Greece – already knocked out of European tourney play – has drawn 2014 World Cup toughies Belgium and Bosnia-Herzegovina for the 2018 FIFA World Cup soccer group.Also in the bracket are Estonia and Cyprus. The drawings were made in St. Petersburg, Russia. The news came as heavily-favored Greece was beaten twice by the lowly Faroe Islands in European play.The top team of the group advances to the 2018 group finals, while the runner-up will have to negotiate a home-and-away play-off. The qualifying round begins in September 2016.Greece was represented in Russia by the head of the Hellenic Football Federation, Giorgos Girtzikis and two more officials, but neither manager Sergio Markarian nor National Team Director Giorgos Karagounis were present.Markarian had quit but Girtzikis asked him to stay on. Markarian had been critical of Karagounis and it’s seen as unlikely either will be around for 2018. TweetPinShare0 Shares
Players headed to the Rugby World Cup in Japan next year have been advised to hide their tattoos in public places to avoid being mistaken for gangsters.World Rugby, the game’s governing body, has been educating the teams and fans on Japanese culture with a year to go to the tournament.In the East Asian country, tattoos are associated with the Yakuza – the Japanese mafia – which is why World Cup visitors have been asked to cover them up in public.In Japan, tattoos are associated with the Yakuza — the Japanese mafia — and that is why the visitors are being asked to cover them up in public.”We will make [Japanese] people aware around the facilities that players will use in the country that people with tattoos in a Rugby World Cup context are not part of the Yakuza, the Japanese mafia,” World Rugby COO Alan Gilpin said.However, the rule will not be enforced during matches. They have been directed to wear long-sleeved vests in public gyms and swimming pools.While many players sport some form of ink, especially in the Australian and New Zealand teams, they have been understanding.Most of the players, who have tattoos on their body, have been understanding of the matter and nobody has expressed any sort of frustration even though the association expected some, according to Gilpin.”Whether it is Scotland, Ireland, Wales or Italy, who have all been there recently, they all get it,” Gilpin said.He went onto add that nothing will be forced on the players but the players would look to do so because of their respect towards the culture.advertisementPlayers will also be expected to wear different footwear for inside and outside.Players could also wear different footwear for inside and outside environments to hide any ink on that part of the body.The Rugby World Cup starts September 20, 2019 and the first match will be played between hosts Japan and Russia at Tokyo Stadium.
Vivo is on a roll and it doesn’t seem to stop any time soon. The Chinese smartphone manufacturer launched a new smartphone in its home market on Thursday. The Vivo Z3i. The smartphone looks a lot like the recently announced V11 from the outside but differs inside. The phone comes with waterdrop notch, minimal bezels, and a rear-mounted fingerprint sensor.The Vivo Z3i has been launched in China and as of now, there’s no word if the phone will come to India or not. The smartphone has been launched for a price tag of $347, which when roughly translated to INR comes around Rs 25,572. Vivo recently launched a bunch of new smartphones in India including the V11 Pro, the V9 Pro and the V11.Coming back to the newly launched phone, the Vivo Z3i comes with a glass design and there are metallic inserts which make the phone look beautiful and sleek. Just as the V11 Pro, the V9 Pro and the V11, the new Vivo Z3i also looks stunning. The Vivo phone comes with a 6.3-inch IPS LCD panel, which might disappoint a few considering the V11 Pro which also belongs to the same price segment packs a S-AMOLED screen.The display of the Vivo Z3i has a Full HD+ resolution of 1080 x 2280 pixels. Like the newly launched V11 series the Vivo Z3i also comes with waterdrop notch display which equips the selfie camera in it. The smartphone runs Android 8.1 Oreo with FunTouch OS on top and is powered by a 3,315mAh battery.advertisementOn the hardware front, the Vivo Z3i is powered by a MediaTek Helio P60 chipset paired with 6GB RAM and 128GB of internal storage which can also be expanded further via microSD card. The Z3i comes in two colour gradients — Millennium Pink and Aurora Blue.ALSO READ: Vivo NEX, V11 Pro, V9 and other Vivo phones to get big discounts during Diwali Carnival sale starting Oct 15The newly launched Vivo phone comes with dual camera setup on the rear panel. The phone equips a primary sensor of 16-megapixel and secondary sensor of 2-megapixel. On the front, the Vivo Z3i sports a 24-megapixel sensor which is also used to unlock the phone using the face. Unlike the V11 Pro, the new Vivo Z3i doesn’t include the in-display fingerprint sensor, instead comes with a rear mounted sensor to unlock the phone.
