Talking points

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 03 November, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 03 November, 2011, 12:00am


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

Debt crisis tops agenda at G20 summit in Cannes

It will be a case of different cast list, different venue, but same old problems when the leaders of the Group of 20 jet in to the south of France for their summit in Cannes. Hosted by French President Nicolas Sarkozy, the two days of talks will begin where last week's euro-zone gathering in Brussels ended - with the deepening sovereign debt crisis in the monetary union. The good news from last week's meeting was that the 17 countries in the single currency bought themselves a respite with their latest bailout package. The bad news was that the respite lasted only two days, and markets have been tumbling this week after Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou announced he would put the bailout terms to a referendum. Both China and the United States have expressed concern and irritation in recent weeks over the failure of the Europeans to 'get their act together', and tackling the debt crisis will be top of the agenda in Cannes.

Wine and spirits fair grows by a third

The Hong Kong International Wine and Spirits Fair opens at the Convention and Exhibition Centre in Wan Chai. Featuring more than 930 exhibitors, the fair is a third bigger than it was last year. It runs until Saturday and will be open to the public on that day. For the first time, there will be a wine investment corner with eight exhibitors, reflecting the boom in the popularity of wine as an investment in recent years.

Philippine military, rebels talk peace in Malaysia

The Philippine military and the country's largest Muslim rebel group head to already shaky peace talks in Malaysia, amid a stand-off over a fugitive guerilla commander accused of beheading marines and the rebels' refusal to surrender him. Military spokesman Colonel Arnulfo Marcelo Burgos said operations aimed at capturing Dan Asnawi on southern Basilan Island would continue, but he stressed that the rebel group was not the target. Asnawi escaped from a Basilan jail in 2009. Nineteen troops were killed on October 18 in a failed attempt to arrest him. It was the biggest military loss in years and sparked calls for President Benigno Aquino to break a truce and order an offensive against the 11,000-strong rebel force.

European Central Bank's new chief meets media

The new president of the European Central Bank, Italy's Mario Draghi, faces the media this evening after a policy meeting, his first news conference as head of the bank. The former governor of the Banca d'Italia succeeded Jean-Claude Trichet on Tuesday.

Chinese research ship sails for Antarctic

The Antarctic research vessel MV Xuelong (Snow Dragon) sets off from Tianjin on China's 28th National Antarctic Expedition. The 164-day mission will carry out 26 scientific expeditions on land and seven in the Southern Ocean, including drilling 120 metres down into Antarctica to obtain core samples of million-year-old ice that will help in studying the effect of previous climate changes.