first_imgRajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje on Thursday launched a crop loan waiver scheme, considered the biggest sop in the run-up to this year’s Assembly election, by distributing certificates to eligible farmers at a State-level function in Banswara. The scheme, set to benefit 2.93 million farmers, will cost ₹8,000 crore to the State exchequer.The much-touted scheme ran into rough weather shortly before its implementation with the BJP government scrambling to arrange funds for the waiver. After the initial efforts to raise the money failed, the National Cooperative Development Corporation sanctioned ₹5,000 crore as loan to enable the State government to fulfil its promise made to farmers.Ms. Raje had announced one-time loan waiver up to ₹50,000 each for small and marginal farmers from their outstanding short-term cooperative debts in the 2018-19 State budget presented in the Assembly on February 12 this year. The scheme was later extended to cover all farmers.Written guaranteeThe State government has provided a written guarantee to the Apex Cooperative Bank to secure the loan, which is to be repaid to the NCDC in two instalments within 270 days. The period can be extended by 90 days, after which the penal interest will be payable.About 1,09,000 eligible farmers, whose loans worth ₹250 crore have been waived, live in Banswara district. An earlier plan to hold special camps in each of the 33 districts in the State from May 26 was shelved when the Cooperative Department’s efforts to arrange the funds did not yield any results. Even the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development did not show any inclination to give credit in view of its guidelines.Addressing the function at College Ground in Banswara, Ms. Raje said her government was the first in the State to waive farmers’ loans of ₹50,000 each. “We are working for farmers’ welfare with the resolve to increase their income twofold. We have also reduced interest rate on the loans obtained from primary land development banks from 12% to 5.5%,” she said.Ms. Raje also distributed new loan sanction letters of ₹50,000 each to some of the farmers. She announced that a Farmers’ Loan Relief Commission would be appointed shortly in the State as a permanent institution for the benefit of farmers who were unable to repay their loans. The Commission will consider the cases on merit and provide relief to agriculturists.Political benefitThe Congress has described the distribution of loan waiver certificates as the ruling BJP’s exercise to reap political benefit in the poll year. Pradesh Congress vice-president Archana Sharma said the scheme would neither benefit thousands of farmers who had obtained loans from the institutions other than the cooperative banks, nor would it provide succour to the families of over 90 farmers who had committed suicide in the last four years.last_img read more

