Talking points

PUBLISHED : Monday, 21 November, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 21 November, 2011, 12:00am
 

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

Tunisian deal shares top jobs among 3 main parties

Hamadi Jebali (centre) is poised to become Tunisia's new prime minister in the first elected government to emerge from the 'Arab spring' uprisings. In a deal struck by the three main parties, to be officially unveiled today, Jebali, of the Islamist Ennahda party, will take the premier's post and Moncef Marzouki (right), of the Congress for the Republic party, will become president, according to party sources. Mustapha Ben Jaafar (left), of the third-largest party, Ettakatol, will occupy the third key post, president of the constituent assembly. The deal follows historic elections nine months after the January overthrow of dictator Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali, the first ruler toppled in the 'Arab spring'. Jebali spent 15 years in Ben Ali's jails. He has been at pains to allay fears that his party wants to impose an intolerant brand of Islam.

Results out for Primary One discretionary places

Queues of parents will be a feature outside popular Hong Kong schools early this morning, waiting to check the results of applications for Primary One discretionary places for admissions next September. All government and aided primary schools release the results today. Some 45,715 children have applied for discretionary places, but only 20,795 will be offered a place.

Deadline for settlement of Qantas dispute expires

The deadline on talks to resolve Qantas' bitter dispute with unions, which culminated in last month's extraordinary shutdown of the airline, expires but a final deal could be months away. The country's industrial arbiter, Fair Work Australia, gave the airline and three unions 21 days to do a deal on wages and conditions. Chief executive Alan Joyce, who stranded tens of thousands of passengers worldwide in a move the government said threatened the national economy, has said he is optimistic of a resolution by the deadline. Qantas and the unions can take 21 more days for talks if they fail to reach a deal, but all must want the extra time and analysts say this is not the most likely course.

China and US air disagreements on trade

China and the US announce results of the US-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade, designed to air and resolve disputes before they require World Trade Organisation attention. The US is expected to launch complaints about China's lax protection of intellectual property and its ban on US beef, while Beijing is expected to push for relaxation of controls on hi-tech exports to China and more access for Chinese firms to invest in the US.

Briefing on exhibition promoting Marxism

Central Compilation and Translation Bureau director Yi Junqing speaks to the media on an exhibition promoting Marxism, staged as authorities grapple with maintaining Marxism's relevance in a rapidly changing nation.

Secondary housing market a gauge of US economy

Figures on sales of existing homes in the United States due out tonight provide a guide to the strength of housing demand and of the underlying economy. These figures tally the number of sales completed last month of previously constructed homes, condominiums and co-ops. Existing homes account for a larger share of the market than new home sales.

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