Read more Read more In defense of artificial turf: why it’s time to destigmatize plastic pitches Share on WhatsApp Technology has moved on hugely and it’s difficult to put your finger on exactly why there is so much oppositionBruce Elliot, Sutton United chairman “If you talk to chairmen in the EFL, then they don’t seem very keen,” says Elliot. “But when you actually ask them about why they object to it, they say: ‘Well of course we do train on it.’ So if it’s good enough for training, so much for injuries to the players. That argument goes soaring out of the window. There’s definitely people who still remember the old bouncy pitches. But people aren’t using the same computers they were using 30 years ago, so why would you think that what happened at Luton and QPR is anything like what is happening now? Technology has moved on hugely and it’s difficult to put your finger on exactly why there is so much opposition.”Sutton paid £500,000 to lay their pitch in 2015 and have enjoyed a meteoric rise since. Promoted from National League South in the first season, they secured a mid-table finish in the National League as well as making it to the fifth round of the FA Cup last season. Sutton’s players remain part-time, with much of the club’s income generated by renting out their facilities to the public during the week.“It still looks as good as the day it was laid,” says Elliot, who estimates that the pitch could last for another eight years. “I’ve not heard the one about high costs before. But if that is one of the objections, then it makes the whole process even more ludicrous. Nobody is forcing anyone to have a 3G pitch. All we’re asking for is that clubs in League One and League Two have the opportunity to put one down. There is an investment and we had to borrow money to do it but the financial model that’s around it is unbelievable. It’s used seven days a week, all day every day.” Sutton’s Deacon dares to dream but Arsenal finally end FA Cup fairytale Twitter Pinterest Topics The Football Association’s chairman, Greg Clarke, guaranteed last week that all proceeds of the pending £600m sale of Wembley to Shahid Khan will be used to fund grassroots football, mentioning that “one in seven games was lost to the weather during the winter months and only one in three pitches in England was considered adequate to play on”. The FA Cup has permitted the use of artificial pitches since 2015 and a study last year found they provided “durable, safe, year-round playing surfaces, able to withstand intensive use and all kinds of weather”. Reuse this content Vanarama National League “There’s a huge lack of facilities across the country,” says Elliot, “and that’s why the FA is so keen to push more because it guarantees that [people] don’t have to look at the weather forecast or ring up to see if the game is on. The days of pitch inspections are gone or at least they should be.”Sutton’s chances of reaching Wembley for a fourth time (and first since they were beaten in the final of the 1980-81 FA Trophy final) rest on Sunday’s meeting with Boreham Wood, who are also part-timers and defeated Fylde on Thursday night. The new National League play-off system ensures the teams that finished second and third host semi-finals at home, with Tranmere set to face Ebbsfleet, who finished sixth, after their shootout victory over fifth-placed Aldershot.“We’ve tried to think of it as a win-win,” Elliot says. “We’ve had a brilliant season just to get to the play-offs as a part-time club. If we get promotion of course we’re going to take it and lay a new grass pitch. If we don’t, it’s not a problem is it? We’d have another go next year.” Share on Twitter features The Observer Sutton United’s National League play-off semi-final against Boreham Wood at Gander Green Lane sees the part-timers from south London attempt to round off a remarkable season by securing promotion to the Football League for the first time in their history. The only snag is that, under EFL regulations that ban artificial pitches, Sutton would not be allowed to begin next season in League Two and would instead face demotion to National League South if they did not replace their surface.“It’s not what we would like but that is what we will have to do. It’s as simple as that,” admits the Sutton chairman, Bruce Elliot, who estimates that a new hybrid grass pitch will cost around £300,000. “We’ve been through the wringer this season but we’ve failed dismally to convince the EFL that the question of artificial pitches should even be on their agenda.”Clubs in the EFL were invited to submit their view on the potential use of synthetic pitches at the start of the season, with the debate set to be continued at June’s AGM. Yet calls for another ballot have so far been resisted despite a tied vote on the issue in November 2014, while the Professional Footballers’ Association is among the staunch opponents having cited concerns about costs, increased likelihood of injuries and the “more direct” style of football artificial surfaces have been accused of promoting. Share on Messenger Facebook Say the words “plastic pitch” to supporters of a certain vintage and images of wildly bouncing balls and goalkeepers wearing tracksuit bottoms to avoid carpet burns naturally come flooding back. But while the first-generation artificial surfaces used by Luton, QPR, Preston and Oldham in the 1980s have long since been consigned to history the continuing debate over the suitability of modern 3G pitches will come to the fore on Sunday. Sutton’s Craig Eastmond tussles with Granit Xhaka of Arsenal during the sides’ FA Cup fifth round match at Gander Green Lane in 2017. Photograph: Tom Jenkins/The Guardian Share on LinkedIn Share on Pinterest Share via Email Sutton United Share on Facebook
Prem trio join race for Barcelona midfielder Denis Suarezby Ansser Sadiq10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveDenis Suarez is not short on suitors.The Barcelona midfielder, who is unhappy at what little playing time he has received, is being linked with a loan move in the transfer window.And Sport claims that three English clubs have an interest.West Ham, Everton and Watford are the teams mentioned.An earlier report in the BBC had suggested that Arsenal may also look at Suarez as a short term option, should they lose Aaron Ramsey this month.Sport also suggests Barca would prefer a permanent transfer with a fee higher than €10 million. TagsTransfersAbout the authorAnsser SadiqShare the loveHave your say
CAIRO- Egypt’s foreign minister acknowledged in comments published Wednesday that relations with Washington were in a “delicate” phase after it suspended some military aid in response to a July 3 coup.Nabil Fahmy said the US administration had overestimated the amount of leverage that its aid dollars bought it over the policies of the interim government installed by the army after it overthrew elected Islamist president Mohamed Morsi.“We are right now in a delicate phase reflecting turmoil in the relationship and whoever says otherwise is not speaking honestly,” Fahmy said in an interview with state-owned daily Al-Ahram. Fahmy said Washington was wrong to assume that its October 10 decision to suspend deliveries of major military hardware and cash assistance of $260 million would influence the interim government’s policies.He blamed the hiccough in relations on the dependence on US aid of the regime of Hosni Mubarak which was ousted in 2011 after three decades in power.“We chose the easy option and did not diversify our options… this led the US to wrongly believe that Egypt would always follow its policies and aims,” Fahmy said.
