Discover more from The Coffee Break
☕️ Rina Harun: government has no plans to ban child marriages, but committed to preventing it
KJ called out Najib Razak for not paying 5 Covid-19 SOP violation fines. Do not fake lost IC police report, risk 6 months jail. Apple and Porsche discussed joint projects, too early for any decision.
Share the joy of our newsletter and get rewarded - join The Coffee Break’s [beta] referral programme. We are open for sign-ups here!
1. MARKET SUMMARY
2. NUMBERS AT A GLANCE
1 trillion yuan (RM674.4 bil) in tax rebates will be given to small domestic firms by China, according to a cabinet meeting on Monday. The move aims to boost economic stability.
USD214 bil — the amount wealthy Russians stash in secretive Swiss bank accounts, according to the Swiss Bankers Association. The revelation is unusual because Switzerland is known for its banking secrecy but came after its move to sanction Russia over its invasion of Ukraine.
1.1 million people in America work for Amazon, making it the country’s second-biggest private employer after Walmart. The Amazon effect — a 10% increase in Amazon’s average hourly wages led other companies in the same region to raise wages by an average of 2.3%
3. COVID-19 SUMMARY
Malaysia recognises Vietnam’s Covid-19 vaccination certificate as Vietnam used vaccines approved by WHO and also recognised Malaysia’s vaccination certificate.
Zero to Market is an online workshop that helps beginners build a custom-built website in 30 days through active learning and daily activities. The program fees are RM3,299.
As you’ve probably guessed, the best time to start anything important was years ago. The second best time to start is right now. The Coffee Break readers get RM600 off to Zero to Market. Use coupon code: 'CREMA'.
4. IN MALAYSIA 🇲🇾
Former PM Najib Razak said in his Facebook post that MPs who recently hugged Lim Kit Siang (Covid-19 positive) should be placed under home quarantine and questioned the inaction by the Health Ministry over the hugging pictures that violated SOPs.
Responding to Najib, Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin (KJ) said via Twitter that the compound has already been issued to LKS. The funny thing is - Najib himself is falling short on adhering to the SOPs and paying the fines. In the same tweet, KJ urged Najib to pay the five fines issued to him during the recent Johor election, which only one was successfully handed over to Najib and whilst the other four was refused to be accepted by Najib’s officer. Najib responded that he will be paying the 5 fines but questioned why no fines against the people that hugged LKS.
What happens if you lose your IC? Make a police report but do not make up stories that you lose it due to a crime. The fine for the first loss will be RM100; the second, RM300; and the third, RM1,000 but will be exempted if the loss is due to crime or disaster. There were 1,546 false reports on lost ICs recorded from 2019 to 2021 to save from paying these fines. Police rep said that people tend to underestimate the police force in unearthing the truth, with some offenders ending up spending the night in police lock-up. The penalty is RM2,000 or six months’ imprisonment. So, just tell the truth, it’s a lot cheaper - no fun dropping your soap bar in prison.
Women, Family and Community Development Minister Rina Harun says the government does not plan to ban underage marriages but remains committed to preventing it by implementing programmes (e.g. education, advocacy).
Eight MPs and a senator in a joint statement have criticised the ministry’s stance. It highlighted that in 2020, 445 students (411 female, 34 male) dropped out of school to get married.
Not banning but committed to preventing? Sounds contradicting and pointless. Wouldn’t it be a lot more cost-effective to ban it outright instead of spending money on running programmes? What actual benefits are there, especially towards minors, for allowing underage marriage?
Another day, another series of corruption cases in Bolehland: :
A senior police officer was sentenced to 10 years’ jail and fined RM42 mil on eight charges of money laundering involving RM3.35 mil, with part of the sum being monies received from 2 operators of illegal gambling activities for him not to take action against their activities.
3 directors (one with the title ‘Datuk’) and two former directors of an engineering firm have been detained by the MACC to assist in a corruption case related to the MRT project worth over RM650 mil. The two former company directors are believed to have received RM27 mil from another engineering firm as a kickback to be appointed as a consultant for the project in 2017.
