TCRAP_Public/990913.MBX     T R O U B L E D   C O M P A N Y   R E P O R T E R

                      A S I A   P A C I F I C

    Monday, September 13, 1999, Vol. 2, No. 177


* C H I N A  &  H O N G  K O N G *

BILLION REWARD INVESTMENT: Facing petition for winding up
CLASSIC PASSION LTD.: Facing petition for winding up
FAIRY STAR INDUSTRIAL: Facing petition for winding up
TRANSPORTATION CONSOLIDATION: Facing winding-up petition
WAI MING PRECISION MOULDING: Facing petition for winding up
WELLNAME LTD.: Facing petition for winding up

* I N D O N E S I A *

PT BANK BALI: Auditors not seeing all accounts, papers
PT BANK BALI: Audit uncovers funds irregularities

* J A P A N *

CRESVALE INT'L: FSA imposes partial suspension
DAIICHI PHARMACEUTICAL: Fined for price-fixing
EISAI CO.: Fined for price-fixing
NEC CORPORATION: Presents sweeping restucturing plan
TAKEDA CHEMICAL INDUSTRIES: Fined for price-fixing

* K O R E A *

DAEWOO GROUP: Notes payable - even under workout
DEUTSCHE BANK: FSC issues `institutional warning' to branch
KANGWON BANK: Bank officials charged with mismanagement
KOREA LIFE: FSC to deem self-rescue infeasible, take action
SAMBU FINANCE: President investigated for embezzlement
SAMSUNG MOTORS: Seeks overseas buyer for Pusan plant

* M A L A Y S I A *

ADVANCE SYNERGY FURNITURE: Gets special administrator
AUSTRAL AMALGAMATED: Gets special administrator
FABER GROUP: Appoints liquidators to wind up seven subsids.
INSTANGREEN CORPORATION: Gets special administrator
INSTANGREEN (LANDSCAPE): Gets special administrator
MEC INDUSTRIAL PARK: Gets special administrator
PENGKALEN HOLDINGS: Expects to end restructuring soon
PERUSAHAAN SADUR TIMAH: Gets special administrator
SENG HUP CORPORATION: Gets special administrator
SPJ CONSTRUCTION: Gets special administrator
SPORTMA CORPORATION: Gets special administrator
UNZA HOLDINGS: Undertaking restructuring

* P H I L I P P I N E S *

PHILIPPINE AIRLINES: EximBank to drop objections if .

* S I N G A P O R E *

L&M GROUP: Posts first-half loss
SHANGRI-LA HOTEL: Posts first-half loss
UNIPHOENIX CORP.: Voluntarily winding-up two subsidiaries

* T H A I L A N D *

MEDIA OF MEDIAS: Appoints debt-restructuring advisor
NAKORNTHON BANK: StanChart seals takeover
SAMART CORP.: Reaches rollover agmts with most creditors
THAI EKALAK SUGAR: Creditors postpone vote on rehab plan

C H I N A  &  H O N G  K O N G

BILLION REWARD INVESTMENT: Facing petition for winding up
The High Court of Hong Kong SAR has scheduled a hearing for
November 17 on the petition of Tse Mun Kei for the winding
up of Billion Reward Investment Limited. A notice of legal
appearance must be filed on or before November 16.

CLASSIC PASSION LTD.: Facing petition for winding up
The High Court of Hong Kong SAR has scheduled a hearing for
October 27 on the petition of Kwan Yau Wing trading as King
Tai Loong for the winding up of Classic Passion Limited. A
notice of legal appearance must be filed on or before
October 26.

FAIRY STAR INDUSTRIAL: Facing petition for winding up
The High Court of Hong Kong SAR has scheduled a hearing for
November 24 on the petition of Hayco Manufacturing Limited
for the winding up of Fairy Star Industrial Limited. A
notice of legal appearance must be filed on or before
November 23.

Mainland insurance regulators have taken strong action
against Hong Kong-based Jardine Insurance Brokers (JIB) for
alleged illegal broking practices.

The China Insurance Regulatory Commission (CIRC) has
revoked the licence of JIB's representative office in
Beijing and banned Wang Jiacong - its Beijing office chief
representative - from broking operations, Xinhua news
agency said late last night.  CIRC officials said the
action was part of a wider attempt to clean up the non-life
insurance sector, which has suffered from the effects of
widespread unlicensed broking activities.  JIB yesterday
declined to comment in detail on a similar report in the
China Daily.

"The CIRC has not contacted us," said managing director
Mike Methley. "We are obviously concerned about the
unconfirmed report in the Chinese media."
Efforts are being made to open talks with the CIRC to
clarify the issue.  In May, Sedgwick, a British-based unit
of Marsh & McLennan of the United States, was ordered by
the CIRC to close its mainland operations for three months
for unlicensed broking activities.   In a more low-key case
in the same month, the CIRC forced New World Infrastructure
to cease its insurance broking activities, again for
operating without a licence.

JIB - the Asian arm of Britain's largest independent quoted
insurance broker Jardine Lloyd Thompson - had been
conducting intermediary businesses in recent years through
its Hong Kong and mainland offices, Xinhua said.  It was
licensed to run insurance representative offices in Beijing
and Guangzhou, and was restricted to liaison operations, a
CIRC official said. It had yet to receive official approval
to operate intermediary operations, he said.  Mr Methley
said JIB had met CIRC requirements.

"We have been in regular dialogue for a year to ensure that
our activities meet fully with the CIRC's approval," he
said.  "And in June, we actually made a full disclosure to
the CIRC regarding our activities in China back to 1998. We
believe we have acted appropriately in these

However, Xinhua said JIB had "illegally lowered
underwriting requirements, enlarged insurance obligations
and engaged in improper re-insurance practices.  This
behaviour not only added to management risks of insurance
companies but severely disturbed the insurance market."

Industry observers said the severity of the punishment
underscored the CIRC's determination to clean up the
industry.  The fledgling nature of the mainland's insurance
industry and the CIRC's cautious approach towards opening
it up have left foreign insurers unable to tap  
opportunities for new business.  Foreign operators have
been lobbying the CIRC to speed up licensing and other

Sedgwick has been the only foreign company to receive a
broker's licence but even that was restricted to risk-
management consultancy.  Jardine Lloyd Thompson chief
executive Ken Carter expressed surprise at the CIRC's

"Until we have had contact and a meeting with the Chinese
authorities, I cannot really comment," he said.