Rabat – After the International Astronomical Center (IAC) announced on Sunday, April 26, that Ramadan will start on Monday, May 6, in most Arab countries, Saudi moon observers also expect Ramadan, the ninth month of the Islamic lunar calendar, to begin on the same day in Saudi Arabia.On Saturday, April 13, the Saudi Supreme Court, however, called on Saudi citizens to begin keeping a close watch on Saturday, May 4, for the crescent moon signalling the beginning of the holy month of Ramadan, news agency SPA reported.The Supreme Court said in a statement that clouds had obstructed sight of the crescent moon on April 5, Rajab 29 in the Islamic Hijri calendar. The Supreme Court called on moon observes to also watch for the moon on Sunday, May 5, corresponding to Sha’baan 30, a possible day for the crescent moon to come out.Read also: Ramadan to Begin on May 5 in the US, UKMorocco, however, is most likely to begin fasting on Tuesday, May 7, after seeing the moon on Monday, May 6, according to astronomer Abdelaziz Kharbouch Al Ifrani. Muslims around the world observe the holy month of Ramadan by abstaining from eating and drinking from dawn to dusk.
On the markets at midmorning (ET):The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was up 20.61 points to 15,265.32, after 90 minutes of trading.In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 18.02 points to 21,622.73. The S&P 500 index was up 0.45 of a point to 2,474.28 and the Nasdaq composite index was up 0.85 of a point to 6,385.89The Canadian dollar was trading at 79.71 cents US, up from Wednesday’s average price of 79.40 cents US.The September crude contract was up 13 cents to US$47.45 per barrel and the August natural gas contract was up two cents to US$3.09 per mmBTU.The August gold contract was up $3.20 to US$1,245.20 an ounce and the September copper contract was up one cent to US$2.72 a pound.
TORONTO — Five things to watch for in the Canadian business world in the coming week:Rate hike decisionA cooling economy is dampening expectations that the Bank of Canada will hike the overnight rate on Wednesday. Both September inflation and August retail sales came in below analysts’ expectations on Friday, suggesting the BoC will hold steady after raising rates twice in a row.Weekly statsStatistics Canada releases the wholesale trade figures for August (Monday), data on immigration, ethnocultural diversity, housing and Aboriginal peoples (Wednesday), and data on payroll employment, earnings and hours for August (Thursday).Stranzl to break his silenceBrandon Stranzl, former CEO of Sears Canada, will speak to media on Monday regarding the liquidation of Sears Canada’s remaining stores. Stranzl had led an unsuccessful push to buy the retailer and turn it around, and the company’s leadership faced harsh criticism from laid-off employees over the size of retention bonuses offered to executives to see the liquidation process through.Let’s talk about something other than blind trusts, ok?After a week of bad headlines and intense criticism, federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau will deliver the fall economic update in the Commons on Tuesday. Morneau has been under fire since it was revealed that he had not placed his substantial personal holdings into a blind trust, a move he reversed on Friday, despite insisting the rules don’t require him to do so.EarningspaloozaSome of Canada’s most well-known companies will release earnings next week, including West Fraser Timber Co. Ltd. (Monday); CN Rail (Tuesday); Air Canada, New Gold Inc, Barrick Gold, Suncor Energy Inc., Western Energy Services Corp. and Goldcorp Inc. (Wednesday); Agnico Eagle Mines Ltd., Maple Leaf Foods Inc., First Quantum Minerals, Shaw Communications Inc., Husky Energy and Eldorado Gold Corp. (Thursday); and Precision Drilling Corp. (Friday).
The new national government, which was sworn in following the victory of the United National Party (UNP) at a parliamentary election last month, has also said China is currently its biggest investor as the nation has helped develop Sri Lanka, especially after the end of a 30-year civil war.“A lot of trade and cultural partnership existed in the past between Sri Lanka and China which has lasted for decades. We have developed a very serious link between China and Sri Lanka which has just kept growing. Now China is the largest investor here in Sri Lanka and also in time to come they will be the largest bilateral partner as far as trade, commerce and investment is concerned,” the minister said.The new government has also vowed to transform the country and make it technologically advanced in the coming years, and Ranawaka said that in order to do this, they hope to attract more foreign investors. The Government has said it will continue with the China-funded multi-billion-U.S. dollar mega port city project as part of plans to develop Colombo, the Xinhua Chinese news agency reported.Minister of Megapolis and Western Development Patali Champika Ranawaka told Xinhua that the government hopes to transform the country into a “smart and technologically advanced nation” in the coming five years and the port city project will be included in its development plans. “Once certain issues are addressed, then no one can challenge such a huge development project in the city of Colombo,” he said.“We are right now addressing the issues and we have asked the project organization to conduct a proper environment assessment and also we are addressing the legal and social issues. We are positive the project will continue,” the minister added. However, Ranawaka said the government is now looking into these aspects and hopes to continue with the project as part of its megapolis plan. The 1.4 billion-U.S. dollar project, which is funded by China Communications Construction Company Ltd. (CCCC), was suspended in March after concerns were raised over some aspects of the project. “We are focusing on transforming this country into a smart nation. The sole aim of this megapolis is to transform the western province into a big environmentally sustainable city. We will establish a new legal authority to do this,” he said.
