South Africa scores for global integration

first_img1 December 2014South Africa’s economy is more connected to the global economy than its peers in the rest of sub-Saharan Africa, according to the Visa Africa Integration Index.The country scored the highest on the index, improving from 61.1 at the start of 2011 to 66.7 at the end of 2013.The index tracks 11 countries divided into key country clusters in sub-Saharan Africa, revealing strengths and areas of growth potential. The clusters are:West Africa: Ghana and NigeriaEast Africa: Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and TanzaniaSouthern Africa: South Africa, Angola, Mozambique, Zimbabwe and ZambiaThe 11 constituent countries are highly representative of the region, with a combined population of 437 million people, or 55% of the total population.South Africa scored highest amongst the 11 countries for global integration with a score of 42.6 out of 50. Kenya scored highest for regional integration, scoring 27.5 out of 50, narrowly overtaking Ghana. But all 11 countries were a long way off the global median of 50.Visa in South Africa launched the second annual Visa Africa Integration Index on Tuesday, 25 November. It measures the degree of economic integration within key trade corridors of sub-Saharan Africa, namely West Africa, East Africa and Southern Africa.DataThe purpose of the index is to better understand and to help facilitate economic growth from greater cross-border interaction and economic openness.Mandy Lamb, the country manager of Visa South Africa, said: “Since the launch of the Visa Africa Integration Index in 2013 the African economy has extended its best period of economic growth on record by delivering growth of 4.8% in 2013.“Our objective was to construct an index for a number of selected sub-Saharan African countries to measure their global and regional integration. The index is built from country-level macroeconomic data and a wealth of proprietary data.“The final outputs are economic integration scores at the country and regional levels measured on a semi-annual basis for the period 2011 to 2013,” Lamb said.BuoyantLamb noted that it was widely expected that buoyant economic growth would continue for the foreseeable future and it was likely that the African economy would achieve a growth rate approaching 5.5% in 2014, with a collective gross domestic product of over $1.9-trillion – a figure that is expected to exceed $2.6-trillion by 2020.The study was carried out in conjunction with Prof Adrian Saville, visiting professor of economics at the Gordon Institute of Business Science (GIBS) in Johannesburg, and Dr Lyal White, director of the Centre for Dynamic Markets and a senior lecturer at GIBS.Four key metrics to measure integration were used: the flow of goods and services or trade, financial integration and the movement of capital, the flow of information and knowledge, and the movement of people. This model assigned a numeric value to the level of integration, with the global median score being 100.FindingsDespite a modest base, the countries surveyed have undergone positive structural transformation over the past decade. All 11 countries showed improvements in economic integration.In some cases the improvements were modest: Zimbabwe and Uganda recorded gains in integration that amount to 0.5% a year and 1.2% a year, respectively. In other cases the gains were swift and substantial. Rwanda’s index score rose by just less than 20% over the three years. Angola, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa and Zambia all recorded robust single-digit improvements in economic integration.The analysis also considered the depth and breadth of integration, and how integrated each country was globally and regionally. In terms of “depth”, a country is considered to be “deeply integrated” if the economy is particularly open and highly connected to the rest of the world. Integration only becomes “deep and broad” if a highly connected economy is engaged with a wide variety of counter parties across the different strands of its global relationships.Structural improvementsWhile South Africa scored highest for global depth (48.3 against the global median of 50) and global breadth (36.9); Mozambique scored highest for regional depth (27.3); and Kenya had the highest score for regional breadth (40.9).Notably, none of these scores achieved the global median of 50, pointing to the need for further structural improvements.“Findings around openness and increased integration have important implications for the socio-economic advance of African economies based on at least two structural drivers,” said Lamb. “Firstly, African economies are substantially unconnected to the rest of the world. Secondly, African economies largely are unconnected to each other.“Africa stands to gain from a sustained structural benefit brought about by the opening up of African economies to each other and to the world at large.”Source: Visalast_img read more

