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Southeast Asia

Hyundai to ship China-made cars to Southeast Asia amid erratic sales recovery

SEOUL/BEIJING: Hyundai Motor Co plans to ship China-made cars to Southeast Asia, its China joint venture, as a plunge in Chinese sales has left much of its massive local manufacturing capacity idled. Hyundai once ranked third by China sales alongside affiliate Kia Motors Corp. But just as it opened its fifth factory in the country last year, a diplomatic dispute saw Chinese consumers turn against South Korean goods, damaging Hyundai’s sales and brand image. Diplomatic ties have since normalized but Hyundai’s recovery…

Southeast Asia’s plastic fixation plagues world’s oceans

BANGKOK: On her lunch break, Bangkok office worker Chinapa Payakha emerges from a 7-Eleven store with two plastic bags. One holds a Big Gulp soft drink. The other carries her lunch, with a banana in its own plastic wrapper. “For office life, plastic bags are necessary,” said Chinapa, 34, whose shopping habits illustrate the challenges facing anti-plastic campaigners in Thailand, where plastic bags are handed out in abundance on any visit to a shop or market. As World Environment Day on Tuesday takes place and the…

With ports, ships and promises, India asserts role in Southeast Asia

SINGAPORE: Almost lost in the din of the upcoming U.S-North Korea summit and fresh tension between Washington and Beijing last week, India cemented its diplomatic and security ties across Southeast Asia in a clear challenge to China. It’s not clear just how far New Delhi will take these relationships, given years of promise, and a general election due in 11 months that could be a distraction for Prime Minister Narendra Modi. And if India is already rattling China, it won’t want to spark open confrontation. But Modi…

Southeast Asia’s Grab in talks to buy into Uber’s regional business: source

SINGAPORE: Southeast Asia’s biggest ride-hailing firm, Grab, is in advanced negotiations to buy parts of Uber’s business in the region, said a source with knowledge of the talks, in what would be Uber’s second retreat from an Asian market. Ride-hailing firms have raised billions of dollars to help compete in Southeast Asia where they have been forced into losses partly due to hefty incentives to drivers and discounts to riders. Grab has a dominant position in several markets in the region of about 640 million people,…