Turin (Italy): Cristiano Ronaldo made a mockery of Atletico Madrid’s vaunted defense, and then mocked its coach as well. Ronaldo scored a hat trick against the normally resilient Spanish side to send Juventus into the Champions League quarterfinals with a 3-0 win as the Bianconeri fought back from a two-goal first-leg defeat. The former Real Madrid player outjumped Atletico’s defenders to score a header in each half and then converted a late penalty for his first hat trick since joining Juventus in the summer and just when they needed it most. Also Read – Dhoni, Paes spotted playing football together He celebrated at the final whistle by mimicking the obscene gesture Atletico coach Diego Simeone made after the Spanish side’s second goal in the first leg having the final say against a rival he so often defeated as a Real Madrid player. Simeone was fined 20,000 euros ( 22,500) by UEFA for improper conduct and it remains to be seen whether Ronaldo will face a similar punishment. It was Ronaldo’s eighth hat trick in the Champions League, moving him level with Barcelona’s Lionel Messi and demonstrating why Juventus paid Real Madrid 112 million euros (then 131.5 million) for the Portugal star who has dominated the competition in recent years. Also Read – Andy Murray to make Grand Slam return at Australian Open It was the first time Juventus came back from a two-goal defeat in the first leg. “Maybe that’s why Juventus signed me,” Ronaldo said. “To help it do things that it had never done before. This result is a great push for the future, we’re strong and we showed it.” The 34-year-old Ronaldo has won the Champions League five times, including in four of the last five seasons. Without him, Madrid was eliminated by Ajax last week. However, Ronaldo had only scored one goal in the competition for Juventus until Tuesday. “It would have been strange if Ronaldo’s Champions League season ended with only one goal,” Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri said. “Juventus signed him for nights like this and tonight he made the difference.” For Atletico, it was more heartache in the competition in the year the final is being held in its Wanda Metropolitano Stadium and more pain caused by Ronaldo. While at Madrid, Ronaldo helped beat Atletico in two Champions League finals. He has also now scored 25 goals against Atletico in his career. “He’s the best in the world,” Simeone said. “We suffered, as happened to them in the first leg. They’re through and that’s right. They deserved it … Maybe I didn’t manage to transmit to my players what we needed.” Juventus thought it had taken the lead less than three minutes into the game but VAR confirmed that Ronaldo had fouled Atletico goalkeeper Jan Oblak before Giorgio Chiellini fired in the rebound. Italy forward Federico Bernardeschi was handed a start instead of Paulo Dybala for Juventus, and he responded by putting in a cross from the left for Ronaldo to head in at the far post in the 27th minute. Bernardeschi also had several chances to extend Juve’s lead notably with an audacious overhead kick in the 35th minute which flew narrowly over. Ronaldo went close again shortly before halftime when he again outjumped everyone but headed Leonardo Spinazzola’s cross wide of the right post. Ronaldo did get the second goal three minutes after the break. Joao Cancelo put in a cross from the right and although Oblak clawed Ronaldo’s header out from under his crossbar, goal-line technology confirmed the ball had crossed the line. Juventus went all out attack and got the decisive third goal four minutes from time. Bernardeschi was nudged over in the penalty area and Ronaldo converted the resulting spot kick to send the home fans wild. In another fixture, Manchester City humiliated Schalke 7-0 to win the Champions League knockout stage tie 10-2 on aggregate and claim a berth in the quarterfinals. Sergio “Kun” Agüero had a brace for the hosts at Manchester’s Etihad Stadium late on Tuesday. Already leading 3-2 after the first leg in Gelsenkirchen, City dominated from the start of the contest and virtually all of the action was in front of visiting goalkeeper Ralf Fährmann. Schalke coach Dominico Tedesco fielded an attack-oriented side, but they struggled to find any gaps in the City defence and left themselves vulnerable. City threatened in the 13th minute, when Kyle Walker’s deep pass found Raheem Sterling, who advanced toward the goal and left the ball for Agüero, whose strike hit the post. Twenty minutes later, City’s Bernardo Silva went down in the area after being brushed by defender Jeffrey Bruma and referee Clement Turpin pointed to the spot. Though the penalty looked soft, Turpin felt no need to consult VAR and Agüero coolly converted in the 35th minute to give City a two-goal overall lead. The Argentine international needed just three minutes to get his second of the night, taking a pass from Sterling and slipping the ball under Fährmann. With Schalke forced to press forward, City’s Oleksandr Zinchenko got the ball to a wide-open Leroy Sane and the German scored against his former club to make it 3-0 on the night and a daunting 6-2 overall in the 42nd minute. City, despite the more-than-comfortable lead, did not let up in the second half and scored twice in the opening 10 minutes after the re-start. The first, by Sane, was disallowed for an offside. Sterling’s goal in the 56th minute looked set to suffer the same fate until VAR confirmed that all of the attacking players were onside. Even as City slowed the pace, the nightmare continued for Schalke. Bernardo Silva scored from inside the box in the 71st minute, seven minutes before Phil Foden made it 6-0 (9-2) with a great assist from Sane. Gabriel Jesus delivered the final blow with six minutes left. City, the Premier League holders, are headed to the Champions League quarterfinals for the second consecutive year.
