Estonia’s Ministry of Finance has published a draft law intended to provide more investment choice for pension funds and more flexibility to investment funds, and help develop local capital markets.The proposed Investment Funds Act will relax restrictions on pension funds investing in unlisted securities and real estate, and allow them to acquire controlling stakes in companies.The ban on investing in precious metals and related securities will also be lifted.At present, investments in unlisted securities are limited to 10% of pension fund assets. The new law will raise this to 30%.For real estate, the investment limits will not change.These investments are limited to 40% of the assets of a mandatory pension fund, and 70% for a voluntary fund.However, for a mandatory pension fund there is also a 75% limit for investments in equity funds, shares and similar instruments.And at present, real estate investments are considered to be equity investments – if 40% is invested in real estate, for example, only 35% may be invested in equities.The draft law says real estate, as well as investment in infrastructure projects, should not be included when applying the limit on equities.In addition, voluntary pension funds – i.e. third-pillar provision schemes – will be able to create multiple classes of units, for instance, with different fee structures.At present, all pension fund units can be redeemed at any time, although there is an income tax charge where the unit holder redeems units before reaching the age of 55.The new law will permit asset managers to issue a class of units that cannot be redeemed before a certain age, specified in the pension fund conditions.This change is intended to help incentivise employers to make contributions to their employees’ pension plans.At present, employer contributions are not significant.Pension fund assets in Estonia totalled €1.87bn as at 1 January, out of an aggregate €2.5bn of investment funds subject to financial supervision.But with few companies listed on the stock exchange, it is difficult for pension funds to tap into the local economy.The new law will enable them to support local enterprises and benefit from economic growth.The draft Act also draws on the example of other countries, particularly Ireland, in setting out a framework for a diversified range of investment funds that can be established in Estonia.This should enable the Estonian fund industry to offer services that can be exported, allowing the country to compete internationally as a fund domicile.It will include the use of different investment strategies and fund managers within a sub-funds structure.The simplified management structure for these funds is intended to reduce expenses and increase investor returns.Märten Ross, deputy secretary general at the Ministry of Finance, said: “This change represents the renewal of regulation of the Estonian investment funds market, as well as the strengthening of its international dimension.“The development of Estonia’s capital market will contribute to the recovery of the whole economy.”Under the proposed Act, the rights of retail investors will be protected, with compliance monitored by the Financial Supervision Authority (FSA).However, supervision of funds aimed at professional investors has been waived to reduce the administrative burden.This means there will be more of an obligation on investors to monitor the activities of management companies.Existing legislation – the Funded Pensions Act – took effect in 2004.The government said a new consolidated Act to supersede this has become necessary because of the pace of change in the legal framework of EU investment funds, as well as fund offerings, over the past decade.The draft Act has been published for consultation, with bodies such as the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications, FSA, Estonian Association of Fund Managers, Estonian Private Equity & Venture Capital Association and Bank of Estonia expected to comment.The deadline is 11 August.Once amended, the new law should be enacted later this year, to come into force in 2015.
