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Indian Software Company Infosys Raises Performance Outlook - 2004-07-19

India's top software maker, Infosys Technologies, has posted strong first-half results, while Singapore's economy appears to be rebounding.

Leading Indian software firm Infosys Technologies raised its forecast for the current fiscal year after revenue in the first three months of the year jumped 44 percent from a year ago to $335 million. Infosys Chief Executive Officer Nandan Nilekani says a stable pricing environment, strong outsourcing demand from countries such as the United States, and internal restructuring helped the company. "Our business model has enabled us to respond quickly to enhanced business opportunities in the market place," he says.

Infosys, a bellwether for India's booming information technology sector, added 29 new clients and employed about 2,300 people in the first quarter of this year.

Singapore's economy expanded nearly 12 percent, a record, in the second quarter from the same period last year. The growth shows the city has recovered from the damage done by Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome. The virus killed 33 people in Singapore and hammered the economy as tourists and business travelers stayed away.

China reported a 12 percent increase in foreign direct investment to $34 billion in the first six months of this year from the same period a year ago. The country's Commerce Ministry expects foreign investment in 2004 to match or exceed that of 2003.

In Thailand, car sales jumped 21 percent in the first half of this year compared with the previous year, reflecting rising consumer confidence despite higher oil prices.

The surge prompted the automobile industry to raise this year's sales forecast by 10,000 units to a record 600,000.