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First Round of Successful Feedin Tariff Applicants Announced

first_imgFive communities from across Nova Scotia are closer to enjoying the benefits of clean, green renewable electricity generated in their own backyards as the province announced the first approved Community Feed-In Tariff (COMFIT) projects in Digby today, Dec. 16. Colchester-Cumberland Wind Field, Watts Wind Energy, Northumberland Wind Field, the Municipality of the District of Chester and Fundy Tidal of Digby are proceeding to the next step in the process. “These applications reflect significant community ownership,” said Energy Minister Charlie Parker. “Once constructed, they will stand as testaments to the spirit of innovation and self-reliance that characterizes rural Nova Scotia, while contributing to local jobs and strengthened economies.” More than a dozen community groups submitted 88 locally based proposals for the unique, made-in-Nova Scotia initiative that encourages community participation in renewable energy projects. The applicants will try to secure financing, develop a grid impact study and complete federal and provincial environmental assessments and approvals. The 2010 Renewable Electricity Plan introduced the COMFIT concept to help provide a secure supply of clean energy at stable prices, reduce green-house gas emissions, and create jobs. The program began accepting applications two months ago. “The province is working with the remaining applicants to complete applications and build alliances among those in competition,” said Mr. Parker. “We aim to have the majority of applications processed by spring, with the next group of approvals announced early in the new year.” “It’s great to get this news,” said David Swan, manager of Turbine Development, Colchester-Cumberland Windfield. “With this approval in place, we hope to be able to begin construction of our project this summer.” Dana Morin, president of Fundy Tidal Inc., was pleased to see tidal technology get a boost. “This is a big day for tidal development in Nova Scotia and indeed Canada,” said Mr. Morin. “The Digby Gut project, along with planned activity in Grand and Petit Passage and FORCE’s work in the Minas Passage, firmly establish Nova Scotia as the place for tidal power research and development.” “This is a fabulous opportunity for our region,” said Warden Linda Gregory, Municipality of the District of Digby. “And it couldn’t have happened without the hard work and dedication of a lot of people. This government has taken a proactive approach to building a cleaner and greener energy economy, and that approach is now bearing fruit.” Town of Digby Mayor Ben Cleveland said building greener communities offers a wide range of benefits for residents, investors, developers and the environment. “It leads us on the path to healthier communities, stable energy costs and a healthier environment,” said Mayor Cleveland. “The Digby area is leading the way in green power generation with our hydro power, wind and now tidal development, thanks to industry leaders such as Fundy Tidal Inc. and the visionary approach of the province.” Municipality of the District of Chester Warden Allen Webber was pleased the area’s large-scale wind turbine got COMFIT approval. “Our project will serve to support the alternative energy goals established by the province and will provide a mechanism for our municipality to generate additional revenue over time for the benefit of our constituents,” said Warden Webber. “We look forward to working through the development and construction phases of the project over the next year.” The COMFIT application process is still open. Potential applicants are encouraged to contact the COMFIT administrator at Comfit@gov.ns.ca as early as possible to discuss projects. COMFIT provides eligible groups an established price per kilowatt hour (kWh) for projects producing electricity from renewable resources such as wind, biomass, in-stream tidal and run-of-the-river tidal developments. The feed-in tariff rates were established by the Utilities and Review Board in September. Eligible groups include municipalities, First Nations, co-operatives and not-for-profit groups. The COMFIT program will help the province reach its aggressive renewable electricity targets of 25 per cent renewable electricity by 2015 and 40 per cent by 2020. The province expects 100 megawatts to be produced through the COMFIT. For more information on the program and to apply, visit www.nsrenewables.ca .last_img read more


Minister Officially Opens Kings County Academy

first_imgStudents and families from the Kentville area are celebrating their new school in the heart of the community. Education Minister Ramona Jennex, Kings North MLA Jim Morton, and representatives from the Annapolis Valley Regional School Board joined students, teachers, parents and the schools’ communities for the official opening of Kings County Academy today, June 11. “The province is putting kids and learning first by providing the best learning environment for students to be successful,” said Ms. Jennex. “The whole community has rallied behind Kings County Academy from the very beginning, and I am pleased that this school is everything they hoped for.” Kings County Academy has been operating since September and has 620 students in Primary to Grade 8. “It’s a welcoming learning environment. The classrooms are bright, and the technology upgrades enhance learning opportunities for the students,” said Kathy Boutilier, president of the parent teacher association. “The staff at Kings County Academy worked very hard to transition these students from their old school and make them comfortable and excited to be in their new school.” Along with the gymnasium and regular classrooms, the new school has small group work rooms, tech production and innovation labs, visual arts space, multi-purpose science lab, library, seminar room, and a raised classroom that could act as a stage. The school also has features such as two assistive-care washrooms, youth health facility, student services suite and a resource and multi-sensory room.last_img read more


