Tag Archives: investation

Pakistan calls for increasing infrastructure investment in poor countries hit by Covid | Instant News

NEW YORK: President of the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), Pakistani Ambassador Munir Akram said he believes the establishment of public-private facilities under the umbrella of the United Nations can provide sufficient financing for infrastructure investment in developing countries affected by the coronavirus to spur the economy . development.

“Such a facility would be a useful complement to efforts being made on other platforms to mobilize investment in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs),” he told members of the Paris-based Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) on Monday.

Developing country investment needs for sustainable infrastructure are estimated at $ 1 trillion annually, the head of ECOSOC told OECD members in his keynote address, indicating that existing platforms have not been able to generate adequate investment.

Underlining that the COVID-19 crisis has crushed aspirations to achieve the SDGs by 2030 in developing countries, especially the poorest among them; The Pakistani envoy said the recession was deep, inequality was increasing and financial inequalities were growing.

Highlighting Prime Minister Imran Khan’s initiative for debt relief in April, Ambassador Munir Akram welcomed the temporary suspension of debt by the Group of 20 (industrialized nations) which brought “breathing room” to developing countries.

In May, he said, the UN Secretary General, together with the prime ministers of Canada and Jamaica, started discussions on financing recovery from the COVID-19 crisis, identifying many options that were being resolved.

At a special session of the UN General Assembly, Akram added, Prime Minister Imran Khan proposed a five-point action plan, which calls for an equitable supply of the COVID-19 vaccine to developing countries and a suspension of debt payments for most countries that are struggling until the pandemic ends.

“The general framework group of 20 (G-20) can provide a basis for swift action for debt relief under restructuring even if this is done on a case-by-case basis,” the Pakistani envoy said. However, he said, private creditors should be persuaded to participate in debt relief restructuring which has not been carried out so far.

In this connection, he proposed the creation of a new $ 500 million Special Drawing Rights (SDR) and redistribution of unused rights to developing countries.

In addition, the head of ECOSOC said there was a need for expansion of soft loans by multilateral development banks, expansion of Official Development Assistance (ODA), targets by all developed countries, and fulfillment of their commitments to mobilize $ 100 billion in unattainable annual climate finance.


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Enegix Energy launches Brazil green hydrogen project | Renewable energy | Instant News

Australian renewable energy company Enegix Energy has launched its Base One green hydrogen project in collaboration with the Ceará State Government in Brazil, marking an investment of US $ 5.4 billion.

Under the terms of the recent MoU signed with state governor Camilo Santana, Enegix will set up the world’s largest green hydrogen plant which will produce more than 600 million kg of green hydrogen per year out of a contracted 3.4 GW combined base-load wind and solar power through a partnership with Enerwind. The project is estimated to take 3-4 years to build.

Base One will be established in the northeastern Brazilian state of Ceará and will provide a strategic location for Enegix’s renewable hydrogen production with direct access to all major international markets via sea freight.

A 500 hectare piece of commercial land has been covered in the Port of Pecém, a world-class deep sea port with a well-established infrastructure and access to the required amount of water – to allow the electrolysis process to separate hydrogen and oxygen elements.

Enegix’s planned next-generation facility will run entirely on zero-emission renewable energy and will harness the huge renewable energy potential already available in Ceará with onshore and offshore solar and wind power to be realized allowing Base One to expand to over 100GW to meet demand. global. Request.

Wesley Cooke, Founder and CEO, said his partnership with the Ceará State Government will transform Ceará into a major hydrogen export location and establish Enegix as a global renewable energy producer, in line with its vision and strategy to replace expensive, high-emission power grids with renewables. , base load, and a cost-effective carbonless network.

“Through this partnership, we plan to create a new model of sustainable energy for the world’s fast-growing population while reducing dependency and cutting end-user costs on high-carbon fuel sources such as diesel,” he said.

Base One has the potential to reduce annual CO2e emissions by 10 million tonnes per year and will be “the largest single carbon emission reduction project in the world,” according to a statement.

