MHI Eyes Uncharted Waters on Its Way to Sustainable Growth

first_imgzoom Japan’s Mitsubishi Heavy Industries is set to enter uncharted territory starting from 2018 as the company aims to achieve sustainable growth.With its expanding activities in Japan, but also across Asia, the Americas and the rest of the world, MHI said it needs to continue to develop solutions that respond to global needs and “take on the world’s toughest challenges.”Together with expansion, the company aims for a future of sustainable development, as outlined in the UN Sustainable Development Goals.“MHI now stands at a crossroads in our evolution. We must create a new way forward that combines our core engineering strengths with revolutionary new advancements in IT and digital communications,” Shunichi Miyanaga, MHI President and CEO, said.Based on these fundamental guidelines, the company expects 2018 to be the first step towards a new stage of sustainable growth.With only three months remaining in the final year of MHI’s 2015 Medium-Term Business Plan, MHI informed that it has fallen short in reaching the financial targets set in the plan, despite implementing a number of measures.“While this is certainly disappointing, I want all of us to continue to make progress toward better results in the future,” Miyanaga added.The company will continue to make progress on the issues that remain. In May 2018, MHI is scheduled to release its new Medium-Term Business Plan, when it will take “the next step toward our new phase of sustainable growth.”last_img read more

"MHI Eyes Uncharted Waters on Its Way to Sustainable Growth"

Closures announced during DetroitWindsor Tunnel renovations

first_imgDETROIT – An underwater commuter traffic tunnel between Detroit and Windsor, Ont., is closing for more than a week as part of a nearly $22-million renovation project.The Detroit-Windsor Tunnel is scheduled to close Friday night and reopen the morning of Oct. 30 as crews replace the concrete ceiling and make other infrastructure improvements.Border crossings in the Detroit area will be diverted to the Ambassador Bridge.Renovations are scheduled to be completed next June.Other periodic closings are planned during the construction project, and details are posted on the tunnel’s website .The tunnel opened in 1930 and runs beneath the surface of the Detroit River.About 12,000 vehicles use the tunnel daily.last_img read more

"Closures announced during DetroitWindsor Tunnel renovations"

UN team to explore ways of supporting security in violencewracked Somalia

The team, which includes the UN Deputy Special Representative for Somalia, Charles Petrie, as well as representatives from UN Political Office for Somalia (UNPOS) and the departments of peacekeeping, field support and political affairs at UN Headquarters in New York, will hold talks in Nairobi and Addis Ababa. Violence continues in Somalia, which has not had a functioning central government since 1991, despite the signing in June of the UN-facilitated Djibouti Agreement by the Transitional Federal Government (TFG) and the Alliance for the Re-liberation of Somalia (ARS). Both sides agreed in that pact to end their conflict and called on the UN to deploy an international stabilization force to the troubled nation. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has stated that conditions are not yet right for a UN peacekeeping operation in Somalia. Instead, he recommends strengthening the AU Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) through financing, logistical support, training, equipment and other reinforcements facilitated by the UN and Member States. Mr. Ban has “undertaken a number of contacts, including with regional leaders, to ensure that AMISOM urgently receives the necessary support,” according to a statement issued by UNPOS. In addition to discussing ways to support AMISOM, the team will also hold consultations on support to Somalia’s transitional security forces and police. UN Special Representative for Somalia Ahmedou Ould-Abdallah said he was hopeful that the visit would result in concrete and swift action. Meanwhile, the World Food Programme (WFP) reported that gunmen shot and killed one of its staff members yesterday near the Somali capital, Mogadishu – the second killing of a WFP worker in the country in three days. Mohamud Omar Moallim, a 49-year old food monitor, was killed during a distribution to displaced people about 10 kilometres northwest of Mogadishu, according to the agency. Despite the challenging security circumstances in Somalia, WFP has managed to provide food aid to more than 1.5 million needy people in the country each month. WFP shipped some 260,000 metric tons of food to Somalia in 2008, almost four times what it provided in 2007. An estimated of 3.2 million people in Somalia – 43 per cent of the population – are in need of humanitarian assistance as a result of the combined effects of conflict and drought. 9 January 2009A United Nations team will head to the Horn of Africa next week to explore how the world body can support the African Union (AU) peacekeeping force in Somalia, which has seen an upsurge in violence in recent months despite the signing of a UN-facilitated peace accord last June. read more

"UN team to explore ways of supporting security in violencewracked Somalia"

Australias ruling coalition elected to surprise third term

Australia’s conservative Prime Minister Scott Morrison praised “quiet Australians” for delivering his party a “miracle” election victory on Saturday after his Labor challenger conceded defeat.Morrison had entered the election as an underdog, but after a hard-fought campaign defied the odds to extend the Liberal-National coalition’s six-year rule. Pre-election opinion polls had suggested that the coalition would lose its bid for a third three-year term, and that Morrison would have had one of the shortest tenures as prime minister in the 118-year history of the Australian federation. “I have always believed in miracles!” he told jubilant supporters in Sydney. “How good is Australia!”? Earlier, National broadcaster ABC called the election for Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s coalition.The Liberal Party-led coalition seemed on track to win at least 73 seats and the opposition Labor Party at least 65 seats in the 151-seat House of Representatives, where parties need a majority to form a government.The close result from Saturday’s election raises the prospect of the coalition forming a minority government. Australian election favourite Bill Shorten conceded defeat after his defeat in national polls on Saturday, saying he would resign as party leader. “It is obvious that Labor will not be able to form the next government”, Shorten told disbelieving supporters in Melbourne.“In the national interest, a short while ago I called (Liberal leader, Prime Minister) Scott Morrison to congratulate him,” he said. Morrison is the conservatives’ third prime minister since they were first elected in 2013. He replaced Malcolm Turnbull in a leadership ballot of government colleagues in August. (Courtesy TRT World) read more

"Australias ruling coalition elected to surprise third term"

