The situation in Bor-Pibor area is particularly concerning with fears of violent clashes between youths from the Dinka Bor and Murle communities, David Shearer, the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for South Sudan, told journalists at a press conference today. “We are worried that might spark more widespread fighting between those two communities [and] hence the reason we are providing support to the peace efforts on the ground,” he added, noting also the work that is being done with the Government to ease the situation. “The important thing is that we de-escalate tensions and provide an opportunity to talk rather than to fight because fighting only will result in a greater cycle of revenge [that] will be of no benefit to [anyone].” In his remarks, Mr. Shearer, also the head of the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), spoke of violence in various regions of the country, including attacks on peacekeepers and relief personnel, which have severely constricted the humanitarian operating space, and underscored the Mission’s resolve to do everything it can to ensure that assistance reaches those in need. “The attacks have a direct consequence on humanitarian activities and the assistance that can be provided to people who desperately need it,” he said, terming such violence as an “extraordinarily selfish thing to do”. SEE ALSO: UN appalled at killing of aid workers in South SudanThe senior UN official also praised the work of journalists in the country as well as humanitarian actors on the ground who, despite considerable challenges, are reaching thousands across the country with much needed assistance. “I think we owe them a real debt of gratitude,” he expressed.
With attacks on villages in the DRC province of Ituri continuing over the weekend, UNHCR calls for increased humanitarian access to the area, to cover the population’s enormous protection and assistance needs.Refugees crossing to Uganda talk of growing attacks against civilian populations, as well as killings and destruction of private property. UNHCR staff also received many reports of civilians being hacked to death and killed with arrows.UNHCR works with the Ugandan authorities for the registration and the relocation of the new arrivals to settlements further inland. However, more support is needed to face the demanding situation.Among the critical priorities is the preparation of new settlement areas, together with psycho-social interventions to help refugees overcome their trauma. Meanwhile, crossings through Lake Tanganyika towards Burundi and Tanzania declined significantly last week, currently reaching some 8,000 and 1,200 respectively. Army advances against the armed groups inside DRC, as well as a dwindling supply of readily available fishing boats and canoes, may have contributed to the drop in new arrivals.However, UNHCR is afraid that flows could soon pick up again, given the unpredictable and volatile nature of the conflict.Over the past year, some 120,000 Congolese fled to neighboring countries, joining the 510,000 refugees that were already in exile. With Congolese refugee flows to neighboring countries expected to further increase in 2018, UNHCR is urging donors to step up their support. Of the $368.7 million that UNHCR has requested for the DRC refugee situation, only one per cent has been funded so far. More than 22,000 desperate Congolese refugees crossed Lake Albert to Uganda last week, with four drowning when their boat capsized, the United Nations reported Tuesday, warning that even more lives could be lost on often-perilous lake routes from the conflict-hit eastern regions of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).“The refugees either use small canoes or overcrowded and rickety fishing boats, often carrying more than 250 people and taking up to ten hours to cross,” Babar Baloch, spokesperson for the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) told reporters in Geneva, Switzerland.“Overloaded with luggage and fishing nets, the small canoe, which was carrying the four refugees who drowned on 11 February, had paddled for nearly two days when it was hit by high waves, causing the passengers to fall overboard,” he added.Since the beginning of the year, some 34,000 Congolese have arrived in Uganda. UNHCR staff have reported several other incidents of boats going adrift due to engine failure or insufficient fuel, prompting rescue operations by the Ugandan authorities.On 7 February, UNHCR partners recorded two more deaths at the DRC shores of Lake Albert – which spans the border into Uganda – where thousands of people are waiting to cross, as some wrangled to get onto the boats.
