It’s ready but will they come? South Korea counts down to Winter Games

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first_imgWorkers in the South Korean resort town of Pyeongchang are making final preparations for the Winter Olympics, remaking roads, renovating buildings and preparing menus in English, Chinese and Japanese, a burst of activity that masks a big problem.With less than 100 days before the Games begin, barely a third of the tickets have been sold. “ItYangyang International Airport, the only international airport near Pyengchang, was quiet, with flight routes from Shanghai and seven other Chinese cities all cut since last November.’LOTS OF LOSSES’ Min Byong-kwan, the chief executive of Phoenix Hotels & Resorts, is counting on a pick-up. The ski resort spent tens of millions of dollars building six Olympics courses and renovating some 1,000 rooms to accommodate foreign officials during the Olympics.”We are making a lot of investments – and booking a lot of losses – through the Olympics,” Min said. “It is regrettable that the Olympics boom is falling short of our expectations so far.”Reuters Photo But he added: “I expect the boom to experience exponential growth for the remaining 100 days.” Pyeongchang, carved out of pine-covered slopes in northeast Gangwon province, is being festooned with banners reading “Passion Connected”, a slogan reflecting the hosts’ aim to dissolve tensions with a show of sporting goodwill.Organisers hope athletes from North Korea, still technically at war with the South, will take part and share the mountain with American and Chinese athletes. The North has yet to confirm if it will send a team. Han Do-sam, who sells seafood at the popular Sokcho fish market, said the improvement in ties between Beijing and Seoul was a good start.advertisement”We hope … it will help more foreign tourists come here when they visit for the Olympics,” Han said.UNLIKELY TO MEET TARGET South Korea planned to use the Olympics to introduce foreign tourism to Gangwon province. Provincial authorities set an ambitious goal of attracting 5 million visitors next year, up from an original expectation of around 3 million this year.But Gangwon governor Choi Moon-Soon said he doubted the 2018 target would be met. “So far we have seen declines in visits from China and Japan, which are directly affected by the North’s nuclear issue,” Choi told Reuters.Reuters Photo “Southeastern Asian group tourists are showing signs of cancelling trips as well.” Song Sung-sup, director of Goodmorning Travel, which specialises in Chinese tourism, was also glum, despite Tuesday’s surprise detente between South Korea and China.”Unless China lifts a ban on charter flights to any local airport in South Korea, I’m a bit skeptical whether signs of easing are clear at the moment,” said Song, who saw sales drop by up to 20 percent due to the frozen ties with China.Just two years ago, the outlook looked bright. A Chinese company had committed to build a $431 million luxury resort – China Dream City – an hour’s drive from Pyeongchang.Pitched at Chinese tourists, it was to provide accommodation during the Games. But construction has still not begun. Governor Choi said he was also worried about delays to a $450 million project to build a Legoland in the city of Chuncheon, about 145 km (90 miles) from the Games venue.Legoland operator Merlin Entertainments said last month the resort’s completion date was delayed by three years to 2020 to get final partner funding and “for a lot of Korean twists and turns”, without elaborating.Merlin CEO Nick Varney joked last month it might help ease tensions, and brighten up prospects for the Games, if Legoland were to promise North Korea’s leader an annual pass to the theme park.Reuters Photo “Hopefully that will cheer him up a little bit.”‘s a bummer,” said 55-year-old motel owner Oh Young-whyan, who spent about $360,000 refurbishing his 15-room property close to the Olympics Plaza. Oh, other hotel owners and local authorities say political tensions with North Korea and China have chilled foreign interest in the Games, which open on Feb. 9 just 80 km (50 miles) from the world’s most heavily fortified border.Tourists are reluctant to commit to the event as North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong Un, and U.S. President Donald Trump trade insults and threats of mutual destruction after the North conducted its sixth and most powerful nuclear test in September.Reuters Photo Ticket sales are weak, with 341,327 sold, or 32 percent of the total on offer, as of Oct. 24 – much weaker than during the run-up to the last winter Games in Sochi, Russia. More than 70 percent of Sochi’s tickets were sold before the opening ceremony. Pyeongchang Organising Committee Secretary General Yeo Hyung-koo says there is still time to catch up.advertisementThe Olympics torch relay, which began in Korea on Wednesday, will ignite domestic interest, he said. Local business are also putting on a brave face, hoping for a late surge in interest, especially from Chinese tourists after Beijing this week set aside a dispute with Seoul over an anti-missile system. “We still have 100 days so I’m not that worried,” said Oh, owner of the Daekyanryung-sanbang motel, where Olympics banners were hung inside and out. Reuters PhotoNO PASSENGERS, EMPTY AIRPORTNearby, a bus terminal which undertook a $447,000 makeover in preparation for the Olympics was largely empty, with only one Chinese couple and a handful of locals seen waiting for buses.Buses bound for Seoul in the past used to have as many as 38 foreign passengers, half of them Chinese, but nowadays some buses have no passengers, said Kim Moo-gyu, the owner of the terminal.Before this week’s diplomatic breakthrough, Chinese authorities had unofficially imposed a ban on tour groups visiting South Korea since March and stopped charter flights.The number of Chinese visitors, which accounted for nearly half of all foreign tourists into South Korea last year, slumped 61 percent from March to September from the same period last year, official data shows.Yangyang International Airport, the only international airport near Pyengchang, was quiet, with flight routes from Shanghai and seven other Chinese cities all cut since last November.last_img read more