Rage 2 review Why fun with guns isnt enough

Score: 6.0/10  Platform: PlayStation 4 (reviewed), Xbox One, Windows PC Developer: id Software, Avalanche Publisher: Bethesda Softworks Release Date: May 14, 2019 ESRB: M A special kind of frustration swells up from playing a game that delivers pristine action mechanics set within a creatively vapid world.Rage 2, a sequel to id Software’s mostly forgotten 2011 post-apocalypse shooter Rage, provides players a cornucopia of fine action filled with imaginative weapons and abilities — local singularities FTW! — and fully invests in the storied studio’s trademark gore, with headshots that make skulls bloodily blast off bodies with a satisfying pop and micro-rockets that transform people into unidentifiable smears of scarlet. And there’s no shortage of ways to augment and improve your guns and skills via perks and upgrades. By the end you’ll be an unmitigated agent of havoc and carnage of the peculiar variety that only springs from and exists within the weird world of video games.Qualms with the frenetic, fantastical firefights are few and far between. But it seems the designers spent all of their inventiveness on the action, making the world in which it is set feel bland and lifeless by comparison. Days Gone review: Surviving the freakshow Tom Clancy’s The Division 2 review: Polished and playable, right out of the gate Anthem review: Think Destiny, with better storytelling, worse loot and more repetition We are thrust unceremoniously into a fictional universe that players unfamiliar with the game’s nearly decade-old predecessor will be hard pressed to understand. It’s clear that there’s been a calamity of some sort that has laid waste to the world, leaving the population looking like cyberpunk rejects from one of William Gibson’s lesser stories. And there’s a bad guy who was supposed to be killed in the last game who now needs to be killed again because he’s running an outfit of bad guys intent on doing bad things with no apparent motivation beyond that they’re bad. Kudos to anyone who can make more of the plot than that.The characters aren’t much more developed than the story. Our hero — a soldier named Walker who is trained to be a Ranger (that’s about as clever as the humour gets) — has almost no back story and zero personality. He (or she) functions as little more than a player avatar who occasionally talks tough and grunts in appropriate circumstances.It’s the setting, though, that disappoints most. Rage 2‘s post-apocalyptic landscape is an uninspired expanse of desert dunes, toxic swamps, and twisty canyons that could have been plucked from Borderlands, Mad Max, or any number of other wasteland adventures. And it’s pocked with a seemingly endless collection of cookie-cutter encampments. Gas stations that need to be cleared of goons. Mutant nests so similar in design you’ll experience déjà vu. Ugly, rusted, maze-like fortresses built of scrap. Once you’ve cleared a couple of one type of location, you’ll have seen pretty much everything that the other dozen or more waiting to be found have to show you. Suffice to say the thrill of discovery is not a driving force here.That I’ve continued to play is testament solely to the great gunplay. Collecting — and then gradually augmenting — weapons and abilities has proven a powerful lure. Once I unlocked the Firestorm revolver — a pistol that fires rounds that explode on command at the touch of a button — I couldn’t wait to head out and give it a whirl on the nearest den of enemies. And each time I upgraded and modified it to make it an even more efficient and spectacular weapon I was just as eager to do it all over. This is the game’s hook, and it’s a great one.But it’s not sufficient to fully satisfy. Rage 2 is simply fun with guns, and there are plenty of games that fit that bill. Pity, when it could have been so much more. read more

"Rage 2 review Why fun with guns isnt enough"

UN regrets Iraqs use of death penalty

While recognizing the serious challenge posed to the rule of law by terrorism, the insurgency and criminal activity, the UN issued a statement voicing regret over Iraq’s choice and pointing out that evidence around the world suggests that capital punishment is a poor deterrent to crime. “The United Nations will continue to assist the Government in Iraq in its attempts to foster a culture based on the rule of law and respect of human rights,” the statement said. “In this spirit, the United Nations urges the Government of Iraq to commute all future sentences of capital punishment and to base its legitimate quest for security on the protection and promotion to the right to life.” read more

"UN regrets Iraqs use of death penalty"

Global food prices steady in December 2013 prices third highest on record

In a news release, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) said its most recent Food Price Index averaged 206.7 points, nearly the same as the 206.4 in November. The FAO’s Index measures the monthly change in international prices of a basket of 55 food commodities, including meat, dairy, sugar, and cereals. “Last month, the FAO Food Price Index remained elevated as strong demand for certain high-protein foods continued to drive up prices overall, countering falling prices of major food crops after last year’s abundant harvests,” said FAO economist Abdolreza Abbassian.A sharp increase in dairy prices and high meat values balanced out a steep decline in sugar quotations and lower cereal and oil prices, the UN agency summarized.In a news release, the FAO said the price index for 2013 overall averaged 209.9 points – the third highest annual value on record – down 1.6 per cent from 2012 and well below the 2011 peak of 230.1.The price index of dairy in December averaged 264.4 points, a rise of 13.2 points over November. Demand for milk powder in China among the factors for the strong demand. The gain is part of an upward trend. In 2013, the dairy price index averaged 243, its highest annual average ever, FAO said. The price for meat is also up, driven in particular by demand from China and Japan. The price index averaged 188.1 points in December, in line with historically high levels in 2013 overall, the UN agency reported. Meanwhile, record harvests kept cereal prices down during the year, particularly wheat and maize. The Cereal Price Index averaged 219.1 points, down as much as 17 points or 7.2 per cent from 2012, according to the latest figures. The grains index for December dipped 2.8 points from the previous month to 191.5 points, its lowest since August 2010.Sugar also slipped, 15.8 points from November to 234.9. A boom sugarcane harvest in Brazil, the world’s largest producer and exporter, along with good harvests in Thailand and China, kept prices down. FAO’s Vegetable Oil Price Index averaged 196 points in December, a decrease of 2.5 points from November. For 2013 overall, the index averaged 193 points, as compared with 224 points in 2012. read more

"Global food prices steady in December 2013 prices third highest on record"

