UK roundup: AG Barr, Canada Life, Merseyside Pension Fund

first_imgAG Barr, the Scottish soft-drinks manufacturer, has completed a £35m (€40.1m) bulk annuity deal with Canada Life for its pension scheme, covering more than 50% of the scheme’s pensioner liabilities, and focuses on those who have recently retired.The deficit for the AG Barr (2008) Pension and Life Assurance Scheme doubled from £13.7m at the end of July 2015 to £25m a year later, with the scheme’s defined benefit section closed to future accruals from 1 May 2016.The buy-in was primarily funded with Gilts, with the trustees taking advantage of good pricing to optimise their low-risk assets.Lead adviser to the trustees was Hymans Robertson, with Shepherd and Wedderburn providing legal advice. James Mullins, partner and head of risk-transfer solutions at Hymans Robertson, said: “This deal is illustrative of the excellent value the market for pensioner buy-ins represents at the moment.“This is being driven by new entrants to the market such as Canada Life. It’s therefore highly likely we’ll see an increasing number of schemes go down this route, taking them a step closer to fully securing benefits.”In other news, the Merseyside Pension Fund (MPF), the pension scheme for public sector employees in Merseyside, northwest England, has reported an investment return of 1.2% on its £6.8bn portfolio for the year to 31 March, compared with its bespoke benchmark return of -0.4%.This takes average annualised returns to 6.5% for the three years, and 7.1% for the five years, to the same date.The previous year had seen a return of 12.6%, compared with 10.9% for the benchmark.During 2015-16, equities in all geographical regions except North America made negative returns, but other asset classes were all in positive territory, with property by far the best performer, returning around 10% (specific figures are not published).There was little change in asset allocation year on year.The strategic allocations are 30% in overseas equities, 23% in UK equities, 20% in alternatives, 19% in fixed interest and 8% in property.However, councillor Paul Doughty, chair of the fund’s pensions committee, said that, as anticipated in the previous year, volatility in financial markets was picking up, and the fund had been positioned cautiously.With the next triennial valuation to be made as at 31 March, the MPF’s estimated funding level is around 76%, the same as for the previous valuation.last_img read more

Calls for nominations issued for areas offshore Canada

first_imgThe Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board (C-NLOPB) has issued calls for the submission of nominations of areas of interest located in the South Eastern Newfoundland Region and the Jeanne d’Arc Region.Source: C-NLOPBCall for nominations, labeled as NL18-CFN02 for South Eastern Newfoundland and NL18-CFN03 in Jeanne d’Arc, will assist the C-NLOPB in selecting parcels to be included in subsequent 2019 Calls for Bids, which will close in November 2019.Following the call for bids in 2019, any successful bidders would be awarded licenses in early 2020.The C-NLOPB said on Thursday that it was issuing the call for nominations under its scheduled land tenure system.According to the Board, offshore safety and environmental protection are important in all of its decisions. The South Eastern Newfoundland Sector NL01-SEN and the Jeanne d’Arc Region were included in the Eastern Newfoundland Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) concluded by the C-NLOPB, with input from a multi-stakeholder working group in 2014.Also, for any lands entirely or partially beyond Canada’s 200 nautical mile zone, additional terms and conditions may be applied, either through legislation, regulations, amendments to licenses, or otherwise, to any resulting license from a call for bids to meet obligations under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea.To remind, the last call for nominations issued by the C-NLOPB was for areas of interest located in the Eastern Newfoundland region in January.last_img read more