Fabulous beginning, says NRAI chief after British lawmaker offers support for shooting’s inclusion in 2022 CWG

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first_imgBy Abhishek Hore New Delhi, June 29 (PTI) The Indian shooting fraternity was provided a flicker of hope by England’s Sports Minister Tracey Crouch, who said they were “exploring ways” to include the sport in the 2022 Commonwealth Games program, during a speech that combined pragmatism with optimism. Crouch’s address at the British Parliament’s House of Commons was immediately “welcomed” by the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) President Raninder Singh. “We welcome the stand of the government in parliament and that we forward our sincere gratitude to Mr. Alister Jack DL, MP, Lord Karan Bilimoria CBE DL, MP, Dr. (Narinder) Batra and the Government of India in supporting the efforts of all the commonwealth shooting nations faced with this travesty,” Raninder told PTI. The development follows a sustained effort by the NRAI chief, as India managed to get cross party support of a substantial number in the House of Commons, seeking re-inclusion of shooting in Birmingham. “With the continued support of all and under the aegis of the ISSF, we are now hopeful for an effective redressal of this dilemma.” Raninder urged the stakeholders to keep the fight going till they reach their goal. “Though clearly a fabulous beginning we must all recognise that we must continue our efforts together until we receive a notification finally reinstating shooting at the Birmingham games. “… However, we note that where there was darkness (and) we now can now see the first tender signs of light.” Even as the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) maintained its stance of not including shooting in the Birmingham Games owing to logistical issues, India did not give up on its hopes and the outcry finally reached the doors of the British Parliament.advertisement Sports Minister Crouch said: “The Government supports the notion of shooting being included.” Shooting is bracketed as an optional sport in the Commonwealth Games, which means organisers in Birmingham were able to choose whether to include it or not. Speaking in the House of Commons, Crouch said she and Culture Secretary Matt Hancock were exploring ways to get shooting back on the roster. “The Government supports the notion of shooting being included, and will work with partners to overcome logistical challenges, if required. We will continue to work with games partners,” she said. While Indian shooters have shone on the world stage in recent years, the sport’s enthusiasts in England, Crouch said, see it as an event where British teams traditionally excel. Crouch added, “Shooting’s popularity across the Commonwealth nations and territories, from the largest nation to the smallest, is enormous, and the home nations have had a particularly strong track record at previous games. “In recognition of that and of the value that shooting brings to the games, the Secretary of State and I are exploring with games partners the potential for including shooting in the sport programme. “However, I stress that the decision is beyond our remit, and we have an enormous challenge in that Birmingham was awarded the games with just 4.5 years to deliver, rather than the usual seven years.” PTI AH PM PM PMlast_img read more

Manchester United edge past Real Madrid in International Champions Cup

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first_imgJose Mourinho finally had something to smile about as Manchester United managed to edge past European champions Real Madrid in their final International Champions Cup in the United States of America.First half goals from Alexis Sanchez and Ander Herrera helped United beat Real Madrid 2-1 and end their tempestuous trip to the United States on a positive note.Mourinho’s mood has been a complete disaster in the last two weeks in USA as he continued to rue to the lack of first-team players and transfer activity. However, things were a tad different on Wednesday morning as his men managed to take a two-goal lead against a make-shift Real Madrid team that new coach Julen Lopetegui fielded in the first-half of the match at the Hard Rock Stadium in Miami.Real Madrid did aim for a comeback with Karim Benzema slotting in a poachers goal in just before the half-time mark but the United defenders managed to keep a ‘better’ Real at bay in the second-half to come out with a one-goal win.Also read – Jose Mourinho confident of one more signing before transfer window shutsIn front of 64,141 at Miami’s Hard Rock Stadium, United were finishing off their pre-season preparations against a Real Madrid side just starting theirs.Job done for @Alexis_Sanchez!Thoughts on his display tonight?#MUFC #MUTOUR pic.twitter.com/7h9mV6ag29Manchester United (@ManUtd) August 1, 2018La Liga starts a week later than the Premier League so new Real manager Lopetegui was able to name the likes of Gareth Bale to start while Germany star Toni Kroos was on the bench.advertisementSpanish international David de Gea was making his first start since returning from the extra time given to him following the World Cup and he was almost beaten in the eighth minute – Bale starting a move which saw Benzema fire just wide from close range.Also read – Jose Mourinho bookie’s favourite to ‘get the axe’ first in Premier LeagueBrazilian Fred was making his first United start and looked comfortable in his new surroundings.And on 18 minutes, United were ahead. Ander Herrera fed Matteo Darmian and teed up Sanchez who clinically swept the ball home. It was a Mourinho’s side’s first real opportunity – and it was taken superbly.So too was the second goal which arrived on 27 minutes.Also read – Jose Mourinho suggests holidaying Manchester United players to return earlyDarmian lifted the ball to Mata and once the Spaniard had regained his composure he crossed for Sanchez who was able to divert the ball into the path of Herrera who made no mistake.46′ | 2-1 | The second half has started at the Hard Rock Stadium! ¡VAMOS!: https://t.co/x0drPMslww#RMTour | #HalaMadrid pic.twitter.com/iBPtpruiMyReal Madrid C.F. (@realmadriden) August 1, 2018Bale curled wide soon after but just before the interval, Benzema tapped in an excellent Theo Hernandez cross to give the vast amounts of Madrid fans in Miami something to cheer.Also read -World Cup success means Premier League loss for Manchester United: MourinhoBale, a one time target for Mourinho, was withdrawn for the second half as Lopetegui shuffled his pack and one of the substitutes, Martin Odegaard should have levelled on 56 minutes when he blazed over the bar from eight yards.The Norwegian saw a free-kick saved by De Gea late on but United held firm to lift Mourinho’s mood. It was their first victory in regulation play this pre-season – AC Milan were defeated on penalties in Los Angeles last week.(With inputs from PTI)last_img read more