TRAI Channel Selector app: How to find best DTH plan, calculate how much TV bill you will pay after Feb 1

first_imgIt’s been a while since TRAI drafted and directed the DTH service providers and cable operators to implement the new regulations. The new regulations have been devised to ensure that all stakeholders in the DTH, as well as cable TV ecosystem, get have a fair share of power as well as earnings. The immediate benefit of the new regulations is that viewers get more power in choosing what they watch and what they pay for.Since the deadline for phasing out the existing regulations is till January 31, 2019, TRAI has been trying its best to make sure the new regulations are understood and implemented efficiently by viewers, service providers and broadcasters. The new regulations have already made broadcasters list prices for all their individual channels on a la carte basis. Price for the channel bouquets is also mentioned under TRAI’s direction.On the consumer side, TRAI maintained the new regulations will benefit with overall lower pricing, especially when they opt for the a la carte based packs. However, there was no clarity as to how it would benefit the consumers. TRAI, therefore, came up with a new tool that could estimate an approximate total bill that one would incur after February 1, 2019. The tool is called Channel Selector App and is available for free for anyone to use on the Internet. The tool can help consumers get a rough estimation of the bill if they opt to go for the a la carte option.So, can you estimate the exact TV bill that you might incur after February 1 with the Channel Selector app? Do note that the Channel Selector App provides a rough estimate of the bill based on the highest possible prices for the Network Capacity Fee. Also, your DTH or cable operator may offer certain bouquets or channel packs for slightly lower prices. The base pack may also be offered for prices lower than Rs 130. Therefore, you won’t get the accurate numbers that your DTH or cable operator will provide you from the next month.advertisement However, based on the numbers that TRAI is using for Channel Selector app, it’s possible to get a rough estimation of your TV bill if you opt for the a la carte system. Based on the app, we have come up with possible prices in bills that you might incur as a TV viewer.Base packYou will have to pay Rs 130 as the Network Capacity Fee for the base pack that contains up to 100 channels. Additionally, a sum of 18 per cent GST will apply to the overall pack. Every paid channel added to the base pack will add the price to the total sum. All the 25 Doordarshan channels will also be available as standard in the base pack.For the freeloadersIf you want to watch only Free-To-Air (FTA) channels, then you won’t have to pay any additional price for each channel. You will only need to pay the Network Capacity Fee of Rs 130 and the 18 per cent GST amount, which in this case amounts to a total of Rs 154. You can add up to 100 FTA channels.For the sports fanaticIf you choose all SD sports channels only in the a la carte model, then the maximum amount you will have to pay is Rs 331, including the Network Capacity Fee and the GST.If you opt for all 10 HD sports channels in India, then the maximum amount that you will have to pay is Rs 349, including the Network Capacity Fee and the GST.For those who swear by Hindi daily soaps If you only choose all the 15 SD Hindi General Entertainment Channels (GEC), all you will have to pay is Rs 493, including the Network Capacity Fee and the GST. For 8 HD Hindi channels, you will have to pay Rs 313.If you go for all five English GEC channels, then the amount will sum up to Rs 203, including the Network Capacity Fee and the GST. For the 7 HD channels, the amount will go up to Rs 241.If you go for all English and Hindi SD GEC channels, then the total amount will be Rs 347, including the Network Capacity Fee and the GST. For HD versions of the same, you will have to shell out Rs 401.If you only want music channelsIf you choose all English and Hindi music channels listed on TRAI’s website, then you will incur a total amount of Rs 160, including the Network Capacity Fee and the GST.For the HD versions of the same, you will have to shell out Rs 165, including the Network Capacity Fee and the GST.advertisementWhat if movie channels are all that matter to youFor all 15 Hindi SD movie channels, you will have to pay Rs 240, including the Network Capacity Fee and the GST.For the HD versions, the price goes up to Rs 258, including the Network Capacity Fee and the GST.For all English SD movie channels, the total price comes to Rs 236, including the Network Capacity Fee and the GST.For the HD iterations of the same, you will have to pay Rs 338, including the Network Capacity Fee and the GST.For the Lifestyle freaksFor all three English and Hindi SD lifestyle channels registered in the app, the total price will come to Rs 160. For the HD versions of the same, it will cost Rs 166.News buffs, here’s how much it will cost you For all 24 Hindi SD news channels, you will have to pay Rs 231, including the Network Capacity Fee and the GST.For all 10 English SD news channels, the total price comes to Rs 187, including the Network Capacity Fee and the GST.For the 3 HD iterations of English and Hindi news channels, you will have to pay Rs 174, including the Network Capacity Fee and the GST.Kids packIf you want to purchase all English and Hindi cartoon channels for kids, then you will have to approximately pay a sum of Rs 206.There’re only three HD kids channel on offer, which will cost you Rs 179.Education/Infotainment channelsFor all 15 Hindi and English SD educational channels, you will have to pay Rs 181, including the Network Capacity Fee and the GST.For the HD versions, the price goes up to Rs 220, including the Network Capacity Fee and the GST.For the family man who wants a selected choice of all genresIf you are purchasing a family pack plan including various sports, kids, GEC, music and movies channels via the a la carte option, you might incur a higher bill. For example, an average selection of 30 pay channels and 37 free channels including a decent choice of sports, entertainment, movies, lifestyle, infotainment and news channels amounts to approximately Rs 325.On the other hand, when we went through the broadcaster’s channel bouquets, we ended up getting 57 pay channels and 25 free channels, with a combination of interesting channel mix. The price for all this? Just Rs 295, which is cheaper compared to the choice made by the a la carte option. Therefore, if you are looking to cut costs from your TV bills, the bouquet packs from broadcasters might be the best way to do so.Note:The prices indicated here are based on what TRAI has fed to its Channel Selector app. It is as accurate as TRAI data on DTH plans. Also, it is indicative. The packs we have discussed above are based on some assumptions, such as what channels you will watch. There are hundreds of channels and essentially there are hundreds and thousands of possible combinations. So for example, the TV bill for your sports pack may differ from the one we have given here. Treat the packs discussed here as sort of ballpark estimates.advertisementALSO READ | TRAI new DTH rules to apply from Feb 1: How it will change your TV viewing experienceALSO READ | TRAI ‘s new Channel Selector application will help you calculate TV bills after January 31 ALSO READ | New DTH rules: TRAI says if faulty TV connection not fixed in 72 hours, you don’t have to paylast_img read more