Mr Carter plans to be in Hong Kong by tomorrow night on a
scheduled trip, by which time he hoped a meeting might be
arranged with mainland officials.  (South China Morning
Post  10-Sep-1999)

TRANSPORTATION CONSOLIDATION: Facing winding-up petition
The High Court of Hong Kong SAR has scheduled a hearing for
November 10 on the petition of Hung Sing for the winding up
of Transportation Consolidation Hong Kong Godown Ltd.  A
notice of legal appearance must be filed on or before
November 9.

WAI MING PRECISION MOULDING: Facing petition for winding up
The High Court of Hong Kong SAR has scheduled a hearing for
November 24 on the petition of Hayco Manufacturing Limited
for the winding up of Wai Ming Precision Moulding Limited.
A notice of legal appearance must be filed on or before
November 23.

WELLNAME LTD.: Facing petition for winding up
The High Court of Hong Kong SAR has scheduled a hearing for
November 17 on the petition of Leung Hoo Cheong for the
winding up of Wellname Limited. A notice of legal
appearance must be filed on or before November 16.


PT BANK BALI: Auditors not seeing all accounts, papers
Auditors investigating controversial transactions involving
Indonesia's Bank Bali were not allowed to examine personal
bank accounts of those linked to the scandal, reports said
yesterday.  They quoted central bank governor Syahril
Sabirin as saying only law enforcement officials had the
authority to examine personal accounts.

"There have been demands for documents and investigation
which is no longer categorised as a financial audit," the
Jakarta Post quoted Sabirin as saying. "There are also
demands for data and documents of office phone and cellular
phone conversations of Bank Indonesia senior officials."

He said these demands were beyond the remit of the
auditors.  The World Bank and International Monetary Fund
have warned that loans to Indonesia could be suspended if
the Bank Bali scandal is not properly investigated and
resolved. They demanded an independent audit of the central
bank as part of the probe.

Indonesia's Supreme Audit Agency and PricewaterhouseCoopers
finished an audit on Tuesday and gave the report to
parliament, but no details have been released.  Newspapers
quoted legislators as saying the report may not be released
to the public.  The IMF and World Bank have said the
investigation should be as transparent as possible.

Analysts said that if senior figures in the political and
economic establishment were indeed implicated in the
scandal, their efforts to avoid being exposed could put
Indonesia on a collision course with its multilateral
donors.  Although analysts do not expect a complete
suspension of loans, a delay in disbursement of a US$450mil
IMF loan tranche, which is due in mid-September, looks
increasingly likely.  (Reuters, Star Online  10-Sep-1999)

PT BANK BALI: Audit uncovers funds irregularities
The financial audit carried out by State Audit Board (BPK)
on Bank Indonesia in relation to the Bank Bali (BB) scandal
has found irregularities, including a fund transfer to the
"escrow account" of Bank Indonesia at BB originating from

House member of Commission VIII, Thomas Suyatno, in between
the working session of the Commission with Bank Indonesia
governor Syahril Sabirin here yesterday said, there was
evidence of funds having been transferred to the bank
from overseas. He neither disclosed the amount nor identity
of the country of transfer.

He believed the transferred funds from overseas was a
peculiarity in the BB scandal. The BPK audit result will be
made public on September 23.  (Asia Pulse  09-Sep-1999)


CRESVALE INT'L: FSA imposes partial suspension
The Financial Supervisory Agency (FSA), Japan's banking
watchdog, yesterday imposed a partial suspension on the
Tokyo operations of Cresvale International, the Hongkong-
based broker.

The penalty prevents Cresvale from selling bonds
underwritten by parent company Princeton Economics
International for six months.  The ban is the second most
serious punishment to be imposed on a foreign broker.
The FSA expelled part of Credit Suisse's operations this
year for obstructing regulators and helping Japanese
clients hide balance sheet losses.

The issue continues to cast a shadow over the US$10.3
billion (S$17.4 billion) agreed bid by HSBC Holdings,
Britain-based international banking group, for the Republic
New York banking group, whose securities arm handled
accounts for the Japanese clients.  The FSA said the
penalty had been imposed because Cresvale had not ensured
that client assets were segregated properly. The regulators
were alleged to have been alarmed by unusual declines in
some of these assets in recent years.

Cresvale said it was shocked and angered by the penalty and
said that the assets in these bond trades were managed
mostly by Republic New York Securities.  Princeton Global
Management (PGM), an offshore fund which is part of the
same group as Cresvale and handled investments for Japanese
clients, said: "It is important that investors know that we
have disputed the accuracy of certain of Republic's
statements and have requested an audit of the PGM

PGM said it had received US$2.4 billion from Japanese
clients and paid back US$2.1 billion in redemptions between
1996 and March this year.  It said speculation by the media
that it had engaged in fraudulent transactions was
completely without merit.  Republic's shares continue to
trade well below HSBC's offer price of US$72.  Investors
said the difference represented a concern that HSBC would
seek to renegotiate the takeover terms to take into account
any potential liability. (Financial Times, Straits Times  

DAIICHI PHARMACEUTICAL: Fined for price-fixing
EISAI CO.: Fined for price-fixing
TAKEDA CHEMICAL INDUSTRIES: Fined for price-fixing
Three Japanese pharmaceutical companies said Friday they
have agreed to pay the U.S. government a total of 14.8
billion yen in fines to settle an international price-
fixing cartel busted by the U.S. Justice Department.

Takeda Chemical Industries Ltd., Eisai Co. and Daiichi
Pharmaceutical Co. acknowledged having conspired to raise
and fix prices and allocate market share for certain
vitamins sold in the United States.

Three European companies -- BASF AG of Germany, F.
Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd. of Switzerland and Rhone-Poulenc SA
of France -- were reportedly involved in the cartel which a
senior U.S. Justice Department official said gave the
companies "hundreds of millions of dollars" in additional

Takeda Chemical Senior Managing Director Koichi Yanashita
told a news conference in Osaka his company agreed to pay 8
billion yen, or 72 million dollars, in fines for conspiring
to fix the price and allocate sales of vitamins B2 and C
internationally.  The fine was a record paid by a Japanese
company to the U.S. government.