In other global developments:

  • Portugal is targeting green hydrogen production by the end of 2022 and already has around 10 billion euros ($ 12 billion) of private investment set up for eight projects.
  • Norway’s Aker Major Renewable and Clean Hydrogen Power Plant partners in low-cost green hydrogen and ammonia production in Chile.
  • The H2 Green Steel industrial initiative, supported by EIT InnoEnergy and Spotify co-founder Daniel Ek, aims to build the world’s first large-scale steel production plant powered by green hydrogen, in northern Sweden.
  • CMB, ITOCHU and Nippon Coke & Engineering Company set up companies that focus on local hydrogen production for consumption on the northern island of Kyushu, Japan.
  • Plug Power and SK Group have announced the completion of a $ 1.6 billion capital investment to partner in accelerating hydrogen as an alternative energy source in Asian markets.
  • Plug Power has also signed an MoU with Acciona to launch a 50-50 JV headquartered in Madrid.
  • Italian utility company Enel has agreed with Saras to develop a project to supply green hydrogen to Italy’s Sarroch refinery site in Sardinia.


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Chinese Company Buy British Private School, Sparking Fears of CCP Influence – Radio Free Asia | Instant News

Chinese companies have bought 17 British private schools in Britain in recent years, fueling fears of the expanding influence of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) in the country as the schools struggle financially in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, British media reported.

“Hundreds of independent schools are falling behind in dire financial straits due to the coronavirus pandemic being targeted by Chinese investors,” Letters on Sundays newspapers reported on weekends.

Some of the companies are run by high-ranking members of the ruling Chinese Communist Party, and are “seeking to expand their influence over the British education system,” the report said.

According to an investigation by the newspaper, nine of the 17 schools under Chinese control are owned by companies controlled by Chinese businessmen who are members of the People’s Political Consultative Conference of China (CPPCC), a body that maintains close links between private sector wealth and the ruling party.

Private schools have been hard hit by the pandemic, with enrollments slumping and fees dropping as students are sent home for distance learning, the report said.

Prior to the pandemic, Bright Scholar – a company owned by the daughter of Chinese property magnate Yang Guoqiang – had invested in several schools, including Bournemouth Collegiate School and St Michael’s School in Llanelli, Carmarthanshire, the newspaper said.

Bedstone College in Shropshire and Ipswich High School are owned by London-based asset managers & the London-based Oxford Group, which is supported by the Chinese conglomerate Wanda Group.

Riddlesworth Hall Preparatory School in Norfolk, attended by Princess Diana, was acquired by the Confucius International Education Group in 2015.

Ray Global Education, which has two private schools based in the UK, said the acquisition was part of a “Global Campus” project that seeks to promote the CCP Belt & Road infrastructure and global influence initiatives in the global education sector.

Company president Hu Jing told Chinese state-run media in 2019 that he conducts business in accordance with “political law, education law and economic law.”

“No matter how international the school is, it is basically a Chinese school, and it has to pay attention to the political environment,” Hu told reporters.

When his company set up a school in Shanghai, the first thing it did was set up a CCP committee and elect a party secretary, he said.

British schools have a weak relationship

Wang Jianhong, spokesman for the US-based Chinese human rights group, said he was surprised by the scale of China’s acquisitions in Britain’s private education sector.

“British private schools are a weak link in the chain, because there is a need for investment, and the CCP is taking advantage of it,” Wang told RFA.

“There is little awareness about the CCP infiltration,” said Wang, who has lived in Britain for more than a decade.

Wang said that any Chinese company that invests in this sector needs support from the CCP.

“The CCP’s investment in British private education has increased … and there is definitely a CCP background to these companies: how can ordinary Chinese companies buy private British schools?” she says.

“The compulsory education provider in Britain is now owned by a company controlled by the CCP, and the concern now is that its ideology will influence what is taught there,” said Wang.

He said the current review of the Confucius Institute in Britain would not be enough to curb Beijing’s influence.

“Even if you close the Confucius Institute, the CCP has other means, including the acquisition of private schools,” said Wang. “I don’t think Western countries haven’t realized the extent of the CCP’s involvement here.”

‘Don’t know how to fight’

UK-based writer Ma Jian said the British government failed to understand the risks in allowing the takeover.

“These British politicians are really idiots,” Ma told RFA. “The Chinese are using their economy to get a political vote, but they don’t know how to fight them.”

He said British educational institutions also have a very large investment portfolio in China.

“Britain has transformed itself into a Chinese trade outpost, not only in terms of business, economy and trade, but also in terms of culture,” said Ma. “[U.K.] universities, research institutes, middle and elementary schools have invested a lot of money in China. ”

He said the acquisition of British private schools was entirely in line with China’s efforts to expand the CCP’s influence around the world under general secretary Xi Jinping.

