The Asia Eight

Daily must-reads from the world’s most dynamic region

April 1, 2021

1 THE ATF BIG PICTURE: Singapore mulls SPAC-friendly rules

2 ATF TV: Fintechs playing a vital role for migrant workers

3 ASIA MARKETS: US infrastructure plan boosts risk appetite

4 COMMENT: Xinjiang cotton controversy puts heat on brands

5 NEWS: Boeing urges delink of rights and China engagement

6 NEWS: Biden proposes huge $2tn infrastructure jobs plan

7 NEWS: Xiaomi to invest $10bn in electric vehicle business

8 NEWS: Huawei posts 2020 profit rise despite sanctions hit

01 Top Story/Big Picture

Singapore considers new rules to lure more SPACs

Stock market proposing to allow only independent shareholders to vote on merger proposals so sponsors won't be able to force decisions on business combinations

02 ATF TV Fintechs filling finance gap for migrants Fintechs are helping to bring critical financial services to migrant workers and the unbanked, says Varun Mittal, the global emerging market fintech leader at EY 

03 Asia Markets Biden plan gives boost to risk appetite

Oil surges ahead of OPEC+ meeting; Dollar gains on Biden plan, eyeing blowout jobs numbers; China Caixin PMI disappoints

04 Comment Cotton heat

Western retailers are being squeezed in an ethical debate over lucrative returns in the huge China market, or claims of forced labour, which China rejects; but geopolitical tension has risen because of other factors as well

05 Boeing urges delink

Chief executive expresses hope that intellectual property and other issues can be split so free trade environment between two economic juggernauts is encouraged

06 Biden's infra jobs promise

Republicans slam employment plans as 'far-left demands' after president plans to raise corporate taxes to 28% to help pay for projects that put millions of people in work

07 Xiaomi EV investment

The company will set up an EV subsidiary and is pledging to invest $10 billion over the next 10 years in the business

08 Huawei posts profit rise

The Shenzhen-based company reported $136.7 billion in group revenue with net profit of $9.83 billion, up 3.2% compared to 2019