Calling the escalation in fighting “the worst in years”, Henrietta Fore, Executive Director of the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), and Virginia Gamba, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict, issued a statement reminding all of Libya’s warring parties that they are obliged “to protect children at all times in full compliance with international law”.“Killing, injuring and recruiting children, and attacks on education, medical and water facilities are all grave violations of children’s rights and must cease immediately”, they stated – reminding that in line with Security Council resolution 2427, “prevention measures must be put in place to better protect children”.Together they also urged for “safe and unimpeded humanitarian access to all children in need, and for a ceasefire to allow civilians to safely leave areas under conflict”.Children caught in the middleNearly 1,800 children are among the civilians who need urgently to be evacuated from frontline fighting, as the raging violence has already displaced 7,300 others, the two UN officials said. Moreover, around 500,000 children are estimated to be affected by violence across the country’s west.“Children trapped in conflict areas are at risk of running out of food and losing access to medical care” they explained. “Unable to leave these areas, they cannot safely seek protection or assistance”.Pointing out that the violence has also left nearly 1,000 refugee and migrant children held in detention centres “in grave danger”, Mses. Fore and Gamba stressed that “they should be immediately released and provided with safe shelter until their asylum claims can be processed or they can be provided with safe repatriation assistance for reunification with their families”.For their sake, and the sake of the country’s future, the fighting must stop – UN officials“The principle of non-refoulement must be respected”, they maintained, underscoring that unaccompanied minors, many of whom are in transit, “are at risk of grave violations including recruitment and use, sexual violence or abduction”.The fighting is also depriving children of their right to education.The two UN officials detailed that the academic year has not only been suspended in all schools throughout conflict-affected areas, but seven are acting as shelters for displaced families. Additionally, a recent attack on an education warehouse destroyed five million schoolbooks and national school exam results.“Libya has suffered through more than seven years of persistent conflict that has left at least 820,000 people, including some 250,000 children, in dire need of humanitarian assistance”, the UN officials stressed, “and the situation is deteriorating yet again”.“For their sake, and the sake of the country’s future, the fighting must stop,” concluded Mses. Fore and Gamba. General Khalifa Haftar, commander of the Libyan National Army, which controls much of eastern and southern Libya, has waged a two-week military campaign to take Tripoli from fighters loyal to the UN-recognized Government. 122,088 students can’t access their schools in #TripoliThe ongoing hostilities has disrupted education in nine municipalities in the Libyan capital. Teaching teams are unable to access schools in affected areas. Children should not bear the brunt of armed conflicts#NotAtarget pic.twitter.com/k1QJwMVXlI— UNICEF Libya (@UnicefLibya) April 18, 2019
Amongst the markets likely to be represented are Brazil, China, Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, India, Iran, Japan, Mexico, Poland, Russia, Slovakia, South Africa, South Korea and the USA. This coursewill include input from UK SME companies – and includes a uniquechance to meet and influence the frontline UKTI personnel from the key global automotive markets. The SME Forum will take place at the Chesworth Grange Hotel, Kenilworth on Thursday 23 March. It is an open workshop where SME companies with existing or potential business interests in the international markets listed above can meet country experts for advice. The afternoon is free for UK companies to attend. For more information, or to attend the SME Forum, please contact Pat Shaw on 020 7344 9260 (email firstname.lastname@example.org) to reserve your place. Further details available in the attached leaflet.DownloadClick to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window) From 20 – 24 March 2006, SMMT and partners in the Automotive Sector Group, the Motorsport Industry Association (MIA) and Construction Equipment Association (CEA) trade organisations will be running an industry briefing course for UKTI staff based overseas who have specific responsibility for the auto industry. The objective is to make these commercial officers more aware of the strengths of the UK industry, to be more effective in identifying business opportunities and bringing support to UK companies.
On the first day of the Commercial Vehicle Show, Europe’s biggest business-to-business show of its kind, SMMT is publishing Motor Industry Facts – 2006, the pocket-sized guide to facts and figures for the UK automotive sector. The fully updated booklet is packed with industry statistics, from registration and production data, to sector profiles and the rising cost of utilities. For the first time, SMMT Facts 2006 contains data on the bus and coach industry; on motorhomes; on engine manufacturing and on the use of satellite navigation and in-car entertainments.Manufacturing facts:Last year, UK sites produced 1.8m cars and commercial vehicles and 3.1m enginesDuring 2005, average electricity costs rose 33.9 per cent, gas costs by 94.4 per cent and crude oil costs by 49.9 per centNissan (Sunderland), Toyota (Burnaston) and BMW MINI (Cowley) were the top three car producers in 2005. GM in the UK topped the commercial vehicle producers listCommercial vehicle facts:In 2005, CV production breaks 206,000 unit level for only the second time since 1999Total new CV registration stood at 385,969 units last year, up 39.5 per cent in five yearsRegistrations of new buses and coaches rose 14.8 per cent since 1996Motorhome registrations jumped 71.8 per cent in last five years63 per cent of CVs produced in the UK were destined for export marketsCar facts:Total car registrations in 2005 stood at 2,439,717 unitsDiesel new car market increased 145 per cent in ten years to 897,887 unitsFleet registrations has risen 16.4 per cent since year 2000184,490 more new superminis left showrooms in 2005 compared to 10 years agoImproved CO2 performance greatest among new 4x4s and people carriers10 million combined new and used car sales in 2005In 2005, 2.1m in-car entertainment and satellite navigation systems were sold in the UK, a massive 1860 per cent increase in just five yearsSMMT chief executive Christopher Macgowan said, ‘Motor Industry Facts – 2006 contains a wealth of useful information on the UK automotive industry. At a challenging time, we hope that the market trends and key safety, security and emissions information remind everyone what a positive, forward-thinking industry we have in the UK.’Motor Industry Facts – 2006 can be downloaded, for free, by clicking on ‘download report’More detailed production, first registration, used sales and vehicles on the road reports are available from SMMT Data Services. For more information call 020 7235 7000.DownloadClick to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)
