Jamaica’s first ever competitor at the Winter Youth Olympics Daniel Mayhew finished in 13th position in the Monobob competition in Lillehammer, Norway on Saturday morning (Jamaica time). Mayhew, who was introduced to the bobsled event less than a year ago, stopped the clock at 58.85 seconds in his first run and then posted 58.62 seconds in his second run for a combined time of 1:57.47. This left him in 13th spot in the 15 athlete field. The gold medal went to Germany’s Jonas Jannusch (1:54.29) with Russia’s Maksim Ivanov (1:54.44) taking second and Norway’s Christian Olsen (1:54.53) finishing in third place. In his first heat, Mayhew’s push – off time was an impressive 5.67 seconds but he failed to get enough speed down the course and lost some speed in the fourth sector after hitting turn number 13.
Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain are to open talks with Ashley Cole about a summer move, according to the Sunday Mirror.It is claimed both clubs are willing to offer the Chelsea star a three-year contract but that he may keep his options open, with Manchester United and Manchester City apparently monitoring the situation.There has been speculation about Cole’s future as his contract expires at the end of the season and he is yet to agree a new deal at Stamford Bridge.The Sunday Mirror also say Chelsea believe they will sign striker Radamel Falcao from Atletico Madrid for £40m, while the Sunday Telegraph suggest the Blues are now favourites to sign Newcastle’s Demba Ba.And the Sunday People say Chelsea will have to wait until the summer if they want Bayer Leverkusen striker Andre Schurrle, as the German club have apparently refused to sell him in January.Meanwhile, QPR want to sign Mevlut Erdinc from French club Rennes, the People say.It is claimed R’s boss Harry Redknapp is keen to capture the forward along with Joe Cole and West Ham’s Mohamed Diame.Everton’s Sylvain Distin is again linked with a move to Loftus Road, this time by the Sunday Mirror, who suggest he is a back-up option if Rangers fail to land Tottenham’s Michael Dawson.This page is regularly updated.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 Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebook
The five Brics presidents earlier this year, at the 2012 Brics summit held in New Delhi, India.(Image: Wikipedia) Johannesburg economic development director Marina Mayer, right, speaking at the business breakfast. Brand South Africa CEO Miller Matola is second from left.(Image: Janine Erasmus)MEDIA CONTACTS • Brand South Africa+27 11 483 0122RELATED ARTICLES• More to SA than Nelson Mandela• Brics a boost to Brand South Africa• Driving a new vision for Africa• Insights into doing business in SA• Brics in a nutshellJanine ErasmusBrand South Africa hosted a media breakfast in Johannesburg’s northern suburb of Sandton for a group of visiting journalists from South Africa’s fellow Brics countries, where experts spoke on the country’s investment prospects and competitive advantages.The journalists hail from China, Brazil, India and Russia, and are visiting as guests of Brand South Africa. While in the country they’ll meet with representatives from business and the government, including the departments of trade and industry and environmental affairs.From Johannesburg the group heads to KwaZulu-Natal, where they’ll visit the Dube Tradeport, one of the big drivers of economic growth in the province, and the Transnet Port Terminal, the largest container terminal on the continent. They’ll also pop into the multi-million-rand Moses Mabhida stadium, built for the 2010 Fifa World Cup, and visit the offices of Trade and Investment KZN.On the leisure side, the journalists will have lots of opportunity to taste South Africa’s splendid cuisine, and they’ll spend a night at the ever-popular Hluhluwe Game Reserve in northern KwaZulu-Natal, the heart of the Zulu Kingdom.Hluhluwe is well-known as one of the pioneers of rhino conservation in South Africa, since the start of its Operation Rhino programme in the 1950s and 60s.Sustainable growth“Johannesburg is the cosmopolitan centre, the New York or London of Africa,” said Marina Mayer, executive director of the city’s economic development department, speaking at the breakfast.She was following on from Brand South Africa CEO Miller Matola, who had opened the morning’s proceedings with some insight into developments such as the African common market initiative which is slowly but surely gathering ground but has yet to become fully operational.Matola said that if this free trade area opens up enough by around 2014, it will bring 600-million people into one market and present tremendous opportunities for business and investment.Many of those opportunities are already available in Johannesburg, said Mayer. She mentioned the city’s Buy Sell Invest and Visit initiative, a flagship programme that aims to bring together people from the Brics and Southern African Development Community blocs to partner with private and public organisations.This programme is part of the city’s 2040 strategy, which outlines the growth of Johannesburg over the next three decades into a sustainable, prosperous and resilient place to live and work. It aims to not only attract new investment into the city, but support existing businesses and help them to expand.“In the past we tended to focus on stimulating the economic development of smaller enterprises,” said Mayer, “but we’re now starting to target mainstream companies.”She moved on to an ambitious plan to construct concrete decks over certain railway lines in Johannesburg. This technique, known as decking, is a tried and tested way of addressing limitations in room for growth, and will offer new space for residents and businesses in the city.“We’re looking for a private partner to help us with decking our railways,” said Mayer.Other big opportunities for investors include the urban development zone in the inner city, which offers a substantial tax rebate that’s already been negotiated with the South African Revenue Service, and the proposed aerotropolis around the privately owned Lanseria International Airport, west of Johannesburg.This is becoming an increasingly popular choice for travellers who wish to avoid the often long and busy trip to OR Tambo International on Johannesburg’s far east side. Unlike OR Tambo, which sits between busy industrial areas and residential suburbs, Lanseria is still surrounded by wide open spaces and is ripe for development.Mayer named other initiatives such as the Jozi Skills Hub, which will train people in needed skills and get them ready to be employed, and the Jozi Rising project, which will provide support and incentives for entrepreneurs.After Mayer it was the turn of Cynthia Chikura from Business Unity South Africa, who spoke of South Africa’s competitive advantages – its wealth of natural resources, its relatively open economy and easy regulatory environment, and its progressive foreign policy.