UK weather Storm Doris death toll rises to three as mother is

first_imgIn Scotland snowfall saw the M80 closed in both directions, as well as schools shut and some ferry services cancelled.In Ireland almost 46,000 households woke up to no electricity after violent gusts battered large swathes of the country throughout the night.As Doris cleared to the East, the Met Office warned drivers to be wary of ice on Friday in Scotland, Northern Ireland, and North West England.”It’s an ice risk so when people wake up tomorrow morning and head out to work there could be some difficult driving conditions,” meteorologist Alex Burkill said. Storm Doris has caused havoc at Chadderton Hall Park and so tomorrow’s Primary School Cross Country is postponed. 😢— Oldham School Sport (@oldhamssp) February 24, 2017 Storm Doris smashed into North Wales and took snaps off end of Victoria Pier in Colwyn Pier With fallen trees, objects caught in overhead wires, flooding and debris on the tracks causing delays across many services, a spokesman said employees are “doing all we can to keep the network running”.Flights were also affected, with a Heathrow spokesman warning of a “10% reduction” in the airport’s schedule.Highways England also issued a weather alert on major roads.A number of carriageways were closed as Doris lashed Britain, including the M6 Thelwall Viaduct in both directions between junctions 20 and 21 in the North West and the QE2 Bridge in Dartford, Kent. The coffee giant has said it is “shocked and saddened by the terrible incident”, which happened at around midday.Miss Martin worked at the University of Wolverhampton.Vice-Chancellor, Professor Geoff Layer, said: “We are all deeply saddened by this tragic loss.”During Tahnie’s short time at the University, she made a real impact both in a professional and personal capacity. She became a very popular member of the team and was highly valued.”Two other people were also left with head injuries.A man was left in a “serious condition” in a central London hospital, following reports of “debris falling from the roof of a building” by Victoria Station at around 3pm, the Metropolitan Police said. The clear up behind 🌀 #doris #stormdoris #DorisDay— Sale G.C. Greens (@sale_greens) February 24, 2017 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. The lorry driver, a man in his 50s, died at the scene in New Cross, south east London, amid high winds at around 2.30pm yesterday.A Met Police spokesman said: “At this early stage, it is not believed that another vehicle was involved.”A girl was also left with life-threatening injuries as Storm Doris brought winds of up to 94mph to the UK.The girl, who was among multiple people seriously injured, was taken to hospital after a school sports hall ceiling collapsed as gales battered Britain.Doris is now set to leave a trail of ice, wintry showers and a 7C plunge in temperatures to around 3C (37F) in the south.The third death happened in Wolverhampton city centre when a 29-year-old woman, named on Friday as Tahnie Martin, was struck by “wooden debris” while walking past a Starbucks cafe. The Storm Doris death toll has risen to three after it emerged a mother was blown into path of a roadsweeper and a lorry driver crashed in high winds.The 32-year-old woman was pushing an empty pushchair to pick up her young child from a nearby childminder when she was struck by the vehicle in Swindon.Witnesses said the “wind took hold of her” and swept the empty pram into the path of the road cleaner. In Stoke-on-Trent a woman in her 60s was taken to hospital for a “serious head injury” after being hit by a carport roof.West Midlands Ambulance Service (WMAS) said it was called to a property in Hartshill Road shortly before 2.15pm.A spokesman said: “Crews were told the roof fell down and hit the woman, which subsequently caused her to collide with a wall.”WMAS said she was also treated for injuries to her face, hand and chest before being taken to Royal Stoke University Hospital for further care.Meanwhile, Thames Valley Police and Buckinghamshire Fire & Rescue Service were investigating whether the collapse at Southwood Middle School in Conniburrow, Milton Keynes, was due to the storm. The top wind speed of 94mph was recorded in Capel Curig, north Wales, on Thursday morning.The weather system which brought gales, snow and rain to much of the UK, caused travel disruption on the roads and rail network, brought down trees, grounded planes, and toppled large vehicles.Network Rail advised “Storm Doris has caused significant disruption throughout the country”, with an enforced speed limit on some lines. Show more Storm Doris smashed into North Wales and took snaps off end of Victoria Pier in Colwyn PierCredit:DGDImages / Alamy Live Newslast_img read more

"UK weather Storm Doris death toll rises to three as mother is"

Spotify could launch later this year in the US but without the

first_imgThere’s a lot of anticipation for iTunes to finally enter the cloud as a streaming music subscription service, but for us Europeans, we’ve already got iTunes in the cloud, and it’s called Spotify. The only problem is that Spotify — as amazing as it is — is limited to Europe, and only some European countries at that… but it might be coming to American shores soon, if the Financial Times it to be believed.According to that paper, Spotify is trying to launch in the United States with as aggressive a time table as possible. This isn’t really news: Spotify has previously said that they want to launch in the United States by the end of the year. Unfortunately, if Spotify is successful, it looks likely at this point that the service will be hobbled by the notoriously convoluted politics of American music licensing when it finally reaches domestic shores.What’s the problem? In a word, Universal, Sony, Warner and EMI still haven’t inked any deals with Spotify for US licensing of their artists. In the past, Spotify has been patient, refusing to gimp the service by leaving out the major labels from launch, but Spotify’s own shaky financials now seem to be pushing their hands: it recorded a £16.6m ($26.4m) loss in the UK last year, and the company’s auditors seem unsure if the service will ever start being profitable.As such, Spotify wants to launch in America as soon as possible, even if they don’t have any major artists to boast of, just to show that they are still growing. It’s sad news for American music fans who have held out hope for Spotify coming to the States for the last two years: once Spotify lands in America, it might be Spotify in name only.Read more at Financial Timeslast_img read more

"Spotify could launch later this year in the US but without the"

Get out of my country Indian man shot dead in US in

first_img Share Tweet Email2 Friday 24 Feb 2017, 10:30 PM 87 Comments ‘Get out of my country’ – Indian man shot dead in US in apparent hate crime The shooting dead of 32-year-old Srinivas Kuchibhotla has caused waves in his home country. Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article 28,375 Views “I am shocked at the shooting incident in Kansas,” tweeted India’s minister of external affairs Sushma Swaraj.© – AFP, 2017Read: Doctor who skipped work to play tennis among staff investigated in mass absenteeism scamRead: Germany’s anger after Russian theme park creates mock-Reichstag for children to attack By AFPcenter_img I am shocked at the shooting incident in Kansas in which Srinivas Kuchibhotla has been killed. My heartfelt condolences to bereaved family.— Chowkidar Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) February 24, 2017 Feb 24th 2017, 10:30 PM Source: Sushma Swaraj/Twitter Short URL Police photo of Adam Purinton Source: APAN INDIAN MAN has been killed and another wounded in a shooting being investigated by US authorities in the midwestern state of Kansas as a possible hate crime.The two men, one of whom reportedly had lived in the US for more than a decade, were shot at a bar outside Kansas City late on Wednesday, according to The Kansas City Star newspaper.Srinivas Kuchibhotla, 32, was killed and Alok Madasani, 32, was wounded in the attack. Both men worked as aviation systems engineers for GPS manufacturer Garmin.Authorities arrested 51-year-old Adam Purinton, who allegedly told the men “get out of my country” before opening fire, according to the daily.Purinton was apprehended later the same night at a restaurant, after claiming he had killed two Middle Easterners, according to the Star.Purinton has been charged with premeditated first-degree murder and two counts of attempted premeditated first-degree murder. He is being held on a $2 million bond. FBI Special Agent Eric Jackson addressing questions from the media during a press conference at the Olathe Police Department Source: Tammy LjungbladThe FBI is trying to determine if the shooting was a hate crime, said Eric Johnson, Special Agent in Charge of the bureau’s Kansas City field office.“We’re less than 24 hours into this investigation. I have FBI personnel working this investigation from every angle,” he said.The shooting garnered headlines in Indian media, amid concerns that the immigration policies of President Donald Trump laid the groundwork for such an attack.The incident comes amid a tense atmosphere in the United States, as evidence grows of increased hate crimes since the contentious presidential campaign and the election of Donald Trump.The number of hate groups rose for the second year in a row in 2016 and anti-Muslim groups nearly tripled, according to an annual census by the Southern Poverty Law Centre. Jagan Mohan Reddy, father of Alok Madasani, speaking to the media at his residence in Hyderabad, India, today Source: Mahesh Kumar A.“The growth has been accompanied by a rash of crimes targeting Muslims,” the organisation said last week.Anti-Semitic crimes have also increased.The Jewish Community Centre Association of North America has recorded 69 bomb threat incidents at dozens of centres in 27 US states and one Canadian province since the start of the year.The Hindu American Foundation condemned the shooting, demanding that it be investigated as a hate crime.“Anything less will be an injustice to the victims and their families,” the group said.India’s government also chimed in:last_img read more

