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The Asian Development Bank is launching a new fund that will buy coal power plants in order to shut them down early, taking a new approach to the energy transition.

ADB is launching the pilot fund of $2.5bn to $3.5bn, called the Energy Transition Mechanism, that will focus on buying plants in Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam. Coal is the dirtiest fossil fuel in terms of emissions, but widely used to generate power in regions such as Asia.

The programme aims to close down 50 per cent of coal-fired power plants in those three countries, which would cost

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Maersk is spending more than $1bn to push deeper into air freight, as the world’s largest container shipping group and one of the biggest winners of the global supply chain crisis looks to strengthen its logistics offering.

The Danish group is buying Senator International, a German freight forwarding company that is strong in air cargo, in a $644m deal. It is also leasing three new aircraft from next year and buying two more in 2024.

The acquisition came as Maersk on Tuesday released third-quarter results that underlined how the group has benefited from the sky-high freight rates unleashed by the

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Jes Staley is stepping down as Barclays’ chief executive following a regulatory investigation into the way he described his relationship with disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein.

In a statement on Monday, the bank said it was made aware of the results of the investigation by UK financial regulators the FCA and PRA on Friday and that: “In view of those conclusions, and Mr Staley’s intention to contest them, the board and Mr Staley have agreed that he will step down from his role as group chief executive and as a director of Barclays.”

It added: “It should be noted that the

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Manufacturing activity in China shrank for a second-straight month in October, as the fallout from the country’s property sector downturn and energy shortages spreads through the world’s second-biggest economy.

China’s manufacturing purchasing managers’ index was 49.2 in October, below the 50-point threshold that indicates expansion rather than contraction, official data showed on Sunday.

The PMI data marks the latest sign of a worsening economic slowdown as weakening property construction activity and high commodity prices dampen industrial demand.

The gauge’s decline from 49.6 in September also reflects electricity supply disruptions hitting factories from China’s northern rustbelt to the high-tech workshops in

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US allies are lobbying Joe Biden not to change American policy on the use of nuclear weapons amid concern the president is considering a “no first use” declaration that could undermine long-established deterrence strategies aimed at Russia and China.

The lobbying — by treaty allies including Britain, France and Germany in Europe, and Japan and Australia in the Indo-Pacific — comes as the Biden administration is in the middle of a “nuclear posture review”, a regular inter-agency process that sets US policy on nuclear weapons.

Although some allies believe Biden will refrain from setting a “no first use” policy in

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Apple shares fell after the world’s largest company missed earnings estimates owing to the global chip crisis, which it said would linger into the holiday period.

Tim Cook, chief executive, said “larger than expected supply constraints” cost the company $6bn in the three months to September, adding that the shortages would cost it even more in the holiday period — its most lucrative time of the year.

Supply constraints “affected the iPhone, the iPad and the Mac”, Cook told investors, citing chip shortages and “Covid-related manufacturing disruptions” in south-east Asia.

The company reported $83.4bn of revenue in its fiscal fourth

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