[Video] ‘Gangster-like demands’: The US should push forward with a strong…

first_imgAnalysis & Opinion AvatarThae Yong Ho Facebook Twitter Analysis & Opinion SHARE Editor’s Note: Thae Yong Ho was serving as North Korea’s deputy ambassador to the United Kingdom when he chose to defect with his family to South Korea in 2016. Following the recent release of his book, “Cypher of the Third-Floor Secretariat,” and his departure from the Institute for National Security Strategy (INSS), he has committed himself to improving the outlook for those still living in the DPRK. His current efforts focus on information sharing and the power of education to effect change.As one of the highest-ranking diplomats to ever defect, Thae has teamed up with Daily NK and its broader media consortium, Unification Media Group, for a weekly series to share his unparalleled insight into the North Korean system, ethos, and strategic thinking, while unpacking his vision for peace on the Korean Peninsula.Transcript (filmed on July 11):The largely anticipated visit to North Korea by US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, ended of course with no concrete results.Pompeo emphasized the success of his visit to North Korea stating that the talks had made progress and that a “working level” group would be formed to push ahead with negotiations for denuclearization.On the other hand, the North Korean Foreign Ministry openly criticized the visit stating that it pushed the current US-North Korea relations to a dangerous brink, in which North Korea may even change its mind on denuclearization.We can see that Kim Jong Un,  who made a brisk visit to meet President Moon at Panmunjeom and sent Kim Yong Chol to Washington to beg for the summit in the midst of Trump’s sudden cancellation,  has now finally caught his breath and is feeling a bit more relaxed.With the support of an allied army in China, and the initial success of both the inter-Korean and US-North Korea summit, Kim Jong Un has bought a bit of time and can sit comfortably for a while.The up-side to all this is that through the North Korean Foreign Ministry’s discourse we are able to see North Korea’s position on the “phased and simultaneous steps” of denuclearization.North Korea’s demand is that according to the outcome of the US-North Korea Agreement in which North Korea insists on regime stability first then denuclearization, the US should agree to an announcement of the end of the Korean War in return for the destruction of ICBM engine test-sites.In other words, North Korea’s argument is that a detailed denuclearization process can only be discussed together with the reduction of sanctions and establishment of peace structures after the announcement of the end of the war.Additionally, North Korea considers the repatriation of the remains of US soldiers killed in the Korean War as a service to pave the way for the announcement of the end of the war.  This is far from how the US sees it.As the US has already temporarily suspended the joint military exercises, the announcement of the end of the war can only be possible when North Korea begins a more concrete denuclearization process such as reporting the location of nuclear facilities and amount of nuclear material.I suspect that North Korea is trying to make the implementation of the denuclearization as complex as possible so that it is able to get what it needs at every level until it reaches the final stages of denuclearization where it will decide to bail.The fundamental difference between the US and North Korea on denuclearization that had until now been covered by a veil, has now been uncovered.North Korea’s Foreign Ministry emphasized that the main spirit of the “US-North Korea Summit was a trust-building and that CVID by the US is a gangster-like demand.”This shows once again the importance of every word and arrangement of sentences in agreements signed by the heads of state, and how much it influences the detailed steps in the implementation process.Teams of experts are always involved in the preparation of North Korea’s statements before it is presented to Kim Jong Un to be approved.  That is how important each word and sentence is in a North Korean piece of text.Not only did the Trump-Kim summit fail to draw a roadmap for North Korea’s denuclearization process but it surrendered the US policy of ‘denuclearization process first then dialogue’ and codified ‘trust-building first, then denuclearization.’As such, North Korea will bring out this agreement whenever it has future negotiations and put the United States in the corner; and it won’t be easy for the US to grab hold of the reigns again at the negotiation table.However, the US still has a powerful negotiation card- sanctions.At this moment in time, Kim Jong Un is working hard to announce the declaration of the end of the war with the US and have the sanctions lifted before September 9th, the 70th anniversary of the Foundation of North Korea to show the North Korean people that he is an almighty leader who can make the impossible possible.Thus, Kim Jong Un will push to keep the current momentum of dialogue with the US.While the statement from the Foreign Ministry may criticize Pompeo, the spokesman’s ending stating that “we still cherish our good faith in President Trump”, clearly shows Kim Jong Un’s uneasiness of Trump’s unpredictability that may lead to a break in the negotiations.As such, it is incredibly important how the US goes forward with its tactics.Right now, neither the US nor South Korea have publicly announced the details of North Korea’s denuclearization process.South Korea has stated that it is using the improvement of inter-Korean relations as an incentive for denuclearization while the US simply has an ambiguous plan of using the sanctions card if things do not go their way.The US and South Korea must now give a clear response to the North Korean Foreign Ministry’s statement of claiming that the US made ‘gangster-like demands.’The US and South Korea should clarify a detailed plan to trade the demand of an announcement of the end of the war and make it clear that if such an offer by US and South Korea is not met not only will the declaration plan be scrapped, but the sanctions will also remain.The US should not show its uneasiness about trying to achieve something with North Korea before its midterm elections in November.There’s a saying in Korean that the thirsty man will dig the well first.It has been the essence of North Korea’s diplomacy that it returns to the dialogue table when it is pushed in corner and leaves the table when it is relieved from difficulty.South Korea should not leave the issue of denuclearization to the US but avail itself of every opportunity to demand the denuclearization whenever it engages in North Korea. Analysis & Opinion By Thae Yong Ho – 2018.07.12 5:16pm center_img Is Nuclear Peace with North Korea Possible? Tracking the “unidentified yellow substance” being dried out near the Yongbyon Nuclear Center Analysis & Opinion RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR [Video] ‘Gangster-like demands’: The US should push forward with a strong denuclearization proposal Pence Cartoon: “KOR-US Karaoke”last_img read more

