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(MENAFN - AFP) Oil prices jumped Thursday above $50 for the first time this year as a long-lasting global supply glut shows increased signs of easing.

In a boost for countries exporting crude, including the likes of crisis-hit Venezuela, prices are once more on the rise having nosedived from above $100 a barrel two years ago to around $27 in early 2016.

Futures had ...

(MENAFN - AFP) Striking French workers disrupted oil refineries and nuclear power stations and halted planes and trains on Thursday in mounting industrial action against labour market reforms.

Union activists blocked bridges while train drivers and air traffic controllers walked off the job.

Fresh rallies were due to be held in Paris and other cities in the latest bout ...

(MENAFN - AFP) World stock markets rose Thursday on optimism over $50 oil and Greece's debt deal, while traders eyed the G7 summit's opening in Japan.

In Europe, Frankfurt, London and Paris extended Wednesday's gains that were won on the back of Greece news, bright German data, easing Brexit concerns and firmer oil prices.

"Stocks around the globe are higher, continuing ...

(MENAFN - AFP) Brent crude rose past $50 a barrel for the first time this year on Thursday, after a fall in US inventories that added to global disruptions which have put a dent in a chronic oversupply.

Prices nosedived from above $100 a barrel two years ago to around $27 in early 2016 due to a massive glut -- badly hurting producing nations but meaning lower prices at the ...

(MENAFN - AFP) Workers at nuclear power stations in France were set to go on strike Thursday, joining a growing protest movement against controversial labour market reforms that has already severely disrupted fuel supplies.

With two weeks until France hosts the Euro 2016 football championships, the country has been paralysed by a series of transport strikes and fuel shortages ...

(MENAFN - AFP) World leaders on Thursday kicked off talks dominated by the global economy and worries over China's growing clout -- and were told by Beijing to keep their noses out of its business.

Presidents and prime ministers from the Group of Seven rich nations are huddling in Japan for two days of discussions focused on how to stoke demand and encourage growth.

But ...

(MENAFN - AFP) Member states of the World Health Organization have agreed a long-awaited reform of the agency so that it responds more quickly and effectively to emergency situations.

Accused of having wasted months before declaring war on the Ebola virus in west Africa, the WHO have developed a programme to better cope with disease outbreaks and health emergencies.

"WHO ...

(MENAFN - AFP) Incoming Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte pledged Thursday to spread economic activity beyond the overpopulated capital of Manila, calling it a "dead" city overrun by shantytowns.

Duterte said he would create new jobs by setting up economic zones outside of Manila to spread the wealth beyond the sprawling metropolis of about 15 million people, and that ...

(MENAFN - AFP) French Prime Minister Manuel Valls said Thursday it might be possible to make changes to the labour reforms that have sparked protests and a wave of strikes.

While he insisted the reforms would not be withdrawn, he told BFMTV: "There could still be changes, improvements."

Speaking later to French radio, Valls accused the CGT union leading the disruption ...

(MENAFN - AFP) A multi-billion-dollar deal to break up Australian logistics giant Asciano between local and international suitors hit a hurdle Thursday after a key corporate regulator raised concerns about reduced competition at ports.

The Aus$9.05 billion (US$6.5 billion) takeover, announced in March, would see the rail, freight and ports operator's assets split between ...

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