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Philippines Orders Nearly 3,000 Overstaying Chinese to Leave

Whitbread Posts Adj. Loss In H1 – Quick Facts

Whitbread plc (WTB.L) reported a pretax loss of 724.7 million pounds for the 6 months to 27 August 2020 compared to profit of 219.9 million pounds, prior year. Loss per share was 377.4 pence compared to profit of 89.2 pence. Statutory loss before tax included a non-cash impairment charge of 339.9 million pounds relating to goodwill in Germany, property, plant and equipment and right-of-use assets, as a result of impairment reviews triggered by the COVID-19 situation. Before adjusting items, pretax loss was 367.4 million pounds compared to profit of 235.6 million pounds. Before adjusting items, loss per share was 181.9 pence compared to profit of 96.6 pence.

First half revenue declined to 250.8 million pounds from 1.08 billion pounds. The Group said total sales were significantly down year-on-year reflecting the closure of the vast majority of its hotels and restaurants for a large part of the period.

Ex-Trump Officials Line Up Against Him In Damning New Republican Ad

Several key officials who’ve served in high-level positions in the administration of President Donald Trump are speaking out against him in a new video from Republican Voters Against Trump. 

And they’re urging Americans to vote for his Democratic rival, former Vice President Joe Biden. 

“We are less safe today because of his leadership,” says Elizabeth Neumann, who was an assistant secretary of the Department of Homeland Security until April. 

“It is so much worse than it looks,” says Miles Taylor, who served as chief of staff of the Department of Homeland Security from 2017 to 2019. 

“We will no longer be America after four more years of Trump,” warns Olivia Troye, a former senior aide to Vice President Mike Pence who was involved in the coronavirus task force until July. 

All three have endorsed Biden. 

The new spot also includes outside footage of former national security adviser John Bolton, who has said that Trump is not fit for office and that said he is voting against him. However, Bolton has also said he isn’t voting for Biden, either. 

Tens of thousands stage anti-France rally in Bangladesh capital

DHAKA (AFP) – Tens of thousands of protesters marched through the Bangladesh capital on Tuesday (Oct 27) calling for a boycott of French products and burning an effigy of President Emmanuel Macron after he defended cartoons depicting the Prophet Mohammed.

Police estimated that more than 40,000 people took part in the march organised by an Islamist party which was halted before it could get close to the French embassy in Dhaka.

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Plus500 Q3 Group Revenue Surges 96%

Plus500 Ltd. (PLUS.L) reported a 96% surge in its third-quarter group revenue, driven by unprecedented market conditions continuing to provide trading opportunities for customers.

Group revenue for the quarter soared 96% to $216.4 million from $110.6 million generated in the same period of last year.

Group EBITDA increased by 91% to $134.2 million from the previous year’s $70.1 million.

Customer Income grew by 124% in the quarter to $240.0 million versus $107.1 million reported a year ago, reflecting the strong underlying performance of the business. Customer Trading Performance was $23.6 million versus $3.5 million last year, and remained at relatively modest levels for the year to date, the company said.

David Zruia, Chief Executive Officer, said, “Plus500 has delivered an excellent performance during Q3 2020, building on the positive momentum already achieved in the first half of the year. This performance has been driven by the quality and differentiation of our proprietary technology, which has enabled our business to consistently support our customers in these unprecedented market conditions.”

Pompeo Pushes Closer India Ties to Counter China Threat

U.S. Secretary of State Michael Pompeo has pushed for closer ties with India to confront China’s “threats” to security in the region.

The two sides have a lot to discuss, including “our cooperation on the pandemic that originated in Wuhan, to confronting the Chinese Communist Party’s threats to security and freedom to promoting peace and stability throughout the region,” Pompeo said during a visit in the capital New Delhi on Tuesday.

Pompeo is in India with Defense Secretary Mark Esper for a 2+2 ministerial meeting with foreign minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar and defense minister Rajnath Singh, where they will discuss cooperation on pandemic response and challenges in the Indo-Pacific.

The discussions are taking place barely a week before presidential elections in the U.S. and at a time when India, a member of the informal four-nation Quad grouping along with America, Japan and Australia, is in talks to de-escalate military tensions with Beijing.

The two sides are also expected to sign an agreement Tuesday which will give New Delhi access to U.S. geo-spatial intelligence to help improve the accuracy of automated hardware systems, missiles and drones, according to an Indian defense ministry statement.

Philippines Orders Nearly 3,000 Overstaying Chinese to Leave

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The Philippines’ Bureau of Immigration has ordered almost 3,000 Chinese nationals to leave, after their 30-day visas given to tourists upon arrival lapsed.

More than half of those ordered to leave were blacklisted from the Philippines for failing to present sufficient basis for their stay, Immigration chief Jaime Morente said in a statement Tuesday. The visa-upon-arrival program — launched three years ago to lure Chinese tourists and accounts for 5% of arrivals from China — remains suspended due to the pandemic, he said.

The Southeast Asian nation has recently been scrutinizing special visas given to Chinese nationals, following lawmakers’concerns over security and illegal employment inonline casinos. It suspended processing ofretirement visas for foreigners after the Senate found out that 28,000 Chinese nationals as young as 35 year old were given privileges.

Pandemic Threatens to Burst Philippines’ Online Gaming Bubble