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday cancelled life ban on India cricketer S. Sreesanth and asked the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to reconsider his punishment. Sreesanth was arrested by Delhi Police along with Ajit Chandila and Ankeet Chavan on charges of spot-fixing during the 2013 edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL). In a relief for the pace bowler, the apex court set aside the life ban imposed on him as a bench headed by Ashok Bhushan asked the BCCI to consider the quantum of punishment on Sreesanth. The top court though maintained that he is guilty of betting/match-fixing. Delhi Police had arrested Sreesanth from his friend’s house while Chandila and Chavan had been picked up from the team hotel as the three were plying their trade for Rajasthan Royals in the T20 league.
Mumbai: In a scathing attack on the political drama between the BJP and its allies in Goa over the leadership issue, the Shiv Sena on Wednesday dubbed it as a “terrible state of democracy”, saying they did not even wait for late chief minister Manohar Parrikar’s ashes to cool down.The “shameless game of power” started even before Parrikar’s ashes could merge with the land of Gomantak, the Sena said in an editorial in party mouthpiece ‘Saamana’. It claimed that had the BJP waited till Tuesday, its government in Goa would have fallen and one of the two deputy chief ministers would have joined the Congress and got the desired post, it claimed. BJP MLA Pramod Sawant was sworn in as the new Chief Minister of Goa just before 2 am on Tuesday, capping a day of hectic parleys between the saffron party and its allies to put a new government in place in the state. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c detailsAfter multiple postponements of the oath ceremony on Monday, the day Parrikar was cremated with state honours, 11 other ministers, including those from BJP’s allies Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP) and Goa Forward Party (GFP), were also sworn in. “In the end, those who were eyeing their shares like cats ended the game post Monday midnight with the swearing in of Sawant as the chief minister along with his two deputies,” the Uddhav Thackeray-led party said.
Wanaparthy (Telangana): Seeking to woo women voters, Congress president Rahul Gandhi Monday said the Rs 72,000 money proposed to be given to the poor by Congress under the ‘ Nyay’ scheme would be deposited in their bank accounts. “This money would go to the bank account of the woman in a family. Every month, this money will directly go to the bank account of women. Crores of women will get power and India would stand on its own,” he said, addressing an election rally at Wanaparthy under Nagarkurnool Lok Sabha constituency. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’ The scheme would jumpstart the country’s economy as the beneficiaries would start making purchases with the money received by them, Gandhi said. The economy has been paralysed following demonetisation implemented by the NDA government, he alleged. If the UPA came to power, 33 per cent reservation would be given to women in the Lok Sabha, Rajya Sabha and State assemblies, Gandhi said. He also said 33 per cent of Central government jobs would be reserved for women.
