Mercedes-Benz to increase investment in India by 2014

first_imgLuxury car maker Mercedes-Benz India has decided to increase its investment to Rs 850 crore by 2014. The German car maker has already made an investment of over Rs 480 crores spread across its 31 showroom and 41 service outlets located in 31 Indian cities.MBIL pioneered the luxury car industry in India by starting its India operations in 1994. The company moved into its production facility spread over 100 acres in Chakan in year 2009. Mercedes-Benz India is setting up its own technologically advanced paint shop, which will be operational by October, 2012. The new paint shop will have an annual capacity of 20,000 units.Mercedes-Benz India locally manufactures its flagship sedans the C-Class, the E-Class and the S-Class sedan in its Chakan plant near Pune. ‘”We are bullish about the Indian market and this is reflected in our long term commitment towards the dynamic Indian market. The investment of Rs 850 crores will help us strengthen our production and operational capabilities with regards to our existing products and our exciting and aggressive product offensive which we are readying for the Indian market,” said Peter T Honegg, Managing Director & CEO, Mercedes-Benz India, while talking to a business daily.Mercedes-Benz India ‘s sales reportedly fell nearly 24 per cent to 1,633 units during April-July, compared with 2,141 units sold in the year-ago period.”The rupee has had a terrible impact on the company. We are close to catastrophic mood means we are cutting costs wherever possible, our guys are flying economy (class), we are going to cheaper hotels, we are cost cutting wherever possible,” a news report quoting Peter Honegg, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Mercedes-Benz India, said.    The report said the company is forced to absorb Rs 3 of every jump of Rs 10 in prices to avoid impacting retail demand which has been under pressure.In order to counter BMW and Audi’s rise in volumes riding high on the back of demand for cheaper sports utility vehicles (SUVs), Mercedes is also gearing up to launch a compact SUV in 2014-15 in India.Besides, the German company has also opened its first showroom in Lucknow, the first such dealership by a luxury car maker in Uttar Pradesh. The luxury car maker is expanding its footprint to Tier-II cities despite facing a stiff competition from rivals BMW and Audi.The company has recently launched such dealerships in Indore (Madhya Pradesh) and Karnal (Haryana), plans to sell 50 cars by December through the Lucknow dealership, ‘Smart Hoops’, and double the sales in 2013.With Agency inputsadvertisementlast_img read more

ATP Finals: A Look at All Eight Contenders as Season-end Finale Begins on Sunday

first_img Get the best of News18 delivered to your inbox – subscribe to News18 Daybreak. Follow News18.com on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Telegram, TikTok and on YouTube, and stay in the know with what’s happening in the world around you – in real time. London: Alexander Zverev last year denied Novak Djokovic a record-equalling sixth title at the ATP Finals but the Serbian is the man to beat at the O2 Arena in London.AFP Sport takes a look at the eight-strong field for the tournament, starting on Sunday. NOVAK DJOKOVICFavourite Novak Djokovic, 32, shrugged off his defeat in last year’s final and collected another two Grand Slams in 2019, taking him to 16 in total. The second seed has his sights set on matching Roger Federer’s haul of six titles at the end-of-season event and dislodging Rafael Nadal to end the year as world number one after winning in Tokyo and Paris in recent weeks.RAFAEL NADALNew world number one and top seed Rafael Nadal secured his customary French Open title in June before winning his fourth US Open crown in September. The 33-year-old Spaniard, who has never won the ATP Finals, missed the tournament last year through injury and there are again questions over his fitness as he seeks to finish the year in top spot.ROGER FEDERERRoger Federer has won four titles in 2019 but his season will be remembered for the one that got away at Wimbledon, where he held two championship points on his own serve before eventually succumbing to Djokovic. The 38-year-old Swiss player holds the record for the most titles at the end-of-season event but has not won since 2011 and could see his record equalled by the Serbian this year.DANIIL MEDVEDEVRussia’s Daniil Medvedev, 23, has had a breakthrough year, wining four titles and reaching the US Open final, where he battled back from two sets down to square the match against Nadal only to lose the decider. His victory at the Shanghai Masters, where he beat Zverev in the final, was his second straight Masters title.DOMINIC THIEMAustria’s Dominic Thiem, 26, will be playing at the ATP Finals for a fourth consecutive year after an impressive season in which he has won five titles, including his first Masters crown at Indian Wells, where he beat Federer in the final. But Thiem has yet to progress past the round-robin phase at the end-of-season tournament.STEFANOS TSITSIPASStefanos Tsitsipas has progressed from lifting the Next Gen ATP Finals trophy last year to qualifying for the ATP Finals for the first time. The 21-year-old, the first Greek player to break into the top five of the ATP rankings, has won two ATP Tour titles in 2019.ALEXANDER ZVEREVThe 2019 season has been a relative disappointment for Germany’s Alexander Zverev after his victory against Djokovic in the final of last year’s ATP Finals. He crashed out in the first round at Wimbledon and failed to make it past the quarter-finals in any of the Grand Slams. The 22-year-old’s win at the O2 Arena last year appeared to underline his status as the leader of the next generation but he has fallen behind Medvedev.MATTEO BERRETTINIMatteo Berrettini clinched the final spot at the ATP Finals following results at the Paris Masters, becoming the first Italian to qualify in singles since Corrado Barazzutti in 1978. The 23-year-old, who was ranked 57th in the world in March, has soared up the rankings, winning two ATP titles. alexander zverevATP FinalsATP TourDaniil Medvedev First Published: November 9, 2019, 4:50 PM ISTlast_img read more