"Get out of my country Indian man shot dead in US in"

The 9 at 9 Tuesday

first_img 10,086 Views By Sean Murray Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article Short URL Tuesday 4 Apr 2017, 7:38 AM Image: Shutterstock/Vladislav Noseek Share1 Tweet Email Image: Shutterstock/Vladislav Noseek The 9 at 9: Tuesday Here’s all the news you need to know this morning. Apr 4th 2017, 7:38 AM 1 Comment EVERY MORNING, brings you the stories you need to know as you start your day.1. #TRACKER MORTGAGE: A widower who was charged the wrong interest rate may now lose the family home due to repossession.2. #RUSSIA: Sources have told Interfax news agency that police believe that yesterday’s St Petersburg attack that left 11 dead was carried out by a suicide bomber.3. #DIVORCE: A new law aims to cut the wait time for a divorce from four years to two.4. #ABUSE: A Meath man who sexually abused his fiancée’s three young daughters has been jailed for 10 years.5. #PREMATURE: The Dáil will debate extending maternity leave for the 4,500 Irish mothers who start it in hospital every year.6. #WANTED: A cute and well-behaved dog is needed to star in an opera in the National Concert Hall this month. The dog does not need to sing.7. #POLL: A majority of people think Irish should be optional in Ireland’s schools.8. #PLEA DEAL: Film director Roman Polanski has not received assurances on whether he will serve jail time if he returns to the US.9. #HISTORICAL ABUSE: A Catholic congregation has claimed that the government was “forced” to set up a €1.5 billion redress scheme for abuse victims.last_img read more

"The 9 at 9 Tuesday"

Pollution alerte à lozone dans le sudest

first_imgPollution : alerte à l’ozone dans le sud-estFrance – Si les températures caniculaires ont laissé place à une chaleur plus raisonnable dans la majeure partie du pays, la pollution à l’ozone s’est installée dans le sud-est. Des mesures d’urgence ont à nouveau dû être mises en place ce lundi dans quatre départements.Dans le Gard, le Vaucluse et les Alpes-de-Haute-Provence, c’est une alerte de niveau 1 qui a été émise, en raison d’un risque de dépassement du seuil d’ozone de 240 microgrammes par mètre cube d’air pendant 3 heures. Engendré par les transports et les activités industrielles, l’ozone est un gaz nocif pour la santé humaine, agressif pour les muqueuses oculaires et respiratoires. À lire aussiWeTransfer, selfies et des vaccins, les actus sciences que vous devez connaître ce 28 juinDans ces trois départements, les automobilistes sont invités à réduire leur vitesse de 30 km/h sur toutes les routes, tandis que les industriels ont reçu l’obligation de limiter leurs rejets polluants. Dans les Bouches-du-Rhône, l’alerte est de niveau 1 renforcé. En plus de la limitation de vitesse, les travaux de peinture en extérieur utilisant des produits à base de solvants, de même que les travaux d’entretien extérieurs nécessitant des moteurs à essence sont interdits dans le département.Dans toutes les régions concernées par cet épisode de pollution à l’ozone, il recommandé de limiter les déplacements en voiture, de préférer les transports en commun, et pour les personnes les plus sensibles, d’éviter de pratiquer des activités sportives.Le 12 juillet 2010 à 15:48 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more

"Pollution alerte à lozone dans le sudest"

EDF épinglée par lASN au sujet des fuites de la centrale de

first_imgEDF épinglée par l’ASN au sujet des fuites de la centrale de CivauxL’autorité de sûreté nucléaire (ASN) a demandé à l’exploitant français EDF de respecter la réglementation relative aux fluides radioactifs, après le rejet de tritium à la centrale nucléaire de Civaux (dans la Vienne). L’ASN “considère que cet événement révèle une attention insuffisante à l’égard des risques de contamination par le tritium”.Le 13 janvier dernier, au cours d’un contrôle de la nappe phréatique située sous la centrale de Civaux, dans la Vienne, de l’eau contenant du tritium en quantité très largement supérieure aux valeurs attendues a été retrouvée. Ainsi, 540 Becquerel par litre avaient été détectés contre 8 Bq/l en temps normal. Bien que inférieure au seuil de potabilité établi à 7.800 Bq/l pour l’Organisation mondiale de la Santé, cette quantité restait anormale.À lire aussiLe pied d’éléphant, cette effrayante masse radioactive cachée dans les entrailles de TchernobylQuelques jours plus tard, le 17 janvier, “les inspecteurs ont constaté que le revêtement” au niveau de la capacité de rétention des réservoirs d’effluents était dégradé en de nombreux endroits et n’assurait plus sa fonction d’étanchéité”, rapporte l’Autorité de sûreté nucléaire (ASN) dans son rapport publié mercredi. En effet, “des fissures sont présentes dans le béton, dont certaines ont manifestement fait l’objet d’une réparation d’étanchéité à l’aide de mastics ou de gels de silicone”. Ainsi, “de l’eau contenant du tritium s’est accumulée dans cette capacité de rétention non étanche, ce qui a conduit à un rejet non maîtrisé de tritium”.Depuis cette découverte, l’ASN s’assure que “l’exploitant met en œuvre les actions permettant d’éviter la poursuite des rejets dans la nappe”. Elle a néanmoins mis EDF en demeure “de restaurer l’étanchéité de la capacité de rétention des réservoirs KER sous dix jours” et de “procéder à la réparation pérenne de cet ouvrage avant le 31 août”, et ce “même si ce rejet de tritium non maîtrisé a un impact très faible sur l’environnement”.Le 26 janvier 2012 à 16:29 • Maxime Lambertlast_img read more

