Norton Rose picks More London

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UIC faces up to revolution

first_imgThe International Union of Railways marked its 75th birthday with a seminar in Paris on June 19 which revealed just how widely opinions differ on the best way to replace monolithic state-owned railways. But on one point there was consensus: the earthquake that has hit the industry in the 1990s marks the start of a fundamental restructuring that can only accelerate, even though the ideal model has yet to emerge. And as more than one speaker stressed, the UIC must lead that change.In a recorded video, EU Transport Commissioner Neil Kinnock warned that ’rail has lost and is losing traffic at an alarming rate’ because of ’customer dissatisfaction’. His may be a regional perspective, but then UIC has never really made up its mind whether it is a world body or a co-ordinator of standards for Europe’s state railways. And if railways are winning profitable freight in the USA and passengers in Japan, they are all too frequently on the ropes elsewhere – apart from the few remaining planned economies such as China. Lou Thompson, Railways Adviser to the World Bank, believed European Commission initiatives designed to expose the railway industry to market forces resulted from ’sheer frustration’ because ’it cannot be denied that the railways of Europe were dying, much as they were in the US in the 1970s’. Indeed, he saw ’very similar dilemmas in many of the countries we are advising.’Heinz Dürr, Chairman of the Community of European Railways (and of German Railway until last month) criticised governments ’which had let their railway run down over 40 years.’ One legacy was ’railway people who think they have a job for life – they have to recognise that it is the customer who pays them, not the finance ministry.’ He also challenged the separation of infrastructure from operations that is a cornerstone of Kinnock’s open access policy, pointing to the successful vertically-integrated railways of the US and Japan, and was backed by Shuichiro Yamanouchi, Chairman of JR-East. Vince O’Rourke, Chairman of the Australasian Railway Association and Chief Executive of Queensland Rail, was ’very strongly of the view that we should run a vertically integrated railway’ because ’the benefits far outweigh any benefits of separation.’Thompson predicted great diversity in the structures that would emerge, and cited concessioning of infrastructure that remained in public ownership in Latin America and New Zealand as proof that ’the railways problem can be solved, or at least alleviated.’ He thought independent management of freight and passenger operations was essential, which was why many European railways ’will take advantage of the infrastructure separation model propounded by the EC.’ In the end, what matters is not the structure but ’whether a company lives or dies by its customers.’ As an optimist, Thompson was ’convinced that railways had a major role to play’, and ’when we attend the UIC’s 85th anniversary, I predict that we will see an organisationally focused, market-driven UIC as well.’ oIn Briefn The International Air Rail Organisation was formally launched at the beginning of July to share best practice between companies involved with airport rail links (RG 1.97 p3). Founder members include Heathrow Express, Netherlands Railways, London Underground, Hong Kong MTRC and Halcrow Transmark.n CSX and Norfolk Southern filed their operating plan for the proposed carve-up of Conrail with the Surface Transportation Board on June 23. The joint application estimates that the two companies will realise more than $800m through greater efficiencies and increased revenue following the takeover.n On June 30 the European Investment Bank announced approval for a further Ecu75m loan towards upgrading work on the Czech portion of the Berlin – Praha – Wien corridor.n Turkish company Kale Group has paid 2bn lira to TCDD for the right to operate freight trains between Bandirma and Sigirci for a year, cutting its transport costs by 40%. Kale is expected to spend US$20m to run its own services.n Dakota, Minnesota & Eastern Railroad unveiled proposals on June 9 to break into the lucrative Powder River coal business, now served by UP and BNSF. DM&E plans to rebuild its 1050 kmline from the Mississippi River in Minnesota to Rapid City, South Dakota, and build a 400 km link into the Wyoming coalfields. The $1·2bn scheme would take five years. n Croatian Railways resumed control of its routes in the Serb enclave of Eastern Slavonia in mid-June, following the signing of a UN-sponsored agreement in Vukovar.n Syrian Railways signed a FFr350m contract in June to buy 30 diesel locos from GEC Alsthom; the deal will be funded by an inter-government letter of credit following President Chirac’s visit to Damascus towards the end of 1996.n Construction of Atlanta’s North line metro extension from Sandy Springs to North Springs began in June, following the start of work on the 1·1 km from Dunwoody to Sandy Springs last November. Revenue service between Dunwoody and North Springs is due to start in December 2000. n On June 27 Chile’s Ferrocarril del Pacifico SA announced a US$47·5m investment including acquisition of 15 new locos, refurbishment of 1600 wagons and infrastructure rehabilitation. Fepasa has negotiated loans of US$14·5m from the International Finance Corp and $15·5m from Nissho Iwai American Corp.n Union Pacific undertook a second blockade of its Powder River coal line from June 16 – 21. The US$10m blitz by 330 staff and 150 machines saw the installation of another 14·5 km of double track, replacement of a bridge, installation of over 12000 sleepers, rail replacement on more than 20 curves and rail grinding on 230 track-km. n On June 26, the Federal Railroad Administration ordered all US railways to review their safety programmes, following a rear-end collision between two CSX trains in West Virginia and a head-on smash of two UP freights in Texas.n Negotiations have resumed for construction of rail links between Jordan and Israel, which would give Jordanian industries access to the ports of Haifa, Ashdod and Eilat.last_img read more

