Foreign business news in brief

  • Business
  • Wednesday, 16 Jul 2003

Opec may cut oil output by year-end 


CARACAS: Opec members will cut production if necessary by year-end to keep prices in the cartel’s US$22-US$28-a-barrel target range, Venezuelan Energy Minister Rafael Ramirez said. 

“If we need to cut between now and the end of the year, we’ll do it to maintain a price in the established band,” Ramirez said at a press conference. 

Opec members are expected at their meeting on July 31 to leave production limits unchanged until their next meeting in late September. Meanwhile, a slower-than-expected recovery in post-war Iraqi exports is keeping global oil supplies tight. The price of Opec’s basket of crudes rose out of its US$22-US$28 chosen range last week, hitting US$28.14 a barrel, according to Opec's official news agency. – Reuters 


China carmaker agrees to SUV venture  


SHANGHAI: Chinese auto maker Dongfeng Motor Corp said yesterday it had agreed to set up a joint venture with Japan’s Honda Motor Co to tap a small but growing market for sport utility vehicles (SUVs). 

The proposed company, a 50-50 venture to be based in Wuhan, would produce 5,000 CR-Vs this year, a Dongfeng executive said. “It’s all been decided,” he said, but declined to reveal financial details.  

A Honda spokesman in Tokyo, however, said he could not confirm the agreement. “Our relationship with Dongfeng spans about 10 years, and we are always discussing the possibility of further business alliances,” he said. “But we haven’t reached a stage where we can confirm anything.” – Reuters 


Hopewell unit to raise HK$3.8b in IPO 

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HONG KONG: The highway unit of Hong Kong's Hopewell Holdings Ltd plans to raise up to HK$3.8bil in an initial public offering (IPO), according to a banker close to the deal.  

The IPO would be the second largest in Hong Kong this year after that of Chinese freight forwarder Sinotrans in February. Hopewell Highway Infrastructure Ltd is planning to sell at least 720 million new shares, or one quarter of its enlarged share capital, at an indicative range of HK$4.03-HK$5.28 each. – Reuters 


China Telecom in talks to buy 6 networks 


HONG KONG: China Telecom Corp Ltd, the publicly traded unit of China’s largest fixed-line carrier, China Telecommunications Corp, is in “early talks” to buy six of its parent’s provincial networks. 

Analysts expect the move to cost China Telecom anywhere from US$6bil to US$7bil, which the company would likely pay for with a mixture of cash and new debt or funds raised through a public offering in China. – Reuters  

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