"Our company is really sorry and will strive to live up to
higher standards of ethics as a corporate entity,"
Yanashita said.

Takeda President Kunio Takeda will take a 15% pay cut for
three months, while all board members and auditors will
take a 5% pay cut during the same period, he said. Eisai
and Daiichi Pharmaceutical called separate news conference
in Tokyo and said they have agreed to pay 4 billion yen and
2.8 billion yen in fines, respectively, on similar charges
relating to sales of vitamins E and B5.

All three cases were handled at the U.S. district court in
Dallas.  In Washington, Joel Klein, assistant attorney
general in charge of antitrust, said Thursday the cartel
"artificially inflated the cost to virtually every
American" of such everyday necessities as milk, bread,
orange juice and cereal, which are fortified with the
vitamins produced by the companies.

With the cartel, the companies reaped "hundreds of millions
of dollars in additional revenues," Klein said. The U.S.
Justice Department said the three companies started price
fixing in early 1991 jointly with a number of European

Takeda stopped the practice in late 1995, but Daiichi and
Eisai continued price fixing through February this year, it
said.  Eisai said all board members will take a 10% monthly
pay cut for three months and give up their winter bonuses.
Daiichi Pharmaceutical said all board members will take pay
cuts ranging from 5 to 10% for three months.  (NewsHound  

NEC CORPORATION: Presents sweeping restucturing plan
NEC Corp. has devised a corporate restructuring plan under
which its three major product divisions -- computers,
telecommunications equipment and semiconductors -- will
each be responsible for operating profitably, NEC officials
said Friday.

The plan is expected to receive final endorsement from the
NEC board later this month, and details of the plan will be
announced at that point, the officials said.  The plan also
calls for NEC to funnel greater financial and personnel
resources into Internet-related businesses.

Under the plan, NEC will shut down its money-losing
subsidiary, NEC Home Electronics, and transfer its
operations to other in-house divisions, they said. Three
affiliated defense contractors with low profitability -
including Niko Electronics Co. -- will merge to create a
new company, NEC Network Sensor, they added.

The downsizing program will likely result in an
unconsolidated extraordinary loss of 100 billion yen in
closing books for fiscal 1999 ending March 31, 2000, they
said.  NEC plans to offset the loss by selling stock
holdings with latent gains and other assets, the officials
said.  NEC is also contemplating selling its head office
building in Tokyo's Minato ward.

The plan to give the company's three major product
divisions greater autonomy is designed to enable their
managers to react quickly in the fast-changing business
environment of high-technology fields, officials said.
NEC incurred a group net loss of 157.9 billion yen in
closing books for fiscal 1998, which ended March 31 this
year.  The electronics giant earlier announced a plan to
eliminate 15,000 jobs, or 10% of the group workforce.
(NewsHound  10-Sep-1999)


DAEWOO GROUP: Notes payable - even under workout
Daewoo Group units will be declared insolvent if they fail
to honour promissory notes backed by commercial
transactions, even if they are placed under debt workout
plans, an official of the Corporate Restructuring Committee

"In principle, the debt workout plan is applicable only to
companies that are capable of honouring commercial debt
such as promissory notes backed by real commercial deals
with suppliers. If some Daewoo units fail to honour these
promissory notes or fail to repay due interest, they will
be declared insolvent even if they are placed under debt
workout plans," he said.

The debt workout plan only deferred repayment of the loan
principal by three months, the official explained.  (Star
Online  10-Sep-1999)

DEUTSCHE BANK: FSC issues `institutional warning' to branch
South Korea's financial watchdog yesterday asked German and
Singaporean bank supervision authorities to punish those
involved in a case concerning Deutsche Bank AG's Seoul
branch, which allegedly carried out irregular deals.
Korea's watchdog Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC)
yesterday slapped a punitive "institutional warning" on
Deutsche's Seoul branch over the alleged issue.

An institutional warning is the most serious step
regulators can take, short of revoking a bank's licence.
The FSC said Deutsche, the world's biggest bank, was found
to have applied "abnormal" prices when its Korean and
Singapore branches purchased local currency bonds and
derivatives from Central Banking Corp and two other Korean
finance companies.

The FSC said the artificially low prices Deutsche charged
allowed the Korean companies to reduce the amount of money
they set aside to protect against bad debt and to
exaggerate their capital adequacy ratios, a measure of
loans as a percentage of cash typically used by regulators
to gauge a bank's financial health.  Deutsche recouped the
shortfall by charging extra when selling those clients
foreign currency securities, the FSC said.

The bank applied the practice with Central Banking Corp in
September 1998.  The German bank also bought mispriced
foreign currency forward contracts, a type of derivative,
from Central Banking and two other Korean finance companies
between January and March this year.  A Deutsche Bank
spokeswoman in Singapore declined to comment. Staff in the
bank's Seoul office weren't available.

This is the first time a foreign bank with a Korean branch
has been warned by the FSC since March 1998, when Credit
Suisse First Boston Corp received a similar censure.
The FSC also asked the German bank to penalise its
employees involved in the transactions.  It said it would
take further steps against the Korean financial
institutions which dressed up their capital adequacy
standards through such transactions.

Deutsche opened its Seoul branch in 1978 and employs about
160 people.  (Bloomberg, Business Times  11-Sep-1999)

KANGWON BANK: Bank officials charged with mismanagement
Signaling a purge of bank executives responsible for non-
performing loans (NPLs), the Financial Supervisory Service
(FSS) yesterday asked the prosecution to investigate former
Kangwon Bank President Choi Jong-moon and two other
executives on suspicions of reckless lending to unqualified

The financial watchdog also reprimanded the bank's 23
former and incumbent senior officials, while censuring two
former chairmen of Hyundai International Merchant Bank
(HIMB), which merged with Kangwon in February, and 15 other
executives of the now-defunct merchant bank for sloppy
management.  The FSS action against Kangwon Bank, which is
set to merge with Cho Hung Bank, and HIMB is seen as
heralding a new catharsis of former and incumbent
executives of banks where public funds have been injected
to keep them afloat.

