PPCC Launches Vendors Register

first_imgAuthorities at the Public Procurement and Concessions Commission (PPCC) in collaboration with partners on May 27 officially launched the “Vendors Register.” The Vendors Register is an initiative of the PPCC developed for five primary reasons under the theme, “Enhancing Efficiency and Participation of Businesses in Public Procurement.”Based on the theme, the five reasons developed are to enhance efficiency in public procurement; increase the level of participation of businesses and companies in public tenders; facilitate the implementation of the Small Business Act legislated to promote the growth of Liberian-owned businesses; formalize the informal sector of the economy; and improve tax compliance and revenue generation.Prof. Willie Bellie Jr., PPCC Chairman of the Board of Commissioners said, only business and companies listed in the Vendors Register will be eligible to participate in public procurement effective fiscal year 2015/2016, beginning July 1 this year.PPCC Chief Executive Officer, James Dorbor Jallah, among other things, explained that, to enhance efficiency in public procurement implies that once the Vendors Register has been populated through the registration process, PPCC will know all capable supplies for any given procurement contract package and be in the position to advise all procuring entities to utilize more time, and const-efficient procurement methods thereby resulting in shorter procurement cycles and cost- saving to the government.“This time efficiency will result in timely delivery of much needed services and development projects thereby accelerating Liberia’s development through which the cost-savings will provide a space for increased value for money,” said Mr. Jallah.According to him, another benefit of the Vendors Register is to ensure that all businesses, irrespective of their geographical location, will have a fair chance of participation in government tenders.This he said, will depend on the method of procurement utilized for a particular contract package, procuring entities will be required to invite all known vendors. This increase in participation will guarantee greater value for money thereby protecting the public’s interest. He said, the Small Business Act (SBA) has been promulgated to promote the growth of Liberian-owned businesses. “It requires that at least 25 percent of all government procurement contracts be awarded to Liberian-owned businesses. It further requires that a minimum of 5 percent of those contracts be awarded to Liberian women-owned businesses,”This law, Mr. Jallah said defines Liberian-owned businesses as one of which Liberians own majority shares, and for which Liberians are primary signatories to the business’ bank accounts.The Vendors Register will collect pertinent information for all businesses operating in Liberia thereby allowing the PPCC to determine the businesses that are eligible to benefit from the SBA.Various speakers including stakeholders and business representatives expressed gratitude for the launch and promised to cooperate with the PPCC in its implementation across the country. The launch, which was held yesterday at the Monrovia City Hall by the Minister of Commerce, Axel M. Addy, was attended by several high profile individuals including the representatives from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), United Nations Development Program (UNDP), Dee Maxwell Kemayah, president Liberia Business Association, Dewitt von Ballmoos, Director-general, National Social Security and Welfare Corporation (NASSCORP), among others. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

