According to an announcement by Minister of Transport, Hesham Arafat, Egypt is planning to build a high-speed train between El Alamein and Ain Sokhna.The project is part of the country’s EGP 55 billion investment in the railway sector, with construction set to begin in the second half of the year, Arafat revealed.
Egypt is also said to be working alongside China on developing a railway to link Cairo to the new capital, while other projects include a monorails in 6th of October City and in the new capital, as well as a railway lines between 6th of October and Aswan. Totaling EGP 120 billion, Egypt’s railway investment plans are reported to include a metro line, which will cost an estimated EGP 90 billion. The new metro line is set to accommodate four million passengers through 27 tunnel stations and 12 surface stations, at a length of 48km.
The Piaggio Group is moving ahead with its plans to expand and strengthen its operations in the world’s fastest-growing markets, with the marketing launch in Egypt of Ape, the brand that revolutionised light commercial mobility in India and Europe and this year celebrates its 70th anniversary.
“The Piaggio Group has been working on boosting growth of exports of light commercial vehicles to emerging economies for many years,” said Piaggio Group Chairman and CEO Roberto Colaninno. “The Ape’s specific features make it the ideal vehicle for effectively supporting growing economies such as that of Egypt, and we are particularly satisfied to enter the world’s second-largest market, flanked by reliable partners with a solid local positioning”.
With about 70,000 light commercial vehicles sold in 2017, Egypt is the world’s second largest export market for three-wheeled vehicles, after Nigeria, and has seen 50% growth since 2010.
The Piaggio Group brings Ape to the Egyptian market in partnership with an international company based in the country, with strong roots in the country’s biggest cities and a plan to open 10 dedicated points of sale by next autumn and make use of a wide-ranging distribution and service network in the country.
The Ape has been launched in Egypt in the Ape Cargo (for freight transport), Ape City and Ape Romanza versions (for passenger transport). The Ape is widely used in Egypt for taxi services linking suburbs with city centres, filling needs not covered by local public transport services.
Over the years, the Ape has also fuelled the development of a small business network based on mobile shops (mainly selling street food, a trend that is also growing fast in Europe as well), or small hauliers using the Ape Cargo. The Piaggio Group sold 176,800 commercial vehicles worldwide in 2017, for net sales of 391.9 million euro. Piaggio is the leader on the Indian market in the cargo segment, with a market share of 48.8%.
Construction work has commenced on the high-speed railway connecting the capital Ankara to the central Anatolian province of Sivas.
The first tracks were laid in the Yerköy district of Yozgat with a ceremony attended by Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozda?, Transport, Maritime Affairs and Communication Minister Ahmet Arslan, Education Minister Ismet Yilmaz and Yozgat Governor Kemal Yurtnaç.
The 405 kilometer railway, which will go through the central Anatolian provinces of Kirikkale and Yozgat, will shorten the travel time between Ankara and Sivas to two hours from the current 12 hours. Arslan said that all works on the railway project will be completed within a year and passengers will be able to travel from Istanbul to Sivas in 5.5 hours.
The project, which also includes construction of a total of 49 tunnels, is estimated to cost 9 billion Turkish Liras (2.26 billion dollar), according to the minister. Turkey’s long-awaited high-speed railway line between Ankara and the financial capital Istanbul was inaugurated on July 25, 2016.
This project, which is worth $4 billion, was completed in phases. Last year in January, Transport Minister Arslan unveiled plans regarding a new high-speed train project in the Central Anatolian province of Eskiiehir and the Mediterranean province of Antalya.
The Al Lajjoun dam in the Kerak governorate, south of Jordan, inaugurated last week, aims to exploit water resources for agricultural and livestock activities in the Kerak area. The flow rate of the dam is 1 million cubic meters; the height of the building is 27.7 meters. The inauguration took place in the presence of the Jordanian Minister of Water and Irrigation Ali Al-Ghezawi and of the Italian Ambassador to Jordan, Giovanni Brauzzi.
The project is part of Italy’s commitment to support Jordan’s efforts to improve the country’s water and sanitation situation and has been financed under the debt swap agreement with a value of 16 million euros signed by the two Governments on 22 May 2011. In March 2016, the Debt Conversion Management Committee approved the financing of two projects: the one for the Al Lajjoun Dam in Karak and the second to co-finance the project of expansion of an existing dam at Al Waleh, in the Madaba Governorate, from 9 to 25 million cubic meters of water.
A partnership agreement has been signed between the Algerian GRA Group and the Italian group ARGO TRACTORS for the construction of a factory for the initial assembly of 800 Landini brand CKD tractors to reach 5,000 units, in a second phase, with a gradual increase of the integration in order to reach a rate of 40%. The factory, which will be located in El-Tarf (Northeast of Algeria), will generate 200 jobs. The Algerian GRA Group holds a ministerial authorization issued in 2016 which has enabled the company to commercialize 800 Landini tractors so far, considering that the national needs for tractors are 12,000 units per year.
Fisia Italimpianti, a company of the Salini Impregilo group and world leader in the design and construction of plants for desalination and for water treatment, has been awarded a contract of 57 million euro for the construction of a water purification plant Istanbul. This is the second project in the country in less than two years, after the one for the Atakoy plant in 2016.