Ponant Takes Delivery of Newest Cruise Ship

first_imgFrench cruise company Ponant has received its new cruise ship, Le Bougainville, bringing its fleet to eight vessels.The ship, which is the third in the Ponant Explorers series, joined the company on April 5, 2019.The unit left Søvik in Norway in the morning hours of April 8 and is currently sailing to Malaga, Spain, from where it would start its maiden cruise voyage on April 15. It will be officially inaugurated on June 4.Le Bougainville was constructed by VARD, the Norwegian subsidiary of Italy’s Fincantieri. The company’s fourth vessel from the batch, Le Dumont-d’Urville, is scheduled to be handed over from the shipyard in June 2019.The remaining three units under construction, namely Le Bellot, Le Jacques Cartier and Le Commandant Charcot, are expected to join the fleet in April and July 2020, and May 2021, respectively.“I wanted the ships in the Ponant Explorers series to embody the very best in expedition cruise. Le Bougainville is the incarnation of that,” Jean Emmanuel Sauvée, CEO and co-founder of PONANT, said.?? #Live from Søvik, in Norway, where our ships the Le Bougainville and the Le Dumont d’Urville are both currently being built!? One is due to take to the sea in a few days, the other is set to leave the shipyard in June!See you very soon onboard pic.twitter.com/V1ICaniu86— PONANT Cruises (@ponant_cruises) April 4, 2019last_img read more

Jewish community in Toronto supports a peaceful Caribbean

first_imgTORONTO, Canada — During a special service for Israel on Tuesday night held at the Beth Avraham Yoseph Synagogue in Toronto, Canada, under the theme “Canada standing with Israel and Israel’s right to exist in the Middle East,” participants also expressed solidarity with the aims and objectives of the organisers of the Peaceful Caribbean Conference, scheduled to be held in Barbados next month, in their initiative to seek solutions to the spread of violence and terrorism in the wider Caribbean.(L-R) Peaceful Caribbean Conference Media Director Melanius Alphonse; Conference Director Rebecca Theodore; and Amir R. Gissin, Israeli Consul General in TorontoConference director Rebecca Theodore participated in the discussions and took the opportunity to draw attention to the ongoing efforts by Iran to establish a foothold in Latin American countries — in North America’s backyard – specifically in Venezuela, which provides a springboard for activity in the region.She pointed out that Iran and its emissaries in the region also engage in extensive social, cultural, and religious activity aimed at exporting the Islamic Revolution. The resulting infrastructure in Latin America could, in time of need, help Iran act against the United States itself or against Western interests in Latin America in various scenarios: if its nuclear installations are attacked by Israel and/or the United States, or if, should Iran’s sense of isolation and encirclement intensify, it seeks to initiate crises with the US, perhaps on the model of the Cuban missile crisis. In the meantime, according to Theodore, Iran is exploiting the relative proximity to the US to illegally penetrate its territory (via Mexico) as well as to prepare a terror and sabotage infrastructure within the US itself.Equally, Iran and Hezbollah will take and most likely are taking advantage of Venezuelan ties and influence in the wider Caribbean to infiltrate the small countries and islands of the region, thereby moving ever closer to the United States and Canada.Members of the Jewish community in Toronto have expressed a firm interest in the aims and objectives of the Peaceful Caribbean Conference 2012 and indicated a willingness to attend and support a presentation at the Jamaican Canadian Centre in Toronto on Saturday, March 17, 2012, at 3:00 pm in support of the conference.By Caribbean News Now contributor Share 52 Views   no discussions Share Sharing is caring!center_img Share Tweet FaithInternationalLifestylePrint Jewish community in Toronto supports a peaceful Caribbean by: – March 9, 2012last_img read more

