant Group, which has pledged to comply with all regulations, may have to close Xianghubao if it cannot meet regulators’ requirements, according to the prospectus of its US$35 billion initial public offering, abandoned since November.It would not be the first to do so. Baidu, the Chinese internet search engine, closed its mutual insurance platform Denghuo Huzhou last August after getting only 500,000 members to join over a full year of operation. Meituan, the food delivery giant, will shut its Meituan Huzhu mutual aid platform on February 1 after 18 months of operation.In December, Ant Group voluntarily removed the online deposit products offered by banks on its platform to comply with regulatory requirements for online deposit services.People’s Bank of China deputy governor Pan Gongsheng in December instructed Ant Group to return to its origins in online payments and prohibit irregular competition, protect customers’ privacy in operating its personal credit rating business, and establish a financial holding company to manage its businesses.The country’s central banker also said Ant must rectify any irregularities in its insurance, wealth management and credit businesses, and run its asset-backed securities business in accordance with regulations.More from South China Morning Post: * China orders Ant Group to rein in unfettered expansion as regulators put up fences around financial risks * China’s mutual funds, armed with cash from Ant Group’s foiled IPO, plough into Tencent, HKEX and other Hong Kong-listed stocks * Amount spent by mainland Chinese on Hong Kong life insurance policies plummets 76 per cent as Covid-19 brings visitor arrivals to a standstill * Technology turbocharges China’s access to health insurance amid coronavirus pandemic – for the price of a Starbucks coffeeThis article Ant Group’s architect of mutual aid platform quits as insurance chief amid industry shake-out in world’s largest fintech market first appeared on South China Morning PostFor the latest news from the South China Morning Post download our mobile app. Copyright 2021.
While his girlfriend’s mother was sleeping, a man got aroused by her exposed breast and molested the woman.
US President Joe Biden on Friday said "well over 600,000" Americans could die of the coronavirus as he stepped up federal aid in the world's worst-hit country, while less wealthy nations anticipated better access to tests and vaccines thanks to several international deals.
The Ministry of Health (MOH) confirmed 15 new COVID-19 cases in Singapore on Friday (22 January), taking the country’s total case count to 59,250.
The tiny clinking vials supervised by silent PPE-wearing technicians belie the excitement inside the world's largest vaccine manufacturer, the Serum Institute of India, a major player in the fight against coronavirus.
The new head of Hong Kong’s Bar Association has called the arrest of 55 opposition figures an attempt to intimidate the city’s democratic movement, and warned against attacks on his colleagues in pro-Beijing media.Just hours after Paul Harris became the group’s new chairman, an editorial in Ta Kung Po on Friday accused the veteran human rights barrister of having a political mission to fulfil, after he called for the national security law to be amended.In a wide-ranging interview with the Post, Harris expressed concern over the sweeping Beijing-imposed law, and said he was keen to rebuild a dialogue with the mainland, as he set out his vision for the association’s future.Get the latest insights and analysis from our Global Impact newsletter on the big stories originating in China.Police arrested 55 opposition figures this month for taking part in an unofficial primary race to determine who would run in the Legislative Council elections, and alleged the polls amounted to subversion because one of the founders, former university law scholar Benny Tai Yiu-ting had suggested the ultimate aim was to force the government to resign.But Harris disagreed, and said it was “fairly obvious” the arrests were an abuse of the law, adding common sense would suggest those who took part in the polls did not necessarily endorse Tai’s views. Some, he noted, had even spoken out against the plan.