first_imgThe statesmen of the 1980s are poor architects. Not only have they not built political societies, national or international, that inspire admiration, they have been chipping away at structures and systems erected in another era of hopeful blooms of world cooperation.The foreign ministers of seven South Asian countries who are,The statesmen of the 1980s are poor architects. Not only have they not built political societies, national or international, that inspire admiration, they have been chipping away at structures and systems erected in another era of hopeful blooms of world cooperation.The foreign ministers of seven South Asian countries who are holding their first-ever meeting in India on August 1, cannot be expected to lay the foundation of a regional geodesic dome conceived by the recently expired Buckminister Fuller. The wheels of cooperation grind but slowly in Asia, more slowly in South Asia than in its sister regions.Pre-conference reports in the press do not inspire a great deal of hope that the foreign ministers would loosen the knots of tough and hardy South Asian cleavages or fabricate a strong and solid dome of regional cooperation. Their labours, however, shall not be in vain.”I’m not an optimist or a pessimist,” Buckminister Fuller used to say. “Optimists and pessimists are unbalanced people.” The fact is that even on the ragged soil of South Asia, the hidden hands of time have unleashed pressure for regional cooperation stronger than the sturdy negatives that thrive on unresolved cleavages.Geodesic or not, some regional cooperation dome will be formally inaugurated in South Asia in the maiden days of August. That will be the beginning of history written in small print.The seed was planted more than two years ago by Ziaur Rahman, the late president of Bangladesh. Only the small nations of South Asia – Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bhutan and Maldives saw in the seed idea a lodestar in South Asia’s fractious political firmament. India and Pakistan responded initially with studied coolness.advertisementBut a contingent world economic outlook and the widening gulf between the North and the South nudged the “South Asian Seven” closer to one another. Soon a seedling sprouted of low-key regional enterprise to explore areas where the seven could pool their human and natural resources together for collective regional weal.Four sessions of foreign secretaries of the South Asian Seven spawned the idea of a meeting of foreign ministers in New Delhi to weave the threads spun by nearly a dozen official teams into a texture of regional cooperation.Nobody is expecting the foreign ministers to produce a boutique promise of South Asian cooperation. Agriculture, rural development, health, transport, telecommunications, planning, education, and sports and culture do not add up a spectacular drama.Yet these mundane, earthy issues touch the lives of the vast majority of a billion people who inhabit the seven countries. If the seven can work together earnestly in these fields, they will impart to an emerging regional cooperation system deep indigenous roots.The foreign ministers will have to determine whether, and what kind of, institutional frame is to be given to the newly born regional cooperation dome in South Asia – whether there should be a secretariat to act as a catalyst as well as a clearing house of information and expertise, the volume of money to be allotted to regional development activity, and whether, within a broad regional frame, bilateral cooperation should be encouraged. This is how ASEAN started its career some two decades ago. Today it is one of the most solvent regional platforms in the Third World.Media Play: True regionalism will take a long time to develop in South Asia. The region is torn by strategic lesions which make for deep mutual suspicion and raise a psychological resistance to initiatives from any quarter to bridge the cleavages. Differences hardened over the years don’t soften very easily, and the media plays its own role all too often in sharpening the conflicts. Two weeks before the South Asian foreign ministers’ meeting, reports started appearing in the press that could only revive the ragged image of the region’s strategic disharmony.A leading national daily like The Hindustan Times made a lead news story out of a ragtag report from its Calcutta correspondent that Bangladesh was “plotting an anti-India bloc” with Nepal and Bhutan to “woo China”.The report was cushioned on “diplomatic sources in Calcutta”! It did not occur to anyone that despite General Ershad’s recent “anti-India” noises and his internally divisive bid to Islamise the Bangladeshi culture of the republic, Dhaka has neither the resources nor the standing to create an anti-India gang of three.Neither are Nepal and Bhutan, despite certain low-level strains on their close relations with India, in a mood to gang up with anyone against Delhi, nor indeed is China in the 1980s inclined in the least to indulge in realpolitik in South Asia.advertisementBangladesh and Sri Lanka are, on the other hand, deeply interested in receiving as much Indian development assistance as they can secure, particularly Bangladesh with its trade deficit of $1.7 billion (Rs 1700 crore), its growth rate fallen behind the annual 2.6 per cent growth of the population, and its development outlay for 1982-83 trailing that of the previous year, in real terms, by as much as 16 per cent!Then came a report in The Times of India suggesting that the Foreign Minister of Nepal, Padma Bahadur Singh, will raise at the New Delhi meet King Birendra’s pet concept of Nepal as an internationally recognised zone of peace, which has received support from 32 countries including three permanent members of the UN Security Council – China, Britain and France.India under Mrs Gandhi views the Nepalese proposal with strong suspicion, as a subtle move that would chip away at India’s special relationship with Nepal and eventually erode the 1950 friendship treaty.The truth is that Mr Padma Bahadur Singh has no intention whatsoever to raise the peace zone issue with the foreign ministers of South Asia. The meeting, it is clearly understood, will devote itself entirely to regional economic cooperation, keeping its distance from strategic and political questions which can be tackled at this stage only bilaterally. Though Nepal and Bangladesh want the exploitation of river waters in Nepal to be taken up multilaterally with a major role played by the World Bank, they will not raise that issue at the New Delhi meeting.It is therefore premature at this stage to talk about a summit meeting of the South Asian Seven. Summit conclaves are events of strategic substance; they are not undertaken unless heads of government have substantial things to deliver or actual and present common security threats to counter. However, even if a South Asian summit is a far cry at this time, heads of the region’s regimes will probably assemble at the UN headquarters next month in response to Mrs Gandhi’s call for a world summit to consider some of the documents adopted at the Seventh Non-aligned Meet in New Delhi last March.While bilateral meetings between Mrs Gandhi and General Zia-ul-Haq, King Birendra and General Ershad are nearly certain, there is no indication at all that all South Asian heads of government will get together to discuss regional affairs.The foreign ministers, then, will inaugurate a dome of regional cooperation which will still be considerably short of a South Asian regional order. For that, the strategic cleavages in South Asia will have first to be resolved.Fortunately, no South Asian nation now faces an external threat. Pakistan and India are both engaged in an expensive programme of military modernisation, but as K. Subrahmaniam, director of the Institute of Strategic Studies and Analyses, pointed out recently, they are not running an arms race.Even if Pakistan can scrounge up the funds to buy 100 F-16 planes from the US during this decade – its military budget consumes nearly 30 per cent of annual revenues, while in the case of India and Bangladesh, it is roughly 20 per cent each – there is little reason for India to feel threatened because, with the modernisation programme now in hand, the Indian Air Force would still retain its superiority. Whatever threats the South Asian regimes face spring from within.advertisementMost of the region is in a state of political transition. India is caught in the throes of a protracted transition from the 35-year-old Congress system to a multi-party system the shape and content of which still defies precise definition. In Pakistan, General Zia is torn between his ambition to rule for many more years and his gnawing doubts that the military regime cannot last much longer.The ides of August will show if his “reforms” satisfy the politically conscious Pakistanis and earn him a renewed lease of regime leadership. In Bangladesh, General Ershad has promised national elections in March 1985 under pressure of army officers, but vital questions like the form of government the republic will have and whether the armed forces will have a built-in place in it, as they have in Indonesia and Turkey, are still to be decided.In short, governments in power in South Asia are not exactly in command of restless and disorderly domestic political processes, and they still find imagined threats from neighbours to be potent ammunition to shore up domestic political gain. Hence the big South Asian paradox: no nation faces a real external threat but strategic divisions remain unhealed and are deliberately played up by rulers and the mass media.A dramatic improvement in the strategic climate in South Asia must await the composition of the strategic divide between India and Pakistan. Five of the South Asian Seven may suffer from what is called the small nation syndrome; they may be quite needlessly afraid and suspicious of India. But the moment India and Pakistan wrap up a treaty of non-aggression, peace, amity and cooperation, the smaller neighbours would gravitate to the twain, and it will be a very different South Asia. The region’s dependencies on the great powers will diminish, and it will be making solid contribution to South-South cooperation, which is a major part of the non-aligned platform in the 1980s.Poor Response: Taking time off the deliberations of the South Asian Seven, the foreign secretaries of India and Pakistan will resume negotiations for a treaty. General Zia, in his recent speeches, has paid handsome compliments to Mrs Gandhi for her initiatives to improve India-Pakistan relations, and has even encouraged his people to hope that the New Delhi talks might produce, if not a treaty, at least some definite movement towards it.Reports in the Indian press, on the other hand, have cautioned against any such hope. South Block has made no serious attempt to blend into a single document the Pakistani draft of a no-war pact and the Indian draft of a treaty of friendship, peace and cooperation. There is no evidence that the Pakistan foreign office has done so either. Not that the two foreign offices lack the necessary legal and drafting skill. What they lack is political will.Western strategic analysts mistakenly view the India-Pakistan effort to normalise relations as the subcontinent’s response to the Soviet military intervention in Afghanistan. Thus, Strategic Survey 1982-83, the prestigious annual publication of the London-based International Institute of Strategic Studies, perceives the normalisation talks between India and Pakistan and India and China as reflecting the commitment of these three countries “to the stabilisation of their triangular relationship as part of a broader regional adjustment to the Soviet move into Afghanistan”.The correct position is that India and Pakistan do not command, nor apparently wish to seize, the initiative to build a broad regional framework of a South Asian dome. That initiative still lies with the two superpowers.The International Institute survey rightly says that Pakistan’s predominant foreign policy concern remains “the destructive and diplomatically stalemated war in Afghanistan”. Zia-ul-Haq’s anti-Soviet rhetorics do not exactly mesh with the more sober articulations of his Foreign Minister, Sahabzada Yakub, but create doubts that the chief martial law administrator of Pakistan is still hostage to the US position on an Afghan settlement.As long as the Afghan crisis remains unresolved, Mrs Gandhi is unlikely to give her Homeric nod to a treaty with Pakistan. Only when the Afghan question has been removed from the cold war agenda of the superpowers will the prime minister be satisfied that Americans will not ask for military bases or facilities on Pakistan territory. Until then, what goes on between Pakistan and India will not be a dialogue but two parallel Joycean monologues aimed at, but not to, one another.last_img read more

