New Delhi: Honda Cars India is considering to increase vehicle prices by up to 1.2 per cent from next month to offset rise in cost of raw materials and introduction of new safety features, as per a senior company official. The company currently sells a range of models from premium hatchback Brio to premium sedan Accord Hybrid, priced between Rs 4.73 lakh and Rs 43.21 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi). “We are working on price increase on our models from July,” HCIL Senior Vice President and Director Sales and Marketing Rajesh Goel said. Also Read – Maruti cuts production for 8th straight month in SepHe said the cost of raw material has gone up in the last few months, but the same is currently being absorbed by the company. Goel said the company is contemplating to pass on some of the increase in input cost to consumers. “This price increase is due to accumulated raw material cost increases in the past which we have been absorbing so far and also safety regulation implementation.The increase (vehicle cost) would be up to 1.2 per cent,” he noted. This is the second time this year that the company is mulling to increase vehicle prices.
OTTAWA – The United States fired back Monday at the Canadian government’s retaliatory tariffs on American imports by launching a formal challenge with the World Trade Organization.The Trump administration also called countermeasures aimed at the U.S. by Canada and other trading partners “completely without justification under international rules.”The federal Liberal government introduced reciprocal duties earlier this month on some U.S. imports after the White House slapped Canada and others with tariffs on steel and aluminum.Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland has called Washington’s metal tariffs absurd and illegal because they’ve been applied on the premise that Canada represents a national security threat to the U.S. Ottawa’s response has been $16.6-billion worth of countermeasures on imports of American steel, aluminum and consumer products.The U.S. took a fresh step Monday in the trade fight by filing separate disputes at the WTO against Canada — as well as the European Union, China, Mexico and Turkey — over each jurisdiction’s set of counter-tariffs on imports of American goods.“The actions taken by the president are wholly legitimate and fully justified as a matter of U.S. law and international trade rules,” U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said in a statement.“Instead of working with us to address a common problem, some of our trading partners have elected to respond with retaliatory tariffs designed to punish American workers, farmers and companies.”Lighthizer added Monday that the countermeasures recently applied against the U.S. appear to breach WTO commitments. Resolving international trade disputes is a key role of the WTO.“The United States will take all necessary actions to protect our interests, and we urge our trading partners to work constructively with us on the problems created by massive and persistent excess capacity in the steel and aluminum sectors,” he said.Last month, U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said the U.S. tariffs against Canada and other allies were designed to force them into action to address the world’s overproduction and overcapacity of steel.Freeland has insisted that Canada introduced stronger safeguards on steel well before the U.S. imposed the tariffs.On this front, Ottawa feels it has more work to do. The federal government has said it’s consulting with industry so even more can be done to address the diversion and dumping of aluminum and steel in the Canadian market.On Monday, a spokesman for Freeland defended Ottawa’s retaliatory duties and argued they’re within Canada’s WTO and NAFTA rights.Adam Austen wrote in an email that it’s “a measured, perfectly reciprocal, dollar-for-dollar response to the U.S. tariffs.”“As Minister Freeland has said repeatedly, it is absurd to view any trade with Canada as a national security threat to the U.S.,” he said.“The tariffs imposed by the United States on Canadian steel and aluminum are unacceptable and illegal.”The unprecedented cross-border tensions have presented big challenges for the Canada-U.S. trading relationship. The hurdles include the stalled renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement and President Donald Trump’s threats that he will impose new tariffs — this time on the automotive sector.There are widespread warnings that levies on the highly integrated Canada-U.S. auto sector would be far more damaging for the economy than the duties on steel and aluminum. In Canada, Ontario would easily suffer the biggest economic blow among of the provinces.The Trump administration is still considering the auto tariffs and, later this week, the U.S. Department of Commerce will hold hearings on whether it can impose them over national security concerns, much like it did for steel and aluminum.David MacNaughton, Canada’s ambassador to the U.S., is scheduled to testify Thursday at the hearings in Washington. Jim Wilson, the Ontario government’s minister for economic development and trade, will also present his arguments before the hearings.“I will be vigorously advocating for the Canadian and American jobs that depend on our historic trading relationship,” Wilson said in a statement Monday.“It is clear that Ontario is not a national security risk to the United States. In fact, the U.S. and Ontario share many of the same goals.”— Follow @AndyBlatchford on Twitter
New Delhi: WhatsApp Wednesday said it will now allow its users to decide whether they want to get added to groups on the instant messaging platform. The move assumes significance, especially ahead of elections in the country, as social media platforms are expected to play a major role in political campaigns to reach out to citizens in large numbers. “WhatsApp groups continue to connect family, friends, coworkers, classmates and more. As people turn to groups for important conversations, users have asked for more control over their experience,” the Facebook-owned company said in a statement. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c details The messaging app has added that a new privacy setting in which an invite system will help users decide who can add them to groups. Previously, WhatsApp users could be added to groups without their consent. To enable the feature, users can go to ‘settings’ option in WhatsApp app and select one of three options — nobody, my contacts, or everyone. If they choose nobody , users will have to approve joining every group to which they are invited. Also Read – Tourists to be allowed in J&K from Thursday Upon choosing my contacts option, users from the person’s address book will be able to add them to groups. In these cases, the person inviting you to a group will be prompted to send a private invite through an individual chat, giving the user choice of joining the group. The user will be given three days to accept the invite before it expires, the statement said. “With these new features, users will have more control over the group messages they receive,” WhatsApp said. These new privacy settings will begin rolling out to some users starting Wednesday, and will be available worldwide in the coming weeks to those using the latest version of WhatsApp, it added. WhatsApp, which counts India as one of its largest markets with over 200 million users, had faced flak from the Indian government after a series of mob-lynching incidents, triggered by rumours circulating on the messaging platform, claimed lives last year. Under pressure to stop rumours and fake news, WhatsApp had last year restricted forwarding messages to five chats at once. It has also been putting out advertisements in newspapers and running television and radio campaigns offering tips to users on how to spot misinformation. With ensuing general elections, the Indian government had warned social media platforms of strong action if any attempt was made to influence the country’s electoral process through undesirable means. One of the amendments being mulled in the IT intermediary rules (meant for online and social media platforms) will require them to enable tracing out of such originators of information as needed by government agencies that are legally authorised. However, WhatsApp has so far resisted the government’s demand for identifying message originators, arguing that such a move would undermine the end-to-end encryption and the private nature of the platform, creating potential for serious misuse.
