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Samsung’s insurance units to stop investing in coal-fired power projects

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Reuters:Key insurance affiliates of South Korea’s biggest conglomerate Samsung Group on Thursday pledged to step up their ‘coal-free’ policies by banning investments in the coal industry, following a global move towards a low-carbon economy.Samsung Fire & Marine Insurance Co Ltd, Samsung Life Insurance Co Ltd and other financial units said in a statement they will no longer make new investments in coal power-related businesses and will not invest in corporate bonds issued for the purpose of building coal-fired power plants going forward.Other units Samsung Securities Co Ltd and Samsung Asset Management will establish guidelines for investment, including the exclusion of investments in coal mining and coal power generation projects, and will apply them to their businesses starting from December, the statement added.The financial units plan to expand investments in renewable energy, electric vehicles and other eco-friendly assets.Separately, Samsung C&T Corp in late October said its board decided to halt any new coal-related investments, constructions and trading projects.Chip giant Samsung Electronics in its third-quarter earnings conference call also said it will continue to make efforts for its sustainability management in environmental and social issues.[Joori Roh]More: Samsung’s key insurance affiliates pledge to halt coal investments Samsung’s insurance units to stop investing in coal-fired power projectslast_img read more

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A record 6.6 million seek US jobless aid as layoffs mount

first_img(AP) — More than 6.6 million Americans applied for unemployment benefits last week, far exceeding a record high set just last week, a sign that layoffs are accelerating in the midst of the coronavirus. Last week’s figure is much higher than the previous record of 3.3 million reported for the previous week. The surging layoffs have led many economists to envision as many as 20 million lost jobs by the end of April. The job cuts are mounting against the backdrop of economies in the United States and abroad that have almost certainly sunk into a severe recession as businesses close across the world.last_img read more

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Qatar denies Gulf bloc exit rumors

first_imgTopics : Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, along with non-GCC member Egypt, abruptly cut diplomatic, economic and travel ties with Doha in June 2017 over their insistence that Qatar was too close to Iran and backing radical Islamist movements.Qatar fiercely rejected the charge and refused to budge on any of the 13 demands made by its allies-turned-adversaries. They include the closure of the Doha-based Al Jazeera news network and shutting a Turkish base.The dispute will enter its third year on June 5.”Qataris are asking themselves what benefit a membership in the GCC still has, as the organization has been usurped by Saudi Arabia and the UAE to coerce the smaller states into followership, while no initiative is being made to bring the Gulf Crisis to an end,” said King’s College assistant professor Andreas Krieg.Oman and Kuwait are the other two members of the body, which oversees regional economic and military coordination, along with Qatar and its regional rivals. Qatar denied on Thursday that it plans to quit the Gulf Cooperation Council as it prepares to mark three years of isolation led by the regional bloc’s heavyweight Saudi Arabia.However, the gas-rich state cautioned that the effort by three of the GCC’s six members to isolate Doha economically and politically meant people in the region were “doubting and questioning” the organization.Rumors of Qatar’s imminent departure from the GCC, founded in 1981 and headquartered in Riyadh, have been swirling in Gulf capitals in recent weeks, with analysts and diplomats flagging it as a possibility.center_img “Reports claiming that Qatar is considering leaving the GCC are wholly incorrect and baseless,” Qatar’s assistant foreign minister Lolwah al-Khater told AFP. “Such rumors must have originated from people’s despair and disappointment with a fractured GCC, which used to be a source of hope and aspiration for the people of the six member countries,” she said.”As we are reaching the third year of the illegal blockade on Qatar by Saudi, UAE and Bahrain, there is no wonder why the people of the GCC are doubting and questioning the GCC as an institution.”Qatar hopes the GCC will once again be a platform of cooperation and coordination. An effective GCC is needed now more than ever, given the challenges facing our region.”last_img read more