AFC is in a sad political shape – Jagdeo

first_img…to have to prove it is not deadThe announcement by Alliance For Change (AFC) leaders that the party intends to go to the local polls alone to test its strength is being viewed by Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo, as a symptom of the minority party’s political shape, according to him, a sad one.Jagdeo addressed the issue during a recent press conference where the former President expressed suspicion that both the AFC and its A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) partner are aware of the party’s evaporating support at the grass roots. It is a point, Jagdeo noted, that his party and the coalition could agree on.“Imagine the leaders of the AFC said they have to prove to APNU and Guyana that they are not dead… I suspect that in the APNU circle, they have formed the same impression that we (People’s Progressive Party) have formed – that AFC is dead on the ground as you have seen,” Jagdeo observed.In addition, Jagdeo noted that there are efforts to create an impression that the AFC is separate from the majority APNU; when in fact, he said, the AFC themselves are culpable.“In trying to create this impression that they’re different, they’re saying to people that the APNU group in Government is the corrupt group. They are not. They’ve started spreading that on the ground; that the AFC people have been struggling internally within the Government to fight against corruption but the APNU people are dominating them. They’ve started in Berbice again saying ‘oh they were opposed to the closure of the sugar industry’ which is not substantiated by facts,” he posited.According to the Opposition Leader, the fact that the AFC is not claiming responsibility for the corruption taking place under the coalition Administration is laughable, when the performance of several portfolios are considered.“We have them defending the closure vociferously, even more than the APNU people and it was Nagamootoo who took that message of closure, long before the decision had been made to close Rose Hall estate.”In fact, Jagdeo asserted that Nagamootoo does very little but “live off taxpayers”. He pointed to the Agriculture Ministry and noted that the Ministry has, since the coalition took over, cut millions from the Budget; sums that would have been used for drainage, irrigation and construction of roads to the market.In addition, Jagdeo referenced the increases in water and land charges from $3500 per acre annually to $15,000. This is not to mention the thousands of sugar workers who have been dismissed from their employment as a result of Government’s downsizing of the industry. Nor was Jagdeo impressed by the handling of the natural resources and business portfolios – both of which are run by AFC Ministers.“(Natural Resources Minister Raphael) Trotman, who is the leader of the AFC… said we did not receive the US$18 million signing bonus. He was the one who led the renegotiation of this contract that the whole country has concluded now is stacked mainly in the favour of ExxonMobil and not in the favour of Guyanese… under performance,” he maintained.“(Public Security Minister) Khemraj Ramjattan, another leader of the AFC, is totally lost in fighting crime. He gives excuses, he whips out a series of statistics, showing some reduction in crime and I really believe the statistics now are fudged, when you compare that with the reality of what’s happening.”On Sunday last, the AFC announced that they will be contesting the Local Government Elections (LGE) on November 12, separate from APNU. This decision was reached following the inconclusive negotiations with APNU, the party had stated.At the same time, it had maintained that this decision only applies for the 2018 LGE and does not affect the APNU/AFC coalition Government, nor does it, change the AFC’s position on coalition politics at the national level. At a press conference following this announcement, Trotman had struck a matter of fact tone. In fact, Trotman claimed the decision was made since last year.“Since last year we decided that we were going to contest the elections independently and we spoke to APNU about the matter. There were little points on which we were able to come to an agreement on. At the national level, it was easy to say 60/40, but LGE is different and it wasn’t easy coming with that same share to the table. Both sides sought to find common ground, but it didn’t materialise because of the particulars… but we still remain cordial on the matter,” he said.“Going independently will refresh and strengthen the coalition for 2020, so that the people will get the best of both parties. Being in Government sometimes makes you complacent and you lose touch with the people and the coalition needs to be refreshed. This will augur well for us. We expect to be in competition with each other, but in battle with the PPP,” he had added.last_img read more