Greece’s problems with the EU are in some respects the opposite of those of the UK. What Greece would like to see is the EU acting more like a community, with members willing to share economic burdens in a much deeper way, reflecting a commonality of purpose and an acceptance of a more intimate political end-goal. Britain is veering towards the opposite, preferring something less like a community, where one has to obey a common set of laws, and more like a trade federation, allowing individual members freedom to pursue their own interests.But whatever the outcomes for Greece and the UK in their struggles with the EU, Heath’s philosophy, centred on a political necessity for European co-operation that trumps economic arguments, still has some validity. The question, however, for Greece and the UK is whether the attempt to create a very tight economic framework might destroy the chances of creating a longer-lasting, looser political one.Joseph Mariathasan is a contributing editor at IPE Does the political necessity for European co-operation trump economic arguments, asks Joseph MariathasanArundells, the home of the former UK prime minister Sir Edward Heath in the English cathedral town of Salisbury, reopened to the public in March. It provides a spectacular view of Salisbury Cathedral. A painting of the cathedral by the 19th century English landscape painter John Constable ranks as one of his most celebrated works. The house contains Heath’s collections of paintings, sailing and musical memorabilia, and artworks from Europe and Asia. As the story goes, when a guest looked out at Salisbury Cathedral from the front guest bedroom of Arundells and remarked that the view was one of the 10 finest in the country, Heath replied: “Why, what are the other nine?”The debate still rages on regarding the political structure and economic benefits of the EU in general and of the euro-zone in particular when it comes to Greece and the other euro-peripheral countries. But it is worth remembering that the UK’s involvement with what is now the EU began when Heath took the UK into the European Economic Community in 1973. It marked the culmination of a protracted effort by him to take Britain closer into the Europe community that had started way before the time when he was put in charge of the negotiating team for Britain’s first application to join the then European Common Market in the early 1960s. That attempt was vetoed by the French premier Charles de Gaulle. Even after Heath lost power and was ousted as leader of the Conservative party, Europe remained the great theme throughout the rest of his life and was a prime cause of his famous battles with Margaret Thatcher, his successor as leader of the Conservative party and later prime minister.I got to know Sir Edward in his later years, when, as an adviser to a China fund I had set up, he travelled with us often to Beijing. He seemed to enjoy the trips – probably because he received much better treatment there than he did back home, where the anti-European sentiments of much of his party had made him an outcast. Despite his success as a politician, it is fair to say he was not an economist, and it was not economic arguments that drove him to take Britain into Europe. It was rather, his experiences as a soldier during World War II, when he saw first-hand the devastation the conflict had caused. For him and many of his generation, joining the European Union was never the result of any economic calculations but rather a means to prevent a third European war in the 20th century by binding the major European powers closer together. That rationale still holds true, but it has been obscured by economic arguments that often appear to have no resolution.
Japan’s MODEC has signed a contract with Woodside to supply a floating production storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel for the Sangomar field development Phase 1 project located in the Sangomar Offshore and Sangomar Offshore Deep oil blocks, offshore Senegal.Artist impression of the Sangomar Field Development FPSO; Image courtesy of WoodsideMODEC was awarded a Front End Engineering Design (FEED) contract of the FPSO in February 2019 and has now been awarded the FPSO purchase contract further to Final Investment Decision (FID) on the Sangomar Field Development, which was made on Friday, January 10, 2020.The FPSO will be deployed at the Sangomar field located approximately 100 kilometers south of Dakar, Senegal. The Sangomar field development is expected to be Senegal’s first offshore oil development.MODEC said on Friday that the FPSO was scheduled for delivery in early 2023. The vessel will be permanently moored at a water depth of approximately 780 meters by an external turret mooring system to be supplied by Sofec, a MODEC group company.The FPSO will be capable of processing 100,000 barrels of crude oil per day, 130 million standard cubic feet of gas per day, 145,000 barrels of water injection per day and will have minimum storage capacity of 1,300,000 barrels of crude oil.“We are delighted and proud to have been selected to provide the memorable first FPSO for Senegalese waters,” commented Yuji Kozai, President and CEO of MODEC.“We consider West Africa where numerous offshore oil and gas fields have been discovered in recent years, as one of our most important core regions, and this contract award should geographically reinforce our business portfolio. We are equally pleased to be a part of the team that will provide a needed energy resource for the people of the Republic of Senegal.”Spotted a typo? Have something more to add to the story? Maybe a nice photo? Contact our editorial team via email. Also, if you’re interested in showcasing your company, product, or technology on Offshore Energy Today, please contact us via our advertising form where you can also see our media kit.