Mark Schiefelbein / AP Jason Alden / Bloomberg The company’s legal troubles in the U.S. may also spill into other markets. “Government telecommunication infrastructure requirements are essentially locking out the Chinese supplier in critical growth markets,” noted Morningstar Research equity analyst Mark Cash in an email. “Additionally, telecom providers without government-imposed restrictions may start limiting their usage of Huawei equipment for their 5G network build-outs.”If there’s a Darth Vader in the minds of Chinese national security hawks in Washington worried about China’s rising tech power, it’s Ren. In China, though, he’s feted as a national hero, who rose from humble beginnings to the pinnacle of wealth and status in Chinese society.His grandfather was a master of curing ham in his village in Zhejiang province, which afforded Ren’s father the chance to become the village’s first university student, according to a 2001 essay by Ren about his upbringing, which was published on a website linked to the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.His father, Ren Moxun, was a Communist Youth League member, who later worked as a teacher and an accountant at a military factory, but who kept up his rebel fervour under the Kuomintang by selling revolutionary books. After moving to rural Guizhou province, he met his wife Cheng Yuanzhao and gave birth to Ren Zhengfei, the oldest of two sons and five daughters.The family lived on modest teaching salaries. In one of his speeches, he remembered how his mother read him the story of Hercules, but withheld the ending until he came home with a good report card.During the Great Leap Forward, a famine came to his home town after Communist Party industrialization and collectivization policies went off the rails. Ren recalled in his essay how his mother stuffed into his hand each morning a piece of corn pancake while asking about his homework. His good grades gained him entry to the Chongqing Institute of Civil Engineering and Architecture.After graduation, he worked in the civil engineering industry until 1974, when he joined the People Liberation Army’s Engineering Corps as a soldier, and worked on a chemical fibre base in Liaoyang. Huawei says he rose to become deputy director, but did not hold military rank. He does, however, often pepper his speeches with military references.“Our managers and experts need to act like generals, carefully examining maps and meticulously studying problems,” Ren said in a speech posted on a website for Huawei employees.Ren’s Communist Party credentials aren’t as deep as his father’s. He attended the 12th National Congress of the Communist Party in 1982, and once cited the party’s dogma of “a struggle that never ends” when defending the company’s tough work hours.People walk past an illuminated logo for Huawei in Beijing. Huawei struggled for market share with foreign companies using so-called “wolf culture” of aggressive salesmanship, which sometimes materialized in the form of Huawei employees flooding sales events with several times more salespeople than its competitors.The company ventured into international markets in the 2000s, with telecom equipment that was more affordable than products of competitors such as Cisco Systems Inc. Huawei later admitted to copying a small portion of router code from Cisco and agreed in a settlement to remove the tainted code.Ren since stepped up the company’s research and development. Of its 180,000 employees, about 80,000 are now involved in R&D, according to the company’s 2017 report, and the company has been known to recruit some of China’s top talent out of universities.The company has recently refocused on existing markets after the U.S. government called Huawei a national security threat, and cited concerns over its possible control of 5G technologies. Trump signed a bill banning government use of Chinese tech including Huawei’s, and has even contacted allies to get them to avoid using Huawei equipment.Collectively owned by its employees, the company is known for a culture of discipline, in which no one, Ren included, has their own driver or flies first class on the company dime. Lately, Ren has been warning employees against using fake numbers or profit to enhance performance. The company set up a data verification team in 2014 within the finance department, which was overseen by Ren’s daughter.In a recent speech posted on the Huawei employee network, however, he called for patience with critics, but rejected foreign intervention. “We will never give in or yield to pressure from outside,” he said. That maxim is going to be soon put to the test by the U.S. Department of Justice.— With files from Edwin Chan and Kevin HamlinBloomberg News At the sprawling Huawei Technologies Co. campus in Shenzhen, the food court’s walls are emblazoned with quotes from the company’s billionaire founder and CEO Ren Zhengfei. Then there’s the research lab that resembles the White House in Washington. Perhaps most curious, though, are the three black swans paddling around a lake.For Ren, a former People’s Liberation Army soldier turned telecom tycoon, the elegant birds are meant as a reminder to avoid complacency and prepare for unexpected crisis. That pretty much sums up the state of affairs at Huawei, whose chief financial officer, Meng Wanzhou, who’s also Ren’s daughter, is in custody in Canada and faces extradition to the U.S. on charges of conspiracy to defraud banks and violate sanctions on Iran.The arrest places Huawei in the cross-hairs of an escalating technology rivalry between China and the U.S., which views the company, a critical global supplier of mobile network equipment, as a potential national security risk. Hardliners in Donald Trump’s administration are especially keen to prevent Huawei from supplying wireless carriers as they upgrade to 5G, a next-generation technology expected to accelerate the shift to internet-connected devices and self-driving cars.China accuses Canada of violating bilateral agreement in Huawei arrestB.C.’s trade trip to China cancelled over Huawei arrest, Canada warned it could face ‘grave consequences’Huawei arrest puts focus on Chinese company’s relationship with Canadian telecomsRen is a legendary figure in the Chinese business world. He survived Mao Zedong’s great famine and went on to build a telecom giant with $92 billion in revenue that strikes fear among some policymakers in the West. Huawei is the No. 1 smartphone maker in China, and this year eclipsed Apple to become the second-biggest maker globally, according to research firm IDC. Though it has a low profile compared with China’s Internet giants, Huawei’s revenue last year was more than Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., Tencent Holdings Ltd. and Baidu Inc. combined. About half its revenue now comes from abroad, led by Europe, the Middle East and Africa.The arrest and prosecution of Meng in U.S. courts comes amid a far bigger U.S.-China struggle for technology dominance in the decades ahead — and could have huge and potentially severe consequences for Huawei. Ren declined an interview request from Bloomberg News.