Contractor General Report on Spalding Market Tabled in the House

first_img The Office of the Contractor General (OCG) special investigation regarding the award of contract(s) to construct/repair and to rent shops at the Spalding Market in Clarendon was tabled in the House of Representatives on Tuesday, September 17.Contractor General, Dirk Harrison on April 15, publicly announced that a formal investigation has commenced into the circumstances, surrounding the alleged award of contract(s) to construct/repair and to rent shops at the Spalding Market, owned by the Clarendon Parish Council.The primary aim of the investigation was to ascertain whether there was compliance with provisions of the Contractor General Act and the applicable Government of Jamaica (GoJ) Public Sector Procurement Procedures and the GoJ Public Sector Procurement Regulations (2008), in the award of contract(s) to construct/repair and to rent the shops.The Contractor General, in his report, concluded that the shops were illegally erected.He noted that given the finding that officers of the Clarendon Parish Council were reticent in addressing the issue of the illegally constructed wooden shops, an accountability framework should be created and implemented “to clearly outline the reporting relationships and obligations of officers at the parish councils in order to ensure that there is no recurrence of the lack of action, which has tainted the Clarendon Parish Council.”The report also noted that “given the circumstances, which have surrounded the entire Spalding affair,” the OCG is recommending that a legislative and/or governance framework be established to guide Ministers of Government and Members of Parliament as it concerns their roles, functions, responsibilities and involvement in the decision making processes of public bodies.“The legislative and/or governance framework should detail the appropriate sanctions, which can be adopted should a Minister and/or Member of Parliament overstep his/her authority as it concerns the functions of a public body,” the report said.Mr. Harrison also recommended that the Auditor General undertake a review of the financial operations, and accounting systems and practices of the Clarendon ParishCouncil having regard to the numerous deficiencies, which have been identified herein as  it regards the collection of revenue, loss of revenue and the recovery of monies payable to  the Clarendon Parish Council.The Contractor General also recommended that there be an “absolute separation of the responsibilities of the Members of Parliament in regard to the identification and/or approval of projects which are to be undertaken in their Constituency and the selection and/or approval of contractors to execute the identified works.”“In the event that an absolute separation is not feasible, the CG recommends that the appropriate checks and balances be put in place to ensure that there is no undue political interference,” the report stated. Story Highlights A formal investigation has commenced into the circumstances The OCG is recommending that a legislative and/or governance framework be established The report concluded that the shops were illegally erectedlast_img read more