The watchdog has launched an intensive audit of all
commercial banks to examine their lending practices, with
particular focus being placed on nationalized banks.  The
FSS is reportedly deciding upon the level of punishment to
be meted out to former presidents of Hanil and Commercial
Banks, which merged into Hanvit Bank, for their violation
of lending rules in extending loans to Samsung Motors. It
completed the audit on Hanvit in July.

The watchdog is currently conducting probes into Korea
Exchange and Peace Banks and plans to start audits on Cho
Hung, Korea First and Seoul Banks after the Chusok holiday.
Bank executives who are reprimanded, or referred to the
prosecution for investigation, are highly likely to be
expunged when the government injects public funds to shore
up their capital base later this year or in the early part
of next year.  These banks' capital adequacy ratios are
expected to fall significantly as a result of their
exposure to the Daewoo Group. (Korea Herald  11-Sep-1999)

KOREA LIFE: FSC to deem self-rescue infeasible, take action
The Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC) plans to order
the ailing Korea Life Insurance Co. to scrap its
outstanding stock and designate it as "an insolvent
institution" next week in the run-up to its
nationalization, an FSC official said yesterday.

"Such steps will be taken early next week since Korea Life
Insurance chairman Choi Soon-young's self-rescue plan is
deemed infeasible," the official said.

Choi, now serving a five-year jail term for capital flight
and embezzlement, yesterday submitted a rationalization
plan for the troubled life insurer.  An FSC task force for
the restructuring of the life insurance industry will
review Choi's self-rescue program, but there is little
possibility that the task force will accept it, the
official said.

The financial watchdog will thus push forward in its plan
to nationalize Korea Life Insurance since further delays in
recapitalizing the insurer may increase the amount of
public funds to be injected, he added.  The regulatory
agency originally targeted around 2.5 trillion won for
Korea Life Insurance early this month to turn it around.
The FSC, however, was forced to delay its nationalization
plan in the wake of a court ruling Aug. 31 which ruled that
the government decision to recapitalize Korea Life
Insurance was illegal.

In line with the court ruling, the government allowed Choi
one week to put forward a viable rationalization plan, but
the government cannot waste any more time, the official
said.  The FSC also said that Panacom, a U.S. investment
firm seeking to acquire Korea Life Insurance, seems to have
backtracked on its plan to participate in the firm's
planned capital increase.

The U.S. investment firm was supposed to make a capital
investment of 50 billion won by purchasing Korea Life's 42
million new shares.  Korea Life Insurance's board of
directors was to meet Thursday to discuss Panacom's capital
investment, but the meeting was canceled.  Panacom has
reportedly shelved its plan because of the government's
strong objections.  (Korea Herald  11-Sep-1999)

SAMBU FINANCE: President investigated for embezzlement
The main investigation team at the Prosecutor's Office
embarked on its investigation of Sambu Finance president
Yang Jae-hyuk Friday under suspicion that Yang
misappropriated hundreds of millions of Korean won and
secreted the funds to overseas banks accounts for his own
personal use.

In addition to searching Yang's home in Seoul,
investigators have searched the main branch of Sambu in
Pusan, the Seoul offices of the firm and the offices of
sister firms Sambu Venture Capital and Hankyul Finance.
According to the prosecutor's office, the search turned up
records of investment funds, company debts and lists of
investors, which have been confiscated for further

The prosecutor's office also said that they believe Yang
had been skimming as much as W10 billion monthly from
investors' funds between 1996 and last month. Yang's
company invested W20 billion into the Korean blockbuster
sci-fi film, Yonggary, but investigators suspect that he
ended up pocketing W15 billion for himself. He is also
suspected of having diverted W30 billion from the company's
general investment funds into his personal bank accounts.

Investigation head Lee Chong-wang said that a number of
financial institutions with "Finance" in their names seem
to have inflicted much damage on the general public in
recent years, attracting investor funds without a plan on
how exactly how to invest funds once they have been
deposited. Lee added that Sambu Finance is one of the
biggest cases of such unscrupulous business practices,
adding that he suspects that the company has placed funds
in foreign accounts.  (Digital ChosunIlbo  10-Sep-1999)

SAMSUNG MOTORS: Seeks overseas buyer for Pusan plant
Minister of Finance and Economy Kang Bong-kyun said Friday
that following the resolution of Samsung Motor's debts, the
Pusan based car manufacturer will seek an international
buyer for its plant there.

In a breakfast speech sponsored by the Korea Employers
Federation at the Shilla Hotel, Kang said, "`With a
solution to the 4.3 trillion won Samsung Motors incurred in
debts on the horizon, I believe that the Pusan plant can
continue to be used as a production facility."

Kang, however, did not elaborate on which automakers are
engaged in the discussions.  Motor analysts say that
Samsung is known to be involved in discussions with Japan's
Nissan and its owner, Renault of France. In particular
Nissan is know to be studying use of the facility to
produce its mid-sized cars, utilizing Samsung's existing
distribution system to sell its autos while exporting the
surplus. Ford Motor of the United States, which came close
to forming a partnership with Samsung Motors, may also be
an interested party.

However, many see Nissan with troubles of its own, unable
to take on Samsung's W500 billion to W1 trillion in debt.
An official at Samsung said that a detailed study had been
presented to the parent company Renault and that a response
was being waited for. He continued that Samsung was still
maintaining contact with Ford, Daimler-Chrysler and

At any rate, Kang's reference signifies the end of a tug of
war between Samsung and the government over the Pusan plant
and its readiness to move on to resolve one of the most
troublesome outstanding issues in the corporate
restructuring process. The breakthrough came when Samsung's
Lee Kun-hee voiced his willingness to clear all debts
incurred by his ill-fated motor vehicle manufacturing
operations. (Digital ChosunIlbo, Korea Times  10-Sep-1999)


ADVANCE SYNERGY FURNITURE: Gets special administrator
AUSTRAL AMALGAMATED: Gets special administrator
INSTANGREEN CORPORATION: Gets special administrator
INSTANGREEN (LANDSCAPE): Gets special administrator
MEC INDUSTRIAL PARK: Gets special administrator
PERUSAHAAN SADUR TIMAH: Gets special administrator
SENG HUP CORPORATION: Gets special administrator
SPJ CONSTRUCTION: Gets special administrator
SPORTMA CORPORATION: Gets special administrator
Pengurusan Danaharta Nasional Bhd has appointed special
administrators to five publicly-listed companies and four
private limited companies from Sept 9.