“So to arrest them all was, to my mind, deliberate intimidation of the democratic movement,” he said, adding the city should have a better system to handle complaints following the anti-government protests in 2019.But Harris also described himself as a “rule of law man”, and “very much against violent demonstrations”.Immediately after being elected unopposed on Thursday, Harris said he intended to lobby the Hong Kong government to change some of the provisions in the security law. Outgoing Bar Association chairman calls for renewing of contacts with BeijingWhile he did not dispute that every place should have a national security law, Harris said he found some of the provisions incompatible with the Basic Law, the city’s mini-constitution.“I found the national security law profoundly offensive because it said certain people’s actions can’t be challenged in the court of law,” said Harris, referring to the exemption for mainland law enforcement agents from the local court’s scrutiny when they are exercising their duty.“I believe that the essence of the rule of law is that whoever you are, the law is above you,” he said.The law also stripped people in Hong Kong of their rights to a jury trial in serious cases, and allowed them to be sent to the mainland for court proceedings.Harris said he had not had a chance to speak to other Bar Council members, but he would try his best to bring them on board. While the decision ultimately lies with Beijing, he believed the Hong Kong government and pro-Beijing figures could help start a dialogue.The new chairman was part of the Bar’s delegation that visited Beijing in 2008, but its relationship with the mainland has deteriorated rapidly over the past three years.He noted any resumption of ties would be in Beijing’s hands, and noted that his predecessor, Philip Dykes, “tried really hard. He was met with a great wall”.Harris also spoke against attacks on judges, calling those assaults “cowardly and disgusting”, and said those found in some pro-Beijing newspapers – including one which suggested a judge had ruled against the police because he was friendly with the barrister of the other party – were “preposterous”.As attacks from the pro-Beijing side have also begun to mount on lawyers, including the Bar Association, he feared that could be one reason they had turned to him to take up the chairman post.Harris was worried the pressure had deterred some people, who were Hong Kong Chinese, to throw their hats in the ring. Bar Association questions Beijing’s legal power to enact national security lawHailing from the same discipline as Dykes, Harris has defended some of the most vulnerable asylum seekers and activists in the city’s courts.When the Oxford-educated barrister was chairing the human rights committee for the English Bar in the 1990s, Dykes reached out to set up a watchdog in Hong Kong.Since then, he had moved his practice to Hong Kong while working on setting up the advocacy body on the side.In 1995, Harris founded the Human Rights Monitor, a major advocacy organisation.More from South China Morning Post: * Hong Kong national security law: 53 former opposition lawmakers, activists arrested; authorities accuse them of plot to ‘overthrow’ government * Hong Kong national security law: four big questions raised by mass arrests of 53 opposition figures * Mass arrests point to Hong Kong’s quickening transition to a second-tier Chinese cityThis article Arrest of Hong Kong opposition figures a ‘fairly obvious’ abuse of law, says new head of city’s Bar Association first appeared on South China Morning PostFor the latest news from the South China Morning Post download our mobile app. Copyright 2021.
Canada said its officials have met online with former diplomat Michael Kovrig, who has been held in China for more than two years in a case related to an executive of Chinese telecoms giant Huawei. Canada’s Foreign Ministry said officials led by Ambassador Dominic Barton were given “on-site virtual consular access” to Kovrig on Thursday. Kovrig and businessman Michael Spavor have been confined since Dec. 10, 2018, just days after Canada detained Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou, who is also the daughter of the founder of the Chinese telecommunications equipment giant.
