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502 stranded TCN containers so far recovered ―Fashola

ABOUT 502 stranded containers belonging to the Transmission Commission of Nigeria (TCN) have been claimed, the Minister, Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola on Tuesday said.

He said the containers, which had been left stranded at different ports across the country, are on transit to their various destinations.

Fashola spoke, at the presentation of the final report of the 20-year Transmission Master Plan at the TCN headquarters, Abuja.

According to him, this was made possible with the various efforts made by the current administration to increase the capacity of the company.

These, he said, include; budgetary committee on the part of the President, policy approvals, tax approval programmes, the N701 billion payment assurance guarantee, grid expansion programme.


“When this current administration was inaugurated in 2015, the story of the TCN is lack of capacity to transport energy. The story was that it has only the capacity to do 5,000MWs.

Things have changed, the President has given a mandate to the Ministry and by extension to TCN to improve its capacity to deliver service between the GenCos and DisCos and this is backed by policy approvals, tax approval programmes, N701 billion payment assurance guarantee, grid expansion programme and supported by budgetary committee which has been helpful.
“As at yesterday, we have been able to recover 500 containers belonging to TCN containing pieces of equipment that were meant for transmission expansion projects that were left at our ports before President Buhari became president. The containers have travelled to the intended destinations, TCN sites where works have resumed.”

He reaffirmed that as at December 2017, the TCN simulated capacity was 7125MWs adding that more projects will be completed this year.

While receiving the final report of the 20 years transmission expansion plan, the Minister said this will help ensure that issues of stranded power do not resurface in the future.

To this end, he urged all players in the power sector not to only familiarise themselves with the plan, but to also take ownership.

“there is a session of this plan that belongs to all of you,” he added.

He further urged the consultant, Fitchner, to ensure that the report is simplified into a booklet to be given to key players.

Earlier, the interim Managing Director (MD), Engineer Gur Mohammed explained that the 29 years Transmission Master Plan was conceived since the delivery of the National Load Demand Study in 2009.

According to him: “After the conclusion of National Load Demand, it became necessary for the nation to have the Least Cost Transmission and Generation Master Plan in order to meet the demand as explained in the load demand report.

“TCN engaged Fitchner of Germany under the NEGIP, which is a project financed by the World Bank in November 2015.

“The study started with data collection aimed at establishing the basis for the assignment. The data collection was followed by clarification by TCN System Planning Team in 2016.”

While presenting the final report to the Minister, he assured that the TCN took time to review the report by Fitchner.

By Adetola Bademosi

Lagos Launches Electronic Platform To Provide Information On Properties With Pending Court Cases

The Lagos State Government on Tuesday launched the Lagos State Electronic Real Estate Litigation System, an online platform designed to provide easy access information to anyone who intends to deal in real estate with information primarily on whether the property is subject of litigation.

State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Adeniji Kazeem , who launched the online platform in Alausa, Ikeja, Lagos, Southwest Nigeria said with the vision of becoming the largest economy in Africa, it was expected that the level of economic and commercial activities in Lagos State would experience an unprecedented level, height and pace, saying that the real estate sector was expected to further attract a significant amount of attention.

“The world we know today is at the click of a button technology driven and the Lagos State government is certainly in trend with the time. We have been working endlessly to ensure that Lagos is not left in the dark ages. This is why several initiatives and steps are being taken to make Lagos State as technologically driven as possible,” he said.

Kazeem further said the Lagos State Electronic Real Estate Litigation System would provide members of the public with information on pending court cases, notify members of the public of real estate/property which were the subject of pending litigation and ensure that members of the public/professional bodies were able to conduct an efficient search of real estate/property that is faster, reliable and convenient.

The commissioner, who was represented by the Solicitor General and Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Justice, Funlola Odunlami added that the platform would curtail risk associated with property transactions and reduce litigation on real estate as the public could now easily confirm if a property was subject of a pending litigation.


Kazeem stated that the platform would enhance due diligence in property transactions, provide a comprehensive database of real estate/property in Lagos which is subject of litigation and allow the members of the public to file for LisPendens, that is, by submitting their case(s) which is subject of a pending Court case and that same would be regarded as sufficient notice.