COVID-19 case sparks discrimination; healthcare workers ostracized

first_img“Please include us in your prayers.Broaden your understanding, and avoid any kind of discrimination. We need itnow more than ever. “The management had already identifiedand quarantined healthcare workers who have come in contact with the saidpatient. Thus, these healthcare workers and frontliners no longer pose anydanger to those who are coming in at TMC Iloilo and the general public as awhole,” it stressed. “We were not praying for this but wehave been preparing for this. We are fortunate that we can rely on experts whohave been through this particular situation. We have been in constant contactwith some of them and we took their experience and used it to prepare ourselvesfor this eventuality,” revealed Villa. The Medical City assured the public its healthcare workers and frontliners pose no health risk to the public. PHOTO BY JAN CADENA LOQUIANO In another statement posted in itsofficial Facebook page yesterday, The Medical City asked for support andunderstanding. ILOILO City – Healthcare workers of TheMedical City in Molo district were being ostracized from their boardinghousesand barangays following the confirmation that Western Visayas’ second positivecase of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) was confined in that hospital. He further appealed to the public: “Youcan sponsor a medical staff for food and lodging. Any help will go a long way.” “To keep our medical staff safe, andupon the call for help from our fellow Ilonggos, I would like to informhealthcare workers that we will be making the Iloilo City College available foryour billeting. Please bring beddings and food in the meantime,” Treñasannounced yesterday. ‘NODANGER TO PUBLIC’ He assured the public that The MedicalCity’s healthcare staff “have been judicious regarding protective protocols inhandling such patients.” ‘WE’REHERE TO CARE, NOT TO SCARE’ The patient started to manifest symptomslike cough and fever on March 6 and was hospitalized on March 13. “Our #HealthcareHeroes need your supportand understanding in these very challenging times. The Medical City Iloilohealthcare workers and frontliners have been doing their duties to take care ofthe sick and protect the community against COVID-19. While we are doing thisfor everyone, can we ask a little favor? He was a 65-year-old retired seaman andresident of Guimbal, Iloilo. “So, don’t be scared because we willalways be here to care.” “I have been receiving information thatour fellow Ilonggos in the medical profession are being discriminated. Busesreject them. Carinderias won’t sellfood to them. Their landlords are evicting them. We should not allow this tohappen,” said an alarmed Mayor Jerry Treñas. The Medical City assured the public itshealthcare workers and frontliners pose no health risk to the public. “Let us be heroes in our own little way.Let us make our fathers and forefathers proud. Kun magbinuligay kita malampasan ini naton tanan.”center_img “We truly understand that you just wantto be safe and healthy. And we’re thinking the same. That is why we areensuring the safety of everyone – each patient we take care of, their families,our colleagues, and even our own families and acquaintances. Here’s the statement in full: Only those healthcare workers who didnot have direct contact with the patient have been allowed to report to duty,according to the Medical City. A person testing positive for COVID-19is not an unexpected development especially in an urban setting such as ours,said Dr. Felix Ray Villa, chief executive officer of The Medical City. Two nurses who were supposed to reportto work were refused passage at a checkpoint in Tigbauan, Iloilo.  “Please keep in mind if our healthcareworkers cannot eat, if they cannot go to work, if they cannot rest and sleep,who will take care of you if you get infected,” Treñas reminded the public. “We are your allies in this battle. Some medical staff of the hospital werereportedly denied entry to their boardinghouses. THEPATIENT According to the World HealthOrganization (WHO), a close contact is someone who has been face to face for atleast 15 minutes or been in the same closed space for at least two hours with someonewho tested positive for COVID-19 when that person was infectious. He was tested on March 13 and the resultcame out on Saturday morning. According to DOH-6 director Dr.Marlyn Convocar, the patient had no travelhistory to countries and cities with coronavirus cases but was exposed torelatives who had recently travelled to Japan and Canada but were asymptomatic. On Saturday, the Department of Health(DOH) Region 6 confirmed that a male patient of The Medical City testedpositive for COVID-19 – the second in the region; the first positive case wasin Bacolod City. Convocar said contact tracing had beenlaunched for persons who had a close interaction with the patient. They wouldeither be considered persons under monitoring (PUMs, f they manifest no signsand symptoms) or patients under investigation (PUIs, if they show signs andsymptoms). “Our quarantine protocols have alreadybeen in place even before this positive result. We have taken each possibleprecaution to make sure this is contained. There is no cause for panic as theproper protocols have been observed and followed,” stressed Villa. If a person has been identified to havehad close contact with someone confirmed to have COVID-19 while infectious, WHOsaid a 14-day self-quarantine is recommended./PNlast_img read more