Lifecos see huge rise in insurance policy sales

first_img Manulife, Sun Life report modest impact from Hong Kong turmoil Insurers experiencing big drop in sales this year Megan Harman Sales of life insurance policies spiked in the fourth quarter (Q4) of 2016 as Canadians scrambled to get policies in place in advance of the new, more restrictive tax rules that kicked in on Jan. 1. Sun Life Financial buying Pinnacle Care International Share this article and your comments with peers on social media Manulife Canada CEO sees Apple and Netflix as competitors as insurance evolves Quarterly earnings reports from Canada’s major life insurers reveal that sales of individual life insurance policies in Canada were considerably higher in 2016 vs. 2015, with a particularly pronounced bump in Q4 sales compared with the same period the previous year. At Toronto-based Manulife Financial Corp., for example, retail insurance sales in Q4 were $94 million, up by 92% from Q4 2015, driven by higher universal life (UL) sales. “Some of our sales were a little elevated on the retail side because of the tax-exempt rule changes that were coming through, so we saw a bit of a fire sale happening there,” said Marianne Harrison, president and CEO of Manulife Canada, during the company’s Q4 earnings conference call on Feb. 9. New rules that kicked in at the beginning of January have resulted in substantially less room for clients to hold tax-exempt investments in permanent life insurance policies, among other things. Read: UL to take a big hit As such, insurers have been forced to eliminate features and raise premiums on many of their permanent life insurance products and, in some cases, discontinue products altogether to accommodate the new rules. As policies purchased by the end of 2016 were grandfathered under the previous tax rules, many advisors and clients rushed to get policies in place before the end of the year. At Winnipeg-based Great-West Lifeco Inc. (GWL), individual life insurance sales in Canada more than doubled in Q4, reaching $341 million, compared with $137 million in the corresponding quarter the previous year. The increase was driven largely by participating life sales, which increased by 183% year-over-year while UL and term life insurance sales increased by 73%. Toronto-based Sun Life Financial Inc. also doubled its individual insurance sales in Q4, year-over-year, to reach $203 million. At Quebec City-based Industrial Alliance Insurance and Financial Services Inc. (IA), total retail insurance sales in Canada amounted to $71.4 million in Q4, up by 37% from the same period the previous year. Similarly, Kingston, Ont.-based Empire Life Insurance Co. also saw a boost in individual insurance sales in Q4, despite its move to discontinue UL policy sales during the quarter in response to the low interest rate environment and the tax changes. The company reported on Feb. 24 that individual insurance annualized premium sales increased by 17.5% in Q4, compared with Q4 2015, driven by higher sales of participating products. The increase in Canadian sales was also noticeable for 2016 overall: Manulife’s retail insurance sales rose by 30% to $235 million in 2016 over 2015; GWL’s individual insurance sales rose by 48% to $785 million compared with the previous year; Sun Life’s individual insurance sales for the full year were up by 36%; and IA’s individual insurance sales jumped by 20% in Canada. Waterloo, Ont.-based Equitable Life of Canada also reported a record year for individual sales, which reached $93 million, up by 60% from 2015. Life insurance sales in 2017 are likely to be considerably slower compared with the exceptional sales boost in the lead up to the tax changes. However, companies such as Sun Life are optimistic that 2017 will be another strong year despite the new rules. “We’ve got very strong underlying sales momentum in our retail life business in Canada, even when you take the sort of spike effect out,” said Kevin Dougherty, president of Sun Life Financial Canada, during the company’s Q4 earnings conference call on Feb. 16. Sun Life made a variety of major changes to its product lineup and underwriting process in advance of the tax changes, he noted. “We’re probably the only provider in Canada that took the opportunity of the tax changes to effectively relaunch our entire life insurance product line,” Dougherty said. “So, we [are] very optimistic about 2017 and how our product line is positioned to sell in what will be, hopefully, a better underlying interest rate environment as well.” Photo copyright: flytnt/123RF Facebook LinkedIn Twitter Related news Keywords Life insurance industryCompanies Equitable Life of Canada, Great-West Lifeco Inc., Industrial Alliance Insurance and Financial Services, Manulife Financial Corp., Sun Life Financial Inc. last_img read more

