UN climate talks kick off, focus on global warming
UN talks on a new climate pact resumed Monday in oil and gas-rich Qatar, where negotiators from nearly 200 countries will discuss fighting global warming and helping poor nations adapt to it. The two-decade-old talks have not fulfilled their main purpose: reducing the greenhouse gas emissions that scientists say are warming the planet. Attempts to create a new climate treaty failed in Copenhagen three years ago but countries agreed last year to try again, giving themselves a deadline of 2015 to adopt a new treaty. Several issues need to be resolved by then, including how to spread the burden of emissions cuts between rich and poor countries. That’s unlikely to be decided in the Qatari capital of Doha, where negotiators will focus on extending the Kyoto Protocol, an emissions deal for industrialised countries, and trying to raise billions of dollars to help developing countries adapt to a shifting climate.
Honda mulls shifting Civic development to US
Honda Motor Co is considering developing the next generation of the Civic in the US rather than Japan, a spokesman said, after the last version of the automaker’s popular sedan was panned by critics. North America accounts for half of total Civic sales. The 2012 Civic, Honda’s third-best selling model last year after the CR-V and the Accord, was criticised for having an uninspired design and a bumpy ride. “Localising Civic development (in the US) is among various factors we are considering. Generally speaking, Honda wants to develop cars locally where we sell them,” said Satoshi Takami, a Honda spokesman based in Tokyo. The Nikkei business daily reported earlier on Monday that Honda would develop both the next generation Civic and Accord sedans in the US. Both are set to go on sale around 2016.
Renesas shareholders set to approve bailout
Shareholders of Japan’s embattled Renesas Electronics Corp are close to approving a government-led bailout, Reuters reported, sending the firm’s shares 17% higher on relief that the $2.4 billion rescue was being finalised. The deal is set to keep the world’s biggest maker of microcontroller chips afloat for the next few years, but analysts say that despite job cuts and planned plant closures, Renesas still faces many challenges including the restructuring of its loss-making system chip division. The state-backed Innovation Network Corp will spend 180 billion yen ($2.2 billion) to take a two-thirds stake in Renesas, which has been hit by fierce overseas competition, production cuts by clients and fragile finances.
Telefonica considers US listing for LatAm ops
Spanish telecom company Telefonica is considering grouping its Latin American businesses into a Spanish holding company to list in New York next year, newspaper Expansion reported on Monday. The firm is on a debt-cutting drive after years of credit-fueled expansion and successfully listed part of its German unit in October. Should Telefonica need to raise more cash next year, its most likely plan is to float a minority stake in a newly-created holding company for its Latin American assets, Expansion said, without citing sources. The Latin America initial public offering process is ongoing, and no decision has been taken in this regard, a spokesman for Telefonica said.
Samsung finds labour violations at China vendors
Samsung Electronics Co. says its audit of Chinese suppliers found illegal labour practices such as excessive overtime. Samsung said Monday it found instances of Chinese employees working overtime beyond legal hours and being fined for absence or tardiness. The company conducted a four-week audit of 105 suppliers in China after allegations it was ignoring illegal labour practices. China Labor Watch, a New York-based labor rights group, said in August that Samsung’s suppliers hired children and working conditions were “inhumane”. Samsung said its audit team found no child labour, but its suppliers must adopt new hiring procedures and it would cancel contracts if child labour is found.