Kylian Mbappe helps PSG beat St Etienne and extend lead in Ligue 1

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first_imgKylian Mbappe’s second-half strike earned Paris St Germain a 1-0 win at St Etienne as the French champions continued their inevitable march towards the Ligue 1 title on Sunday.France striker Mbappe, who had not scored in his two previous league outings, found the back of the net in the 73rd minute to put Thomas Tuchel’s side on 62 points from 23 games.The result extended PSG’s lead to 12 points after second-placed Lille, who have played two more games, were held goalless at home by Montpellier earlier on Sunday.St Etienne are fifth on 40 points.Five days after beating Manchester United 2-0 at Old Trafford in their Champions League last-16 first leg, the capital side enjoyed more possession but proved toothless in the first half, managing only one shot on target to St Etienne’s two.They were without the injured Neymar and Edinson Cavani while influential midfielder Marco Verratti was rested by Tuchel.In his absence, Juan Bernat and Leandro Paredes produced a solid performance in midfield as Marquinhos slipped back down in a three-man defence.PSG had their first clear chance 10 minutes into the second half when Julian Draxler forced Stephane Ruffier to a superb save after being set up by Angel Di Maria.The hosts were dangerous, however, with the lively Kevin Monnet Paquet a constant threat up front.But PSG gained the upper hand when Mbappe was slipped through by Daniel Alves and beat Ruffier from close range to net his 19th goal in 18 appearances in Ligue 1 this season.He becomes the first French player in 45 years to reach that tally after 18 appearances in a season in the French top flight.advertisementAlso Watch:last_img read more

Mo Farah wins fourth Great North Run in row and eyes British marathon record

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first_img Read more Mo Farah calls time on GB career after victory in final track outing Support The Guardian The 34-year-old finished in a disappointing 2hr 8min 21sec in his only marathon in 2014 – more than a minute outside Jones’s best. But he believes that a change in training can help him go much quicker.“I’d like Steve Jones’s mark,” he said. “In 2014 I did a lot more track because I still wanted that. Now I will forget about that and focus completely on the road. Doing long runs, tempos and just try and learn from it.“I’m also taking ideas from other athletes, who run marathons, like Lelisa Desisa here who coaches himself. I asked: ‘What else do you have to do?’ He said it’s similar to the track but you do a certain mileage. You run consistently for two months and that’s it. I thought that sounds easy. But you have to learn from it.”For now Farah will continue to be based in America. When asked about whether he would stay in Portland with the same coaching set up, he replied: “We have thought about coming back to the UK. I have missed the UK. But I have to put my kids first. They go to school in Portland so I have to plan ahead. But we would like to be back in the next couple of years, 100%. Go and watch my team [Arsenal] and do things I enjoy in the UK.”However, Farah again appeared to play down his chances of running the Olympic marathon in 2020, when he will be 37. “I’ll just see what happens,” he said. “It does play on my mind: ‘Do I think I could do Tokyo?’ Only if I’m good enough, if I get there and can get a medal, then yes. I wouldn’t let my country down. I would love to represent my country, like I’ve done on the track. But it just depends on how the marathon goes. If it goes so badly, then I won’t be there, right?” The Recap: sign up for the best of the Guardian’s sport coverage Share via Email Earlier Farah had to display all of his customary grit as he nearly paid the price for a lack of training when the 13.1-mile Great North Run exploded into life after a sedate start. It was Farah who initially pushed the pace, breaking up the leading field of nine with a 4min 28sec mile just before halfway, which left only Robertson and Desisa alongside him in the leading three.Yet when Robertson kicked hard with four miles remaining, Desisa soon fell back and Farah also struggled to stay with him, before kicking clear in sight of the finish to win in 1:00.06, with the New Zealander six seconds back.“Jake almost got rid of me with three miles to go because I was hurting,” Farah said. “I was just hanging on and gritting my teeth. I expected him to push on but it was a great race.“Every part of my muscles is aching now. That was really, really tough. I have never been this sore. It’s been hard to motivate myself after Zurich, after the world championships, and I haven’t done as much training.” Great Run (@Great_Run)Well we weren’t expecting that! An elite proposal right on the @SimplyhealthUK #GreatNorthRun finish line from @Jakehtbz 😍👏🏼 pic.twitter.com/VVfoMyNw3FSeptember 10, 2017 Sir Mo Farah has set his sights on breaking Steve Jones’s 32-year-old British record over 26.2 miles after confirming that he will run the London marathon in April. The announcement came after a weary Farah kicked clear of the New Zealander Jake Robertson with 250 metres remaining to win his fourth Great North Run in a row.Farah, who retired from the track in August after winning the 5,000m at the Diamond League meeting in Zurich, also confirmed that he would remain in the United States, where he trains at the Nike Oregon Project, but could move back to the UK in the next couple of years. … we have a small favour to ask. More people, like you, are reading and supporting the Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we made the choice to keep our reporting open for all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford to pay.The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We hope you will consider supporting us today. We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism that’s open and independent. Every reader contribution, however big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Read more Share on LinkedIn newscenter_img Share on Twitter In the women’s race the London marathon winner, Mary Keitany, broke away from the field early to win in 1:05.59, nearly two minutes clear of the Olympic 5,000m champion, Vivian Cheruiyot, who was second in 1:07.44. Gemma Steele was the best of the British women, finishing sixth in 1:11.32, with Lily Partridge seventh in 1:12.09.Keitany, whose time was 20 seconds outside her personal best, said: “I am very excited that I have won again for the third time. Despite the fact it was too windy, I just tried my best.” Topics Share on Facebook Share on WhatsApp Mo Farah Share on Pinterest Share on Messenger Since you’re here… Athletics Reuse this contentlast_img read more