Afghanistan vows to crush ISIS safe havens after attack

first_imgKabul: Afghanistan’s president on Monday vowed to “eliminate” all safe havens of the Islamic State group as the country marked a subdued 100th Independence Day after a horrific wedding attack claimed by the local IS affiliate. President Ashraf Ghani’s comments came as Afghanistan mourns at least 63 people, including children, killed in the Kabul bombing at a wedding hall late Saturday night. Close to 200 others were wounded. Many outraged Afghans ask whether an approaching deal between the United States and the Taliban to end nearly 18 years of fighting America’s longest war will bring peace to long-suffering civilians. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from USThe bomber detonated his explosives in the middle of a dancing crowd, and the IS affiliate later said he had targeted a gathering of minority Shiites, whom it views as apostates deserving of death. Both the bride and groom survived, and in an emotional interview with local broadcaster TOLOnews the distraught groom, Mirwais Alani, said their lives were devastated within seconds. A sharply worded Taliban statement questioned why the US failed to identify the attackers in advance. Another Taliban statement marking the independence day said to “leave Afghanistan to the Afghans.” Also Read – Record number of 35 candidates in fray for SL Presidential pollsMore than anything in its nearly year-long negotiations with the US, the Taliban want some 20,000 US and allied forces to withdraw from the country. The US envoy in talks with the Taliban, Zalmay Khalilzad, on Sunday said the peace process should be accelerated to help Afghanistan defeat the IS affiliate. But Ghani on Monday asserted that the Taliban, whom the US now hopes will help to curb the IS affiliate’s rise, are just as much to blame. His government is openly frustrated at being sidelined from the US talks with the insurgent group, which regards the Afghan government as a US puppet. The Taliban “have created the platform for terrorists” with its own brutal assaults on schools, mosques and other public places over the years, the president said. More than 32,000 civilians in Afghanistan have been killed in the past decade, the United Nations said earlier this year. More children were killed last year 927 than in any other over the past decade by all actors, the UN said, including in operations against insurgent hideouts carried out international forces. “We will take revenge for every civilian drop of blood,” Ghani declared. “Our struggle will continue against (IS), we will take revenge and will root them out.” He urged the international community to join those efforts. He asserted that safe havens for militants are across the border in Pakistan, whose intelligence service has long been accused of supporting the Taliban. The IS affiliate’s claim of the wedding attack said it was carried out by a Pakistani fighter seeking martyrdom. Ghani called on people in Pakistan “who very much want peace” to help identify the IS safe havens there. Last month after meeting with President Donald Trump, Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan insisted he will do his best to persuade the Taliban to open negotiations with the Afghan government to resolve the war. Trump on Sunday told reporters he doesn’t want Afghanistan to be a “laboratory for terror.” He was briefed on Friday on the progress of the US-Taliban talks, of which few details have emerged. In a message marking Afghanistan’s independence and “century of resilience,” US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo called the weekend wedding bombing “an attack against humanity.” It was one of many international expressions of condemnation pouring in following the attack.last_img read more


Homicide team releases profile of suspected killer of teen in Burnaby BC

first_imgSURREY, B.C. – Homicide investigators say they want to talk to anyone who recognizes suspicious behaviour that could help identify the suspect who killed a 13-year-old girl in a “random attack” in Burnaby, B.C.Marrisa Shen’s body was found in a wooded area in Central Park near her home just hours after she was reported missing last July.A spokesman with the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team said Tuesday that its members have consulted with the RCMP’s behavioural sciences group to develop a profile of the girl’s killer.The profile suggests the attacker likely lived near the park where Shen’s body was found.Cpl. Frank Jang said the suspect may have unexpectedly moved from area after the death, uncharacteristically avoided the park, withdrew from social activities, paid close attention to media coverage of the girl’s death and changed his or her pattern of drug or alcohol use.“Perhaps you live in that area of Central Park, in and around that area, you know somebody who frequents that park and suddenly they don’t walk through that park any more. That might be suspicious. We want to talk to you,” he said.The suspect may have unexpectedly missed work or scheduled appointments as well, Jang said.There is still strong public interest in the case and Jang said significant police resources continue to be used “to tackle everything on this investigation.”Following Shen’s death, police had said they identified 90 persons of interest.Jang wouldn’t say how many people remained on that list, adding it was “fluid” and some names were crossed off while other have been added with new tips from the public.Whether the suspect left the region remains unclear, Jang said, and it’s possible the suspect moved back to the area of the crime.People in the area are cautioned to remain vigilant, but not paranoid, Jang said.“This was a random attack. I know that’s unsettling to all of us,” he said, adding that residents always need to be mindful of their personal safety.Jang said investigators have kept a close relationship with the girl’s family and would have liked to have had answers for them nine months ago.“But in homicide investigations, the way that IHIT operates, we follow the evidence. We don’t make speculations or assumptions.”The profile is the latest effort to solve the murder after the homicide team launched a website in January containing details of the investigation with all available video clips of Shen’s movements before she disappeared.The video shows the girl holding the door open for a man as she walks into a Tim Hortons just after 6 p.m. on July 18.About 90 minutes later, she throws away her garbage and walks out the door.Police had previously said Shen was last seen on the south side of Central Boulevard walking westbound and crossing McKay Avenue in Burnaby at 7:38 p.m.Her body was found in the southeast corner of the park about six hours later. Police have not said how she died.last_img read more