‘We recognise the importance that cars play in climate change but everybody has a role to play in reducing CO2 emissions. It is important to put this in context and if the Commission is intent on placing the onus onto car manufacturers, then we see serious difficulties ahead. There is a huge threat to employment and the economy. Not only will the choice of cars be reduced by these measures if we are to meet the limits, but independent estimates place a projected increase in the region of £2500 to the sale price of each new car.’ The motor industry is a world leader in many fields of expertise, based on a long tradition of innovation and fulfilling consumer demand. Preserving the environment is always a key consideration for car manufacturers and the technological solutions are available, but at a cost. New markets and jobs are only created when there is clear demand and an economic basis to back this development. ‘The industry is committed to reducing the environmental impact of our products and we have proven that we are doing our bit by hitting interim targets of our voluntary agreement. We have also already produced and brought to market cars that can meet the 120g/km limit – the problem is that motorists do not buy them!’ said SMMT chief executive Christopher Macgowan. While the motor industry accepts that it has an important part to play in the climate change debate, it has grave concerns over the impact of proposals made today by the EU Environment Commissioner, Stavros Dimas. For more than a decade, car makers have voluntarily made significant progress in reducing CO2 emissions from their vehicles, but this proposed legislation is likely to result in less choice for the motorist and higher prices on the dealer forecourt. Car makers believe that a concerted drive by all the stakeholders – Government, oil companies, suppliers and motorists – would not only be the quickest and most effective solution to reducing CO2 but also the cheapest. The motor industry has shown its willingness and capability to produce technological solutions. What is now required is an integrated approach from all stakeholders to work towards these important aims of the Commission, without causing a negative impact on consumer choice and the economy.Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)
For more detailed charts and documents, please see the attached. DownloadClick to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window) · New car registrations were up 31.6% in October to 168,942 units· Year-to-date registrations at 1,685,981, down 12.3% · Fourth month of growth sustained by the Scrappage Incentive Scheme (SIS)· Private demand up 86% in the month, further supporting positive impact of SIS “October has seen this year’s biggest monthly increase in registrations with the successful scrappage scheme accounting for over 20% of them,” said Paul Everitt, SMMT chief executive. “We have seen additional demand created by the extension of the scheme and customers wanting to avoid the VAT increase planned for January. Encouragingly, there has also been an increase in demand in the fleet and business sectors, which will be critical in sustaining recovery next year.”
SMMT yesterday hosted its second Open Forum event of the year which focused on component and commercial vehicle manufacturing. Over 70 people attended the event which welcomed van, truck, trailer, bus and component manufacturers and bodybuilders to discuss aspects of the UK’s supply chain, technology issues and the manufacturing outlook.Attendees were offered greater insight into respective manufacturing sectors through presentations from industry experts.Neville Jackson, Chief Technology and Innovation officer and member of the Automotive Council Technology Group, provided an overview of the technology issues facing the commercial and off-road vehicle sectors. Presentations were also given by Ian Henry, Director of AutoAnalysis and independent Analyst, Peter Symons which outlined the future outlook for the sector.A panel discussion provided an opportunity for attendees to put questions to the speakers, followed by closing remarks from SMMT Chief Executive, Paul Everitt.SMMT took the opportunity to announce the appointment of Nigel Base as Commercial Vehicle Development Manager at the forum too. Nigel joins SMMT from his most recent role as Aftermarket Director at a premium truck manufacturer and will be responsible for strengthening the standing of the UK commercial vehicle sector. The role will continue to build positive relationships between UK-based commercial vehicle manufacturers and industry bodies.Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)
SMMT today launched its Growth Paper at an All-Party Parliamentary Motor Group (APMG) meeting, where senior MPs delivered their perspectives on economic growth, manufacturing and trade and export activity in the UK.Chaired by Lorely Burt MP, this morning’s APMG meeting provided senior MPs with the opportunity to share views on manufacturing, trade and export activity in the latest government drive to deliver sustained growth and rebalance the UK’s economy.Keynote speakers, Justine Greening, Economic Secretary to the Treasury and Adrian Bailey, MP and Chair of the Business Select Committee, spoke of government’s priorities for growth, trade and UK manufacturing, as set out in its ‘Plan for Growth’, published in March this year.SMMT provided a briefing document, ‘UK Automotive – Driving Growth‘, outlining the importance of the UK’s automotive sector, which employs over 700,000 people, contributes an average annual economic value of £8.5bn and exports to over 100 markets worldwide.Click through to see the latest statistics about the UK’s automotive sector.Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)