By Safaa KasraouiRabat – The NGO Green Council (GC) will organize the 1st International Green Festival on April 22 at the George Washington Academy (GWA) in Casablanca.Through the festival, GC aims to highlight measures to preserve and protect the earth as well as to encourage its staff, students and their parents to contribute to the process of environmental conservation. “The newly founded Green Council seeks to educate the student body, the staff, and parents on the matter of environmental awareness in hope to implement innovative mindsets and trigger a change in behavior within our community,” said GC in a press release.GC will also devote an environmental zone for thematic discussions on various issues related to environment and the measures people can take to help their community become greener.“GC’s main goal is to show the importance of nature, and how it is in danger, then be able to propose a couple solutions to these horrors as well as celebrate cultural diversity,” the same source added.The event will also host several activities, including cultural exchange programs which will provide international and national participants with the opportunity to represent their cultural backgrounds, music, and foods.Since its inception in 2016, GC has been working on starting an Electronic Waste Recycling on its campus, as well as on the replacement of bottled water with reusable water bottles.“GC started with testing their water’s purity and after discovering its outstanding purity the school has installed many water fountains. Their next step is to acquire the reusable bottles in order to successfully be able to replace the bottled water,” said GCThe festival will be organized in coordination with the GWA parents association.
OMAHA, Neb. — Warren Buffett says two potential successors earned roughly $18 million each last year managing Berkshire Hathaway’s dozens of operating companies.Buffett appeared on CNBC Monday after releasing his annual letter to shareholders over the weekend.Buffett says Greg Abel and Ajit Jain have both done a great job since they joined Berkshire’s board in early 2018. Jain oversees the conglomerate’s insurance businesses while Abel oversees non-insurance business operations.He says one of the two longtime Berkshire executives will likely become CEO eventually, but the 88-year-old Buffett has no plans to retire.Buffett also says the two investment managers that Berkshire hired several years ago have done well, though their investments have trailed the S&P 500 a bit since they joined Berkshire. He did say both have outperformed his own investments.The Associated Press
WASHINGTON — The United States opened the first round of negotiations for a new North American Free Trade Agreement on Wednesday with a muscular message that it will push for major changes, not just mere tweaks to the quarter-century-old agreement.The early rhetorical stomping from the economic giant in the middle of North America was at odds with the message of amity and mutual benefit emanating from the continent’s northern and southern amigos.The style was more rough-and-tumble than the substance. The U.S. listed a few demands and they were expected: changes in the auto sector that mean more production in North America, including the U.S.; changes to the dispute-resolution system; and a general rebalancing of trade relationships.American trade czar Robert Lighthizer called it a momentous occasion. He credited his boss for it. And he castigated the existing NAFTA as a failed agreement for many Americans, in those communities that have lost jobs and industries.“This is a historic day for the United States,” Lighthizer said. “American politicians have been promising to renegotiate NAFTA for years. But today President Trump is going to fulfil those promises.”Lighthizer said he completely shares Donald Trump’s views on trade. And that view, he said, is that the U.S. wants substantial changes to NAFTA. He appeared to walk back Trump’s quote a few months ago that suggested he only wanted some minor tweaking with Canada.“I want to be clear: He is not interested in a mere tweaking of a few provisions and a couple of updated chapters,” Lighthizer said.“We feel that NAFTA has fundamentally failed many, many Americans and needs major improvement.”He said these changes must include:— On auto parts, new rules for imports, so cars include “higher” North American continent, and “substantial” U.S. content under a revised tariff-free threshold. It’s still unclear what percentages the U.S. will seek and whether it will insist on an American-made percentage. Canadian and Mexican ministers quickly said they would oppose such an American carve-out.— A new dispute-settlement mechanism that respects national sovereignty and democratic processes. That question has been a historic irritant with Canada. It was the final issue resolved on the final night of negotiations in the 1987 agreement. At issue is whether international panels should have power to settle cross-border disputes between companies.Canada doesn’t want American courts deciding irritants like softwood lumber.Reacting to Lighthizer’s statement, Peter Clark — a Canadian trade expert who has sat on the dispute panels — said there’s probably room for compromise, like allowing extraordinary appeals to domestic courts: “Is there some middle ground? Can we set up a panel of retired Canada and U.S. judges, for instance?”Another trade observer admitted being surprised by the tone.“It’s an aggressive posture,” said Dan Ujczo, a Canada-U.S. attorney with Dickinson Wright. “It’s somewhat unorthodox to come out with that level of negative comments about the existing agreement and to lead with our most difficult issues first.“Most observers thought this would be an opening session of planning discussions over coffees and cocktails. But it’s clear the need for speed is taking over.”He urged people not to read too much into the posture.It merely indicates that the U.S. is in a hurry to get an agreement before Mexico’s election next year, and is moving faster than normal to get to the toughest issues, Ujczo said. Trade veterans say the pace of the talks is unprecedented — with the desire to revamp NAFTA over the course of several months.Many Americans resent the current NAFTA, Lighthizer said.It’s true the agreement has benefited sectors like farming, Lighthizer said: “But for countless Americans, this agreement has failed…. We cannot ignore the huge trade deficits; the lost manufacturing jobs; the businesses that have closed or moved.”Some 700,000 lost U.S. jobs are linked to NAFTA, he said.Day 1 even featured an academic point-counterpoint over the subject of trade deficits.Canada, Mexico and most mainstream economists believe judging a trade relationship on the basis of whether you buy or sell more to a specific partner is wrong-headed. But it’s a fixation of the Trump administration, which has made it a priority to narrow the import-export gap.Canada’s Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland challenged the economic rationale behind that. In any case, she noted, it’s irrelevant with respect to Canada — because Canada bought $8.1 billion more than it sold to the U.S. last year.Lighthizer countered that later. He pointed out that over the long term Canada has run a surplus with the U.S. He avoided mentioning the reason: oil prices. Historically, when they are high, Canada runs a trade surplus; when they drop, it’s a deficit.But the general tone from the non-U.S. participants was markedly warmer.Freeland opened her remarks by holding up a picture of U.S. and Mexican firefighters helping to douse forest fire flames in British Columbia: “Over the course of these negotiations,” she said, “I will be keeping these images, and the spirit that they represent, front of mind.”Mexico’s lead minister, Ildefonso Guajardo, agreed that the talks should seek a “win-win-win” for all three countries — a notion recently endorsed by U.S. Vice-President Mike Pence.