To celebrate the pursuit of consistent innovation, excellence and global talent, JW Marriott, Aerocity has organised an international programme named ‘Masters of Marriott’ – under which culinary mavens of Marriott International, as well as renowned chefs from across the world, will host masterclasses, ticketed events, meet and greets, and much more throughout the year.As part of the programme, Julien Royer – French Chef and co-owner of a 2-Michelin starred modern French restaurant was invited to engage with Marriott guests, and serve them the best from his kitchen. Also Read – An income drop can harm brainRoyer in an interview talked about dining scene in Singapore as well as his love for Indian cuisine over lunch – where he served visually delightful and authentic French food from his restaurant located at the iconic National Gallery Singapore. Highlight of the meal was ‘Cauliflower and curry tartlette’ which had a strong yet refreshing taste of Cinnamon. ‘Quinoa fritter with salsa and dehydrated cream’, ‘Celeriac root vegetable mash with mushroom ketchup and truffle’, ‘Potato Gaufrette with aspragus and smoked cream’ were equally enticing options to try. Also Read – Shallu Jindal honoured with Mahatma AwardThe main course had ‘Scottish Salmon’ (Tomato cucumber salsa, wasabi mayo, shiso verde, yuzu sake foam) and ‘Toban Yaki Tofu Steak’ (Sauteed mushroom, asparagus, scallions, Korean BBQ sauce). Though his food is vividly loved by the people, Royer wishes to step out of his comfort zone and try experimenting with Indian cuisine. “I loved the cuisine’s diversity and was amazed by the variety of vegetarian food you get in India. I haven’t tried to cook anything as per Indian taste yet, but would surely love to incorporate one Indian dish in my restaurant’s menu.” But what would that be? Royer says, Tandoori will be his choice. “I love the tandoori flavour, its complexity and the way it last in your palette for a long.” It is interesting to note that Royer was one of the first people to open an entirely vegetarian restaurant in Singapore three years ago. “For me, vegetables are very important and should not be viewed as just an accompaniment but as equals to any protein on a plate.” He loves to challenge himself and experiment with vegetable/ingredients which people usually avoid. Commenting on the dining scenes in Singapore and India, Royer says, “I think Singapore is the cross point of different nationalities, culture, and religion. There are chefs from all across the world including Australia, India, Sri Lanka, Japan, opening their own restaurants. This makes the dining scene extremely interesting and competitive, leaving the restaurant owners with no option but to maintain the quality and offer best to the customers.” “I cannot comment on the Indian dining scene because I haven’t spent enough time…but I would love to explore some good food places soon,” he concludes.
Chandigarh: Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Sunday accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of playing “dirty politics” after the PM claimed that the Congress leader skipped an official event marking the Jallianwala Bagh massacre’s centenary as he was busy in “Congress parivar’s bhakti”.Singh alleged that the central government had deliberately chosen to hold a “parallel event” instead of supporting the initiatives and programmes of the state government. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’The event was organised in Amritsar on Saturday by the Centre and it was attended by Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu. Singh claimed in a statement that he had personally approached the prime minister several times over the last two years to seek support for ensuring that the occasion is commemorated in a befitting manner but the Centre had failed to respond suitably. “Instead, the Modi government decided to hold its own event, quite evidently to score political brownie points in the backdrop of the Lok Sabha elections,” he alleged. Also Read – Farooq demands unconditional release of all detainees in J&K”This was truly shocking considering that the prime minister is the chairman of the Jallianwala Bagh Trust,” Singh said. Congress president Rahul Gandhi and the chief minister had on Saturday morning paid floral tributes at the Jallianwala Bagh Memorial in Amritsar. On Saturday afternoon, M Venkaiah Naidu visited Jallianwala Bagh and paid tributes to those killed in the massacre on April 13, 1919. The ceremony was organised by the Union Ministry of Culture. Punjab Governor V P Singh Badnore and Punjab Cabinet Minister O P Soni were among others present at the function held in the afternoon. At a poll rally on Sunday in J&K’s Kathua, Modi said Singh boycotted the function because he was busy in “Congress parivar’s bhakti (appeasing the Gandhi family)”.