Davis Cup Finals an ‘Absolute Success’, Says Gerard Pique

first_img Get the best of News18 delivered to your inbox – subscribe to News18 Daybreak. Follow News18.com on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Telegram, TikTok and on YouTube, and stay in the know with what’s happening in the world around you – in real time. Madrid: Barcelona footballer Gerard Pique insisted on Saturday the inaugural Davis Cup Finals in Madrid have been an “absolute success”, although he did admit some changes would have to be made in future.The controversial week-long finals were launched by Pique’s investment company Kosmos, replacing the old World Group which saw teams play each other in longer ties spread across the year. “The competition is an absolute success,” Pique told broadcasters Movistar.”The most important thing is that it has a soul… The players have reactions that they don’t even have in the Grand Slams.”There have been some issues at the Caja Magica, with low attendances for many matches, while Wednesday’s group-stage tie between the United States and Italy ended at 4:04am local time.”I think this is the base and from there it will grow a lot,” added Pique.”Things are going to be retouched, obviously. The issue of the schedules must be retouched. But that’s what happens to events when the format is changed.”Pique arrived at the Caja Magica to watch Spain’s semi-final against Britain after playing in Barcelona’s 2-1 win over Leganes earlier on Saturday.Canada beat Russia in the other last-four match to book their place in Sunday’s final. davis cupfootballGerard Piquetennis First Published: November 24, 2019, 11:08 AM ISTlast_img read more

CBSE amends affiliation by-laws, leaves infrastructural audit to states

first_imgNew Delhi, Oct 18 (PTI) The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has revamped its norms for granting affiliation to schools, leaving the onus of the infrastructural audit on states and limiting its own role to academic quality monitoring.Union HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar announced Thursday that the affiliation by-laws of the CBSE have been completely revamped to ensure speed, transparency, hassle-free procedures and ease of doing business with the board.”The new by-laws denote a major shift from the highly complex procedures followed earlier to a simplified system based on preventing duplication of processes. At present, for issuing recognition under the RTE Act and the NOC, the state education administration verifies various certificates to be obtained from local bodies, revenue and cooperative departments. CBSE re-verifies them after the applications are received and hence the process becomes long drawn,” he told reporters here.”The board will now not revisit any of the aspects vetted by the state during its inspection and the delay due to scrutiny and non-compliance of deficiencies in these documents shall be drastically curtailed. Inspection of schools by the CBSE will now be outcome-based and more academic and quality-oriented,” Javadekar added.The CBSE has 20,783 schools affiliated to it across the country and abroad, with over 1.9 crore students and more than 10 lakh teachers. The affiliation by-laws were formulated in the year 1998 and were last modified in 2012.”The inspection by the CBSE will focus on academic excellence and progress of students over time, innovations and quality of pedagogy, capacity of teachers and teacher training, inclusive practices in school, quality of co-scholastic activities, whether the curricular load is as per norms and whether there is adequate emphasis on sports,” he said.advertisementAccording to the new norms, the pendency of the applications will also be dealt with seriously and the applications will henceforth be disposed of in the same year, and the entire process will be online.The new provisions mandate schools to make full disclosure of fee structure and prohibit them from levying any hidden charges, Javadekar said. PTI GJS IJTlast_img read more

Ole Gunnar Solskjær backs De Gea despite goalkeeper’s latest error

first_imgShare on Messenger Read more Reuse this content On his side’s prospects of sealing a top-four finish, Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri said: “We have to win the last two matches otherwise we are at risk with the goal difference.”United’s Eric Bailly will miss the rest of the season with a knee injury while Sarri hopes Willian can recover from a knock though he fears Rüdiger may have a serious knee injury. Share on Twitter Manchester United “David knows he could have done better with the goal, there’s no reason hiding that. But there’s no chance any of us will point fingers because he’s saved us so many times.”United have now won only twice in the past 10 games and Solskjær admitted their failure to hold on to the lead had been a frustration.“It’s because we’re challenging against good teams,” he said. “Maybe it’s been inconsistency. Against Chelsea we were flying, creating chances on the front foot, and everyone was very pleased with the performance. But the second half was just a scrappy game, we never got the quality from either team.” He added: “David has been unbelievable. We do support each other. There is no chance anyone can blame him for losing points. He knows he could have had that shot but that is football. David is one who likes to play games and I will have chats with him and he will respond in the right way.”Solskjær also indicated he would not leave the Spain goalkeeper out when United travel to Huddersfield Town for Sunday’s penultimate Premier League game. Asked if it might be better to drop him, Solskjær responded: “You think so? There’s many different ways of getting back into your best performances and of course I’ll sit down and speak to David as I’ve done when he’s played well – he’s not the reason why we are sixth.”The result leaves United on 65 points, three behind Chelsea in fourth who also have a superior goal difference by eight. United took the lead through Juan Mata’s 11th-minute goal and were in control until Antonio Rüdiger’s 30-yard shot was spilled by De Gea and Marcos Alonso fielded the rebound to equalise.It is the latest in a run of mistakes from the goalkeeper that have cost nine goals over the last two months. The most recent were those that handed City both in last Wednesday’s 2-0 derby defeat at Old Trafford, as well as errors for two of the goals conceded in the 4-0 loss at Everton.But Solskjær refused to accept that De Gea has become complacent because of thinking his place is untouchable, with the manager pointing to the quality of his understudies, Sergio Romero and Lee Grant.“He’s got two great keepers underneath him in Sergio and Lee,” said the Norwegian. “Sergio’s played well every time he’s played. Lee’s fantastic in training, they keep pushing each other. You cannot say there’s any complacency, David is not the type to be complacent, he’s a competitor, he wants to be the best and, for whatever reason, whenever I didn’t score [as a former striker] a goal, my confidence dropped if I missed chances. David de Gea’s blunder hands Chelsea a point at Manchester United Share on Pinterest news Ole Gunnar Solskjaercenter_img Chelsea Share via Email Read more Ole Gunnar Solskjær refused to say he should have dropped David de Gea after the goalkeeper’s latest blunder allowed Chelsea to draw 1-1 at Old Trafford and damaged Manchester United’s hopes of Champions League qualification.“No,” said Solskjær when asked if De Gea should have been left out. “David has been a fantastic keeper at this club, his reaction after Manchester City was good and I was confident in him. He knows he could do better with their goal but it’s one of those things again.” Ole Gunnar Solskjær faces thankless task to revive Manchester United Share on LinkedIn Topics The Fiver: sign up and get our daily football email. Share on WhatsApp Share on Facebooklast_img read more