“This project was conceived to ensure that citizens of Lagos State are better served. It is now being delivered as another promise kept for a better Lagos for all. This innovative project has been designed in line with this administration’s drive to promote information technology in the State.

“I therefore call on you all to buy into this new initiative, embrace it, and share in our vision of a new, enhanced System of real estate due diligence in Lagos State. This new initiative known as the Lagos State Electronic Real Estate Litigation Electronic System (Lis Pendens Electronic System) makes this readily available for properties in Lagos State,” he said.

Chief Judge of Lagos State, Justice Opeyemi Oke, who was represented Justice Laide Olayinka described the new platform as a worthy initiative, lamenting that there were many property cases subject to litigation in court which people did not know, adding that the platform would surely complement the justice system in the state.

Surveyor General of the State, Sango Wawa said the launch of the online platform was away of moving the real estate industry forward, stressing that the project would enhance the smart city status Lagos is craving, as everything would not be done online.

By Kazeem Ugbodaga

NSE Wants Indigenous Engineers To Drive Infrastructural Development

Mr Emeka Ugoanyawu, the Chairman of Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE) Imo branch, says indigenous engineers should be given the opportunity to drive the infrastructural development in the country.

Ugoanyawu made the call while addressing engineers in Imo during the society’s New Year forum with the theme: Engineering Intervention for Sustainable Development”.

He called on both federal and state governments to use indigenous engineers’ professional to not only develop infrastructures but to ensure sustainability in the execution of projects.
He said infrastructural engineering projects in most states were being carried out by mediocre and non-professionals who did not possess engineering principles, supervision and monitoring skills.

Ugoanyawu urged government at all levels to see NSE as partners and major stakeholders in the development of the nation.
“The first second and third industrial revolution have come and gone and now the fourth revolution is on course and we have been left behind.

“The fourth industrial revolution is bringing together physical, biological and digital system to completely change mankind, while driver-less vehicles and artificial intelligence are already with us, yet we are still talking about things that will not move us forward,” he said.

He therefore urged engineers in the country to rise up to the occasion to save the nation from backwardness as a result of lack of development.


Ugoanyawu said engineers must ensure leaders were responsibility of their actions and inaction by doing the right thing themselves to show good leadership.

Mr Ossai Obiako, a fellow of the Nigerian Institute of Structural Engineers blamed some of the failed projects in Imo on non-involvement of professionals in such projects.

He insisted that an integrity test be conducted on the two flyovers in Imo, adding that a preliminary investigation had faulted the flyovers.
“We have numerous failed projects in Imo and we as professional body is calling on the state government to work with us to find lasting solution to these problems,” he said.

He said the two flyovers had failed because they could no longer serve their purpose and the only solution was to take remedial action by subjecting them to integrity test for the safety of the masses.

Obiako however cautioned pedestrians against using the flyovers until they were certified fit by professionals.

A team of Council for Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria (COREN) led by its National President, Mr Kashim Ali had earlier faulted the integrity of the two bridges during their visit to Imo.

Africa Promises Good Investment Opportunity Says Elumelu at WEF

Mr. Tony Elumelu, group chairman, United Bank for Africa (UBA) and one of Africa’s top businessman, has stressed the need to change the African narrative while concentrating on the myriad of opportunities inherent in the continent, stating that its economic transformation and stimulation should be the focus of all governments and global institutions.

This, he said, is paramount if the continent is to take its rightful position as a strong regional player in the international community, owing to its numerous investment opportunities.

Elumelu, who is the Founder of the Tony Elumelu Foundation, said the time had come for governments on the continent to put things in place to ensure that the continent which has great potential, lives up to it; adding that already, there are signals of the greatness all around.

Speaking during Richard Quest’s programme on CNN  aired on the sideline of the ongoing World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland on Thursday, he said; “the time has come for us to prioritise our young ones, who are the future of this great continent. These are the men and women who are energetic in Africa and who can perform wonders if the enabling environment is there.