New campaign urges Australians to protect themselves against cybercrime

first_imgNew campaign urges Australians to protect themselves against cybercrime Joint media releaseMinister for Home Affairs, the Hon Peter Dutton MPAustralians are being urged to strengthen their cyber defences and be alert to online threats through a new national cyber security campaign.The new Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) cyber security campaign provides easy-to-follow advice for Australian families, business and organisations on how to protect themselves from cyber threats.Minister for Defence, Senator the Hon Linda Reynolds CSC today launched the new ACSC campaign which will initially run on social media and digital platforms.“Cybercriminals are relentless, operating around the clock and around the world, in a bid to steal the data and money from Australian businesses and families,” said Minister Reynolds.“Australians are reporting more than one cybercrime every 10 minutes, making it more important than ever that we all remain alert to the threat of cybercrime.“I urge all Australians to go online and visit cyber.gov.au for tips on how to act now and stay secure. Even small steps can make a big difference.”The Morrison Government’s $1.67 billion investment in the Cyber Security Strategy 2020 compliments the act now and stay secure online national campaign.Minister for Home Affairs Peter Dutton said having a strategy as a country to deal effectively with online threats is essential to keeping Australians safe from cybercriminals.“The Strategy ensures our agencies have the powers and capabilities they need to identify and disrupt threats to the safety of Australians – particularly children, the most vulnerable members of our community,” Mr Dutton said.“The Strategy commits $124.9 million to strengthen law enforcement’s counter cybercrime capabilities, including an investment of $89.9 million to equip the Australian Federal Police with an extra 100 cyber detectives who will identify and target cyber criminals.“Even with these measures in place, all Australians need to know how to safeguard themselves against cyber security threats. The Strategy includes a range of measures to encourage safe and secure online behaviours.”The Head of the Australian Cyber Security Centre, Ms Abigail Bradshaw CSC, said the campaign will see continuous and practical cyber security advice provided to all Australians, beginning with ransomware.“Ransomware is a type of malware that locks up your files until a ransom is paid. Criminals can steal a copy of files to coerce you to pay the ransom by threatening to publicly leak or sell your data,” Ms Bradshaw said.“New technologies in our pockets, homes and offices are bringing huge benefits, but as soon as these devices connect to the internet they become vulnerable to compromise.”The cyber security campaign also aims to encourage more Australians to report cyber incidents through the ACSC’s ReportCyber tool, which provides a single online portal for individuals and business to report cyber incidents.“This Government is committed to doing all we can to keep our nation safe. Australia’s Cyber Security Strategy 2020 represents our nation’s largest ever investment in cyber security and expands the cyber security capabilities and assistance provided through the Australian Signals Directorate and the ACSC.“But cyber security is a whole of community endeavour and we need all Australians to play a role in combatting malicious cyber activity”By reporting cybercrime, you are helping the ACSC build a collective threat picture that ultimately helps keep Australians more secure,” Minister Reynolds said.The ACSC is the trusted authority for cyber security advice and offers support to all Australians. /Public Release. This material comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. View in full here. Why?Well, unlike many news organisations, we have no sponsors, no corporate or ideological interests. We don’t put up a paywall – we believe in free access to information of public interest. Media ownership in Australia is one of the most concentrated in the world (Learn more). Since the trend of consolidation is and has historically been upward, fewer and fewer individuals or organizations control increasing shares of the mass media in our country. According to independent assessment, about 98% of the media sector is held by three conglomerates. This tendency is not only totally unacceptable, but also to a degree frightening). Learn more hereWe endeavour to provide the community with real-time access to true unfiltered news firsthand from primary sources. It is a bumpy road with all sorties of difficulties. We can only achieve this goal together. Our website is open to any citizen journalists and organizations who want to contribute, publish high-quality insights or send media releases to improve public access to impartial information. You and we have the right to know, learn, read, hear what and how we deem appropriate.Your support is greatly appreciated. All donations are kept completely private and confidential.Thank you in advance!Tags:army, Australia, Australian, Australian federal police, business, children, community, cyber security, cyber threats, Cybercrime, Defence, Government, Home Affairs, Internet, Investment, Morrison Government, navy, Peter Dutton, social medialast_img read more

