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Planners put out-of-town offices under threat

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M56 corridor: Talk of the towns

first_imgTo access this article REGISTER NOWWould you like print copies, app and digital replica access too? SUBSCRIBE for as little as £5 per week. Would you like to read more?Register for free to finish this article.Sign up now for the following benefits:Four FREE articles of your choice per monthBreaking news, comment and analysis from industry experts as it happensChoose from our portfolio of email newsletterslast_img

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Indonesian businesses look to Singapore, Malaysia for COVID-19 measures

first_imgThe Indonesian government is under pressure from both the World Health Organization and local communities to intensify its response toward the COVID-19 outbreak, particularly because the country’s largest annual holiday exodus, Idul Fitri, is just around the corner.Read also: Investors question government’s transparency in handling COVID-19 crisisIndonesia has so far responded by urging the public to practice social distancing, imposing temporary travel bans and shutting down schools in certain regions. On Thursday, President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo ordered mass testing in an effort to contain the spread of the disease after saying on Monday that the government was “not leaning toward issuing a lockdown”.Singaporean National Development Minister Lawrence Wong, meanwhile, said on Tuesday that the government “was not planning” for a lockdown but also “can’t rule it out”. Topics : Shinta went on to say that Apindo members had begun rolling out work from home (WFH) protocols, introducing limiting office density, reducing face-to-face meetings and assigning fewer work trips in helping mitigate the pandemic.“WFH is mostly for administrative work. So, industries such as tourism, transportation and manufacturing are among those most affected yet not entirely able to execute WFH,” she noted.Instead, factories have introduced other safety measures, such as compulsory body temperature checks, requiring employees to wear gloves and installing hand sanitizer dispensers.Indonesian Food and Beverage Producers Association (Gapmmi) chairman Adhi Lukman said that a full lockdown — characterized by the closing of all shops, factories and transport hubs as implemented in Wuhan, China, in late January — would be problematic for local businesses.“A lockdown would be burdensome for enterprises because […] we would still have to pay taxes, bank interest rates and employee salaries,” he said.Read also: COVID-19: Does Indonesia need a lockdown? It depends on how you define itSuch expenses, he continued, would burden company cash flows even with several tax breaks introduced by the government to cushion the economic impacts of the virus.Adhi also commended Malaysia’s “restricted movement” policy as a workable example for Indonesia. Malaysia allows certain factories, supermarkets and banks to run even though its borders, schools and non-essential shops, such as entertainment facilities, are being forcibly closed for two weeks starting on Wednesday.In Indonesia, Adhi added that Gapmmi’s processed food supply was sufficient until June when most entrepreneurs expect the pandemic to die down. However, the association is experiencing shortages of locally sourced fresh produce such as sugar, beef, onion and salt.Members have resorted to importing the commodities from Australia, New Zealand, Vietnam, Thailand and “a little bit from” Brazil, among other countries.The State Logistics Agency (Bulog), which oversees the domestic food supplies, is similarly confident about rice supplies in Indonesia.Bulog’s operations and public service director, Tri Wahyudi Saleh, said on Tuesday that the agency had 1.5 million tons of rice in stock. He added that Bulog planned to acquire another 1.2 million tons during the March-April harvest season.“Our [rice] supply is safe until the end of the year,” he said as reported by kompas.com.The Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s (Kadin) deputy chairman for public policy, Raden Pardede, who is equally wary of a lockdown, emphasized that Indonesia could not fully copy Singapore’s response because it was an archipelago.Read also: ‘If not us, who else will do it?’: Sweat and tears of Indonesia’s COVID-19 nurses, doctors“Indonesia is a much more complex country. We need mitigation staging and strategies. We can start by looking at the differences between the spread [of COVID-19] in Java and outside Java,” he said, noting that if the outbreak worsened in Java, other islands could serve as substitute supply chains.The spread of COVID-19 has been more severe on Java Island, home to more than 90 percent of the country’s 309 confirmed COVID-19 infections as of Thursday, National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) data shows.Vincent Harijanto, a member of the Indonesian pharmaceutical association GP Farmasi, said on Wednesday last week that policy relaxations were needed in ensuring industry continuity. He gave an example of the Indonesian Food and Drug Monitoring Agency (BPOM), which recently began accepting photocopies and emails instead of original documents to simplify drug import procedures.“That is why we shouldn’t say ‘businesses are locked down’ but that ‘businesses still have an opportunity for growth’,” he remarked.Vincent estimated that GP Farmasi members had enough fast-moving pharmaceuticals to last through April and enough slow-moving stock until July, adding that Indonesia sourced around 85 percent of its raw pharmaceutical materials from China and India.center_img Indonesian businesses are looking at neighboring countries for coronavirus responses as Southeast Asia’s most populous country faces increasing pressure to escalate its own measures, including potentially locking down the economy.The Jakarta Post spoke to three business leaders who said a Singapore-like response, where the government allows businesses and factories to operate, was more ideal for local enterprises instead of a full lockdown. The city-state has focused on tighter border control, contact tracing, social distancing and expanding healthcare services to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.”The difference is that Indonesia is a big country, but we have to start with good virus testing protocols,” Indonesian Employers Association (Apindo) deputy chairwoman Shinta Kamdani said on Thursday. “And Singapore is a good example.”last_img read more