first_imgATHENS – It didn’t mean much, but a last-second three-pointer from captain and sharpshooter Vassilis Spanoulis gave Olympiakos a thrilling 68-65 win over archrival Panathinaikos on April 10 and a higher seed in Euroleague quarter-final championship play.The game, another barnburner between the old enemies, gave Olympiakos third seed in its Eurloeague group and a likely match-up against CSKA Moscow, leaving Panathinaikos probably set to face-off against Real Madrid in a best-of-five series. Olympiakos is the two-time defending European basketball champion.It’s a tough draw for both teams against perennial tough competitors, against whom they’ve had some memorable battles. But for this game it was just another war between the two dominant teams in the Greek league who rarely are challenged by other teams.It was a game of stops-and-starts and runs of 10-0, 13-2 and spurts that saw them taking turns outgunning each other and uncharacteristically nervous play and a number of careless turnovers.A distinctive feature of the game was the shutouts both teams suffered for some spells of the game, allowing their opponents to register partial scores such as 10-0, 13-2 etc.After falling behind immediately, 10-3, Panathinaikos led for most of the game and took a 37-29 halftime lead but it wasn’t comfortable on the home court of their rivals and a hostile crowd for the Greens.It was the first game against Olympiakos for coach Fragiskos Alvertis, who preferred a more offensive style of play than did his predecessor, Argyris Pedoulakis.The Greens led by as many as 12 points at the start of the third quarter (41-29), but Olympiakos came back to take the lead 46-44 behind a bombardment of three-pointers and hitting the offensive boards.Led by Loukas Mavrokefalidis, Panathinaikos responded to lead 53-46 and then 62-56 before Spanoulis ended it at the buzzer, setting off bedlam in the Olympiakos stands.,Mavrokefalidis was the top scorer of the game notching up 17 points for Panathinaikos, while Costas Sloukas and Bryant Dunston scored 12 each for Olympiakos.TweetPinShare0 Shareslast_img read more

first_imgFire heavily damaged a farm and construction equipment dealership in Alton early this (Wednesday) morning.Sioux County Sheriff’s Deputy Nate Huisinga says the call came in about 3:20 A-M at the Hawke and Company Ag:Audio Player Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.OC….UNDER CONTROL. ;08The business was closed at the time the fire broke out and no injuries were reported.Five area fire departments battled the blaze.There’s no word yet on what may have caused the fire.last_img read more