Man Utd make €65m bid for Inter’s Skriniar

first_imgManchester United have made an offer of €65 million for Inter Milan defender, Milan Skriniar, according to Tuttosport. United have been targeting a number of centre-backs in 2020, and, in particular, the dependable Slovakian is a player who has been continually linked with a move to Old Trafford. However, the Reds’ chances of a move appeared to have been scuppered when Skriniar put pen to paper on a new deal at the San Siro. However, Tuttosport suggests Inter may now consider selling Skriniar as a result of the 25-year-old struggling to fit into Antonio Conte’s back three. Skriniar has had a disappointing spell in the past few months and, as a result, his asking price might be lower than it was six months ago, which is why United have made their new offer. United aren’t alone in their admiration for the player, though, with rivals City also interested as well as Real Madrid and Bayern Munich, which means Inter will have to evaluate any offers they receive this summer. Barcelona are reportedly weighing up moves for Tottenham duo Ryan Sessegnon and Tanguy Ndombele, according to the Daily Star.Advertisement read also:Conte: ‘Inter keep dropping stupid points’ However, they’re reporting that Spurs boss Jose Mourinho has no intention of selling Sessegnon to anyone this summer, even though the England U21 international rarely figures in the north Londoner’s starting lineup. Spurs paid Fulham £25m to bring the attacking left-sided player to north London, but he has endured a frustrating season under Mourinho’s watch, making just six league starts. Barcelona are rumoured to be interested in the 20-year-old, but they also want Ndombele, another Spurs flop. The Frenchman signed for £55m, but he is a frequent target of Mourinho’s criticism and could be up for grabs. Sessegnon, however, appears to not be for sale. FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail分享 Loading…last_img read more

Galbreath storms to Bay Area Modified Tour triumph

first_imgMILTON, Fla. (April 25) – Severe storms threatened as Justin Galbreath made like lightning in winning Saturday’s Bay Area Modified Emerald Coast Tour feature at Southern Raceway. Galbreath was on a rail, leading most of the 25-lapper after starting fourth. The IMCA Xtreme Mo­tor Sports Modified victory was worth $650.Jason Barnhill, Tyler Allen, Brandon Kilpatrick and Scott Sessions completed the top five. Sessions earned $100 for his hard charger efforts from 12th on the original grid. Jessie Barnhill was the $50 hard luck award recipient after losing his second engine in as many races.The third series date of the season is Saturday, May 2 at Northwest Florida Speedway in Black­man.Feature results – 1. Justin Galbreath; 2. Jason Barnhill; 3. Tyler Allen; 4. Brandon Kilpatrick; 5. Scott Sessions; 6. Joey Bartlett; 7. Doug Lea; 8. Trey Cawthon; 9. Dewayne Burchell; 10. Todd Neiheiser; 11. Jimmy McDaniel; 12. Christopher Rutherford; 13. Josh Goodwin; 14. Jessie Barn­hill; 15. Greg Hopkins.last_img read more

Brendan Rodgers embraces Liverpool’s status as derby favourites

first_img His Everton counterpart Roberto Martinez tried to turn up the heat on Rodgers by claiming the amount of money he has spent – this summer’s £80million outlay was four times what the Toffees spent – means there is far more expectation on the visitors to Goodison Park on Sunday despite their recent form not suggesting as much. Rodgers dismissed the mind games but accepts his side do have to shoulder that burden. “We will always take the favourite tag. When you are at Liverpool that is what you want,” he said. “We are happy if people want to put that onto us – we are Liverpool. There is no advantage or disadvantage for us. “If we are the favourites it shows we are a big club and people look to us as the team who want to have that initiative. “We are definitely a team where every game we go into the level of opponents’ games goes up and that is because of the nature of the club we are. “It shows you the level of expectancy here as opposed to another club. We are happy to live with that.” After edging past Aston Villa last weekend and being held to a 1-1 Europa League draw by mediocre Swiss side Sion – a result which was booed by supporters – the scrutiny on Rodgers remains. However, having railed against “people outside the club” with an agenda against him last Saturday the Reds boss remains defiant in his belief that things will come good. That will not deflect attention away from his future should things go awry across Stanley Park on Sunday. Brendan Rodgers insists he is more than happy to accept Liverpool being the favourites heading into the Merseyside derby. Asked if he felt any additional pressure, Rodgers added: “No – and they (the players) don’t feel it either, they are fine. “There is no more or less pressure. The pressure is to perform in the game and that is pressure from within, nowhere else. “I’ve always been clear as the manager, you will always have critics and of course if you are not winning games convincingly sometimes those critics can increase. “I respect and understand that (booing) – they all want to win as much as we want to win and there was probably a bit of frustration. “That is something you have to take on the chin as a coach and as players. “But I also know there is a great level of support out there. It is about perspective; there is a lot of focus on these players who I think are dealing with it very well. “Perspective keeps us calms and hopefully allows us to progress.” Somewhat tongue-in-cheek, he said: “(Everton) are a point ahead of us and have had a good start and we’ve had a disaster! “We are only a couple of points from where we want to be in the top four.” But questions about his future refuse to go away. “I am not looking for any reassurances (from owners Fenway Sports Group),” he said. “It is not something I am seeking or am worried about. I will always work with the players and the situation I am in. “It is still very early on in the season and we are making progress as we go along and we have some outstanding players to come back into the reckoning. “When we get those back we know we have a squad to challenge.” Press Associationlast_img read more