Resilience Grants for Bushfire Recovery

first_imgResilience Grants for Bushfire Recovery Hawkesbury City Council is offering grants of $500 to $5,000 to support communities impacted by the 2019-2020 Summer Bushfires. The funding has been made available through the NSW Government’s Bushfire Community Recovery and Resilience Fund.The grants are to support community groups, joint organisations and not-for-profit groups to undertake projects that enhance social recovery and preparedness activities.Projects should be community-led events or programs for grass-roots activities that contribute to community recovery and/or resilience including projects that support community wellbeing.Applications for Round 1 will be received up until Sunday, 28 February 2021. Further opportunities will also be available in two more rounds in April and June. Go to https://bit.ly/2LlLVyL /Public Release. This material comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. View in full here. Why?Well, unlike many news organisations, we have no sponsors, no corporate or ideological interests. We don’t put up a paywall – we believe in free access to information of public interest. Media ownership in Australia is one of the most concentrated in the world (Learn more). Since the trend of consolidation is and has historically been upward, fewer and fewer individuals or organizations control increasing shares of the mass media in our country. According to independent assessment, about 98% of the media sector is held by three conglomerates. This tendency is not only totally unacceptable, but also to a degree frightening). Learn more hereWe endeavour to provide the community with real-time access to true unfiltered news firsthand from primary sources. It is a bumpy road with all sorties of difficulties. We can only achieve this goal together. Our website is open to any citizen journalists and organizations who want to contribute, publish high-quality insights or send media releases to improve public access to impartial information. You and we have the right to know, learn, read, hear what and how we deem appropriate.Your support is greatly appreciated. All donations are kept completely private and confidential.Thank you in advance!Tags:bushfires, community, council, Government, Hawkesbury, Hawkesbury City Council, local council, NSW, resilience, wellbeinglast_img read more

