DOWNLOAD1. European commercial vehicle registrations down 4.4% in August2. Commission publishes reports on industrial competitiveness3. September 2013: Economic Sentiment rises further in both the euro area and the EU4. EU programmes for research and small firms in 2014-2020 approved5. Experts to explore one of the options for EU ETS structural measures6. Week aheadClick to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)
- Suez Canal Expansion Contracts Awarded
zoom Egypt’s Prime Minister Ibrahim Mahlab and the Chairman of the Suez Canal Authority, Mohab Mohamed Hussein Mameesh, signed a contract with six companies in Cairo on October 18th for the deepening and widening of the Suez Canal, a vital shipping link between Europe and Asia.A consortium consisting of Van Oord, Royal Boskalis Westminster N.V., NMDC (Abu Dhabi) and Jan de Nul (Belgium) has secured a contract worth a total of USD 1.5 billion, with each partner entitled to an equal share of USD 375 million.A contract was signed also with the Consortium Dredging International – Great Lakes Dredge & Dock Company for lot number 6 of the deepening and widening of the Suez Canal.The contract awarded to NMDC-lead consortium includes the construction of the parallel section of the canal with a length of approximately 50 kilometers to allow ships to simultaneously transit in two directions as well as the widening and deepening of a number of existing sections to a depth of 24 meters.The majority of the dredging activities for the canal expansion will be executed with 17 cutter suction dredgers. The project will commence in 2014 and is expected to be completed in 2015.“We are awarded the 35km new parallel channel with a dredge volume of approximately 180 million m3 which will require up to 20 Cutter Suction Dredgers to be mobilised, the first of which is already on the way – the Al Mirfa is currently being mobilised by a heavy lift vessel and should arrive to Suez before the end of the month,” NMDC said in a release.The consortium Dredging International NV (75%) – Great Lakes Dredge & Dock Company, LLC (25%) has been awarded the assignment to deepen and widen the western branch of the Suez Canal at Great Bitter Lake, Deversoir Reach and Kabreet Reach (lot number 6).The scope of works, awarded to the joint venture, include the widening and deepening of the Suez Canal over a length of 25 km and up to a depth of -24m.The contract amounts to 540 million US Dollar (421.3 million EUR).The consortium has committed to execute the works within a very short time frame in accordance with the requirements of president al-Sisi.Six cutter suction dredgers (4 DI CSD’s and 2 GLDDC CSD’s) and two hopper dredgers (DI) including some auxiliary equipment will be mobilized to perform the job. Works will start immediately.The ‘new’ Suez Canal will partially run in parallel to the current waterway and entail widening and deepening of existing parts thereof.In early August 2014, Egypt’s president, Abdul Fatah al-Sisi, announced plans for the New Suez Canal.It is expected that the expanded canal will result in doubling of revenues for Egypt by 2023.World Maritime News Staff
- Italy Opens Council For Relations With Italian Islam
New York – The Italian government has established a council to foster relations with the Muslim minority living in Italy.Italy’s Interior Minister Angelino Alfano announced the establishment of the Council for Relations with Italian Islam on Tuesday to serve as an advisory board to help the lives of Muslim-Italians and their integration into the country’s society, according to Italy’s ANSA news website.“The Council will be tasked with providing opinions and formulating proposals on…the integration of the Islamic population in Italy,” Alfano said. The Muslim council will include professors and experts in the Islamic faith and culture, the same source noted.“Respect and collaboration between religious and cultural identities in Italy must be the premise for a dialogue that will enrich democracy, promoting the reasons of peace, social cohesion, and unity,” the minister added.According to demographic experts, there are over 1.5 million Muslims living in Italy, mostly immigrants and a small number of converts.Italian media stated that the new board will maintain open communication with the Italian government on Islamic issues and the unification of “Italian Islam.”“[The open dialogue] favors a community with all those who – while from different countries, cultures, religions and traditions – intend to contribute to the peaceful development and prosperity of our country, in full compliance with our laws and our Christian and humanistic tradition,” the Interior Minister said during the meeting.The idea of “Italian Islam” has experienced some challenges in the Roman Catholic-majority country.In March 2015, plans to build Europe’s first Islamic University for 5,000 students in the city of Lecce, in the southern region of Puglia Salento, did not succeed.According to Italy’s The Local news website, Giampiero Palladini, the Italian-Muslim convert who planned the construction of the higher-education establishment, was faced with Lecce’s local authorities that feared the “character” of the city would change with a Muslim university.Interestingly, Interior Minister Angelino Alfano, who is also head of Italy’s New Centre Right (NCD) party, sparked controversy following the Paris terrorist attacks of November 13, 2015 when he said the Italian government would “crack down” on illegal mosques.According to the same source, it is not easy for Muslims to obtain government permits to open places of worship. Italy has only four official mosques for more than 1.5 million Muslims.