Sunday, 17 November 2019

Boeing moved on Saturday to ease tensions with regulators over the return to service of its 737 MAX, saying it was up to the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration and its global counterparts to approve changes to the jet in the wake of two accidents.

The FAA told its staff this week to take whatever time was needed to review the grounded plane after Boeing said it expected the FAA to certify the 737 MAX in mid-December.

"We put some targets out that still line up to December ... type certification," Stan Deal, chief executive of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, told reporters.

"The FAA has said they are not going to put a time frame on it and we are going to track behind them on this," he told a news conference ahead of the Dubai Airshow.

Boeing's mid-December estimate sent the planemaker's stock price soaring on Monday, though it also said it would not win approval for changes to pilot training until January.

U.S. officials privately said this week that Boeing's timetable was aggressive -- if not unrealistic -- and was not cleared in advance by regulators.

On Friday, FAA Administrator Steve Dickson indicated the agency would decide in its own time whether to unground the plane that was involved in two fatal crashes in five months, killing 346 people in Indonesia and Ethiopia.

"This effort is not guided by a calendar or schedule," Dickson wrote in a memo seen by Reuters.

Dickson is due to attend the Dubai Airshow this week.

Speaking on the eve of the show, the head of Boeing divisions spanning jetliners, defence and services expressed sympathy for the relatives of victims of the two crashes that led to the plane's worldwide grounding in March.

Deal said Boeing is in discussions with host airline Emirates over the impact of delays to its much larger 777X, for which the Dubai carrier is by far the largest customer.

Boeing is also talking to Emirates about the future of a tentative order for 40 787 Dreamliners, which is among a number of orders left in the balance since the last Dubai show in 2017.

Emirates has taken a tough stance on new orders ahead of the Nov. 17-21 show but industry sources say it could agree to confirm at least some of the 787s in exchange for a deal with Boeing that would allow it to cancel or defer some delayed 777X.

It is also expected to confirm orders for some Airbus jets.


Published in Travel & Tourism

MultiChoice group has announced the launch of three new channels - CuriosityStream, CBS Justice and Da Vinci.

CuriosityStream and CBS Justice will air for the first time in Africa on DStv channels 185 and 170 respectively, to ensure fans of Factual Entertainment and True Crime stories enjoy their favourite programming on familiar channel destinations, while kids education channel Da Vinci offers informative and fun learning.

This news follows the recent announcement that the company has reached an agreement with A+E to extend the carriage contract for History and Lifetime which continue to air on DStv alongside the new channels.

In October, the company hinted at plans to launch channels aimed at delivering new titles and genres that viewers will enjoy, including among others blue chip documentaries, history and entertaining factual shows.

'We're thrilled to finally announce the launch of these channels that will expand the line-up of new programming for our DStv customers to enjoy,' says John Ugbe, CEO MultiChoice Nigeria. 'CuriosityStream will give our viewers informative entertainment that the family can enjoy together and it's with great pride that we are able to launch CBS Justice, a new true crime channel which is part of the CBS AMC Networks EMEA portfolio of channels. We're also delighted to expand our kids offering with Da Vinci just ahead of the holiday season.'

CuriosityStream is the award-winning, global media company that delivers the world of factual entertainment in one mind-expanding place. Launched by John Hendricks, the visionary founder of Discovery Channel, CuriosityStream lets viewers explore their passions and discover new ones, or just indulge their inner geek with thousands of films and series covering space, art, volcanoes, history, travel, cars, architecture, dinosaurs and so much more.

MultiChoice is debuting CuriosityStream in sub-Saharan Africa, bringing the channel's library of landmark originals and exclusives directly to DStv viewers who are looking for the kind of engaging factual shows and original and exclusive films and series not available anywhere else, as well as shows from some of the best filmmakers around the world including Deep Time History, the History of Food, Age of Big Cats and Breakthrough and more.

'CuriosityStream is thrilled to premiere on DStv, collaborating with MultiChoice as our inaugural bundled distribution partner in Africa,' said Clint Stinchcomb, President and CEO of CuriosityStream. 'MultiChoice is a global leader in finding innovative ways to deliver programming to its viewers whenever and wherever they want it. Those viewers are hungry for high-quality, engaging and entertaining factual shows and CuriosityStream is proud to offer our channel to that important media market.'