ExxonMobil begins pumping oil

first_img…December 20 named “National Petroleum Day”United States oil giant ExxonMobil has commenced production of Guyana’s oil in the Stabroek Block, where 14 discoveries of crude in commercial quantities have been made since 2015. “ExxonMobil [on Friday] announced that oil production has started from the Liza field offshore Guyana ahead of schedule and less than five years after the first discovery of hydrocarbons, which is well ahead of the industry average for deepwater developments,” a statement from the company revealed.It was noted that production from the first phase of the Liza field, located in the 6.6 million acres Stabroek Block, is expected to reach full capacity of 120,000 barrels of oil per day in the coming months, and the first cargo is set to be sold within several weeks.Only in September, the Liza Destiny floating production, storage and offloading vessel (FPSO) arrived in Guyana’s waters. The vessel is a significant component of the Liza Phase One Development, which involves four undersea drill centres with 17 production wells. Besides its production capacity of 120,000 barrels of oil per day, it also has an overall storage volume of 1.6 million barrels.During normal operations, there will be at least 80 persons living and working onboard the vessel.With the 120,000 barrels expected daily from production in the Liza Phase One Development, it is estimated that Guyana will earn some US$300 million annually.ExxonMobil had previously said there is potential for at least five FPSO vessels in the Stabroek Block, producing more than 750,000 barrels of oil per day by 2025. Liza Phase Two Development is expected to start-up by mid-2022. It had been reported that the project would use the Liza Unity FPSO to produce up to 220,000 barrels per day.With Hess Guyana Exploration Ltd holding 30 per cent interest in the Stabroek Block, ExxonMobil’s affiliate, Esso Exploration and Production Guyana Limited (EEPGL) has 45 per cent interest and is also the operator of the 6.6 million acres block while CNOOC Petroleum Guyana Limited, a wholly-owned subsidiary of China’s state-owned CNOOC Limited, holds the remaining 25 per cent interest.Meanwhile, President David Granger has issued a proclamation to declare December 20 as ‘National Petroleum Day‘.According to the Head of State in a release from the Ministry of the Presidency late Friday evening, the proclamation will remind Guyanese of their duty to protect the country’s patrimony and to ensure the sustainable management of finite hydrocarbon resources.“…three months ahead of the original schedule, Guyana has become a petroleum-producing state,” he declared.President Granger noted that oil production will be a transformative process in the country’s economic development. The petroleum sector, he added, will stimulate increased employment and expand services.The Head of State went on to outline that the coalition Government will unveil a “Decade of Development, 2020-2029” aimed at ensuring that petroleum resources will be utilised to provide the “good life” for all.“The ‘Decade’ is a ten-year plan to intensify development and improve citizens’ quality of life. Every Guyanese will benefit from petroleum production. No one will be left behind,” he asserted.The President continued that the coalition Government has taken steps to safeguard the national interest. This includes setting up the Department of Energy to manage the country’s hydrocarbon resources. The Department, he noted, is seeking the best advice, including international best practices as it builds the institutional, legislative and regulatory capability to manage this sector effectively and efficiently.Another step highlighted by the President is the passage of the Natural Resource Fund Act 2019 in the National Assembly back in January this year. He pointed out that the “Act” provides for ensuring that the country’s resource wealth “…benefits both current and future generations…”, and that it incorporates oversight, accounting, reporting and auditing mechanisms to promote prudent, transparent and accountable management of oil revenues.“Guyanese, I assure that your Government will manage petroleum revenues prudently to ensure fiscal discipline, financial sector stability, sustainable levels of public debt and low inflation. Withdrawals from the ‘Fund’ will follow a balanced approach, prioritising investment in public education, public health, public infrastructure, public security, social protection and other social services and will support private sector development,” the Head of State posited.Further, President Granger stated that petroleum production has brought the prospects of a higher quality of life closer to Guyanese households and neighbourhoods. He added that it is a momentous event that should be commemorated for perpetuity.“Guyana’s future is brighter with the beginning of ‘first oil’. The ‘good life’ for everyone beckons. Let us work together to build a happy and prosperous country for the present and future generations,” the President stressed.ExxonMobil signed its contract with Guyana in 1999 under the People’s Progressive Party Government.In 2015, the oil giant announced a significant oil discovery on the Stabroek Block, located approximately 120 miles offshore Guyana. The well encountered more than 295 feet (90 metres) of high-quality oil-bearing sandstone reservoirs.On May 8, 2015, days prior to General and Regional Elections, the then Government – PPP/C – had announced that ExxonMobil discovered hydrocarbons offshore Guyana while drilling the Liza-1 exploration well at the Stabroek Block. However, now coalition Government, which was in Opposition at the time, had said that the PPP’s announcement was a mere elections gimmick.last_img read more

North Peace Leisure Pool closed for part of Easter long weekend

first_imgThe closure will run Thursday April 2, 2015 at 6:00 p.m. – Saturday April 4, 2015 at 1:00 p.m.The closure is due to minor leaks, which requires complete silence for the contractor to locate, according to Director of Facilities and Grounds Craig Stanley.“Unfortunately, due to the need for silence during these operations, we cannot allow the public to access the other amenities in the building,” writes Stanley. “We will have the work done as quickly as possible to get everyone back into the pool.”- Advertisement -Registration for swimming lessons and other activities will remain available during the time of closure – but city is sending a reminder that registration is not available on Friday April 3, 2015 as part of the statutory holiday.last_img