Opinion: Questioning the Camas Roundabout

first_imgCamas resident John Ley shares his research into the $8 million Camas Lake Road/Everett RoundaboutEditor’s note: Opinions expressed in this report are those of the author alone and do not reflect the editorial position of ClarkCountyToday.comBy John LeyIn a previous column regarding government spending in the era of COVID-19 and the shutdown of our economy, I asked why state and local governments weren’t cutting costs? We knew taxpayer “revenue,” taxes paid to the government, are in decline. I offered praise for the city of Camas that “put on hold” the construction of an $8 million roundabout. I hoped it was a first step in fiscal prudence, with more belt tightening to come. Sadly, I was wrong. By April 15, the  construction was allowed to proceed.John LeyJohn LeySo much for fiscal conservatism and prudence.This caused me to dig deeper into the Camas roundabout. What I have learned is stunning. Consultants are getting 25 percent of the $8 million total cost. A $2 million roundabout was recommended as a cheaper alternative to a $5 million lane addition. A half dozen other roundabouts have been built for $2 million to $3 million in the area.Vetting the proposalA review of city documents provided an amazing discovery. In 2012, a taxpayer funded consultant analyzed the Lake-Everett (SR 500) intersection. It was part of a broader 2035 transportation needs study for the city, in preparation for the development of the Northshore of Lacamas Lake. DKS Associates recommended a $2 million roundabout as the cheaper alternative for Lake-Everett.  They indicated a $5 million lane addition option was “extremely costly.”On page 35 of the 58 page DKS document was the following: DKS indicates a new third lane on Everett would address the capacity deficiency. However it would be “extremely costly, potentially more than $5 million.” Instead, DKS recommended a roundabout for $2 million.“Due to a bridge immediately north of the intersection, the addition of an additional southbound lane (which would address the capacity deficiency) would be extremely costly, potentially more than $5 million,” the DKS document stated.blankYet today, Camas is spending $8 million for a roundabout. Sadly, the bridge just north of that intersection hasn’t been addressed. The city expects replacing the bridge will cost over $9 million. That two-lane bridge (without shoulders), is the real bottleneck and limiting factor on Everett St. (SR 500).What is the cost of a roundabout?During a citizen town hall and open house, staff mentioned Camas had spent $2 million on the roundabout at 6th and Northwood. This is the entrance/exit to SR-14. Roundabouts can be done inexpensively.blankImage courtesy of Google MapsWashougal recently built two roundabouts on SR-14 for $4.4 million, or $2.2 million each. Camas city staff provided me a cost comparison of various roundabouts.blankGraphic courtesy of city of CamasYou’ll note the $2.3 million for a 2017 roundabout and $4.4 million for two roundabouts in 2019.One year earlierAt a Feb. 19, 2019 city council workshop, PBS Consultant Greg Jellison laid out seven options for the intersection. There were three “signal” options, three “roundabout” options, and a “no-build” option. The consultant told the members of the Camas City Council his firm had not yet finished its cost estimates. Yet the next week, Camas was hosting its first open house for citizens.During the presentation, the consultant asked the council “do any of these criteria have a higher priority than others?”  He went on to ask: “maybe safety, the schedule, the impact to the existing bridge, the cost? Is there anything that stands out to you that maybe is a higher priority?” He later added: “we want to hear if anything is a higher priority.”Three different times, he solicited the council’s “higher priority.” Unbelievably, there was no response by the mayor or city council. One member wanted to know what the people thought before she went public with her opinion.Don’t forget that in the middle of this process, the Camas City Council made a hasty decision to put a $78 million pool bond on the ballot. In Nov. 2019, the outrageous proposal was rejected by nearly 90 percent of Camas voters. Additionally, a write-in candidate unseated the incumbent mayor in the November general election.Three open house events were held over the next 11 months. I attended the final one on Jan. 23, 2020. Costs of the various options were never mentioned, as the city and their highly paid consultant presented their final choice. Citizens had to ask about the funding, i.e. how much was borrowed, and what the terms of the loan were.On March 16, members of the Camas City Council approved a contract for $5,269,528.33 to construct a roundabout at Lake Rd & Everett. Included in the council resolution, was approval for “up to 10%” in cost overruns — $526,952.The staff document dated March 2, 2020 showed a total cost of $8.1 million.blankGraphic courtesy of city of CamasMore amazingly, staff recommended the “consultant” firm PBS Engineering be awarded a 75 percent increase in their fee, adding $848,374 to the cost of the project. Not a single question was asked by the mayor or a city council member regarding this huge increase.blankGraphic courtesy of city of CamasHow on earth can a consultant be paid nearly 25 percent of an $8 million construction contract?blankHere is