Banda (UP): Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday promised to work “in mission mode” to rid Bundelhand of its water scarcity, while also claiming that the opposition will be reduced to ‘zero battey sannata’ in the Lok Sabha polls.”Opposition leaders are going with long faces after half of the polling is over as they know the outcome,” he said at a public meeting here in Bundelkhand region of Uttar Pradesh. “The opposition will get ‘zero battey sannata’,” he added, playing on the name of a Hindi movie, ‘Nil Battey Sannata’, which means zero divided by zero – a slang for nothing. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’Stating that he understands well the problem of acute water scarcity in the region, which is also responsible for its backwardness, the prime minister said it will be handled “in mission mode”. “I feel the struggle for water faced by my sisters. This challenge also has been accepted by your chowkidar,” said Modi. He promised to start work to provide water to the parched region “in mission mode” within a month after the announcement of the election result, if they return “the Modi government” to the power again. He said he would get women rid of water scarcity just like he freed them from smoke by providing LPG connections and the personal humiliation by providing toilets. Also Read – Farooq demands unconditional release of all detainees in J&KHe also promised to establish a ‘Jal Shakti Mantralaya’ to deal with the country-wide problem of water scarcity by reviving rivers. If voted to power, his next government would make an all out effort to ensure that water reaches people though all available means just like, he said, his government provided electricity to all villages in the last five years. Accusing the previous governments of “doing selfish politics”, the prime minister rued that even the Congress government supported by the SP and BSP kept hundreds of irrigation projects pending. “We have taken up 99 such big projects and most of them are on the verge of completion,” he said, while also referring to his government’s various other work like the Bundelkhand Expressway and the defence corridor projects impacting the region. Jibing at the Opposition, he said all the leaders in the poll fray, despite fielding a small numbwer of candidates are dreaming of becoming prime minister. He said the SP-BSP and the Congress have not told people about any of their schemes for ending terrorism and appear to be afraid of talking about the terrorism. Later in the evening before filing his nomination from Varanasi, Prime Minister Narendra Modi also held a mega roadshow in the temple town as thousands lined the streets to take a glimpse of their star candidate. The PM later tweeted that he was “grateful for the warmth and affection” shown by the people of Kashi. As chants of ‘Modi, Modi’ rent the air, the PM’s cavalcade traversed through Assi Ghat, Bhadaini, Sonarpura, Madanpura, Jangambadi, Godowlia before concluding at the Dashashwamedh Ghat, where he performed the evening aarti. Modi began the roadshow by garlanding the statue of Pandit Madan Mohan Malviya outside the Banaras Hindu University. He was accompanied by BJP chief Amit Shah, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and other top alliance leaders.
Rabat – The police are reportedly investigating the two Swedish security guards who were filmed slamming a Moroccan nine-year-old boy’s head into a stone floor at the main station in Malmö, Sweden.According to The Local, Linda Pleym, a spokesperson for Skåne police, told Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet that “they are suspected of assault and will be questioned on that matter.”The same source added that Anders Lönnebo, the CEO of the security company Svensk Bevakningstjänst, which employed the guards, admitted on Monday that the incident “didn’t look good on camera”. Cecilia Granath, spokeswoman for the train station Jernhusen, told The Local on Monday that her company contacted the security guard to account for the incident.“We have a zero-tolerance policy towards excessive violence,” she said.In the video, published on YouTube, a security guard weighing approximately 90 kilos sat on the boy’s chest and pressed his gloved hand violently over the boy’s mouth and nose.The guard slammed the boy’s head against the stone floor, while the child struggled to recite the Shahadah (declaration of faith).
Rabat – Habanos, the arm of the Cuban state tobacco company, will invest 1 billion dirhams in a cigar and cigarette factory in Morocco.The Economist, in its September 21st edition, reported that Habanos is preparing to implement the first factory for the manufacture of tobacco products in the Casablanca region.According to the same source, the company scheduled to launch in December 2015, intends to invest no less than 1 billion dirhams in this factory. The new plant will produce cigarettes, cigarillos and cigars, most of them will be exported to the African market. Moulay Omar Zehraoui, President of Habanos, quoted by the newspaper as saying that “80 percent of the production will be exported mainly to Sub-Saharan Africa”.“With a total production of over 40 million packs of cigarettes per day, the plant will target primarily Senegal, Ivory Coast, Benin, Mali and Nigeria. The remaining 20 percent of production will be for the local market,” Zehraoui added.The company is expected to create about 600 jobs at its inception.The Economist informed that “cigarettes that will carry the Moroccan label will be sold for between 15 and 35 dirhams” with respect to the Moroccan market prices.Despite the brand-wide increase in cigarette prices since last year, the number of tobacco users in Morocco reached “about 7 million smokers, representing one fifth of the population,” with minors making up half a million of these figures, according to Rachida El Mokrie Al idrissi, Head of the National Coalition for the Fight Against Drugs.
