Privatisation hailed

SYDNEY: Incoming Telstra boss Solomon Trujillo said on Sunday the $23 billion-plus privatisation of Australia’s largest telecoms company was what made him decide to take the job. The 53-year-old American, who was unveiled as the new Telstra chief executive officer last week, also said he would oppose breaking up Telstra by selling off its money-making telephone directory service Sensis. — AFP

GM unions’ protest

WASHINGTON: Labour unions are facing tough times after world number one automaker General Motors announced it is to cut 25,000 jobs and called on the unions to negotiate on some top priority issues or put the group’s very survival at risk. Chairman and chief executive Rick Wagoner, who made the announcement at GM’s annual shareholder meeting, said the overhaul will mean the closure of assembly and component plants in an effort to reach annual savings of about $2.5 billion. — AFP

Bono lauds G8

LONDON: Irish rock star and activist Bono hailed Saturday’s agreement by Group of Eight (G8) finance ministers on debt relief, although much more needs to be done to eradicate poverty in Africa. “What we have here today is a little piece of history,” the U2 frontman told Britain’s Sky News television after the G8 agreed to wipe away $33 billion of debt owed to multilateral institutions by 18 of the world’s poorest nations, most of them in Africa. — AFP