US Open 2019: Nadal advances after Kokkinakis walkover, Kyrgios eases into 3rd round

first_img Next US Open 2019: Nadal advances after Kokkinakis walkover, Kyrgios eases into 3rd roundUS Open: While Rafael Nadal made it to the 3rd round after Australian wildcard Thanasi Kokkinakis retired with a shoulder injury, Nick Kyrgios advanced amid controversy surrounding his comments against the ATP. advertisement Reuters New YorkAugust 30, 2019UPDATED: August 30, 2019 09:11 IST US Open 2019: Rafael Nadal will be well rested ahead of his 3rd-round match (Reuters Photo)HIGHLIGHTSNadal will take on Hyeon Chung in the 3rd roundKyrgios defeated Antoine Hoang 6-4, 6-2, 6-4 in his 2nd-round matchKyrgios is under investigation by ATP Tour for critical comments about organisationThree-time champion Rafa Nadal got a walkover into the third round of the US Open after Australian wildcard Thanasi Kokkinakis withdrew from their evening match on Thursday.Kokkinakis, whose clash with the Spanish second seed was scheduled to close out the Thursday night session at Arthur Ashe Stadium, withdrew with a right shoulder injury, tournament organisers said in a statement.The 23-year-old Australian, who has struggled badly with injury in recent years, beat Bulgarian qualifier Ilya Ivashka in his opening match this week and was seeking his first appearance in the US Open third round.Nadal will now face South Korea’s Chung Hyeon who defeated Spain’s Fernando Verdasco in his 2nd-round match on Thursday.Fiery Nick Kyrgios storms into 3rd roundMeanwhile, Fiery Australian Nick Kyrgios mostly kept his cool en route to a 6-4, 6-2, 6-4 dismantling of Antoine Hoang in their second-round clash.The 28th seed had a row with the umpire even before the match started but avoided a full scale meltdown to reach the third round at Flushing Meadows for the fourth time.Although his play was accompanied by the usual outbursts of temper, mostly aimed at himself, there was little wrong with his tennis as he set up a meeting with Russian Andrey Rublev in just under two hours.Kyrgios, who is under investigation by the ATP Tour for critical comments he made about the organisation this week, won the opening coin toss and chose to receive.It proved a smart decision as he broke the unseeded Frenchman in the first game and held serve at love in the next to race out to a 2-0 lead he would not relinquish.advertisementHe broke Hoang again early in the second and third sets to suck any drama out of the affair and keep his bid for a maiden Grand Slam title on track.The only bright spot for the 23-year-old Hoang came in the third set, when he landed a deft backhand volley to break Kyrgios, who applauded his opponent.But Kyrgios’ 24 aces and punishing forehands proved too much for Hoang to handle and he went quietly into the warm New York night on the Grandstand court.Before the match started, the combustible Kyrgios appeared to be up to his usual antics when he had the collar on his polo shirt popped up to reveal the words “Just Do You.”The chair umpire told him to put it down and Kyrgios demanded to know why, asking to speak to a supervisor and saying he would not play until he was shown the rule in writing.After a brief conversation with a supervisor he backed down and the match began as scheduled.Also Read | Simona Halep disappointed after another early exit from US OpenAlso See:For sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for Sports news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted byAkshay Ramesh Tags :Follow Rafael NadalFollow US Open 2019Follow Nick KyrgiosFollow Hyeon ChungFollow Thanasi KokkinakisFollow TennisFollow ATPlast_img read more

