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Osaka tickets on sale

Hawaiian Airlines has started selling tickets for a new daily nonstop flight between Osaka, Japan, and Honolulu. The airline said yesterday it will begin flying to Osaka’s Kansai International Airport from Honolulu on July 12. The inaugural return flight to Hawaii will take off the following day. Hawaiian began flying to Japan in November, when it launched a route between Honolulu and Tokyo’s Haneda International Airport.

Kaiser donates $50,000 to aid Japan

Kaiser Permanente Hawaii is donating $50,000 to Japan relief efforts.

The state’s largest health maintenance organization said $25,000 will go to the Japan-America Society of Hawaii’s Aloha for Japan tsunami relief campaign, while another $25,000 will be given to the American Red Cross, Hawaii chapter, for local disaster preparedness and response.

“We extend our deepest sympathy to the people of Japan,” said Janet Liang, Kaiser’s president. "They have displayed remarkable strength, courage and dignity through this terrible tragedy and we hope our donation helps with rebuilding for the many families affected. Additionally, the events of the last few weeks are a powerful reminder of our vulnerability as an island community, so we must also be prepared.”

Within two weeks of the March 11 earthquake and tsunami, donations to the Aloha for Japan campaign exceeded $1 million.

Bank gives teaching group $50,000

Teach for America Hawaii has been awarded a $50,000 grant by the First Hawaiian Bank Foundation, the charitable arm of First Hawaiian Bank.

The nonprofit organization seeks to close the achievement gap in underperforming public schools in Hawaii. Teach for America Hawaii recruits outstanding college graduates to commit to two years to teach in Hawaii’s low-income urban and rural public schools.

First Hawaiian has contributed more than $300,000 to Teach for America Hawaii since the program’s inception in 2006.

Portugal to seek international bailout

LISBON, Portugal >> Portugal became the third debt-stressed European country to need a bailout as the prime minister announced yesterday his country will request international assistance to ease its rapidly worsening financial crisis.

Portugal has followed Greece and Ireland, other financially troubled eurozone countries, in asking for aid from Europe’s bailout reserve and the International Monetary Fund.

Analysts expect Portugal will need up to 80 billion euros ($114.4 billion).

Oil prices rise to 30-month high

Crude rose to a 30-month high yesterday as NATO escalated its air campaign over Libya, bolstering concern the conflict will spread to other energy-exporting countries in the region.

Futures climbed 0.5 percent after the North Atlantic Treaty Organization planned to fly 198 missions over Libya yesterday, after 155 on Tuesday.

Prices have advanced this year as unrest spread from Tunisia to Egypt, Libya, Yemen, Bahrain and Syria. Elections in Nigeria this month may lead to decreased output from Africa’s top crude-producing country.

Crude oil for May delivery rose 49 cents to $108.83 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, the highest settlement since Sept. 22, 2008. Prices are up 25 percent from a year ago.

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