Talking points

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 19 July, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 19 July, 2012, 12:00am


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Our editors will be looking ahead today to these developing stories ...

Indonesian minister bids to salvage 'Asean unity'

Indonesia's foreign minister, Marty Natalegawa (pictured), who has embarked on a hastily arranged tour of Southeast Asian capital cities, is expected in Phonm Penh in the next few days, where, he told reporters, he would attempt to salvage 'Asean cohesion and unity on the South China Sea'. Cambodia has been blamed for the failure at last week's summit of the 10-nation Association of Southeast Asian Nations to agree on a joint communique on territorial disputes with China. Marty immediately won support for his mission on his first stop in Manila yesterday and was due in Hanoi last night.

Chinese students polled on attitudes to colonialism

Hong Kong-based student organisations New Youth Forum and Cross Strait Exchange Association will announce the results of a survey that canvassed more than 2,500 Hong Kong, Taiwan, Macau and mainland university students on their views of colonialism. The pollsters say initial results indicate Hong Kong students think more favourably of the city's former British colonial government than students elsewhere in China.

Microsoft expected to report first quarterly loss

For the first time since it went public in 1986, Microsoft is scheduled to report a quarterly loss - on paper, at least - when it announces its results. The fourth-quarter figures are expected to reflect the US$6.2 billion writedown of a 2007 internet-advertising acquisition. Last week, Vanity Fair magazine blamed CEO Steve Ballmer's (pictured) 'astonishingly foolish' leadership for a 'lost decade'. Reuters says Wall Street thinks Microsoft still stands a chance of reclaiming its former glory but will want hard reasons to pay more than US$30 for a stock that has not traded above that for any extended period since 2000.

Exam chiefs hold briefing on debut DSE results

The Examinations and Assessment Authority holds a briefing on tomorrow's release of the first Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education results. Most of the 70,000 students have taken six subjects, the minimum needed for top university courses. The diploma replaces A-levels, which were run for the last time this year, and the Hong Kong Certificate of Education Exam, which used to be taken in Form Five.

Lawmakers to vote for India's new president

India's finance minister, Pranab Mukherjee (pictured), is likely to be chosen as successor to President Pratibha Patil, who has reached the end of her five-year term. The president, who fulfils a mainly ceremonial role, will be elected by an electoral college consisting of MPs from the federal Parliament's two houses and lawmakers from the state legislatures. The president is the supreme commander of India's armed forces and has to approve all new legislation, but all executive power is held by the prime minister and his cabinet.

Charles & Di upper crust up for auction

Auctioneers in England will be offering for sale today a slice of toast which they say was left over from the breakfast served to Prince Charles on the day he married Lady Diana Spencer in London on July 29, 1981. It is expected to sell for GBP500 (HK$6,063).