REGIONAL INTEGRATION: Retreat underscores long process for deepening regional integration

first_img Sharing is caring! Share 11 Views   no discussions Share GEORGETOWN, Guyana, CMC – Caribbean Community (CARICOM) leaders have ended their two-day retreat here indicating that the process towards a single economy within the 15-member grouping that would have gone into effect by 2015, will now “take longer than anticipated’.The leaders from 10 of the 1Caribbean countries – Trinidad and Tobago, Haiti, Suriname, St. Lucia and the Bahamas prime ministers were absent – said in a statement afterwards that they would now await a restructuring of the Guyana-based CARICOM Secretariat before establishing an over-arching decision-implementation arm to ensure regional policies are adhered to. “As regards the Single Economy, they recognised that the process towards full implementation would take longer than anticipated and agreed it may be best to pause and consolidate the gains of the Single Market before taking any further action on certain specific elements of the Single Economy, such as the creation of a single currency,” the statement said.The CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME) is intended to benefit the region by providing more and better opportunities to produce and sell goods and services and to attract investment. It will create one large market among the participating member states.“The main objectives of the CSME are: full use of labour (full employment) and full exploitation of the other factors of production (natural resources and capital); competitive production leading to greater variety and quantity of products and services to trade with other countries. It is expected that these objectives will in turn provide improved standards of living and work and sustained economic development,” according to the CARICOM Secretariat. “In respect of Governance, they reaffirmed the decision taken at their Inter-Sessional Meeting in Grenada in February to await the completion of the current review of the CARICOM Secretariat, before taking any firm decisions towards the establishment of the Permanent Committee of CARICOM Ambassadors (PCCA),” the statement said after the retreat held at BK International’s quarry resort at Teperu, Mazaruni.Regarding a replacement for Sir Edwin Carrington, who resigned as secretary general of the grouping at the start of the year, the leaders also “agreed that the persons short-listed for the position would be subjected to further processes, with a view to taking a final decision by July 2011”.The leaders also agreed that the review of the Secretariat should take into account the strengthening of the institution to enable it to play an enhanced role in the area of mobilizing substantial resources for concrete projects in the areas identified.They said that the restructuring should also allow the Secretariat to assist and advise member states with implementation; offer greater technical advice and address its ability to provide practical deliverables in the immediate and long term.The retreat was used by the leaders to continue discussions on “Prioritising the Focus and Direction of the Community” which they initiated at their Grenada meeting.center_img Share NewsRegional REGIONAL INTEGRATION: Retreat underscores long process for deepening regional integration by: – May 23, 2011 Tweetlast_img read more

‘Surge in COVID-19 cases maybe an ‘artificial trend’

first_img “The new estimates will show when the peak the COVID-19 cases in the Philippines will happen or for how long the outbreak will last,” she added./PN Meanwhile, Vergeire said that the estimate of the DOH and World Health Organization that the COVID-19 outbreak in the Philippines could peak in three months will depend on how effective the current interventions and measures are. “The test results that are being announced may not be timely. These are old cases, and we’re just catching up (with testing). That’s why we’re saying it might be an artificial rise,” Vergeire said. “We have more capacity and we have reduced the backlog,” she added. “In the coming days, when we’re done with the backlogs, we’ll be able to see the real increase or decrease of numbers of cases in the country.” MANILA – The Department of Health (DOH) sees an “artificial rise” in confirmed cases of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in the country as it reached 636 as of Wednesday. DOH Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said the increase in number of confirmed cases was due to the entry of additional testing kits and laboratories.center_img Apart from the addition 84 cases on Wednesday, the DOH have also registered three new deaths bringing the total casualty count to 38, while six additional recoveries, including actor Christopher de Leon, for a total of 26. “This is based on scientific assumptions, that we will reach the peak in 2 to 3 months if we do not implement stringent measures,” Vergeire said. “We are working on new estimates now that the government has employed the enhanced community quarantine for Luzon.” PRACTICING. Members of the Manila Police District Station 9 hold a dry run for the lockdown on vehicles passing along Quirino Avenue and Roxas Blvd in Manila on March 13, 2020. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rapplerlast_img read more