House Suspends Debate on Revenue Administration Act

first_imgDebate on the Revenue Administration (Amendment) Act has been suspended until June 18, to allow for further deliberations on the proposals contained in the Act.The move came after the Opposition raised concern about some of the provisions in the legislation, which seeks to, among other things, bring about significant improvements to the ability of the tax authorities to access tax-related information held by various parties.Finance and Planning Minister, Dr. the Hon. Peter Phillips, who opened the debate in the House of Representatives yesterday (June 12),  said the legislation will give the Commissioner General of Tax Administration Jamaica (TAJ) the power to demand useful and useable information in a form appropriate to the individual sectors.He said it will facilitate more efficient and effective exercise of the powers of investigation, audit, assessment collection, and enforcement by TAJ, and improve the quality and usefulness of information supplied to TAJ by various parties on a periodic basis.“Revenue authorities are currently restricted in their efforts to promote compliance in all sectors of the economy because of their inability to collect and use information that is needed and to identify, register, audit and access certain taxpayers. Lack of information is acknowledged to be one of the main obstacles to tax collections with some known sources of information being sealed off by the present laws,”Dr. Phillips stated. He argued that there is a high rate of delinquency associated with the undetectable income-generating activities of unregistered persons.“As the law now stands there are too many opportunities for those who seek to evade taxes and find grounds of resistance to the tax authorities in the form of the secrecy provisions that exists in the current legislation and the overly circumscribed narrow powers of the Commissioner General,” Dr. Phillips stated.The Act also intends to facilitate a more effective exchange of information with Jamaica’s treaty partners under the various double taxation agreements.It will also ensure that the information provided will enable Jamaica to meet the international standards of transparency and exchange of information for tax purposes.In his remarks, Opposition Spokesperson on Finance, Audley Shaw, argued that more time is needed to get feedback on the provisions on the Bill as the consequences are far reaching.He noted that the proposed amendments seek to give tax authorities more power than they already have. Mr. Shaw recommended that a Committee of Parliament be formed to hold discussions on the legislation.By Latonya Linton, JIS Reporterlast_img read more

Benedict Cumberbatch Claire Foy to star in Louis Wain biopic

first_imgLos Angeles: Benedict Cumberbatch and Claire Foy are teaming up for the biopic on English artiste Louis Wain in the eponymous film. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the drama will follow the story of the real-life Victorian painter known for his paintings and drawings of anthropomorphised big-eyed cats and kittens. In his later years, it is believed he had schizophrenia, the effects of which, according to some psychiatrists, are visible in his works. Wain died in 1939. Also Read – I have personal ambitions now: Priyanka Cumberbatch will essay the title role, while Foy will play his wife, Emily. The film marks the first collaboration between the “Avengers: Endgame” star and “The Crown” star. BAFTA-nominated filmmaker Will Sharpe is attached to direct from a script he co-wrote with Simon Stephenson. The project is being produced by Showbox Films alongside Cumberbatch’s production banner SunnyMarch, with support from StudioCanal and Film4. The film goes on floors next month at London’s famous Ealing Studios.last_img read more

Deepak Talwar sent to 7day CBI custody in aviation scam

first_imgNew Delhi: The CBI was on Friday granted seven-day custody of aviation lobbyist Deepak Talwar by a special court here after the court denied him anticipatory bail in the matter earlier the same day. The probe agency had sought custody of Talwar in connection with a UPA-era aviation scam, two years after the agency had registered an FIR in the case.The lobbyist, who was already in judicial custody, lodged at Tihar Jail, in a PMLA case, is the first person the agency will question in custody, in connection with the case. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’The case pertains to allegations that during senior Congress leader Praful Patel’s time as the Civil Aviation Minister, several profitable air routes and timings were given to private foreign airlines, causing huge losses to the national carrier. While neither Talwar nor any other person is named in the CBI’s FIR, the agency had moved an application in a special court here, seeking custody of the aviation lobbyist, who is also named as an accused in the Air Asia scam and the Advantage India NGO case. Also Read – Farooq demands unconditional release of all detainees in J&KAs Talwar was produced in court on Friday morning, his counsel moved an anticipatory bail plea before special Judge Anil Kumar Sisodia, who denied the plea and dismissed the application after hearing arguments. The CBI then presented an arrest memo, with the court deciding to announce whether Talwar will be sent to police custody or judicial custody after lunch. The defense had argued that the probe agency’s arrest memo did not fulfill all requirements as prescribed by the Supreme Court of India. However, granting CBI Talwar’s custody, the court added that he can meet his lawyers and family members between 5 to 6 pm on alternate days, rejecting the request to meet family members every day. Special judge Sisodia also said that a prescription for his daily medicines must be provided to the CBI’s investigating officer, with a medical check-up to be done every 48 hours. He is to appear before the court again on August 2 at 2 pm. The case that CBI has sought Talwar’s custodial interrogation for pertains to a PIL filed in the Apex court in 2012, which alleged large-scale corruption in the Civil Aviation Ministry during the UPA regime. The Supreme Court had then directed the central agency to register cases to probe these allegations, after which three FIRs and one Preliminary Enquiry were registered by the CBI. This case alleges that “foreign airlines were given unrestricted entry into India and major routes were given to them without taking any reciprocal benefits for Air India”. The CBI goes on to allege that despite warnings of huge losses to the national carrier, Civil Aviation Ministry officials had dishonestly given pecuniary benefits to private, domestic and foreign airlines. Specifically, the CBI alleged that up to four international air routes and nine domestic air routes were awarded to private airlines such as Jet Airways, Kingfisher Airlines, Go Air, Indigo, Spicejet, Paramount Airways, and others, while Air India withdrew its services from these routes. Taking cognizance of this FIR, the ED had registered a money-laundering probe against Talwar, who was earlier questioned and arrested by the financial probe agency in connection with the case. The ED’s probe had revealed that Talwar was paid Rs 272 crore to secure air traffic rights for airlines such as Emirates, Qatar Airways, and Air Arabia. The ED had also questioned Patel with regards to this case, after allegedly finding a link between him and Talwar.last_img read more