Jerome Fuernstein, 72 years old of St. Leon, passed away Thursday morning, April 30, surrounded by those he loved the most. Jerome had a great sense of humor and loved to tease and tell jokes. His warm personality lit up the room and would make friends with everyone…Jerome never met a stranger. Jerome met his wife, Roseanne of 49 years, at a CYO dance in New Alsace. Since then, they’ve been inseparable. He loved to rebuild cars, fix tractors or anything else that might need some tuning up, “if Roseann broke it, he fixed it”. Jerome had many talents including making wine, tending to his vegetable garden and cooking. He was quite the foodie and one of his favorites was pineapple upside down cake. He also loved to hunt and fish and Roseann would gladly prepare anything he brought home for dinner. Another hobby was bee keeping and Jerome, Roseann, and Bridget would make their own honey. They loved to camp and hike as a family, enjoying a vacation to a dude ranch and also spending three weeks out west. Jerome’s best friend was his dad and they would spend as much time as they could together. One project that stands out is when they made a chicken coop out of stainless steel doors inside the garage. Between the weight and size of the coop, they could barely get it outside for the chickens to use! But, perseverance paid off and the chickens were happy. Of course, with all the chicken eggs came more cooking including homemade noodles and angel food cake. One of the best memories that many family and friends will have is the 25 years that Jerome dressed as Santa; he was a jolly old soul for sure. It is these stories and more that the family hopes will keep his memory alive. We know during this difficult time, it wasn’t possible for many to see him before he passed, but the memories you created with him left an imprint on his heart he will never forget. Hug those close to you, cherish the stories you have and keep on smiling for him. Jerome was in the Army National Guard and a member of the New Alsace Legion Post 452.Jerome will be greatly missed by his wife Roseann, daughter Bridget of St. Leon, brother James of St. Leon, sister Darlene Mudd of Trafalgar, IN, his dog Jackson, and many close friends. He is preceded in death by his parents Lester & Georgiana and brother Russell.A graveside service with military honors will be held on Saturday, May 9 at 11:00 am at St. Paul’s cemetery of All Saints Parish. Memorials can be made to New Alsace Legion Post 452 or Cincinnati VA Medical Center at 3200 Vine Street, Cincinnati, OH 45220. Andres-Wuestefeld Funeral Home is honored to care for Jerome and his family. Please visit www.andres-wuestefeldfh.com to offer online condolences.
The Tommy Stack-trained filly had shown some promise in two starts as a two-year-old and achieved her best placing to date when filling the runner-up spot behind Aidan O’Brien’s impressive winner. While Moth could now go for such major races as the Irish 1000 Guineas and both English and Irish Oaks, Wannabe Better is unlikely to have lofty ambitions until she gets that elusive first win on the board. Wannabe Better will stick to maiden company in a bid to open her account after playing second fiddle to Classic hope Moth at the Curragh. Press Association “She’s come out of the race well and I guess we will take her somewhere for a maiden in a couple of weeks’ time,” said the trainer’s son and assistant, Fozzy Stack.
Some crisp interplay from Swansea carved out the opening goal after 25 minutes. Williams played the ball into Wilfried Bony, whose lay-off to midfielder Leon Britton drew the Palace defence out of position. When De Guzman latched onto Britton’s inch-perfect through-ball, all he had to do was side-foot it past Julian Speroni. De Guzman had a chance for a second goal when he chased a lofted ball over the top from right-back Rangel, but 10 yards from goal he could not get a toe to it. Bony forced a good diving save from Speroni when he met a first-time Rangel cross, after a curling ball from former Palace junior Wayne Routledge. A cheer rang out around the Liberty Stadium at the start of the second half when it was announced the fans’ villain of the piece, Ince, was being replaced by striker Murray as Pulis switched to a more attacking 4-4-2 formation. The rejig got the Eagles back in the game though, and they were finally able to give their fans some territory and pressure to cheer. With only five Premier League goals away from home all season before Sunday’s assignment and the lowest overall tally of any side, applying themselves away from home has become a familiar problem. Leroy Lita made only his second appearance for Swansea, coming on for the weary-looking Bony with half an hour to go. A hooked shot from Murray was easily gobbled up by Vorm and a header from Jerome was comfortably saved a minute later. The game turned after 81 minutes when a mix-up led to a penalty for Palace and a red card for centre-back Flores. Vorm