Daily Archives: December 18, 2015

ContourGlobal Closes Innovative Financing with OPIC and IFC for Cap des Biches Power Project and Announces 32 MW Extension

– Innovative Financing Structure Sees IFC Swap 18-year $91 million OPIC USD Financing to Euros

– ContourGlobal and Societe Nationale d’Electricite (Senelec) Agree to rapidly add an additional 32 MW to the existing site

– Combined 85 MW, $165 million Cap des Biches Project Will Provide Electric Power to 100,000 Senegalese

NEW YORK and DAKAR, Senegal, Dec. 17, 2015 / PRNewswire — ContourGlobal, an international power generation company,  together with its partners, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (“OPIC”) and International Finance Corporation (“IFC”) a member of the World Bank Group, have reached financial close and completed the first disbursement of a $91 million financing for the 53MW Cap des Biches power plant in Senegal.   The project’s innovative financing model brings together two leading development finance institutions, OPIC and IFC, to finance the project with an 18-year IFC swap to Euros of OPIC’s $91 million US Dollar financing. The first disbursement follows the announcement of the signing of the financing agreements between the parties on November 26, 2015.

Cap des Biches consists of three Wartsila 18V46 combustion engines equipped with a “Flexicycle” system constructed by Wartsila under a turnkey EPC contract and developed and to be operated by ContourGlobal. The Cap des Biches project was announced on the eve of the US-Africa Leaders’ Summit in Washington DC in August 2014.  By early 2015 and with the assistance of Wartsila construction of the project started ahead of the financing with OPIC and IFC in order to satisfy Senegal’s pressing need for power. The project combines the commitment and capability of ContourGlobal and the Senegalese government to transform a run-down brownfield site into a modern, highly efficient power plant that will provide power to 100,000 Senegalese.

Commercial operations will begin in May 2016. The power plant employs approximately 270 people during the construction phase and will provide around 45 jobs once it is fully operational.

ContourGlobal and Senelec have also agreed to add 32 MW additional capacity to the site in a $55 million extension that will increase the generating facility by 60%.  Together with Wartsila, ContourGlobal has committed to place the new extension into operations in rapid time, promising electricity in just 10 months. ContourGlobal will seek financing support from the existing financing parties, OPIC and IFC.

Joseph C. Brandt, President & Chief Executive Officer of ContourGlobal said, “We have worked with OPIC and IFC for a decade to bring basic infrastructure to the world’s neediest countries.  Led by President Obama’s Power Africa initiative and national plans such as President Macky Sall’s “Plan Senegal Emergent,” the past three years have seen an unprecedented mobilization of capability and capital to transform the African power sector. ContourGlobal is proud to be part of this historic effort and to help countries like Senegal replace expensive temporary rental equipment with large base load power generating facilities that can be converted easily to burn natural gas.”

“Today marks an important step for private sector-led development in West Africa. ContourGlobal is a steadfast OPIC partner, and with our support their work at Cap des Biches signifies progress for President Obama’s Power Africa initiative, for building bankable power facility models in the region, and most importantly providing new energy to the people of Senegal,” said Elizabeth Littlefield, OPIC’s President and CEO.

Bertrand de la Borde, IFC Head of Infrastructure for Africa Region said, “IFC is committed to improving access to energy across Africa and the rapid disbursement for the Cap des Biches project is a significant step towards that end for Senegal. IFC continues to devise innovative, customized approaches to enable private sector operators such as Contour Global to play a bigger role in delivering high-quality energy installations to address the demand for electricity on the continent.”

Director General of SENELEC, Mr. Mouhamadou Makhtar Cisse said, “The signing of the agreement between ContourGlobal and Senelec to extend by another 32 MW the existing Cap des Biches project is excellent news for both the Senegalese population and Senelec.  Indeed the power plant’s capacity is increasing to 85 MW as of October 16, 2016 which is during the peak of electricity consumption in the country.  The price offered by ContourGlobal is extremely attractive and is a shot in the arm for Senelec’s finances. Senelec congratulates ContourGlobal and in particular lauds their willingness to start construction before reaching financial close which enabled us to bring electricity to the grid much faster than the long process usually associated with private IPP investment.”

About ContourGlobal
ContourGlobal is an international power generation company with approximately 4,000 MW in operation or under construction in 21 countries on four continents. ContourGlobal’s 1,818 employees manage, own and operate a portfolio of 58 power plants utilizing a wide range of fuel types and technologies including renewable energy production from hydro-electric, wind and solar resources as well as an extensive fleet of conventionally powered thermal power plants. The Company’s active 4,000 MW development pipeline spans Europe, Africa and Latin America.