The mission will visit the affected areas “in order to better understand and appreciate the practical problems it would have to deal with and resolve in the course of the implementation of its mandate,” according to a joint communiqué adopted yesterday at the conclusion of the first formal meeting of the “mixed commission” in Yaoundé, Cameroon.The panel also agreed to establish a sub-commission, comprising legal experts and cartographers from Nigeria, Cameroon and the United Nations, responsible for the demarcation of the land boundary between the two countries.The sub-commission is scheduled to meet before the end of next January to prepare a small-scale map indicating the boundary and to “consider the nature and characteristics of the maps that need to be prepared for the demarcation,” the communiqué said. The UN commission also agreed to consider the assignment of UN military liaison officers in both countries at a later date.The commission, chaired by the Secretary-General’s Special Representative for West Africa, Ahmedou Ould-Adballah, was formed in response to a ruling in October on the Bakassi dispute by the International Court of Justice (ICJ), which essentially awarded Cameroon rights to the oil-rich peninsula. Following the Court’s decision, Nigeria asserted that the judgment did not consider “fundamental facts” about the Nigerian inhabitants of the territory, whose “ancestral homes” the ICJ had adjudged to be in Cameroonian territory.The next meeting of the commission was set for 4 to 5 February in Abuja, Nigeria.
The agency called for continued vigilance as Cambodia, China, Indonesia and Laos reported new outbreaks in poultry. At the same time, FAO hailed improvements in collaboration among affected States. “Countries realize that cooperation and transparency are absolutely essential for the fight against bird flu,” the agency said. But while China, Indonesia, Thailand and Viet Nam have set up information and response structures, the situation remains very difficult in some countries, especially the poorer ones which lack resources such as qualified veterinary staff, diagnostic tools and transport, it added. The disease has spread to humans in Viet Nam, which has reported 19 confirmed cases, 14 of them fatal, and Thailand with 6 cases, 5 of them fatal. Countries where outbreaks in birds have so far been confirmed are Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Japan, Laos, Republic of Korea, Thailand, Viet Nam and Pakistan. Veterinarians from more than 20 countries will gather for a UN-backed meeting from 26 to 28 February in Bangkok, Thailand, to discuss the economic impact of the avian flu crisis, strategies to control it, including emergency measures, and how to restore poultry industries and improve regional cooperation.
Flight delays pile up as air controllers are forced to take days off because of budget cuts by Scott Mayerowitz, The Associated Press Posted Apr 22, 2013 11:04 am MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email NEW YORK, N.Y. – Flight delays piled up across the country Monday as thousands of air traffic controllers began taking unpaid days off because of federal budget cuts, providing the most visible impact yet of Congress and the White House’s failure to agree on a long-term deficit-reduction plan.The Federal Aviation Administration kept planes on the ground because there weren’t enough controllers to monitor busy air corridors. Cascading delays held up flights at some of nation’s busiest airports, including New York, Baltimore and Washington. Many operations were more than two hours behind schedule.At one point, the delays were so bad that passengers on several Washington-New York shuttle flights could have reached their destination faster by taking the train.Nearly a third of flights at New York’s LaGuardia airport scheduled to take off before 3 p.m. were delayed 15 minutes or more, according to flight-tracking service FlightAware. Last Monday, just 6 per cent of LaGuardia’s flights were delayed.The situation was similar at Washington’s Reagan National Airport, in Newark, N.J., and in Philadelphia, with roughly 20 per cent of flights delayed.At airports, Monday is typically one of the busiest days, when many high-paying business travellers depart for a week on the road. The FAA’s controller cuts — a 10 per cent reduction of its staff — went into effect Sunday. The full force was not felt until Monday morning.Travel writer Tim Leffel had just boarded a US Airways plane from Charlotte, N.C., to Tampa, when the flight crew had an announcement.“They said: ‘The weather’s fine, but there aren’t enough air traffic controllers,’” Leffel said. Passengers were asked to head back into the terminal. “People were just kind of rolling their eyes.”His flight landed one hour and 13 minutes late.One thing working in fliers’ favour Monday was relatively good weather at most major airports. A few wind gusts in New York, snow in Denver and thunderstorms in Miami added to some delays, but generally there were clear skies and no major storms.However, the furloughs will continue for months, raising the risk of a turbulent summer travel season. And the lack of controllers could exacerbate weather problems, especially spring and summer thunderstorms.There’s no way for passengers to tell in advance which airport or flights will experience delays.FAA officials have said they have no choice but to furlough all 47,000 agency employees — including nearly 15,000 controllers — because the agency’s budget is dominated by salaries. Each employee will lose one day of work every other week. The FAA has said that planes will have to take off and land less frequently, so as not to overload the remaining controllers on duty.Critics have said the FAA could reduce its budget in other spots that wouldn’t delay travellers.“There’s a lot finger-pointing going on, but the simple truth is that it is Congress’s job to fix this,” said Rep. Rick Larsen, a Washington Democrat and member of the House aviation panel. “Flight delays are just the latest example of how the sequester is damaging the economy and hurting families across the country.”Some travel groups have warned that the disruptions could hurt the economy.“If these disruptions unfold as predicted, business travellers will stay home, severely impacting not only the travel industry but the economy overall,” the Global Business Travel Association warned the head of the FAA in a letter Friday.Deborah Seymour was one of the first fliers to face the headaches. She was supposed to fly Sunday night from Los Angles to Tucson, Ariz. First her 9:55 p.m. flight was delayed for four hours. Then at 2 a.m., Southwest Airlines cancelled it.“It’s pretty discouraging that Congress can’t get it together, and now it’s reached the point that we can’t get on an airplane and fly,” Seymour said.On some routes Monday, it was actually faster to take ground transportation. The 8 a.m. US Airways shuttle from Washington to New York pushed back from the gate six minutes early but didn’t take off until almost 10 a.m.The plane landed at 10:48 a.m. — more than two and a half hours late. If travellers instead took Amtrak’s 8 a.m. Acela Express train from Washington, they arrived in New York at 10:42 a.m. — four minutes early.Normally, there are 10 air traffic controllers at a regional facility handling arrivals for Los Angeles International Airport. On Sunday night, there were just seven, according to Mike Foote, a local union president with the National Air Traffic Controllers Association. A low layer of clouds late compounded the situation.In such weather, two controllers do nothing but watch planes as they descend below 15,000 feet to ensure they don’t veer off course. That allows 68 to 70 planes to land each hour. Because of the furloughs, there were no controllers to do that Sunday, dropping the arrival rate to 42 planes an hour, Foote said.United Airlines said there were “alarming pockets” of delays and warned that if a solution isn’t found, the problem could “affect air travel reliability for our customers.”Delta Air Lines cautioned travellers to expect delays in New York, Philadelphia, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Diego.Many flights heading to Florida were seeing delays of up to an hour. By late Monday, delays into Los Angeles were expected to average three hours.Having just one fewer controller to handle arrivals to Newark Liberty International Airport can result in the airport being unable to use a relief runway to handle peak traffic, reducing arrivals by about 15 per cent, said Dean Iacopelli, a union official at an FAA regional facility for New York’s airports.