and his defence failed to clear a ball over the top, allowing Murray to toe-poke it past the goalkeeper 20 yards out from goal. With an open goal beckoning he was brought down just outside the box, but referee Dean, some 30 yards behind play, pointed to the spot and sent Flores off. Murray fired the penalty into the top-right corner. He was on the end of the visitors’ next attack too, when his goal-bound shot was blocked by replacement Jordi Amat. In injury time, Palace’s replacement midfielder Jerome Thomas tried to persuade Dean to give another spot-kick but was booked for diving. Jonathan de Guzman had put the home side in front midway through a dominant first half, but tactical changes from Palace boss Tony Pulis pulled the visitors back into the contest. Swansea have now gone six games without a win and appeared to fade after a hectic league and cup schedule. Angel Rangel, Leon Britton and Nathan Dyer all freshened up the starting side that performed admirably in their 3-1 Europa League defeat in Napoli on Thursday. As has become the norm at home, Swansea enjoyed the majority of possession in the first half, hogging 83 per cent of the ball before the break. Playing with a compact five across the midfield, Pulis’ men seemed content to allow the home side to pass it around on the slick, rain-soaked surface. A tame glancing header from Marouane Chamakh was their only chance of note in a limp first-half performance. Boos and whistles of derision accompanied every touch from Tom Ince, who reportedly turned down a loan move to Swansea in January and said before the match that the Welsh team would be unable to handle Palace’s play. Home captain Ashley Williams made his presence felt early on when he gave Ince a two-handed shove in the back. Monk was forced to make an earlier-than-planned change to his side after 22 minutes, bringing on Spaniard Jose Canas to replace in-form countryman Pablo Hernandez. His parting gift for the fans was a left-footed strike, dragged narrowly wide. Pulis also had to make an unwanted substitution when Chamakh went off injured, making way for Cameron Jerome. A dubious penalty rescued a point for Crystal Palace as they drew 1-1 with Swansea at the Liberty Stadium. Chico Flores was sent off after bringing down substitute striker Glenn Murray late on, but the offence appeared to take place just outside the box. Yet referee Mike Dean pointed to the spot and Murray converted in front of the travelling Eagles fans to leave a bitter taste for Garry Monk’s Swans. Press Association
“I expect him to play tomorrow,” was Emery’s sole comment. It now seems, though, that Spain international Moreno might be heading to Anfield sooner rather than later. Moreno came through his home-town club’s youth system, and he made his first-team debut just over two years ago. He is currently on a long-term contract with Sevilla, and there has so far been no confirmation from the Spanish club about any departure. The 22-year-old, who has been heavily linked with the Reds, was not named in Sevilla’s starting line-up or among their substitutes for the Super Cup clash against La Liga rivals Real Madrid at Cardiff City Stadium. Sevilla manager Unai Emery gave an abrupt response when asked about Moreno’s future at his pre-match press conference on Monday. Press Association Speculation intensified on Tuesday night that Sevilla left-back Alberto Moreno could be on his way to Liverpool.
Carroll has been sidelined since February after undergoing knee surgery and has been eased back into training with the Hammers’ Under-21 squad in recent weeks. A statement on West Ham’s official website said: “Andy Carroll trained with the first-team squad on Tuesday and he will continue to do so as he continues to build up his match fitness ahead of a competitive return to action.” The 26-year-old could now be in contention to face former clubs Liverpool on August 29 or Newcastle on September 14. Meanwhile, Hammers striker Enner Valencia moved to support the club’s doctors after appearing to hit out in relation to the leg injury he suffered in the Europa League match with Astra Giurgiu last month. “I have had a number of consultation meetings with specialists in London, accompanied by members of the club’s medical staff, and they have always kept me updated me on my injury,” he said in a statement. “It has been a frustrating time, but I would like to make clear that I have the utmost respect and confidence in the club’s medical team and the specialists I was referred to, and I would like to apologise to them and the club for any issues arising from the recent press coverage. “It is not possible to put an exact date on when I might be back on the pitch, but you can be rest assured that I am motivated to get fit and score more goals for West Ham United as soon as I can.” Press Association West Ham striker Andy Carroll is closing in on a Premier League return after he trained with the club’s first-team squad on Tuesday.