Latest round of UN climate change talks kicks off in Germany

2 June 2008Talks on strengthening international action on global warming have begun in Bonn, Germany under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). Talks on strengthening international action on global warming have begun in Bonn, Germany under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).The two-week round of negotiations will focus on furthering governments’ commitments to the Kyoto Protocol on climate change, and will include discussion on how industrialized countries can meet their emissions reduction targets beyond the first commitment period of the Protocol, which ends in 2012.“There is a huge global consciousness that urgent international action needs to be taken this year and the next. So we can expect good progress at this meeting,” said UNFCCC Executive Secretary Yvo de Boer.In Bonn governments will also discuss ways to facilitate the transfer of environmentally sound technologies to developing countries, reduce emissions from deforestation, increase investment for climate change, and improve the emissions trading system established under the Kyoto Protocol.“These are all key areas in the international response to climate change, both for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, as well as for adapting to the inevitable impacts of climate change,” Mr. de Boer said. More than 2,400 participants, including government delegates from 172 countries and representatives from business and industry, environmental organizations and research institutions are attending the two-week meeting. The aim of the negotiations is to create a successor pact to the Kyoto Protocol beyond 2012. The UNFCCC talks are scheduled to wrap up at a convention to be held in Copenhagen in December 2009. read more

DR Congo UN soldiers intervene after demonstrators set fire to Supreme Court

The UN Mission in the DRC (MONUC) said 150 men from its Uruguayan battalion reinforced local police after tear gas failed to disperse supporters of Vice-President Jean-Pierre Bemba who had gathered to attend the first hearing of an appeal of provisional results showing him losing to incumbent President Joseph Kabila. MONUC security personnel evacuated the Court and there were no immediate reports of casualties.“MONUC strongly deplores this new outbreak of violence and unjustified vandalism and calls on all sides to maintain calm,” the mission said in a statement, ascribing the blame to “rogue elements” among some 200 demonstrators in this latest outbreak of election-related violence.Last week, UN officials from Secretary-General Kofi Annan and the Security Council to regional UN envoys appealed for calm, calling on “all political actors to refrain from any provocation, incitement to hatred or recourse to violence” after violence in Kinshasa had led to the deaths of four people. The elections, the largest and most complex polls that the UN has ever helped to organize, were aimed at cementing the vast and impoverished country’s transition to stability after a brutal six-year civil war, which cost 4 million lives through fighting and attendant hunger and disease. Factional fighting has remained a problem since the end of the war, especially in the east.The elections for president, national and local assemblies, which began at the end of July and culminated with the presidential run-off on 29 October, were the first free polls in more than four decades. Throughout the long process UN agencies helped to deliver tens of millions of ballots and other supplies to some 50,000 polling stations, train 12,000 polling supervisors and plan for the safety of the 25.7 million Congolese registered to vote. read more

Tuesdays Daily Brief funding for Palestine refugees families today tech surveillance

Surveillance technology should be banned immediately until “effective” national or international controls are put in place to lessen its harmful impact, a UN-appointed independent rights expert said on Tuesday.David Kaye, who’s the United Nations Special Rapporteur on freedom of opinion and expression, made the appeal as he prepared to present his latest report to the Human Rights Council in Geneva.Find our complete story here.20,000 migrants rescued in Sahara since 2016 The work of the UN body responsible for assisting Palestine refugees, UNRWA, which has allowed millions of children to receive an education that promotes UN values of human rights and tolerance, as well as democracy and conflict resolution, should be viewed “not only as our common responsibility, but as our common success”, said Secretary-General António Guterres on Tuesday.The UN chief was speaking at the opening of the 2019 pledging conference for UNRWA, officially the Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East, alongside the President of the General Assembly, María Fernanda Espinosa Garcés, and the agency’s Commissioner-General, Pierre Krähenbühl.Find our full coverage here.And here’s our interview with Matthias Schmale, the head of UNRWA, on the humanitarian situation in Gaza:  While women’s rights have advanced over the decades, gender inequalities and other fundamental human rights violations within families persist, according to a flagship study released on Tuesday, from the UN’s gender empowerment agency.UN Women’s new report, “Progress of the World’s Women 2019-2020: Families in a Changing World”, shows that families, in all their diversity, “can be critical drivers of gender equality, provided decision-makers deliver policies rooted in the reality of how people live today, with women’s rights at their core”, said UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka.Find out more about the findings of the report here.Moratorium call on surveillance technology to end ‘free-for-all’ abuses: UN expert Nearly 20,000 people have been rescued from the desert in Niger since 2016 after trying to reach North Africa and being abandoned by traffickers, the UN migration agency IOM said on Tuesday.Ten days ago, IOM found more than 400 migrants in the Tenéré desert, among them seven women and four children.In Geneva, spokesperson Joel Millman said that although the migrant routes were not a secret, it was extremely difficult for rescuers to find migrants, whose trucks often break down or who are simply abandoned:“We know that probably thousands of victims and the remains aren’t even evident because they’re covered by sand or consumed by animals. We can only rely on luck, I would say mostly, and the ability to get resources marshalled. Sometimes local authorities can be really helpful, sometimes resources are really stretched. So it’s a big region and we do our best with the knowledge we’re given at any given month.” In the latest rescue mission, Mr. Millman said that migrants had come from 14 West African countries, mainly Guinea, Mali and Côte d’Ivoire. Of all those rescued, 98 per cent opted for voluntary return to their countries of origin, he noted.Concern over slow decline of malnutrition in India Listen to or download our audio News In Brief for 25 June on SoundCloud: New UN report on families in a changing world puts ‘women’s rights at their core’ And finally to India, where the World Food Programme (WFP) has warned that despite progress in combating malnutrition, more than three in 10 children are stunted in much of the country.According to WFP, large numbers of India’s 1.3 billion people do not get enough vitamin A, iron and iodine, especially women and children. Prolonged periods without an adequate diet can have an irreversible impact on a child’s physical growth and brain development, the agency says.This is despite the fact that India is self-sufficient in food grain production and has seen a large increase in rice, wheat and cereal production.In a report published jointly by WFP and the Indian Government assessing the country’s progress towards achieving zero hunger by 2030, it notes that in the last decade, the body mass of Indian women and men dropped by 10 per cent 14 per cent respectively. While stunting has declined by one fifth in India in the last decade, it is still seeing the slowest rate of decline of other emerging economies and most countries in Asia, WFP says. UN chief praises impact of Palestine refugee agency as ‘our common success’, at key pledging conference read more