Centerville Wins The Battle Of The Bulldogs

first_imgBatesville Bulldogs Swimming traveled to Centerville High School to compete in dual meet competition. Both teams swam well, but fell short. The women losing 102-71 and the men falling to 0-3 in dual meet action with a score of 121-45.Batesville vs. Centerville Swimming (11-30)“Both teams swam very well winning a handful of events while also obtaining some season best times,” head coach Greg McMullen said, “Centerville is tough opponent, but we were able to come out and swim our races.”  Bulldogs Coach Greg McMullen.Event winners included:  Girl’s 200 Medley Relay (Ashley Daulton, Audra Brewer, Halle Renck, Kate Poltrack); Joseph Choi – 100 Free, 100 Breast; Poltrack – 500 Free; Brewer – 100 Breast.Event runner-ups:  Men’s 200 Medley Relay (Skylar Simpson, Joseph Choi, Ethan Brewer, Grant Meyers); Sonja Gaulin – 200 Free; Skylar Simpson – 200 Free; Ashley Daulton – 50 Free, 100 Back; Ella Gutzwiller – 100 Fly; A. Brewer – 100 Free; Gwen Martin – 500 Free; Quinn Rasnick – 500 Free; Men’s 200 Free Relay (Meyers, Adam Hollowell, E. Brewer, Choi); E. Brewer – 100 Back;– Women’s 400 Free Relay (Poltrack, Ertel, Simpson, Daulton).last_img read more

Counties not prepared to fight COVID-19 –Nurses Union

first_imgMarian Awour Adumbo who worked at Rachuonyo Sub-County Hospital was admitted at Homabay County Hospital with flu-like symptoms in pregnancy, where she tested negative for COVID-19 a week ago.Get breaking news on your Mobile as-it-happens. SMS ‘NEWS’ to 20153 As the number of COVID-19 cases surpassing 20,000 in the country, the National Nurses Association of Kenya (NNAK) has said that County Governments are not prepared to handle the pandemic.This comes after one nurse succumbed Sunday due to COVID-19 complications.Her death brings the total number of healthcare workers to have died due to COVID-19 to three in a span of five months. According to the Nurses Union, Marian developed breathing complications and was transferred to Kisii Teaching and Referral Hospital where another test was done and the result was positive for COVID-19.Also Read  152 more test positive as Kenya’s COVID-19 cases hit 36,981“We have realized that county governments are not prepared to handle COVID-19. Our demands are still not met and what we need is action and less word for the benefit of our healthcare workers and our people,” said NNAK through a statement.Also Read  President Uhuru to make remarks in the 75th Session of UNGA“We have realized that county governments are not prepared to handle COVID-19,” said NNAK through a statement.“Our demands are still not met and what we need is action and less word for the benefit of our healthcare workers and our people.”NNAK urged both the national and county and national governments to move with speed to ensure that healthcare workers demands are met.The union wants the provision of adequate and quality Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs), proper training for all healthcare workers on managing COVID-19, adequate psychosocial support to all the healthcare workers and employment of more healthcare workers in all the 47 counties.Also Read  COVID-19: Kenya records 139 new cases, 198 recoveries and 9 fatalities“We should never put nurses and other health professionals in a situation where they are more worried of their health and the future of their siblings in case something adverse happens to them in their line of duty. Health workers should never beg for this if we are serious in their welfare and combating this disease,” it said.last_img read more