The five listed companies are Instangreen Corporation Bhd,
Austral Amalgamated Bhd, Perusahaan Sadur Timah Malaysia
Bhd (Perstima), Seng Hup Corporation Bhd and Sportma
Corporation Bhd. The other companies are Advance Synergy
Furniture Sdn Bhd, MEC Industrial Park Sdn Bhd (property
holding company of the MEC Bhd group) and SPJ Construction
Sdn Bhd and Instangreen (Landscape) Sdn Bhd, both linked to
Instangreen Corp.

"With these appointments, the special administrators assume
control of the assets and affairs of the companies,"
Danaharta said in a statement late yesterday.  It said the
powers of the management and the board of the companies
were effectively suspended and only the special
administrators could deal with the assets of the companies.

The special administrators are:
* Syed Amin Aljeffri and Mohd Arif Haji Mustapah of
Aljeffri & Co for Advance Synergy Furniture;
* Lim Tian Huat and George Koshy of Arthur Andersen for
both Austral Amalgamated and MEC Industrial Park;
* Mak Kum Choon and Chu Siew Koon of Kassim Chan & Co for
Instangreen Corp, SPJ Construction and Instangreen
* Adam Primus Varghese Abdullah, Foo San Kan and Wong Lai
Wah of Ernst & Young for Perstima;
* Tan Kim Leong and David Siew Kah Toong of BDO Binder for
Seng Hup; and
* Datuk Abu Hanifah Noordin and Robert Teo Keng Tuan of
Hanifah Teo & Associates for Sportma Corp.

Danaharta said the appointment of the special
administrators was provided for under Section 24 of the
Pengurusan Danaharta Nasional Bhd Act 1998 and approved by
Danaharta's oversight committee.

"In order to preserve the assets of the companies until the
special administrators are able to complete their tasks, a
12-month moratorium will take effect from the date of
appointment and during the period no creditor may take
action against the companies," Danaharta said.

It added that the special administrators would prepare
workout proposals which must be examined by independent
advisers, whose role was to review the reasonableness of a
proposal, taking into consideration the interest of all
creditors--be it secured or unsecured--and shareholders.

"If Danaharta approves the proposal prepared by the special
administrators, the latter will call for a meeting of
secured creditors to consider and vote on the proposal," it
said.  "A majority in value of secured creditors present
and voting at the meeting must approve the proposal before
it can be implemented and relevant regulatory approvals
must also be obtained," Danaharta said.  (Star Online  10-

FABER GROUP: Appoints liquidators to wind up seven subsids.
Faber Group Bhd reports that it has appointed liquidators
to voluntarily wind up seven of its subsidiary companies.
In a statement, the company said Chua Hwee Kiang had been
appointed liquidator for Merlin Management Corp Pte Ltd and
Merlin Interhotel Reservations Systems Pte Ltd, while
Michael Joseph Monteiro and Heng Ji Keng had been appointed
liquidators of the remaining units.  (Star Online  11-Sep-

PENGKALEN HOLDINGS: Expects to end restructuring soon
Pengkalen Holdings Bhd hopes to complete its restructuring
by next month and reactivate its stockbroking business
soon.  Chairman Datuk Ibrahim Zain said his experience
throughout the restructuring exercise was that the spirit
of Malaysia Inc was still very much alive.

"The banks have been very helpful and there is a strong
desire to get companies in difficulties back on to their
feet," he said.

Pengkalen Holdings' restructuring exercise involves two
stockbroking companies--Pengkalen Securities Sdn Bhd and
Kimara Securities Sdn Bhd.  Ibrahim said ultimately, his
appointment on to the board of Astaire & Partners Ltd would
be a boost for the group.  Currently, it was still too
early to say if Pengkalen would be involved in the Astaire
business, as the London-based firm may conduct its business
through a few brokers, he said.

He said the relationship with Astaire could be the first in
a series of relationships for Pengkalen with international
broking houses.

"Pengkalen aims to be a leading broking house with the
strong backing of the Malayan United Industries group," he
said.  (Star Online  10-Sep-1999)

UNZA HOLDINGS: Undertaking restructuring
Unza Holdings Bhd is undertaking a restructuring and
rationalisation scheme involving an acquisition,
implementing a one-for-one bonus issue, issuing new shares
and applying for a transfer to the KLSE main board.

Unza is acquiring the entire equity in sister company
Berjaya Unza Holdings (BVI) Ltd (BVI) for RM75mil via a
share swap from Cosway Corporation Bhd and Air Mancur
Holdings Ltd.  Unza will buy 80% equity in BVI from Cosway
for RM60mil, and the balance 20% from Air Mancur for
RM15mil. The company will issue a total of 12.9 million new
shares at RM5.80 apiece for the acquisition.

"The exercise will immediately give Unza access to an
established regional presence and export markets to the
Middle East and Indian subcontinent," Unza said in a
statement. "It will also consolidate all Unza related
businesses (including ownership of brand names and
trademarks) under Unza."

BVI manufactures and markets a comprehensive range of
personal-care and household products similar to the
existing operations of Unza. BVI has 480 brand names and
trademarks registered in 42 jurisdictions. The brands
include Enchanteur, Eversoft, Dashing, N-Hance, Shurei, New
& Trendy and Safi.

BVI has an established marketing and distribution presence
in Singapore, Hong Kong, China and Vietnam. It has
manufacturing facilities in Dongguan (China) and Ho Chi Min
City (Vietnam).  In a separate statement, Cosway said that
after the acquisition its stake in Unza--its listed
subsidiary--would be reduced to 53.9% from 56%. Cosway has
invested RM30.64mil in BVI since 1992.