EHF NT ranking Denmark first Croatia and France follow

Danish handballDenmarkhandball The registration process for national federations wanting to enter national teams in the 2014 Men’s EHF European Championship has opened.National federations have until 9 March 2012 to register their interest in taking part in qualification to the event, which will take place from 12 to 26 January 2014 in Denmark.As part of the registration process, the official ranking of European national teams for entry to EHF EURO 2014 have been released. This can be downloaded here.15 places available through qualificationA total of 16 teams will take part in the event, with Denmark qualifying as host, and 15 places remaining from the qualification process.The EHF Executive Committee, at its meeting in Serbia on the final weekend of EHF EURO 2012, decided that the 15th place – previously reserved for the defending champion – will be allocated to the third best placed team out of the seven qualification groups. The first two in each group qualifying directly to the final event.The best third placed team will be decided on the basis of a ranking, with only the matches against the first and second placed teams in each group taken into consideration. The overall best ranked third team will then go through to the final event in Denmark.Qualification processQualification will be played in two phases, if necessary and depending on the number of entries, with Phase 1 to be played in tournament format at one venue from Friday 8 June to Sunday 10 June 2012. Phase 2 will be played in a home and away format, seven groups of four teams in six qualification rounds.The draw for Phase 1 is scheduled for 27 March 2012 in Vienna, Austria and for Phase 2 on 20 April 2012 in Copenhagen, Denmark.The four teams already directly qualified for the 2013 World Championship final tournament (Serbia, Croatia, Spain and France) and all teams having qualified for the 2013 World Championship Qualification Europe Play-offs qualify directly to Phase 2 of the EHF EURO 2014 Qualification.TEXT: EHF ← Previous Story IHF statement about OG Seeding System: Danes don’t speak about Women? Next Story → “Match of the Year”: MKB Veszprem calls for 5000 players read more

Mitchell Independent review needed on British nuclear plant risks

first_imgDUBLIN MEP GAY Mitchell has called for an independent review to be carried out of possible security risks posed by Britain’s nuclear power plants.The Fine Gael politician says the results of such a review, and any possible consequences for Ireland that are found, should be shared with TDs here as part of the British-Irish Parliamentary Assembly.His comments follow confirmation earlier this week that French energy giant EDF is to build a new nuclear facility at Hinkley Point, in Somerset. Ireland’s national trust organisation An Taisce has launched a legal action against the move.Speaking to European Parliament Radio, Mitchell said that Britain should commission the independent review as an act of “good neighbourliness”.“We have the British Irish Parliamentary Assembly and I think the security situation should be reported upon, and we should have the right to oversee and know at first hand what [it is],” the MEP said.He said that, as well as the risk posed by the fallout from any potential nuclear disaster, the country could be affected as Britain “may have to evacuate people to Ireland”.“We need to be assured absolutely independently that security arrangements at these plants and particularly at this new plant that’s going ahead now are independently assessed.“As a quid pro quo ,the British have an interest that the security of those plants is not compromised by anything that might come out of our sovereign territory, and we should be prepared to talk to them about that and what steps we should take if we found something of that kind — to work with them to prevent it.Mitchell added that he didn’t see any particular imminent danger, and stressed that there had been assurances from the British Government that there were’t any long term risks.HinkleyAt full capacity, the two new reactors at Hinkley Point will be able to produce seven per cent of Britain’s electricity, enough to power five million homes. If the deal is confirmed next year, it’s planned they’ll be operational by 2023.Lawyers for An Taisce are arguing that London did not consult with the Irish public ahead of confirming plans for the new project. The non-governmental organisation is seeking a judicial review of the decision to grant permission for the plant, and will take its action to the High Court in London in December.Separately, the case for nuclear energy in Ireland is being discussed at an Oireachtas committee meeting this morning. Better Environment with Nuclear Energy are giving their input. You can watch the proceedings here. Read: British nuclear plant deal to be challenged in court by An Taisce >Related: Nuclear power, Seanad reform, and everything else happening in Leinster House todaylast_img read more