“We need to get it right with infrastructure in Africa and with the macro-economic policies and environment. And the good thing is that things are gradually falling in place. I think Africa promises good investment opportunities, the problem has always been creating the right environment for it, and this should be our major focus.” Elumelu stressed.

He added that in Zimbabwe, for instance, there have been recent concerted efforts by the government and the people to change the narrative, adding that “I am optimistic about what is happening in Africa right now, because our leaders are getting it right and in fact what has happened in Zimbabwe is also an indicator of great things to come. The fact that they on their own decided to sort things out the way they did, is a new kind of democracy that the world needs to learn from. “There is so much private global capital looking for the right destination, they can go to Zimbabwe as in other African nations, once the right environment is put in place.”

READ: 13 Reasons Why you Should Exhibit at the 12th Abuja International Housing & Construction Show 2018

While pointing out that the blame game which previously obtained in the continent should be done away with, Elumelu called for increasing support from the private sector as well as key stakeholders to make Africa and African self-sufficient.

Throwing more light on this, he said; “We can’t keep talking about missed opportunities. What I keep saying to people is to put an end to the blame game. Let’s begin to fix what needs fixing and get things right. Our government should get it right, the private sector should come forward and we need to support the young African entrepreneurs; create economic hope and opportunities for them.  “We need to think of how to engage Africa in the 21st century because it is no longer about giving grants and aid to Africa, it is more about engaging them in a way that creates self-sufficiency; independence; and reduces the perpetual syndrome of dependence.

Continuing, he said “There is promise; it is getting better because the way this year has started in Nigeria for instance, we have seen market indicators showing good promise, so we are optimistic that it will be better year. The Key is to prioritise things that are important to us to help the continent to grow.”

– Nigeria Communications Week

Infrastructure finance: Expert advocates Infrastructure Fund, non-traditional funding

Following the huge financing gaps that exist in the area of infrastructure finance and traditional funding that cannot cover the long-term needs of most countries, the need for Nigeria to explore non-traditional ways of funding infrastructure has been advocated. This is coming against the fact that government revenue is limited, obligatory spending is higher than the revenues and leverage is too high.

Speaking as a guest speaker on the theme: Infrastructure Financing Options in a Challenging Economy, at the International Real Estate Federation, FIABCI-Nigeria, in Lagos at the weekend, Mr. Bode Agusto, a finance expert and an independent researcher and consultant, the new approach to infrastructure financing in the country has become imperative because the traditional way which makes the government to be the sole provider of funds for infrastructure investment and projects will be executed through Government Ministries, Departments and Agencies, MDAs, pointing out that “Under this model, in Nigeria, infrastructure projects become politicised as budgets are approved late. There is a proliferation of projects, scarce funds are spread thinly among the numerous projects and we rarely complete any major project, for instance, Lagos-Ibadan Expressway project.” Agusto who said the Federal Government could create an Infrastructure Fund that it will employ to partner with the private sector for the development of projects with strong economics and huge social impact, added that it can then pay N0.5 trillion annually (about half of what it currently spends) into this fund, set up a strong governance process for managing this fund. He said the fund will make, on average, an equity investment of 25 per cent on each project, set up a company incorporated under the Companies Act to own the project such as the National Grid Plc, while others (local businesses, foreign businesses and IDAs) will own the remaining 75 per cent equity and manage the company. This means that potentially, the Federal Government can invest N2 trillion annually from the infrastructure fund. “Each company will pursue its own project, complete it and bill the public for the use of its services. They will prepare annual report and accounts, subject these to external audits, make these accounts public, hold annual meeting of shareholders, pay tax on their profit and pay dividends out of their profit after tax. The companies can also be listed on the NSE to improve their access to capital. “A principal concern of the government is how the poor and weak in society access these services. In agreeing fares with providers of rolling stock for railway services, government will negotiate subsidies for children, senior citizens and the physically challenged. In setting electricity tariffs, government will estimate the monthly consumption of a poor household and, in agreeing tariffs, ensure that consumption up to that threshold is heavily subsidised. “Subsidies fashioned in this way will not blow a big hole in the budget like PMS subsidy currently does. There will be no need for the government to set the domestic price of gas and they will also be able to agree on electricity tariffs that will allow an efficient player cover its cost of capital. “Can this work? The NLNG is perhaps the best example of an infrastructure project that has employed this model. Nigeria sold 5 per cent of its equity stake in the Shell JV to fund its 49 per cent equity contribution to Nigeria LNG. Three international oil companies own the remaining 51 per cent. The business has thrived, building six trains of LNG largely from internally- generated profits and commercial loans. “A non-traditional way is for the government to partner for infrastructure investment. Partners are typically International Development Agencies, IDAs, local businesses and foreign businesses. All these people want their money back plus some returns.

