Kaesong, North Korea: The managers of this capitalist enclave in communist North Korea are appealing for the world’s support, saying their experiment in free markets can pave the way for regional peace. Kaesong supporters are aiming for the city to emulate Shenzhen, the special economic zone bordering Hong Kong, which kick-started China’s economic boom, and say this will narrow the huge economic gap between North and South Korea with the help of foreign support.
Liupanshui, China: Chinese police have detained the vice-principal of a school for deaf-mutes and other special needs children for selling 10 students to a ring that trained them to become pickpockets, the Guizhou Metropolitan Daily reported.
Singapore: In a shock exit, the University of New South Wales will abandon its Singaporean campus at the end of next month just one semester after it opened its doors, losing millions and precious face in the export education market. It was banking on a student population of 15,000 over the next 20 years, but decided to close after enrolling fewer than 150 students.
Mumbai, India: As India witnesses a spurt in property prices, its financial capital Mumbai has been ranked as one of the world’s top 10 expensive locations in terms of accommodation cost. Shanghai is ranked eigth.
Naypyidaw, Myanmar: The Chinese Foreign Ministry has published an unflattering account of Myanmar’s new capital, expressing surprise that such a poor country would consider such an expensive move and not even tell Beijing, its erstwhile ally.
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia: Malaysia’s 40 richest business people are worth US$43 billion — a 65 percent jump from 2006 — with former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad’s son joining the list, Forbes Asia magazine said Thursday.
Jakarta, Indonesia: An Indonesian girl has died of bird flu and Vietnam reported yesterday its first suspected human infection since late 2005, in a string of cases across Asia when the H5N1 virus is usually less active.
Brunei: Michael Jackson will soon be richer by 5 million pounds, and he doesn’t even have to sing or dance for it. As it turns out, HRH Prince Azim of Brunei is such a big fan of Jacko that he is actually paying him a whopping 5 million pounds — just to attend his 25th birthday bash this weekend in the UK.
Image of Myanmar’s gleaming new capital, Naypyidaw, from klark_tarzan.