In death Leonard Cohens voice popping up in hit TV shows violent

first_imgMONTREAL – When it comes to getting permission to use Leonard Cohen’s music, Ubisoft’s bloody Assassin’s Creed trailer gets an enthusiastic green light, while ads, pornography and even the Montreal Symphony Orchestra don’t fare as well.Since his death in 2016, the late Canadian singer’s gravelly baritone has been popping up everywhere from highbrow Montreal art exhibits to the end credits of the hit American TV shows “Billions” and “The Americans.”None raised more eyebrows than Ubisoft, which chose to feature the title track to Cohen’s final album, “You Want it Darker,” on the trailer for its latest version of its violent game franchise, whose target audience was born decades after the singer wrote many of his greatest hits.While the process of obtaining song rights is a lengthy and complex legal process, the final approval falls to Robert Kory, Cohen’s longtime manager and the trustee of the late singer’s estate.The Los Angeles-based lawyer says he considers a variety of factors in making what he calls an “esthetic determination,” including whether the proposed arrangement suits the spirit of the song and whether it will expand the singer’s audience.“My role is to have more people encounter Leonard Cohen, because if they encounter Leonard Cohen they’re going to find to something deeper and ultimately something that will uplift them,” he said in a phone interview.Kory said he was impressed by Ubisoft’s “respectful” approach to Cohen’s music and the company’s willingness to collaborate when developing an arrangement.He also felt the trailer’s structure and violent narrative fit with the song’s dark themes.“You have the character in Assassin’s Creed faced with overwhelming darkness, which is what the song is warning us,” he said.“It’s a warning to the world: ‘I didn’t know I had permission to murder and to maim,’” he said, quoting one of the song’s lyrics.Kory said working with Ubisoft also gave the estate the opportunity to present Cohen’s music to a younger audience.“We’re going to introduce this song to a lot of teenage boys whose parents may have been listening to Leonard Cohen,” he said.“But maybe they hear the song and they’re moved by it and say, ‘wow, Leonard Cohen. Maybe I should listen to something else.’”Kory has less praise for the Montreal Symphony Orchestra’s 2017 arrangement of “You Want It Darker,” which he criticizes as too uplifting.While the orchestra was given permission to perform the song, Kory says the use of harp music was inappropriate for a song which refers to the biblical story of Abraham and Isaac.As a result, he denied the MSO full “synchronization rights” to produce and sell the arrangement.“The Lord is telling Abraham: ‘Kill your son,’ and you have harp music, angelic music. Would you approve that?” he asked.Since the singer’s death at the age of 82, his estate has received daily requests for rights of use, Kory says.The rate of approval depends on the type of use requested and the complicated back-and-forth with copyright holders.Permission to perform a straightforward cover is easy enough to get, he said, while arrangements that change the music or make use of Cohen’s vocal performance are more complicated.Pornographic films, political pieces that don’t reflect Cohen’s beliefs and most major advertisers are shot down.On the other hand, movie and TV proposals tend to be accepted because they are generally presented by people who understand the music, he said.While he sees himself as a protector of Cohen’s musical legacy, Kory says he also tries to be open and to avoid reductionism, “or anyone thinking Leonard Cohen’s work is susceptible to one interpretation and that is the correct interpretation.”Price is a factor too, although Kory insists it’s a secondary one.“We won’t do something that’s wrong for any amounts of money,” he said.While Kory sometimes brings in the singer’s son, Adam Cohen, to consult on musical issues, he says he’s developed the confidence to make decisions based on the faith Leonard Cohen always placed in him.“Leonard kept telling me in the face of my doubts, ‘trust your instincts, Robert. You have a great esthetic appreciation of what I do,’” he said.last_img read more


Save The Children Action Network Praises Obamas Call For Investing In Children

first_imgSave the Children Action Network commends President Obama for prioritizing the needs of children in his State of the Union address.This is the third consecutive year the President has pushed for greater federal investments in early childhood development during the State of the Union.The president proposed tripling the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit (CDCTC), from $1,000 to $3,000 per child, and expanding the credit to make it available to more of America’s middle class. This bold initiative would benefit 5.1 million families and increase access to child care for 3.5 million children under the age of five.“Every child deserves a strong start to life, and that includes access to high-quality child care for kids from all economic backgrounds,” said Mark Shriver, president of Save the Children Action Network. “Save the Children Action Network applauds President Obama for reinforcing his administration’s commitment to investing in kids by calling for an expansion of the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit. The President was exactly right when he said quality child care is a national economic priority and expanding access to more kids is a critical step toward securing a better future for all American children.”In addition to his proposal to expand the CDCTC, for the third straight year President Obama also called for a global effort to eradicate extreme poverty, which would save the lives of millions of children around the world. Save the Children Action Network now looks forward to the release of the President’s budget, and has called for him to commit to investments in domestic and international programs that directly improve the lives of children.Sign this petition and urge President Obama to prioritize investment in kids’ programs in his forthcoming budget proposal.Source:Save the Childrenlast_img read more


