News Column

Kyodo news summary -4-

February 5, 2014

TOKYO, Feb. 6 -- (Kyodo) _ ---------- Nepalese man dies after drinking challenge

KATHMANDU - A 47-year-old Nepalese man who drank a 750-millilitter bottle of whiskey in five minutes to win a bet died on Tuesday after nearly three weeks of agony, police said Thursday.

Pancharam Bishwokarma, who ran a gold jewelry shop about 300 kilometers east of the capital Kathmandu, won the bet but lost his life, according to police inspector Sanjeev Khadka.

---------- Switzerland ready to facilitate Japan-N. Korea talks: President

TOKYO - Switzerland hopes to serve as an intermediary and provide a neutral location for potential dialogue between Japan and North Korea on the issue of Pyongyang's past abduction of Japanese nationals, Swiss President Didier Burkhalter said Thursday in Tokyo.

Switzerland is "eager to act as a go-between for talks with any countries in the Asia-Pacific region to enhance regional security," Burkhalter told a press conference in the capital.

---------- Sony agrees to sell Vaio computer business to investment fund

TOKYO - Sony Corp. has agreed to sell its Vaio computer business to a Tokyo-based investment fund in an effort to revive the struggling business, sources close to the matter said Thursday.

By selling to Japan Industrial Partners Inc., the electronics maker aims to turn around the business, which has floundered in the face of fierce price competition.

---------- KDDI, Sumitomo in talks to take part in Myanmar mobile market

TOKYO - Telecommunications service provider KDDI Corp. and trading company Sumitomo Corp. are negotiating to tie up with the Myanmar Posts and Telecommunications as a way to enter Myanmar's mobile phone service market, sources close to the matter said Thursday.

Last year the KDDI-Sumitomo team lost out in the international bidding for a Myanmar mobile phone business license.

---------- Keidanren to pick 4 new vice chairmen under next leader Sakakibara

TOKYO - The Japan Business Federation will nominate four new vice chairmen under its next leader Sadayuki Sakakibara, chairman of major textile and fiber maker Toray Industries Inc., industry sources said Thursday.

The four are Hiroaki Nakanishi, 67, president of Hitachi Ltd., Hiroo Unoura, 65, president of Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corp. or NTT, Yasushi Kimura, 65, chairman of JX Holdings Inc., and Nobuyuki Koga, 63, chairman of Nomura Securities Co.

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Source: Japan Economic Newswire

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