Wed, 21 Oct 2020

BOGOTA -- Colombia's central bank said on Friday that it has lowered the benchmark interest rate by 0.25 percentage points to 1.75 percent to reactivate the economy amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

"After the relaxation of lockdown measures, a slower rate of deterioration of economic activity has been observed; however, economic activity continues to contract. For this reason, the technical team at the Bank of the Republic estimates that the economy will contract between 6 and 10 percent in 2020," the central bank said in a statement. (Colombia-Economy-Interest rates)

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ISLAMABAD -- Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan called on developed countries and international money lenders to extend and expand debt suspension for developing countries in order to help them recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Debt relief is one of the best ways to create needed fiscal space for developing countries, Khan said while virtually addressing the 75th session of the United Nations General Assembly Friday night, adding that his country appreciates the G20's official debt suspension initiative and the emergency and rapid financing offered by international lenders, but it is still not enough for developing countries facing the pandemic. (Pakistan-Debt Relief-UN)

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NEW YORK -- U.S.-listed Chinese companies traded mostly higher on Friday, with seven of the top 10 stocks by weight in the S&P U.S. Listed China 50 index ending the day higher.

E-commerce platform and electric vehicle maker NIO led the gainers by picking up 2.68 percent and 2.63 percent, respectively. (US-Stocks)

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LIMA -- Peruvian President Martin Vizcarra announced on Friday that international flights will resume on Oct. 5.

The approval of this measure occurred within the implementation of Phase 4 of the country's economic reactivation, Vizcarra said after a meeting with his Council of Ministers. (Peru-Flights)

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BRUSSELS -- The European Commission has decided to appeal a European court ruling which absolved U.S. technology giant Apple from repaying Ireland 13 billion euros (about 15.12 billion U.S. dollars) in tax arrears, the Commission's Executive Vice-President Margrethe Vestager said on Friday.

"In its judgment the General Court has made a number of errors of law. For this reason, the Commission is bringing this matter before the European Court of Justice," said Vestager in a statement. (EU-Apple-Appeal)

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