first_imgThe pair noted that the concept paper published by the exchange was not yet a fully-developed proposal, but bemoaned its one-sided approach.“Considerable weight is given to the interests of the exchange in attracting the listing of certain issuers, compared to the interests of long-term investors in supplying capital to issuers,” they said.NBIM acknowledged it could be appropriate to relax some eligibility criteria at least in the early stages of a newly listed company’s life cycle, and supported motivating businesses to go public.“Our main concern is with the suggested introduction of Weighted Voting Rights (WVR) on the new board,” the letter said. “This would allow issuers to provide unequal voting rights to shareholders of different share classes.”NBIM opposed a similar proposal three years ago, recommending that the exchange stick to the long-standing rule of banning differentiated voting rights.“We recognise that the exchange in its current concept paper proposes to limit the introduction of WVR to a new board, but in our view this does not provide sufficient safeguards against the weakening of investor protection,” Johnsen and Gjessing said.In the long term, issuers were likely to be willing to adapt to higher standards of corporate governance if incentivised by the listing framework, they argued. “We believe the Hong Kong market has an opportunity to compete as a stock exchange with high-quality market standards,” they said.The criticism from one of the world’s largest investors comes as China is attempting to open up its stock and bond markets. In June, MSCI added A-shares – equities listed on the Chinese mainland – to its indices, effective next year.Last month China’s central bank opened up its “bond connect” service, allowing investors to trade Chinese fixed income via Hong Kong. The manager of Norway’s NOK7.7trn (€826bn) sovereign wealth fund has warned Hong Kong’s plan for a new market for tech startups and new Chinese companies lacks safeguards against weakening investor protection.In a letter to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, Norges Bank Investment Management (NBIM) took issue with the idea of having different levels of voting rights for different shares in Chinese firms.In June, Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing (HKEX) proposed several changes to its listing framework, including the addition of a third board to attract “new economy” technology firms.In the letter, NBIM’s Petter Johnsen, CIO for equities, and senior analyst Peter Gjessing said: “We would have liked to see a more balanced consideration of the interests of all the stakeholders in the listing environment.”last_img read more

first_imgNew Delhi: Ramkumar Ramanathan notched up a straight set win over Canada’s Vasek Pospisil to reach his first ever ATP semi-finals but veteran Leander Paes bowed out after losing his doubles quarterfinal at the Hall of Fame Open grasscourt tournament in Newport.The 23-year-old from Chennai took one hour and 18 minutes to get across Pospisil 7-5, 6-2 in the quarterfinals on Thursday.The 161-ranked Indian will meet American Tim Smyczek in the last four of the tournament.Ramanathan, who had stunned world No. 8 Dominic Thiem at the Antalya Open last year, sent down five aces and converted the three break points that came his way.Paes, who is playing his first match since creating the Davis Cup world record in February for most number of wins in doubles, and his American partner Jamie Cerretani suffered a 3-6 6-7 (3) loss to giant-killers Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan and Austin Crajicek in the doubles quarterfinals.Jeevan and Austin, who had toppled top seeds Nicholas Monroe and John-Patrick Smith in the first round, will face fourth seeds Spain’s Marcelo Arevalo and Mexico’s Miguel Angel Reyes-Varela in the semifinals.In-form Divij Sharan and his partner Jackson Withrow, seeded second, defeated Australia’s Matthew Ebden and Ukraine’s Sergiy Stakhovsky 7-6 (4) 6-3 to set up a semifinal clash with New Zealand’s Artem Sitak and Israel’s Janathan Erlich.Artem and Janathan saw off third seeds India’s Purav Raja and British Ken Skupski 4-6 6-3 10-8 in a thrilling quarterfinal contest. For all the Latest Sports News News, Tennis News News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps.last_img read more

