News Headlines - 20 February 2016

David Cameron sets EU membership referendum for June 23 - FT.com

David Cameron has named Thursday June 23 as the date for the historic referendum on whether Britain should leave the EU, after urging his deeply divided cabinet to support the package of reforms he secured in Brussels.

Cheap yen and airfare spark foreign tourism boom in Japan

Foreign visitors are flocking to Japan in record numbers, buoyed by a weak yen, budget airfares, relaxed visa requirements and pre-Olympics buzz.
Nearly 20 million foreigners visited Japan in 2015. That’s up nearly 50% from 2014, and more than double from a year earlier, according to the Japan National Tourism Organization.

Japan's Sharp to vote on rival takeover bids on Thursday - sources | Reuters

Sharp Corp plans to choose between rival rescue offers as soon as Thursday, as a favoured bid from Taiwan's Foxconn continues to be challenged by a Japanese state-backed investment fund, people with direct knowledge of the matter said.

Smartwatches now more popular than Swiss watches, thanks to Apple - CNET

Global shipments of smartwatches outpaced those of Swiss watches in the fourth quarter of 2015, according to figures released Thursday by market researcher Strategy Analytics. This marks the first time the wearable tech devices have overtaken their luxurious counterparts. Much of the credit goes to Apple, which the research firm says has dominated smartwatch sales since its release last April.

Umberto Eco, Italian novelist and intellectual, dies aged 84 | The Guardian

The novelist and intellectual Umberto Eco has died aged 84. Eco, who was perhaps best known for his 1980 work The Name of the Rose, was one of the world’s most revered literary names.








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