Rabat – Morocco is among countries that are the least affected by terrorism according to the latest Global Terrorism Index (GTI) published last Wednesday by the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP).Morocco ranked 95 out of 163 countries, followed by Honduras, Albania, and Estonia.The ranking sheds light on the progress of safe and stable tourism in Morocco unlike some developed countries like France, which has suffered from a string of deadly terrorist attacks this past year. “France and Tunisia, which witnessed deaths from terrorism, experienced large losses in tourism revenue. Conversely, Italy and Morocco, which had no deaths from terrorism, increased their revenues from tourism,” the Index said. It noted that the revenues from “Morocco’s tourism and travel increased by US$400 million from 2014 to 2015.”The same index shows that Arab countries have been among the most affected by terrorism since the Arab Spring in 2011. Iraq, Syria, and Libya rose in the list ranking 1st, 5th, and 10th, respectively.With respect to the world economy, the Index explains that the global impact of terrorism reached “US$89.6 billion in 2015, decreasing by 15 per cent from its 2014 level.”It also shows that “Iraq is the country suffering the highest economic impact from terrorism, reaching 17 per cent of its GDP in 2015.” In the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) member countries, “deaths from terrorism dramatically increased in 2015, rising by 650 per cent when compared to 2014.”The world’s four worst terrorist groups, ISIL, Boko Haram, the Taliban, and al-Qa’ida were responsible for 74% of all deaths. “ISIL surpassed Boko Haram as the deadliest terrorist group in 2015. It undertook attacks in 252 different cities in 2015 and was responsible for 6,141 deaths in the year.”Edited by Patrick Shaffer
Rabat – Fresh from receiving the esteemed French title Officer of the Order of Arts and Letters in March, bestselling French-Moroccan author Leïla Slimani will host events in Rabat, Casablanca and Tangier to discuss her new book, Dans Le Jardin De L’Ogre [In The Garden Of The Ogre].Slimani’s second book Chanson Douce [Sweet Song] was a bestseller, selling 76,000 copies even before it won France’s highest literary award, the Goncourt Prize, in November 2016.Actress and journalist Fatym Layachi will accompany the author as she reads excerpts of her new novel in Rabat and Casablanca. In Tangier, 1987 Goncourt winner Tahar Ben Jelloun will join Slimani for a discussion on how to write and publish a book. The 36-year old studied at the French Lycée in Rabat, before pursuing a degree in political science and media studies at Sciences Po in Paris.As part of the French Institute’s cultural season, Slimani will be speaking at the National Library in Rabat on July 6, at Casablanca’s French Institute on July 7 and at Tangier’s Hotel El Minzah on July 8.An essay by the former Jeune Afrique author is due to be published by Les Arènes at the end of August.
Rabat – Leading Portuguese airline TAP Portugal is set to launch on a new service linking Lisbon to Fez six flights a week, starting October 30.Departures are scheduled from Monday to Saturday from Lisbon at 2:00 p.m. and from Fez at 4:35 p.m. The company noted that it will switch to daily frequency in the summer of 2018.The Fez flight adds to the airline’s other connections to Casablanca, Tangier, and Marrakech, said TAP Portugal in a statement, saying that the flights will be operated by ATR 72 aircraft with a capacity of 70 seats. In 2016, the number of passengers transported to Morocco by TAP reached 110,000.Between January and June, the three flights linking Lisbon to Casablanca, Marrakech and Tangier together recorded a net increase of 200 percent, said the company.With the new Lisbon-Fez line, TAP Portugal expects a 20 percent increase of its passenger traffic in Morocco.Fes will soon become the 17th destination of TAP, which connects the Iberian country with a total of 11 African countries.As of June 2017, TAP Portugal served 87 destinations in 34 countries across Europe, Africa, North America, and South America.