FIFA orders South Africa to replay Senegal WC qualifier

first_imgLamptey was initially suspended for three months by African football’s ruling body CAF for awarding a penalty for a non-existant handball”, with FIFA handing down the life ban in March.News of the rematch comes as a boost for Senegal, who are placed third, one point behind Cape Verde and Burkina Faso in African zone qualifying Group D, with two games to go.Only the group winners secure a ticket to the 2018 finals in Russia.FIFA explained the decision to replay the game had come after sport’s highest court CAS had confirmed “the lifetime ban of match referee, Joseph Lamptey, for match manipulation, the ruling imposed by the FIFA Disciplinary and Appeal Committees”.The statement added: “The match will be replayed within the November 2017 international window, with the exact date to be confirmed in due course.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000South Africa’s Andile Jali (L) passes Senegal’s Saliou Ciss (R) during the 2018 World Cup qualifying football match between South Africa and Senegal on November 12, 2016 at the Peter Mokaba stadium in Polokwane © AFP/File / STRINGERPARIS, France, Sep 6 – FIFA on Wednesday ordered a World Cup qualifier between South Africa and Senegal to be replayed after the referee was banned for match fixing.The November 2016 tie, which will be restaged in November, was won by South Africa 2-1 after Ghanaian referee Joseph Lamptey awarded them a controversial penalty.last_img read more

Arsenal set their sights on Uruguay striker after Benzema snub

first_imgArsenal are now chasing Edinson Cavani after they were snubbed by Real Madrid’s Karim Benzema, according to talkSPORT’s South American football expert Tim Vickery.Benzema tweeted on Monday saying Madrid was his home and that fans should not believe the “clowns” linking him with a move away.Paris Saint-Germain’s Cavani is another who has been linked with a move to the Premier League, with Arsenal and Manchester United interested, but Vickery has his reservations about the striker.“The angle the Uruguayan press are going with is that now with Benzema now not going to happen, Arsenal have set their sights on Cavani,” he told Hawksbee & Jacobs.“He’s a box to box centre-forward, his workrate is outstanding. He is quite happy to chase well back into his own half and he really does put in a shift.“My doubt about him – and I’ve seen a lot of him from Uruguay under-20s – is that he never quite manages to score the goals that you think he should.”last_img read more

2010 Fifa World Cup: Mbombela Stadium 2

first_imgLocation: Nelspruit, Mpumalanga provinceCapacity: 43 589 seatsMatches: Honduras vs Chile (16 June), Italy vs New Zealand (20 June), Australia vs Serbia (23 June), North Korea vs Côte d’Ivoire (25 June)Click on a thumbnail for a low-resolution image, or right-click on the link below it to download a high-resolution copy of the image.  Photo: Graeme Williams,MediaClubSouthAfrica.com• Download high-resolution image • Download high-resolution tiff image Photo: Graeme Williams,MediaClubSouthAfrica.com• Download high-resolution image • Download high-resolution tiff image Photo: Graeme Williams,MediaClubSouthAfrica.com• Download high-resolution image • Download high-resolution tiff image Photo: Graeme Williams,MediaClubSouthAfrica.com• Download high-resolution image • Download high-resolution tiff image Photo: Graeme Williams,MediaClubSouthAfrica.com• Download high-resolution image • Download high-resolution tiff image Photo: Graeme Williams,MediaClubSouthAfrica.com• Download high-resolution image • Download high-resolution tiff image {loadposition fifa}last_img read more