The entire BVI group is valued at RM75mil or RM522.82 per
BVI share based on the adjusted audited net tangible assets
on April 30, 1999, of RM9.97mil (US$2.62mil). As at this
date, the trade-marks in the books of BVI were valued at
approximately RM41.45mil (US$10.9mil).  Unza also has
proposed a bonus issue of 27.7 million new shares on a one-
for-one basis after the proposed acquisition of BVI by

The bonus issue was to better reflect the company's
capitalisation in relation to its enlarged operations and
assets employed, Unza said.  Furthermore, it will issue up
to 13.6 million new Unza shares at a price to be determined
later.  Of the 13.6 million shares, 10 million are for
bumiputra investors and the balance for eligible directors
and employees of the Unza group and BVI and its

"The fresh issue will ensure that the Unza group maintains
its very low level of gearing while pursuing growth plans,"
Unza said.

The proposed transfer of Unza from the second to the main
board was also in line with the company's state of growth
and maturity, it said.  The exercise will see Unza's share
capital increasing from RM14.8mil to approximately
RM69.08mil. It will also raise fresh funds of about RM29mil
to be used for investment in Vietnam, expansion of capacity
and repayment of an inter-company loan back to Cosway.

"Earnings' improvement is expected for the enlarged Unza
group in the longer term from internal factors such as
synergy and greater employee dedication, and external
factors principally from expected improvement in the
regional economies," Unza said.  (Star Online  11-Sep-1999)


PHILIPPINE AIRLINES: EximBank to drop objections if .
Recent developments on the side of US Export-Import Bank
(Eximbank) show signs of a smoother rehabilitation process
for cash-strapped Philippine Airlines (PAL).

In a letter to the Securities and Exchange Commission
(SEC), the US Eximbank said it is ready to withdraw the
pending case earlier filed before the San Francisco
bankruptcy court against the debt-laden flag carrier. The
US creditor also clarified that the most recent "objection"
filed with the commission last week was not a reiteration
of its earlier objections to the approved PAL
rehabilitation plan.

The said motion for reconsideration, US Eximbank said, was
"the best way to respond to the filing deadline for reply
papers ... we intend to withdraw the opposition ... as soon
as certain written assurances relating to the SEC process
is issued."

The US creditor -- with claims accounting for two-thirds of
PAL's $2.24-billion debt which paid for four Boeing 747-400
jumbo jets -- had been very persistent to have the SEC
reconsider and reject its earlier approval of the plan.

"The US Eximbank wanted to have further level of comfort
that things are not miscarried in the process of PAL's
rehabilitation," Perfecto Yasay, Jr., SEC chief, said in an
earlier interview. "Chairman Yasay agreed to provide (US)
Eximbank with certain written assurances relating to the
SEC process ... (he) conveyed these same assurances to the
European credit agencies in a letter," the US Eximbank

Among the "assurances" granted by the SEC, is the putting
up of an "observer" to the airline's rehabilitation. For as
long as such "level of comfort is not detrimental to the
procedure of the plan" the SEC would be willing to grant
creditors a seat as rehabilitation "observer," Mr. Yasay
said earlier.  The SEC has also agreed to certain
suggestions made by US Eximbank for improvement of the
rehabilitation plan, without having to change the plan.

Improvements made outside the plan include the reduction in
the membership of the permanent rehabilitation receiver
(PRR) from seven to three.  The commission also agreed to
US Eximbank's suggestion to grant the receiver body the
power to review and evaluate PAL operations. However, the
authority to approve the sale and disposal of assets is
still with the SEC, Mr. Yasay pointed out.   (Business
World  10-Sep-1999)


L&M GROUP: Posts first-half loss
Mainboard listed specialist engineering and construction
group L&M Group Investments stayed in the red for its half-
year ended June 30 with net losses of $472,000. This was
much smaller than the $6.6 million loss reported for the
first half of last year.

Turnover for the period fell a hefty 51 per cent to $77
million, while operating profits dropped 16 per cent to $9
million.  And in L&M's latest financial period, the group's
loss per share stood at 0.31 cents. This compares to loss
per share of 4.27 cents it reported for 1H98. Net tangible
assets dived from 53 cents to 26 cents a share. L&M blamed
the lower revenue on poorer business from its core
structural and geotechnic divisions.

The company said these divisions were hit by the continued
impact of the economic downturn on the construction
industry, difficulties in securing credit facilities,
phasing down of its equipment trading business and reduced
contributions from its Indonesian and Brunei subsidiaries.
L&M added that the timing of revenue recognition, whereby
many projects for the latest interim period did not cross
the threshold level of 40 per cent to qualify for revenue
recognition, was another factor that led to its turnover

The group said that as at July 1, it had secured projects
worth some $245 million.  On the market yesterday, L&M
shares ended the week half a cent higher at 70 cents with
305,000 shares traded. No interim dividend was declared.
(Business Times  11-Sep-1999)

SHANGRI-LA HOTEL: Posts first-half loss
Plagued by deepening losses from its associated companies,
Shangri-La Hotel plunged into the red for the half-year
ended June 30 with a $11.3 million loss.  The group had
reported a $3 million profit for the same period last year.

However, Shangri-La managed a 7 per cent rise in turnover
to $59.7 million. This was mainly due to the inclusion of
Sentosa Beach Resort, which became a subsidiary last
September.  Pre-tax operating profit tumbled 84 per cent to
$1.4 million due to the closure of the hotel's Tower Wing,
and the increase in interest costs and depreciation as a
result of its refurbishment programme.

Shangri-La said losses of associates increased from $4.8
million to $13 million due to the inclusion of a $10.8
million loss arising from an associate which wrote down the
value of its properties.  Loss per share was 6.78 cents,
compared with earnings per share of 1.83 cents last year.
Net tangible assets per share dipped five cents to $6.59.
The group declared an interim dividend rate of 2 per cent
less tax.

It also reported extraordinary items totalling $11.8
million -- comprising a substantial write-back in provision
for diminution in value of long-term investments and gain
on disposal of long-term investments. Due to this, profit
after tax and extraordinaries was $584,000 compared with a
$25 million loss last year.

Shangri-La expects hotel operations to get better in the
latter half of the year because of improving regional
economic conditions and lessened operating costs due to the
centralisation of the group's hotel operations. The return
of the hotel to full operations after renovations should
also help to pull in better results. It also expects
continued strong showing from its Shangri-La Apartments and
the Shangri-La Residences. An interim dividend of 2 per
cent was declared.  (Business Times, Straits Times  10-Sep-

UNIPHOENIX CORP.: Voluntarily winding-up two subsidiaries
Uniphoenix Corp Bhd (UCB) said it is currently taking steps
to voluntarily wind-up two of its group companies.  