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New Zealand PM delays election after virus return

first_imgPrime Minister Jacinda Ardern on Monday delayed New Zealand’s looming election by four weeks to Oct. 17 after a renewed coronavirus outbreak hampered campaigning.Ardern was under pressure from political opponents and her coalition partners to shift the original Sept. 19 vote following the shock discovery of COVID-19 in Auckland last week, sending the country’s largest city into lockdown.She said the return of the virus after 102 days without community transmission had rattled Kiwis and could have discouraged some from casting ballots in a September election. The center-left leader, who is riding high in opinion polls, also acknowledged concerns from rivals that curbs on campaigning would unfairly weigh the election in favour of her government.After spending the weekend consulting party leaders and the Electoral Commission, she chose October 17, the earliest delayed date available to her.Ardern said the change meant all parties would be campaigning under the same conditions and she would not move the election’s timing again regardless of the situation.”I have absolutely no intention at all to change from this point,” she said. “This decision gives all parties time over the next nine weeks to campaign and the Electoral Commission enough time to ensure an election can go ahead.”All parties temporarily suspended campaigning in the wake of last week’s outbreak, the source of which remains unknown.The virus was first detected in four family members in Auckland early last week and by Monday the cluster had grown to 58 confirmed cases, with five people in hospital.’Common sense’ The South Pacific nation is following the same strategy that helped contain coronavirus during a seven-week lockdown earlier this year — isolating positive cases, contact tracing and extensive testing.The earlier success has helped lift Ardern’s personal popularity rating to a record 60 percent, along with her leadership during last year’s Christchurch mosque attacks and the White Island volcano eruption. Ardern’s Labour Party is on track to win office in its own right, without the minor party coalition partners — the Greens and New Zealand First (NZF) — it needed during its first term.The main opposition National Party last week demanded the election be postponed until late November, or preferably next year, saying September 19 was untenable.Ardern’s coalition partner NZF backed the delay Monday after earlier saying the September option had been “fatally compromised” by the outbreak. “Common sense has prevailed,” said NZF leader and Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters, whose populist party faces an election wipeout on current polling.Labour’s other coalition partner, the Greens, said the four-week delay should give health authorities time to contain the Auckland cluster.But co-leader James Shaw accused some parties of displaying “naked political self-interest” in demanding a delay, saying they hoped the pandemic’s economic impact would dent the government’s popularity in the meantime.”We have been incredibly disappointed to see the National and other small parties continue to use the weekend to bang on about what would suit them best politically,” he said.The virus is a strain not previously seen in New Zealand and national health director-general Ashley Bloomfield said tests to check if it was imported via freight sent to an Auckland coolroom facility were still being processed.But he assured the public there was no risk in purchasing frozen goods from the supermarket.”There’s no evidence of transmission by food or food packaging to date,” he said, adding that some form of human-to-human infection was still considered the most likely source of the outbreak.Topics :last_img read more

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​​​​​​​Probe underway after West Sulawesi journalist murdered

first_imgThe police in Central Mamuju regency, West Sulawesi, have launched an investigation into the death of Demas Laira, 28, an online media journalist who was found dead by a roadside last week.It is the second reported case of a media worker being found dead by a roadside in recent weeks. In July a video editor for private TV station Metro TV was found dead near the Pesanggrahan Jakarta outer ring road, the police concluded that the case was suicide.Demas’ body was found lying at the side of Jl. Trans Sulawesi in Salobijau hamlet, Karossa district, Central Mamuju, at around 2 a.m. local time on Thursday, with stab wounds to his chest, back, stomach and arms. He was found near his motorbike, which was still running at that time. His journalist identification cards from different online media outlets, personal ID card (KTP), driver’s license and several ATM cards were still with him, while his phone was missing.“We have investigated the scene, collected evidence and questioned a number of witnesses,” Central Mamuju Police criminal investigation unit head First. Insp. Agung Setyo Negoro said on Friday, as quoted by kompas.com.Agung said the police had found a shoe near the scene, which he said might lead to the alleged murderer.A Salobijau resident, identified as Dian, said local residents had heard screams for help before they found Demas’ body. “At first, residents heard screams for help from behind the hill. As they were curious, they rushed to the location and found the victim had died near his motorbike,” Dian said on Sunday.Read also: Civil groups condemn cyberattacks on Indonesian government criticsDemas’ family do not believe he was a victim of a robbery since he still had his belongings.“We are very sure that the perpetrator was not alone. We hope the police can find and bring them to court to be punished accordingly,” said a family member, Yosi.Yosi said that before his death, Demas was on his way home from the city of Palu. Demas’ older sister, Tabita, said Demas had called the family, saying that he would be home in the afternoon.“But by the next morning, he still hadn’t arrived home. We were worried because we saw on Facebook that [a body] was found lying on the road,” said Tabita.The family was informed by the police when Demas’ body was taken to the Central Mamuju Regional General Hospital.Mursalim Majid from the Indonesian Journalists Association (PWI) in West Sulawesi said a post-mortem examination found 17 stab wounds on the victim’s body.He condemned the incident, saying his association would meet with West Sulawesi Police chief Insp. Gen. Eko Budi Sampurno to urge him to fully investigate the murder.“The police must immediately reveal the motive and arrest the perpetrators,” Mursalim said on Friday, as quoted by Antara news agency. (syk)Topics :last_img read more