the graphic of the Lake-Everett roundabout proposal. Graphic courtesy of city of CamasDuring the March 16 City Council deliberations, there was almost no discussion about the project before the council unanimously approved the $5.2-million contract with Clark and Sons of Battle Ground. Fortunately, Council Member Bonnie Carter asked that the agenda item be removed from the Consent Agenda. Otherwise, it would have been approved in a single vote covering multiple items.During the discussion, Councilor Carter didn’t say anything. That is curious, as one would normally assume the person making the request had questions to ask, or comments to enter into the public record, before the vote. Councilor Don Cheney indicated he’d never seen anything “vetted as thorough” as this project.Funding issuesHow does the city council expect to pay for the $8 million roundabout? Other than a $3.3-million grant from the state, they borrowed all the money. They haven’t saved any funds to pay for the project. They didn’t have a “down payment,” which is what citizens generally do when buying a home or a new car. The taxpayers portion is all on a credit card.From the handout offered at the Jan. 23 open house.“The City received a $1 million low-interest loan from the Public Works Board for the initial design and pre-construction. For construction, approximately $3.3 million in funding comes from a Transportation Improvement Board (TIB) grant, and the remaining approximately $3.7 million from a low-interest loan from the Public Works Board.”Yes, that totals $4.7 million in borrowed money our taxes will have to pay back.Fixing the bridge is too expensive?Just north of the Lake Rd/Everett intersection, is a two-lane bridge crossing the water connection between Lacamas Lake and Round Lake. The state has mandated it be raised by roughly seven feet to better allow floating debris to pass under the bridge during high water situations.blankSo why not one, complete project?From the city’s FAQ document at the Jan. 23 open house:“Why was replacement of the existing bridge north of the Lake Road/Everett Street intersection not included? It should all be fixed now, not later. It comes down to funding and timing. A bridge replacement is anticipated to more than double the construction cost and construction time of the project. Per the community survey, a timely remedy for the congestion problem is strongly preferred by the community. The City has acquired the funds for the intersection improvements. However, the City anticipates that it would take much longer to acquire funding for the bridge replacement, which would stall the entire project significantly.”That means the city currently expects to have to spend roughly $10 million to elevate and replace the bridge. They said: “double.”Camas citizens and taxpayers need to understand that the $8 million roundabout is just one part of a much larger transportation issue on Everett — SR-500. Replacing that bridge will likely be a 4-lane wide bridge, potentially with sidewalks and perhaps bike lanes. It will not be cheap. While we would hope the state would pay a portion of the cost, (since it is State Route 500), Camas taxpayers could be on the hook for the majority of it.The city has chosen to take two bites of the apple. Fix the Lake-Everett interchange now and replace the bridge choke-point  later. What is the cost of that decision? We don’t know. We don’t know the cost of each of the six options shown on a city handout. It may or may not be a smart choice. But we do know we are now on the hook for an extremely expensive $8 million roundabout, with a consultant getting nearly $2 million for this boondoggle.Camas citizens need cost-efficient transportation solutions, first and foremost. Taxpayer transportation dollars are scarce and getting scarcer. Our community has many transportation needs.The city is pushing the development of the Northshore of Lacamas Lake. They propose closing Leadbetter Rd., which traverses the north side of the lake. How much will a new series of roads and infrastructure cost? The 2012 DKS planning document estimated $62 million for roads. With the city spending four times the DKS suggested $2 million on the roundabout, it is likely the Northshore development could cost taxpayers over $200 million.The citizens should be told and fully understand the complete picture, including the costs and ramifications of those choices. Especially in the COVID-19 era, when our economy has ground to a halt, with record levels of unemployment.For now, it appears the “extremely costly” $5 million added lane would have been a bargain compared to the $8 million roundabout. Of course, if the city hadn’t paid consultants nearly $2 million, this outrageously expensive project might only be ridiculously expensive. Especially when the city had designed and built several other roundabouts in the recent past.John Ley is a Camas resident who is an advocate for responsive and responsible government.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textTags:CamasClark CountyLatestshare 0 Previous : Workforce Southwest Washington partners with Comcast to keep vulnerable populations connected Next : City of Washougal offers update on its COVID-19 responseAdvertisementThis is placeholder text Opinion: Questioning the Camas RoundaboutPosted by ClarkCountyToday.comDate: Thursday, May 7, 2020in: Columns, Opinionshare 0 last_img read more