first_imgStory Highlights “Twenty per cent of women were beaten during pregnancy. The beating involved kicking or punching in the abdomen,” Dr. Longmore informed. Government Senator, Dr. Saphire Longmore, is suggesting that intervention programmes be introduced at antenatal clinics to support pregnant women who are experiencing physical abuse at the hands of their partners.“Pregnancy is a celebration life…but we also recognise that it is a significant time of stress. It is a time when relationships are strained and it is a significant point where we could intervene by having within our antenatal clinics, programmes targetting pregnant women to help them, to inform them, to encourage them to bring their partners in when they recognise that the pregnancy is not as celebrated as it should be,” she said.Dr. Longmore was making her contribution to the State of the Nation Debate in the Senate on Friday (November 9).She noted that such interventions are needed, given the prevalence of abuse among pregnant women. She cited the country’s first ever Women’s Health Survey which revealed that pregnant were significantly more likely to experience physical abuse by their male partner (27.4 per cent) than women who had never been pregnant (11.3 per cent).“Twenty per cent of women were beaten during pregnancy. The beating involved kicking or punching in the abdomen,” Dr. Longmore informed.The Senator lamented that persons are now too aggressive in how they communicate, which leads to unnecessary conflicts.“Too many intimate, interpersonal, family and community relationships suffer with grave consequences on the basis of sometimes very simple misunderstandings. We need to be more tender and caring to each other in how were communicate, in how we look out for each other,” she said.She suggested that instead of getting into heated altercations, persons should just  step away from the confrontation. “Pregnancy is a celebration life…but we also recognise that it is a significant time of stress. It is a time when relationships are strained and it is a significant point where we could intervene by having within our antenatal clinics, programmes targetting pregnant women to help them, to inform them, to encourage them to bring their partners in when they recognise that the pregnancy is not as celebrated as it should be,” she said.  “Too many intimate, interpersonal, family and community relationships suffer with grave consequences on the basis of sometimes very simple misunderstandings. We need to be more tender and caring to each other in how were communicate, in how we look out for each other,” she said.last_img read more

first_imgThe province is investing $23,000 in three projects that will help Nova Scotians adapt to climate change. The projects are receiving support from the province’s Climate Change Adaptation Fund, which helps research local impacts and identify solutions. “Nova Scotians have some very impressive and inventive ideas to contribute,” said Sterling Belliveau, Minister of Environment. “These projects will help to protect our environment and communities from the impacts of climate change while showcasing local solutions.” A joint report from the National Roundtable on the Environment and the Economy and the Royal Canadian Geographical Society, released Oct. 5, shows how climate change could affect the country’s landscape. The report reinforces the need for local action on climate change. Halifax Regional Municipality will use a $5,000 grant to prepare for climate change emergencies by identifying and mapping community risks in rural areas. “The project will allow us to strengthen community preparedness for potential Climate Change related impacts” says Kathy Cooper-MacDonald, environmental performance officer with HRM. “We want people to have a good understanding of potential threats, impacts and ways to protect and prepared themselves for weather related emergencies.” Ecology Action Centre received $10,000 to do a needs assessment on communicating climate change adaptation to cottage owners along the Northumberland Strait. “People who live along the coast see that change is happening and are already thinking about how to adapt,” said Jennifer Graham, coastal co-ordinator at the Ecology Action Centre. “This research project will help develop effective ways to communicate important information about climate change and shoreline change to coastal property owners.” Applied Geomatics Research Group at Nova Scotia Community College is receiving $8,000 to train regional emergency management officials to document and mark high-water locations after flood events, and build a database and for future reference and planning. “Our present storm surges and high water levels have a lot to tell us about the expected future impacts of climate change,” said Tim Webster with the Applied Geomatics Research Group. “Working with regional emergency planners, we will identify flood risk areas and monitor high water storm surge events to better prepare for future sea-level rise conditions under a changing climate.” The CCAF was launched in July with projects to be completed by March 31. The grants are in addition to the $612,000 the province is investing in adaptation over the next three years through the Atlantic Climate Adaption Solutions Project. To learn more about what the province is doing to address climate change visit read more

first_imgREGINA – A piece of Canadian football history has gone out with a bang in Regina.The last standing section of the Mosaic Stadium, home to the Saskatchewan Roughriders for 80 years, was demolished Friday as hundreds of football fans dressed in the team’s green jerseys watched on in a mix of nostalgia and sorrow.The area is being converted to a mixed-use development and the city paid just over $2 million for the facility’s deconstruction.Many fans gathered behind a security fence, while others perched on nearby rooftops to watch the westside grandstands of the stadium topple.Mosaic Stadium at Taylor Field was home to the Roughriders from 1936-2016.The team opened the 2017 season in a new $278-million facility, also named Mosaic Stadium, right next door.It has a capacity of 33,000 but can be expanded to 40,000 for major events.“It is sad, a lot of memories,” Elaine Kivisto said as she watched the last bit of the stadium come down.“I’ve been a season ticket holder for 37 years, our sons played high school football here and so we came to all those games, so it is bittersweet.”(CTV Regina, CKRM)last_img read more