Rabat – Iran rejected on Saturday allegations made by Lebanon’s Prime Minister Saad Hariri who accused Iran of spreading “fear and destruction” in several countries.On Saturday, Hariri announced his surprising resignation as prime minister during a televised speech from Saudi Arabia. The official said that there might be a possible assassination plot against him, recalling the murder of his father, Rafiq Hariri, former Lebanese prime minister.For its part, Iran rejected Hariri’s claims through Hussein Sheikh al-Islam, an adviser to Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. The official said that Hariri’s decision to resign from his office is “a plot made by the U.S., Saudi Arabia and Israel.” Bahram Qasemi, Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman, said that Hariri’s departure’s goal is to escalate regional tensions. “Hariri’s resignation was aimed at creating tension in Lebanon and the region,” said Qasemi who was quoted by Irna News Agency.Qasemi said that Hariri’s claims against the Islamic republic is a “repetition of false and unfounded anti-iran accusations by the Zionist regime, the Saudis and the Americans.”For the official, Hariri’s sudden resignation and its announcement from another country “is not only a source of pity and wonder,” but also “indicates he is playing in a ground where the ill-wishers of the region have designed,” he stated. The Iranian spokesman added that “the winner of this ground is not the Arab and Muslim countries, but the Zionist regime that have defined its existence in tension among the Muslim countries across the region.” In a televised broadcast from Saudi Arabia, Hariri severely criticized Iran and its Lebanese Shia ally Hezbollah, for “their meddling in Arab affairs.” “We are living in a climate similar to the atmosphere that prevailed before the assassination of martyr Rafik al-Hariri,” the Lebanese resigned president said, adding that “I have sensed what is being plotted covertly to target my life,” he added.
ORLANDO, Fla. — A labour relations board has put the brakes on a decision allowing the Teamsters to represent scores of Lyft drivers who haul passengers around the Walt Disney World property in Florida.A National Labor Relations Board panel ruled against the Orlando-based Teamsters local last Friday.The panel says the Lyft drivers have different responsibilities than do bus drivers who are already represented by the Teamsters local.The Teamsters demanded the right to bargain on behalf of the Lyft drivers after an NLRB regional director last May ruled the union could represent the “Minnie Van” drivers.Disney World guests can get the private rides using the Lyft app on their phones instead of waiting for Disney buses to drive them around the resort.Neither Teamsters nor Disney officials responded to immediate requests for comment.Mike Schneider, The Associated Press
By Zoubida SenoussiRabat – The Embassy of Japan announced its new project, “Protection and Assistance to Urban Refugees in Morocco,” at a reception on Friday in Rabat.With the help of the United Nations High Commission for Refugees and the Moroccan family Planning Association, this new project aims to help refugees in their integration into Moroccan society by providing access to healthcare and to job services. Moroccan society is keen to create new jobs. The Japanese Ambassador to Morocco, Takuji Hanatani, believes that refugees can make a positive contribution to the job market by creating small enterprises that employ Moroccans.“There are two reasons why Japan is supporting this very important project: to build a multicultural society and to strengthen security for refugees,” said Takuji Hanatani to Morocco World News, adding that Japan has “contributed to Morocco’s evolution for over 50 years.”Takuji Hanatani also told MWN that the Japanese government donated US 220,000 to finance the “Protection and Assistance to Urban Refugees in Morocco.”“The human dimension is very important for the sustainable development of Morocco,” he concluded.During this gathering, the United Nations High Commission for Refugees advisor, Jean-Paul Cavalieri has taken to the stage to talk about the needs and the expectations of refugees.“Healthcare is the first thing that refugees need in Morocco.They come to us in aim of a social security,” he said, pointing out that this is the first priority of the new project.Cavalieri expressed his gratitude towards the Japan government “for the unconditional support through this program that will hopefully answer refugees’ expectations and help them to rebuild themselves in our very own Morocco.”The real challenge is to guarantee the right of integration, according to Ftouhi Abdelkader, President of the Moroccan Family Planning Association, who expressed his concerns regarding a “discriminatory society.”“We need to make sure that refugees feel safe in Morocco. To do so, we need to provide psychological coaching, medical caravans, workshops and awareness days,” he said.As he presented the program, Ftouhi emphasized the need to help urban refugees in their socio-economic journey and in their professional training as an important axis for prosperity.Japan’s government continues to support Morocco by funding social and cultural projects that strive to strengthen relations between the two countries.In 2017, the Japanese government donated MAD 2.2 million to three Moroccan associations involved in several fields, including women’s economic empowerment, sustainable agriculture, and education.