“It is not just telling one out of 10 people to stay home and so one out of 10 planes get delayed. It’s much more complicated that,” Iacopelli said.Prior to the furloughs, if a controller called in sick, there were enough people to take on the extra work, Iacopelli said, or somebody could be asked to work overtime. Now that isn’t possible.The FAA has also furloughed other critical employees, including airline and airport safety inspectors.In a letter to the FAA Friday, Delta general counsel Ben Hirst asked the agency to reconsider the furloughs, saying it could make the cuts elsewhere and transfer funds from “non-safety activities” to support the FAA’s “core mission of efficiently managing the nation’s airspace.”Two airline trade associations and the nation’s largest pilots union filed a lawsuit Friday asking the U.S. Court of Appeals to halt the furloughs. No hearing date has been set.The two airline associations — Airlines for America, which represents major carriers, and the Regional Airline Association — are asking the court to place a moratorium on enforcement of the Department of Transportation’s three-hour limit on the length of time airlines can keep passengers waiting inside planes on the tarmac without giving them the opportunity to return to a terminal.Airlines can be fined as much as $27,500 per passenger for violating the limit. The Transportation Department said it is reviewing the industry’s request.___Associated Press writers Joan Lowy in Washington and Christopher Weber in Los Angeles contributed to this report.___Scott Mayerowitz can be reached at http://twitter.com/GlobeTrotScott .
The price of oil rose slightly Tuesday as traders waited for new clues on U.S. economic strength and the amount of oil and gasoline in supply.Benchmark West Texas Intermediate crude for December delivery gained 31 cents to close at US$93.34 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.Oil has traded between US$93 and US$96 a barrel for more than two weeks and is down from nearly US$110 a barrel in early October due to ample supplies and tepid demand.Brent crude for January delivery, the benchmark for an international variety of crude, dropped $1.55 to US$106.92 a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange in London.U.S. retail sales due Wednesday might halt oil’s recent slide if the figures show increased demand for gasoline.Iran, meanwhile, will resume talks this week in Geneva with the U.S., Britain, France, Russia, China and Germany aimed at resolving a decade-long standoff over Iran’s nuclear program.The powers are offering a gradual rollback of sanctions that have crippled Iran’s economy, raising concerns of an influx of Iranian oil into world markets at a time of already abundant supplies.Fresh information on U.S. stockpiles of crude oil and refined products will be released Wednesday morning.Data for the week ended Nov. 15 is expected to show declines of 500,000 barrels in crude oil stocks and 150,000 barrels in gasoline stocks, according to a survey of analysts by Platts, the energy information arm of McGraw-Hill Cos.If confirmed, the fall in crude oil supplies would be the first in nearly two months. On Nov. 8, crude supplies were 13 per cent above their five-year average. Gasoline stocks, however, have fallen for five weeks in a row.In other energy futures trading on Nymex, wholesale gasoline slipped two cents to US$2.64 a U.S. gallon (3.79 litres), heating oil fell two cents to US$2.91 a gallon and natural gas lost six cents to $3.56 per 1,000 cubic feet.(TSX:ECA), (TSX:IMO), (TSX:SU), (TSX:HSE), (NYSE:BP), (NYSE:COP), (NYSE:XOM), (NYSE:CVX), (TSX:CNQ), (TSX:TLM), (TSX:COS), (TSX:CVE) AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email by Pablo Gorondi, The Associated Press Posted Nov 19, 2013 2:01 pm MDT Crude oil posts small gain as traders await US supply data, economic indicators
Home Capital, which appeared near collapse, seeks to put troubles behind by Alexandra Posadzki, The Canadian Press Posted Jun 15, 2017 8:31 am MDT Last Updated Jun 15, 2017 at 3:00 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email TORONTO – Home Capital Group, the lender that appeared at risk of collapse earlier this year, looks to have put some of its troubles behind it, easing fears it could trigger a real estate slump and broader problems for the country’s financial system.The company’s stock regained some lost ground Thursday after it announced a day earlier it reached settlements in two separate cases that could have complicated its recovery efforts.The agreements, which would cost Home Capital $30.5 million if approved, provide hope that it will be able to restore market confidence, ratings agency DBRS said in a note Thursday.“The settlements would remove market uncertainty surrounding improper disclosures,” DBRS said.Shares in Home Capital soared Thursday by 12.7 per cent, or $1.54, to $13.67. The rebound in the stock follows an announcement late Wednesday that Home Capital has agreed to settle a class-action lawsuit and a matter before the Ontario Securities Commission concerning allegations of misleading disclosure.Home Capital’s shares (TSX:HCG) took a thrashing in late April, after Ontario’s securities regulator announced it was pursuing allegations that the company and executives misled investors by not immediately disclosing information it uncovered about falsified loan applications.The agreements are subject to OSC and court approval and conditional upon the approval of the other.“The settlements could allow the group to attract new funding at more reasonable costs, especially since overall available liquidity has stabilized of late, albeit at significantly lower levels,” DBRS said.“Lastly, the group would be better positioned to focus on restoring market confidence by strengthening corporate governance, improving operating efficiency and rebuilding its relationships with mortgage brokers.”Home Capital announced back in July of 2015 that it had severed ties with 45 brokers over accusations that they had been making up income information on loans. Two of those brokers have faced sanctions from the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada.Customers of Home Capital started pulling their deposits in April of this year, creating a liquidity crisis at the company, which uses those deposits to fund its mortgage lending. That left some industry observers worrying about contagion to the wider mortgage market.The CEOs of Canada’s biggest banks were left fielding questions about Home Capital — and whether its problems were indicative of a roach motel hiding in Canada’s lending industry — during their most recent round of earnings conference calls.With its capital levels dwindling, Home Capital was forced to take out a $2 billion line of credit with onerous terms from the Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan two months ago.In a separate statement Thursday, Home Capital said it is aware of recent media reports about a potential refinancing transaction, and while it has indicated it is pursuing additional financing and other strategic options, it does not comment on speculation.There have been reports suggesting Home Capital is negotiating with some of Canada’s big banks to get a loan of up to $2 billion that would provide a less costly alternative to the financing from HOOP.Follow @alexposadzki on Twitter.