first_imgLauren Krugel, The Canadian Press CALGARY — The Crown says a second-degree murder charge against a Calgary senior accused in his wife’s death has been withdrawn following his death.Fred van Zuiden was found unfit to stand trial in the death of his 80-year-old wife Audrey, whose body was found in their home in October 2016.Court heard he had dementia and therefore could not understand the charge against him or even recognize his lawyer.Van Zuiden was 88 when he died at a secure care home in Camrose, Alta., on Jan. 6, but loved ones had hoped he would pass away without the murder charge attached to his name.Crown prosecutor Ken McCaffrey says he withdrew the charge as an administration step.He says he would have done so sooner had there been guarantees that van Zuiden posed no risk.“This is a very heartbreaking case and I certainly would have stayed the charge or withdrew the charge earlier if I had had those guarantees,” McCaffrey said Monday.“But from my perspective, the primary focus is the protection of the public.”McCaffrey said he hasn’t dealt with a case like this in his 26 years as a criminal lawyer and other prosecutors from across Canada have called asking about it.The van Zuidens were married nearly six decades. They ran a sailboat business together and had no children. Close friends have described them as soulmates and have said he never would have intentionally hurt his wife.“The family has now come to find closure during these difficult few years,” van Zuiden’s nephew, Robert Vlessing, said in a statement.Van Zuiden, who was born to a Jewish family in Holland, chronicled his flight from the Nazis during the Second World War in his memoir: “Call Me Mom: A Dutch Boy’s WWII Survival Story.”“We will remember Fred for the full and accomplished life he had with Audrey and as the man of passion, bravery, honour, and respect that he truly was,” said his godson, Vince Walker.  last_img read more

The UNHRC will meet for its annual session in Geneva in March and Attanayake says the recent actions of the President and his brothers will allow the UNHRC to once again point fingers at the country. In an spacial statement on Bandaranayake’s sacking from office, the UNP said that her removal was also an act of treachery and betrayal to the nation. The opposition United National Party (UNP) says the government has virtually set the path for Sri Lanka to be censured at the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) in Geneva this year.UNP General Secretary Tissa Attanayake said that President Mahinda Rajapaksa had violated the constitution by removing Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake. He also noted that by giving room for such action to take place the government  is in a way allowing the Council to also then look back at past allegations raised against the country including the security forces.The UNP also criticized Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa for informing the President that parliament had called for the removal of the Chief justice when the entire process was illegal. (Colombo Gazette) read more

Families and businesses will benefit directly from the project, reducing the distance people need to travel to reach essential services such as healthcare and education, as well as bringing rural communities closer together by cutting transport costs. This project has been designed to accelerate Sri Lanka’s development through improvements in its rural transport infrastructure. The financing of these 250 bridges follows the provision of support in 2011 for 210 bridges and in 2014 for 618 bridges.The Sri Lankan Government estimates that collectively the bridges will benefit more than 100,000 families as well as businesses in the country. “Over the course of the last 100 years UK Export Finance has led the way in delivering innovative finance to help British companies achieve international success across a wide range of industries and countries. I am delighted that as UKEF marks its centenary year, it continues not only to support the UK’s exporters but also those transformational projects that will have a direct impact on the lives of citizens across the globe,” he said. The company has designed and built a number of iconic landmarks including the Sydney Harbour Bridge and Tyne Bridge.Cleveland Bridge designs its modular bridges in the UK and they are easily assembled to meet the specific needs of each project.International Trade Secretary Dr Liam Fox said that Cleveland Bridge demonstrates the value British design and engineering can bring to the world stage. Don Underwood, Commercial Consultant, Cleveland Bridge said that they are delighted UKEF has chosen to support the project, and Cleveland Bridge’s continued growth. (Colombo Gazette) Britain is to fund the construction of 250 bridges in rural Sri Lanka, the British Foreign Office said.International Trade Secretary Liam Fox announced that UK Export Finance (UKEF) will provide £49 million worth of support for Darlington-based firm Cleveland Bridge to construct 250 bridges for rural Sri Lankan communities. read more