a month agoMan Utd midfielder Pereira desperate to repay Solskjaer support

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first_imgAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Man Utd midfielder Pereira desperate to repay Solskjaer supportby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveManchester United midfielder Andreas Pereira accepts the team is falling short of standards. The Belgium-born Brazil ­international has been at Old Trafford long enough to know Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is in the midst of a crisis ahead of the game with Arsenal tomorrow. Pereira said: “The manager has shown a lot of faith in the young players – and I am very proud being one of them.“I want to carry on repaying that faith and hopefully nail down a spot in the team. ­ Manchester United is the ­biggest club in world. If we get a scoreline like we did at West Ham, the reaction to it is big – but that is normal.“People will talk about it and will always talk about this club. But we are Man United players and we have to deal with that pressure.“We have to pick ourselves up. We beat Rochdale and I am sure we will do the same against ­Arsenal.” last_img read more

19 days agoArsenal move to buy back PSV striker Donyell Malen

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first_imgArsenal move to buy back PSV striker Donyell Malenby Paul Vegas19 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveArsenal are moving to buy back PSV Eindhoven striker Donyell Malen.Malen has been able to launch his senior career with PSV after a difficult spell inside Arsenal’s academy.The Holland international is on the radar of AC Milan, but Tuttosport says the Gunners are ready to make a bumper offer.The Londoners aim to wait until the summer before offering €56m for the striker.Malen, 20, has this season hit eight goals in eight league games. TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img

DNV GL Gives Nod for Vards New LNG Bunker Vessel Design

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first_imgzoom Norwegian firm Vard Engineering Brevik AS has received an Approval in Principle (AiP) for its new 6,500 m3 bunker vessel design from the classification society DNV GL.The design has been evaluated for compliance with the DNV GL Gas Bunker rules, the applicable Gas Carrier rules as well as the IGC Code’s 2016 edition, according to DNV GL.The cooperation between DNV GL and Vard resulted in a development “enabling flexibility and quality assurance of our design,” Øystein Kristoffersen Sæther, Managing Director for Vard Engineering Brevik, said, adding that Vard believes that the cooperation could results in “first class designs for shipowners and operators.”The AiP is a continuation of the General Approval of Ship Application (GASA) of Vard and Brevik Technology’s new IMO Type-B liquefied natural gas (LNG) cargo containment system which was granted by DNV GL at the end of 2015.The bunker vessel will be given the following class notation 1A tanker for liquefied gas (-163˚C, 500 kg/m3, 0.7 bar) Gas Bunker, DNV GL said.last_img read more

BC tech advocate to help boost federal funding for innovative projects

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first_imgVICTORIA – British Columbia has appointed its first innovation commissioner to advocate for the province’s technology sector in Ottawa, Washington state and abroad.Alan Winter will take on the newly created role for one year, with an option to extend his job based on performance.Premier John Horgan says Winter’s role would create opportunities for tech companies and shepherd innovation across all industries and regions in the province.Winter’s appointment is part of the May 2017 confidence and supply agreement between the NDP and the Green party to support the technology sector.Green party Leader Andrew Weaver says Winter’s position would help B.C. companies tap into existing federal programs.Winter is formerly president of the non-profit organization Genome BC and says in a statement that his first priority will be championing Canada’s so-called digital technology supercluster, a B.C.-led industry consortium.last_img read more