Campus Partners plans for 15th and High project Credit: Courtesy of Campus Partners
The survey of 3,000 people found satisfaction with the NHS is the lowest since 2011, at just 57 per cent.The polling found satisfaction with GPs fell seven percentage points in a year, to 65 per cent, compared with 80 per cent less in 2009. Long waits to get an appointment, staff shortages and lack of NHS funding were fuelling growing concern, the Kings’ Fund and Nuffield Trust said. “With public satisfaction scores ranging from 65 per cent for GPs to 23 per cent for social care, these findings again confirm the public’s enduring support for the NHS and the measures necessary to sustain it.” But the investigation by Pulse also reveals eleven schemes where sums paid out were directly linked to cutting referrals, including “profit sharing” schemes which meant practices could receive up to half of all savings made.CCGs said the schemes aimed to reduce unnecessary referrals, which would improve outcomes for patients. They said savings should be reinvested in services, not paid to GPs, whose earnings are derived from practice incomes.NHS Coastal West Sussex, practices are being allowed to keep 50 per cent of savings made from reducing the number of patients sent to hospital for surgery. NHS Enfield in north London has introduced similar plans for GPs who cut the number of patients sent to see specialists.In NHS West Leicestershire, practices can receive 30 per cent of any savings from cutting initital referrals to hospital. NHS Rotherham’s pays GP practices £3.36 per patient for hitting targets, which include cutting hospital referrals, with no exclusions for patients who may have cancer. And Barnsley CCG aims to cut referrals by 10 per cent, across a range of specialties – including heart care – in a scheme which a local GP described as “unsafe”. “From a patient perspective, it means GPs are paid to not look after them. It’s a serious dereliction of duty, influenced by CCGs trying to balance their books.”Professor Helen Stokes-Lampard, Chairman of the Royal College of GPs, said:“GPs need support to ensure that referrals are appropriate – not ethically-questionable initiatives that prioritise cost-savings over patient care.“Cash incentives based on how many referrals GPs make have no place in the NHS, and frankly, it is insulting to suggest otherwise,” the leading doctor said.Joyce Robins, from Patient Concern, said: “Any sort of financial incentive like these is an entirely dreadful way to run the service.“I think it’s truly disgusting – the very idea of cashback for GP practices that don’t refer patients to hospital undermines any trust between a patient and their doctor.” Many practices received a financial boost for setting up systems which meant every referral was double checked by another clinician before being allowed to go ahead. overall and 1,000 people about their feelings on individual services, found that 65 per cent of people said they were satisfied with GP services, the lowest level since the survey began.It is now no longer the highest rated service and on par with outpatient services – which also has a 65 per cent rate of satisfaction among the public.Ruth Robertson, fellow at The King’s Fund, said: “One of the findings I thought was most striking in this year’s survey is the slump in GP satisfaction.”Actually the public used to put GPs on a pedestal. They rated general practice much higher than other services.”But since 2009, when the public satisfaction with general practice was 80 per cent, it has been steadily declining.”And now for the first time, general practice is no longer the highest rated service. I think it is showing the huge pressure on general practice and the public are responding to that.”This is a service that people used to see as the jewel in the crown of the NHS and it is no longer the highest rated service. It is really in decline.”But she added: “More people are satisfied with the NHS than are dissatisfied and when we asked them why they are satisfied they showed really strong support for the core value principles of the NHS – being free at the point of use, the comprehensive range of services available. “I think that this shows that it is not falling out of favour, but people are worried about the NHS and they are worried about funding and staffing shortages.”Professor John Appleby, chief economist and director of research at the Nuffield Trust, said the Government should take “serious note” of the significant drop in satisfaction.”When we asked people why they are dissatisfied, it is increasingly less to do with pointing the finger at the NHS, and increasingly switching the blame to bigger issues – funding, staffing – which are of course the responsibility of Government policy,” he added.”The Government may think the NHS is safe in their hands, but the public disagrees with that,” he added. Professor Stokes Lampard, said the findings were “symptomatic of the inevitable effects of a decade of under-investment in our family doctor service – and just not having enough GPs in the system to meet demand.”Labour’s shadow health secretary Jonathan Ashworth said: “This survey is the clearest message to Theresa May that the Tory agenda of under-funding, cuts and privatisation must come to end.”An NHS England spokesman said: “While it is encouraging that for the second year in a row public concerns about waits have reduced, and public confidence that the NHS is using its funding well has again increased, these results understandably reflect a health service under pressure. GP practices are being given “cash back” for preventing patients from going to hospital, under “profit-share” agreements, which were last night condemned by patients’ groups.An investigation reveals that one in four NHS authorities has introduced financial incentives for GP practices which reduce the number of patients referred to hospital.They include schemes which mean practices can keep up to half of all savings generated, if they stop any rise in the numbers going to hospital, despite an ageing population. Others receive an extra £5 for every patient kept out of hospital, if referrals are cut by 10 per cent, under a £1.4m scheme.Patients’ groups said the policies were “truly disgusting” while leading GPs described the schemes as “ethically questionable” as they called for them to be halted.It comes amid polling showing satisfaction with GPs has slumped to the lowest level in 35 years, with a sharp fall in the last year.Think tanks said the findings from the British Social Attitudes survey were alarming, with a service once seen as “the jewel in the crown of the NHS” was “really in decline” with satisfaction levels falling by seven per cent in just one year.Freedom of Information disclosures from 181 clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) reveal 44 are now offering practices financial incentives in order to cut referrals to hospitals. The survey found satisfaction with the NHS overall is the lowest since 2011Credit:sturti Dr Peter Swinyard, chairman of the Family Doctor Association said the schemes were damaging patient care, and should not be stopped. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings.