"EDF épinglée par lASN au sujet des fuites de la centrale de"

Wrongway driver still at large

first_imgA wrong-way driver traveling south in the northbound lanes of Interstate 5 Wednesday morning struck a vehicle near the 179th Street exit, according to a Washington State Patrol spokesman.The driver continued navigating a green Ford Explorer against traffic even after sideswiping the vehicle as it entered the freeway, said Trooper Steve Schatzel.The collision occurred at about 8:15 a.m., shortly after spotters reported the wrong-way driver. No injuries were reported.A dispatcher at about 8:30 a.m. said 911 was no longer receiving calls reporting the SUV. Schatzel said Wednesday evening the driver had not been located.John Branton: 360-735-4513 or read more

"Wrongway driver still at large"

Free bus service for early voters in Broward County

first_img(WSVN) – Broward County is offering free bus service to help early voters get to the polls.The offer will last all day until 7 p.m., Saturday.Commissioners approved the fare-free Saturday to make transportation affordable for would-be voters to get to an early voting site.The free fare is available for all bus riders and not just exclusively for voters heading to the polls.Broward’s free rides will not be offered on Election Day, Tuesday.Early voting ends Sunday.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.last_img read more

"Free bus service for early voters in Broward County"

GigaOM Raises 6 Million in Round Led By Reed Elsevier

first_imgReed Elsevier Ventures, which it says typically invests between $1 million and $10 million in media, Internet and technology companies, likes the revenue mix GigaOM offers. “We only invest in media companies with the potential to become hugely profitable global companies, and GigaOM-with its innovative subscription research business, growing readership, and strong conference business – is firmly in that camp,” says Reed Elsevier Ventures general partner Kevin Brown in a statement.Malik says the company will also bolster its editorial coverage, expanding to the East Coast and Europe. Former Guardian tech writer Bobbie Johnson was hired to head up a London office. “We have demonstrated that paid content (not paywalls) can work, as long as you can provide value to your community. The community in return rewards us with attention – by reading our blog content and participating in it, attending our events and buying subscriptions for our premium information service. Now we are going to scale our operations – and that means working on delivering more value,” he says. GigaOM, a media company targeting the tech space, has secured a $6 million round of funding led by Reed Elsevier’s investment group Reed Elsevier Ventures. Existing venture partners Alloy Ventures and True Ventures also participated in the round. According to the company, the capital will be used to expand its subscription-based research business, hire more analysts and boost its stable of live events. The company began diversifying its product offerings three years ago, particularly through the introduction of events and its research service GigaOM Pro, a subscription-based market research platform. “In 2008, right after my heart attack, I told [Paul Walborsky, CEO] and our board a very simple thing – this company cannot rely on one person, one revenue stream and one business,” writes GigaOM founder Om Malik in a blog post. “Our focus as a digital information company shifted from page views to engagement. And once we made the shift, we came up with the revenue models that match our core value proposition – content with high impact.”The company says it has “dozens” of Fortune 500 enterprise accounts for its Pro line of research and has been growing 30 percent annually across its sites, which now attract 4 million monthly uniques. last_img read more

"GigaOM Raises 6 Million in Round Led By Reed Elsevier"

Tamil Nadu closes Vedanta copper smelter permanently after bloody protest

first_imgWomen shout slogans during a protest against the government and police forces after at least nine people were killed when police fired at protesters calling for the closure of a Vedanta Resources-controlled copper smelter in Thootukudi, in southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, in Chennai, India, May 22, 2018.REUTERS/P.RavikumarThe Tamil Nadu government on Monday ordered the permanent closure of a copper smelter controlled by London-listed Vedanta Resources after 13 people protesting to demand its shutdown on environmental concerns were killed last week.”We have taken a decision to permanently shut down the plant and today issued government orders to do the same,” Edappadi K Palaniswami, chief minister of Tamil Nadu said in a statement after meeting officials, including from the pollution department.Residents and environmental activists have long demanded a shutdown of the copper smelter, India’s second-biggest with an annual production of more than 400,000 tonnes, citing air and water pollution. Vedanta denies the accusations of pollution.The company on Monday called the closure of the plant it has operated for over 22 years an “unfortunate development”.”We will study the order and decide on the future course of action,” Vedanta told Reuters in a statement.As news of a government order to shut the plant spread, about 100 locals gathered to witness the sealing of the smelter’s main entrance. Fatima Babu, a long-time campaigner against the plant, arrived at the smelter’s entrance shouting “Thank you authorities”.”We are finally free, we could have been happier if so many people had not died. This is for all of them,” Muthu Pandi, a driver who had come to see the plant being shut, told Reuters.The district’s main administrative officer, called the collector, supervised the sealing as the crowd whistled and cheered from behind police barricades placed 50 metres away from the entrance. They shouted “Long live the collector,” as the collector’s car departed.In the heart of the city, locals gathered near an electrical appliances showroom to watch the news on TV channels.The chief of Vedanta’s India copper business, P. Ramnath, told Reuters on Friday the company would legally fight any attempt to close the plant and it aimed to “build our bridges” with the community.The plant, in the coastal city of Thoothukudi, has been shut since late March for maintenance and pending a renewal of its licence, even as residents continued largely peaceful protests demanding it be shut for good.The opposition escalated on Tuesday when thousands of people marched towards a government office on the 100th day of the protest. Ten people were killed in police firing that day; three more died in subsequent days.Vedanta says it has already evacuated about 3,500 employees from the plant site due to the tensions.[ Source- Reuters]last_img read more

"Tamil Nadu closes Vedanta copper smelter permanently after bloody protest"