Heavy Rain is expected for Upcoming Days

first_imgRelatedHeavy Rain is expected for Upcoming Days RelatedHeavy Rain is expected for Upcoming Days Advertisements FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail The Meteorological Service of Jamaica, in a release yesterday, said an Area of Low Pressure is developing over the Caribbean Sea, South of Jamaica. This system is expected to bring an increase in rainfall activity in the coming days with some increase in intensity as of Thursday.  Expect periods of showers and thunderstorms, which could be heavy at times, to affect most parishes starting on Thursday and continuing through the weekend.  This system could possibly result in some flash flooding; however, the Meteorological Service will continue to monitor the progress of this system. RelatedHeavy Rain is expected for Upcoming Days Issued by: The Meteorological Service of Jamaica Heavy Rain is expected for Upcoming Days EnvironmentMay 31, 2011last_img read more

MNS Hails Staff Members’ GSAT Successes

first_imgRelatedMNS Hails Staff Members’ GSAT Successes MNS Hails Staff Members’ GSAT Successes EducationSeptember 18, 2011 RelatedMNS Hails Staff Members’ GSAT Successes Advertisements FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail KINGSTON — The Ministry of National Security presented gifts to the children of eight employees, who were successful in this year’s Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT), at an awards function at the Ministry, New Kingston, on Thursday September 15. The brainchild of Acting Permanent Secretary, Dianne McIntosh, four boys and four girls, whose ages range between 11 and 13 years, were presented with gift packages and certificates in recognition of their achievements. The recipients were: Breanna Davis, who now attends St. Andrew High School; Andre Lattibeaudiere,  Jamaica College; Jazsmin McKenzie, St. Hugh’s High School; Nelissa Moffat, Ardenne High School; Aaliyah Morgan, St. Catherine High School; Nicardo Murray, Wolmer’s High School for Boys; Giovanni Reid, Calabar High School; and Christopher Harriot, Jr., Kingston College. Giovanni Reid was the only recipient unable to attend, but his packages were accepted by his mother, Georgiana Reid, on his behalf. Mrs. McIntosh noted that the youngsters had studied hard at the primary/preparatory level, and had now been favoured with high school places for their dedication.  “Whether you have made it to a school of your choice or not, you are well on your way to great things. It is now up to you to make it happen,” she stated. She also commended the parents’ input in their preparation. Education Director of the East Jamaica Conference of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, Dr. Donna Brown, commended the Ministry’s initiative, describing it as an “awesome programme”.               Noting that the Ministry was a “good family” to be a part of, Dr. Brown said it was commendable that they took the time to recognise not only staff, but their children as well. “People are the greatest resources that we have. And if we don’t allow people to feel like they are valuable assets in the organisation, then we have lost it,” she contended. Responding on behalf of the awardees, Andre Lattibeaudiere, expressed gratitude for the Ministry’s gesture, and assured that the recipients would work to the best of their abilities, at high school. By Douglas Mcintosh, JIS Reporter RelatedMNS Hails Staff Members’ GSAT Successeslast_img read more

Adequate Security Arrangements In Place For Election Day

first_imgAdvertisements The Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) is assuring that adequate security arrangements are in place for Election Day on February 25.Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP), Terrence Bent, said the police will be deployed at locations across the island to ensure that the process goes smoothly.He is urging persons casting their vote to do so in an orderly manner, and observe the directives of all duly authorised personnel working at the polling stations.“Obey the written instructions from the electoral officers and all presiding officers because their job is essential in ensuring that the election is run smoothly,” he pointed out.ACP Bent is also advising voters to leave the vicinity of the polling station after casting their vote and is reminding licensed firearm holders to leave their weapons at home on Election Day.“The law requires that persons with firearms do not take them on the road on Election Day… persons with licensed firearms should not take them to the polling locations,” he stated.In addition, he said persons participating in political motorcades should refrain from suspending their bodies from moving vehicles.“We find that when persons protrude from vehicles, the risk of serious injury or death is increased. We ask that they remain inside of the vehicle. We ask that they keep their arms and heads inside the vehicle to prevent any injury,” he cautioned.ACP Bent further appealed for persons to desist from wearing masks and covering their faces with shirts at political meetings, noting that this poses a challenge in identifying persons, who commit criminal acts.Commanders of the JCF Area Four Divisions are conducting information sessions in their respective communities to educate members about the guidelines on Election Day.These meetings are being conducted in Kingston Eastern, Kingston Central, Kingston Western, St. Andrew Central and St. Andrew South. Adequate Security Arrangements In Place For Election Day Election 2016February 18, 2016Written by: Rochelle Williams RelatedPrime Minister Simpson Miller Nominated Story HighlightsThe Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) is assuring that adequate security arrangements are in place for Election Day on February 25.Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP), Terrence Bent, said the police will be deployed at locations across the island to ensure that the process goes smoothly.He is urging persons casting their vote to do so in an orderly manner, and observe the directives of all duly authorised personnel working at the polling stations.center_img RelatedOAS Observation Mission Coming for General Election RelatedCandidates in Hanover Sign General Elections Political Code of Conduct FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail last_img read more