“It gives Trump a bargaining chip,” said George Magnus, an economist at Oxford University’s China Centre. “She’s the daughter of the CEO, himself a former PLA officer, and Huawei’s alleged dealings with Iran are just the latest in a string of concerns.”An outright ban on buying American technology and components, should it come to that, would deal Huawei a crushing blow. Earlier this year, the Trump administration imposed just such a penalty on ZTE Corp., also a Chinese telecom, and threatened its very survival before backing down. Both Huawei and ZTE are banned from most U.S. government procurement work.A full-blown, commercial ban in the U.S. would apply not only to hardware components, but would also cut off access to the software and patents of U.S. companies, Edison Lee and Timothy Chau, analysts with Jefferies Securities, wrote in a report. “If Huawei cannot license Android from Google, or Qualcomm’s patents in 4G and 5G radio access technology, it will not be able to build smartphones or 4G/5G base stations,” they note.Ren Zhengfei He didn’t become a Communist Party member in the PLA until late in his military career. However, a 2012 House permanent Select Committee on Intelligence report on Huawei asked why a private company had a Communist Party Committee, which has become common among China’s internet giants.Ren retired from the army in 1983, and joined his first wife to work at a Shenzhen company involved in the city’s special economic zone. It was around then that he had to sell off everything to pay a debt related to a business partner, and lost his job at Shenzhen Nanyou Group, as well as his first marriage, according to “Ren Zhengfei and Huawei” by author Li Hongwen.After a period of sleepless nights while living with family members, Ren saw an opportunity. When China began its economic opening under Deng Xiaoping, the telephone penetration rate was lower than the average rate in Africa, or 120th in the world. He founded Huawei with four partners in 1987 with 21,000 yuan in initial working capital, just above the minimum threshold required under Shenzhen rules.Huawei started out as a trader of telecom equipment, but the company’s technicians studied up on switchboards and were soon making their own. Workers put in long hours, in Shenzhen’s swampy heat with only ceiling fans. Ren kept up morale with subtle gestures, like offering pigtail soup to workers putting in overtime.The company became known for its “mattress culture” in which workers would pass out on office mattresses from exhaustion. In 2006, a 25-year-old worker Hu Xinyu, who had made a habit of working into the wee hours and then sleeping at the office, died of viral encephalitis. Some Huawei employees subsequently committed suicide. The deaths triggered a revision of the company policy on overtime, and the creation of a chief health and safety officer role.It wasn’t the only move Ren made to stabilize morale. He used to pay his workers only half their salaries on payday, but eventually decided to convert the other half of employee salaries and bonuses into shares. The company’s 2017 report shows that he has a 1.4 percent stake, giving him a net worth of $2 billion.Ren paid workers half their salaries on payday, but decided to convert the other half of salaries and bonuses into shares
US construction spending posts smallest gain in 5 months; housing expands by Martin Crutsinger, The Associated Press Posted Aug 3, 2015 8:06 am MDT Last Updated Aug 3, 2015 at 9:00 am MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email WASHINGTON – U.S. construction spending increased in June by the smallest amount in five months as a big drop in nonresidential building activity offset a third straight increase in home building.The Commerce Department says construction spending edged up a slight 0.1 per cent in June following a 1.8 per cent increase in May and a 3.8 per cent rise in April. Even with the June slowdown, construction spending advanced to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $1.06 trillion, the best pace in seven years.Residential construction was up 0.4 per cent. But nonresidential building slipped 1.3 per cent in June, with the category that covers shopping centres falling 4.4 per cent. Spending on government building projects was up 1.6 per cent as a solid increase at the state and local levels offset a drop in federal projects.
by The Canadian Press Posted Jul 29, 2016 7:18 am MDT Last Updated Jul 29, 2016 at 8:00 am MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email CALGARY – Imperial Oil had a $181-million loss in its second quarter, mostly due to the wildfires that raged through northern Alberta in May, sparking a massive evacuation and curtailing oilsands production.The Calgary-based company (TSX:IMO) says the wildfires accounted for $170 million of the reduction in its net income from last year’s second quarter, when the company was profitable.It says the wildfires reduced its production by 60,000 barrels per day. Excluding the wildfires, it estimates production would have increased by 45,000 barrels per day or 13 per cent.Imperial’s loss amounted to 21 cents per share and compared with a year-earlier profit of 14 cents per share or $120 million.Total revenue also declined, falling by 14.4 per cent or nearly a billion dollars to $6.25 billion.In addition to the wildfires, Imperial’s operations felt the impact of planned maintenance at its Kearl and Syncrude oilsands operations, and its Strathcona refinery east of Edmonton and Nanticoke refinery on the shore of Lake Erie in Ontario.“Although our facilities were not damaged by the wildfires, operationally both Kearl and Syncrude were significantly impacted,” Rich Kruger, Imperial’s chairman, president and CEO, said in a statement.“Syncrude operations were halted in early May, the first complete shutdown in the site’s nearly 40-year history, with a staged restart of operations in mid-June.”Syncrude is one of the world’s oldest oilsands operations — owned by a partnership that includes Suncor Energy (TSX:SU) and Imperial Oil (TSX:IMO). Imperial Oil posts $181M loss tied to Alberta wildfires, revenue falls 14%
Belarussian champions Meshkov Brest extended contracts with six members of the team. Management of the ambitious team who reached the Preliminary Round of the VELUX EHF Champions League this season, have faith in capabilites of domestic, but also foreign players in current roster. Croatian coach Željko Babić will work until 2017 with two Serbian stars, line-player Rastko Stojković and left back Nikola Manojlović, who have a huge international experience of playing in the teams like Vive Tauron Kielce, HSG Nordhorn or Rhein Neckar Lowen, FA Goppingen…Besides the Serbs, new two-years contracts were signed by four domestic players – Maxim Babichev (line player), Dimitry Nikulenkau (playmaker), Dzainis Rutenka (right wing) and Siahey Shylovic (right back). Belarus handballhandball transfersHC Meshkov BrestNikola ManojlovicRastko Stojkovic ← Previous Story Who is the WORLD BEST COACH in Women’s Handball 2014? Next Story → HCM Baia Mare appoint Tone Tiselj as new head-coach!