Banks may refuse to release funds to save Anil Ambani jail time

first_imgIBTimes VideoRelated VideosMore videos Play VideoPauseMute0:01/0:58Loaded: 0%0:01Progress: 0%Stream TypeLIVE-0:57?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 … Close Ericsson case: Anil Ambani guilty of contempt, directed to pay Rs 453 crore or face 3 months jailcenter_img Lenders of the beleaguered Anil Ambani-led Reliance Communication’s (RCom) are unlikely to agree to a request by the debt-laden company for releasing the Rs 260 crore it received as income-tax refunds and lying in a bank account, to pay off Swedish equipment maker Ericsson, a media report says.The Supreme Court has in a strongly worded order directed Anil Ambani as boss of the Reliance ADA Group to pay Ericsson some Rs 550 crore in four weeks or serve a three-month jail term. The court has instructed the registrar to release Rs 118 crore that RCom had deposited in the court to Ericsson and asked the company to pay the balance amount, Business Standard website said.If the banks seek the approval of the respective boards to meet RCom request, there is likely to be a delay in decision-making, defeating the very purpose of the move, sources say.”RCom is confident of raising the balance about Rs 200 crore for payment to Ericsson, in order to ensure that the entire Rs 550 crore, plus interest thereon, stands paid to Ericsson, well within the time of four weeks allowed by the Supreme Court,” RCom had said in a statement, according to the Business Line.This is in addition to the Rs 118-crore RCom had deposited with the Supreme Court Registry, said the court order. The court will hand over this deposit to Ericsson in a week.RCom’s deadline to pay Ericsson Rs 550 crore ended on December 15, which had been personally guaranteed by Anil Ambani.The Anil Ambani group company got into trouble after a spectrum sale deal with elder brother Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Jio for telecom spectrum sales could not go through after the Department of Telecommunication (DoT) objected citing back dues. Jio was not willing to give the undertaking to meet the dues that RCom owed DoT.The court had earlier directed the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) to provide a no-objection certificate (NOC) to RCom for the spectrum sale. But DoT took the stand that the NOC could be given only if the buyer undertook to clear RCom’s past debts.Following the failure to meet the deadline for paying Ericsson, RCom moved a bankruptcy application with the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) following which the shares of several Anil Ambani group companies like RCom, and Reliance Power crashed. The fall in market capitalisations forced Reliance Power’s lenders to sell the shares pledged with them as security for loans. Anil Ambani called the share sale by the lenders including Edelweiss Financial Services Ltd and L&T Finance illegal, while the creditors maintained the stand that failure to provide the margin after the value of the pledged shares eroded triggered the sales.Financial troubles have hit Anil Ambani when he has been mired in a political controversy following the inclusion of his fledgeling Reliance Defence as an offset partner in Rs 58,000-crore deal that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government signed with Dassault Aviation to buy 36 Rafale medium multirole fighter jets for the Indian Air Force (IAF).The opposition has attacked the Bharatiya Janata Party-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government over alleged favour to the Anil Ambani-led company with the general elections 2019 just weeks away. Congress president Rahul Gandhi-led opposition United Progressive Alliance (UPA) has mounted a scathing attack on the government over the deal. Anil Dhirubhai Ambanilast_img read more

"Banks may refuse to release funds to save Anil Ambani jail time"