“It’s all about targeting the next generation, educationally,” said Ma.

An employee of a Shanghai-based education sector investment firm, who gave only the nickname An, said there were also strong economic reasons for Chinese companies to be attracted to the UK’s private education sector.

The Hurun Research Institute reported in 2018 that more than 80 percent of China’s richest families plan to send their children to overseas schools, with nearly a third saying they would choose schools in the UK.

“The British brand is also very attractive to Chinese parents, who think of an aristocratic British accent and lifestyle,” An told RFA.

According to a 2020 report from the Independent Schools Council (ISC), China has sent more students to UK private schools than any other country, a total of 10,864 at the time of the survey.

According to An, the weaker pound, post-Brexit and strong government support also appealed to Chinese investors and parents.

ISC chairman Barnaby Lenon told the Times Educational Supplement in 2019 that people should be “very happy” that Chinese investors are buying British private schools.

“This is definitely the rescue of a small number of these schools. It’s a good thing for the schools because it means they can stay afloat,” said Lenon.

Reported by Jane Tang for RFA Mandarin Service, and by Yitong Wu and Singman for Cantonese Service. Translated and edited by Luisetta Mudie.


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Nuapay expands its Open Banking platform throughout Italy and Germany | Instant News

Open banking pioneer Nuapay, empowered by Sentennials, today announced the expansion of open banking payment capabilities to German and Italian banks.

The Nuapay expansion will allow German and Italian partners to offer an open banking payment solution, which supports seamless 2-account payments for their customers.

The launch connected 308 banks in Italy and 435 banks in Germany to the Nuapay Open Banking platform, connecting 134 million European accounts and reaching 98% and 70% of payers in each country. This adds to Nuapay’s existing open banking connections in the UK and France, which account for more than 90% of payers in these markets. In the coming months, Nuapay’s payment integration will expand to other European markets, including Spain, making it one of the leading open banking payment platforms in Europe.

Germany has long shown a preference for cash over digital alternatives. However, the pandemic saw a shift in consumer preferences indicating that the market is ripe for innovation.

Meanwhile in Italy, even before the pandemic hit, the government was trying to increase the use of digital payments by citizens to tackle cash-related fraud. Before the pandemic, 86% of Italian transactions were conducted using banknotes and coins, according to central bank estimates. However, research shows that the market has seen a staggering 80% increase in mobile payments in 2020 compared to 2019. The government is also encouraging consumers to use digital payments with a Christmas cashback campaign. The cashback initiative launched over Christmas asks users to register their payment method on the IO app – a new government app to provide access to public services and benefits – to receive a 10% automatic refund on every transaction from the state.

Nick Raper, Director of Nuapay, comments: “Allowing access to safe and efficient Open Banking payments in Germany and Italy came at a perfect time as the pandemic put the final nail in the coffin. Access to Nuapay’s Open Banking connection, through our platform, will enable businesses to avoid high card payment fees and provide customers with safer payment options. As Nuapay is the only Open Banking provider with a fully inclusive payment solution, including integrated money transfers, refunds, recurring payments, full installment and reconciliation plans, partners are empowered to provide customers with innovative payment experiences, and expand their service offerings. . ”

Nuapay’s Open Banking Platform also received “Best Use of Open Banking in Merchant Payment Ecosystems” at the recent Merchant Payment Ecosystems Conference (MPE), which is usually held in Berlin annually. The award, announced at a virtual conference on February 23, 2021, recognizes the features and functionality built into the Nuapay Open Banking platform that enables Payment Service Providers (PSP) and Merchants to reap the benefits of open banking payments.

Demonstrating its continued commitment to growing its payments business across Europe, Nuapay has obtained a second EU Payment Institution license from ACPR – the French banking regulator. The license allows Nuapay to continue to offer its payment services in a post-Brexit world to more than 1,000 EU clients.


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Italy GDP +5.3 in 2021, debt may stabilize – S&P – UK | Instant News

(ANSA) – ROME, 22 FEB – S&P said on Monday that Italy’s GDP increased by 5.3% this year and said debt, which is expected to rise to just under 160% of GDP in 2020, could stabilize due to increased growth .

It said the EU’s use of the COVID-19 recovery fund could provide a “strong boost” to public investment, which remains about 30% lower than the major financial crisis a decade ago.

It said the government’s reform agenda would not affect Italy’s credit rating. (ANSA).