India breaks silence on China-Maldives FTA
India on 14 December 2017 gave a shielded response to the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) signed between China and the Maldives as it has still not seen the full document and could not comment on its contents.
Maldives signed FTA with China on 7 December 2017. It was one of 12 agreements signed during President Abdulla Yameen’s first state visit to China.
The Free Trade Agreement commits both nations to reduce tariffs on most imported goods to zero. The FTA would open up the Chinese consumer market to Maldivian fish products.
The agreement will endorse China's Maritime Silk Road (MSR) project that was shunned by India for its strategic implications in the Indian Ocean. This MSR project is part of China-backed multi-billion-dollar Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).
Disney to acquire 21st Century Fox assets for USD 52.4 Billion in stock
Disney on 14 December 2017 reached a deal to acquire certain assets of 21st Century Fox (FOXA), the parent company of FOX Business, for approximately USD 52.4 billion in stock.
The total transaction is valued at USD 66.1 billion, including 21st Century Fox’s debt. The deal includes 21st Century Fox assets- Twentieth Century Fox Film and Television studios, along with cable and international TV businesses like Star India.
Prior to the acquisition, Fox will separate the Fox Broadcasting network and stations, Fox News Channel, Fox Business Network, FS1, FS2 and Big Ten Network into a newly listed company.
Robert Iger will remain the Chairman and CEO of Disney through 2021.
NASA spots eighth planet Kepler-90i in solar system
NASA has recently discovered an eighth planet circling Kepler-90, a Sun-like star which is 2545 light-years far from Earth. The newly-discovered planet Kepler-90i was discovered in data from NASA’s Kepler Space Telescope.
Kepler-90i is a hot rocky planet that orbits its star once every 14.4 days. It was discovered using machine learning from Google.
Machine learning is an approach to artificial intelligence in which computers learn.