King of Spain Gives Moroccos Mehdi Qotbi the Commanders Cross

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By Intissar FouziRabat – The Spanish king will give the Commander’s Cross of the Order of Civil Merit to Mehdi Qotbi, President of Morocco’s National Museum Foundation (FNM), on Wednesday, June 27.The painter took to his Facebook account to express his gratitude to the Spanish King Felipe VI. “This distinction of His Majesty Felipe VI, is an honor and a wonderful encouragement for the work performed by the FNM.” “I feel this as an honor and a wonderful encouragement to continue this path of development and culture through very large exhibitions that put art in the reach of every Moroccan,” Qotbi said in a meeting at the Elysee Palace.Since the inauguration of the Mohammed VI Museum of Contemporary Art in 2014,  Mehdi Qotbi, the director of the museum and the president of the FNM, has set up numerous visiting exhibitions to introduce the Moroccan public to the work of major international artists.Last year, the museum boasted an “Africa in the Capital” exhibit, while later this year, it will feature the works of Francisco Goya and other contemporary Spanish artists from October 31 to February 4, 2019.Mehdi Qotbi is a  symbol of culture today in Morocco. At the same time, he continues to address new topics in the country’s art. read more

Log costs wildfires cited in decision to close sawmill in Quesnel BC

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QUESNEL, B.C. — A sawmill is closing in the forestry community of Quesnel in British Columbia’s Interior and its owner is placing the blame on weak lumber markets and the impact of wildfires in recent years.Tolko Industries Ltd. says it’s permanently closing its Quest Wood sawmill in Quesnel in August and reducing the shifts by half at its Kelowna mill in July.The Quesnel sawmill employs 150 people and another 90 workers will be affected by the reduction of shifts from two to one in Kelowna.Tolko president and CEO Brad Thorlakson says in a statement that reductions to the annual allowable cut have come sooner than expected due to log costs, weak lumber markets and the “catastrophic” impacts of wildfires.He said Tolko doesn’t have enough economically priced fibre to to keep all of its ritish Columbia mills running efficiently and productively.Forestry Minister Doug Donaldson says the province will work with Tolko and the community to deliver support programs for affected workers.“Unfortunately, the problems facing Tolko are not new. They have been mounting for the past several years,” Donaldson says in a statement.The mountain pine beetle destroyed millions of hectares of forests in British Columbia following population explosion in the 1990s, but beetle-destroyed forests have also been a valued source for wood fibre until supplies dwindled.Donaldson said the fibre shortage was made worse by the record-breaking 2017 wildfire season and weaker lumber markets.“While the most recent closure will most acutely impact Quesnel, the declining supply of beetle-killed wood has been a factor on the Interior timber supply for the last few years,” Donaldson says.The industry accelerated harvesting to take advantage of beetle-killed forests, knowing full well that the newly available timber supply was finite, he says.He says the government is working to improve industry competitiveness in each of the province’s timber supply areas in collaboration with companies, unions, local governments and First Nations.— By Amy Smart in Vancouver.The Canadian Press read more

Delinquent loans fall to record low amid signs Canadians are kicking their

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Credit has become very important for consumers in general. There is more awareness, I would say, then there was before[np_storybar title=”Spending problem? Blame it on your brain” link=”https://business.financialpost.com/2013/01/23/is-your-brain-high-on-spending-trick-it-into-saving/”%5DIf we are genetically compelled to live in the present, to indulge, and to soothe ourselves with shopping, how can we fight our instincts? Here are four ways [/np_storybar]TORONTO — Canadians are paying off their debts faster, with the number of those more than three months behind on loan payments dropping to a record low, according to a report Thursday from Equifax Canada.The latest National Credits Trends study by the credit monitoring firm found that the percentage of unpaid non-mortgage debt past-due more than 90 days was 1.19% in the fourth quarter of 2012, a slight decrease from 1.22% in the third quarter.Nadim Abdo, Equifax’s vice-president of consulting solutions, says these rates have been declining since the pre-recession level in 2007 when it was at 1.75%.“Part of it I would attribute to people looking after their credit and not taking on too much credit,” he said. “Credit has become very important for consumers in general. There is more awareness, I would say, then there was before.”The study, which is released each quarter, also found that average credit card balances have dropped by 3.7% compared with the July-September quarter — a sign that people may be trying to pay these off quicker than before.Despite this, the study also saw an increase of 3.2% on non-mortgage loans, including bank loans, lines of credit, car leases and credit cards in the October-December period, up from a 1.8% increase in the previous quarter.Equifax said that suggested that Canadian non-mortgage debt totalled $497.4 billion in the fourth quarter, up from $489 billion in the third quarter.The firm says it found that fewer consumers applied for new loans in the latest quarter, but rather made do with the loans they already had.And it found an 11% decline in new credit applications, compared with pre-recession levels.This shows that consumers are learning more control over their credit and debt levels, Abdo said.“People are (being) financially responsible,” he said. “They have the facilities and they’re just using them, versus just going crazy and getting those 25 credit cards like we used to back in the heyday.”Abdo also said he expected the drop in loan balances and loan defaults to continue if the economy remains stable.In previous years, he says Equifax studies have shown that consumers tend to take out more loans, and do not pay them back as quickly, during a volatile economy or periods of high unemployment.Meanwhile, the Bank of Canada on Tuesday downgraded its economic growth outlook for the country to 1.9% for 2012 and to 2% for 2013, both three-tenths of a point lower than previously forecast.The central bank says as a result, interest rates will be kept lower for longer due to the weak economy. read more