Fisia Italimpianti, in a joint venture with Turkish companies Alkatas and Alke, will build the biological plant in the Yenikapi district for the client ISKI, a municipal company that manages the water and purification system for the city of Istanbul. To be completed within 36 months, the plant will treat 450,000 cubic meters of water per day, equal to the production of waste water of two million inhabitants. The two plants, that of Atakoy and this of Yenikapi, are able to meet the need for treatment of wastewater produced by about 30% of the population of Istanbul. The total production capacity of the company’s drinking water at a global level, adds the note of Salino Impregilo, has grown to reach a production level of 4,200,000 cubic meters a day, of which more than 350,000 cubic meters / day with reverse osmosis technology.
Adelfio Elio Cardinale, president of the “Italian Society of the History of Medicine” was received in Valletta by Marie-Luise Coleiro-Preca, president of the Republic of Malta, at the Palazzo “San Anton in Attard”, the institutional seat of the Presidency. Cardinale, on behalf of the company, invited Coleiro-Preca to visit Sicily, Palermo and Catania, to “be awarded with honours – we read in a note -, that intend to reward a personality that has distinguished itself in his high offices and in life for noble purposes. Among the honors we must mention the International Award ‘Virdimura’, registered in memory of the first female doctor of Italy, who was recognized in the fourteenth century as a pride and supremacy of Sicilian health”. The president accepted and will be in Sicily on 11 and 12 June 2018.
From 12 to 18 of March 2018 the ‘Malta Neuroscience Network’ will organize the ‘Brain Awareness Week’ in Malta. The ‘Week of the Brain’ is a worldwide campaign that spreads new neuroscientific discoveries in a simple and accessible to all way through completely free events. Research in the field of neuroscience in Malta makes use of close collaboration with Italian researchers. In this context, an Italian scientist of international fame, Professor Giacomo Rizzolatti, will be the guest of honor of this event.
The brain week will end with the screening of the film “Split” and with the reading “Anatomy and brain function” by Christian Zammit.
The week is organized in collaboration with Ridt, the Association of University Professors and Italian Researchers in Malta (ADURM), Malta Chmaber of Scientist, Malta Cafè Scientific, Embassy of Italy and IIC, Cine Xjenza and the University of Malta.
According to the data sent by the consulting firm Inforisk (www.inforisk.ma), in 2017 8,088 officially failed Moroccan companies were registered, with an increase of 8.5% compared to the previous year. 90% of the failed companies were declared in liquidation, while the remaining 10% underwent a judicial procedure of controlled administration. The corporate failures recorded last year have caused serious socio-economic consequences, with around 40,000 new unemployed. The overwhelming majority of bankrupt companies (95%) are part of the small business category, while medium-sized companies are only 5%. The economic sectors most affected by the failures registered in 2017 are trade, public works and real estate.
In particular, construction, which had a real boom in the 2000s, saw the “speculative bubble” rapidly deflate, producing numerous bankruptcies. Other factors indicated by analysts as causes of bankruptcies include: late payments, strong fiscal pressure, under-capitalization, mismanagement of businesses, and unfavorable sectoral context. Inforisk also mentions, among the causes of the bankruptcies, the credits that the companies have towards the State, which pays with delay, causing negative consequences on the subcontractors. In the electricity sector, for example, many companies have been forced to close due to the financial problems of their public client “Office National de l’eau et de l’électricité (ONEE)”. To encourage the creation of new companies, the Government of Rabat has included in the Budget Law 2018 the tax exemption for the first 5 years, after which a tax grid is applied, the maximum rate of which is 31%, judged by some analysts too high, compared to the incentive system in force in other countries.
It will be Tree, a company specializing in Innovation and Education services, to lead the European Enisie project – Enabling Network-based Innovation through Services and Institutional Engagement over the next two years. The project is part of the “Interreg VA Italy-Malta” cooperation program, and is funded by the European Regional Development Fund with 1.4 million euro and will involve the territories of Sicily and Malta for the creation and the development of innovative businesses linked to social business and to activate commercial operations between the two islands. Tree, leader of the European project, will coordinate the team of partners made up of Impact Hub Siracusa, the Sicilian hub of social innovation, Malta Enterprise – Life Sciences and the Malta Council for the Voluntary Sector. The program, the note continues, has already entered the operational phase, after last week meeting in Malta, among the four partners that have appointed the steering committee that will lead the activities over the next 24 months. The program will start from the mapping of the reality of innovation, present in Sicily and Malta, to be strengthened thanks to targeted interventions, to create new jobs and an Italian-Maltese commercial bridge able to trigger a virtuous circle to the advantage of the two realities. And of the entire Mediterranean area.
Among the objectives of the project, there is also the creation of an online platform to promote business activities and connections at the Mediterranean and European level. “We are proud to be able to lead this partnership to achieve such ambitious objectives for Sicily and for the whole ecosystem – says Tree CEO, Antonio Perdichizzi – We are sure that, thanks to the peculiarities of all the partners that are part of the project, we will be able to make an important contribution to the development of a territory that has so much to offer, putting it in a position to seize the opportunities and become a best practice at European level “.