Tunisia got a new coach with strong international profile. The best African squad appointed Spanish coach Toni Gerona as leader of project Tokyo 2020. Gerona a lot of success on the bench of the most powerful non-European team El Jaish Sports Club in last two seasonsGerona a lot of success on the bench of the most powerful non-European team El Jaish Sports Club in last two seasons. Spaniard won almost all possible trophies on the helm of “Army” club in Doha, but decision of authorities to unite El Jaish and Lekhwya into one team (Duhail) forced him to leave Qatar and take another challenge in proffesional career.Gerona’s first step on his Olympic way to Tokyo 2020 will be African Championship in Gabon in January 2018. Toni Gerona ← Previous Story VESZPREM: Vranjes to take 19 players to Rogla Next Story → Algeria 2017: The “BIG FOUR” for the medals
Palestinians search destroyed cars in Rafah’s district of Shawkah in the southern Gaza Strip Source: AP/Press Association ImagesA FRAGILE CEASEFIRE in Gaza pushes into a second day today as Israeli and Palestinian delegations prepared for crunch talks in Cairo to try to extend the 72-hour truce.The ceasefire, which came into effect yesterday and carried past midnight into today, has brought relief to millions on both sides after one month of fighting killed 1,875 Palestinians and 67 people in Israel.Cairo talksIsraeli and Palestinian delegations are now set for what are expected to be tough talks aimed at securing a permanent ceasefire after the three-day window closes.Officials on both sides confirmed sending small teams to the Egyptian capital, but they bring conflicting demands and face an uphill diplomatic battle ahead.The Palestinians insist Israel end its eight-year blockade of Gaza and open border crossings, while Israel wants Gaza fully demilitarised.But after the longest period of quiet since fighting began, Palestinian foreign minister Riyad al-Maliki said he expected “the ceasefire to expand into another 72 hours and beyond”. A drawing is seen on the wall in the house of Abu Louli family, who say was left by Israeli soldiers in Rafah’s district of Shawkah in the southern Gaza Strip Source: AP/Press Association ImagesThe United States is set to participate in the Cairo talks.“We are determining at what level and in what capacity and when,” US State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki told reporters in Washington.US Secretary of State John Kerry, in a BBC interview, called for a sustained ceasefire but stressed that the crucial wider issues will need to be addressed.How are we going to make peace? How are we going to eliminate these rockets? How are we going to demilitarise and move towards a different future?In Gaza City, people came out in numbers on Tuesday afternoon, children played on the street and the beach, and some shops reopened for the first time in days.Scenes of devastationOthers ventured home for the first time only to witness scenes of devastation.“What am I going to tell my wife and children? I don’t want them to see this! They will go crazy,” said Khayri Hasan al-Masri, a father of three who returned to his heavily damaged home in Beit Hanun in the north after fleeing when Israel’s ground offensive began on July 17.At a bullet-riddled girls’ school, an Israeli flag and an anti-Hamas slogan had been etched on the wall of a classroom, and discarded ration packs and tuna cans labelled in Hebrew littered the floor.Relief but scepticism in southern Israel Palestinian children play in a public park during a temporary Hamas and Israel cease fire in Gaza City Source: AP/Press Association ImagesIsrael’s security cabinet convened to discuss efforts to secure a long-term ceasefire deal, but broke up without any public statement.In southern Israel, there was relief but scepticism.“I never trust Hamas,” said Orly Doron, an Israeli mother living in a kibbutz on the Gaza border that has been battered by rocket fire.We had three or four ceasefires during this war; we all saw they weren’t kept.It is the second time in four days the two sides had agreed to observe a 72-hour humanitarian truce. The last attempt on August 1 — brokered by Washington and the UN — was shattered within just 90 minutes.This time Israel has withdrawn its troops, ending the ground operation aimed at destroying tunnels Gaza militants use to attack its territory.Army spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Peter Lerner said troops would respond to any truce violations. A Palestinian man cleans up the room of his sisters house as bullet casings are found left by Israeli soldiers on the floor Source: AP/Press Association ImagesIsraeli brigadier general Guy Goldstein, deputy head of the unit responsible for civilian affairs in the Palestinian territories, said more than 250 trucks of supplies crossed into Gaza on Tuesday.“We transferred food, animal feed, water, medicines, medical supplies, mattresses, blankets,” he said.We let out people with dual nationality and let in medical teams… dozens of people.He said that four power lines leading into Gaza were repaired and two more should be fixed by morning.The territory’s only power plant was shelled during the conflict, leading to a blackout.Up to $6bn worth of damage in Gaza Source: AP/Press Association ImagesThe ceasefire, announced by Egypt late on Monday, is the longest lull since fighting began.The Palestinian health ministry said 1,875 Palestinians had been killed during the conflict, including 430 children, and said 9,567 people had been wounded, including 2,878 children.In the West Bank city of Ramallah, deputy economy minister Taysir Amro said the 29-day war had caused total damage of up to $6 billion dollars (4.5 billion euros).Some of the worst devastation is near the southern Gaza city of Rafah, which was flattened in a massive Israeli assault that began on Friday.The United States and the United Nations have welcomed the truce, saying the onus was on Hamas to uphold its end of the deal.CriticismIsrael has been subject to increasingly harsh criticism over the high number of civilian casualties during its military operation launched on July 8 to counter rocket fire from Gaza.A British parliamentary committee said today that excessive Israeli restrictions on Palestinian territories cannot be justified on the grounds they protect the Jewish state.The Israeli army says it destroyed 32 cross-border tunnels, struck nearly 4,800 targets and killed 900 Palestinian “terrorists”.“We expect that they still have about 3,000 rockets left. This is a challenge we have to address,” Lerner said.Read: Protesters hold Israel boycott ‘die-ins’ at several Dublin stores>Read: Amnesty to USA: Stop sending jet fuel to Israeli military>