In St Petersburg UN chief stresses need for cooperation to tackle global

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“This is a vital month for global cooperation,” Mr. Ban said in his remarks at St. Petersburg State University. “Around the world, human rights are at risk. Democracies are threatened. Legitimate voices and movements of dissent are being stifled. People everywhere are worried about the future and wonder whether institutions and decision-makers will hear their pleas and act on them.”Mr. Ban underlined that States have an obligation to address the immediate crises facing the world, including the civil war in Syria which has killed more than 100,000 people, displaced millions, and generated instability across the region.“The latest fighting has also raised the spectre of chemical warfare – which, if confirmed by the UN investigation mission, would be an atrocious violation of international law,” Mr. Ban said. “I continue to press for a political solution. Arms flows and militarization only sustain the bloodshed. It is time for the parties to stop fighting and start talking.”Mr. Ban also stressed that countries should continue to focus on long-term challenges, including the achievement of the anti-poverty targets known as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), strengthening global economic recovery, and achieving a sustainable future.“Putting off those challenges until tomorrow will only make them even more difficult and expensive to solve,” Mr. Ban said, adding that united action by the international community can make a difference in creating jobs, improving access to education, and addressing food insecurity.“So here at the G20, I will urge leaders to invest more in education, training and skills. This is crucial for ensuring that young people have the tools they need for decent work opportunities and a brighter future.” He stressed that 425 million young women and men are expected to join the global workforce over the next 20 years and better education and training would be crucial for ensuring that they have the tools they need for decent work opportunities and a brighter future.Mr. Ban also noted the need to take action on climate change by increasing commitments to low-carbon energy systems and green industries.“Many countries, rich and poor, have implemented green economy policies to promote low-emission technologies and energy efficiency. Here in St. Petersburg, I will call on all G20 countries to adopt and promote new patterns and models for environmentally sustainable economic growth.”Mr. Ban added that countries would have an opportunity to lay the groundwork for securing a universal, ambitious and binding climate agreement in 2015 at the high-level climate change summit next September. read more

Probation service failed to protect woman who complained her convicted murderer expartner

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first_imgBefore Mellors’ release Pearl Black’s brother and sister, George and Mary Black, wrote to the Parole Board to warn them that he would kill again.Ms Black said: “The Parole Board have let us down totally. The justice system has let us down by not listening to us when we warned them this man would commit murder again.”Two good women died by the hands of this monster.”The different agencies should have picked up on this because he had been stalking Janet.” Mellors was released from prison in 2014 and was in a relationship with Mrs Scott while she was temporarily separated from her husband in 2017, and killed her after she got back together with Mr Scott.Mellors stabbed her at her home in Nursery Road, Arnold, Nottinghamshire, on 29 January then drove her towards Nottingham city centre. Simon Mellors killed two women in Nottinghamshire - Pearl Black, 36, in 1999, and Janet Scott, 51, in 2018 Simon Mellors killed Janet Scott after his release from prison for the murder of Pearl Black Simon Mellors killed Janet Scott after his release from prison for the murder of Pearl Black The Ministry of Justice said a full review into the case is under way.A Ministry of Justice spokesperson added: “Serious further offences such as this are very rare, but each one is taken extremely seriously and investigated fully.”A full review into this case is under way, and we will carefully consider the findings to make sure all possible lessons are learnt.”An inquest to examine the circumstances of Mrs Scott’s death has also been opened and adjourned.center_img Simon Mellors killed two women in Nottinghamshire – Pearl Black, 36, in 1999, and Janet Scott, 51, in 2018 A woman killed by a convicted murdered had complained to the probation service fearing for her life, her family have revealed.Janet Scott, 51, was murdered in January after dating convicted killer Simon Mellors, and now her husband Chris Scott has told of how the probation service failed to protect his wife.Simon Mellors, from Nottingham, murdered his former partner Pearl Black in 1999, then killed Mrs Scott after being released from prison on licence.Mr Scott said Mellors threatened to kill them both and followed Mrs Scott to work before she died.”If the probation service had done something and informed the police and had Mellors been arrested my wife would still be alive,” said Mr Scott.Speaking to the BBC he said that his wife knew Mellors was going to kill her. “She knew it was coming,” he said.”I said ‘Look, you’ve got nothing to worry about, I’m here, I’m going to protect you, nothing is going to happen’.” She escaped and ran towards a traffic officer for help, but Mellors drove his car into both of them, injuring the traffic officer and killing Mrs Scott instantly.Mellors died in prison after being charged with her murder and the attempted murder of the traffic officer. He is thought to have killed himself.Mrs Scott’s sister Susan Thomson confirmed that complaints had been made about Mellors to his probation officer. “I knew that my sister sent texts to the probation officer because she rung me up when she did it and told me so,” said Mrs Thomson.”I feel that Simon should have been told, or pulled in, or something done about it, while he was stalking my sister.” 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.last_img read more