Primark says that hidden message stitched onto a dress label was a

first_imgIt may be no more than a coincidence that an exhibition of labels of a similar kind was held in Swansea, also in 2013. Visitors were encouraged to sew labels, using similar wording and appearance to the hoax labels, onto clothing. PRIMARK SAYS THAT a label found on one of its dresses which appeared to come from a factory employee working in difficult conditions is a hoax.The Irish retail giant began an investigation after a customer discovered a label on a dress she bought in Swansea which read ‘Forced to work exhausting hours’.Rebecca Gallagher, 25, told the South Wales Evening Post that she feared the clothing was made by a worker toiling in a sweatshop.However the company – which operates as Penneys in Ireland and Primark everywhere else  – said it believed the label was likely to have been a hoax, pointing out that an exhibition of similar labels was held in Swansea last year.Primark said that a second identical label was found on another garment in Swansea. The label was exactly the same as the first, despite the fact that the two items of clothing were made in different countries.“It is almost impossibly to imagine circumstances in which such similar labels could have been sewn onto the garments at the factory where they were made, given that they were made by different suppliers, in different factories, on different continents, one in Romania and the other in India, thousands of miles apart,” a spokesperson said. A third label found on a pair of cropped trousers in Northern Ireland is still being investigated.Primark said that it places “the utmost importance on the well-being” of workers.Read: Shopper discovers ‘hidden message’ stitched onto Primark dress >last_img read more

Billionaire Con Makris joins the luxury hotel party in Adelaide

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Billionaire Con Makris, whose wealth has been estimated at $1.03 billion in the latest BRW Rich 200 List, is joining the throng of developers setting up new luxury hotels in Adelaide.Up to 500 new jobs are expected to be created when work begins on the long-neglected site formerly occupied by LeCornu in North Adelaide, following a deal signed by the developer.The agreement was signed between Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide and the Makris Group to begin work, with one of the hospitality sector’s most iconic names, the Sheraton, agreeing to run a 160-room hotel on the O’Connell Street site.The $200 million luxury residential, retail and hotel development received planning approval in June, and the hotel construction is now expected to start either late next year or in early 2017 and open its doors in mid-2019.South Australian Treasurer Tom Koutsantonis welcomed the announcement, saying public investment in Adelaide was helping leverage private investment in and around the city.“We are well aware of the jobs and investment that the visitor economy brings to our state, which is why our recent state budget included an unprecedented $35 million over two years to promote SA to key international and domestic markets,” he said.The hotel will offer leisure facilities including a state-of-the-art fitness centre and indoor swimming pool, with innovative work spaces and meeting rooms for business guests and a 300m2 ballroom. The development will boast eight buildings, including the five-star hotel, a 16-storey apartment tower, public piazza, underground carpark, retail stores and restaurants.Sheraton is owned by Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide, while the Makris Group owns the O’Connell St land and hotel. Sheraton will run the hotel on behalf of Makris. Billionaire Con Makris.The development will bring to an end more than 25 years of inactivity on a prime slice of Adelaide real estate. It will be the first Sheraton hotel in South Australia.The state is attracting more Asian and interstate tourists chasing premium food and wine experiences and has capitalised on the popularity of the new $535 million redevelopment of the Adelaide Oval, which attracts regular sellout crowds of more than 50,000 for Australian Football League matches and is within walking distance of the new Makris project.The higher tourism numbers were a bright spot in a state economy being hit hard by the looming closure of the car manufacturing industry as Holden prepares to exit by 2017, and heavy job losses as energy company Alinta is preparing to shut down two power stations at Port Augusta in the state’s north, with the loss of 438 jobs.last_img read more

Christchurch mosque shooter visited Greece in 2016

first_imgNew Zealand investigations are looking into the background of Brenton Harrison Tarrant after he livestreamed himself attacking a Christchurch mosque while people were at prayer, resulting in the death of 50 people and dozens injured.His rifle had the name of a Greek War of Independence hero and his 74-page manifesto included a section addressed to Turks regarding Hagia Sophia and Constantinople.READ MORE: Greek Community of Australia condemns the Christchurch mosque attacksPolice released a statement on Sunday confirming that the shooter had stayed on the Greek islands of Crete and Santorini and had passed through Greece twice in 2016. Authorities in Bulgaria, Turkey, Croatia and Hungary have also confirmed visits between 2016 and 2017. Tarrant was particularly interested in the Ottoman Empire, and he had visited Turkey in March and September 2018.READ MORE: Greek community of New Zealand helps Christchurch mosque victimsFollowing confirmation of Tarrant’s visits to Greece, Greek police are searching for clues as to Tarrant’s activities in Greece and are looking for phone records or purchases made during his stay. Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more