Davis wants to avoid Euro hype

first_img A clinical 2-0 away win over Group F’s faltering favourites Greece on Tuesday made it three wins in three for Michael O’Neill’s men, Northern Ireland’s best ever start to a World Cup or European campaign. That leaves them top of the standings by two points and in with a wonderful chance of reaching their first major finals in 30 years. Northern Ireland captain Steven Davis will attempt to steer clear of the growing expectation surrounding the side following their flawless start to Euro 2016 qualifying. Press Association But while Southampton midfielder Davis is delighted for the fans back home, who can now start to dream of an unexpected trip to France, he feels it is no bad thing for the squad to get back across the water and away from the excitement. “I don’t think trying to keep our feet on the ground will be much of an issue,” said Davis, whose side came into the group having dropped into seeding pot five. “It may help that we don’t see the hype at home but it is great to have that again. “People have optimism but we know there is another tough away game next month in Romania and the most important thing for us is to continue the momentum. “It’s been an unbelievable start for us because I don’t think anyone could have foreseen it, especially the way the fixtures came out with two tough away games in Hungary and Greece. “We are just delighted with the start and we will enjoy it but then it’s about concentrating on Romania next month.” Davis joined the praise for striker Kyle Lafferty, who maintained his own 100 per cent record of scoring in every game so far. The Norwich man has not always delivered on his promise on the international stage but has shown a new-found maturity this year, with man-of-the-match displays against Hungary, the Faroe Islands and Greece. And Davis is delighted to see his former Rangers team-mate back at his imposing best. “Big Laff has been excellent. He gives us that outlet and in the first three games he’s been outstanding,” he said. “He’s been unbelievable for us but that is the sort of thing we are going to need from him if we are going to be successful. “It’s been an excellent start and I’m sure he will take a lot of confidence from it. “He really deserves it. He works so hard for the team, even in the past and it’s nice to see him getting his rewards.” last_img read more

GFF completes 82 transfers during January window

first_imgAT the end of the official mid-season transfer period, 82 transfers have been facilitated by the Guyana Football Federation Inc. (GFF). This period ended at midnight on January 31, 2017 and included four international transfers, three of which are from the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA).Among the international transfers are Pernell Shultz and Kareem Knights being loaned to the Fruta Conquerors Football Club from Caledonia AIA (Trinidad), Domini Garnett also being loaned from Caledonia AIA (Trinidad) to Grove Hi-Tech Football Club and Vurlon Mills loaned from Slingerz Football Club to San Juan Jabloteh (Trinidad).Fruta Conquerors FC has acquired the most transfers – 14 players.Meanwhile, Western Tigers FC has gained 9 players, Victoria Kings FC 8 players, Topp XX picked up 7 players while the Guyana Defence Force FC (GDF) and Eagles United FC have enlisted 6 players eachMeanwhile Northern Rangers FC and Den Amstel FC have gained 5 players each, Ann’s Grove United FC 4 players, Buxton United FC, Uitvlugt Warriors FC and Grove Hi-Tech FC – 3 players each and Riddim Squad FC and Botofago FC 2 players eachNetrockers FC, Guyana Police Force FC (GPF), Order and Discipline FC, Milerock FC, and San Juan Jabloteh (Trinidad) have also enlisted one player each.In accordance with Article 13 Section 1; members are “not to publish any confidential correspondence exchanged with the GFF unless GFF has given its expressed written consent to do so”.GFF’s Competitions Director, Ian Alves, said the transfer period started off slowly but was hectic during the last week of the transfer window.The GFF’s pre-season transfer period began on January 1, 2017. The next transfer period is scheduled to commence on June 1, 2017.last_img read more

Bhagwandin wins Trophy Stall golf tournament

first_img—Persaud, eight-time Guyana Cup champion, settles for third placeMAHENDRA Bhagwandin opened his 2018 season by winning the Lusignan Golf Club’s (LGC) Trophy Stall-sponsored tournament on Saturday at the club’s facility, Lusignan, East Coast Demerara.In conditions which, according to some golfers, were very difficult, Bhagwandin registered a Gross 88 and Net 66 to cart off top honours, ahead of Pandit Ravi who scored a gross 88 and Net 70, and Guyana Cup Open eight-time champion, Avinash Persaud, who returned a Gross 70. Mike Mangal ended fourth with a Gross of 81 and Net 68.The Nearest to the Pin award went to Haresh Tiwari.LGC’s president Aleem Hussain, speaking at the simple presentation ceremony, thanked the golfers for coming out and participating in the Trophy Stall tournament, which was the first for the year, and noted that the golf season in Guyana does not start until the middle of the year, but he and his team worked to ensure that this year’s season teed off during the first month of the year and promised that there will be yet another tournament before the end of January.The club also inducted five new members, including international and popular Guyanese designer, Sonia Noel.Chief Executive Officer of MARCORP, Jorge Medina, was on hand to assist with the presentation of prizes to the respective winners.last_img read more