GM to introduce wireless charging in select 2014 models

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first_imgBuy a new car today, and it’s likely to come with Bluetooth to wirelessly stream phone calls and music from your smartphone. It doesn’t do away all the cord clutter in your cabin, unfortunately. If you want to charge your phone, you still need a USB cable.Several manufacturers are racing to integrate wireless charging tech, and it looks like GM may be the first to deliver on a large scale. According to a Bloomberg report, the company is hashing out details with the folks at Powermat.GM invested in Powermat back in 2011 and integrated its charging system in the 2012 Chevy Volt. It’s no surprise that GM now wants to expand the partnership.While that’s certainly good news, it’s not good news for everyone. There’s no single wireless charging standard right now, so a built-in Powermat in a 2014 GM vehicle isn’t necessarily going to charge your smartphone.Powermat probably has the biggest consumer presence of the three (which includes Qi), but there aren’t a lot of phones on the market yet that ship with wireless charging capabilities. You can always buy a Powermat case to clip around your phone, but not everyone wants the added bulk of a wireless charging “backpack.”Unless you’re keen on hardware hacking, though, you don’t have an alternative with a device like the Galaxy S4 or Lumia 920. Their first-party charging kits are Qi compatible. The same is true for Verizon’s LG G2.Theoretically, though, this news may turn the tides, since Powermat now has added leverage with device manufacturers. Now that the company can say, “Hey, one of the world’s largest automakers is shipping our chargers,” it should be easier to convince manufacturers to adopt Powermat tech in their phones.Then again, GM has unsurprisingly locked Powermat into an exclusive deal. That either means that it plans to offer only Powermat chargers in its vehicles — or that it’ll be the only company to offer both Powermat and others like Qi.Let’s hope it’s the latter.last_img read more

Member of Parliament Honorable Mark Humes Pays Courtesy Call on RBDF Commodore

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first_imgFacebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp#Bahamas, November 8, 2017 – Nassau – The Honourable Mark Humes paid a courtesy call on Commander Defence Force, Commodore Tellis A. Bethel at the Defence Force Headquarters at HMBS Coral Harbour to discuss plans for the maintenance and upkeep of The Bahamas Veterans Cemetery on Infant View Road.The adoption of the military cemetery is a new project undertaken by the Defence Force and coordinated by Commander Frederick Brown and Chief Petty Officer Lincoln Rolle, along with members of the Defence Force’s Military Police and Force Protection Department.   Also present during the meeting were the Defence Force’s British Legion-Bahamas Branch Liaison Officer, Commander Shonedel Pinder, the Defence Force representative at the British Legion, Reservist Adina Munroe, and Chief Petty Officer Lincoln Rolle and Petty Officer Dominique McPhee of the Military Police and Force Protection Department, and Force Chief Petty Officer Basil Miller of the Defence Force’s Base Maintenance Team.Photo shows (From Left): Force Chief Petty Officer Basil Miller; Commodore Tellis Bethel; Chief Petty Officer Lincoln Rolle;The Honourable Mark Humes, Member of Parliament for Fort Charlotte; Petty Officer Dominique McPhee; Airwing Commanding Officer, Shondel Pinder; and Reservist Adina Munroe, 1st Assistant Secretary to British Legion-Bahamas Branch. (RBDF Photo by Marine Seaman Michael Turner) Photo shows: The entrance of the Bahamas Veteran Cemetery, Infant View Road. (RBDF Photo by Marine Seaman Kyle Smith) (For further information please contact the RBDF Public Relations Department or visit our website: www.rbdf.gov.bs, follow us on Facebook, Twitter and view our Youtube channel) -rbdf-#GuardOurHeritage Related Items:last_img read more

Houston at the forefront of MatSu marijuana legislation

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first_imgWhen Alaska voters approved legalization of recreational pot and retail sales of marijuana products in 2014, they also approved the right of local governments to ban commercial marijuana grow operations or pot sales within city limits. Two cities in the Matanuska Susitna Borough have opted to ban marijuana sales and grow operations. But Houston is aiming to bolster its  city revenues with legal marijuana commerce. Alaska Public Media’s Ellen Lockyer spoke with Houston mayor Virgie Thompson on how that could shape the city’s future.Download AudioCannabis Plant. (Photo by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)Houston is a 22 square mile entity in the middle of the Matanuska Susitna Borough. The Borough communities of Palmer and Wasilla have banned pot sales, but Houston is bucking that trend.Mayor Virgie Thompson says the city survives on property taxes, sales taxes and state revenue sharing. With Alaska’s state finances heading downward because of the drop in oil prices, state help is dwindling. Thompson says, last year, the city couldn’t meet it’s budget.“And we ended up actually having to furlough employees at the end of the last fiscal year, because we didn’t have the funds,” Thompson said. “We continued to pay their insurance, but we did have to furlough them from their daily responsibilities.”Houston also had to shutter its police department to pay for other city services.Thompson says the Houston City Council views marijuana retail as an opportunity. Thompson says, city voters turned down a city initiative banning commercial pot during the last city election.“We voted on it not once, but twice, and the second time, it was also the residents wanted marijuana,” said Thompson. “So, done deal. Now we are going to have to deal with it. This is what the people want.”A city ordinance introduced in February aims to regulate commercial pot grow operations and retail sales of cannabis products. If it passes, Houston will be an island of legal pot in a Borough the size of West Virginia.This is not the first time Houston has taken its own path. Houston allows the sale of fireworks, which are prohibited throughout the Mat Su Borough and Anchorage. Thompson says the sales taxes on Roman candles help pay for emergency services, such as fire response, and the income from pot excise and sales taxes could cover expenses of a new city police force.A public hearing on the city pot ordinance earlier this month drew  a large crowd. One of the sticking points in the legislation is “on site” consumption of marijuana products. The initial ordinance language prohibited on-site consumption, and Thompson supports that.“They buy their ounce, and they put it in the trunk of their car, and they’re gone,” said Thompson. “What they do after that, I’m sorry I don’t know, but as far as on-site consumption and someone sitting in a parking lot out by the retail place, and smoking, that’s not going to be allowed. That’s the way it is. ”Thompson says the city’s proposed land use ordinance would create zoning to designate areas for grow operations or cannabis products shops. A 2% city sales tax on products and an excise tax of 8 to 10 % an ounce has been proposed at the cultivation stage.But at the council meeting, an amendment changing the ordinance to allow on -site smoking in commercial and Parks Highway zones was put forward, and debate over it has delayed a vote until after a second public hearing.The mayor says the city code ought to follow state marijuana regulations, rather than breaking new ground.“If we do something different from what the state is allowing at this point in time, then it is our responsibility to police that,” Thompson said. “My opinion is, we should take baby steps, I don’t think we should be taking everything on at the same time. ”Land rich Houston has the potential to attract marijuana grow operations, which in turn could supply other cannabis operations, Thompson says. The city has a sales tax, but too few businesses to contribute much to city coffers. The Houston City Council will take public comment on the ordinance on March 24.last_img read more