When many think of moths, their minds go regretfully to the holes in their favourite cashmere. However, a butterfly charity has urged Britain to rethink their perception of the bug and argued that it is unfairly maligned.Their reputation comes despite the fact that only two of the more than 2,500 UK species of moth in the UK are known to feed on fabrics, Butterfly Conservation said.A YouGov poll for the wildlife charity found 74 per cent of people linked moths to negative things, including 64pc who thought of them as eating clothes and a third who associated them with being pests.Perhaps partly due to their reputation, two thirds of common moth species have declined in the last 40 years. Since 1914 there have been 56 moth extinctions, and just six of these have since recolonised or been re-found.The abundance of the UK’s larger moths has also crashed during the past 40 years with three species becoming extinct since 2000.This is a problem, as the creatures are important pollinators and a vital fixture of our gardens and parks.The wildlife charity is therefore launching a new campaign, called Moths Matter, which will reveal how the insects are a key food source for many creatures, from bats to small mammals, and play an important role in pollinating wildflowers including orchids, and garden plants. A survey suggests almost three quarters of people have some negative views of mothsCredit:PA lready, research has indicated that a decrease in the abundance of bats over farmland is related to the decline in the moths that they depend on. Cuckoos may also have been affected. Far from being the irritating creatures found in our wardrobes, many species of moth are so beautiful they could be mistaken for butterflies.The campaign is highlighting some of the more unusual moths found in the UK, including the death’s-head hawk-moth which can squeak like a mouse, the Mother Shipton which has a witch’s face on its wings and the caterpillar of the puss moth, which can shoot acid out of its chest.British people will be asked to look out for caterpillars and plant moth-friendly gardens with plants including lavender and honeysuckle.Another way to protect moth species is to stop working so hard in the garden; moths and their caterpillars need fallen leaves, old stems and other plant debris to help them hide from predators.Leading moth scientist Dr Phil Sterling said the experts were not surprised by the findings.”People may think of a few times a large moth has startled them and then write them off as annoying or unnecessary; that is wholly unfair,” he said.”Think of the humming-bird hawk-moth you might see hovering around lavender in summer. It is a thing of beauty and of wonder as it feeds so precisely in each flower.”Each of the 2,500 species tells a different story about the natural world of moths around us.”Most of them get on with their lives at night and we don’t see them, but they are important to us, they pollinate many plants and they tell us about how the world is changing around us.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings.
Maladies respiratoires : journée mondiale de la BPCOLe 17 novembre, journée mondiale de la bronchopneumopathie chronique obstructive, a été l’occasion de faire le point sur la maladie et d’insister sur l’importance du dépistage.La bronchopneumopathie obstructive est une affection des voies respiratoires qui intervient généralement après plus d’une décennie de tabagisme. Elle concerne principalement les fumeurs de plus de 20 ans. La maladie se caractérise par plusieurs symptômes : toux, essoufflement, expectoration. Si elle n’est pas diagnostiquée et traitée dès son apparition, elle peut entraîner un essoufflement chronique et même une insuffisance respiratoire nécessitant une oxygénothérapie permanente. Dans notre pays, cette maladie du fumeur, pourtant méconnue, est responsable de 8% des arrêts de travail. Elle représente 11% des décisions d’invalidité et des hospitalisations.À lire aussiLa fumée de cigarette ne touche pas chaque personne de la même façonPour lutter contre le phénomène, les médecins du travail ont été impliqués dans la journée mondiale de mobilisation. Ils ont bénéficié d’une campagne d’information ciblée, pour leur permettre de parler de diagnostic avec leurs patients. En effet, les malades de la BPCO ignorent souvent leur état, alors que le diagnostic précoce peut améliorer leur traitement.Plus d’infos sur Lesouffle.orgLe 18 novembre 2010 à 16:33 • Emmanuel Perrin
At her Vancouver town hall meeting in May, U.S. Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler vowed to vote no if presented on the House floor with “the option to raise the debt limit with no strings attached.” She would insist on deep cuts in federal spending, she said. Asked whether tax increases were a part of her plan to reduce the federal deficit, she said, “I’m not going to ask middle-class Americans to pay more than their fair share. “The freshman Republican from Camas hasn’t changed her view, but she’s a bit more optimistic that White House and congressional negotiators will reach a compromise by Aug. 2, in time to avoid an unprecedented default by the federal government on its $14.3 trillion debt. “I’m open to collaboration on this. I think we can get this done in a way that doesn’t doom our future,” Herrera Beutler said in an interview with The Columbian last week. Unlike some hard-liners in her party, she also makes a distinction between raising taxes and plugging federal tax loopholes. Congressional Republicans disagree even among themselves about exactly how to define a tax increase. That debate has become a roadblock to an agreement between the Obama administration and GOP lawmakers on a plan to raise the debt ceiling by the Aug. 2 deadline while agreeing to trillions of dollars in federal spending cuts over the next 10 years.
