Live news updates: Visits strengthen Taiwan’s resolve to defend itself, president tells US senator
The visits reinforce Taiwan’s determination to defend itself, the president told the US senator
Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen told US Senator Marsha Blackburn that recent visitors from the US have strengthened the island’s resolve to defend itself, as the Tennessee politician became the latest to oppose China’s attempt to curb foreigners to contact Taipei.
The Republican senator arrived in Taiwan on Thursday, shortly after visits by the US congressional delegation and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi last month.
Although US representatives have long traveled to self-governing Taiwan, which China claims as its own, Pelosi’s high-profile visit angered Beijing, which launched unprecedented military exercises around the island in response.
“Authoritarian countries disrupt and threaten world order,” Tsai said at a joint conference with Blackburn on Friday. The recent visitors from the US and “firm show of support have reinforced Taiwan’s determination to defend itself”.
Blackburn, a frequent critic of China, said he hoped to “continue to help and support Taiwan as they move forward as an independent country”.
Tsai also called for the US and Taiwan to “deepen economic and trade cooperation”. His comments came about a week after the two agreed to begin formal talks on a trade initiative that has so far fallen short of Taipei’s hopes for a bilateral free trade deal.
Chinese shares jumped on news of the US-China agreement on audit inspections
New York-listed shares of major Chinese technology groups rose on Thursday, amid signs that the US and China are close to resolving a long-running dispute over the auditing of Chinese companies.
The Golden Dragon index of US-traded Chinese companies closed up more than 6 percent. Depositary receipts linked to shares in tech giant Alibaba rose 8 percent, while ecommerce site JD.com and internet search engine Baidu rose 11 percent and 8 percent, respectively.
Each of these companies is among those recently placed on a watchlist of US-listed foreign businesses that will be banned from trading in New York if they do not provide access to audit files.
The rules, introduced in 2020, have deepened tensions between Washington and Beijing, which do not allow foreign regulators to investigate Chinese company audits.
But this week, bankers were informed of a possible deal between the two superpowers, the Financial Times reported on Thursday, although further information about the agreement and timing was unclear.
What to watch in Asia today
US Senator Marsha Blackburn The politician is set to meet with Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen in Taipei, the latest in a string of foreign visits that have clashed with China’s attempts to rein in the US at the end of House Speaker Nanci Pelosi’s visit to the island in early this month.
Meituan The Chinese food delivery giant reports quarterly results as it comes under pressure from Beijing’s crackdown on the technology sector. Meituan shed $26bn in value in a single trading day in February, when regulators said they would push to lower the fees food platforms can charge restaurants for delivery.
Markets Stocks across Asia look poised for a strong start amid signs the US and China are close to resolving a disagreement over the auditing of Chinese companies, with futures for Hang Hong Kong’s Seng index, Japan’s Topix and Australia’s S&P/ASX. New York-listed depositary receipts linked to shares in major Chinese tech groups jumped on Thursday, alongside broader gains in US equities as investors awaited positive signs from Jackson Hole central bankers’ summit.
Gap lifted its revenue forecast amid economic uncertainty and inventory cuts
Apparel maker Gap withdrew earlier profit guidance, blaming the decision on macroeconomic uncertainty and its ongoing search for a new chief executive.
Gap reported an 8 per cent year-on-year decline in net sales to $3.86bn in the three months to July 30, slightly higher than Wall Street’s forecast. Comparable sales, a popular industry metric, were down 10 percent from a year earlier.
However, the company reported a wider-than-expected loss of 13 cents a share, when analysts had expected a loss of 3 cents a share.
Gap said it was withdrawing its earlier fiscal 2022 outlook due to the “uncertain macro-environment” and its own uncertainty, as it works to find a permanent replacement for Sonia Syngal, who left the company in July . Gap already cut its financial guidance in May after reporting a first-quarter sales decline.
However, Gap said it observed an improvement in sales in July and August as gasoline prices fell.
The results follow a recent trend in the retail sector, with a growing list of companies warning of future uncertainty. Macy’s and Nordstrom on Tuesday reported earnings that topped expectations, but each lowered its full-year outlook.
The judge ordered the issuance of the affidavit of the Trump Mar-a-Lago search warrant to be voided
A US federal judge on Thursday ordered that a redacted version of the affidavit that led to the search of former president Donald Trump’s Florida residence be opened at noon Eastern time on Friday.
The affidavit was used to obtain a search warrant when FBI agents raided Trump’s residence at the Mar-a-Lago club in Florida on August 8. The raid was part of an investigation into possible Espionage Act violations related to the handling Trump’s classified information.
The justice department has requested the parts remain sealed. Magistrate Judge Bruce Reinhart agreed, saying in his order that the government had shown good cause to seal portions of the affidavit because it could reveal “the identities of witnesses, law enforcement agents and non-charged party”, as well as grand jury strategy, direction of investigation, procedure and information.
Reinhart said the redactions are “the least burdensome alternative to sealing the entire affidavit.”
The raid is just one of several mounting legal problems facing Trump, who is considering another run for office in 2024.
The US and China are about to face a dispute over audit inspections
The US and China are close to an agreement that would allow US regulators to access audits of Chinese companies listed on US exchanges, a potential breakthrough in talks that have stalled more than a decade.
Bankers in Hong Kong were notified of a possible deal earlier this week, according to people familiar with the matter. American depositary receipts linked to shares in Chinese companies — including Baidu, JD.com and Pinduoduo — began trading higher on Tuesday, suggesting a resolution is in the works.
An agreement could help resolve the impasse between US and Chinese financial regulators. The US has demanded that Chinese companies and auditors make their financial audits available for inspection every three years by the Public Company Accounting and Oversight Board, a US auditor watchdog, or face a ban from Wall Street listings .
But China does not allow foreign regulators to investigate Chinese company audits, citing a desire to protect state secrets. Earlier this month, five state-owned Chinese companies said they would voluntarily delist from US exchanges before they are delisted in 2024 as a result of the pending ban.
Further information about the potential deal and the timing of a possible announcement were not immediately available, but the PCAOB said any agreement would include full US access to Chinese auditors. The PCAOB declined to comment Thursday.
Read more on the possible deal here.