Therefore, infrastructure projects that lend themselves towards public/private partnerships are those with strong economics, for instance, the national grid and rail transportation. “How can the Government partner with the private sector to fund infrastructure projects? Let us use the Federal Government as an example. The Federal Government makes a list of the key projects that she would like to undertake and divide them into two categories. Category1 will be those with strong economics and social impact e.g. the National Grid, Railway Infrastructure, Railway Rolling Stock, 2nd Niger Bridge; Category 2 will be those with weak economics but strong social impact e.g. water for rural communities, rural electrification,” the guest speaker averred.

Property investors prefer tourist rather than urban areas in Greece

According to the findings of a survey conducted by pollsters Kapa Research for the Hellenic Property Federation (POMIDA), a large percentage of property owners are finding it difficult to pay real estate taxes. Only 21.6% of the respondents said that they would be able to pay the unified property ownership tax (ENFIA) next year, compared to 25.4% who said they were unable to cover the tax. 38.3% responded they would find it difficult and 14.7% refused or did not know what to answer.

The data recorded that most of the property owners received late rents and a significant percentage does not receive delayed rent payments from their tenants, with a large portion not receiving any rent at all. The survey also revealed that the majority of real estate owners reduced rents, subscribing to the notion that it is best to get less than nothing at all. 76% have decreased rental rates over the past three years.

  • 30.2% intend to sell some property in the next two years, while 76.4% noted they do not intend to buy property in the next two years.
  • 76.8% consider property taxes to be unfair, while 63.3% of the respondents argue that leasing property is a net loss.

READ: 13 Reasons Why you Should Exhibit at the 12th Abuja International Housing & Construction Show 2018

Furthermore, a long-standing trend in Greek society where investors valued more urban real estate (Athens, Thessaloniki, large urban centres) seems to have been reversed as an increasing number opt to invest in tourist areas.

Canadian real estate prices see biggest drop worldwide

Canadian real estate prices were the fastest rising in the world, just a few months ago. Now we’re claiming the opposite title, as the market explores where prices should be. Newly released Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas (the Dallas Fed) numbers, show a decline in home prices for the third quarter of 2017. This is the first time in over five years that Canadian real estate prices have declined for a quarter. Despite the quarterly drop, prices still remain significantly higher than the year before.

U.S. Federal Reserve home prices index
The Dallas Fed publishes home price indexes for academics and researchers. Today we’ll be looking at their Real House Price Index (RHPI). It’s the same concept as the HPI that Teranet and the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) produce. In fact, they actually use CREA data to create it. They also combine it with data from Royal LePage, Statistics Canada, and UBC. This helps them get a cleaner, and more comprehensive look at the general market.


The inflation adjusted score tracks the aggregate of urban markets across the country, and is updated quarterly. You won’t be able to use these numbers to determine how much you have to pay for your neighbour’s house. Instead, you should use these to get a better read on national home buying trends, and the economy in general. Housing is a very large industry in Canada, and a slowdown would ripple throughout the economy.

