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Roundup: Eurozone inflation hits 10.7 pct in October as economies slow down

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BRUSSELS, Oct. 31 (Xinhua) — Inflation in the 19-member eurozone is expected to continue rising in October, hitting double digits, against the backdrop of slowing economic growth in the third quarter of 2022, Eurostat, the European Union’s (EU) statistical office, said in a flash estimate on Monday.

Driven mainly by increasing energy prices, October’s year-on-year inflation rate is expected to climb to 10.7 percent in the eurozone, from 9.9 percent in September.

Energy is expected to have the highest annual rate, reaching 41.9 percent in October. The annual rate in September was 40.7 percent.

The prices of food, alcohol and tobacco should register a yearly increase of 13.1 percent in October, compared with 11.8 percent in the previous month.

Non-energy industrial goods should record a year-on-year increase in the price of 6 percent, compared to September’s 5.5 percent; while the price of services should stay stable, going from a yearly increase of 4.3 percent in September to 4.4 percent in October.

“Overall, there is still clear evidence that the second-round effects of the supply-side shocks to the economy keep pushing up inflation despite moderating demand,” Bert Colijn, ING senior economist for the eurozone, commented.

The Baltic countries are hit the hardest by inflation, with 22.4 percent for Estonia, 22 percent for Lithuania and 21.8 percent for Latvia.

While inflation rates are skyrocketing, the eurozone’s economic growth should continue to weaken in the third quarter of this year.

Compared with the previous quarter, Eurostat foresees a 0.2 percent growth of gross domestic product (GDP) for the third quarter of 2022 in both the eurozone and the European Union (EU). In the previous quarter, the GDP growth figures were 0.8 percent for the eurozone and 0.7 percent for the EU.

Latvia, Austria and Belgium recorded negative growth of their GDP, -1.7 percent, -0.1 percent and -0.1 percent, respectively.

Though the recovery of tourism in Spain or a renewed interest in investing in France are seen, this shouldn’t be enough to counter very low consumer confidence — which greatly affects retail sales — higher interest rates and an uncertain economic outlook.

“Overall, the picture remains bleak … We therefore still expect the economy to contract over the coming quarters,” Colijn said.

Last week, the European Central Bank (ECB) increased interest rates by 75 basis points to 1.5 percent to keep inflation in check and to bring the inflation rate closer to its two-percent target.

“With economic conditions weakening and a recession in the making for the winter, we think the ECB is going make its next hike somewhat smaller at 50 basis points,” Colijn said.

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Govt launches ‘Addu Asseyri Tourism Development Plan’

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The Tourism Ministry has launched the ‘Addu Asseyri Tourism Development Plan’, an initiative under the administration’s ‘Hafuthaa 14’ roadmap.

The project was launched in a ceremony attended by Tourism Minister Ibrahim Faisal and Addu City Mayor Ali Nizar in a ceremony held at the Addu City Council on Thursday.

According to the Tourism Ministry, the ‘Addu Asseyri Tourism Development Plan’ is in line with the administration’s ambitious first 100-day pledge to formulate and introduce a specialized tourism project for Addu City.

Developed by CDC Consulting, the comprehensive five-year destination development strategy is accompanied by a detailed situational analysis report.

According to the Tourism Ministry, the plan is strategically crafted to not only enhance tourism in the region, but also to make a substantial contribution to the local economy of Addu, reflecting President Dr. Mohamed Muizzu’s commitment to transformative initiatives.

The plan also encompasses key presidential pledges to Addu city, including the establishment of 6,000 tourist beds, the creation of 10,000 jobs, the revitalization of Shangri-La operations, and the establishment of a seaplane hub within the first year of the presidency.

Tourism Ministry says the initiatives will transform Addu City into a thriving tourism hub, offering unparalleled opportunities for growth and prosperity.

The plan also outlines a range of developments, such as the creation of cultural village, wellness zones, marine protected areas, and hospitality school.

According to the Tourism Ministry, the initiatives not only aim to attract visitors, but also to showcase the rich heritage and natural beauty of Addu City, providing a unique and immersive experience for tourists and locals alike.

Source(s): sun.mv

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No difficulty in purchasing onion from India: STO

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State Trading Organization (STO), the largest imported of food commodities in the Maldives, on Wednesday, assured that there was no difficulty in purchasing onion from India.

Maldives was absent from the list of countries India has granted special permits to export onion to as the South Asian mega power enforces a ban on the export of onions – in effect until March 31st.

Speaking with Sun regarding the matter, STO’s Spokesperson affirmed that there was no difficulty in purchasing onion from India, adding that the country was selling onion to the Maldives in line with the agreement executed previously.

“We are supplying to the extent required by the Maldivian market. There is no difficulty,” the official said.

India imposed the ban to discourage exports, in an effort to curb surging local prices.

The ban led to the price of onions in the Maldives skyrocketing.

Maldives is heavily reliant on India for the importation of essential food commodities, including onions.

The longstanding relations between Maldives and India have been significantly strained since the new administration took office.

President Dr. Mohamed Muizzu, who is maintaining close relations with China, has initiated efforts to cut down Maldives’ reliance on India. In this regard, the president, in January, revealed the execution of an agreement with Türkiye to import food and medication.

Back then, he said the government would collaboratively work with other nations to ensure Maldives is not reliant on one specific nation for staple foods.

Source(s): sun.mv

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Thai contractor to fund mega airport project in Thinadhoo

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The Maldivian government has signed an agreement with Thailand’s Pan Pacific Corp. to develop an international airport after reclaiming land from the lagoon of Thinadhoo City.

The Memorandum of Understanding was signed during a gathering held on Thinadhoo on Tuesday night, as part of President Dr. Mohamed Muizzu’s tour of southern Maldives.

Addressing the gathering after the signing ceremony, Infrastructure Minister Dr. Abdulla Muthalib said the entire project will be financed by the contractor.

The project involves:

  • Construction of a runway big enough to accommodate the largest airplanes
  • The establishment of a premium aviation school
  • The establishment of a fuel farm
  • The establishment of a cargo facilities
  • Development of a seaplane hub

In addition to building the airport, the contractor will also invest in the development of 12 resorts – which will create 2,000 new tourist beds.

Source(s): sun.mv

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