Canada Post Group reports 2017 profit up as parcel business swells

first_imgOTTAWA – The Canada Post Group of Companies reported a profit of $144 million for 2017, up from $81 million in 2016, as its parcel business grew amid the popularity of online shopping.The improved profit at the company which includes Canada Post, Purolator and SCI Group came as revenue from operations totalled nearly $8.23 billion last year, up from $7.88 billion in 2016.Canada Post has seen its parcels business grow significantly as shoppers opt for online retailers, offsetting a decline in the company’s traditional transaction mail business.The Canada Post segment earned $57 million, up from $46 million in the previous year.Parcels revenue at Canada Post increased to $2.13 billion, up from $1.74 billion, while transaction mail revenue fell to $2.91 billion compared with $3.04 billion a year earlier. Direct marketing revenue edged down to $1.12 billion compared with nearly $1.14 billion in 2016.Meanwhile, the company’s Purolator business earned $88 million in 2017, up from $48 million, while its SCI Group logistics arm earned $15 million, the same as in 2016.last_img read more


Yemen peace hangs on fragile truce as conflict far from over

first_imgDubai: Four years after Saudi Arabia led a military intervention in Yemen to back the government against rebels, the only hope for peace in a country threatened by famine hangs on a fragile truce. Despite the Saudis entering the conflict on March 26, 2015 with a coalition composed of nine countries from the Middle East and Africa, Yemen’s internationally-recognised government has failed to defeat the Huthi. The Iran-aligned rebels continue to control much of northern Yemen, including the capital Sanaa. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from USAnd the conflict — which the United Nations says has unleashed the world’s worst humanitarian crisis and pushed the country to the brink of famine — shows no sign of abating in the impoverished nation. In December, the rival sides agreed to a ceasefire in the key lifeline Red Sea port of Hodeida — just weeks after forces loyal to the government were able to enter the rebel-held city. But even if major fighting has stopped, other elements of the accord — including a prisoner swap — have failed to materialise. Also Read – Record number of 35 candidates in fray for SL Presidential polls”There was a real breakthrough in Sweden. Substantive, on the one hand, but even more so in the psychological sense,” Elizabeth Dickinson, senior analyst with the International Crisis Group think tank, said. “There have been delays, obstacles, and backtracking, but what is unchanged is that the parties still view the agreement as their best option.” Yemenis were hopeful the hard-won agreement reached in Sweden would be followed by a long-lasting peace deal, particularly as Riyadh came under intense international scrutiny following the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi inside the kingdom’s Istanbul consulate. Fighting in Hodeida, whose port serves as the country’s lifeline, has largely stopped since the ceasefire went into effect on December 18, but there have been intermittent clashes. And both the government and the Huthis have been accused of violating the truce deal, while an agreed redeployment of forces has also not yet been implemented. The Saudi-led coalition, which has won US logistical support and includes the United Arab Emirates, warned in late January it was still prepared to use “force” against the Huthis to make the rebels abide by the UN-backed truce deal. According to security analyst Aleksandar Mitreski the warring sides in Yemen are “showing no major weaknesses”. He insisted that, however, that an “alleviation of the humanitarian crisis is possible”. “Current mounting pressure on the Saudi-led coalition may open up more channels for humanitarian aid to flow. This pressure can grow if the spotlight shifts from Syria over to Yemen.” International outcry over Khashoggi’s murder and images of emaciated Yemeni children has strained Saudi Arabia’s relations with its western allies, including Washington. In March, the US Senate voted to end Washington’s military support for Riyadh-led efforts in the Yemen war. Yemen’s conflict has left around 24 million people — more than three quarters of the country’s population — now dependent on some form of aid for survival. The Yemeni government has been battling the Iran-aligned Huthi rebels since 2014, before the intervention the following year by the Saudis. An estimated 10,000 people have been killed since March 2015, when Saudi Arabia and its allies — with the logistical and political backing of the United States — unleashed air power against the Huthi rebels. But rights groups say the death toll is likely far higher. Save the Children has estimated that 85,000 Yemenis under five years old may have died of starvation. Michelle Bachelet, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, warned that children in Yemen continued to be killed and maimed at an alarming rate, despite the three-month-old truce in Hodeida. “Since the Stockholm agreement on December 13, it is estimated that eight children have been killed or injured in Yemen every day,” Bachelet told the UN Human Rights Council on Wednesday. However, while fighting across the country continues, the shaky truce deal seems the only hope for peace. “The agreement is alive so long as both sides see it as preferable to a military confrontation for Hodeida,” Dickinson said. But she warned “there are enormous obstacles and challenges along the way.”last_img read more


