Kim Jong-un

Talking points

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 07 January, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 07 January, 2012, 12:00am

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

All quiet in North Korea for Kim's big day

The birthday of North Korea's new leader Kim Jong-un (pictured) is tomorrow, but celebrations may be muted in light of the recent death of his father. Since Kim Jong-il died of a heart attack on December 17, state media have launched campaigns to idolise the new leader in a similar way to his late father and his grandfather Kim Il-sung. The birthday of Kim Jong-il on February 16 and of Kim Il-sung on April 15 are two of the country's most important holidays, often marked by fireworks and extra food rations.

Many apply, few will be chosen

More than 1.6 million candidates will start the mainland's three-day national entrance examination for the postgraduate education programme. The government said the number of candidates rose by 9.6 per cent from 2011. But state media report that the chances of these candidates - many from mediocre colleges - to get into top-notch schools are getting slimmer.

Lunar New Year travel rush begins

The 40-day Lunar New Year travel rush begins tomorrow. For many migrant workers, this is their only chance to visit their families. Mainland railways are expected to carry an estimated 235 million passengers, and state planners estimate that total public transport volumes will rise by 9.1 per cent from last year to 3.16 billion trips.

City space initiative to hold seminar

The Hong Kong Public Space Initiative will hold a seminar to discuss its vision for waterfront promenades at the West Kowloon Cultural District, Kai Tak and New Central Harbourfront. Among the guest speakers is Secretary for Development Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor (pictured). It will be held from 10am at HKICC Lee Shau Kee School of Creativity in Junction Road, Kowloon.

New round for Republican contenders

A pair of weekend debates could be the last chance for conservative Republican presidential hopefuls to prove who is the best alternative to front runner Mitt Romney ahead of next week's New Hampshire primary. The debates will be lively as it will be a last realistic chance for others vying for the ticket to challenge President Barack Obama in November. Just as the Iowa caucuses prompted Minnesota congresswoman Michele Bachmann to quit the race, a poor showing in New Hampshire could send another candidate packing.

All-in-one PC jumps the gun on Las Vegas expo

An all-in-one desktop PC for families called the HP Omni will go on sale today, according to California-based Hewlett-Packard. It will also release the HP Pavilion HPE h9 Phoenix, a tower-style PC for gamers. The PCs make their debut two days before the annual Consumer Electronics Show (pictured) in Las Vegas, where firms unveil a slew of new handheld gadgets, tablets and super-thin laptops, or ultrabooks. The all-in-one PC rollout is HP's move at targeting a piece of the desktop market that is still doing well.