Tag Archives: construction

China has criticized the Australian Government for “politicizing trade” over the decision to block Probuild sales to Chinese companies | Instant News


The Chinese government has criticized Australia’s decision to block the Chinese company’s $ 300 million bid for Australian construction company Probuild, accusing the Federal Government of further undermining trust between the two countries.

Earlier this week, Probuild announced that China’s State Construction Engineering Company was state-owned has withdrawn his bid after being told Treasurer Josh Frydenberg would block the sale for reasons of national security.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian harshly criticized the move late Tuesday, accusing the Australian Government of discriminating against Chinese entities.

“This is the latest example of how the Australian government has politicized trade and investment issues, violated market principles and the spirit of the China-Australia free trade agreement, and imposed discriminatory action against Chinese companies,” he said at a press conference in Beijing.

“It is a mistake to politicize normal commercial cooperation and seek political interference in the name of national security.

Probuild is the Australian subsidiary of the South African company Wilson Bayly Holmes-Ovcon.

The Federal Government has not confirmed it has blocked the sale, saying it does not comment on how it screens individual foreign investment cases.

But one industry source told the ABC that the Government feared the takeover would allow foreign intelligence services to gather information about critical infrastructure in Australia.

Probuild is building the headquarters of biotechnology company CSL in Melbourne, which will soon produce a locally produced COVID-19 vaccine for millions of Australians, as well as a new headquarters for the Victoria Police.

China State Construction Engineering Corporation is one of the largest construction companies in the world.

Last year, the United States Government registered it as a Chinese military company because of its ties to the People’s Liberation Army, preventing investors from taking stock.

The Australian Government introduced tough new foreign investment rules that took effect on January 1 this year, with regulators given greater powers to review and research investments that could have national security implications.

The decision is likely to further inflame tensions between Australia and China.

Bilateral relations sink to historic lows in 2020, with Beijing hitting some Australian products with trade sanctions, while Chinese investment in Australia plummeted.

Last August, Frydenberg also blocked China’s proposed $ 600 million acquisition of Lion Dairy and Drinks by China’s Mengniu Dairy, once again drawing criticism from China.

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Villagers protest the construction of the Malir Toll Road | Instant News


KARACHI: Dozens of residents, including women, marched from the Pakistan Hotel to the Goth Clock in Malir on Friday to oppose the construction of the Malir Expressway, arguing that it would destroy the oldest villages, displace large numbers of people and destroy plantations.

Last month Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari launched a toll road project, calling it “the largest civilian infrastructure project ever undertaken by any provincial government in Pakistan under a public-private partnership”. The Malir Expressway will be built as a 38.5 kilometer controllable high-speed expressway to connect Karachi center to the M-9, the highway between Karachi and Hyderabad. However, residents of more than two dozen of the oldest villages fear the toll road construction will displace thousands of families after their villages and land are demolished. “We will not allow demolition in the name of development,” Yousaf Masti Khan of the Awami Workers’ Party told participants of Friday’s protests, which were organized by an action committee set up by the Alliance for Indigenous Rights (IRA).

“In the name of a development project in Malir, the PPP leadership has turned the indigenous people into a minority and displaced thousands of them after demolishing their village.” IRA Secretary General Hanif Dilmurad, who is also the organizer of the action committee, told The News that the provincial government has not consulted with residents or elected representatives in the area about the construction of a mega project that will destroy their homes and livelihoods. “We have seen devastation during the construction of the Lyari Expressway. People who were displaced because of the project are still homeless and their suffering doesn’t stop even though 17 years have passed, ”he complained. He said city planners had also criticized the government’s plan to build the Malir Toll Road.

Dr Noman Ahmed, an urban planner and chair of the NED University’s Department of Architecture & Planning, said a toll road that would only benefit the property-owning elite was being built along the left bank of the Malir River. He also said that the appraisal cost of the entire project was estimated at Rs27 billion, which is more than the total annual budget of Karachi Metropolitan Corporation.

“Karachi has a road network of over 10,000 kilometers, many of them dilapidated,” he wrote in an English daily on December 20. “It’s hard to justify funding a toll road that will serve a few people when repairing and maintaining existing roads can help millions of people. “The protest was also attended by Abdul Khaliq Junejo from Jeay Sindh Mahaz, historian Gul Hasan Kalmati, former Bin Qasim Nazim Khuda City Dino Shah, academic Rukhman Gul Palari and a large number of civil society activists.

A group of PPP lawmakers from Malir – Syed Agha Rafiullah, Jam Abdul Karim Bijar, Muhammad Saleem and Abdul Razak Raja – on Thursday visited the site where a large number of residents had gathered to express their objections to the toll road construction.

‘Malir Toll Road route will be changed to ease reservations’: Information Sindh and local government ministers on Saturday said an order had been issued by the relevant provincial authorities to ease the reservations of Malir District residents for the newly launched Malir Toll Road project.