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South Africa virus cases rise over 300,000

first_imgSouth Africa’s coronavirus cases inched over 300,000 on Wednesday, the health ministry said, as the continent’s worst-affected country hurtles towards an expected peak of infections.”We have exceeded the 300,000 mark to reach a cumulative total of 311,049 confirmed COVID-19 cases in South Africa,” Health Minister Zweli Mkhize said in a statement.An additional 107 fatalities were also reported on Wednesday, bringing the total number of deaths up to 4,453. More than half of the country’s COVID-19 patients have recovered from the virus.”We are now facing a real rise in infections,” Ramaphosa said earlier on Wednesday, noting growing pressure on “challenged” health facilities.The president re-imposed a night curfew and a controversial alcohol sales ban on Sunday to ease pressure on hospitals.Those restrictions had been gradually lifted after a strict seven-week lockdown.”It gave us an opportunity to prepare, to prepare our health facilities to be able to deal and cope with the rising infections,” Ramaphosa assured.”Now that infections are rising our health facilities… face challenges,” he said, adding that alcohol sales had been suspended to limit the number of “people who go to hospital with trauma incidents”. Over 35 percent of cases were recorded in Gauteng province — South Africa’s financial hub and epicenter of the outbreak, which also accounts for the highest number of deaths.President Cyril Ramaphosa last week warned that the “coronavirus storm” South Africa faced was “far fiercer and more destructive than any we have known before”. The country is the hardest-hit in Africa, followed by Egypt with just under 85,000 confirmed cases and 4,067 deaths to date.South Africa’s mortality rate has remained low, however, at just under 1.5 percent on Wednesday.center_img Topics :last_img read more

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Jamie Redknapp on why Mikel Arteta picks Eddie Nketiah up front over Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang

first_img Metro Sport ReporterThursday 25 Jun 2020 7:19 pmShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link5.6kShares Jamie Redknapp on why Mikel Arteta picks Eddie Nketiah up front over Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang Advertisement Nketiah started through the middle on Thursday night (Picture: Getty)Jamie Redknapp believes Mikel Arteta is picking Eddie Nketiah ahead of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang up front for Arsenal because of his impressive workrate and compared the more experienced striker’s struggles to make the centre-forward spot his own to Sergio Aguero under Pep Guardiola. Guardiola, the Manchester City manager, often used to give Gabriel Jesus game time ahead of Aguero in his early days at the Etihad, but while there is still an element of rotation now, it’s clear that Aguero has become the main man once more. Redknapp believes it took Aguero time to ‘buy into’ Guardiola’s hard-working philosophy, where strikers chase down lost causes. AdvertisementAdvertisementArteta, who used to work under Guardiola at City, is in a similar predicament. ADVERTISEMENTWith Aubameyang’s future unclear, he has favoured Nketiah through the middle – using the Gabon international in a wide left role. And Redknapp thinks that Nketiah’s ability to press from the front – which led to his opener against Southampton following an error from goalkeeper Alex McCarthy – has seen him get the nod ahead of Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette – who was left on the bench. Aubameyang has been forced out wide (Picture: Getty)Redknppp told Sky Sports: ‘Work from the front, chase things down… It took a little while for Aguero to buy into it and I don’t know if Aubameyang at this age will be that striker still, especially if he doesn’t want to be at the club and he wants to go. ‘He thinks with Nketiah – he works hard for the team. It’s a midfielder’s dream, it’s a defender’s dream, when someone is just pickpocketing balls around the pitch and winning balls back. It’s fantastic. More: FootballRio Ferdinand urges Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to drop Manchester United starChelsea defender Fikayo Tomori reveals why he made U-turn over transfer deadline day moveMikel Arteta rates Thomas Partey’s chances of making his Arsenal debut vs Man City‘And he gets his reward. It’s not good goalkeeping, it’s not good from the defender as well. ‘But a lot of strikers would just leave it, they wouldn’t bother chasing lost causes, he did it and deserved that goal for that reason.’MORE: Kieran Tierney reveals how Arsenal players reacted to their dismal defeat at BrightonMORE: Claudio Bravo speaks out on his future amid Arsenal transfer interestFollow Metro Sport across our social channels, on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.For more stories like this, check our sport page. Comment Advertisementlast_img read more

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Partners Group teams up with Mizuho on private equity, infrastructure

first_imgSwiss investment manager Partners Group is teaming up with Japan’s Mizuho Financial Group to offer private equity and infrastructure products to the pensions market in Japan.Citing growing demand from Japanese pension funds for access to private market investments, Partners Group said it signed the agreement with the Japanese financial holding group on 9 January.Steffen Meister, partner and executive member of the firm’s board of directors, said: “We are very excited to partner with Mizuho Financial Group, one of Japan’s most respected and best-known financial institutions, to meet the growing demand for private equity and infrastructure investment opportunities seen from the country’s pension funds.”The two businesses formed a strong team together, he said, and would set up a successful range of private markets products. Partners Group said the deal was a business alliance agreement with Mizuho Financial Group and its subsidiary Mizuho Trust & Banking.Mizuho Trust provides pension trust and asset management.Under the terms of the pact, Mizuho Trust and Partners Group will jointly develop and distribute certain global private equity and infrastructure products within Japan’s pension market, the Swiss firm said.It said this would be the first time Mizuho offered global, private market investment products to its Japanese pension fund client base.The agreement gives MFG and Mizuho Trust select distribution rights for Partners Group’s global private equity and infrastructure funds, the firm said.In addition to the stated product marketing, Mizuho Trust and Partners Group also intend to look at new opportunities to work together and develop products for Japanese institutional investors within global private market investment.last_img read more

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TenneT Starts Laying NordLink Subsea Cables

first_imgTransmission system operator TenneT has begun laying its NordLink subsea cable section in the German North Sea.Over the coming weeks, TenneT will wind out 99 kilometres into the seabed between the cable landfall at the Büsum dike, Schleswig-Holstein, and southwest of the Island of Sylt through the tidal flat area in the Wadden Sea.Next year, another 55 kilometres of subsea cable will be laid in the German offshore area up to the border of the Danish territorial waters. Here, the cable end will be connected to the 228-kilometre-long cable section to be laid in 2018 and 2019 in the Danish North Sea area by means of a subsea cable joint. The 134-kilometre-long subsea cable section in Norwegian territorial waters is already complete.Construction of the 53-kilometre-long overhead line on Norwegian mainland is scheduled for completion in 2019. On German mainland, NordLink will be laid as an underground cable on a 54-kilometre route between Büsum dike and the Wilster converter station in the Steinburg district starting in 2019.The 1,400MW NordLink interconnector is 623 kilometres long and will directly connect the energy markets of Germany and Norway for the first time and serve as an exchange between German wind energy and Norwegian hydropower.The NordLink project is being implemented by the Norwegian TSO Statnett and DC Nordseekabel GmbH & Co. KG, each with 50% ownership. TenneT and KfW each have a 50% share in DC Nordseekabel. DC Nordseekabel is responsible for the construction and approvals on the German part of the project.last_img read more