Former Johor Corporation (JCorp) president and CEO Kamaruzzaman Abu Kassim has been charged with deceiving and persuading its board of directors to invest USD2.25 mil (RM9.46 mil) in 2 companies in 2019.
Sime Darby Holdings Bhd has confirmed that it has received a confidential, conditional and non-binding proposal from IHH Healthcare to wholly acquire its 50:50 healthcare joint venture Ramsay Sime Darby Health Care Sdn Bhd, valuing the indicative enterprise value of the JV at USD1.35 bil (RM5.67 bil) on a cash-free, debt-free basis. However, discussions are preliminary and no agreement has been reached yet. IHH Healthcare is listed on Bursa Malaysia, with a market cap of RM57.3 bil.
Malaysia Airlines Bhd will increase capacity to selected international routes following the gradual reopening of borders around the world. Now you can pack your bags and visit London, Bali, Bangkok, Phuket, India and Australia in the coming weeks with more frequent flights.
Capital A Bhd is expecting its aviation business, AirAsia, to recover to 90% of its pre-Covid-19 passenger capacity level by end of the year. It currently operates 75 aircraft (60% servicing domestic flights and the balance in Thailand, Indonesia and Philippines), about 38% of its total fleet of 200 aircraft.
Farm Fresh Bhd (ticker: FFB) debuted yesterday on Bursa Malaysia and popped to as high as RM1.86, 37.8% higher than its IPO price of RM1.35. It ended the day at RM1.72, 27.4% above its opening price.
If you were fortunate to get the IPO allocation, congrats! Come, spare some of your milk money and buy us a coffee.
5. AROUND THE WORLD 🌎
Ukraine’s president Volodymyr Zelensky urged Italian parliamentarians to save the lives of millions by stopping one person — Vladimir Putin. Zelensky said Russian troops had killed 117 children and left “millions of homes abandoned”. Italian prime minister Mario Draghi publicly endorsed Ukraine’s bid for EU membership yesterday.
China Evergrande Group’s property services unit is investigating how 13.4 billion yuan (RM8.8 billion) of its deposits were used as security for pledge guarantees and enforced by banks. The incident was discovered when the firm was preparing its annual report. The embattled developer would not be able to publish its 2021 financial results by Mar 31, 2022, as audit work has yet been completed.
Alibaba Group Holding Ltd ramps up its repurchase program from USD15 bil to USD25 bil. Alibaba had accumulated USD46 billion in cash as of the latest quarter. It may have a domino effect — other cash-rich Chinese internet firms may follow suit. Share buybacks are common amongst tech firms to boost the value of the stocks.
Late last year, managers at sportscar maker Porsche travelled to the United States to discuss possible joint projects with Apple, according to Oliver Blume, Porsche’s CEO. He added the two companies were on the same wavelength, but it was too soon to make any decisions.
Sony announced that it has entered an agreement to acquire Montreal-based Haven Studios. The price of the deal wasn’t disclosed. The first title from Haven will be a new AAA multiplayer game, probably exclusive to the PlayStation 5. Sony has its eyes set on live service games.
Britain’s Royal Mint wants to extract gold from electronic waste. The government-owned company which manufactures precious metal products and coins said it would use what it called “patented new chemistry” from a Canada-based firm called Excir to recover gold from used cell phones and laptops. Literally minting it.
6. FOR YOUR EYES 👁👁
Elon Musk officially opened Tesla’s first manufacturing facility in Europe — the carmaker’s 5 billion euro (USD5.5 billion) plant in Germany. He showed his moves too.
Pradeep Mehra, A 19-year-old employee of McDonald’s in India, runs 10km after his shifts — to practise for joining the army. Award-winning filmmaker Vinod Kapri recorded it.
The beginner’s guide to buying cryptocurrency on Luno (SC-licensed digital asset exchange)