National and world business briefs

National and world business briefs for Tuesday, Sept. 24, 2013.
Modified: September 23, 2013 at 11:26 pm •  Published: September 24, 2013
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Wipes clogging pipes

Increasingly popular bathroom wipes — pre-moistened towelettes that are often advertised as flushable — are being blamed for creating clogs and backups in the nation's sewer systems. Wastewater authorities said many wipes labeled flushable aren't quickly breaking down. That's costing some municipalities millions of dollars to unclog pipes and pumps and to replace and upgrade machinery. Manufacturers point instead to things like paper towels, feminine hygiene products and baby wipes clearly marked as nonflushable.

The Association of the Nonwoven Fabrics Industry recently specified seven tests to determine which wipes to call flushable.

VW brakes on van making

The long, strange trip of the Volkswagen van is ending. Brazil is the last place in the world still producing the iconic vehicle, or “bus” as it's known by aficionados, but VW said production will end Dec. 31. Safety regulations mandate that every vehicle in Brazil must have air bags and anti-lock braking systems starting in 2014, and the company said it cannot change production to meet the law. Although output will halt in Brazil, there should be plenty of VW vans rolling along for decades if only because there are so many. VW produced more than 10 million Volkswagen Transporter vans globally since the model was introduced 63 years ago in Germany

$8.2B movie complex set

A Chinese businessman plans to invest 50 billion yuan ($8.2 billion) in a version of Hollywood in the eastern city of Qingdao. Wang Jianlin said Sunday that Dalian Wanda Group will build a massive studio complex. The Qingdao Oriental Movie Metropolis will feature 20 studios, cinemas and a film museum. It's expected to be fully operational by 2017. Dalian Wanda operates hotels and stores and last year bought AMC cinema chain for $2.6 billion.

From wire reports