Category archives: Business

Corruption across EU 'breathtaking' - EU Commission

From country to country the pattern of corruption varies a lot The extent of corruption in Europe is “breathtaking” and it costs the EU economy about 120bn euros (£99bn) annually, the European Commission says. EU Home Affairs Commissioner Cecilia Malmstroem is now presenting a full report on the problem. Writing in Sweden’s Goeteborgs-Posten daily, she said corruption was eroding trust in democracy and draining resources from the legal economy. For […]

Global smartphone shipments top one billion 'milestone'

More than one billion smartphones were shipped last year, with Samsung extending its lead as the world’s biggest vendor, a new survey has showed. According to market research firm IDC, 1.004 billion smartphones were shipped last year, marking a 38.4% increase from the previous year. South Korea’s Samsung accounted for the bulk of that figure, followed by Apple and China’s Huawei. Smartphones made up more than half of the 1.8 […]

China economic growth at 14-year low

  China’s economy, the world’s second-largest, grew at its slowest pace in 14 years in 2013, latest figures show. Its gross domestic product (GDP) expanded 7.7% from a year ago, the slowest pace of growth since 1999. The growth rate was better than the government’s target of 7.5%. The pace of expansion was also the same as 2012. The data highlights the challenge policymakers face in sustaining China’s high growth […]

 
 
 

End Iran sanctions, Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammed tells BBC

The ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, has called on the international community to lift its sanctions against Iran. ”Iran is our neighbour and we don’t want any problem,” said Sheikh Mohammed, who rarely gives interviews. But with the United Arab Emirates hosting Expo 2020, and signs that it is rebounding from the world financial crisis, he has been speaking exclusively to the BBC’s Jon Sopel in […]

German magazine claims NSA hacking unit uses powerful methods to obtain data

A German magazine, citing internal documents, claims the NSA’s hacking unit uses James Bond-style spy gear to obtain data, including intercepting computer deliveries and outfitting them with espionage software. Der Spiegel’s revelations relate to a division of the NSA known as Tailored Access Operations, or TAO, which is painted as an elite team of hackers specializing in stealing data from the toughest of targets. Citing the internal documents, the magazine […]

Denver issues first licenses for legal retail marijuana sales

  Ahead of the day when Colorado residents aged 21 and older can buy marijuana for recreational use, the first batch of Denver businesses approved to sell the drug got their licenses Friday. Applause broke out and cameras whirred when the first license was issued from Denver’s Department of Excise and Licenses. The city awarded 14 licenses for retail shops, 17 licenses for pot growers and three licenses for makers […]

The doctor won’t see you? Analysts warn ObamaCare plans could resemble Medicaid

  Those signing up for private health care coverage on the ObamaCare exchanges may be in for an unpleasant surprise — they’ll have insurance, but they might have trouble getting the doctor to see them.  As hundreds of thousands enroll for coverage beginning Jan. 1, analysts are warning that the plans are likely to give them access to fewer doctors and hospitals. So much so, they warn, that the system […]

The top tech stories of 2013

STORY HIGHLIGHTS Revelations about the scope of the NSA’s snooping lead to the year’s biggest tech stores Hacking of major companies and sites for politics, fun and profit a reoccurring story in 2013 Snapchat, Vine, Bitcoin and iOS 7 all became familiar terms A year of high profile hacks: A series of hacks launched by groups like the Syrian Electronic Army and possibly the Chinese military made headlines throughout the […]

Chinese investors 'buying' US green cards for $1m

As the US debates how to reform its immigration system – and deal with roughly 11 million undocumented immigrants living in the country – wealthy foreigners already have a legal route to a new life in America. A visa programme called EB-5 offers overseas investors the opportunity to get permanent residence – a green card – in return for $1m (£614,000). In areas with high unemployment, the visas are available […]

Iran sanctions 'could be lifted in December' - Fabius

An adoring crowd gathers to meet the Iranian negotiators as Emily Buchanan reports French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius says some EU sanctions on Iran could be lifted as early as next month, as part of a nuclear deal with world powers. He was speaking after crowds in Tehran cheered negotiators who had agreed to curb some of Iran’s nuclear activities in return for sanctions relief. The six-month interim deal agreed […]