DP World Bags 30Year Port Concession Deal in Congo

first_imgzoom Dubai-based port developer DP World has won a 30-year concession with an option of a further 20-year extension for the management and development of a greenfield multi-purpose port project at Banana, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).The Port of Banana will be the first deep-sea port in the country along its small coastline of 37 kilometres, which currently only has the riverine port of Matadi.Under the deal, DP World plans to set up a joint venture with 70 pct control with the government of DRC holding a 30 pct share, to manage and invest in the port.The first phase of the greenfield project, with an estimated initial investment of USD 350 million, will include a 600-metre quay and 25-hectare yard extension with a container capacity of 350,000 TEU and 1.5 million tonnes for general cargo, DP World said.The construction is expected to start in 2018 and will take approximately 24 months to complete.The initial investment of USD 350 million will be spread over 24 months and the total project cost of more than USD 1 billion over four phases will be dependent on market demand for the port, industrial and logistics zone infrastructure, DP World said.The development gives the Democratic Republic of the Congo the opportunity to reduce its dependency on the neighbouring countries’ ports.“ Investment in this deep-water port will have a major impact on the country’s trade with significant cost and time savings, attracting more direct calls from larger vessels from Asia and Europe, and ultimately acting as a catalyst for the growth of the country and the region’s economy, “ Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Group Chairman and CEO, DP World, said.As explained, for DP World, the investment in Congo is part of the company’s push to enlarge its footprint in Africa and promises to deliver attractive returns to shareholders over the longer-term.“The Port of Banana will offer the first deep-water port to the Democratic Republic of the Congo that will dramatically improve the cost and time of trade as the majority of the cargo is still handled by neighbouring countries,” Jose Makila Sumanda, Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Transport and Communications, Democratic Republic of the Congo, said.“The project will provide us with a first-class marine facility comparable to other African countries in terms of capacity, draft and ability to handle the latest generation of vessels.”Separately, the company reported that it has signed two framework agreements with the government of Kazakhstan relating to the acquisition, governance and management of Special Economic Zones (SEZ) in Aktau and Khorgos.Following the agreements, DP World now plans to acquire a 51 pct stake in the Khorgos SEZ and 49 pct in the Aktau SEZ in line with the development of the New Silk Route and the Belt and Road Initiative.last_img read more