Womans body found in bag in Baghpat

first_imgGhaziabad: Three days after she went missing from home, the body of a 35-year-old woman was found packed in a bag in Baghpat district of Uttar Pradesh on Monday night. Cops said that the accused stabbed the woman in her throat and then dumped her body in another city. According to police, the deceased identified as Riya Sharma was living in Omnagar Colony in Mohan Nagar, Ghaziabad along with her husband Pramod Sharma. The couple also had a 15-year-old son. “The woman went missing on the evening of March 23 while she had gone to meet one of her friends. After several hours when she didn’t return home, her family went on a search but as they failed, her husband registered a missing complaint with police,” said J K Singh, Station house officer of Sahibabad police station. The officer said that the woman’s Scooty was found outside Ambay hospital in Sahibabad area where she had gone to meet her friend. “Acting upon the complaint, police began searching for the woman and recovered her Scooty from outside the hospital where she had gone to meet her friend. Police then lodged a Non- Conformance Report (NCR) on March 24 under the IPC Section of 498 (Enticing or taking away or detaining with criminal intent a married woman) against two named persons- Nitin and Rahul,” added Singh. Cops said that later the body was found in Baghpat by the regional police.last_img read more


38 killed as floods worsen in Mozambique after 2nd cyclone

first_imgPemba: Heavy rain battered northern Mozambique on Monday as residents and relief workers confronted the widespread devastation wrought by Cyclone Kenneth, the strongest cyclone to ever hit Africa, which killed 38 people and destroyed thousands of homes. Roads have been washed away, fields submerged and many buildings wrecked by the storm, which came weeks after Cyclone Idai hit the Mozambican city of Beira, 1,000 kilometres (620 miles) to the south. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince Salman ‘snubbed’ Pak PM Imran, recalled his private jet from US: ReportCyclone Kenneth made landfall late on Thursday in Cabo Delgado province, packing wind gusts of up to 220 kilometres per hour. The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) described it as the strongest cyclone to ever lash the continent, and predicted further heavy rain over the coming days. “Cyclone Kenneth made landfall at the end of the rainy season, when river levels were already high, increasing the risk of river flooding,” the UN agency said in its latest update. Also Read – Iraq military admits ‘excessive force’ used in deadly protests”Humanitarian needs in Mozambique have sky-rocketed, and the humanitarian response will need to rapidly scale-up.” According to figures provided by the Mozambique authorities to NGOs, around 200,000 people in Pemba city, the capital of Cabo Delgado, are in danger. According to a preliminary toll from the National Institute of Disaster Management (INGC), 38 people have died, 39 have been injured, more than 23,000 people are without shelter and nearly 35,000 homes have been either partly or completely destroyed. “The water came inside the house and all the way to the backyard,” said Sumala Cabila, 23, standing in his family home in Pemba’s working-class Piquite suburb which flooded on Sunday morning. As rain poured down and roads in the district became unpassable except for 4-wheel-drive vehicles, Cabila’s sister struggled to look after her one-month-old child. “If it continues to rain. we don’t know what we’ll do,” he said as water streamed of his slanted roof. In Pemba, a tourist destination, staff mopped up pools of water at a hotel and cleared tree branches out of the lobby fountain, while labourers struggled to clear out the city’s drainage system blocked by flood debris. “(We) planned to mobilise as much aid as possible to Ibo and also from there to Quissanga via Roa,” said UN OCHA official Saviano Abreu, naming two areas outside Pemba worst hit by storm damage and flooding. “It was the priority for government and humanitarian organisations, as these two areas are in urgent need. “We managed to send one flight with World Food Programme (WFP) supplies of rice and biscuits, and some non-food items. But unfortunately the weather conditions are changing too fast and threatening the operation. It’s raining again and the second flight couldn’t go.” To the north of Pemba, the town of Macomia was also badly hit, with homes and businesses destroyed, roofs torn off, trees and electric pylons uprooted. “We have grave fears for the thousands of families currently taking shelter under the wreckage of their homes. They urgently need food, water and shelter to survive the coming days,” said Nicholas Finney, head of Save the Children’s response team in Mozambique.last_img read more


Renault to Invest More than 1 Billion in Morocco

Taroudant – French vehicle manufacturer Renault has signed agreements with Morocco to invest 10 billion dirhams ($1.04 billion) and create 50,000 jobs in Morocco.Moulay Hafid Elalamy, Morocco’s Minister for Industry, was quoted by AFP as saying, “This strategic project alone will give Morocco 50,000 new jobs and combine investment of more than 10 billion Moroccan dirhams).”After signing the deal on Friday at the launching ceremony of Renault Group’s new project in Morocco, Elalamy said, on the sidelines and in the presence of King Mohamed VI, that the ecosystem and its new plants will raise Renault’s local component sourcing from 32 to 65 percent and are projected to generate 20 billion dirhams in revenues. “We have signed this agreement that is expected to transform Morocco’s automotive industry. Exports from Morocco’s motor industry generate about 50 billion dirhams per year surpassing all other sectors of the country,” he said.Renault’s head of operations for the Africa-Middle East-India region, Bernard Cambier, was said to be optimistic about the deal.According to the same source, Cambier said the agreements will “… more than double the revenue that we make in Morocco, with a target of two billion euros in a few years.”On Friday, The King chaired the signing ceremony for three agreements related to the “Renault Ecosystem” project. The first was a framework-agreement on the setting up of the Renault ecosystem. The second was related to industrial real estate and the third to executive  and vocational training specific to the automobile sector.In recent years, Morocco has managed to attract a number of large auto and aerospace investors, including Delphi, Bombardier and Eaton Corp. read more