A statement quoted Syed Nasir Hussain Shah as saying that the part of the toll road project being built would have no objections at all from local residents in the area.

He admitted that the community had expressed their concern over the proposed Malir Toll Road route. He said the reservation had been communicated to Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari by MNA, MPA and district-owned PPP officials.

The minister said that after learning of the matter, the PPP chairman had directed the Chief Minister of Sindh Syed Murad Ali Shah and him to assuage the objections of the local population. The Minister of Regional Government said that CM then held a meeting which was attended by elected PPP management and representatives from Malir Regency.

He said that after the meeting, the Malir Toll Road project director and his team had been dispatched to Malir with orders that the project line should be completed so that there were no objections from residents in the area. He also said that the district will continue to be a stronghold of the PPP in Karachi. He added that work on the Malir Expressway project would be completed at the earliest. The statement was issued by the minister a day after a major rally organized by Malir residents concerned about their forced eviction from their residential areas as a result of the construction of the Malir Toll Road project. Last month, the Head of PPP conducted the groundbreaking of the 38.5 kilometers project which cost around Rs27.58 billion. The six-lane highway project is expected to be completed in 30 months to provide a speedy exit to heavy traffic from downtown Karachi on its way inland via the M-9 highway.

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Fashion Designer Tom Ford Finds Buyer for New Mexico Ranch Designed by Tadao Ando | Instant News


Fashion designer Tom Ford has found a buyer for his sprawling New Mexico ranch.

The property first hit the market in 2016 for $ 75 million, but the price tag was later cut to $ 48 million.

The deal for the property has been closed, according to an Instagram post by New York real estate agent Clayton Orrigo of Compass, who said he represented the buyer alongside local agent Neil Lyon of Sotheby’s International Realty. In New Mexico, property sales are not part of public records.

“It has been an honor to be working on this for the last 4 months, and I am delighted with the new owner who has shown me firsthand what it feels like to dream bigger,” wrote Orrigo. He declined to comment on the buyer’s identity.

Known as Cerro Pelon Ranch, this property is in the Galisteo Basin area near Santa Fe and covers 20,662 hectares. These include Silverado Movie Town, an Old West whistle stop that was built in the 1980s for the film “Silverado” and later used in films such as “All the Pretty Horses” and “Thor.” It also includes horse riding facilities as well as a tennis court, according to the list.

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Singapore Changi reinvents itself for the return of business travel | Instant News