The NBA Playoffs Sleepers Favorites And Best FirstRound Matchups

4Cavaliers50-3216251444510 At long last, it’s time to put regular-season basketball in the rearview mirror and move on to the NBA’s main event — the playoffs are finally here! And FiveThirtyEight is here, too, to help predict how it’ll all go down. With the help of our CARM-Elo projection model, and the betting odds1According to Sportsbook.ag. as a second opinion, what follows is our survey of both the Eastern and Western Conference postseason landscapes. And in a departure from last season, when the Warriors were near-universal favorites on the eve of the playoffs, there’s actually some uncertainty in the playoff outlook this time around. TeamRecordRatingWin Conf.Win TitleWin Conf.Win Title 7Bucks44-3815001<120 CARM-Elo chancesVegas chances How Elo is forecasting the Western Conference playoffsAs of April 12 8Wizards43-391487<1<121 7Spurs47-3516226310 Vegas odds based on the implied probability of betting line.Source: VegasInsider.com 6Heat44-381491<1<110 5Pacers48-3415473<110 1Raptors59-23168342%17%29%7% 5Jazz48-3416639531 TeamRecordRatingWin Conf.Win TitleWin Conf.Win Title Vegas odds based on the implied probability of betting line.Source: VegasInsider.com 376ers52-3016593011175 CARM-Elo ChancesVegas Chances Statistical favorite: The numbers say this might finally be a breakthrough year for the Toronto Raptors, who are in the playoffs for a fifth straight season but have only one conference finals appearance (and zero NBA Finals berths) to show for it. Everything seemed to come together for Toronto this season, from a mega-efficient offense to a defense that improved to fifth-best in basketball. Add in a career year from DeMar DeRozan and a world-beating second unit, and the result was the top seed in the East — with a 42 percent chance to win the conference, according to CARM-Elo. That number is much higher than the 30 percent chance that CARM-Elo is giving the 76ers, the team our model thinks has the second-best chance of making it to the NBA Finals. And it’s hugely better than the 14 percent we’re giving the three-time defending conference champion Cavaliers. If the regular-season indicators mean anything, Toronto has earned every bit of its favorite status.Betting favorite: Another year, another case of the stats underrating the Cleveland Cavaliers’ chances in the East. Our model struggled to assess the Cavs last season too, and LeBron James’s squad proved the data wrong by tearing through the East with only one loss en route to the NBA Finals. The same scenario is shaping up to happen this season — and Vegas knows it. That’s probably why the Cavs are favored by the markets to win the conference again (albeit as less of a favorite than in the past), despite a regular season that was unimpressive by the standards of a LeBron team. In the battle between skepticism over Cleveland’s inconsistent form and trust that James can will his team to an eighth consecutive NBA Finals,2Including his time with Miami and his second stint in Cleveland. the bettors are still giving LeBron the benefit of the doubt.Dark horse: Although our ratings are higher on the Philadelphia 76ers than the Las Vegas odds are, both predictions think the Sixers are an intriguing pick to contend for the East crown. On the one hand, Philly’s near-total lack of playoff seasoning is a troublesome indicator for the postseason, where experience matters more than we sometimes acknowledge. (A late-season injury to star big man Joel Embiid also complicates matters; Embiid is recovering but probably won’t be ready for Game 1 of Philadelphia’s opening series with the Heat.) But Philadelphia is loaded with talent, from Embiid down low to likely rookie of the year Ben Simmons at the point and No. 1 overall pick Markelle Fultz, who on Wednesday became the youngest player to post a triple-double. The Sixers are also playing at something close to peak form going into the playoffs, having won 16 straight games to close out the regular season. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, that’s the longest winning streak ever for a team entering the playoffs, and it’s one big reason why both our model and the Vegas odds list Philly as the only East team other than Cleveland or Toronto with a double-digit probability of winning the conference title.Best first-round series: The East doesn’t have as many quality first-round duels as the West, but the Celtics and Bucks should be an interesting matchup. Boston lost its star player, Kyrie Irving, with just a week to go before the playoffs. The Celtics have home-court advantage and enough supporting talent to win a postseason series without Irving, but the onus will be on Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown and Terry Rozier to cap off their breakout seasons with great playoff performances. On the Milwaukee side, the Bucks have largely underachieved this season, although they’ve been slightly better after firing Jason Kidd in January. They also have the best individual player in the series by far, according to Basketball-Reference.com’s Value Over Replacement Player, in Giannis Antetokounmpo. The Greek Freak had an MVP-type season this year, and he possesses the skills to potentially take over a series all by himself. It’s been a year since the Bucks put a scare into the Raptors before losing in the first round, and Milwaukee could be poised to actually win this time around. 2Warriors58-241628844435 3Trail Blazers49-3316126332 4Thunder48-3416589532 2Celtics55-2715789231 6Pelicans48-3415954210 1Rockets65-17177257%44%44%35% 8Timberwolves47-3515651<110 How Elo is forecasting the Eastern Conference playoffsAs of April 12 Statistical favorite: After years of taking a backseat as Golden State dominated our pre-playoff predictions, the Houston Rockets are now front-runners to win the West. Specifically, CARM-Elo gives soon-to-be MVP James Harden and friends a 57 percent chance of making their first NBA Finals appearance this summer. Incredulous? Fine, but doubt Houston at your own peril. Remember that this season’s Rockets team shares many of the same characteristics with the Warriors back when Golden State was first making the climb toward transcendence. Teams that produce all-time great seasons like Houston has this season tend to win NBA titles at a tremendously high rate. Nothing in the regular-season numbers suggests that the Rockets should be anything other than solid favorites to take the conference — if not more.Betting favorite: There is a huge disparity between the chance our model gives the Golden State Warriors of winning the championship and what the betting markets say. CARM-Elo gives the defending NBA champs only an 8 percent chance of winning the West, tied to the team’s relatively unexceptional 58-win campaign that ended with Steph Curry injured and Steve Kerr calling his team out over a series of listless final-month losses. And yet, Golden State remains the betting market’s Western Conference co-favorite (alongside the Rockets), with an implied 44 percent chance of going to the NBA Finals for a fourth-straight season. Similar to the situation with the Cavaliers, the Warriors’ strong odds can be attributed to disagreement over how much we should read into a talented team’s regular-season struggles. The oddsmakers are clearly putting a lot more weight on Golden State’s track record than what we’ve seen on the court in 2017-18 — and considering how well we know the Warriors are capable of playing, that’s probably a good call.Dark horse: The West is so crazy that we could highlight a few teams here, but the Utah Jazz stand out in particular. According to CARM-Elo, they rank as the NBA’s third-best team going into the playoffs — trailing only the Rockets and Raptors — even after making our adjustment for playoff experience (of which the Jazz have very little). Utah put itself in a bit of an unfortunate position by losing to Portland on the final day of the regular season, which dropped the Jazz from the No. 3 seed down to No. 5. As a result, Utah lost home-court advantage in the first round, and the formidable Thunder were locked in as its first-round opponent. (It also set them up for a potential second-round collision course with the Rockets.) Even so, our model lists the Jazz as tied with OKC for the second-best chances of winning the West, and they could prove a dangerous opponent for the top seeds if they make it out of the first round.Best first-round series: CARM-Elo says the closest matchup of the first round is the aforementioned clash between the Thunder and Jazz. Oklahoma City is a slim favorite at 52 percent, by virtue of having home-court advantage. But these teams are very evenly matched: Both posted 48-34 records, and only 5 points of CARM-Elo separate their ratings. This one might be a referendum of sorts on the importance of playoff seasoning — the Jazz are the least-experienced team in the postseason field, while the Thunder rank fourth-highest behind only the Cavaliers, Warriors and Spurs. That edge might be enough to push OKC over the top, although whoever wins the prize likely has a date with the Rockets in the next round. Enjoy these teams while they last.Check out our latest NBA predictions.CORRECTION (April 12, 2018, 4:45 p.m.): A previous version of this article misstated the possibility of the Utah Jazz facing the New Orleans Pelicans in the first round if the Jazz had won their final game. Although Utah would have been the No. 3 seed if it had won, it could have played several different teams depending on the results of other games. read more