Canadian real estate prices dropped 3.8 per cent in Q3
Canadian real estate prices dropped the most since the early 1990s, according to the the Dallas Fed. Real home prices, a.k.a. home prices adjusted for inflation, fell 3.8 per cent in the third quarter of 2017. The single quarter decline is the first drop since 2012, and the largest since the first quarter of 1991. This is the largest single quarter decline in the world according to the Dallas Fed’s global index. The second largest decline they observed was in Italy, where prices fell 0.38 per cent in the quarter.
Canadian real estate prices are still up more than seven per cent annually
Despite the large quarterly decline, Canadian real estate prices are still much higher than they were a year ago. The index is up 7.4 per cent from the same quarter last year, almost twice as much as the aggregate index for other countries. The increase is quickly tapering from peak growth observed in the first quarter of 2017. The quarterly decline is significant, but even so, the market is outperforming many other markets.
Remember that a single data point isn’t indicative of a trend, but the size of the decline is worth taking note of. This marks a break in the five year upward trend the country has seen, and might just be a breather, like in 2012. It could also be the beginning of a broad market correction, like that seen in 1990. The most interesting takeaway is this break occurred starting six months before OSFI mortgage rules were rolled out to cool conventional mortgage borrowing. The rule changes add significant uncertainty to the market, especially after prices are starting to look a little softer.

Former Industry Minister tasks surveyors on Climate Change

Against the backdrop of the ravaging effects of climate change and global warming sweeping across the world, and the need for their adaptation and mitigation,former Minister of Industry, and past Chairman, Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Onikepo Akande, has charged land surveyors to take advantage of their profession as land cartographers to advocate policies that will make the environment sustainable devoid of environmental degradation.

The NEPAD Nigeria Business Group Chairman who spoke on Climate Change and the Role of Surveyors at the 13th edition of the Annual Adekunle Kukoyi Memorial Lecture organised by the Lagos State branch of the Nigerian Institution of Surveyors in Lagos last week, noted that surveyors have the knowledge and expertise necessary for adaptation to climate change in order to protect the present and future generations on possible disasters that might result from the current global warming.

“You work with the land, people, political and social institutions in developing, building and maintaining towns and cities. This puts you at a very important position to advocate and lead the agenda to protect the present and future victims of climate-related disasters,” Akande said.

The former Minister of Industry while advising policymakers on tackling the challenges of climate change, reiterated that surveyors are the custodian of accurate land information and administration and it is important for decision-makers to take consultation for accurate and relevant information on land usage and its impact on the environment.

She enjoined the surveyors through their various associations to ensure developmental projects that will comply with best practices and environmental standards, adding that the safety of beneficiaries of these projects following completion should be of interest to the surveyors from the planning stage.

“Surveyors play an important part in the development process. You are well placed with a unique set of tools and knowledge that gives you the professional responsibility to not only focus on your clients but also the environment. To achieve ecological sustainable environment, you need an in-depth understanding of environmental, social and economic impacts of a proposed development project,” Akande stated.

Read More: 13 Reasons Why you Should Exhibit at the 12th Abuja International Housing & Construction Show 2018

Earlier in his welcome address, the Chairman of the Lagos branch of the Nigerian Institution of Surveyors, NIS, Adeshina Adeleke said the institution decided to discuss the issue of climate change at the summit because it is aware of the effects on livelihood and the lecture affords an opportunity to brainstorm on the way to curb this natural phenomenon.

The chairman noted that as the issue of climate change is global, and is being discussed world over, the NIS is also taking a lead as stakeholders in the environment and land matters to add its voice on ways to combat climate change.

The annual lecture, the 13th in the series, is organised in honour of the pioneer president of the NIS, the late Surveyor Adekunle Kukoyi who was the president of the Institution from 1973 to 1978.

By Kingsley Adegboye

CPPIB to invest $800M in Chinese real estate developments

The Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) will invest $800 million in two new property developments in China by developer Longfor Properties, it announced on Monday.

The projects include a 740,000 square metre residential and commercial development in Western Chinese city Chengdu. The city has a population of 16 million.

The other is a 340,000 square metre development in South Minhang, which is a suburb of financial capital Shanghai.

The developments will both include a shopping mall.

“Both cities are well positioned to capitalize on the future economic growth and harness the returns of growing consumption in China,” said Jimmy Phua, head of real estate investments Asia, CPPIB.

He added the move was part of the pension board’s strategy to grow real estate investments in China, particularly in the fast-growing retail sector.