Moroccan Port Becomes Largest in Mediterranean With Tanger Med II Extension

Rabat – Crown Prince Moulay El Hassan inaugurated on Friday, June 28,  the Tanger Med 2, an extension project that will allow Morocco’s Tangier port to surpass some of the key international ports in terms of container capacity in the Mediterranean.The Crown Prince represented King Mohammed VI during the inauguration ceremony.The port will be operational following nine years of construction work, which started in May 2010. Worth  $1.3 billion, the construction of the project was planned in two phases. Morocco launched the first phase of the project in 2010. This first phase was to establish the port’s infrastructure and was completed in 2016. While the second was to develop the port’s new docks over 1,600 linear metersThe expanded six million container capacity calculated in a twenty-foot equivalent unit to make it home for more container terminals will further extend the port.The port is expected to surpass the Mediterranean’s largest ports of Algeciras and Valencia in terms of container capacity.In just a decade, the northern city of Tangier has positioned itself as the gate of both Europe and Africa thanks to the Tanger Med Port, which was deemed a key industrial zone thanks to Morocco’s geographical position.Located on the Strait of Gibraltar, Tanger med is connected to more than 170 ports in 77 countries across the world, providing a processing capacity of 9 million containers, as well as 7 million passengers, 1 million vehicles, and 700,000 trucks.Tangier is the home of many giant firms, specialized in different fields, including the automotive sector, one of Morocco’s key pillars.Tang Med serves as an industrial hub for more than 750 companies from different sectors, including logistics, trade, and textile. It also represents a business volume of €5,5 million.Tangier med port impacts on automotive sectorThe firms’ choice to operate their plants in Tangier is no coincidence as they look forward to benefiting from the newly expanded Tangier Med port, which is a key source of trade.Created in 2011, Tanger Automotive City (TAC) serves as a free zone, focusing primarily on attracting international companies involved in manufacturing vehicle Pieces, logistics, and tertiary activities.The automotive city lay in an area of 300 hectares, offering direct access to Tanger med Port in 22 kilometers, as well as Tanger Free Zone.The automotive city provides “truck deliveries to Europe in less than 48 hours,” which makes it an easy choice for international automotive firms.“The TAC site is also linked to the development of Renault Tanger Med (less than 2 kilometers) and situated close to road which connects it to the urban centers of Tangier (14 km) and other cities in the country,” according to TAC.Read Also: Tanger Med Port’s Container Traffic Up 7% in First Half of 2018, Passenger Traffic Drops 13%Tangier med port contributes to Morocco’s aeronautics growthIn addition to the automotive sector, aeronautics is a significant player as Morocco’s Ministry of Industry predicts that the sector will have an intrinsic role in Morocco’s economy.The sector is active with more than 120 companies, generating direct annual reviews of more than $1 billion in 2015. With the expansion, Tanger Med aims to promote even faster economic growth in the sector over the next few years.The industry creates more than 11,000 direct job opportunities contributing with “8.5 % to Morocco’s total employment and is forecasted to achieve approximately 33,000 by 2020.”“The Moroccan aeronautics sector of activity starts to take huge steps forward in terms of export intensity and trade diversity, valuing and expanding trade flow with Europe, Asia, and North  & South America,” Tanger Med said on its Investment Memorandum 2018.Tangier Med Port’s forecast was backed by several international reports, which acknowledged the notable performance by both the automotive and aeronautics sectors. An Oxford report said in March 2019 that Morocco’s plans to promote economic development through investment “has witnessed success, in particular in the automotive and aeronautics sectors.”  The sectors are part of the Industrial Acceleration Plan 2014-2020.The aeronautics sector has human resources of more than 11,000 employees.Attractive performanceThe extension of the project will certainly give added value, but the port is already attracting local and international key investors with its performance.In 2018, Morocco’s Tangier Med port exported MAD 139 billion work of products, representing 50% of all Moroccan exports.In the same year, the port processed an overall tonnage of 52,240,806 tons, an increase of 2 % compared to 2017.The largest in Africa, the port surpassed South Africa’s Durban port, handling a total volume of imports and exports worth MAD 317 billion in 2018. read more