Murder of TMC worker Prime accused arrested

first_imgKolkata: The prime accused in connection with the murder of a Trinamool Congress worker in Cooch Behar was arrested on Saturday night from an area near the Indo-Bhutan border.Police said the arrested person, Avijit Barman, was behind the murder of Trinamool Congress worker Majid Ansari. It may be recalled that Majid was shot dead from a point black range on July 13. The police had earlier arrested five persons in this connection, but Avijit was at large. He was moving from one place to another. Finally, he had taken shelter in a hideout at the bordering Kumarganj area. He had chosen the bordering area to stay so that he could easily flee if police conducted raid to arrest him. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeActing on a tip off, a team comprising senior police officers went to Kumarganj and conducted a raid at the hideout. They found Avijit present there and arrested him. It may be recalled that Majid was attacked when he was returning from college. He was stopped at Chowpathy area by some people and shot at from a point blank range. Two bullets were fired at him. The first bullet had missed the target. But the second bullet hit him in the stomach. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedLocal people went to the spot hearing the sound of firing and found Majid lying in a pool of blood. Police went to the spot and took Majid to a hospital. He was finally admitted to a nursing home at Siliguri. He succumbed to his injuries after two weeks from the incident. Trinamool Congress leaders had demanded the arrest of the people involved in the incident and also organised a rally protesting against the murder of Majid. Police had initiated a case in this connection under several sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), including murder (302 IPC) and criminal conspiracy (120B IPC). Police initiated a probe and names of six persons including that of Avijit had cropped up, who was at large since the incident. They had arrested five persons and continued their investigation in search of Avijit.last_img read more