Source: Changi Airport Group Source: Changi Airport Group Singapore’s Changi Airport, consistently voted best in the world and a key part of the city-state’s psyche, is reinventing itself for the Covid era and beyond. normal, it offers glamping for families at Jewel, the nature-themed entertainment complex open to the public, as well as a host of vacation offerings, ranging from canopy park tours that involve topiary walks and bouncing on a net of sky, with seasonal menus. Dino Kart Race Track at Terminal 4 Source: Changi Airport Group With an eye further into the future, slices of the neighboring Singapore Expo site are being turned into a giant construction site as 840 halls of meeting and guests are built in no time – part of Connect @ Changi, a sprawling facility to welcome foreign business visitors as part of a bubble initiative. “It gets more crowded, especially on weekends,” said Jasmine Hoon, a waiter at Paris Baguette, a café in Jewel selling high-end baked goods and wraps. “Sales have increased and vaccines also give people hope.” Nearby, children are starting to feel at home in large white tents erected as part of the airport’s Glampcations in the Clouds initiative. People can spend the night amidst the greenery and wake up to the sound of splashing water from the world’s largest indoor waterfall. Prices start at S $ 320 ($ 240) and sites have been full for weeks. Vacation camping and dining deals may be temporary measures, but they’re all part of efforts to boost activity at Changi, whose importance to the small city-state is hard to underestimate. Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong was on the verge of tears when he pledged to parliament in September that “Changi will thrive again”, citing its opening in 1981 as a moment of immense national pride. Bright tents at Jewel Changi Airport Cloud9 Piazza Source: Changi Airport Because international visitors are such a catalyst for other economic activities across the island – including food and drink, retail and health – it is difficult to calculate to what extent the border closures have hampered Singapore’s economy. According to government figures, aviation alone accounts for around 3% of gross domestic product, with tourism contributing an additional 4%. At the dawn of 2021, Singapore’s success with Covid allows it to open up to business travel adapted to life in the virus era, notably by convincing the World Economic Forum to move its annual meeting to the Davos jet set. While the return to pre-virus traffic is still a long way off, green shoots are a welcome sign for a place synonymous with global trade and travel. “If you think about Singapore’s role as a regional hub and the whole idea of ​​connectivity and logistics facilitation, then Changi is pretty critical,” said Selena Ling, head of research and communication. treasury strategy at Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp. Gone Quiet Covid halted the steady increase in the number of international visitors to Singapore Source: Singapore Tourism Board Changi Airport, Asia’s third busiest hub for international traffic, has, like all aviation hubs , experienced its fair share of pain. Passenger numbers fell to 24,500 in May, just 0.4% from 12 months earlier. They fell back to 111,000 in November, but it’s still down about 98% from 2019 levels. The 13-square-kilometer (five-square-mile) airport on Singapore’s easternmost point operates two of its four terminals and has suspended construction of a fifth for at least two. years. Some outlets in public and transit areas remain closed due to lack of foot traffic. There have also been other setbacks. A much-anticipated air bubble with Hong Kong that would have avoided quarantine has been delayed after a spike in cases in Hong Kong. Singapore Airlines Ltd. has been hit harder than some regional competitors because it has no domestic market to fall back on. The carrier reported its biggest quarterly loss in September, cutting its workforce by around a quarter with the expectation of operating at almost 20% of capacity by the end of the month, after dropping 5.8 % in 2020, the economy could grow by 4% and 6% this year, according to government estimates. However, according to Ravi Menon, managing director of the Monetary Authority of Singapore, critical industries such as aviation may take longer to recover: some $ 100 billion in stimulus has been pledged so far to support consumers and businesses, with more promises this year. budget due later this year. About half is funded with funds from the nation’s generally prohibited reserves – a stark example of the unprecedented nature of the recession, but with vaccines on the way – Singapore administered its first vaccine last week – hopes are rising. Brighter 2021 Singapore government sees rebound from Covid-induced growth slowdown Source: Singapore Ministry of Commerce and Industry In December, Singapore announced a new route for business travel that will allow people to n ‘anywhere to come without quarantine for short stays. They will need to reside at Connnect @ Changi, which, when completed in mid-2021, will have more than 1,300 rooms and around 340 meeting rooms, and will undergo extensive Covid testing, including on arrival and on days three. , five, seven, and 11. “Ideally, you’d like people to be free to move around, do what they want and spend where they want”, but this is a “good alternative” when we are trying to eradicate the virus, Temasek Said Alan Thompson, Senior Managing Director of Holdings Pte. “This is an attempt to start opening up and reinvigorating the airline and hospitality sectors in Singapore.” The state-owned investment company, along with The Ascott Ltd. and Sheares Healthcare Group, is one of the backers of the facility Tokidoki Snow Holiday at Terminal 3 Source: Changi Airport Group And although the virus continues to rage in some parts of Europe and the United States, re-opening negotiations are continuing with other countries. Non-quarantine pleasure trips have already been opened from New Zealand, Brunei, Australia, Vietnam, Taiwan and China, and there are bilateral agreements with Japan, South Korea and Germany that make it easier for business travelers. Transport Minister Ong Ye Kung, in a Facebook post last month, compared the efforts to a “national resilience project.” “We will make sure that Singapore continues to hum even with Covid-19,” he said. “We are all ready to increase again.” (Updates with GDP data in the 13th paragraph.) Before it’s there, it’s on the Bloomberg terminal. LEARN MORE.



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Nord Stream 2: Russia Advances Gas Pipeline to Germany as US Sanctions Loom | Instant News


Photographer: Alex Kraus / Bloomberg

Russia stepped up work on the Nord Stream 2 pipeline before the US tightened sanctions on a controversial project designed to deliver more natural gas to Germany.

The 1,230 kilometer (764 mi) long pipeline construction hit a milestone on Monday with completion of pipe installation in Germany’s exclusive economic zone, said project operators. Among the next steps are continuing work on the Danish part of the Baltic Sea, where most of the remaining sections of the 157 kilometer link will be located.

“There are about 120 kilometers in Danish waters and about 30 kilometers in the German EEZ to be built,” Nord Stream 2 said in an email reply to inquiries on Tuesday. “We are not in a position to provide further construction details. We will inform you about further offshore construction activities in due course. “

The progress at the link is a victory for Russian President Vladimir Putin and champion of the country’s gas exports, Gazprom PJSC. Once completed, the project will allow Russia to expand gas deliveries to Europe and avoid traditional transport corridors through Ukraine. US and Eastern European countries say Nord Stream 2 will make Germany and the EU too dependent on Russian gas.

related to Russia Pushes Gas Relations to Europe Before US Sanctions

Nord Stream 2’s undersea link to Germany.

Construction of the 9.5 billion euro ($ 11.6 billion) project was halted a year ago by US sanctions and resumed only earlier this month when Gazprom found its own ship to lay the pipeline. Nord Stream 2 can use the Fortuna ship to do this works from January 15th, assisted by construction vessels Murman and Baltiyskiy Issledovatel and other supply vessels, the Danish Maritime Authority said last week.

Under the Danish permit, the operator must submit an updated schedule to the state Energy Agency before commencing work. So far, regulators have not received an updated plan, the agency said. The Fortuna ship can install 1 kilometer of pipe per day.

At that level, analysts expect Nord Stream 2 to start operating as soon as the end of 2021 under the optimistic scenario.

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