For more information about ContourGlobal, visit www.contourglobal.com
For more information about OPIC, visit www.opic.gov
For more information about IFC, visit www.ifc.org

The Medicines Patent Pool and AbbVie Sign Licensing Agreement to Increase Access to Crucial HIV Treatments Throughout Africa

MPP, AbbVie and South African Department of Health work together to establish long-term solutions for antiretroviral therapies (ARVs)

The Medicines Patent Pool (MPP) today announced a new licensing agreement with AbbVie, a global biopharmaceutical company, that seeks to address future demands for HIV treatment Lopinavir/Ritonavir (LPV/r) in South Africa and across Africa. The agreement has been reached in particular to help ensure sustainability of long-term supply of LPV/r, the most widely used second-line HIV treatment in South Africa and across Africa.

(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20151218/297153LOGO )

Under the agreement, generic ARV manufacturers, upon obtaining a sublicense from MPP, will now be able to manufacture and sell generic versions of LPV/r throughout Africa, as well as combinations of ritonavir with other ARVs, such as atazanavir and darunavir, as alternative second-line treatments.

“This agreement, which the South African government actively encouraged, will significantly help the Ministry of Health to care for its communities living with HIV,” said South African Minister of Health, Aaron Motsoaledi. “LPV/r is critical for second-line treatment in our country and we need to secure supply of the product, especially as treatment needs increase. We welcome the agreement between MPP and AbbVie which will increase the number of manufacturers that can supply the treatment to our people.”

“This is a significant step forward that will further improve access to second-line antiretroviral treatment in South Africa and other countries,” said UNITAID Executive Director Lelio Marmora. “It is through catalytic partnerships that we are helping to change the reality on the ground for people living with HIV.”

The MPP will work to swiftly grant licences to generic manufacturers with stringent regulatory approval. Those that have already received regulatory approval for these medicines in South Africa will be able to distribute in the country. The South African government will consider applications from other manufacturers that wish to seek approval under its fast track process. The agreement will also allow global manufacturers to supply LPV/ r and other ritonavir-based combinations to the whole African continent.

“Africa accounts for approximately 90% of the total usage of LPV/r in donor-funded developing countries,” said Greg Perry, Executive Director of the Medicines Patent Pool. “While many African countries are currently able to purchase generic versions of these medicines from India, this licence will now enable manufacturers in other countries where there are patents, such as China and South Africa, to manufacture LPV/r and other ritonavir-based treatments for Africa, thus broadening the supplier base for the entire continent.”

The licence is royalty free and, as is the case for all MPP licences, is non-exclusive and published on the MPP website. The agreement represents the second licence established between MPP and AbbVie. The first agreement was for paediatric formulations of LPV/r signed December last year.

Mike Severino, Executive Vice President, Research and Development and Chief Scientific Officer of AbbVie, commenting on the agreement stated that, “As a major provider of HIV medicines in Africa for 15 years, it is of the utmost importance to AbbVie that patients have continuous access to these critical therapies. We believe that this agreement with the MPP will help to address long-term and sustainable access to ARV treatments to help meet the increasing demand for treatment in Africa.”

About the Medicines Patent Pool

The Medicines Patent Pool is a United Nations-back public health organisation working to increase access to HIV, viral hepatitis C and tuberculosis treatments in low- and middle-income countries. Through its innovative business model, the MPP partners with industry, civil society, international organisations, patient groups and other stakeholders to prioritise, forecast and license needed medicines and pool intellectual property to encourage generic manufacture and the development of new formulations. To date, the MPP has signed agreements with seven patent holders for twelve HIV antiretrovirals and for one hepatitis C direct-acting antiviral. Its generic partners have distributed three billion doses of low-cost medicines to 117 countries. The MPP was founded and remains fully funded by UNITAID.

SOURCE Medicines Patent Pool

DON’T JUMP ON #ZUMAMUSTFALL BANDWAGON: METALWORKERS UNION

The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) has come out against the #ZumaMustFall campaign, warning of a repeat of 2007 when former President Thabo Mbeki was recalled.

“The #ZumaMustFall campaign has however struck a chord among middle and working-class people of all races, who are rightly sickened by the scourge of corruption, cronyism, incompetence and the looting of the state, which they see as being personified by the president himself,” Numsa said in a statement.

“But, while sympathising with their anger, we should not jump on the bandwagon and make the same mistake as in 2007 and create a ‘coalition of the wounded’ which does not offer the working class an alternative to Zuma or the ANC.”

The president has faced a backlash recently after announcing last week that he was replacing Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene with ANC MP, David van Rooyen.

There was a public outcry and calls for Zuma to be recalled over the move, which saw the Rand reach record lows.

Four days after the announcement Zuma backtracked, replacing Van Rooyen with Pravin Gordhan as Finance Minister, which saw the Rand recover somewhat.

This did not stop some citizens from marching on Wednesday calling for Zuma to be removed.

Citizens took part in #ZumaMustFall marches held in Johannesburg, Pretoria, Cape Town and George.

Numsa said the campaign sought to replace Zuma, who it called a pro-capitalist president, with another.