The Warriors Were Ready For LeBron

For now, the chatter around Christmas Day game between the Cleveland Cavaliers and Golden State Warriors is about its lousy ending, thanks to lousy instant replay rules. The Cavaliers held a lead early, coughed it up in the third quarter, and hung around for what should have been a stirring finish before two no-calls on LeBron James drives derailed the game. Our loss. (Cleveland’s, too.) But underneath the dramatics was a game plan that saw the Warriors’ defense negate the Cavs’ best asset: LeBron’s driving and dishing.The Cavs were 6-for-21 with a 38.1 effective field goal percentage off of passes from James on Monday, according to data from Second Spectrum. On James’s 21 drives, he shot 4-for-6 but generated just one assist against three turnovers. Those numbers are uncharacteristically bad for one of the most effective driving facilitators in the game. Because the Golden State defense could switch so effectively — trading Kevin Durant for Draymond Green or Klay Thompson doesn’t exactly give LeBron the mismatch it does against other defenses — and could recover to shooters so well, the drive-and-kick game got itself into trouble.Sometimes, this led to turnovers by James when he was trapped or by his teammates when they received a pass under tighter coverage than they’re used to (one bad turnover by Kevin Love on the right wing comes to mind). Other times, passes from James were a little farther off-target than usual, requiring a shooter to gather and reset before firing, or they sailed out of bounds entirely. (LeBron is usually so precise that he can focus on whether teammates want seams or no seams when they receive a pass — high, low or midsection.) And even when things went to plan, the open shot at the end of a kick-swing-swing sequence sometimes fell to a non-shooter like Dwyane Wade. Often, the Warriors’ defense discouraged the drive altogether — a large chunk of James’s passes to shooters came above the free-throw line, to a shooter who’d flared on a pick-and-pop or a simple screen, far from the deadly help-defense-obliterating machine that usually powers the Cavalier offense.Here are all 21 shots created directly by James’s passes:James hasn’t always struggled to generate offense against this Warriors team. Even in a one-sided series like last season’s NBA Finals, the Cavs tended to shoot much better when James was passing to them than otherwise. But on Monday, they were miserable on plays LeBron set up and only very slightly less miserable on the ones that he didn’t.Maybe the Cavaliers can make enough gimmes to get back to their game in future matchups — they did miss a lot of open shots, too. And perhaps Patrick McCaw, a strong defender who is getting extra minutes while Stephen Curry is out with an ankle injury, changed things up a bit — McCaw probably won’t play quite the same role down the road. But those late-game no-calls aside, Durant’s defense on LeBron (and backup point guard Shaun Livingston’s on Wade) fundamentally changed the way the Cavs offense usually works.It was just one game, and the personnel should look vastly different when they play again just a few weeks from now with the returns of Curry and Cleveland guard Isaiah Thomas, who was in uniform Monday but glued to the bench. But what happened on Christmas in Oakland didn’t look like a one-off: It looked like a plan.Check out our latest NBA predictions. read more

Bahamas Congratulates India on the Celebration of its National Day

first_img Related Items: Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp#Bahamas, August 17, 2017 – Nassau – The Government of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas has congratulated the Government and people of the Republic of India on the celebration of its National Day.   The Government of The Bahamas looks forward to continuing the friendly and cooperative relationship that has existed between the two countries since the inception of Diplomatic Relations in 1975.The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has sent a formal Diplomatic Note of congratulations to the Government of India to that effect.Release: BISlast_img read more

Murder again in Nassau three shot in armed robbery – one dies

first_imgFacebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp#Bahamas, December 11, 2017 – Nassau – Police are searching for the suspects responsible for a shooting incident that has left one male dead and two others injured on Sunday, 10th December, 2017.   According to reports, shortly before 1:00pm three (3) men were working at a construction site on Shirley Street when they were approached by two men, one armed with a firearm, who demanded cash and shot two of the workers.   The third worker was gun butted before the suspects fled on foot.   One of the victims was pronounced dead on the scene while the other two men were taken to hospital and are listed in serious condition. Investigations are ongoing.Shortly before 9:00am on Sunday, 10th December, 2017 Officers from the Mobile Division were on routine foot patrol on Bimini Avenue off Market Street, when they observed a male acting in a suspicious manner.The officers conducted a search of the male and found a quantity of marijuana. The male was arrested and is expected to be charged later this week#MagneticMediaNews#anothermurderinNassau#threeshotinrobbery Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Related Items:#anothermurderinNassau, #magneticmedianews, #threeshotinrobberylast_img read more