San Diego Surfrider Foundation intends to sue over Tijuana pollution

first_img 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 SettingsTuesday morning, the Surfrider Foundation San Diego held a press conference about their campaign stop the sewage flow from Tijuana River Valley that is polluting local waterways. Elizabeth Alvarez was live in San Ysidro to cover the event.As of Tuesday, 10:42 AM, the Surfrider Foundation announced it plans to sue a federal agency in response to years of sewage flow from the Tijuana River into U.S. waterways.The nonprofit submitted a 60-day notice of intent to sue the United States Section of the International Boundary and Water Commission. The action came one day after state Attorney General Xavier Becerra and the San Diego Regional Water Quality Control Board did the same.The notices allege the commission, which is tasked with seeking binational solutions to land issues, hasn’t done enough to stop millions of gallons of raw sewage from flowing into the United States over the last several decades.Commission spokeswoman Lori Kuczmanski said the agency does not comment on pending litigation.Sewage spills from the Tijuana River have rankled government, environmental and recreational stakeholders for decades.The Surfrider Foundation began a sewage cleanup campaign in 2008, but it ramped up activities after as much as 230 million gallons of waste spilled into the Pacific Ocean over a 17-day span in February 2017.The group decided to file the notice to sue after work groups, meetings, public education and cleanups yielded nothing substantial, Surfrider Foundation Policy Coordinator Gabriela Torres said.“Because our activities have failed over the last year to result in any sort of tangible solution, we decided the next step is to file the intent to sue to pressure the commission and federal government to remedy this problem,” she said. “There has been a lead up to this. We take litigation seriously and only use it as a last resort, so we felt there was no otheroption.”Surfrider’s planned suit against the commission claims repeated violations of the Clean Water Act, and violations of the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit it holds for the South Bay International Wastewater Treatment Plant near the border.Sewage spills have sickened people and caused beach closures as far north as Coronado.Surfrider’s notice cites the negative recreational and economic impact waste flows have had on South Bay cities and neighborhoods, including Imperial Beach and Coronado.It also notes the health threat to Border Patrol and Navy personnel who train in coastal waters. In 2010, former Border Patrol agent Josh Willey contracted a flesh-eating bacterial infection while training at the Naval Amphibious Base in Coronado.The Port of San Diego and cities of Chula Vista and Imperial Beach filed their own lawsuit against the commission in March.The foundation could drop plans to file its lawsuit if the commission commits to undertaking projects to mitigate sewage flows, Torres said. In the meantime, foundation officials said they hope increased legal action will spur quicker progress.“Right now there are a lot of interested parties trying to pressure the commission, and we feel that us coming together with our own unique angles, but a unified voice, will lead us to find a solution,” Torres said. May 15, 2018 Categories: Good Morning San Diego, Local San Diego News FacebookTwitter Updated: 11:35 AM San Diego Surfrider Foundation intends to sue over Tijuana pollutioncenter_img Elizabeth Alvarez, Posted: May 15, 2018 Elizabeth Alvarez last_img read more

John Lewis Partnership reports a 139 mean gender pay gap

first_imgJohn Lewis Partnership has reported a 13.9% mean gender pay gap for fixed hourly pay based on data from April 2017.The retailer has reported its gender pay gap data in line with the government’s gender pay gap reporting regulations and ahead of the private sector submission deadline of 4 April 2018.The gender pay gap reporting regulations require organisations with 250 or more employees to publish the difference between both the mean and median hourly rate of pay for male and female full-time employees; the difference between both the mean bonus pay and median bonus pay for male and female employees; the proportions of male and female employees who were awarded bonus pay; and the proportions of male and female full-time employees in the lower, lower middle, upper middle and upper quartile pay bands.John Lewis Partnership’s median gender pay gap for fixed hourly pay is 7.8% as at 5 April 2017.Its mean gender pay gap for bonuses paid in the year to 5 April 2017 is 30.1%, and the median gender pay gap for bonus pay is 41.3%. Over this period, 97% of both male and female employees received a bonus payment.Less than half (44%) of employees in the highest pay quartile at John Lewis Partnership are women, compared to 58% in the second quartile, 65% in the third quartile and 63% in the lowest pay quartile.John Lewis Partnership has attributed its gender pay gap to the balance of men and women across different job levels, with more women filling junior, lower-paid positions. The organisation’s analysis shows that 61% of its most junior workforce working in the lowest-paid jobs are women, compared to 40% working in the highest-paid senior leadership roles and 46% employed as specialist or non-senior management. In addition, 75% of employees who work night time shifts, and therefore are paid the corresponding premium, are male.The organisation’s pay ranges also differ by job function, which further influences its pay gap data. For example, 80% of its personnel function is filled by women, compared to 35% of IT roles. The organisation’s pay-for-performance model has also impacted its gender pay gap figures, because this creates individual pay rates based on an employee’s specific contribution.The retailer has attributed its bonus gender pay gap to the fact that men worked more hours than women in the year to April 2017, with many part-time roles within the organisation being filled by women. Its bonus scheme is based on an employee’s hourly rate of pay and the number of hours worked. Last year, male employees worked 20% more hours a week than female employees, which influenced average bonus rates.To mitigate its gender pay gap, John Lewis Partnership will focus on why a smaller proportion of its junior female employees progress into senior leadership roles. To support this goal, the organisation has committed to giving all employees access to new career opportunities, offer interview support and develop its talent forums, provide mentoring and coaching from a bank of 90 accredited internal coaches, highlight its internal employee networks, and promote organisational policies around flexible working and shared parental leave.It will also develop its attitudes to flexible working, encourage conversations around diversity and inclusion at work, and offer e-learning modules on facing bias and inclusion, which will be mandatory for all line managers. Senior leaders within the business will also participate in national campaigns, such as Retail Week’s Be Inspired, to help improve the representation of women in the retail industry.In the report, Tracey Killen, director of personnel at John Lewis Partnership, stated: “Even though we are proud of all the activity we undertake in the [organisation], the gender pay gap shown in this report demonstrates that male [employees] receive a higher average pay rate. This is largely through them being underrepresented at our most junior level and overrepresented in the most senior or highly paid roles and functions.“We welcome the annual requirement to publish gender pay comparisons; it offers an important opportunity to reinforce our existing programme of work, as well as stimulus for fresh initiatives. All our work on diversity and inclusion is designed to enable [employees] to maximise their abilities and contribution. Reporting annually also allows us to measure the progress that our interventions have made, and encourage all of our [employees] to be aware of the contribution they can make to supporting opportunities for themselves and their fellow [employees].“The gender pay gap calculations covers more than 80,000 [employees] and, across such a large population, the overall figures are unlikely to change significantly in the short term. Rather than focus simply on these headline figures, we will to place our collective energy into the areas that this report shines a light on, to ensure we fulfil our commitment to allowing all [employees] to reach their full potential.”last_img read more