“We rely on trade and investment to increase productivity and grow the economy,” she said, “and South Africa is still an attractive investment destination.”The country recorded US$4.5-billion (R36.6-billion) of foreign direct investment in 2011 – this is more than three times the figure for 2010, $1.2-billion (R9.7-billion).“Other nations and trade blocs, such as the US and EU, are looking to Africa, and South Africa is a focal point in many investors’ strategies,” said Chikura. “We have the biggest ports in Africa and we offer access to land-locked countries.”Demand for natural resourcesInternational relations expert Dr Martyn Davies, CEO of research and strategy consultants Frontier Advisory, spoke on the future evolution of Brics itself.“Indonesia and Vietnam, as well as Turkey, Mexico, Colombia, and Nigeria are all candidates for admission to Brics in the future,” he said, adding that the bloc would then have to be renamed to E11, or something similar.“A strong political foundation will determine economic success,” said Davies.He said that growth in Africa has tracked Chinese investment since around 2009, meaning that there is a visible correlation between investment and growth on the continent.“But nobody foresaw the demand for natural resources that would come from China,” he said, “and therefore nobody planned the infrastructure that would be needed. What most African states need most now is industrialisation.”The continent has another chance to plan ahead, and that’s because the World Bank has estimated that 80-million jobs in low-end manufacturing would be lost in China in coming years, said Davies.“We need those jobs in Africa, so let’s start preparing – job loss in China should be job gain in Africa.”In this, the continent faces opposition from other fast-developing regions such as Southeast Asia, he said – but positives such as South Africa’s world number one position in terms of its auditing standards and its stock exchange regulation are hard to top.
Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world. – Nelson Mandela These words ring true now more than ever as South Africa, as with the rest of world, experiences and transitions into a radical period of change presented by the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR). A period which necessitates everyone to be open to learning, re-learning and discovery. The World Economic Forum (WEF) describes the 4th industrial revolution as the advent of “cyber-physical systems” involving entirely new capabilities for people and machines. It represents entirely new ways in which technology becomes embedded within societies and even our human bodies. Man vs Machine or Machine working for Mankind? With all these big words and terms associated with the imminent 4th Industrial Revolution being spoken about… robotics, artificial intelligence (AI), big data, cyber, crypto… may make the ‘giant leap’ into the digital era an intimidating exercise for many. However daunting, the digital era presents a myriad of opportunities for innovation and technological advancement for South Africa as an enabler of human and skills development, business driver and economic growth. Minister of Communications and Digital Technologies, Ms Stella Ndabeni–Abrahams, has been actively driving the message on 4IR and laying the foundation to build a capable and skilled work force. At the heart of 4IR is human centred focus and we need to ensure an inclusive process to ensure no one is left behind, she said. We shine the spotlight on an organisation that is playing its part in the education field and making great strides to arm young girls from previously disadvantaged communities with the required skills for the future world of work through mentorship, empowerment programmes and exposure to Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects and related careers. Technogirl Trust The TechnoGirl Trust exists to deal with South Africa’s skills shortage in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) by encouraging girls to choose STEM subjects in high school. Girls from Grade 9 onwards from disadvantaged communities are placed in corporate mentorship and job shadowing programmes. Since inception in 2005, more than 11,000 girls have benefitted from the programme. Brand South Africa recently joined the Technogirl Trust for the Young Women for STEM in Africa programme in partnership with the University of Johannesburg (UJ). Liana Meadon, Senior Manager: Academic Development Centre stated that the partnership is driven by efforts to close the gender gap in STEM and the programme provided a great platform to motivate and inspire young women to take up careers in the STEM field. The young girls also had the privilege to hear from Dr Tebogo Mashifana, a young woman who is a Senior Lecturer at UJ’s Department of Chemical Engineering Technology, nominee of the 2019 Mail & Guardian Top 200 Young South Africans and motivational speaker making waves in the STEM field. She inspired the girls, telling them that they are capable of achieving anything they put their minds to and shouldn’t let their backgrounds define their destiny. “I look at you and see future engineers, future scientists, and future leaders in the 4th industrial revolution”, she said. Dr Mashifana concluded by telling the learners that the world is rapidly changing and education and hard work are key to a brighter future. The interest and participation in STEM will set them apart and enable them to participate in mainstream careers of the future as digitalisation and the future world of work will be driven by those equipped in the STEM field. The technology driven future affords us the opportunity to redefine our society and explore the future of a digitally enabled economy and countries transformation that is fair, inclusive, sustainable and competitive. As Brand South Africa, we encourage all citizens, not only the youth, to actively get involved in the 4IR and digital economy dialogue and skills development initiatives. It’s not only for government or businesses to adopt and master the digital era, but for all to take part, benefit and contribute towards the growth of the economy and SA’s competiveness.
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