Delegates will conclude a weeklong meeting tomorrow on the Rotterdam Convention on the Prior Informed Consent Procedure (PIC), which contributes to reducing the risks associated with the use of chemicals, particularly in developing countries, and limits the introduction of hazardous chemicals and pesticides into countries that cannot safely manage them, according to a joint statement released by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).Some 70,000 different chemicals are available on the market, and 1,500 new ones are introduced every year. “This poses a major challenge to many governments who must attempt to monitor and manage these potentially dangerous substances,” the statement said. “Many pesticides that have been banned or whose use has been severely restricted in industrialized countries are still marketed and used in developing countries.”Adopted in 1998 under the auspices of UNEP and FAO, the Rotterdam Convention uses the PIC procedure to help governments decide whether to accept or refuse the imports of certain hazardous chemicals. Countries that export such chemicals will have to respect the decisions of importing parties.David Harcharik, FAO Deputy Director-General, stressed that “global agreements such as the Rotterdam Convention serve to provide a level of control and can help to mitigate the negative effects of globalization.” He also urged countries to work towards ratification of the Rotterdam Convention in time for the World Summit on Sustainable Development in September 2002.Pending the entry into force of the Rotterdam Convention, governments have agreed to apply the PIC procedure on a voluntary basis. The processes developed are operational, with three additional chemicals and two severely hazardous pesticide formulations identified as candidates for inclusion in the interim PIC procedure.The Rotterdam Convention was adopted and signed by Ministers and senior officials on 11 September 1998. It has received 73 signatures and has thus far been ratified by 16 governments; it will enter into force 90 days after the 50th ratification. read more

Edmonton police department tries to clarify link between rising crime, oil price by The Canadian Press Posted Oct 5, 2015 9:54 pm MDT Last Updated Oct 6, 2015 at 7:00 am MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email EDMONTON – Edmonton’s police force tried to clarify Monday comments its chief made last week that out-of-work oilpatch workers could be to blame for the city’s recent rise in crime.On the weekend, the Edmonton Police Service released tables and charts that it said shows monthly crime statistics in Edmonton climbing over the past 12 months as oil prices dropped to record lows.On Monday, deputy chief Brian Simpson spoke to reporters on the steps of police headquarters.“It’s not linked to oil prices,” he said. “It’s linked to the change in the economy that we experience in Alberta. This has been an Alberta experience for a long time.”The department had said the data was provided in response to a request from Melissa Blake, the mayor of the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo, that Chief Rod Knecht back up his claim that low oil prices and crime were connected.“The price of oil is not the only factor behind a higher crime rate — population growth in the city and the local unemployment rate are also contributing factors,” the news release on Sunday said.“However, as the statistics show, the connection between the price of oil and crime rates in the city is clear.”Knecht said last week a lot of people are coming back to Edmonton from Fort McMurray and Cold Lake and are sitting around in Edmonton waiting for the price of oil to go back up so they can go back to work.Blake called the comments “unjust.”Simpson said the shadow population that comes to Edmonton comes from all over northern Canada, and is not directly related to a downturn in the oilpatch.“It’s mainly property crimes are the biggest impact that we’re seeing across the board,” Simpson said. “I think we’re up about 18-plus per cent at this point and the other thing is violent crimes. We’re seeing an increase as well.“A lot of those violent crimes in the policing environment relate back to drug usage in terms of our experience.”Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson also weighed in on the debate last week, saying the downturn in the economy means Edmonton ends up policing “northern Alberta’s problem children.”Blake said last week that she would welcome an apology from Knecht and Iveson, saying it seemed like her community was “an easy target.”The EPS will be asking city council for 80 additional officers during budget deliberations in November.(CHED, CTV Edmonton, The Canadian Press) read more

by Allison Jones, The Canadian Press Posted Apr 13, 2017 10:57 am MDT Last Updated Apr 13, 2017 at 3:00 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email TORONTO – Ontario’s first balanced budget since the recession is set to be delivered April 27 and will include increased health funding, innovation investments, a new tax credit for seniors and measures to cool the housing market in the Greater Toronto Area.There will be no new taxes on families, Finance Minister Charles Sousa said.“Eliminating the deficit allows us to redouble our efforts to make lives a little more affordable,” he said Thursday in a speech to the Empire Club of Canada.Sousa didn’t reveal how his budget will tackle housing affordability, but said he’s concerned about speculators “playing the market” and therefore limiting supply.“They’re crowding out families who are trying to put down roots,” he said.Sousa is set to meet with federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau and Toronto Mayor John Tory on Tuesday to discuss housing in the region.The budget will include a public transit tax credit for seniors 65 years and older. That would come after the federal government recently announced it was eliminating a 15-per-cent tax credit for commuters who buy a transit pass because it wasn’t encouraging ridership as hoped.Sousa said he hopes Ontario’s tax credit will encourage more seniors to use transit, but gave only anecdotal evidence when asked why he thought that would work.“We’re just trying to provide some more affordability measures, make life a little bit easier for seniors,” he said. The credit “will make it more affordable for (seniors) to go to the gym, the library, or to take their grandkids to a concert.”Sousa highlighted in his speech investments the government has made in the innovation sector, saying more of that can be expected in the budget.“We must embrace new, potentially disruptive technologies,” he said.He also signalled that more health spending is coming, saying that sector will get “a major booster shot.”Even though Ontario’s Liberal government has managed to knock down a deficit that was at one point more than $20 billion, the province’s debt continues to grow.It has swelled to more than $300 billion and in last year’s budget interest on that debt was more than $11 billion and was growing twice as quickly as any program spending area.When asked if he has a plan to start paying down the debt, Sousa said, “we’re addressing debt always.”“We will continue to look at ways to manage our debt-to-GDP (ratio) in a way that starts to taper it down even further,” he said.Ontario’s net-debt-to-GDP ratio is about 40 per cent.The Progressive Conservatives have accused the government of artificially balancing the budget, through the use of one-time money from asset sales and the use of a reserve fund. Ontario to table first balanced budget since the recession on April 27 read more