Cape Classics win over US wine lovers

first_img11 October 2010When Andre Shearer founded Cape Classics in New York in 1992, the American wine market was regarded as too tough for South African exporters to crack. Today, his company is the biggest US importer of high-end South African wines, representing 21 of the Cape’s finest estates and labels.On arriving in New York in June 1991, Shearer arranged the first tasting of South African wines in the United States – barely three weeks after then-president George Bush lifted sanctions on a South Africa just emerging from apartheid. Today, Cape Classics distributes in 49 states in the US, with partners including the Darden Restaurant Group (Seasons 52, Capital Grille and Red Lobster), Uno Chicago Grill, Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Walt Disney World, Trader Joe’s, COSTCO and Whole Foods Market.Ken Forrester Vineyards, internationally recognized as one of South Africa’s top producers and one of the most visible South African wine brands in the US market, appointed Cape Classics as its sole US importer as of 1 October 2010.With this addition to its portfolio, more than one-third of all bottled wine from South Africa available in the US will bear the Cape Classics seal.Unofficial ambassadorDividing his time between Cape Town and Katonah, New York, Shearer has for years acted as an unofficial ambassador for the country of his birth, showcasing South Africa as an investment destination through wine-tasting dinners at top New York restaurants in collaboration with US fund managers.Claire Bisseker, in a Financial Mail interview, writes of his dinners: “For each course, Shearer gets the guests (most of whom have never set foot in South Africa) to blind-taste an SA wine against other well-known international brands.“‘At the end of the evening,’ says Shearer, ‘even if they prefer only three of the South African wines out of five, or if the SA wines fared close, the message is that a country couldn’t produce wines like this if it didn’t have First World attributes.’”His message appears to be getting across. Over half-a-million cases of South African wine entered the US in the first seven months of this year, according to the US International Trade Commission. South Africa now ranks eighth as source of US red imports, and 10th as a source of whites.Along the way, Cape Classics and its labels have been featured in New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Departures Magazine, The Wine Advocate and The Wine Spectator, and the company was named best wine importer at Food & Wine Magazine’s 2001 American Wine Awards.Indaba Scholarship, Jam Jar Sweet ShirazAnd Shearer is intent on helping to develop the South African industry in other ways, too. In January 2010, Stellenbosch University student Arlene Mains became the eighth recipient of Cape Classics’ Indaba Scholarship, which is open to aspirant winemakers, marketers and viticulturists from communities historically excluded from senior positions in South Africa’s wine industry.Mzokhona Mvemve, the first recipient of the scholarship, became one of South Africa’s first qualified black African winemakers after graduating from Stellenbosch University in 2003.Besides self-belief and perseverance, innovation is one of the typical South African qualities that Shearer has brought to Cape Classics. In 2009, the company launched Jam Jar Sweet Shiraz, a unique semi-sweet red wine made from grapes grown in South Africa’s Paarl region, nationally in the US.Unapologetically accessible and populist, Jam Jar’s distinctive recipe and evocative packaging – featuring a red-and-white checkered screwcap inspired by traditional jam jar lids – has been a hit, to the point where people have been ordering the wine untasted, based on the name, packaging and style description alone.Through such initiatives, and an expanding, award-winning portfolio, Cape Classics continues to contribute to South Africa’s emergence as a wine-producing nation worth toasting.This article was first published in South Africa Now, a six-page supplement to the Washington Post produced on behalf of Brand South Africa. Download South Africa Now (PDF, 2.12 MB).last_img read more

Desperate Measures? Oracle Prices Shoot Up 40%

first_imgSoftware giant Oracle has increased prices by a full 40% for some products. Specifically, the diagnostics and tuning packs for enterprise database management have swelled to $5,000 since December. The Spatial database also went up from $11,500 to $17,500.No company spokesman has yet commented to ReadWriteWeb or other sources, and the full reasoning behind the price hike remains unexplained, officially anyway. Unofficially, it’s clear that Oracle is looking to its most high-end products to raise the bottom line during lean times. The last data sheet to show the lower price points is from December 2008, and current prices available are displaying the increase. However, it’s still unclear exactly when the bump occurred.The packs affected by the price increase are for monitoring and compliance of some of the largest and most high-value databases in the enterprise, and are used by administrators looking to find and deal with trouble spots. For especially high-risk industries like health care and banking, not using the packs for dealing with compliance issues and other mission critical activities is not realistically an option. While these lists are more a starting point for negotiations than a firm offer, the significant increase in asking price is still makes a big impact on what customers end up paying. 3 Areas of Your Business that Need Tech Now steven walling IT + Project Management: A Love Affair Massive Non-Desk Workforce is an Opportunity fo…center_img Related Posts Tags:#enterprise Cognitive Automation is the Immediate Future of…last_img read more