The US government’s top infectious disease expert said on Friday that former president Donald Trump’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic “very likely” cost lives.“I don’t want that job to be a sound bite but … you could see that when you’re starting to go down paths that are not based on any science at all, and we’ve been there before, I don’t want to rehash it, that is not helpful at all,” Dr Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told CNN in an interview.Fauci, made a senior adviser to President Joe Biden on Covid-19, blamed a lack of coordination between federal and state authorities for allowing infections to spread throughout the country. The US has already registered more than 400,000 coronavirus-related deaths and is on track to exceed half a million by the end of February.Get the latest insights and analysis from our Global Impact newsletter on the big stories originating in China.Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin, whom the Senate confirmed on Friday, made pandemic assistance his first priority to address the mounting loss of life.“What we saw a lot of was saying, ‘OK, states, do what you want to do,’ and states were doing things that clearly were not the right direction,” Fauci said.Many US states, he added, “want to have the capability of making their own decisions, but they also need resources, and they need help”.Fauci spoke as US health authorities confront thousands of Covid-19 deaths a day and face the possibility that the numbers will escalate as new, possibly more contagious, variants of the coronavirus that causes the disease emerge in the country.Throughout the pandemic, Trump, who left office on Wednesday, played down its severity and often insisted that the contagion was dying out. He refused to promote mask-wearing, which Biden addressed in his first full day in office with an executive order requiring the wearing of masks in all federal buildings and on public transport. Dr Fauci’s 2021 Covid-19 forecast for AmericaTrump also promoted unproven scientific remedies, including the anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine.In a bid to speed up vaccination in the US, Biden plans to mobilise the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the National Guard to set up as many as 100 sites around the country within the next month to deliver the shots, The Washington Post reported, citing a draft document by the administration.US vaccinations started nearly six weeks ago, but fewer than six doses have been administered for every 100 people as of Friday, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.“We must help the federal government move further and faster to eradicate the devastating effects of the coronavirus,” Austin said in his “Day One Message to the Force”.“To that end, we will also do everything we can to vaccinate and care for our workforce and to look for meaningful ways to alleviate the pressure this pandemic has exerted on you and your families.”In another break from Trump, Fauci also said this week that the US would not withdraw from the World Health Organization (WHO), the UN’s health agency, as the Trump administration had intended.Trump and many of his allies in Congress had accused the WHO of bungling its early response to the outbreak because it was too deferential to China.More from South China Morning Post: * Joe Biden orders masks, travel quarantine in new US war on Covid-19 * Dr Anthony Fauci ‘sure’ coronavirus vaccinations will be mandatory in hospitals and schools * Trump: Americans will develop ‘herd mentality’, coronavirus vaccine weeks away * Joe Biden plans immediate executive actions as Donald Trump era endsThis article Top US medical adviser Fauci says Trump’s coronavirus approach ‘very likely’ cost lives first appeared on South China Morning PostFor the latest news from the South China Morning Post download our mobile app. Copyright 2021.
14 Vietnamese nationals were fined between $2,500 and $3,500 for COVID-19 breaches, including having an illegal social gathering.
Former Mediacorp actor Ng Aik Leong, known by his Chinese name as Huang Yiliang, was found guilty of assaulting a worker in his employ with a metal scraper.
Greater Bay Airlines (GBA), the Hong Kong start-up vying to snatch a lucrative slice of top local carrier Cathay Pacific’s business, has bid to secure the right to fly to more than 100 destinations across Asia – a major step towards making its first take-off a reality.The fledgling airline, headed by former top Cathay executive Algernon Yau Ying-wah, applied to the government for the rights to operate scheduled flights, according to a public filing gazetted on Friday.Company sources were watching the filing closely to see if rival local airlines – namely Cathay Pacific, HK Express and Hong Kong Airlines – lodged objections, the filing being their first opportunity to do so. Any objection would result in a delay and a probable public hearing to weigh the concerns of the opposing parties.Get the latest insights and analysis from our Global Impact newsletter on the big stories originating in China.Almost half of the routes in the bid are from Hong Kong International Airport to destinations in mainland China. GBA has also bid for routes to Japan, Taiwan, Korea, and Southeast Asia.The rights to the routes were put up for grabs after being relinquished by now-defunct regional carrier Cathay Dragon, which was shut down last year