Fed expects to keep its key rate near zero through 2023

first_imgHomeNewsFed expects to keep its key rate near zero through 2023 Mar. 18, 2021 at 6:20 amNewsFed expects to keep its key rate near zero through 2023Associated Press3 months agoNews CHRISTOPHER RUGABER, AP Economics WriterThe Federal Reserve foresees the economy accelerating quickly this year but still expects to keep its benchmark interest rate pinned near zero through 2023, despite concerns in financial markets about potential higher inflation.The Fed also said Wednesday that it foresees the economy growing at a 6.5% pace this year, up from a previous projection in December of 4.2%. It also expects inflation to reach 2.4% in 2021, above its target of 2%, but expects inflation to fall back to around 2% in 2022.The central bank also said it would continue to buy $120 billion in bonds each month to keep longer-term borrowing costs down.The decision comes as Chair Jerome Powell faces a delicate balancing act: The economy is clearly improving. But if Powell sounds too optimistic, investors might assume the Fed will reverse its low-rate policies prematurely. That could send bond yields rising and potentially weaken the economy as borrowing becomes costlier for companies and households.Yet if Powell sounds worried that the job market is recovering only slowly, it might spark concerns that the Fed won’t be watchful enough about inflation pressures. That perception, too, could send bond yields rising as investors anticipate rising inflation.Complicating the picture, the Fed last year announced a policy change in how it manages interest rates by saying it plans to keep rates near zero “for some time” even after inflation has exceeded its 2% target level. The change meant the Fed is prepared to tolerate a higher inflation rate than it generally had in the past.Previously, the Fed has often raised rates on just the prospect that inflation would rise, a policy that carried the risk of choking off a recovery.This week’s Fed policy meeting comes as the economy’s outlook has improved significantly since it last met in late January. Job gains accelerated in February, sales at retail stores jumped after $600 relief checks were distributed at the start of the year and President Joe Biden signed his economic relief package into law last week. Average daily COVID infections have also dropped precipitously, and vaccinations have accelerated, raising hopes that Americans will increasingly travel, shop, eat out and spend freely after a year of virus-induced restraint.As a consequence, economists have been upgrading their outlooks, with many predicting that the economy will expand as much as 7% for all of 2021. That would be the fastest annual growth since 1984.The brighter outlook has sent the yield on the 10-year Treasury note climbing as investors have dumped bonds, which are typically safe-haven investments during downturns. The yield on the 10-year topped 1.62% in trading Tuesday; it had been below 1% at the end of last year.Still, the job market has a long way to go to a full recovery. With unemployment at 6.2%, the economy still has 9.5 million fewer jobs than it did before the pandemic struck a year ago.Tags :Newsshare on Facebookshare on Twitteradd a commentSMMUSD staff call for Hero PayUS jobless claims rise to 770,000 with layoffs still highYou Might Also LikeFeaturedNewsBobadilla rejects Santa Monica City Manager positionMatthew Hall5 hours agoNewsCouncil picks new City ManagerBrennon Dixson16 hours agoFeaturedNewsProtesting parents and Snapchat remain in disagreement over child protection policiesClara Harter16 hours agoFeaturedNewsDowntown grocery to become mixed use developmenteditor16 hours agoNewsBruised but unbowed, meme stock investors are back for moreAssociated Press16 hours agoNewsWedding boom is on in the US as vendors scramble to keep upAssociated Press16 hours agolast_img read more

Argentina plans 4G spectrum sale

first_img Tags Richard Handford Argentina outlines digital agenda progress Previous ArticleNTT Docomo targets June launch for VoLTENext ArticleSamsung set for ‘Prime’ S5 release – reports ArgentinaRegulatory Home Argentina plans 4G spectrum sale Richard is the editor of Mobile World Live’s money channel and a contributor to the daily news service. He is an experienced technology and business journalist who previously worked as a freelancer for many publications over the last decade including… Read more Costa Rica accused of throttling fledgling 4G Telefonica expects declines in Argentine earnings Author Related AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInLinkedInShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to MoreAddThisMore 14 MAY 2014 Argentina is to launch a tender for 4G radio frequencies later in 2014, a contest open to foreign bidders as well as the country’s mobile incumbents.The frequencies in the proposed auction are at 700 MHz and 1.7-2.1 GHz and the winning bidders have five years to complete deployment of their 4G networks.In pole position for any bid are the country’s four existing operators: Telecom Argentina-backed Personal alongside the two stalwarts of Latin American mobile industry – Telefonica’s Movistar and America Movil’s Claro – and Nextel (NII).In addition to the 4G spectrum, the government plans to sell off the remaining 3G spectrum blocks in the 1900 MHz and 850 MHz frequency bands, which were assigned to Arsat in 2012.According to GSMA Intelligence figures, Argentina has a total of 63.9 million mobile connections (end Q1, 2014 figures), of which roughly one third are 3G.The government is eager to see higher penetration of mobile broadband, firstly with 3G and then ultimately via 4G.But the country’s Economy Minister Axel Kicillof said those who win spectrum “will have to commit to substantial investments in infrastructure,” and that ” [they] will have a strong regulation by the state because it is a service with few operators in the market. “last_img read more