Heat Pumps Get a Leg Up in Vermont

first_imgHeat pumps could save consumers a lot of moneyVermont is a cold weather state, all of it in Climate Zone 6, but the most efficient air-source heat pumps work in temperatures well below zero, and converting a conventional heating system to one incorporating a high-efficiency heat pump would offer hefty savings.According to a fact sheet at Efficiency Vermont, a homeowner would save $1,842 a year by shifting 80% of the heating load away from electric resistance heat to a cold-weather heat pump. Propane users would save $1,268 a year, and those with oil heat would save $865 a year.(Efficiency Vermont says those estimates are based on the average annual heating load in Vermont of 77 million Btu, and an assumed heat pump Coefficient of Performance of 2.5. Fuel cost estimates are averages from the state’s Department of Public Service.)Only homeowners using pellets or cordwood to heat their homes would pay more with a high-efficiency heat pump, the agency said. It would be $68 a year cheaper to heat with wood pellets and $325 a year cheaper to heat with wood. More Vermonters will be installing high-efficiency heat pumps in their homes thanks to a bill signed into law by Gov. Peter Shumlin on June 11.The legislation allows Efficiency Vermont, an agency that collects money from utility ratepayers to fund programs that lower energy consumption, to use some of its $40 million annual budget to subsidize the purchase of high-efficiency heat pumps.“We have been given the mandate now to do something with regard to heat pumps, which is something that Efficiency Vermont never had before because our mandate was to reduce electric usage,” Public Affairs Manager Kelly Lucci said. “In this case, we have a technology that increases electric usage but does it very efficiently and displaces much dirtier fossil fuels.”Just like utilities that distribute or generate power, Efficiency Vermont is a regulated utility. Details about the new heat pump program, and how much money will be committed to it, are still to be worked out with state utility regulators.But one approach that’s well along in the planning stages is an “upstream efficiency program” in which subsidies are used to buy down the cost of high-efficiency air-source heat pumps with vendors and dealers. When a homeowner purchases a heat pump, the most efficient models will cost the same or less than less efficient models. Lucci said that part of the program could be up and running by the end of the year.At a later date, the program might also include ground-source heat pumps, but Lucci said that technology would be subject to cost-effectiveness tests before it could be covered by any subsidies.“This is venturing into new territory for us,” she said. “We’re excited about it. It means we’re able to think about ways to meet the needs of folks who are very excited about this technology and see it as a way to save money and reduce their carbon impact.” Vermont utility launched heat pump rentals a year agoThe legislation is brand new, but almost a year ago, Green Mountain Power announced a heat-pump rental program centered in the Rutland area. Green Mountain, which serves about 250,000 customers, said the pilot program was the first of its kind in the U.S.The utility initially announced last July that it would pay to install heat pumps in as many as 200 homes and small businesses and rent them to the property owners for between $44 and $53 a month.But a week later, the company said the response from consumers “has been flabbergasting,” with more than 500 customers expressing interest in getting their hands on a no-money-down heat pump. As a result, the utility said it would expand the program to include everyone who had responded at that point but would close the pilot to any additional customers.As it turned out, not all of those people had houses suitable for heat pumps; they didn’t have open floor plans, for example, or the wood stoves they had were already doing a good job of heating. By this March, roughly 150 heat pumps had been rented under the program, a Green Mountain spokeswoman said. The company is planning on expanding the program this year to include a few hundred new customers.“We believe air-source heat pumps can dramatically change the way Vermonters heat their homes, and reduce economic costs and environmental impacts of burning foreign oil,” Green Mountain President and CEO Mary Powell said at the time the rental program was announced. “This program will help demonstrate that value, while creating jobs for installers and freeing up customers’ cash for other purposes.”center_img State aims to drive down the cost of providing electricityOverall, Vermont has done a lot to trim energy consumption. In a statement issued by the governor’s office on June 11, Shumlin said Vermonters used 13% less electricity in 2013 than they would have without all of the efficiency investments made since 2000.Energy efficiency programs, along with distributed renewable electricity generation, has helped to defer nearly $400 million in infrastructure costs, Efficiency Vermont Director Jim Merriam said in a statement.The heat pump subsidies dovetail with more consumer interest in the technology. Merriam said that in the last year, 2,400 cold-climate heat pumps had been purchased in the state.The legisation, he said, “calls for Efficiency Vermont to help Vermont families and businesses understand what their best energy choices are from a cost and a carbon perspective, and then act on that information. That might mean that in some cases we actually encourage the use of more electricity, but less oil or propane.”last_img read more