SINGAPORE — Asian shares were mostly higher on Friday after a report suggested that the leaders of China and the U.S. could be endorsing a trade deal in weeks.According to Bloomberg, U.S. officials are preparing a final trade deal ahead of a summit between President Donald Trump and Chinese leader Xi Jinping, which could take place as soon as mid-March. It cited unnamed sources close to the matter.Japan’s Nikkei 225 index picked up 1 per cent to 21,602.69 and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng added 0.4 per cent to 28,738.72. The Shanghai Composite index edged 0.4 per cent higher to 2,953.02 and Australia’s S&P ASX/200 gained 0.4 per cent to 6,192.70.Shares rose in Singapore and Indonesia but fell in Malaysia. South Korean and Taiwanese markets were closed for a holiday.Traders hope that a tariffs battle waged by the world’s two largest economies would soon be called off if a deal is reached.Trump and Xi agreed to a 90-day ceasefire in December after raising import taxes on billions of dollars of each other’s goods. The U.S. was set to hit China with a fresh wave of tariffs once the agreement expires on Saturday.While progress on issues like Washington’s unhappiness over Beijing’s technology policy has been slow, Trump said he will postpone the tariffs to give the countries more time to talk. He did not say for how long.Buying in Asia was supported by an announcement by MSCI, a leading provider of indexes and analytics. MSCI said it will quadruple the weight of Chinese A shares in its global indexes by November. It will also add more Chinese stocks to its Emerging Markets Index, giving the country’s foreign inflows a much-needed boost.A private survey also added to Chinese growth hopes. The Caixin manufacturing purchasing manager’s index, which measures growth in the sector, jumped to 49.9 in February, from 48.3 in the previous month. The index is on a 100-point scale, with 50 separating contraction from growth.This comes after China’s official manufacturing PMI fell 0.3 points to 49.2 in February, a three-year low.WALL STREET: Stocks slid Thursday on news that the U.S. economy slowed at the end of last year, although the performance still beat analysts’ expectations. The country’s gross domestic product expanded at a 2.6 per cent annual rate in the October-December period, down from 3.4 per cent in the third quarter. The S&P 500 index lost 0.3 per cent to 2,784.49 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.3 per cent to 25,916.00. The Nasdaq composite shed 0.3 per cent to 7,532.53, while the Russell 2000 index of smaller company stocks also dropped 0.3 per cent to 1,575.55.ENERGY: U.S. crude added 44 cents to $57.66 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It finished 28 cents higher at $57.22 a barrel overnight. Brent crude, used to price international oils, gained 60 cents to $66.91 a barrel. The contract gave up 27 cents to $66.31 in London.CURRENCIES: The dollar strengthened to 111.77 yen from 111.39 yen on Thursday. The euro climbed to $1.1374 from $1.1371.Annabelle Liang, The Associated Press
Rabat – The US Meat Export Federation (USMEF) is inspecting the Moroccan market after the Moroccan government decided to allow US beef imports.According to Feedstuffs, US export companies are already starting to explore the market.The USMEF representative in Africa, Monty Brown, visited Morocco in mid-December to meet with various companies in the Moroccan beef market. “We had meetings in Casablanca and Rabat with seven different companies, and the initial reaction from the majority of the buyers is that they are very interested in U.S. beef,” the representative said.Brown also said that “the outlook for U.S. beef and beef variety meat in Morocco is exciting. They are open to all products, and there’s a willingness to do business there. We saw a strong level of genuine commercial interest.”He added that the US export federation will “be able to do a lot more volume with Choice cuts because of the price differential they will offer. We know that Choice beef offers a superb eating experience, and we expect strong interest once it is introduced to more consumers in Morocco.”Read Also: Trump: Morocco Allowing US Poultry Imports is Trade WinBrown said that more than 6,660 metric tons of US Department of Agriculture (USDA) Prime and Choice beef can be sold in Morocco at zero duty in accordance with the 2019 high-quality beef quota.In December, Representative of the US Trade Representative (USTR) Robert Lighthizer said, “new access to the Moroccan market for beef and beef products is an important step in ensuring that American farmers and ranchers can continue to expand their exports of U.S. agricultural products.” US Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue asserted, “American beef is the best in the world, and once Moroccans get a taste of it, they’ll surely want more.” The USDA announced in December that Moroccan imports of agricultural products from the US exceeded $512 million as of November last year. The Trump administration estimates the North African country will represent an $80 million market for US beef and beef products.