Principal of Think Tax, and director of strategy at the Hellenic Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (HACCI), Anastasios Koutsikos, has been in the numbers game for 20 years, his thirst for all things financial is still powerfully. “The tax legislation is complex and tricky. Professional advice is paramount,” he said, adding “you need to have a good relationship with your accountant”. – Anastasios Koutsikos from Think Tax“I’ve been very much into accounting and economics…I love it, I enjoy it, accounting offers so much more than just the standard impression that may exist out there,” he told Neos Kosmos. Koutsikos, an accountant with a bachelor of business (majoring in accounting) from Victoria’s Monash University, has been the principal of CPA accountants firm Think Tax, in Melbourne, for eight years now. He said while the company does compliance work-anything associated with tax-there is a focus on business consultation. “We see ourselves as business partners helping our clients to create wealth and we look at the overall wealth position of a client and we work together in order to achieve their goals and their dreams and the compliance work effectively become a by product of those pursuits,” he said.Koutsikos said tax legislation is not user friendly and for all new and existing business professional advisers are necessary. “The tax legislation is complex and tricky. Professional advice is paramount,” he said, adding “you need to have a good relationship with your accountant”. After working in auditing, public practice and in industry, Koutsikos is enjoying being his own boss back in the public practice sector. “It does give me a bit of independence running my own business, I still need to put in the hours but I put in the hours when I choose; this is the Greek thing coming out,” he jokes. “I also enjoy the challenge of growing something from nothing, assisting start-up clients to get up and going in business and taking pride in their success”. Koutsikos said in running a business it is vital to identify your strengths and weaknesses. “It’s a journey, you got to respond to what the economic climate offers you at the time,” he said. His current focus is on making HACCI relevant and attracting the contemporary Greek business person emerging through the network of businesses in Australia. Asked to define the contemporary Greek business person, Koutsikos said he considers them to be educated, sophisticated, tech savvy and capable of making a real contribution to Australia. Resilience, fortitude, flair and exuberance are the key characteristics to the Greek businessperson’s identity. “There’s an inner strength that I see in Greek business people; they want to be successful, they want to contribute to the community, they want to be independent, and they’re very proud to be running their own show”. As the Director of Strategy at HACCI, Koutsikos said he bridges networks between organisations and creates affiliations, synergies and relationships. “I think if we’re active, prominent and we’re engaging thought and debate and providing a forum for our members to be able to engage in peer to peer networks -with local or federal government and with our community groups- then I think we’d be doing our job,” he said. Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram
Stay on target The wreckage site of a steamer has been discovered 103 years after it sank in Lake Superior off Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.The Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society (GLSHS) found the wreckage of the composite steamer S.R. Kirby, which sank in May 8, 1916 near Eagle Harbor, Mich. after it was struck by a massive wave.According to the Society, the 294-foot-long S.R. Kirby was “a relatively unusual ship.” It was constructed in 1890 using an iron framework, with a wooden hull.The Kirby sank in May 1916. Off the 22-man crew, only two survived. (Photo Credit: Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society)The weather had been calm the day before Kirby left Ashland, Wisconsin in 1916, towing a 352-foot-long steel barge loaded with iron ore and headed for Cleveland, Ohio. But a fierce northwest gale, with winds up to 76 mph, descended on the lake and battered the two ships as they plowed-on toward the Keweenaw, according to the GLSHS.The Kirby was struck by a massive wave, broke up, and quickly sank to the bottom of the lake.Of the 22-man crew, only two were rescued. The captain’s dog “Tige” was also later rescued by the Eagle Harbor Coast Guard crew.“This is an interesting ship, and a pretty sad story,” GLSHS Executive Director Bruce Lynn said in a press release. “Historical accounts tell us that the Kirby was heavily overloaded, and perhaps improperly loaded, when she departed Ashland. If this is true, she didn’t have much of a chance in such a storm.”The 294-foot-long S.R. Kirby was constructed using an iron framework, with a wooden hull. (Poto Credit: Courtesy of the Fr. Edward J. Dowling, S.J. Marine Historical Collection, University of Detroit Mercy)The wreckage was actually spotted last year when the Shipwreck Society was searching the area.“We weren’t certain that it was a shipwreck, but were able to take a closer look this year. We thought it might have been the Kirby”, the Shipwreck Society’s Director of Marine Operations, Darryl Ertel Jr., said.Ertel and his team used the Shipwreck Society’s ROV (Remotely Operated Vehicle) to positively identify the vessel, by the nature of the wreckage, as being that of the Kirby.Founded in 1978, the Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society owns and operates the professional underwater research vessel R.V. David Boyd to research and document historic shipwrecks of Lake Superior. The Society’s Underwater Research team uses side-scan sonar to analyze the lake bottom and identify submerged wrecks.More on Geek.com:Mysterious, 500-Year-Old Shipwreck Found in Baltic Sea Eerie Shipwreck Unearthed by Shifting Sands in North CarolinaResearchers ‘Accidentally’ Discover 19-Century Shipwreck Watch: Archaeologists Explore 170-Year-Old Shipwreck ‘Frozen in Time’‘Titanic Is Deteriorating’: New Images From Dive Reveal Deca…