The union condemned those who supported the campaign on the basis that Treasury’s independence was threatened by Nene’s removal.

“It has never been ‘independent’ but capitalism’s Trojan Horse in government, through which they exercise their stranglehold on economic policy, and which they feared President Zuma’s sacking of Nene would weaken.

“They want Zuma to fall not because the president, or any of the rest of the Cabinet, have fundamentally different views from big business, or of successive finance ministers, whose policies and actions they have all consistently backed,” Numsa said.

This was why pro-capitalists were supporting Gordhan’s reappointment who they hoped would continue their “control of government neoliberal economic policies”, as happened under his previous term in this office.

Numsa said replacing leaders or tinkering with the system was not the answer.

“We cannot subscribe to the tactical call for Zuma to fall without any strategic consideration of what is the alternative for the rural poor, the unemployed, workers and the broader working class.

“The only real alternative to the current mess was adopted by Numsa’s Special National Congress in 2013, which resolved to build new platforms of working class organisation to build working class power so that the working class acts as a class for itself, based on a programme for the fundamental, socialist transformation of the economy and society,” the union said.

SOURCE: SABC

Strategy Analytics: Global Mobile Service Revenue Returns to Slight Growth in Q3

Mobile operator service revenue returned to growth in Q3 2015 after four quarters of falls, albeit up only 0.1% globally. According to the Strategy Analytics’ Wireless Operator Strategies report “4G and China Drive Global Mobile Revenue Back to Growth”, China provided the overall boost to global numbers, but other regions such as Europe also saw improving trends with uplift from greater 4G LTE adoption.

Photo – http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20151217/296828

Click here for the report: http://bit.ly/1T1fRIA

These findings are based on data from Strategy Analytics’ Wireless Operator Performance Benchmarking database, which tracks the financial and operational performance of 246 active wireless operators, which collectively account for 80% of the world’s cellular subscriptions. Other key findings of the report include:

Central and Latin America recorded the biggest revenue declines in Q3, down 6.9% year on year. Venezuela’s rapidly deteriorating exchange rate contributed to most of this decline, with the rest of the region down just 0.2%;

Middle East & Africa recorded the highest growth in Q3 at 2.7%, boosted in particular by strong data and voice performance in South Africa;

Global mobile data traffic increased 71% year on year in Q3 2015, with non-SMS data accounting for 43% of service revenue.

Quotes:

Phil Kendall, Executive Director, Wireless Operator Strategies, said “4G remains an important catalyst for revenue growth and recovery in the mobile market. Delivering a better network experience on increasingly larger-display devices, operators are seeing good data traffic and revenue growth trends enabled by 4G.”

Susan Welsh de Grimaldo, Director, Wireless Operator Strategies, commented “It is concerning for operators in developing 4G markets that leading markets such as Japan and South Korea are starting to see service revenue fall, reflecting the challenges of pushing 4G ARPU uplift right through into the mass market. Greater stability in the US supports our view that shared data plans are an important tool for value creation in this next phase of the 4G market’s evolution.”

About Strategy Analytics

Strategy Analytics, Inc. provides the competitive edge with advisory services, consulting and actionable market intelligence for emerging technology, mobile and wireless, digital consumer and automotive electronics companies. With offices in North America, Europe and Asia, Strategy Analytics delivers insights for enterprise success. www.StrategyAnalytics.com

European Contact: Phil Kendall, +44 1908 423620, pkendall@strategyanalytics.com

US Contact: Susan Welsh de Grimaldo, +1 617 614 0724, swelshdegrimaldo@strategyanalytics.com

Logo – http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130207/NE56457LOGO-b

SOURCE Strategy Analytics

Associa Hawaii’s Christmas Giving Program Benefits Local Families

Associa Hawaii, one of the largest property management firms in the state, is distributing complete turkey dinners and gift cards to families at Oahu public schools and several non-profit organizations this month as a part of the company’s annual Christmas Giving program. The volunteers will be on-hand at Waipahu High School December 17, at 2 p.m.

“The Christmas Giving program represents our continued commitment to serve our greater community at a time of the year when it is needed most,” said Associa Hawaii President Jon McKenna.

The program was established in 2011 and has become a growing community event for the past seven years. In addition to families at four public schools, others will receive dinners and gift cards at Keiki o Ka `Aina family learning centers, Hale Kipa family support services, and five “clubhouses” that have been established to serve adults with mental disabilities.

Building and managing successful communities for more than 35 years, Associa is the industry’s largest community association management firm with over 10,000 employees operating more than 180 branch offices in the United States, Mexico, Canada, the United Arab Emirates and South Africa. Based in Dallas, Texas, our industry expertise, financial strength, and innovation meet the unique needs of clients across the world with customized services and solutions designed to help communities achieve their vision. To learn more about Associa and its charitable organization, Associa Cares, go to www.associaonline.com or www.associacares.com.

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Billy Rudolph

+1 (214) 272-4107

Source: Associa