FirstFT: Sri Lankan president resigns

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Gotabaya Rajapaksa offered to resign as President of Sri Lanka after fleeing to Singapore, having been forced out of office due to widespread protests over his country’s economic collapse.

The Speaker of the Sri Lankan Parliament said on Thursday evening that Rajapaksa had resigned from Singapore, but that the official announcement would not be made until Friday “after a vetting process and legal formalities.”

Singapore’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs previously released a brief statement confirming that Rajapaksa was allowed to enter the city-state on a “private visit”, adding that he did not seek asylum.

Analysts said Rajapaksa’s delay in submitting his resignation letter was likely deliberate to maintain diplomatic immunity while he sought asylum in a country that would accept him.

The massive protests in Colombo are among the most serious outbreaks of political unrest seen this year in emerging markets, which are suffering from rising food and fuel prices and shrinking credit caused by the war in Ukraine.

Thank you for reading FirstFT Asia. Now for the rest of the news of the day – Emily

Mario Draghi proposes to step down as Italian prime minister Italy plunged into political turmoil Thursday as Prime Minister Mario Draghi offered to resign after a split in his government of national unity. His resignation was quickly rejected by Italian President Sergio Mattarella.

2. Celsius Network Reports $1.2 Billion Shortfall in Bankruptcy Filing Cryptocurrency lender disclosed $1.2 billion hole on its balance sheet caused by what CEO Alex Mashinsky called “bad” investments and other “unforeseen” losses. Celsius made the announcement when it filed for bankruptcy protection in the US this week after freezing customer funds in June. Premium subscribers can subscribe to our new cryptocurrency email to help you get through the crash.

3. Oil prices fell below $95 for the first time since the invasion of Ukraine Prices fell on fears looming global recession that took over commodity markets and beat demand forecasts. Both major benchmarks for crude oil lost more than $5 a barrel on Thursday, or more than 5 percent, adding to the wide collapse over the past six weeks.

4. TSMC raises earnings forecast but warns of inflation Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company raised its revenue forecast despite warnings of a cyclical downturn in the chip industry and rising inflation. The world’s largest contract chipmaker yesterday forecast revenue of between $19.8 billion and $20.6 billion in the third quarter, up 35.7% from last year.

5. Panasonic to build a $4 billion battery factory in Kansas. The new facility is expected to create 4,000 jobs. growing popularity of Tesla cars. The Japanese group, the world’s third-largest EV battery maker after CATL and LG Energy Solution, already operates a $5 billion gigafactory in Nevada with Tesla.

The next day

China economic data GDP data for the second quarter will be released, along with retail sales and industrial production data for June. Here five things to watch in the release of China’s Second Quarter Growth Estimate.

Biden heads to Saudi Arabia Joe Biden will arrive in Saudi Arabia with a dual plan to lower oil prices while continuing to punish Vladimir Putin. First, convince Riyadh to pump more oil, especially to Europe. Second, limit the price at which Russia can sell its oil.

Tory leadership televised debate There are five candidates left in the competition. will take part in their first televised debate later today, ahead of their second on Sunday. The next round of voting among deputies will take place on Monday, when one more candidate will be excluded.

American bank earnings Results are expected from Bank of New York Mellon. Citigroup and Wells Fargo. In other financial services, BlackRock is also reporting earnings today. Yesterday JPMorgan Chase and Morgan Stanley announced greater than expected decline profited in the second quarter, marking the end of the industry’s booming earnings during the pandemic era.

Join the FT on Friday, July 15 at 13:00 Moscow time for a virtual briefing for FT subscribers on what’s in store for the UK and business after Boris Johnson as rival Conservative candidates battle for his place as prime minister. Register for free.

What else do we read and watch?

‘Exponentially’ risky China leaves VC funds cash-strapped Private equity and venture capital executives in China say small and medium groups are facing biggest fundraising problems lock up capital for a decade as global investors are deterred by tech repression, a zero-coronavirus policy and the threat of Western sanctions.

Can Russia win the war? Days after his troops captured the last city in Luhansk, Vladimir Putin said his war in Ukraine “hasn’t started in earnest yet.” Analysts predict that Kyiv six months to drive out the invading force before fatigue and a prolonged military stalemate set in.

Where to Buy Char Siu in Hong Kong Char Sioux, or Chinese BBQ Pork, is a traditional dish from the Canton region that has made its way onto the menu of most restaurants in Hong Kong. Your favorite comfort food can be found just about anywhere in the city, from fast food outlets to Michelin-starred restaurants. Here are four of the best.

Web3: a new portion of the old nonsense about cryptography Web3 is the inexorable fate of the Internet, the magical fabric from which blockchain-based decentralized dreams are born and big-tech dystopian nightmares are shattered. But look below the surface and gaping holes will appear in this vision writes Jemima Kelly.

Video: what’s next with the scandalous company Credit Suisse? The Swiss lender’s story is one of high-profile scandals, from corporate espionage to cocaine smuggling, to financial troubles at one of Europe’s most important banks. New Chairman of Credit Suisse, Financial Times reporters and banking industry experts see what could be next.

Readers respond

Earlier this week, I asked if you think Elon Musk should be forced to abide by the Twitter deal. Here’s what readers said:

“Absolutely Twitter should sue and Delaware should abide by the law. . . [Elon Musk] and Trump are Twitter’s craziest rapists, and while their business model needs to change, that’s not the way to do it.” – Margit Pearson, New York

“I’m a little upset, on the one hand, I don’t want Musk to own Twitter, but on the other hand, he considers himself above the law, so he needs to be put in his place. . . – Reader JmJa

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