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UN chief appoints new executive director of International Trade Centre

Coke-Hamilton succeeds Arancha Gonzalez Laya of Spain to whom the secretary-general has expressed appreciation for her dedicated service to the organization.

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New York: United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres announced the appointment of Pamela Coke-Hamilton of Jamaica as executive director of the International Trade Centre (ITC), the joint agency of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and the World Trade Organization (WTO), for trade and international business development.

Coke-Hamilton succeeds Arancha Gonzalez Laya of Spain to whom the secretary-general has expressed appreciation for her dedicated service to the organization, according to a press note issued by the secretary-general’s office on Friday, Xinhua news agency reported.

Currently director of the Division on International Trade and Commodities at UNCTAD, Coke-Hamilton “brings a breadth of experience and expertise” in trade-related capacity-building and sustainable development, having served with the Jamaican government, the Caribbean Forum (CARIFORUM) member states in trade negotiations and multilateral institutions, including the Organization of American States and InterAmerican Development Bank. She previously served as executive director of the Caribbean Export Development Agency, strengthening the capacity of private sector and micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) through investment promotion.

Coke-Hamilton “brings a deep understanding of” the challenges faced by vulnerable economies such as the Small Island Developing States (SIDS) and the Least Developed Countries (LDCs) having designed tailored interventions, said the press note.

She has worked extensively with the private sector across the African Caribbean and Pacific countries as well as with universities and academia to build trade-related institutional strength within member states. As a strong proponent of gender equality and mainstreaming in trade, she established the Women Empowered through Export (WeXport) platform to address the disadvantages women owned firms experience in accessing markets.

Coke-Hamilton will be leading the organization at a pivotal moment given the catastrophic impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has unleashed on the global trading system, particularly on MSMEs in developing countries, with ITC required to play a vital role in assisting in building stronger and more resilient businesses and countries, said the press note.

She holds a juris doctor in law from Georgetown University and an undergraduate degree in international relations from the University of the West Indies. She is fluent in English, advanced in French with a working knowledge of Spanish.

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Tesla plans cheaper $25,000 electric car within 3 years: Elon Musk

Musk also announced that as well as purchasing batteries from Panasonic and LG Chem.

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Tesla CEO Elon Musk

San Francisco, Sep 23 : Elon Musk has said that Tesla plans to produce an electric car with a price tag of $25,000 within the next three years.

The aim, said Musk on Battery Day on Tuesday, is to make Tesla electric cars more affordable for the masses.

“That will basically be on-par or slightly better than a comparable gasoline car. This has always been our dream to make an affordable electric car,” he said during the virtual presentation.

The cheapest Tesla Model 3 that made its debut in February 2019 currently costs $35,000. it offers a 350-km range, a top speed of 210 km per hour and acceleration from 0-100 km per hour in 5.6 seconds.

“Tesla says has only been made possible by shifting sales to an online-only platform and by winding down physical outlets,” reports ZDNet.

Tesla is known for the Model Y, Model S, Model X, and Model 3 product lines.

“For a lot of people, they want to buy a Tesla, but they simply don’t have the money. We could make the car infinitely desirable, but if someone does not have the money, they won’t buy it,” Musk said.

The Tesla CEO also announced the development of a new battery cell and a reduction in cell cost per kilowatt-hour.

The main announcement was Tesla’s new larger cylindrical cells. It was claimed the new batteries will provide five times more energy, six times more power and 16 per cent greater driving range.

“But the technology announced is likely to take years to implement. Tesla’s approach includes integrating the battery so that it forms part of the structure of the vehicle, thereby reducing the effective weight of the battery,” reports the BBC.

Musk also announced that as well as purchasing batteries from Panasonic and LG Chem.

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Bharti Airtel, VIL shares plunge after Jio unleashes postpaid tariff war

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Jio Bharti Voda

Mumbai, Sep 23 : Shares of telecom majors Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea Ltd (VIL) were under pressure on Wednesday after Reliance Jio announced a range of postpaid plans with several benefits, to take on both Airtel and Vodafone Idea in the postpaid segment.

Brokerages retained their bullish stance on Bharti Airtel NSE -7.64 % even after billionaire Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Jio on Tuesday unveiled postpaid plans, bundling up to 500 GB of data and subscription to Netflix, Amazon Prime and Disney + Hotstar.

Shares of Bharti Airtel, however, traded 5.78 per cent lower at Rs 443.80 at around 11:30 am (IST), while Vodafone Idea traded 5.56 per cent down at Rs 9.68 at around the same time. On the other hand, the benchmark BSE Sensex was up 0.62 per cent at 37,966.

JioPostPaid Plus for mobile customers will have a monthly tariff varying from Rs 399 to Rs 1,499 with different benefits, the company said in a statement.

According to ICICIdirect, the move creates a new layer of tariff-based competition in the segment that was so far unchallenged and lucrative.

“Both Airtel, Vodafone Idea (VIL) are exposed to this risk of churn, the pressure on VIL will be more. The theme of prepaid tariff hike in near term also remains questionable. We await incumbent’s move before incorporating any impact in our financials and valuations. We retain ‘Buy’ on Airtel with an unchanged target price of Rs 700 given comfortable leverage and superior customer quality. However, we maintain ‘Sell’ on VIL with an unchanged target price of Rs 6 per share, given the difficult path ahead to assure survival.”

Reliance Jio added that the main objective of the newly-launched JioPostpaid Plus service is to provide superior services across connectivity, entertainment, and experience.

“There can’t be a more opportune time to introduce JioPostpaid Plus. After having earned the trust of close to 400 million satisfied customers in the prepaid smartphone category, we want to extend our customer obsession to the postpaid category,” Akash Ambani, Director, Jio, said in a statement.

Axis Capital sees this as an attempt by Reliance NSE 1.21 % Jio to add high-Arpu customers and shift some of its customers from prepaid to postpaid.

“There will be no impact on incumbents as only 5 per cent and 8 per cent of Bharti Airtel and VIL customers are on postpaid plans. Most postpaid are enterprise customers who are sticky and incumbents also have comparable plans which can match Jio with some tweaking. Incumbents provide additional features like handset protection. We see it as a positive for the sector as it will attract a new generation of OTT aficionado subscribers which will expand the postpaid market,” Axis said while maintaining a positive stance on Airtel and Reliance Industries.

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Airlines on verge of collapse, may shut if situation doesn’t improve: GoAir to SC

SC deferred the hearing of the case for refund of air tickets booked during lockdown period till September 25

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GoAir

New Delhi: A day after aviation regulator Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) informed the Supreme Court (SC) that passengers who booked tickets during lockdown are eligible for refunds, the government recommended that airlines pay 0.5% interest for delayed refunds.

While both Vistara and AirAsia opposed the levy of interest stating that many of their customers prefer credit shell, country’s largest airline IndiGo said it refunded the tickets for the lockdown period in full.

The government also said it is open to considering the interest of any particular segment of passengers if adversely affected.

New Delhi: A day after aviation regulator Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) informed the Supreme Court (SC) that passengers who booked tickets during lockdown are eligible for refunds, the government recommended that airlines pay 0.5% interest for delayed refunds.

While both Vistara and AirAsia opposed the levy of interest stating that many of their customers prefer credit shell, country’s largest airline IndiGo said it refunded the tickets for the lockdown period in full.

The government also said it is open to considering the interest of any particular segment of passengers if adversely affected.

Meanwhile, GoAir pleaded with the apex court that many airlines were on the brink of collapse and might shut down if If the situation doesn’t improve.

SC has deferred the hearing on airlines’ fare refund case for September 25.

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