In a statement, the company said its wholly own subsidiary
incorporated in Singapore, Arikara Pte Ltd, had decided to
voluntarily wind-up as it was dormant, with the group not
expanding into Singapore in the near future.  Uniphoenix-
Damansara Security Services Sdn Bhd, a joint venture
between UCB and Damansara Realty Bhd, had also opted to
wind-up voluntarily in view of bleak business prospect.

The company also announced that one of its subsidiaries,
Capri Gold Investments Ltd, a company incorporated and
registered in the British Virgin Islands, had been de-
registered by the British Virgin Islands authorities due to
non-compliance with certain filing requirements.  (Star
Online  10-Sep-1999)


MEDIA OF MEDIAS: Appoints debt-restructuring advisor
Media of Medias says it has appointed Total Consulting as
an advisor on the company's debt restructuring.
Creditors have formed a committee to consider the plan,
which calls for rescheduling, lower interest rates, and a
capital increase from a new partner.  (Bangkok Post  11-

NAKORNTHON BANK: StanChart seals takeover
Standard Chartered Bank of the UK yesterday sealed its
take-over of Nakornthon Bank for Bt12.377 billion and
unveiled its management team in a landmark deal that
increases momentum for other bank privatisations to follow.
Full integration and division of business operations
between the two merging entities will take about a year.

The US$300-million bill was wired yesterday afternoon to
the Financial Institution Development Fund, slightly
helping to stabilise the baht, which closed at Bt39.46 to
the US dollar. Starting next week, Standard Chartered will
send people of its own to run the bank, which has been
renamed Standard Chartered Nakornthon Bank Plc.

Standard Chartered Bank will have five representatives on
the nine-member board of directors of Standard Chartered
Nakornthon Bank. They are David Moir, chairman, Dru
Narwani, deputy chairman and CEO, Lee Boon Huat, Standard
Chartered Bank regional treasurer, David Proctor, regional
head of corporate banking for Southeast Asia and Indonesia,
and Michael De Noma, regional head of consumer banking.
Proctor is a former country head of Bank of America's
Bangkok Branch and a former chairman of the Foreign
Bankers' Association of Thailand.

The FIDF will keep its seats on the board of directors,
while the bank plans soon to appoint two independent
directors.  On the management team, Narwani is to become
chief executive officer; Mark Devadason will be head of
corporate banking, Dickie Fu head of consumer banking,
Thippaporn Gertphol treasurer and John Lee human-resources

"We believe Thailand has substantial growth potential. This
acquisition is a key element in our growth strategy, which
is enabling Standard Chartered to emerge stronger from the
Asian crisis," said Rana Talwar, group chief executive of
Standard Chartered Plc.

Mr Narwani said the bank will focus on small- and medium-
sized businesses and retail customers. Standard Chartered,
meanwhile, will concentrate on large corporate clients,
treasury and wholesale products. Mr Narwani said it was too
early to say when Standard Chartered's investment will pay
off, but he expressed confidence that the partnership will
help the British bank in the long term.

About two months after the official intervention in
Nakornthon Bank and an injection of Bt7 billion, the FIDF
has succeeded in privatising the bank, which was once
controlled by the Wanglee family. The deal represents hard-
won progress in financial-sector reform, the pace of which
remains slow amid the rough course of the economy.  The
FIDF will also soon also announce a privatisation deal for
Radanasin Bank, which is widely believed to have been
nearly acquired by United Overseas Bank of Singapore.

The Singapore bank was also a bidder for Nakornthon Bank
before changing its target to Radanasin Bank.  Other Thai
banks to have come under decisive foreign control are Bank
of Asia, which is controlled by ABN Amro Bank of The
Netherlands, and DBS Thai Danu Bank, which is majority-
owned by the Development Bank of Singapore.

Following the Nakornthon Bank transaction, the FIDF, which
used to hold 99 per cent in the bank, will see a dilution
of its holding to 24.97 per cent. Although the FIDF makes
an immediate profit of Bt5 billion, the difference between
its initial injection of Bt7 billion and the Bt12.37
billion paid by Standard Chartered Bank, it is obliged to
compensate Standard Chartered for a certain amount of the
losses incurred from the bad debts of the local bank.

Under this arrangement, the FIDF will provide yield
maintenance (compensation for loss of interest due to the
bad debts) and bear 85 per cent of any future losses on a
portfolio of identified loans for a period of five years.
Standard Chartered will bear the remaining 15 per cent.
This buy-out formula is similar to a structure in the
proposed sales of Radanasin Bank, Siam City Bank and
Bangkok Metropolitan Bank. Both Siam City Bank and Bangkok
Metropolitan Bank are expected to be privatised later this

Still, the deal has Standard Chartered pay a premium over
Standard Chartered Nakornthon Bank's book value in return
for outright control of Nakornthon, yield maintenance and
significant protection against latent deterioration of loan
portfolio. Standard Chartered Nakornthon Bank is saddled
with Bt36 billion in non-performing loans, about 65 per
cent of the total loan portfolio.

Narwani said it was too early to say when Standard
Chartered Nakornthon Bank could return to profitability but
it should be soon. Trading of the bank's stocks, halted
since the intervention two months ago, is also expected to
resume soon.  Standard Chartered Nakornthon will focus on
building a consumer-banking franchise using its well-
established network to reach a strong base of over 100,000
customers. There are plans to introduce many new consumer
products such as debit and credit cards as well as
mortgages, investment and personal-finance products to Thai

Nakornthon, Thailand's second-oldest bank after Siam
Commercial Bank, operates 67 branches and posted losses of
5.9 billion baht for the first half of this year.
Total assets at the end of June were 57.7 billion baht,
with loans of 52.5 billion and deposits of 50.29 billion.
Standard Chartered, while listed on the London Stock
Exchange, claims more than 60% of its profits from the
Asia-Pacific region. The bank has 26,000 staff in more than
50 countries.   (The Nation, Bangkok Post   11-Sep-1999)

SAMART CORP.: Reaches rollover agmts with most creditors
Samart Corporation Plc, a debt-ridden telecom firm, has
announced it has reached agreements with most creditors to
roll over the Bt7-billion debt burden as a major part of a
debt-restructuring plan.