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Riverfront home offers more than just an exceptional view

first_img413 Brisbane Corso, YerongaAfter living on acreage for 18 years, Michael and Patricia McCarthy made the decision to move closer to the city. The couple purchased 413 Brisbane Corso, Yeronga, in 2007 off Mark Stockwell. The home at 413 Brisbane Corso, Yeronga“From that day on, we felt so welcomed, like we had always been there.”The three-level property sits on 1057sq m of waterfront land and has a in-ground pool, landscaped gardens and pontoon. More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus20 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market20 hours agoInside 413 Brisbane Corso, YerongaOn the main level of the home there is four bedrooms, two bathrooms, a laundry, living room, dining area, kitchen and back deck that looks out onto the swimming pool and river. The master suite occupies the entire third floor and has a walk-in-wardrobe, ensuite and deck. On the lower level, there is a large rumpus room, storage and a two-car garage. Mr McCarthy said the main deck was the heart of the home. The home at 413 Brisbane Corso, Yeronga“There was enough room for the whole family to enjoy all at once, but still have privacy.“It’s a very liveable and welcoming home. “There’s no doubt about that.” The river view from 413 Brisbane Corso, YerongaMr McCarthy said his family had enjoyed the home very much.“We loved that we didn’t have to do much to make it perfect for us,” he said.center_img Views from 413 Brisbane Corso, Yeronga“It’s a big feature of the house that looks out onto the river,” he said.“Whenever we have visitors they just head straight out to the deck.“I like to sit out there and gaze and think.“It’s very soothing.” The home at 413 Brisbane Corso, YerongaMr McCarthy said the couple were concerned the move would be “a bit of an adjustment” after living on acreage, but that it “fit like a glove” within no time.“Within days of moving in, we were invited to a neighbourhood party where we met so many locals and neighbours,” he said.last_img read more

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Sampension adds four to alternatives team and boosts allocation

first_imgDanish labour market pension fund Sampension is to put more money into alternatives including real estate over the next five years, boosting the allocation to between 20% and 25% of total assets, and is hiring four extra people on its alternatives team.Reporting interim results, chief executive Hasse Jørgensen said: “We will have the skills to deliver high stable returns for customers over the coming years.”In order to make this happen, the pension fund was preparing its alternative investments team, along with other other parts of the organisation.Jørgensen told IPE Sampension was adding four new staff to its alternatives team, and two of these were already in place. Over the next five years, the pension fund would invest DKK15bn (€2bn) in alternatives, he said, which would bring the allocation — including real estate — to between 20% and 25% from just under 20% now.Some of this DKK15bn would come from new money, and some would be re-investment from other areas, such as private equity investment funds that had matured, he said.“We are giving alternatives a higher priority,” Jørgensen said.In its first half results, Sampension reported a loss of 0.7% for traditional with-profits pensions before pensions tax, after a 10.9% profit in the same period last year.Even though the investment portfolio had generated a 2.2% return in the period, the hedging portfolio ended in June with a 3.8% loss as a result of higher long-term bond yields.Sam pension’s business income rose, with pension contributions up 3.2% compared with the same period last year to stand at DKK4.0bn at the end of June.The pension fund said the addition of the new pension fund for IT group KMD at the beginning of this year had helped to reverse the trend in falling contributions.However, Jørgensen said that structurally, Sampension was facing falling levels of contributions as its membership aged and moved into retirement.“This is a very long-term issue, but it has made us start thinking and take some action in order to at least maintain the critical mass we have at the moment,” he said.“We have been moving into the area of corporate pensions and won some bids there, and we are going to continue to do that in order to keep up our premium income,” he said.Mergers were also a possibility, he said.The most obvious candidates for partners would be smaller pension funds, of which there were many in Denmark he said.These funds were finding conditions difficult, especially with the implementation of Solvency II regulations coming up next year, he said.“We would expect to be able to help a number of smaller pension funds, but obviously that is their decision,” Jørgensen said.Sampension’s total assets decreased to DKK255bn by the end of June from DKK257bn at the end of December 2014.Its solvency, meanwhile, rose to 309% from 270%, according to interim data.last_img read more