“The investments will help CPPIB diversify its real estate interests in China, providing attractive risk-adjusted returns over the long term,” he said.


Market regulation
The announcement comes as policymakers in the world’s second largest economy embark on curtailing real estate speculation as home prices continue to surge.

More than 100 cities have imposed measures to crack down on speculative buying with Chinese President Xi Jinping emphasizing that “houses are built to be lived in, not for speculation.”

Housing data released last week showed that the measures were starting to take affect with new home prices rising just 5.3 per cent in December from year ago, compared to 12.4 per cent in 2016.

On Monday, the Shanghai government also announced that it would continue to strengthen regulation of the city’s property market.

Investments in China
Meanwhile, the deal between CPPIB and Longfor is the third of its kind after a 2014 $234 million deal for a similar project in eastern city Suzhou, followed by a $193 million investment in 2016 for a mall in southwestern city Chongqing.

Zhao Yi, chief financial officer, Longfor Properties said the new projects are ideally located high-quality assets that are expected to offer strong returns.

“Our expertise in real estate development as well as in mall operations and management will help us deliver value to our shareholders and partners,” he said.

The services sector in China was one of the big drivers of better-than-expected economic growth last year, according to gross domestic product (GDP) data released last week.

The services industry grew 8.3 per cent in the fourth quarter from a year ago and accounted for almost half of the GDP by value.

Real estate, meanwhile, contributed 6.3 per cent to the economy in the same time frame.

Enugu Gov. Commends Ugochukwu Chime at the Commissioning of ECCIMA House

Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State has reassured the Enugu Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (ECCIMA) of the continued support, assistance and collaboration of his administration for sustenance of the existing business- friendly environment towards the enhancement of economic and commercial potentials of the state.

Gov. Ugwuanyi who gave the reassurance during the commissioning of the new ECCIMA’s multi-dimensional secretariat complex in Enugu, stated that his administration was also committed to “the provision of necessary infrastructure and facilities that would help boost economic activities in the state.
The governor expressed delight that the construction of the complex was part of the efforts being made by the Chamber to build institutional capacity for the development of the organized Private Sector in Nigeria, particularly in the South East Region.

Congratulating the Chamber for the “spectacular” achievement, which he said, would enhance administrative convenience, promote productivity and also cement the rising profile of the Chamber and Enugu State as the hub of business activities in the South East.

Gov. Ugwuanyi equally commended the outgoing President of the Chamber, Rev. Surv. Ugochukwu Chime, “for the vibrancy, innovation, dynamism and creativity that his leadership has brought to the Chamber”.

According to him “the Chamber has, without a doubt, undergone such transformation since he assumed office, as to be ranked as one of the best in the country and even beyond”.
“We assure the Chamber of the continued support and assistance of the state government especially in the sustenance of the business- friendly environment that currently exists in the state and the provision of necessary infrastructure and facilities that would help further to enhance the economic and commercial potentials of the State”, the governor said.


In his welcome address, Rev. Surv. Chime appreciated Gov. Ugwuanyi for “the phenomenal support” towards the spirit of Public Private Partnership, stressing that it is most exemplary and promotes growth in the state.

He acknowledged the invaluable contributions of the founding fathers and past leaders of the Chamber, especially the solid foundation they laid, which he said has crystallized in the progress recorded by the body.

Rev. Surv. Chime said that the Chamber’s relocation to a befitting edifice was “a historic landmark” in the affairs of the organized Private Sector in the country, adding that “this building is a great signpost for the Institutional Capacity Enhancement of the organized Private Sector, particularly in this part of the world”.
“ECCIMA House is a message of hope. It is an affirmation that our God can do all things… The next frontier of battle is human capital development across all levels of our society. We need to pray for, identify, mentor and fund young leaders with vision and passion”, the ECCIMA president said.

He stated that the Chamber was eager to interact with the state government “to define a comprehensive development agenda for inclusive socio-economic wellbeing of our people”, applauding the Ugwuanyi’s administration for “their huge financial and non-financial contributions”.

Source: Daily Post

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