Mahinda accuses Government of betraying the country

He said all six experts wrote well reasoned analyses declaring unequivocally that no violations of the law of armed conflict had taken place in Sri Lanka.“My government wanted to table these six reports before the UNHRC but we were voted out of power in January 2015. The new government deliberately suppressed all these documents. After suppressing these written opinions of international experts which were all in Sri Lanka’s favour, the yahapalana Government accepted without a murmur, the OHCHR report on Sri Lanka which accused us of committing every war crime imaginable. Now they have through two co-sponsored resolutions in the UNHRC, agreed to implement the recommendations in that biased and tainted report. This is the extent of the outright treachery practiced by the yahapalana Government against its own armed forces and people,” he added. Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa today accused the Government of betraying the country at the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) in Geneva.He said that at the recently concluded session of the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC), the yahapalana Government pledged to implement in full the resolution they co-sponsored in October 2015 and thereby they renewed their earlier undertaking to establish a war crimes tribunal with foreign judges, prosecutors and investigators; to remove through an administrative process members of the armed forces suspected of war crimes even if there isn’t enough evidence to take them before a judicial inquiry;  to repeal the Prevention of Terrorism Act and to replace it with a law acceptable to the Western powers; and to allow the war crimes tribunal and other mechanisms set up in Sri Lanka to obtain funding from overseas. He said the most dangerous aspect of the UNHRC resolutions of 2015 and 2017 is that the Sri Lankan Government has accepted without any reservations the report of the Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights (OHCHR) of September 2015 which had accused the Sri Lankan Government of a whole range of war crimes including indiscriminate killings of non-combatants, torture, rape, illegal detention, abduction and deprivation of humanitarian assistance. “There was no compelling reason for the yahapalana Government to have accepted the OHCHR report other than their own inherent anti-national attitude. In 2010, the UN Secretary General commenced an inquiry against Sri Lanka and its report was published in April 2011. My Government resolutely refused to accept that report and today, nobody even remembers that such a document existed,” he said.Rajapaksa said that in order to meet the allegations being made against the armed forces by various interested parties, his Government commissioned six of the world’s foremost experts in the law of armed conflict, Sir Geoffrey Nice QC, Desmond de Silva QC, Rodney Dixon QC, Professor David M. Crane, Prof. Michael Newton and Maj. Gen. John Holmes to provide written opinions about the allegations and purported evidence against Sri Lanka. “Though the President and Prime Minister repeatedly say that no foreign judges will be brought to try our armed forces, the pledge given in Geneva last week is exactly the opposite,” Rajapaksa said. read more


Over 50000 Eritreans have returned from the Sudan UN refugee agency reports

The year-old operation reached this milestone last weekend, when the 91st convoy in the effort carried 960 Eritreans from the eastern Sudanese town of Kassala to Tesseney in western Eritrea, according to UNHCR spokesperson Kris Janowski. The agency hopes to help an additional 3,000 Eritreans to return home before the heavy rain season begins in late July. Meanwhile, a tripartite meeting held in Geneva late last week between the governments of Sudan, Eritrea and UNHCR agreed to begin implementing a plan of action designed to repatriate hundreds of thousands of Eritrean refugees, including those who fled their country during the decades-long war of independence, which ended in June 1991, as well as well as those who escaped the recent border conflict between Eritrea and Ethiopia. Refugee status for both groups will formally end at the end of this year. Currently, UNHCR is assisting more than 164,000 Eritrean refugees living in camps in eastern the Sudan. Hundreds of thousands more are estimated to be in Sudanese urban centres across. read more


Additional troops from India Pakistan to bolster UN peacekeeping force in DR

UN officials told the UN News Service today that each of the South Asian countries is supplying a brigade of up to 3,000 troops to the UN Organization Mission in the DRC (MONUC). They will be deployed in the Kivus, located near the troubled eastern border area. The contributions include both motorized infantry battalions and mechanized battalions that use armoured personnel carriers (APCs). India is also providing four attack helicopters, six utility helicopters and four observation helicopters for use by the mission, according to the officials. The first battalions from India started moving in by air on 20 November. India’s deployment is expected to be completed by Wednesday, while Pakistan will finish deploying in January. Originally set up five years ago, MONUC is mandated to monitor implementation of a ceasefire agreement signed in 1999 by the DRC along with Angola, Namibia, Rwanda, Uganda and Zimbabwe. Most recently, the Council asked MONUC to undertake a number of other tasks, including maintaining a presence in the “key areas of potential volatility in order to promote the re-establishment of confidence, to discourage violence, in particular by deterring the use of force to threaten the political process, and to allow UN personnel to operate freely, particularly in the eastern part of the DRC.” read more


Hit by hit Facebookcom is now bigger than Googlecom

first_imgMove over, Google… there’s a new champ in town. Facebook has just surpassed Google.com as the most visited website in the United States for 2010, slurping up an astonishing 8.93% of all site visits between January and November. Wow.Google.com, of course, is still in second at 7.19%, but it’s important to mention here that according to Hitwise’s data, this only refers to the main google.com domain. If you lump in properties like Gmail, Google Maps and so on, Google’s still probably the most visited domain on earth. In fact, if you lump all of Google’s properties together, they account for 9.85% of all site visits across the entire Internet.Either way, coming in third is Yahoo Mail with 3.52%, followed by Yahoo proper at 3.30%. YouTube comes in at fifth place at 2.65%.While Hitwise had said as early as March that Facebook was likely to take over Google as the most popular website, this makes it official. Facebook, incidentally, was also the #1 ranked search term for the decade. #2? Facebook login, proving once again that the vast majority of people see no distinction between their browser address bar and Google.com.Read more at Hitwiselast_img read more