first_imgAlready the world’s largest producer of diamonds by value, the opening of this new technology driven sorting facility establishes Botswana as the world leader in the sorting and valuation of rough diamonds.  The development and construction of the building was funded by De Beers, and will serve as the home of the Diamond Trading Co Botswana (DTC Botswana), a unique 50:50 joint venture between the Government of Botswana and De Beers.  Beneficiation, a strategy shared by the Government De Beers, ensures that a portion of Botswana’s most important natural resource stays in the country longer, so that value can be added through local companies and local expertise.  This strategy of turning natural resources into shared national wealth is anticipated to stimulate the development of a new industry in Botswana and create approximately 3,000 new jobs in the country.  The jobs, primarily in diamond cutting, polishing, sales and marketing, will account for a 30% increase in diamond industry jobs in Botswana and a 10% increase in the country’s total number of manufacturing jobs.  In addition, job creation in secondary business sectors such as banking, security and Information Technology will support Botswana’s economic vision to generate jobs and drive maximum value from the country’s diamond resources.DTC Botswana will sort and value all rough diamonds produced by Debswana (a 50/50 joint venture between the Government and De Beers to mine the country’s diamonds) and, for the first time in Botswana, perform local sales and marketing activities for rough diamonds. Through its Diamond Academy in Botswana, the DTC is ensuring the skills transfer, training and development of local employees. DTC Botswana will be the primary vehicle for creating a sustainable and profitable downstream industry in Botswana that will:Provide maximum long term value from diamonds to the country through world class sorting, valuing,  selling and marketing practices in BotswanaDevelop new employment opportunities in BotswanaEnsure that new skills and capabilities are created amongst Botswana’s citizensBe a catalyst for other businesses to invest in BotswanaIn addition, the vast majority of De Beers’ global production will be aggregated in Botswana by DTC International by 2009.Speaking at the opening ceremony, President Festus Mogae said “It will provide Government with another significant revenue stream, to finance further development. It will also raise our nation’s global profile by becoming a benchmark brand of local excellence.”Nicky Oppenheimer. speaking about the creation of DTC Botswana, noted that the opening of the building was a true celebration, and an important milestone in the enduring partnership between De Beers and the people of Botswana. “The unique contribution that diamonds have made in countries like Botswana gives us cause to reflect on what lessons might be drawn from this success, and whether these might be deployed effectively elsewhere on the continent.  We have, for example, learned the value of building local capacity through employing local people and ensuring local management of our operations; of supporting local businesses through preferential procurement and the provision of support through enterprise funds; of engaged support for initiatives that promote good governance and transparency and we have learned the value of industry leadership in driving an ethical business that underwrites consumer confidence in diamonds. Above all we have learned that building strong mutually beneficial partnerships wherever we work creates a shared responsibility for success.”Botswana produces 22% of world output of gem diamonds by value. Revenue from diamonds represents 33% of the country’s GDP. The wealth generated from diamond revenues has been used to build and develop healthcare, education and transport.  In the four decades since diamonds were discovered in 1966, Botswana has transformed itself from among the poorest countries in Africa to one of the most democratic and wealthiest on the continent, with one of the world’s highest economic growth rates (4.7% annually in 2006-07). This dramatic and rapid development of Botswana’s upstream and now downstream industry, and the prudent mix of stability, good governance and effective management of its diamond resource, provides a much wider commentary on what business’ role should be in African development.last_img read more

first_imgSpeaking in Monaco at the Samsung EU Forum today, company president BK Yoon stated that Samsung made $184 billion in sales in 2012 and that it dumps $9 billion into research and development every year. If those figures weren’t enough to establish Samsung as a consumer-based technological forced to be reckoned with, Yoon mentioned that three Samsung televisions are sold every second, which is the verbal equivalent of dropping the mic and walking off stage if we ever heard one.That’s something of a blistering sales pace, and without Yoon providing further clarification on the matter, we decided to do a bit of math to figure out — if true — exactly how many TVs that is.Three TVs sold per second leads to 180 units per minute and 10,800 per hour. If 10,800 Samsung televisions are being sold per hour, then 259,200 units are being sold per day, which leads to 94,608,000 TVs sold per year.At that sustained sales rate, with a world population just a bit under seven billion people (according to the World Bank), Samsung could fit each individual person in the world with their own television in just under 74 years if the population suddenly stopped growing starting this year.However, since the population of the world isn’t projected to stop growing, it is expected to be around 10 billion 74 years from now, which leaves around 3 billion people without a television, which would take Samsung’s sales another 31 years and into the year 2118.In 2100, the world’s population is projected to only have grown around 100,000 over the 10 billion in 2087. So with a rough estimate, it is safe to say that it’ll take Samsung around 105 or so years to give everyone in the world one TV if roughly adjusted for the world’s estimated growing population.We don’t really know what other television manufacturers are going to be doing during that time.last_img read more