As Saudi prince Salman rose the Bin Laden business empire crumbled

first_imgSaudi Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and logo of Saudi Binladin Group. Photo: ReutersSoon after prince Mohammed bin Salman became second in line to the throne of Saudi Arabia, he turned his sights to the sprawling empire of the Saudi Binladin Group.In 2015, the prince, then 29, approached Bakr bin Laden, chairman of the family-owned construction giant, and told him he wanted to become a partner in the firm, according to six people briefed on the exchange.The prince pitched his offer as a patriotic opportunity to help transform the kingdom’s oil-dependent economy. It would also, he said, ease the financial strain on the company as the government reined in infrastructure spending to cope with a drop in oil prices.As head of the Saudi royal family’s favoured building contractor, Bakr bin Laden was accustomed to obliging royal requests. But he hesitated at the prince’s approach, these sources said. The construction mogul replied that he needed time to consult other family shareholders.In the months that followed, Prince Mohammed bin Salman, known by many simply as MbS, grew more powerful, rising to crown prince in June 2017. He championed economic reform and took aim at widespread corruption.The Bin Ladens, in contrast, experienced a dramatic fall from grace.Three Bin Laden brothers, senior executives in the family firm, were among more than 200 businessmen, royals and officials detained in November 2017 in an anti-corruption drive ordered by the prince. Bakr and two of his brothers, Saleh and Saad, eventually transferred their combined 36.2 percent stake in the family firm to the state in April 2018. Bakr, in his late 60s, is still in custody, although no charges have been made public.Reuters spoke to more than two dozen Saudi Binladin Group employees, family friends, government officials, bankers and businessmen to tell the story of the fall of the Bin Ladens. Few of the sources would go on the record, citing the Bin Ladens’ long-standing preference for privacy and restrictions on public criticism of the Saudi government. These sources charted the family’s reversal of fortune, starting with that 2015 exchange between Bakr and Prince Mohammed and ending with the state taking management control of the family firm.The Bin Ladens’ undoing exposes the contradictions in Prince Mohammed’s plan to build a modern economy, some economists say. He has embraced privatisation, hoping to inject dynamism, yet the state has intervened in firms such as Saudi Binladin Group. He has tackled corruption, yet there has been little transparency around the process. One Saudi businessman said the Bin Laden saga had become a “symbol of what’s happening between the government and the private sector – a breakdown of trust.”Asked to comment, a senior government official said Prince Mohammed did not seek a stake in Saudi Binladin Group in 2015. The Saudi government, he added, had saved the company from collapse after it experienced financial difficulties “coupled with extensive supervisory and governance weakness.” Saudi Binladin Group was “a vital Saudi commercial entity,” he said. The Bin Laden family and its representatives did not respond to a request for comment.New King, New RulesThe Bin Laden clan has known trouble before: The black sheep of the family, Osama, masterminded the attacks on America of Sept. 11, 2001. But the Bin Ladens, led by Bakr, survived that storm. Their reckoning began with King Abdullah’s death in January 2015.Saudi Binladin Group had grown from humble beginnings in 1931, nourished by the Bin Laden family’s good relations with successive rulers. Royal contracts were arranged informally, sometimes scribbled on paper over coffee.“It was the ‘inshallah bukra’ [God willing, tomorrow] way of doing business, with a meeting that might have been scheduled for 11 a.m. in the office, rescheduled to 4 p.m. and then actually taking place at 2 a.m. at the palace,” said Thomas Fallows, an American banker who worked in Riyadh for eight years.In the last months of King Abdullah’s life, oil prices tumbled to $60 a barrel from above $100 at their peak, slashing the kingdom’s revenues. By the time 79-year-old King Salman acceded to the throne, projects commissioned in the boom years were becoming a burden. These included a Riyadh financial district, an airport in Jeddah and an economic city on the Red Sea coast.Salman quickly appointed Prince Mohammed, a previously little-known son, as deputy crown prince. Mohammed also took control of the kingdom’s important economic and defence portfolios.As a teenager, Prince Mohammed had regularly attended meetings with his father, Riyadh’s governor at the time, but left little impression, said a former senior Western diplomat. But Salman saw in the boy qualities he prized, according to Saudi and Western sources. “Clever, rugged, understands the locals,” said one Western policy adviser. Other princes went abroad, but Prince Mohammed stayed in Saudi Arabia, earning a law degree and investing in the Riyadh stock market. By the time Salman became king, the young prince was sitting in on meetings with foreign officials and silently communicating with his father via iPad, the former Western diplomat said.Reform-minded and ambitious, Prince Mohammed was keen to challenge the status quo. He introduced changes to streamline government, diversify the economy and cut costs, including slashing construction spending. One of the new government’s first moves in 2015 was to order a review of state contracts, with a focus on the big projects on which Saudi Binladin Group depended, said two sources.Asked about the results of this review, the senior government official said, “The government is keen to review all projects, including those contracts that may have a suspicion of corruption or negligence in their sites.”Prince Mohammed encouraged Saudi Binladin Group to sell shares in an initial public offering, according to seven sources familiar with the discussions, part of efforts to develop the kingdom’s capital markets. The Bin Ladens had previously shelved IPO plans begun in 2011, worried that they would not get a good price in a stock market battered by low oil prices, and put off by the red tape involved in a share issue. The family was reluctant to revive the idea in 2015, when market conditions were worse, these seven sources said.Asked to comment, the senior government official denied that Prince Mohammed had promoted the idea that Saudi Binladin Group should sell shares in an IPO.Then, in September 2015, a construction crane owned by Saudi Binladin Group collapsed in Mecca’s Grand Mosque, killing 107 people just before the start of Islam’s annual haj pilgrimage. The government moved against the company, suspending it from receiving new state contracts and barring its board members and senior executives from traveling abroad. It also ordered the Finance Ministry to review the firm’s existing projects, citing unspecified “shortcomings.”A senior Saudi Binladin Group executive and a source close to the family said the crane accident gave the government an opening to act against the firm. The executive said Saudi Binladin Group wasn’t responsible for the site at the time – the work fell under the supervision of local authorities in Mecca. The senior government official disputed this, saying it was standard practice that the contractor supervised the site. A legal case over the incident was still pending, he added.The Bin Laden family “took the slap on the hand and accepted it,” the executive said. “They would never speak out against the king or the crown prince. They are loyal servants.”The family tried to limit the damage. Bakr sent a letter to brother Saleh formally handing him responsibility for the company, hoping that a change of management would placate the government, according to two people who saw the letter. But the plan didn’t work. As payments from the state dried up, Saudi Binladin Group’s finances deteriorated and it stopped paying tens of thousands of its workers, leading to riots. By mid-2016, much of the group’s construction work was stalled, including at projects essential to Prince Mohammed’s reform plans.Again the Bin Ladens tried to defuse the situation. Saudi Binladin Group hired dozens of finance and management professionals from overseas, including former Morgan Stanley banker Klaus Froehlich as chief financial officer. Froehlich, who remains CFO, came armed with years of experience in Saudi deal making. He also had ties to Mohammed al-Jadaan, who would soon be appointed finance minister, two sources said. Al-Jadaan did not respond to a request for comment.Creditors who had been struggling to reach Saudi Binladin Group during its crisis said communication improved after Froehlich arrived. Government payments started coming through again. Financial pressure eased. The company also put plans for a public stock offering back on the table, bowing to state pressure to “recycle” some of the money it had made over the decades back into the kingdom, according to six people familiar with the plans. It appeared that relations between the Bin Ladens and the government were on the mend.But the detente would not last long. Saudi Arabia was careening toward a recession, and market conditions for a listing were worsening. To the government’s irritation, the stock offering plans stalled again because of this deteriorating environment. “The rulers and MbS saw [the Bin Ladens] as a leech sucking the lifeblood out of Saudi Arabia but offering nothing in return,” said one person who had worked on the company’s restructuring. “They ran out of patience.”In June 2017, Prince Mohammed replaced his cousin, security chief Prince Mohammed bin Nayef, as heir apparent, further centralising the levers of power. More than ever, Prince Mohammed was in a position to do something about the Bin Ladens.DownfallOn the night of Nov. 4, 2017, Saudi authorities detained Bakr bin Laden in Jeddah along with more than 200 other members of the Saudi elite, in what officials said was a crackdown on corruption. Dozens of Bin Laden family members, including the