Correction Appended: March 25, 2013
China‘s Government Revamp — China will revamp government ministries to reduce red tape and fight corruption, notes Bloomberg. The Ministry of Railways will be split, with its administrative duties transferred to the transport ministry and commercial duties spun off to form a new company called China Railway Corporation. The food and drug regulator will be given more power to improve food safety, while maritime law enforcement, including the coast guard, fisheries enforcement command and the anti-smuggling unit, will be handled by the State Oceanic Administration. The government also plans to merge the press and broadcasting regulators and incorporate the family planning commission into the health ministry.
Most Innovative City — Singapore has been named as Asia’s most innovative city in a study conducted by the consultancy Solidiance, reports the Wall Street Journal. Singapore topped the list of 10 innovative Asian cities for its stable politics, limited government regulation and widespread presence of global brands–all of which are conditions that attract “creative” types, such as artists, academics and inventors, to live there, according to the Journal. The Australian cities of Sydney and Melbourne have been listed as the second and third most innovative cities in Asia.
Falklands Referendum – Falkland Islanders are voting for a second day in a referendum to decide whether the territory should remain part of Britain, reports Channel 4 News. Results of the referendum—which was called in response to renewed Argentine claims to the disputed islands and is expected to see the islands’ 1,675 eligible electors vote overwhelmingly in favor of remaining British—are due on Monday night, reports the Daily Telegraph. The predicted result is unlikely to satisfy Argentina, which has condemned the poll as a British propaganda exercise, as the Telegraph reports.
Australian Bank Hacked — Australia’s central bank has been targeted by hackers seeking sensitive information that included negotiations over the G20 meetings, reports the Guardian. Following a report in an Australian newspaper, the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) confirmed that it had “on occasion been the target of cyber attacks” dating back to 2011. One attack took the form of an email, containing an executable malware application, sent to several RBA staff, up to department heads. It was opened by six of them, potentially compromising their workstations. Another attack targeted information relating to the G20 meetings, writes the BBC. As with other recent hacking attacks on governments and corporations, including those targeting the U.S., media suspicion has fallen on China as the source of the attacks, writes the Guardian – although the RBA would not comment on such reports.
Angola Antelope Crisis — Angola is planning drastic action to save an endangered species of antelope—the country’s national symbol—which is being threatened by diamond mining in a nature reserve, reports Bloomberg. Endiama, the state gem company, is thinking about moving the Capunda diamond concession it granted to three mining companies in the Luando nature reserve. Following 27 years of civil war (that ended in 2002) and endemic poaching, there are fewer than 100 surviving giant sable, writes Bloomberg. The animal gives its name to Angola’s national soccer team and is the emblem of the country’s airline, writes Bloomberg. The 320 square-mile Luando reserve is home to four herds totaling 50 to 70 animals. Angola is the world’s fifth-largest producer of diamonds by value, notes Bloomberg.
Correction: The original version of this story misspelled the name of Solidiance.