Curiosity is innate to all humankind. We all want to know 'why?' CuriosityStream will become DStv customers' definitive source for shows covering the full breadth and depth of the factual genre - from history and nature to science and technology to society and lifestyle. Launching on DStv channel 185, CuriosityStream is the culmination of Hendricks' four-decade quest to create the definitive experience for satisfying curiosity and supercharging the imagination.

Looking at some of the world's most compelling true crime cases, CBS Justice, which is a joint venture between AMC Networks International - UK and CBS Studios International, will launch in Africa on DStv channel 170, and will feature a curated selection of original and acquired programming.

The launch line up of CBS Justice will include original productions The Real Prime Suspect, Donal MacIntyre's Murder Files, Secrets of a Psychopath, Evidence of Evil; and acquisitions Cold Justice, Fame Kills and Stalker!. All the cases brought in front of DStv viewers will be presented and investigated by leading experts such as Jackie Malton (The Real Prime Suspect), the real-life inspiration behind Helen Mirren's character in the award-winning UK drama Prime Suspect, and undercover investigative journalist and professor of criminology, Donal MacIntyre (Donal MacIntyre's Murder Files).

Published in Telecoms
Sunday, 17 November 2019 07:30

Afcon : Rohr ranks Kalu's goal best

German coach Gernot Rohr has picked Samuel Kalu's winner in the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifier against Benin Republic at the Godswill Akpabio Stadium in Uyo 0n Wednesday as one of the best goals under his spell as Super Eagles' manager.

The win coincided with Rohr's 40th match in charge of the Eagles since his first match in the 1-0 home win against Tanzania in an international friendly on September 2, 2016.

Though Kalu's goal was 59th goal scored by Nigeria in both friendly and competitive matches since the former Bordeaux coach took over the reins of the Super Eagles, the 66-year-old was excited like a kid given a chocolate bar as he purred over the magical goal scored by the Bordeaux striker against Benin.

With the game tied at 1-1, the 22-year-old Kalu swanned through the Beninese defence to score what was his second goal for the Super Eagles after being among the goals in that 4-0 lashing of Libya in the 2019 AFCON qualifying match played in Uyo over a year ago on October 10, 2018.

'The goal from Kalu (against Benin) was wonderful with an extra ordinary dribbling and wonderful shot,' admitted Rohr who has won 20 of his 40 matches with the Super Eagles.' Of course, I have seen other great goals from the Super Eagles but Kalu's goal too is a beautiful as some of the best goals I've seen.'

Under Rohr, the Super Eagles have impressed on the road on the continent without losing any of its six previous World Cup and AFCON qualifying matches by claiming stunning wins against Zambia (2-1); Seychelles (3-0) and Libya (3-2) while they recorded an identical 1-1 draw in the other three matches against Cameroon, Algeria and South Africa.

'Our expectations for the Match Day 2 game against Lesotho on Sunday in Maseru is to recover very well after the tough win against Benin in Uyo,' Rohr further said.

'We had two players injured. Samuel Chukwueze had a knock on his knee and Ola Aina has a calf problem but we see how it goes before we travel.

'I'm very okay with the performance of the team against Benin and I'm very impressed with both Kalu and Ola who were not in the team that played 1-1 with Brazil in the friendly in October.

'The good thing about the Super Eagles is good spirit and solidarity among the players because irrespective of the starting 11, we still have the same ideal and commitment.

'This is encouraging for the future and we would go to Maseru with the same commitment,' he noted.

Published in Travel & Tourism

U.S. and Chinese negotiators are nearing a trade deal, but President Trump isn't ready to sign off, White House economic adviser Lawrence Kudlow said.

The two sides are "getting close" to an agreement, Mr. Kudlow said Thursday during a question-and-answer event at the Council on Foreign Relations.

Negotiators for the U.S. and China have been working to come up with a written "phase one" trade deal in which Beijing would commit to buying American farm products and the U.S. would agree to roll back tariffs it has imposed on Chinese imports.

Both countries were initially working toward a deal that Mr. Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping could sign at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Chile, but the summit was canceled because of rioting in Chile. The cancellation, combined with difficulties at the bargaining table, has disrupted the time frame.

Mr. Trump has said that China has agreed to buy up to $50 billion in U.S. farm goods annually, but The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday that China was balking at making a specific dollar commitment.

The expected rollback of tariffs has emerged as a major stumbling block, with China pushing the U.S. to remove all levies while the U.S. has pushed for a limited or phased rollback as leverage to ensure China lives up to its promises.


Published in World
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