brothers’ children, had their bank accounts frozen and were banned from travelling abroad, said associates of the family. Brothers who were abroad at the time were recalled to the kingdom.For Bakr, it was the beginning of a detention that has lasted more than 10 months. Like many others, he was first held at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Riyadh. So were his brothers Saleh and Saad, fellow major shareholders. Other Bin Laden brothers – Omar, Ahmed, Mohammed, Abdullah and Yehya among them – were brought to the hotel for shorter periods, according to four family associates.The purge affected royals, ministers and business leaders. The Bin Laden family’s hometown of Jeddah, once the economic capital of Saudi Arabia, was particularly hard hit. Many of the city’s merchant families had maintained close relationships with previous kings; few of them were spared in the crackdown.The government publicly has not said precisely why the Bin Ladens – or any of the other individuals caught up in the anti-corruption campaign – were detained. King Salman said at the time the purge was in response to “exploitation by some of the weak souls who have put their own interests above the public interest, in order to, illicitly, accrue money.”Two sources said the Bin Laden brothers received little attention in the hotel and were left alone in their rooms watching TV and eating room service. One family associate said a younger brother told him he was never informed why he was there, had no access to a lawyer and was barely visited by interrogators. Like others in the Ritz, they were made to keep the doors to their rooms open and a doctor came to check on them regularly. Authorities also employed a notary to facilitate the changing of power of attorney on assets. One brother described it bluntly to a friend upon his release: “It was a shitty experience.”Asked to comment, the senior government official referred Reuters to statements issued at the time by the kingdom’s Attorney General. These statements said suspects had “the same rights and treatment as any other Saudi citizen.”“Everyone is presumed innocent until proven guilty, and everyone’s legal rights will be preserved,” Attorney General Sheikh Saud Al Mojeb said on Nov. 5, 2017.The Ritz was cleared of prisoners in late January but Bakr is still in detention in Riyadh, able to receive visits only from his immediate family members, according to five people familiar with the situation. Asked about Bakr’s whereabouts and the status of the investigation, the senior government official referred Reuters to the Attorney General. The Attorney General did not respond to a request for comment.The other brothers are at home in Jeddah, but keeping a low profile. Saleh, the most gregarious, has returned to playing card games with friends, said one acquaintance. Stripped of many of his assets, including a palace in Jeddah bestowed by King Abdullah, he has been visiting banks to ask for help, according to one lender. “He’s putting a brave face on,” the lender said.Authorities seized the title deeds to the homes of senior brothers, including Bakr’s villa overlooking the Red Sea, as part of settlements for their release, four sources said. The state also took private jets, cash, jewelry and Saad’s $90 million automobile collection, which included limited edition Ferraris and other rare Italian cars, said two sources. Bakr’s son Nawaf was relieved of every Maserati in his personal showroom.Asked to comment, the senior government official referred Reuters to the Attorney General’s Office. It did not respond. In a statement at the time of the Ritz detentions, Attorney General Saud Al Mojeb estimated that corruption and embezzlement had cost Saudi Arabia at least $100 billion over several decades. In Dec. 2017, he said most detainees faced with corruption allegations had agreed to a “settlement,” involving assets including real estate, cash and securities.The TakeoverThe core of the Bin Laden family’s settlement with the government involved the conglomerate itself.On April 23, the government finalised the transfer of 36.2 percent of the company, representing the shares held by Bakr, Saleh and Saad, to an entity called Istidama Holding Company, according to a Commerce Ministry document reviewed by Reuters. Two people who have dealt with Istidama said it was set up by the Ministry of Finance to park the proceeds of settlements agreed between the government and individuals detained in the corruption purge. The senior government official confirmed to Reuters that the Ministry of Finance owns Istidama. There are no public filings about Istidama because it is not a listed firm, and Reuters was unable to contact the company.The government established a five-man committee to oversee the running of Saudi Binladin Group. Its members include Abdulrehman al-Harkan, a former chief executive of Riyadh-based developer Dar Al Arkan; Khaled Nahas, a board member of petrochemical producer Saudi Basic Industries Corp; and Khalid al-Khowaiter, chief financial officer at Advanced Electronics Company, a state-established technology firm. These government appointees are considered by many close to the company to be a front for the rulers. “The bottom line is that the government has taken over,” said one banker in Jeddah.Harkan, Nahas and Khowaiter did not respond to requests for comment. The senior government official said the supervisory committee was “an independent committee that represents the interests of all partners.”The remaining two-thirds of Saudi Binladin Group are still held by 15 younger Bin Laden brothers, according to the Commerce Ministry document. Two family representatives were appointed to the oversight committee – Yehya, who ran the back office, and Abdullah, a Harvard-educated lawyer who handled the conglomerate’s interests in the United States. Several sources interpreted their inclusion as a token gesture by the government. The brothers and their representatives did not respond to requests for comment.The void left by the family’s diminished role was filled by Harkan, the developer, who reports to the royal court and to Finance Minister Mohammed al-Jadaan, according to the group executive. As chairman of the committee and the effective head of Saudi Binladin Group, Harkan was involved in securing an 11 billion riyal ($3 billion) loan from the Ministry of Finance in April. He has also met with creditors, primarily local banks, to offer reassurances about the group’s future. Harkan told those present that the company was a “mess and hopelessly insolvent,” but that he had been appointed by King Salman to lead its turnaround, said one attendee. To the incredulity of some of those listening, Harkan also explained the brothers were “relieved to be absolved of their responsibilities.”Despite those assurances, the company’s future remains uncertain. As Harkan has told creditors, plans drawn up after Froehlich was hired will be dusted off. The estimated 537 companies that make up the conglomerate, from construction to energy, will be broken up and the name of the company changed to distance it from the Bin Laden legacy.Also at issue is money owed to Saudi Binladin Group. After the Ritz detentions, what one source described as an “army of accountants” began combing through the company’s books, trying to make sense of the government’s liabilities to the firm. A person close to the family gauged it at nearly $40 billion. A company director estimated the amount was smaller. The senior government official said the government had no liabilities to the firm, but there were “some disputed payments among several government agencies that are being addressed.”Life After The Bin LadensSaudi Binladin Group has 93 projects in hand and ties to 1,400 subcontractors, but most of its work is on hold. The company is focusing its efforts on delivering one massive project, commissioned by Prince Mohammed. The project is NEOM, a $500 billion business zone on the Red Sea coast that is the centrepiece of Mohammed’s vision for a modern, dynamic Saudi Arabia. The city will have its own legal system designed to attract international investors in high tech industries such as biotechnology, advanced manufacturing and tourism.But the first buildings commissioned at the site were more traditional – opulent seaside palaces. These included a replica of the palace that Saudi Binladin Group completed for King Salman in Tangier, Morocco, said three sources, one of them working at the site. According to a project design document reviewed by Reuters, the site has palaces for the king, Prince Mohammed and his brother Prince Turki, as well as smaller villas for other royal brothers and “family princes.” Landscaped with fountains and flowering trees, the complex will also feature three helipads, a marina and a golf course.Contracts for the palaces originally went to other Saudi construction firms. But according to the source at the project site and two other sources, those companies were unable to handle the scale and speed of the project.Tens of thousands of Binladin workers were diverted from other projects around the country. They worked 24/7 at breakneck pace to deliver, toiling through the sweltering summer months, said three sources. Grass planted outside the palaces did not grow quickly enough for the Aug. 1 deadline, so the workers had to replace it with artificial turf before the royal arrival. The senior government official confirmed that a subsidiary of Saudi Binladin Group was involved in the building work.Prince Mohammed took regular flights around the project to survey its progress, according to four people familiar with the matter. Two of them said he has taken charge of marketing NEOM himself, bringing in prospective investors for official tours and alcohol-free parties. At the end of July, he and the king moved to the unfinished complex for their summer holiday. With no other structures on site, trailing cabinet members and business leaders stayed on yachts or in the nearby town of Sharma.Once again, the kingdom needed the knowhow of Saudi Binladin Group.last_img read more

"As Saudi prince Salman rose the Bin Laden business empire crumbled"