Rabat – Four Moroccans won the first African Kiteboarding Championship with Younes Ouahmid winning first place, Abdou Moutaouakil second, Yassine Boucetta third, and Laarbi Derkaoui fourth, on Sunday, March 10. The competition is an important qualifying event. The top four male and top four female riders from the championship qualify to compete in the Global Kitesport Association (GKA) Freestyle World Cup in October 2019 in Dakhla, southern Morocco. The championship also serves as a qualifier for the summer Olympics in 2020 in Japan, where kitesurfing will be an Olympic discipline for the first time.Dakhla Attitude hosted the African Kiteboarding Championship at its venue 30 kilometers north-east of Dakhla. The International Kiteboarding Association (IKA) and the Dakhla Lagoon Association (ALD) organized the championship, and 19 athletes from several African countries competed.According to the GKA: “This marks the first professional pan-African competition ever staged in kiteboarding, the championships are also the first freestyle kiteboarding competition under the new leadership of the GKA.”The organizers aim to develop the practice kitesurfing in Africa and to ensure the influence of Dakhla on kitesurfing on the international scene. Kitesurfing plays a major factor in Dakhla Attitude becoming more famous in recent years.High wind resistance in Dakhla creates ideal kitesurfing conditions. Kitesurfing combines wakeboarding, windsurfing, surfing, and paragliding.
OTTAWA — A new report says foreign companies nearly doubled their share of the film and television production done in Canada over a 10-year period, and accounted for more than half of the $8.92 billion generated in 2017-18.The Canadian Media Producers Association says foreign location and service companies working in this country accounted for a record $4.77 billion of the industry’s total volume for the 12 months ended March 31, 2018.That’s up 26 per cent or $991 million from the previous 10-year high of $3.78 billion set in 2016-17 and more than triple the $1.45 billion generated by foreign location and service companies in the year ended March 31, 2009.Independent Canadian production volumes fell for the first time in five years in 2017-18 but accounted for 34 per cent of the total. In-house production by broadcasters accounted for 13 per cent of Canadian volume after shrinking to the lowest level in nine years.The annual score card comes as the Canadian media landscape shifts — with mobile devices on wireless networks becoming stronger alternatives for viewing television, film and digital video content in homes and theatres.The report shows the overall volume of screen media produced in Canada has grown nearly 62 per cent over the decade, from $5.12 billion in 2008-09, but the strongest growth has been from foreign location and service companies.Independent Canadian television production volume dropped 10 per cent to $2.73 billion in 2017-18 from $3.04 billion in the previous year, which was a 10-year high. In-house production by Canadian broadcasters, which has been more volatile over the decade, accounted for $1.11 billion in volume last year, down 15.3 per cent from $1.32 billion in 2016-17 and the lowest since 2009-10.The Canadian Press
SAN FRANCISCO — Lyft set the price for its stock at $72 per share late Thursday, setting the stage for the ride-hailing pioneer’s hotly anticipated stock market debut.The price is at the high end of revision Lyft made after high investor demand prompted the company to increase its initial goal of fetching $62 to $68 for each of the nearly 31 million shares sold in the IPO. The price sets Lyft’s market value at $24 billion, which will quickly change Friday after the shares start trading on the Nasdaq exchange.Investors embraced Lyft despite racking up $3 billion in debt since its 2012 inception on the premise that its growing popularity will pay off in the long run.Lyft is trying to catch up to Uber, which is expected to go public later this spring.The Associated Press