WILMINGTON, MA — The Wilmington Farmers Market will be open this Sunday, June 23, 2019 from 10am to 1pm, on the Swain Green, across from the Town Common, at 140 Middlesex Avenue.June 23 Farmers Market Lineup:Vendors:Arrowhead FarmBeads By BarbaraEJ’s Pizza Grab & GoGaouette FarmHawaiian Jim’s Shaved IceMa & Pa PicklesPurple Carrot BreadSeafood ExpressSwiss BakersTewksbury HoneyAdditional Attractions:Wilmington Community Fund giving away reusable bagsAleppo Shriners Band to performKids Cooking Green Shopping Day at Community TableMake Pom Pom Shooters at the Kids TableLike Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email email@example.com.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedWhat To Expect At The Wilmington Farmers Market On Sunday, September 8In “Community”THIS WEEKEND: Car Wash For WHS Field Hockey, Farmers Market, Free Concert & Voter Registration Drive ALL At Town Common On Sept. 8In “Community”What To Expect At The Wilmington Farmers Market On August 11In “Community”
Ten Rohingya Muslim men with their hands bound kneel in Inn Din village. Picture taken 1 September 2017. ReutersMohib Bullah is not your typical human rights investigator. He chews betel and he lives in a rickety hut made of plastic and bamboo. Sometimes, he can be found standing in a line for rations at the Rohingya refugee camp where he lives in Bangladesh.Yet Mohib Bullah is among a group of refugees who have achieved something that aid groups, foreign governments and journalists have not. They have painstakingly pieced together, name-by-name, the only record of Rohingya Muslims who were allegedly killed in a brutal crackdown by Myanmar’s military.The bloody assault in the western state of Rakhine drove more than 700,000 of the minority Rohingya people across the border into Bangladesh, and left thousands of dead behind.Aid agency Médecins Sans Frontières, working in Cox’s Bazar at the southern tip of Bangladesh, estimated in the first month of violence, beginning at the end of August 2017, that at least 6,700 Rohingya were killed. But the survey, in what is now the largest refugee camp in the world, was limited to the one month and didn’t identify individuals.The Rohingya list makers pressed on and their final tally put the number killed at more than 10,000. Their lists, which include the toll from a previous bout of violence in October 2016, catalogue victims by name, age, father’s name, address in Myanmar, and how they were killed.”When I became a refugee I felt I had to do something,” says Mohib Bullah, 43, who believes that the lists will be historical evidence of atrocities that could otherwise be forgotten.Myanmar government officials did not answer phone calls seeking comment on the Rohingya lists. Late last year, Myanmar’s military said that 13 members of the security forces had been killed. It also said it recovered the bodies of 376 Rohingya militants between Aug. 25 and Sept. 5, which is the day the army says its offensive against the militants officially ended.Rohingya regard themselves as native to Rakhine State. But a 1982 law restricts citizenship for the Rohingya and other minorities not considered members of one of Myanmar’s “national races”. Rohingya were excluded from Myanmar’s last nationwide census in 2014, and many have had their identity documents stripped from them or nullified, blocking them from voting in the landmark 2015 elections. The government refuses even to use the word “Rohingya,” instead calling them “Bengali” or “Muslim.”Now in Bangladesh and able to organise without being closely monitored by Myanmar’s security forces, the Rohingya have armed themselves with lists of the dead and pictures and video of atrocities recorded on their mobile phones, in a struggle against attempts to erase their history in Myanmar.The Rohingya accuse the Myanmar army of rapes and killings across northern Rakhine, where scores of villages were burnt to the ground and bulldozed after attacks on security forces by Rohingya insurgents. The United Nations has said Myanmar’s military may have committed genocide.Myanmar says what it calls a “clearance operation” in the state was a legitimate response to terrorist attacks.”NAME BY NAME”Clad in longyis, traditional Burmese wrap-arounds tied at the waist, and calling themselves the Arakan Rohingya Society for Peace & Human Rights, the list makers say they are all too aware of accusations by the Myanmar authorities and some foreigners that Rohingya refugees invent stories of tragedy to win global support.But they insist that when listing the dead they err on the side of under-estimation.Mohib Bullah, who was previously an aid worker, gives as an example the riverside village of Tula Toli in Maungdaw district, where – according to Rohingya who fled – more than 1,000 were killed. “We could only get 750 names, so we went with 750,” he said.”We went family by family, name by name,” he added. “Most information came from the affected family, a few dozen cases came from a neighbour, and a few came from people from other villages when we couldn’t find the relatives.”In their former lives, the Rohingya list makers were aid workers, teachers and religious scholars. Now after escaping to become refugees, they say they are best placed to chronicle the events that took place in northern Rakhine, which is out-of-bounds for foreign media, except on government-organised trips.”Our people are uneducated and some people may be confused during the interviews and investigations,” said Mohammed Rafee, a former administrator in the village of Kyauk Pan Du who has worked on the lists. But taken as a whole, he said, the information collected was “very reliable and credible.”SPRAWLING PROJECTGetting the full picture is difficult in the teeming dirt lanes of the refugee camps. Crowds of people gather to listen – and add their comments – amid booming calls to prayer from makeshift mosques and deafening downpours of rain. Even something as simple as a date can prompt an argument.What began tentatively in the courtyard of a mosque after Friday prayers one day last November became a sprawling project that drew in dozens of people and lasted months.The project has its flaws. The handwritten lists were compiled by volunteers, photocopied, and passed from person to person. The list makers asked questions in Rohingya about villages whose official names were Burmese, and then recorded the information in English. The result was a jumble of names: for example, there were about 30 different spellings for the village of Tula Toli.Wrapped in newspaper pages and stored on a shelf in the backroom of a clinic, the lists that Reuters reviewed were labeled as beginning in October 2016, the date of a previous exodus of Rohingya from Rakhine. There were also a handful of entries dated 2015 and 2012. And while most of the dates were European-style, with the day first and then the month, some were American-style, the other way around. So it wasn’t possible to be sure if an entry was, say, May 9 or September 5.It is also unclear how many versions of the lists there are. During interviews with Reuters, Rohingya