Mauricio Pochettino: Tottenham could do with another striker

first_img Pochettino has previously argued that Son Heung-min, Clinton Njie, Nacer Chadli and even Erik Lamela could step in up front but all those players are more comfortable playing wide as attacking midfielders. Kane’s excellent form and unwavering fitness have made light of Tottenham’s vulnerability but Pochettino admits it is an area the club may look at again. “We have offensive players who can play like Harry. There is Sonny or Chadli or Clinton – they can play like a striker,” Pochettino said. “But maybe it’s true. I recognise they are not a specific striker so maybe we work to try to find such a player we can add in the next transfer window or in the summer to try to help the team. “We are trying to follow players now, but it is very difficult. What is most important is that we do not rock the balance of the team. It is important we find someone who is very specific. “For me, always you want to find a striker that scores a lot of goals and who has good physical condition, good characteristics, can press, work hard and is a nice guy too.” Berahino was Tottenham’s number one target at the end of the summer but they failed to agree a fee with West Brom, who repeatedly made public their frustration regarding Spurs’ bids. Pochettino may get to see Berahino up close on Saturday, when his side face West Brom at the Hawthorns, but the Argentine played down suggestions the forward may raise his game. “You never know because it is impossible to be in that player’s mind,” Pochettino said. “West Brom have a lot of good players. You can’t be more worried about some players because of rumours or what happened in the summer.” Mauricio Pochettino admits Tottenham could do with buying another out-and-out striker in the January transfer window to help Harry Kane. Spurs failed to land a centre forward in the summer, despite making a series of bids for Saido Berahino, leaving Kane to shoulder the burden almost single-handedly so far. Kane has played in all of Tottenham’s 20 fixtures this season and started every game but two, coming off the bench in Europa League matches against Qarabag and Anderlecht. center_img Press Associationlast_img read more

Liverpool defender Martin Skrtel expects to be out of action for six weeks

first_img Although Liverpool’s defensive record is one of the worst in the top half of the Barclays Premier League, the loss of the influential centre-half is a bit of unwelcome news for manager Jurgen Klopp, who is without a win in his last four matches. Skrtel has been an ever-present for the Reds in the league this season, but now he is expected to miss the upcoming fixtures against Leicester, Sunderland, West Ham, Stoke, Exeter, Arsenal, Manchester United, Norwich and Stoke again in the Capital One Cup. If Dejan Lovren does not recover from a knee injury in time for Liverpool’s Boxing Day clash against table-toppers Leicester, Kolo Toure is likely to be drafted in for his first league start of the season alongside Mamadou Sakho. Liverpool have been dealt a big blow with the news that defender Martin Skrtel will be out for six weeks because of a torn hamstring. Skrtel limped off in the first half of Liverpool’s 3-0 defeat at Watford on Sunday and scans have revealed the centre-back will be out until February. Alongside a picture of a lion, the Slovakian 31-year-old wrote on Instagram: “After all rumours going around,i want to say the time i will spend on sideline wont be 3 months…after i suffered tear in my hamstring and tendon i will be out for 6 weeks…i will work hard on my recovery and will do everything to come back as soon as possible and even stronger than before!thanks for your support.” center_img Press Associationlast_img read more