as part of a wider restructuring of its parent company, resulting in the loss of 5,900 jobs.An air transport licence would permit GBA to run scheduled flights from Hong Kong to any destination. However, it would have to compete against local rivals to win airport slots on the routes, particularly ones vacated by Dragon.Dragon at its peak operated 48 aircraft flying to 50 destinations, including 70 flights a week to Shanghai Pudong and 42 to Beijing. For now, Cathay Pacific has regained a combination of passenger and cargo rights to Kuala Lumpur, Fukuoka, Kaohsiung and Hanoi.GBA founder Bill Wong Cho-bau, who owns the Shenzhen-based Donghai Airlines, told the Post in a previous interview that he was investing HK$2 billion (US$258 million) to launch GBA with a starting staff strength of 300.GBA, seemingly undeterred by the damage inflicted on the aviation industry by the Covid-19 pandemic, has ambitious hopes of operating up to 30 aircraft and employing between 2,500 and 3,000 people by 2025, with much of its workforce expected to also come from Dragon.The Air Transport Licensing Authority, an independent statutory body established under the Transport and Housing Bureau, oversees the application process and, among other things, scrutinises the financial health of airlines when they experience difficulties.The authority said it would require any objections from other parties to be submitted within 14 days of the gazette posting.But according to one legal expert who successfully worked on past objections against Jetstar Hong Kong – and who spoke on condition of anonymity – even if there was no opposition, it would still take between 16 and 20 weeks for the authority to render its decision on GBA’s bid.From the gazetting of Jetstar’s traffic rights application to its final rejection, the process dragged on for almost two years, the expert said.GBA, meanwhile, is also still trying to secure its air operator’s certificate. Its application also confirmed it intended to fly Boeing 737s, of which it has leased three. Hong Kong set to hit long-haul aircrew with strictest quarantine measuresLaw Cheung-kwok, senior adviser at the aviation policy and research centre at Chinese University, said: “Greater Bay Airlines will definitely need to operate some profitable routes to start with, so routes to the major mainland cities including Beijing, Shanghai and other regional routes would be very important for the successful launch and sustainable development of the airline.”Law added that the local government was keen to support Hong Kong competition in the aviation sector. He pointed out that defunct carriers Oasis Hong Kong and Jetstar also had promise, but ultimately failed.In more recent times, Cathay Pacific has absorbed budget carrier HK Express, while the comparative minnow Hong Kong Airlines has struggled not only with its own financial woes, but also to crack the dominance of Hong Kong’s de facto flag carrier.Adding a fresh competitor, Law said, might be seen as an attractive proposition.“With respect to the application of Greater Bay Airlines, I think the Hong Kong government welcomes such a development.”More from South China Morning Post: * Cathay Dragon chief to take top job at Hong Kong newcomer Greater Bay Airlines * Hong Kong mogul Bill Wong looks beyond Covid-19, ready to hire pilots as he prepares Greater Bay Airlines for take-off * Amid travel standstill, newcomer Greater Bay Airlines seeks Hong Kong approval to take offThis article Hong Kong upstart Greater Bay Airlines formally applies for rights to operate more than 100 routes first appeared on South China Morning PostFor the latest news from the South China Morning Post download our mobile app. Copyright 2021.
Glow-in-the-dark rabbit ears, pulsating beats, and a flexible attitude to masks: nightlife in China's Wuhan is back with a vengeance almost a year after a lockdown brought life to a standstill in the city of 11 million.
From the upcoming impeachment trial of Donald Trump to the massive coronavirus stimulus package, a power-sharing impasse and a brewing showdown over the filibuster, Chuck Schumer faces the challenge of his political career as US Senate majority leader.
The government will impose a cap of eight distinct visitors per household per day from 26 January, amid a rise in the number of COVID-19 community cases.
Pfizer on Friday committed to supply up to 40 million doses of its COVID-19 vaccine this year to a World Health Organization-backed effort to get affordable shots to poor and middle-income countries. The deal is a boost to the global program known as COVAX, as wealthy nations have snapped up most of the millions of coming shots. The commitment, announced at a virtual press conference held by the Geneva-based WHO, is seen as important because Pfizer and its partner BioNTech last month won the first vaccine emergency authorizations from WHO and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Bid farewell to the year that didn’t happen (also known as 2020), and say hello to the fortunes and opportunities that await you in the Year of the Ox. Fortune favours the bold! Come 12 February 2021, we will be entering the Year of the […] The post Financial Chinese Horoscope Reading For The Year Of The Metal Ox (2021) appeared first on SingSaver Blog - We Compare, You Save.
The long-delayed RTS Link promises to be a game-changer in easing congestion at the Causeway, said Transport Minister Ong Ye Kung.