refugees sometimes produced crumpled, handwritten or photocopied papers from shirt pockets or folds of their longyis.The list makers say they have given summaries of their findings, along with repatriation demands, to most foreign delegations, including those from the United Nations Fact-Finding Mission, who have visited the refugee camps.A LEGACY FOR SURVIVORSThe list makers became more organised as weeks of labour rolled into months. They took over three huts and held meetings, bringing in a table, plastic chairs, a laptop and a large banner carrying the group’s name.The MSF survey was carried out to determine how many people might need medical care, so the number of people killed and injured mattered, and the identity of those killed was not the focus. It is nothing like the mini-genealogy with many individual details that was produced by the Rohingya.Mohib Bullah and some of his friends say they drew up the lists as evidence of crimes against humanity they hope will eventually be used by the International Criminal Court, but others simply hope that the endeavour will return them to the homes they lost in Myanmar.”If I stay here a long time my children will wear jeans. I want them to wear longyi. I do not want to lose my traditions. I do not want to lose my culture,” said Mohammed Zubair, one of the list makers. “We made the documents to give to the UN. We want justice so we can go back to Myanmar.”Matt Wells, a senior crisis advisor for Amnesty International, said he has seen refugees in some conflict-ridden African countries make similar lists of the dead and arrested but the Rohingya undertaking was more systematic. “I think that’s explained by the fact that basically the entire displaced population is in one confined location,” he said.Wells said he believes the lists will have value for investigators into possible crimes against humanity.”In villages where we’ve documented military attacks in detail, the lists we’ve seen line up with witness testimonies and other information,” he said.In an email, the office of the prosecutor for the International Criminal Court in The Hague said it could not comment. In April, ICC Chief Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda asked the court for a ruling on whether the court could have jurisdiction over deportations of Rohingya people from Myanmar to Bangladesh, a possible crime against humanity. Myanmar, which is not a member of the court, has objected.The US State Department also documented alleged atrocities against Rohingya in an investigation that could be used to prosecute Myanmar’s military for crimes against humanity, US officials have told Reuters. For that and the MSF survey only a small number of the refugees were interviewed, according to a person who worked on the State Department survey and based on published MSF methodology.MSF did not respond to requests for comment on the Rohingya lists. The US State Department declined to share details of its survey and said it wouldn’t speculate on how findings from any organization might be used.For Mohammed Suleman, a shopkeeper from Tula Toli, the Rohingya lists are a legacy for his five-year-old daughter. He collapsed, sobbing, as he described how she cries every day for her mother, who was killed along with four other daughters.”One day she will grow up. She may be educated and want to know what happened and when. At that time I may also have died,” he said. “If it is written in a document, and kept safely, she will know what happened to her family.”
Light may increase magnetic memory speeds 1000 times, decrease electricity consumption Citation: Manipulating Magnetism for Future Data-Storage Devices (2007, April 30) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2007-04-magnetism-future-data-storage-devices.html In an important step toward future data-storage technologies based on magnetism, a research group has determined how to control the magnetization of a “magnetic vortex,” a curling nanometer-sized magnetic structure present within tiny, millionth-of-a-meter-sized magnetic disks. Understanding the behavior of this type of structure is one of the main requirements of magnetic data-storage development. A graphical representation of the magnetization of a magnetic disk with a rotating vortex. a-f, Over a time period of about 20 nanoseconds, the magnetization of the core (represented by the spike in the center of the disk) moves circularly around the disk´s center. Simultaneously, the magnetization switches from upward to downward and begins to switch back to upward. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. The group, led by scientists at Kyoto University in Japan, found a way to manipulate the magnetization of the vortex’s core without applying an external magnetic field to the disk. Instead, they applied a current.“We have taken advantage of the way the vortex responds to an applied current,” said corresponding Kyoto University scientist Teruo Ono to PhysOrg.com. “A current of the right strength resonates with the vortex, causing it to rotate at a high speed – several hundred meters per second. This motion produces a strong dynamic magnetic field that opposes the vortex’s own magnetization, and reverses it.”Although the applied current is electrical in nature, being based on electrons, it isn’t a stream of moving electrons. It is a “spin current,” a stream of moving spins. Spin is an intrinsic property of electrons that essentially imparts them with a tiny magnetic field, or magnetic “moment,” pointing either up or down. If several electrons are placed in a row, a spin can propagate down the line; many propagating spins produces a spin current.Across the globe, teams of researchers are working to build viable spin-based electronic devices – spintronics – using spin currents. This group’s work opens the possibility that simple magnetic disks can serve as the building blocks for spintronic devices like memory cells, where each bit of information would be stored as the direction of the vortex-core’s field. Vortex-core switching could be an efficient way of writing data to a memory device.The physics underlying this result is the tension created between the spin direction of the conduction electrons and the direction of the individual magnetic moments that make up the overall magnetic field of the vortex core. When they are positioned relative to each other at a specific angle, the spin current applies a torque to each moment, forcing the whole core to rotate.“This spin-transfer effect liberates us from having to apply a large external magnetic field in order to control magnetic devices, which means we can avoid the expense and effort required to maintain such large fields,” Ono added.This research is described in the March 18, 2007, online edition of Nature Materials.Citation: Keisuke Yamada, Shinya Kasai, Yoshinobu Nakatani, Kensuke Kobayashi, Hiroshi Kohno, André Thiaville, and Teruo Ono, Nature Materials advance online publication, 18 March 2007 (DOI 10.1038/nmat1867)Copyright 2007 PhysOrg.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of PhysOrg.com. Explore further