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GMS Endeavour Heads to Hornsea One with Osbit Kit

first_imgOsbit Ltd has recently delivered a height adjustable boat landing system to Gulf Marine Services’ self-elevating support vessel (SESV) GMS Endeavour currently deployed on Ørsted’s Hornsea Project One wind farm off Yorkshire. According to Osbit, this is the offshore industry’s first height adjustable boat landing system for a jack-up vessel.The system has five height settings that enable it to be accessed in line with the vessel’s jacked up position, across the full tidal range. Its height, relative to the vessel deck, is adjusted using GMS Endeavour’s 230-tonne capacity on-board crane.“The specific challenge presented by our client for this project required our vessel GMS Endeavour to remain elevated at a height of 15.1 metres above sea level, while at the same time providing the capability to safely dock a CTV against the vessel, and then ensure the transit of up to 200 passengers per day from the CTV to the main deck of GMS Endeavour,” Duncan Anderson, Chief Executive Officer of Gulf Marine Services, said.“Our solution was to design and produce an integrated CTV boat landing and access tower specifically for our SESV. To date, the structure and its interface to GMS Endeavour has been designed, built, installed and finally approved in accordance with classification requirements. We have been very pleased with the entire process, with GMS Endeavour now operational at the Hornsea Project One wind farm.”Fabricated on the banks of the River Tyne and assembled at Osbit’s facility at the Port of Blyth in North East England, the 26.4 metre tower system was delivered within a five-month project timeframe, as part of the vessel’s mobilisation programme.Osbit’s engineers also completed the installation of the boat landing system on GMS Endeavour at Port of Blyth. The installation took place ahead of GMS Endeavour’s deployment to support Hornsea Project One offshore wind farm, which is located 120 kilometres off the Yorkshire coast. The vessel is providing accommodation and access to substations for technicians working on the wind farm project.A video of the load out and installation of the boat landing system can be viewed in the video below.<span data-mce-type=”bookmark” style=”display: inline-block; width: 0px; overflow: hidden; line-height: 0;” class=”mce_SELRES_start”></span>last_img read more

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Shearwater inks seismic survey deals in Mediterranean Sea and SE Asia

first_imgSeismic services specialist Shearwater GeoServices has been awarded 3D surveys in the Mediterranean and South East Asia.Polar Duchess seismic vessel / Credit: GC Rieber ShippingGC Rieber Shipping, a 50% owner of Shearwater has said that new contracts will add seven vessel months to the current backlog. The surveys will be starting in the first half of Q4 2018. The Mediterranean survey will take approximately two months, and the South East Asia surveys lasting 5 months.“We are pleased to be awarded these surveys firming up the backlog over the 2018/19 winter season, after we have seen utilization of 85% and transit of 15% for the first three quarters of 2018”, said Irene Waage Basili, Shearwater CEO.The survey in the Mediterranean area covers approximately 1,300 square kilometers and will utilize the Polar Empress.The contract in South East Asia covers two survey areas, totaling over 8,000 square kilometers, and will be conducted by the Polar Duchess vessel.last_img read more

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‘Illegal cockfighting’ lands 2 men in jail

first_imgILOILO City – Two persons were caught engaging in illegal cockfighting in Barangay San Ambrosio, Igbaras, Iloilo. Recovered from the suspects around 1:15 p.m. on July 26 were four game fowls and P200 bet money. The suspects were detained in the custodial facility of the Igbaras municipal police station, facing charges for violation of Presidential Decree 449, or the Cockfighting Law of 1974./PN Police identified them as 57-year-old Hermogenes Elizarde and 37-year-old Tomas Eugerio – all residents of the village.last_img read more