How much do David Warner and Sunil Narine earn in IPL Whopping

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first_img Close IBTimes VideoRelated VideosMore videos Play VideoPauseMute0:06/1:19Loaded: 0%0:06Progress: 0%Stream TypeLIVE-1:13?Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedSubtitlessubtitles settings, opens subtitles settings dialogsubtitles off, selectedAudio Trackdefault, selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window. COPY LINKAD Loading … The Indian Premier League is famous for making millionaires overnight and thus it is no surprise that this T20 tournament is one of the most attractive leagues for the players to play in. The charm of the IPL has not only made the careers of young Indian players but also caught the attention of many foreign players.Over the years, a lot of overseas players have plied their trade for various franchises in the IPL but very rarely have foreign players come in as unknown entities and become stars. This was largely because each team is allowed four overseas players and the pool of players is so huge, generally the established stars are picked up. But in 2012, Kolkata Knight Riders captain Gautam Gambhir sprung a surprise by buying a little known Caribbean at the auctions. Sunil Narine was the MVP of IPL 2018.Vipin Pawar / IPL / SPORTZPICSThis person was none other than Sunil Narine and he has since become one of the legends of the IPL. He burst onto the scene as a mystery spinner and made life difficult for the batsmen with his myriad variations that used to come at a quick pace. But he was asked to remodel his action which took away the mystery element from his game in 2014. This did not stop him from reinventing himself and he is now one of the IPL’s better all-rounders as he comes out to open the batting and scores quick runs.Narine was named the most valuable player in IPL 2018 and is one of the most prized assets in the shortest format of the game. Thus, it comes as no surprise that the KKR all-rounder earns a whopping Rs 12.5 crore from his IPL contract which equates to 1.37 euro. The 2019 edition of the IPL is Narine 8th season with KKR and till the 2018 edition, he had 112 scalps in 99 matches at an economy rate of 6.55 runs per over. With bat in hand, he has 628 runs with the highest score of 75 at a strike rate almost touching 169. David Warner made a fantastic return to the IPL against KKR.IANSLike Narine, another player who reinvented himself is former Sunrisers Hyderabad skipper David Warner. While he is a different and bullish sort of person for Australia, he has been a respected leader for his IPL team. Captaining SRH to the title in 2016, Warner has made a name for himself in the IPL and is also the highest scoring overseas player in the history of the tournament.Warner’s exploits in the IPL sees him earning Rs 12/5 crore from his franchise which equates to 1.37 million euro. The 32-year-old made his IPL debut in 2009 and has 4099 runs in 115 games at an average of 40.99 with a strike rate of 142.47 in the IPL.center_img Sunrisers Hyderabad to take on Chennai Super Kings in IPL 2018 finalslast_img read more

PICS Priyanka Chopra falls off yacht in Miami hubby Nick Jonas fails

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first_imgPriyanka Chopra falls off floating platformTwitterPriyanka Chopra, who has been in news these days for various reasons, is again being talked about for some pictures that show the actress falling off a yacht while having fun with hubby Nick Jonas.Priyanka is currently enjoying a vacation in Miami with her husband and his family. A picture is doing the rounds on social media that shows her falling off the yacht.Nick is also seen beside her in the picture, apparently trying to save her from falling into the ocean. However, it looks like he could not and PeeCee eventually fell into the ocean.In other pictures, a swimsuit-clad Priyanka was seen drying herself off on the yacht. A few days back, a video had surfaced on social media that showed Priyanka losing her balance while Nick held her hand and saved her from falling off the yacht.Well, it looks like Priyanka is having a great time but certainly needs to be little more careful. 1/6 TwitterTwitterTwitterTwitterTwitterPreviousNextThe Quantico actress has been in news for some wrong reasons. She was vehemently slammed for not talking about Assam flood for a long time. As she is the brand ambassador of Assam tourism, it was expected that she would express concern for the people in the state and urge people to donate. Although she did, many felt it came too late.She was again ridiculed on social media after a picture of her smoking a cigarette went viral. The diva was lambasted as she once had said that she suffers from asthma and had appealed on social media to celebrate Diwali without crackers.last_img read more