“Wish we could have had a little bit more time to evaluate, but we certainly understand this was the time we had to pull the plug,” Smith told the Big Ten network.A statement from Nebraska’s president, athletic director and coach was more stern: “We are very disappointed in the decision by the Big Ten Conference to postpone the fall football season, as we have been and continue to be ready to play.”Nebraska coach Scott Frost and Ohio State coach Ryan Day had both suggested Monday that if the Big Ten did not play their schools might look elsewhere for games.“We have 14 schools in the Big Ten right now and I expect to have 14 schools in the Big Ten,” Warren said.In the Pac-12, where Southern California, Oregon, Washington and Stanford have won championships in recent years, there seemed to more consensus. August 11, 2020 The Southeastern Conference and Atlantic Coast Conference released statements expressing cautious optimism. The Big 12 was quiet, but a person familiar with the conference’s discussions told The Associated Press the league was continuing to work toward playing in the fall. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the conference was not planning to make its internal discussions public. The Big 12 has still not released its revised schedule.Outside the Power Five conferences, the American Athletic Conference, Conference USA and Sun Belt made no immediate moves.“Everyone is going to make their independent decisions and I certainly respect our colleagues,” Scott said. “We try to be very collaborative, communicative with our peers across the country. But at the end of the day, our presidents and chancellors looked at what was in best interest of Pac-12 student-athletes based on the advice and frankly what’s going on in our communities.”The Big Ten said it was postponing all fall sports and hoping to make them up in the second semester. An hour later, the Pac-12, the Big Ten’s Rose Bowl partner, said all sports would be paused until Jan. 1, including basketball.Players around the country were stunned. Many had recently taken to social media with the hashtag #WeWanttoPlay. Ohio State star quarterback Justin Fields was among those trying to present a unified front and save their season. Despite pleas from players, coaches and President Donald Trump in recent days to play on, 40% of major college football teams have now decided to punt on a fall season, a decision that will cost schools tens of millions of dollars and upends traditions dating back a century.Both conferences cited the risk of trying to keep players from contracting and spreading the coronavirus when the programs are not operating in a bubble like the NBA and NHL are doing. They also cited the broader state of the pandemic in the United States, which has had more than 5 million cases of COVID-19.“Every life is critical,” first-year Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren told the AP. “We wanted to make sure we continually, not only in our words but in our actions, do put the health and safety and wellness of our student-athletes first.” Two smaller conferences, the Mid-American and Mountain West, had already announced the uncertain move to spring football. The decisions by the deep-pocketed Big Ten and Pac-12, with hundred million-dollar television contracts and historic programs, shook the foundation of college sports.What’s next? After the announcement, Fields simply posted to Twitter: “smh,” short for shaking my head.“Our lives are changing forever right before our eyes,” Arizona offensive lineman Donovan Laie tweeted.Less than a week ago, the Big Ten — which includes perennial powers such as Ohio State, Michigan, Nebraska and Penn State — had released a revised conference-only football schedule it hoped would help it navigate a fall season filled with potential COVID-19 disruptions. Even after the Big Ten made its call, there were diverging thoughts about how it should have proceeded.Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith said he would have liked to have pushed back the season from Sept. 5 to maybe early October. “We feel good about our decision,” Oregon President Michael Schill said. “We would have made this decision independent of the Big Ten. We respect the institutions in the Big Ten. Many of them have the same values we have. We’re pleased they are joining us.”The cost of losing football will be devastating to athletic departments. The Big Ten distributed more than $50 million to most of its members in 2018, but most of that came from media rights deals and a conference TV network powered by football. Maybe some can be recouped in the spring, but there are bills to pay now.Wisconsin of the Big Ten has estimated $100 million in losses with no football at all. Michigan said it could be in the red more than that.“We do have a reserve that will take us so far, but we’re going to have to have some layoffs,” Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez said. “There will be some of our units that won’t be working. Those are things we have a plan for. Those are very difficult decisions to make.”Over the last month, conferences had been reworking schedules in the hopes of being able to buy time and play a season. The Big Ten was the first to settle on conference-only play, in early July, and all the Power Five conferences eventually switched to either all or mostly conference play. Big Ten, Pac-12 pull plug on fall football amid pandemic Associated Press Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditA crumbling college football season took a massive hit Tuesday when the Big Ten and Pac-12, two historic and powerful conferences, succumbed to the pandemic and