Shewman: You know, it can come out in different ways. People feeling more irritable. People feeling like unsettled, uncomfortable, kind of a sense that things just don’t seem right. Like I said, insomnia — to add to the Alaska daylight and our recent heat wave — the insomnia that comes from this, again, this sense of being under attack, of feeling unsafe, of feeling these threats. And the threats are real, I mean we have to be honest, the threats to people’s livelihoods, to their financial security. Those threats create fear for people. Grove: My sense of it is that you can’t just tell people it’s just going to be OK, everything’s going to work out fine, because it might not, right? So what do you tell people? Grove: Hi, Julie. Shewman: You can help folks to realize, to step back and to see that they do have options. They may not be great options. They may not be the options they had planned for themselves, but a lot of folks feeling like, “I’m going to lose my job, and what is that going to mean, and how will I take care of my family?” (it’s) helping them to kind of start exploring options. What kinds of things can we start looking at? Also realizing, “Yes, you know, if these cuts go through, there are going to be significant changes in our state, but it’s not happening tomorrow. So kind of helping to take off the time pressure and say, “You have time to make adjustments to these changes,” and again, really opening people’s eyes up to the options that they might have. Grove: There’s a lot going on. There’s a lot of different reasons for people to be anxious about things, and this is pretty specific, but what do you tell somebody who’s specifically worried about losing their job, they don’t know if that’s going to happen or not and they’re just wondering about what their future is going to be? Shewman: Absolutely. We’ve been hearing about this across the board, therapists that I work with, this kind of pervasive fear, and that fear, that perceived threat that people are feeling across the political continuum, comes across as anxiety, stress, trouble sleeping, all kinds of things, and we’re all definitely seen that in our practices. Grove: You’ll be fine. Obviously we don’t want to get too specific, but in general are you hearing about this stuff from the people that you talk to? Grove: What is this? Where does this come from? Grove: I’m doing OK. Have you ever been a therapist for thousands of people on the radio all at once? Grove: You mentioned some of these things, but how does this express itself? Shewman: The worst thing you can tell somebody who’s upset is, “Well calm down or relax,” and that message doesn’t come through. What you can tell people, if you’re living with someone or you have friends who are particularly upset or if you’re struggling with it, too, there are a lot of different things you can do. The first thing I would recommend is to notice what’s really stirring your fears. What is it that keeps that fire stoked, and for a lot of people it’s reading unbalanced media, it is social media, Facebook, those kinds of things, seeing the memes that come across. If that’s what’s stoking your fear and keeping that heightened sense of alert, I really recommend that people step back to take a break from social media, take a break from reading the news, looking for friends to talk to, connecting with people, with real people. Shewman: This will be a first. Speaking of anxiety… Simply put, the uncertainty over state politics and the cuts is getting to people. With Alaska headed toward massive cuts to its university system, social services and other state-funded programs, many Alaskans are expressing frustration, sadness and anxiety. Alaska Public Media’s Casey Grove spoke with licensed professional counselor Julie Shewman for advice on dealing with the stress. Shewman: When we have a perception of threat, that creates stress, and so for any of us, a little bit of stress is OK, That’s the stress that produces the chemicals in our brain that kind of primes us to do something, prime us to action. A little bit of stress, little bit of anxiety, is OK. It helps us with a job interview for instance. When it becomes overwhelming, we lose that ability to be in our front brain, our prefrontal cortex, we lose that ability and that part of our brain goes offline, and we’re into our limbic brain, our emotional brain. And then if the threat’s big enough, we actually go into our reptile brain, which the survival brain: fight (or) flea. What do I do to keep myself safe? How do I survive this? And so if the threats seem big enough, we end up in that part of the brain. Shewman: Hi there. How are you doing Casey?
Apple and IBM announced a deal on Tuesday to release over 100 new exclusive mobile applications for the corporate world to target retail, healthcare, banking, travel, transportation and telecommunication sector.Following the announcement of the deal, IBM shares rose 1.9 percent, while Apple shares surged 1.3 percent.IBM has attempted to shift to software sector as the company hopes to earn over half of its profit in 2015 through software sales.”We wanted to focus on creating an absolutely irresistible workflow and processes and a design of apps that can be used by every user in the organization,” Reuters quoted Bridget van Kralingen, IBM’s senior vice president of global business, at Apple headquarters in Cupertino, California.”We wanted to remove some of the existing barriers of mobile in enterprise,” she added, by relating the worries of chief information officers about security issues of cloud computing systems among smart phones.IBM has also planned to come up with wireless cloud computing services for Apple devices.”This deal is a very targeted attempt by Apple with the help from IBM to focus on the enterprise, corporate market which has really been the main business of Blackberry,” chief investment officer, Tim Ghriskey from Solaris Group in New York told Reuters.IBM will sell Apple devices loaded with exclusive business apps for the corporate group. Moreover, the company will also launch Apple Care service centres at enterprise level, besides offering special packages for devices.In 1985, Steve Jobs had said in an interview that the world would enter the dark ages, if IBM becomes successful.Moreover, Andy Hertzfeld, an American computer scientist in 2009 posted the photograph of Jobs, clicked in 1983, revealing his rebellious spirit for IBM.As always a picture is better than anything else, and as always @gruber said it better, from https://t.co/ItYnJ40o8D pic.twitter.com/IS8rDZOMPN— Thomas Menguy (@tmenguy) July 16, 2014Three decades later, the former rivals have agreed on an exclusive partnership for the first time in history.