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COLUMN-As LME looks east, CME throws down challenge in west: Andy Home

SINGAPORE, May 22- The London Metal Exchange Asia festivities have just wrapped up in Hong Kong. The grand old London lady of metals trading is all part of Charles Li's vision of positioning Hong Kong as the renminbi gateway between mainland China and international markets. The stage is being set for a battle for metals market share in the world outside China.
Source: Reuters | By: Andy Home
China's mega-tours draw attention abroad, critique at home

BEIJING- All-expenses-paid trips to reward top salespeople aren't unusual, but direct marketing companies that are the Chinese versions of Amway, Avon and Herbalife are taking it to an extreme by sending thousands abroad on package tours. One company is sending 12,700 salespeople to Thailand on a tour that continues until next week. vice-chairman Xu Guowei...
Source: The Associated Press | By: By DIDI TANG, Associated Press
Middle East must tackle skills shortage 'urgently'

The Middle East and North Africa region (MENA) is experiencing a substantial deficit of untapped human capital that needs to be tackled now.
Source: CNBC.com | By: Scott Gegenheimer, chief executive of Zain Group
UPDATE 1-Philippines to import 250,000 T of rice, maybe more if El Nino worsens

*Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia qualified to bid. The move would be good news for regional rice markets that have been flagging this year due to oversupply, with an official telling Reuters by text that Vietnam, Thailand and Cambodia were qualified to submit offers. The Southeast Asian nation recently bought 500,000 tonnes via government-to-government deals...
Source: Reuters | By: Enrico Dela Cruz
For insurer AIA Group, Asia is a sweet spot

AIA Group remains committed to the fast-growing region and has no plans to venture abroad, Group CEO and President Mark Tucker said.
Source: CNBC.com | By: Christine Tan
UPDATE 3-McDonald's CEO gets grilled at first annual meeting

LOS ANGELES/ BOSTON, May 21- McDonald's Corp shareholders defied executives at its annual meeting on Thursday, approving a proposal to make it easier to nominate directors to the board of the fast-food chain and taking its new CEO to task over wages, advertising and its food. McDonald's Chief Executive Steve Easterbrook, who took the helm on March 1, is fighting on...
Source: Reuters | By: Lisa Baertlein and Ross Kerber
COLUMN-Funny times in China stocks, joke unclear -James Saft

May 21- Many things about China stocks are funny, but probably not right now to investors in Hanergy Thin Film Power Group, Goldin Financial Holdings or Goldin Properties Holdings. Goldin Financial is a short-term commercial lender but has wide-ranging property interests, while Goldin Properties is a developer. Hong Kong's financial regulator in March...
Source: Reuters | By: James Saft
Don't buy China here: Gartman  

Dennis Gartman, The Gartman Letter, discusses recent activity in Chinese markets and how to invest internationally.
Source: CNBC.com
BOJ to stand pat on policy, may sound more upbeat on economy post-GDP

TOKYO, May 22- The Bank of Japan is set to maintain its massive monetary stimulus on Friday and may offer a slightly more upbeat view of the economy, unfazed by first-quarter GDP data that offered mixed signs on the strength of the recovery. Data on Wednesday showed the world's third-largest economy expanded at an annualised 2.4 percent in the first three months...
Source: Reuters | By: Leika Kihara
Drexel students paid to start businesses  

Christopher Gray, Drexel University student, and Donna De Carolis, Drexel University Dean, discuss Drexel University's "Entrepreneurship Co-op" program.
Source: CNBC.com