A company statement said it had held a meeting with its
creditors and bond-holders on Wednesday to ask for approval
of the Bt7.2-billion debt-restructuring plan.  As a result,
87.69 per cent of the lenders under the the Corporate Debt
Restructuring Advisory Committee (CDRAC) of the Bank of
Thailand and 84.17 per cent of all creditors passed a
resolution to grant an extension of debt-payment to the
company. Almost all 30 of Samart's approved its debt
rescheduling plan and no creditors will have to take write-
downs on any of the loans.  Major creditors include Credit
Lyonnais, Bank of America, Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi,
Bangkok Bank and Thai Farmers Bank. Of the total debts,
two-thirds are in foreign currencies.

While the company declined to specify the length of the
period, a source from Samart Corp said that the company had
won seven years for the roll-over. A senior source who
asked not to be named said that Samart will start to pay
the principal in 2001 as the company has been granted a
one-year grace period by the creditors.

The amount of the principal payment will depend on the free
operating cashflow, he said. Samart will carry fixed
interest at the market rate. He declined to elaborate.
The source said Samart is preparing to announce its new
corporate plan this month, after its debt rescheduling
agreement is finished.  Samart Corp is expected to sign the
debt-restructuring agreement with the creditors on Sept 30.  

Julpas Kreusopon, vice president of Samart Corp, said that
the agreement was coming at a right time, when the company
had just finished planning a move in a new direction.
"Samart Corp will concentrate future investment on three of
its core businesses: mobile phones, paging and the
Internet. More details will be unveiled on Oct 1," he said.

Samart Corp is one of the cash-strapped telecom firms now
making a breakthrough in a long-stalled debt-restructuring
plan. Samart has not made loan payments since 1997. The
deal follows one by Total Access Communication Plc (TAC),
which has already been granted a six-year extension of the
maturity of loans worth US$537.7 million by its creditors.
TAC's creditors also agreed to extend the repayment of
short-term loans until November 2004. The rolled-over loans
account for 54 per cent of the company's outstanding loans
of $1.18 billion.

Another telecom firm which has concluded a debt-
restructuring deal is United Communication Industry Plc
(Ucom). The company has passed the most critical stage of
its struggle for survival by clearing $573 million in
debts.  Ucom's total debts consist of the equivalent of
$208 million in bank facilities, $264 million of euro-
convertible bonds and Bt3.6 billion worth of baht
debentures. The last two will be converted into equity of
$120 million, according to the debt-restructuring

Only the provincial fixed-line operator Thai Telephone and
Telecommunication (TT&T) and the metropolitan fixed-line
carrier TelecomAsia Corporation Plc (TA) have lagged behind
in the debt-clearing process under the supervision of
CDRAC.  TT&T has recently appointed Kensington Group from
New York its new financial consultant, replacing Chase
Manhattan, to study the company's debt-restructuring plan.
TT&T hired Chase Manhattan at the end of last year to work
out a Bt39-billion debt-restructuring plan of which Bt14
billion is owed to its major suppliers, Alcatel, Ericsson
and Sumitomo.

However, the process has been halted, despite many rounds
of negotiations with the creditors. To hasten the debt-
restructuring process, TT&T finally decided to place itself
under the supervision of CDRAC to manage its debt burden.
TA also has yet to finish its US$8-million debt-
rescheduling process, which it expects to complete in
October.  (The Nation, Bangkok Post  11-Sep-1999)

THAI EKALAK SUGAR: Creditors postpone vote on rehab plan
The creditors' meeting on the last mill of the Thai Ekalak
Sugar group yesterday agreed to postpone the vote to accept
the company's debt restructuring plan for another two
weeks, a decision that was widely expected.

However, sugarcane planters, who are creditors of Nakhon
Sawan Industrial Co, said if the creditor banks of the
company wanted to strike a compromise with them, they would
agree only to certain terms.  These were that the banks
accept their conditions that the company's shares must not
be written down, its management must not be replaced and
the company must not sue sugarcane planters who were
debtors of the company.

They said these conditions would also be applied to talks
on the Kaset Thai Sugar Co case. Thai Ekalak Sugar Co,
Kaset Thai Sugar Co and Nakhon Sawan Industrial Co are in
the same group with the same management team. On Tuesday,
the debt restructuring plan for Thai Ekalak Sugar Co was
turned down by the sugarcane planters.

Therefore, the creditor banks, who were the major creditors
of the group, asked for the postponement of the vote for
the plans of the remaining two mills at the meetings on
Wednesday and yesterday.  The meeting yesterday started in
the morning as about 2,200 sugarcane planters had
authorised only a few representatives to attend the

Not only opposing the proposal to write down the company's
shares to one satang each, sugarcane representatives also
strongly opposed South Sathorn Planner Co's proposal to
appoint Seri Manop (1998) Co as planner for the company.
The company would have to pay about 100,000 baht a day to
the proposed planner.  Nattapan Siriviriyakul, assistant
managing director of the company, said the group's three
sugar mills are the only sugar mills out of a total 36
mills throughout the country that have not yet got their
debts restructured.

Other mills, he said, could settle out-of-court with their
creditors and were granted very favourable terms for the
debt restructuring plan.  He said the management of the
group's three mills are ready to re-negotiate with the

"However, the postponement of the meetings might only be a
tactic of the major creditors to buy time for lobbying
among them," Mr Nattapan said.

The sugarcane representatives said all the sugarcane
planters had to return to their homes after attending the
meeting on Wednesday.  They had left their homes at 9 p.m.
on Tuesday night and arrived in Bangkok at three o' clock
in the morning.  The representatives denied that the
planters were paid by the sugar mills to attend the
meeting.  (Bangkok Post  10-Sep-1999)

S U B S C R I P T I O N  I N F O R M A T I O N

Troubled Company Reporter -- Asia Pacific is a daily
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Copyright 1999.  All rights reserved.  ISSN: 1520-9482.

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