Mourinho reveals Bailly Smalling played with injuries

first_imgManchester United manager Jose Mourinho has revealed that the team’s defensive duo of Eric Bailly and Chris Smalling both played with injuries against Arsenal.Mourinho lamented the pair were tired towards the end of the encounter. The former Chelsea boss was asked whether he felt under attack as Arsenal mounted pressure but rejected that theory.“No. Not under siege, not at all,” Mourinho said, according to Manchester Evening News.Jose Mourinho is sold on Lampard succeeding at Chelsea Tomás Pavel Ibarra Meda – September 14, 2019 Jose Mourinho wanted to give his two cents on Frank Lampard’s odds as the new Chelsea FC manager, he thinks he will succeed.There really…“I feel that is a moment where, for example, we played against the team that is at the top of their season, in the top of their moment where everything goes well for them, I think that’s clearly a team in a high against a team that has so many problems, and the top of these problems, during football matches we shoot outselves.”“Today we had a very, very good start, I think everybody was expecting a good start, 1-0 for us. We score [David de Gea’s error for Shkodran Mustafi’s opener], 1-0 for them. In the second-half, in the best moment of our team, where Arsenal was clearly trying to stop the game, get one injury here, get one injury there, they were trying to control the game and to reduce the intensity of the game, we score the second goal for them and then is again 2-1. So difficult.”“But the reality is in the last four matches we didn’t lose, bad results, yes, apart from Young Boys, the three draws were three bad results. But we did not lose. And before that we lost against Manchester City, everybody loses, not just us. And then before that we had a period where we were playing in our limits which is sometimes people don’t understand, where we play in our limits.”last_img read more


Expanding Star Vegas mass online platforms the longterm focus for Donaco

first_img Strong VIP growth sees Okada Manila GGR climb 72% in August Southeast Asian casino operator Donaco International Ltd says it is looking to reduce the contribution of VIP at its flagship Cambodian resort Star Vegas and focus instead on growing the mass market and online sectors.Speaking with Inside Asian Gaming at the inaugural Cambodia International Gaming Conference, Donaco Executive Director Ben Reichel said that although the company has recently started re-introducing junkets at Star Vegas in recent months after splitting with its former partner, of greater importance was building up the mass market by expanding its sources of visitation. Donaco ready to reset after horror year sees losses widen in FY19 on Cambodia impairment charge 70% of Macau gaming market driven by 400,000 premium players: brokerage RelatedPosts Load More “We want to build up visitation from other countries including China, Malaysia and Indonesia and we also want to focus on the online industry which is a burgeoning industry, particularly in Poipet,” Reichel said.“Historically VIP has represented about 40% of our revenue, which is all junket-based business. Our aim is to get that down to 25% by growing the mass market, by growing the slot machine base in particular and also by the online side.“We do have an agreement in place to bring in Chinese mass market players from Siam Reap because there is a lot of Chinese visitation there, it’s a very famous tourist destination and it’s a market we’ve been looking at for a while.“We think we have the right partner now to start bringing in Chinese tour groups to our property just for one night or so, so that will complement the Thai mass market side.”Reflecting the rapid explosion of online gaming operations in Cambodia’s main casino centers, including Poipet, Bavet and Sihanoukville, Donaco earlier this month also announced the launch of its new online gaming platform – described by Reichel as a “significant growth engine” for the company.“We’re not making forecasts on how much that will make but it is a very big opportunity,” he said. “It is a crowded space, there are a lot of brands out there, but one of the benefits is that Star Vegas is a very well-known brand so hopefully that will have some cut-through.”Also key to Donaco’s mass expansion plans is a return to stability in Thailand following the death of King Bhumibol Adulyadej in October 2016“That certainly had quite a severe impact for the first few months, even for up to six months a lot of our players didn’t come down and gamble,” Reichel said.“They did eventually come back but what has happened since then is that the domestic demand in Thailand has been a bit suppressed. That’s mainly because the military government has been keeping a very tight hold on social order in the country. They have been promising elections but the elections keep getting pushed back. They’re now talking about March next year.“The Thai economy is actually doing quite well but most of it is from exports and tourism. The domestic demand is still very soft and that has had an impact on our business.”last_img read more


4 accused of using fraudulent cards at Fontainebleau bar

first_imgMIAMI BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) – Four men from Maryland faced a judge, Wednesday, accused of using fraudulent credit cards at the Fontainebleau hotel.Investigators said Christian Diaz, Sampson Gyebi, Juan Alvarez and Kevin Asare tried to pay for drinks at the hotel’s bar with several different cards, all of which were declined.The bartender got suspicious and had security call police.Officers said they found multiple fraudulent cards and a fake ID.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.last_img


New ASP takes charge M Deepika in Kurnool

first_imgKurnool: M Deepika has taken the charge as Additional Superintendent of Police (ASP) of Kurnool on Tuesday. She is the first woman officer of IPS cadre posted to Kurnool in the capacity of ASP. Addressing the media, Deepika stated that she will discharge duties with utmost responsibility. She explained of using latest technology to streamline the law and order problems. Prior to Deepika, Anjaneyulu had served as the ASP. He was posted to Nandyal as Officer on Special Duty (OSD). Anjaneyulu has also taken the charge as Nandyal OSD on Tuesday. Prior to taking charge as ASP, she formally met Kurnool Range DIG Venkatarami Reddy and SP Fakkeerappa and handed over them flower bouquets.last_img