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Shell wraps up New Zealand asset sale to OMV

first_imgOil major Shell has completed the sale of its shares in Shell entities in New Zealand to Austria’s OMV for $578 million.The sale was announced in March 2018. It includes the Māui, Pohokura, and Tank Farm assets, and the sale of Shell’s interest in (and operatorship of) the Great South Basin venture, which was subject to a separate agreement.The sale is consistent with Shell’s drive to simplify the upstream portfolio.“We are proud of having worked in New Zealand for more than 100 years and completion of the sale to OMV marks an important milestone in the company’s history,” said Zoe Yujnovich EVP, Australia and New Zealand.“Shell staff in New Zealand, past and present, have been key to building a successful New Zealand business.”Employees of Shell Taranaki Limited and Shell NZ 2011 Limited are now part of OMV New Zealand.OMV has been partner in the acquired assets (OMV’s former stakes: 26% in Pohokura and 10% in Maui) and now assumes operatorship in both joint ventures.The Māui field, located 35 kilometers off the Taranaki coast, was discovered in 1969. It was one of the largest offshore gas fields in the world at the time.The Māui A platform was installed in 1977, with full production beginning in 1979. Māui B was built in 1992 and is situated 15 kilometres from Māui A, with the two platforms connected via an undersea pipeline through which product is transported. Māui B is designed to be unmanned, being remotely operated from Māui A.The Pohokura field came on stream in 2006 as a high-tech facility meeting 40% of the country’s natural gas needs. Pohokura’s eight wells and production station are run by a single control room operator, supported by a team of around 50 staff, in central New Plymouth, 20 kilometers away from the field.The Tank Farm consists of multiple sites at Paritutu and Omata where Shell Taranaki operated tanks holding condensate and naphtha piped from both Shell operated sites and other fields, from throughout Taranaki.The product is piped to the Newtown King Tanker Terminal at Port Taranaki to be shipped off to refineries for processing, either within New Zealand or internationally.last_img read more

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Lady Gaga bus ad causes a stir

first_img3News 13 November 2013An advertising company is denying it removed an advertisement featuring pop star Lady Gaga from the back of Auckland buses as a result of complaints from Family First.iSite Media says the Universal Music billboard, featuring a sculpture of a partly naked Lady Gaga with her hands over her breasts, was due to be replaced soon anyway.“The reality is that the ad was due to finish at the end of  the week,” says iSite Media chief executive Wayne Chapman.Conservative lobby group Family First made a complaint to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) last week about the “provocative”  billboard on a Howick and Eastern bus, saying it is “unacceptable to display an  example of raunch culture” on a bus often used by school children.“The image simply objectifies women as sex objects and is part of the agenda of a pornified music world,” says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ. “Advertisers and the ASA should be doing everything  they can to reject this.”Both iSite and Universal responded in writing to the  complaints from Family First, but Mr Chapman says they felt they were “on fairly safe grounds”.“The ad is Lady Gaga’s newest album cover, and it is a sculpture of her not an actual depiction”.He says the album advertisement was simultaneously released  in 18 cities in the world.http://www.3news.co.nz/Lady-Gaga-bus-ad-causes-a-stir/tabid/423/articleID/321040/Default.aspx#.UoLUztT2-Uklast_img read more

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Committee reaches stalemate on parental leave

first_img3News 28 February 2014A select committee report into Labour MP Sue Moroney’s paid parental leave amendment bill has been unable to reach an agreement on whether it should pass.The Government Administration Committee reported back to day on Labour’s social development spokeswoman’s bill which would extend paid parental leave from 14 weeks to 26.The report says the committee was conflicted over the benefits versus the financial implications of the bill.There were 9809 submissions on extending paid parental leave and 99.6 percent were in favour.Late last year, the reporting date was pushed back to today because the Government said it would reconsider its position on the bill after previously saying its estimated $150 million annual cost was too expensive.However, last month Prime Minister John Key said National was working on its own policy. Any bill it comes up with would be less than 26 weeks because six months of paid parental leave was currently unaffordable, he says.http://www.3news.co.nz/Committee-reaches-stalemate-on-parental-leave/tabid/1607/articleID/334077/Default.aspxlast_img read more