canceled their fall football seasons.Five months almost to the day after the first spikes in coronavirus cases in the U.S. led to the cancellation of the NCAA basketball tournaments, the still raging pandemic is tearing down another American sports institution: fall Saturdays filled with college football. “This was an extremely difficult and painful decision that we know will have important impacts on our student-athletes, coaches, administrators and our fans,” Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott said. “We know nothing will ease that.” The idea behind it was to create flexibility to deal with the possibility of having to cancel or reschedule games because of COVID-19 outbreaks, like the ones that have hit Major League Baseball.It also created an every-conference-for-itself atmosphere that could now lead to two college football seasons — one in the fall and one in the spring. Or maybe none at all.__Follow Ralph D. Russo at https://twitter.com/ralphDrussoAP and listen at http://www.westwoodonepodcasts.com/pods/ap-top-25-college-football-podcast/___ More AP college football: https://apnews.com/Collegefootball and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25
Election day has come and gone. Now is the start of another two years of more unfulfilled promises.No offense government, but since you aren’t going to do what I want anyways, I care more about what bowl game the Badgers may end up in, whether the Packers are going to win, and how I could permanently make College Library my second home since I’m there all the time.The election I’m actually looking forward to is getting closer every day. While I won’t actually be able to vote on my own in this one, I just can’t wait to see what happens.I’m talking, of course, about the race for the Heisman Trophy.It’s college’s best player, how can you not be excited to see who claims the prestigious title this year?The race has been pretty close all season, with a number of players jumping in and out of serious consideration.Michigan’s Denard Robinson was putting up big numbers early in the season in both rushing and passing yards, but that’s not too surprising considering he basically is Michigan’s entire offense. With four games left Robinson only needs 491 more passing yards to get to a total of 2,000 and 713 more yards to reach 2,000 rushing yards. But those last four games consist of Illinois, Purdue, Wisconsin and Ohio State.Even if he made the 2,000 yards rushing and passing mark, Michigan has only won one Big Ten game and has a 5-3 record overall. His impressive stats just won’t be enough to take home the Heisman.Robinson may have been making headlines early in the season, but all eyes are now on Auburn’s quarterback Cam Newton.Newton has led his team to a perfect and so far magical season. Through nine games Newton has thrown for 1,573 yards and 15 touchdowns. Also, Newton holds a 172.6 passer rating, which is good enough for third in the nation behind two other Heisman hopefuls: Boise State’s Kellen Moore and Iowa’s Ricky Stanzi.Moore and Newton may have lead their teams to perfect seasons so far, but all three of these quarterbacks have shown they can handle some tough games and keep their team in the fight till the final seconds. But Newton seems to have something the other two or even the rest of the Heisman candidates don’t have: a special presence on the field.He’s just exciting to watch. Even when it looks as if he’s run out of any options, he keeps the play alive and gets his team down the field. He’s like a young Brett Favre – key word ‘young’ – he’s exciting to watch and you just want to see what he’s going to do with the ball. Whether he throws it deep, throws a quick slant route or runs it himself, the guy can gain yards and eventually get the ball in the endzone.Newton also is an irreplaceable asset to the Tigers. Now I’m not a big believer at all in the fact that one man makes a team great, but I don’t think Auburn would be ranked so highly if it were not for Newton.Only one thing really stands in Newton’s way: Alabama. With only three games left in the season Auburn has to face Chattanooga, Georgia and then at No. 6 Alabama. If Newton performs as well as he has all season, I believe the Hesiman trophy is his.Not only is Newton expected to take home the Heisman this year by the majority of college football fans, people are already questioning whether the junior will enter the NFL draft a year early. I think the guy just needs to finish this season first.If the Crimson Tide defense is able to shut down Newton and Oregon stays on top of the rankings, versatile running back LaMichael James is next in line for the Heisman Trophy.James is fast, tough and maybe has just as much magic as Newton does on the field. But if you ask me, James does not have that special it factor that sets him apart from the rest of the elite players. Maybe it’s Newton’s history compared to where he is now, or the fact that he’s unique to his team, there’s just something special about the guy.Obviously with three to four games left anything can happen any given Saturday. Even with his biggest test ahead I’m still confident Newton will give a good performance, he has so far in every game this year. Like I said earlier, if Alabama completely shuts him down then it just wasn’t his year to be the best college player, but if he is still able to put up some big stats he’ll be able to claim the Heisman all for his own.So instead of claiming support for a government representative who’s going to try in what feels like the distant future to fix any of our country’s problems, I’ll endorse Auburn’s quarterback for this year’s Heisman Trophy winner.