first_imgKevin De Bruyne is not certain to reclaim his starting place when Manchester City host Chelsea this weekend.It’s believed the move is a precautionary measure to reduce the workload on the Belgian star after suffering a pair of medial knee ligament injuries.While some reports claim it could be due to tactical reasons citing the assured late cameo against Everton that set up Gabriel Jesus’ to wrap up the win.Man City’s De Bruyne not guaranteed Chelsea start – Guardiola— The Star (@staronline) February 8, 2019And he might have to be content with starting on the bench once more against Maurizio Sarri’s men.“Maybe, yeah, it’s quite possible, of course, it’s possible,” Guardiola told a news conference via FourFourTwo. “Every player knows, maybe it is quite possible to play him, maybe it is quite possible not to.“In the end, we judge the players for absolutely who we believe they are, but there are top forms and there are moments when you are not in better condition.WolverhamptonMatch Preview: Wolverhampton vs Chelsea Boro Tanchev – September 13, 2019 Wolverhampton will host Chelsea at the Molineux Stadium in one of the most interesting Premier League games this weekend.“There are moments when the other team-mates are in better conditions than them. In football what you have done is the past, you have to do it again.”De Bruyne who was City’s most outstanding performer last season is been carefully managed by Guardiola as they continue their chase for trophies on four fronts.“We try to control the players. He played the previous two games, I preferred at Everton [for him to play a] few minutes,” he explained.“What I want from Kevin is to play the last five minutes he played as much as possible. He went out for five minutes, plus the extra time, and he was incredible.“I want him to sustain that for a long time. I didn’t want him [playing] games, games, games and Gundo [Ilkay Gundogan] has been on top form.”De Bruyne was just turnioniown 🔥 🔥 🔥— Junaid Tawphyc 🇳🇬 (@Haryur_) February 6, 2019The victory at Everton moved City back to the top of the Premier League for the first time since December on goal difference, although they have now played a game more than nearest rivals Liverpool and Tottenham.last_img read more

first_img Posted: June 24, 2019 KUSI Newsroom 00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek  . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave SettingsSAN DIEGO (KUSI) – Measles is highly contagious and can be extremely serious for young children.Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego Infection Control Coordinator Megan Medina joined Good Morning San Diego to discuss measles protocol.• Goal is for families contact their primary care doctor or emergency room first before visiting the location• Leave patient in car and have a family member go into the ER to notify a medical provider• Symptoms for measles:• Running Nose, Rash, Water Eyes, Fever June 24, 2019 Categories: Good Morning San Diego, Health, Local San Diego News FacebookTwitter KUSI Newsroom, Protocol for parents when there’s a suspected measles caselast_img read more

first_imgCourse participants visit the HFI processing plant in Moorhead, Minn. Credit: NCIASA/WISHH is in North Dakota this week, learning more about the growing and handling of food grade soybeans, the contracting process and meeting with U.S. exporters. Rick Chase, ASA/WISHH’s in-country representative for Myanmar, is attending the course at the Northern Crops Institute (NCI) and will use the content to follow-up with Myanmar soymilk and tofu processors to facilitate future sales with U.S. exporters.This is a follow-up activity to the food grade soybean USDA funded Quality Samples Program (QSP) that was conducted earlier this year. Seven food grade soybean varieties from three different U.S. exporters were sent to Myanmar. The varieties were tested by soymilk and tofu processors. Many of the processors are interested in learning more about U.S. food grade soybeans and obtain price quotes.The Northern Food Grade Soybean Association (NFGSA) organized the course, with course funding provided by the North Dakota Soybean Council and Minnesota Soybean Research and Promotion Council. USDA Market Access Program (MAP) funding was also used for Chases’ travel expenses.last_img read more

first_imgSince the start of the sweep in Anchorage and Eagle River, DOT has marked 240 signs, and have only had to remove 22. According to McCarthy, DOT marks the illegally placed signs with surveyor tape and gives the campaign a week to move the sign before DOT removes the sign completely. Facebook0TwitterEmailPrintFriendly分享The Alaska Department of Transportation (DOT) has officially begun the process of marking and removing illegally placed campaign signs. McCarthy: “Once we marked them we’ve had great conversations with the campaigns, most of which weren’t aware that their sign was illegally placed.”  Shannon McCarthy, DOT spokesperson: “The Department of Transportation has received a great deal of business complaints about signs that are places in the right-of-way or really close to the road, what we call in the ‘clear zone’ which is 30 feet from the roadway.” Alaska statutes and regulations address unauthorized signs both within and along the state’s public rights-of-way including parked vehicles displaying such signs and signs on private property. The DOT sweep will be making its way to the Kenai Peninsula in the coming week, according to McCarthy. The owner of an illegally placed sign or the people placing illegal signs are subject to a $50 fine per sign collected during the DOT sweep.last_img read more