Business & Markets 2013
Written by Ho Wah Foon of theedgemalaysia.com
Monday, 24 June 2013 20:31
KUALA LUMPUR (June 24): With foreign selling of quality stocks in the local market amid concerns over US monetary policy and China’s growth outlook, index-linked stocks could continue to come under the active radar of institutional funds.
The ringgit continues to weaken due to the unloading of local investments by foreign funds.
In addition to external factors, the general market could also be affected by news that the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) has revised downwards Malaysia's external trade growth projection for this year to 3-4%, from 4-5% earlier.
MITI Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed said today "there are tough challenges ahead for us to achieve the initial target” due to gloomy economic environment in the United States and Europe, as well as lower commodity prices, Bernama reported.
For the first four months of 2013, trade only grew by 1.8%. Last year, Malaysia's total trade increased by 3% to record RM1.31 trillion.
Ariantec Global Bhd said its subsidiary Ariantec Sdn Bhd (ASB) has received a letter of intention from an Indonesian firm appointing it to construct and maintain a high speed broadband network in Pekanbaru, Riau, Indonesia.
The contract, worth US$10 million (about RM32 million), is for a duration of up to three years.
Ariantec said ASB has entered into a collaboration agreement with MDB Technologies (M) Sdn Bhd to undertake the works.
Ariantec said the project will be funded by internal funds and is expected to contribute to its earnings for the years to end-2013 and end-2014.
LUSTER INDUSTRIES BHD  said it has written to the Kedah government to express its intention to participate in the development and upgrading of the Kuala Muda port.
Luster said in a filing with Bursa Malaysia today that the authorities have yet to confirm the matter.
According to Luster, it has "not received any confirmation from the Kedah government as at to date".
Luster's announcement follows a news report quoting its group managing director Lim See Chea as saying the company plans to have further discussions with the Kedah government on the port project.
Luster, the bourse's most-active stock today, fell 0.5 sen or 2.56% to close at 19 sen.
GENTING BHD  may attract interest on news that sympathy for a pod of captive Indo-pacific bottlenose dolphins in Resorts World Singapore will lead to the launch of an international boycott of its casinos next month.
Spearheading the boycott is the Animal Concerns Research and Education Society (ACRES), which has spent the past seven years calling for the dolphins' release from what it describes as "appalling conditions".
ACRES chief executive Louis Ng said Genting does not care about the dolphins but only its casinos.
"Genting has 27 casinos in the United Kingdom and unfortunately for them the British are dolphin lovers," Ng said. "So we will launch the boycott there, in the Philippines, Singapore and Malaysia."
While this move may not get much traction in Asia, he was confident of positive response in the UK.
Ng declared: "Our boycotts will kick off in July.”
GREEN PACKET BHD  said it is open to the possibility of a “strategic sale” of its P1 unit, but currently is more focused on improving its operational and financial performance.
"We are open on strategic options such as this [sale of the P1 unit]," group managing director C.C. Puan told reporters after the group's AGM today.
Puan said he will take on the position as P1's CEO after Michael Lai's resignation.
"But what is more important for me taking on as P1's CEO is our focus on operational excellence and financial performance," he added.
SIME DARBY BHD  announced that it has appointed former Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Abdul Ghani Othman, 66, as chairman with effect next Monday (July 1).
Sime Darby said today Abdul Ghani is also appointed as an independent and non-executive director.
Following his appointment as an independent director, the board of Sime Darby will comprise 13 directors with five independent directors.
Abdul Ghani was the Menteri Besar of Johor from March 1995 to May 2013. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in economics, University of La Trobe, Australia, and a Master’s degree in political economics, University of Queensland.
He lost in the recent general election when he contested against Lim Kit Siang of the DAP in the Gelang Patah parliamentary seat.
INTEGRATED RUBBER CORPORATION  Bhd (IRCB) announced that its wholly-owned subsidiary, Comfort Rubber Gloves Industries Sdn Bhd (CRG), was today served with a notice from Ceebee Chemicals Sdn Bhd to demand for the sum of RM175,460.00 as at 26 March 2013 for goods sold and delivered.
The notice demands CRG to make the payment of the said sum within 21 days from today, failing which winding up proceedings will commence against CRG.
“There will not be a significant impact on the financial and operation of IRCB group should winding up proceedings be taken upon CRG,” said IRCB.
The rubber glove company added it has engaged lawyers to look into the case.