Google vows to stop individual user tracking
Alphabet Inc's Google on Wednesday pledged to steer clear of tracking individual online activity when it begins implementing a new system for targeting advertisements without the use of so-called "cookies." Google's widely used Chrome browser this month will begin testing an alternative to the tracking practice. Google believes that it can improve privacy while enabling advertisers.
Infosys, Accenture to cover Covid-19 vaccination costs for Indian workers
Information Technology major Infosys Ltd and consulting and outsourcing services provider Accenture Plc said on Wednesday they would cover Covid-19 vaccination costs for their employees in India, as the country expands its massive vaccination drive.
Sharjah sells $1.25 billion in bonds
Banking|: Dubai: The Emirate of Sharjah launched $1.25 billion in two-tranche bonds of 12- and 30-year paper on Wednesday, a document from one of the banks arranging the deal showed. It sold $750 million in 12-year notes at 3.625% and $500 million in 30-year bonds at 4.75% out of combined orders of more than $2.7 billion, the document showed. It had tightened final guidance to between 3.625% and 3.75% for the 12-year notes and 4.75% to 4.875% for the 30-year tranche from initial guidance of around 3.875% for the 12-year bonds and between 4.875% and 5% for the 30-year paper. Bank ABC, Citi, Emirates NBD Capital , HSBC, Mashreq and Standard Chartered are arranging the deal, which is expected to close later on Wednesday.
Chinese hackers are still actively targeting Indian port in shadow war, US firm says
At least one connection opened by Chinese state-sponsored hackers into the network system of an Indian port is still active, even as authorities block attempts to penetrate the nation’s electrical sector, according to the US firm that alerted officials.
Sugar output jumps 20% in Oct-Feb: Report
Indian sugar mills' output rose by a fifth to 23.38 million tonnes in the first five months of the 2020-21 marketing year from a year earlier, while a few mills closed operations ahead of normal schedule, a trade body said on Wednesday.
JLR sets up charging infra at retail outlets
Jaguar Land Rover India on Wednesday said it has set up charging infrastructure across 22 retail outlets in the country as it prepares to launch its all-electric SUV, Jaguar I-Pace, later this month. Twenty two retail outlets across 19 cities are now EV ready in terms of infrastructure, as well as sales and after-sales support, the company said in a statement.
UK Budget: Sunak extends COVID rescue plan but companies to pay more tax from 2023
Business|: London: UK finance minister Rishi Sunak announced a costly extension of his emergency aid programmes to see Britain’s economy through its current coronavirus lockdown, but announced a tax hike for many businesses as he began to focus on fixing the public finances. Delivering an annual budget speech on Wednesday, Sunak said the economy will regain its pre-pandemic size in the middle of 2022, six months earlier than previously forecast, helped by Europe’s fastest COVID-19 vaccination programme. But it will remain 3 per cent smaller in five years’ time than it would have been without the damage wrought by the coronavirus crisis and extra support is needed now as the country remains under coronavirus restrictions, he said. New COVID support Among the new support measures was a five-month extension of his huge jobs rescue plan and more help for the self-employed, the continuation of an emergency increase in welfare payments, and an extension of a VAT cut for the hospitality sector. A tax cut for home-buyers was also extended until the end of June. “First, we will continue doing whatever it takes to support the British people and businesses through this moment of crisis,” Sunak told parliament. “Second, once we are on the way to recovery, we will need to begin fixing the public finances “ and I want to be honest today about our plans to do that. And, third, in today’s Budget we begin the work of building our future economy.” Announcing forecasts by the Office for Budgetary Responsibility (OBR), Sunak said the economy was likely to grow by 4 per cent in 2021, slower than a forecast of 5.5 per cent made in November, reflecting the current lockdown which began in January. Looking further ahead, the OBR forecast gross domestic product would grow 7.3 per cent, 1.7 per cent and 1.6 per cent in 2022, 2023 and 2024 respectively. In November, the OBR had forecast growth in those years of 6.6 per cent, 2.3 per cent and 1.7 per cent. Whatever it takes Sunak promised to do “whatever it takes” to steer the economy through what he hopes will be the final months of pandemic restrictions. He has already racked up Britain’s highest borrowing since World War Two, which hit an estimated 17 per cent of GDP in the 2020/21 financial year that is about to end and should fall to a still historically high 10.3 per cent in 2021/22. In a first move to raise taxes, Sunak announced he would raise corporation tax to 25 per cent from 19 per cent from 2023, by which time the economy should be past the pandemic crisis. “Even after this change the UK will still have the lowest corporation tax rate in the G7 “ lower than the United States, Canada, Italy, Japan, Germany and France,” he said. Businesses with profits of 50,000 pounds or less would pay a new Small Profits Rate, maintained at the current rate of 19 per cent. Sunak also said he would freeze the amount of money that people can earn tax-free and the threshold for the higher rate of income tax until 2026.