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Japan Cabinet Approves Biggest Defence Budget

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's cabinet on Thursday approved Japan's biggest annual defence budget in the face of North Korea's nuclear and missile threats and a territorial row with China.

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Saudi Arabia Deficit Persists but Lower than Expected

OPEC kingpin Saudi Arabia on Thursday projected another budget deficit in 2017 but reported a less-than-expected shortfall for this year after cutbacks in the face of lower oil prices.

It is the first budget since the kingdom, aiming for a balanced budget by 2020, announced a wide-ranging plan to wean the economy off its oil dependency.

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Dubai's 2017 Budget Foresees $681-Million Deficit

The Dubai government in the United Arab Emirates on Wednesday announced its 2017 budget foreseeing a deficit of 2.5 billion dirhams ($681 million, 652 million euros) and 3 percent expenditure increase.

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Libya Pipeline Deal Set to Boost Output

Protesters who shut off two Libyan oil pipelines, one for more than two years, have lifted their blockade, paving the way for a production boost, the National Petroleum Company said.

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EU to Tighten Screws on Terror Financing

The European Union on Wednesday proposed tighter checks on cash and gold transfers as part of a crackdown on terrorist financing across a bloc grappling with a wave of terrorism.

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Ukraine Adopts Austerity Budget Along IMF Lines

Ukraine's parliament on Wednesday approved an austerity federal budget for 2017 that doubles minimum wages but keeps the deficit in line with the target set by the International Monetary Fund.

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Asian Markets Pick up US Baton, Resume Rally

Most Asian markets turned higher Wednesday as investors tracked another record on Wall Street and refocused on the global economy after two deadly attacks.

The Berlin Christmas market horror and shooting of Russia's Turkish ambassador fanned concerns that fresh geopolitical woes could upend a rally in world assets triggered by Donald Trump's election as US president.

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Erdogan Opens First Road Tunnel under Istanbul's Bosphorus

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday opened the first ever road tunnel underneath the Bosphorus Strait in Istanbul, the latest project in his plan of transforming Turkey's infrastructure.

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Qatari Banks Hold $44-Billion Merger Talks

Three Qatari banks announced Tuesday that they are in merger talks to create a financial institution with assets of more than $44 billion.

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Greek Vote on Tax Help for Migrant Islands Pushed to Wednesday

A Greek parliament vote on a special tax allowance for Aegean islands struggling to accommodate thousands of migrants has been pushed to Wednesday, the chamber said.

The vote scheduled to be held late on Monday will be held on Wednesday evening after an opposition party called for a show of hands on the bill.

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