first_imgThe Soweto Gospel Choir are known andloved for their exuberant performances. (Image: University of California Santa Barbara, Arts and Lectures) The Soweto Gospel Choir make history by becoming the first SA musical act to perform at the Oscars. (Image: Soweto Gospel Fans) Members of the choir on the red carpet at the 81st Academy Awards. (Image: Soweto Gospel Fans) Former president Thabo Mbeki praised the Soweto Gospel Choir on their second Grammy Award success. (Image: Elmond Jiyane, GCIS ) The Soweto Gospel Choir perform for former president Nelson Mandela. (Image: Soweto Gospel Choir)Janine ErasmusThe Grammy-winning Soweto Gospel Choir added another notch to their collective belt by wowing the audience at the 81st Academy Awards. The multi-award-winning group performed their Oscar-nominated song Down to Earth from Disney’s animated hit film Wall-E.“Down to Earth” was one of three nominees for Best Original Song and was up against renowned composer AR Rahman’s “O Saya” and “Jai Ho”, both taken from the film Slumdog Millionaire. Vikas Swarup, author of Q&A, on which the film was based, currently works in Pretoria as India’s Deputy High Commissioner to South Africa.“Jai Ho” was the winner on the night, while Slumdog Millionaire itself bagged a massive haul of eight statuettes, including Best Director, Best Picture, Best Cinematography and Best Score. Wall-E won the Oscar for Best Animated Feature Film.Making historyThe pride of the local choral scene made history by becoming the first South African musical act ever to receive an invitation to perform at the Oscars. The ceremony, arguably the world’s greatest showbiz event, took place on 22 February and was broadcast in 53 countries.The choir’s executive producer, Beverly Bryer, was ecstatic. “This is an unbelievable accolade,” she enthused. “They have achieved so much since the start of their musical journey, but being on stage and singing before a worldwide audience, at the most prestigious of all awards ceremonies, is an honour they will always treasure.”The choir recorded “Down to Earth” with famous musician and humanitarian Peter Gabriel, but performed it at the awards ceremony with six-time Grammy winner, John Legend.Gabriel withdrew from participating at the Oscars as a gesture of protest, after he was informed that the three nominated songs would be presented as a medley and that the audience would be treated to just a portion of “Down to Earth”. The singer said he didn’t feel that the allotted 65 seconds was enough time to properly showcase the song. Nonetheless even in that short time the choir managed to leave their mark on the Academy Awards audience.In February 2009, at the latest edition of the Grammy Awards, “Down to Earth” scooped the award for Best Motion Picture Song.Humble beginningsFrom humble beginnings at home, the Soweto Gospel Choir has risen to become an international sensation. Considering that they have been together for just seven years, they have notched up a number of remarkable achievements, including two Grammy awards and performances with Gabriel, Bono, Queen, Celine Dion, Annie Lennox, and the Red Hot Chilli Peppers, among others.The 52-member choir has performed all over the world, delighting audiences with their soaring harmonies, energetic dancing and vibrant costumes. They have entertained the likes of former United Nations secretary-general Kofi Annan, former South African presidents Nelson Mandela and Thabo Mbeki, former US president Bill Clinton, talk show queen Oprah Winfrey, and Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu. Tutu is the choir’s proud patron.The Soweto Gospel Choir, which sings in six of South Africa’s 11 official languages, was formed in 2002 by Bryer and choirmaster David Mulovhedzi and was drawn from church and community singing groups in the Soweto area.The group sings traditional and contemporary music and has won accolades from many countries, including an Australian Helpmann Award in 2003, an American Gospel Music Award in the same year, and three Grammy nominations. They have appeared on high-profile television shows such as The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and Late Night with Conan O’Brien.The choir’s debut album Voices from Heaven topped the Billboard world music charts. Their follow-up release Blessed followed suit, and both it and the third album, African Spirit, won Grammys in 2007 and 2008 respectively for Best Traditional World Music Album.The Soweto Gospel Choir received its third Grammy nomination in 2009 but failed to make it three in a row. However, fellow nominees Ladysmith Black Mambazo walked off with the Best Traditional World Music Album award for their latest release Ilembe: Honouring Shaka Zulu.Supporting those in needA very important aspect of the Soweto Gospel Choir’s mission is to raise funds for its own Aids orphans foundation Vukani, established in 2004. Vukani (isiZulu, meaning “wake up”) has adopted Nkosi’s Haven, a long-term refuge for mothers suffering from Aids and their children, as well as those already orphaned.Nkosi’s Haven was named after the extraordinary child activist Nkosi Johnson, who was born HIV-positive and died of Aids in 2001 at the age of 12. The group gives 50% of all donations to the haven, according to Bryer, and to date has raised well over R3-million for the cause. The remaining 50% is shared amongst other needy organisations.“That’s very important to us,” said Mulovhedzi. “We feel proud we are doing something and not just singing.”As ambassadors for Nelson Mandela’s Aids awareness 46664 organisation, they continue to support those desperately in need. “Being 46664 ambassadors has given them the chance to travel and meet other ambassadors around the world,” commented Bryer. “It is their pride and joy.”Do you have queries or comments about this article? Contact Janine Erasmus at janinee@mediaclubsouthafrica.com.Related storiesMambazo win their third GrammySouth African musicHealthcare in South AfricaHIV-Aids in South AfricaUseful linksSoweto Gospel ChoirSoweto Gospel FansNkosi’s Haven VukaniNkosi JohnsonAcademy AwardsThe Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences46664last_img read more

first_imgView comments DA eyes importing ‘galunggong’ anew LATEST STORIES Lomachenko (12-1, 9 KOs) risks his two lightweight world titles at Staples Center in downtown Los Angeles when he takes on Britain’s Anthony Crolla.Crolla (34-6-3, 13 KOs) is a big underdog against the masterful Lomachenko, whose technique and athleticism have propelled him from two Olympic gold medals to the short list of the world’s greatest pound-for-pound fighters.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesSPORTSSingapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logisticsLomachenko trains outside Los Angeles, and he has already fought in the LA area twice. But he has never appeared in this fight-loving city’s most prominent indoor arena, and the mere idea of headlining in such a cavernous venue would have been improbable just a few years ago.“It’s a very exciting place,” Lomachenko said. “After my first (LA) fight at Microsoft Theater, I looked across the street and thought, ‘Wow, maybe someday I can get into Staples Center.’” Panelo: Duterte ‘angry’ with SEA Games hosting hassles Philippine Arena Interchange inaugurated Harry Kane suffers ‘significant’ ligament injury, likely to miss rest of Premier League season Crolla has watched Lomachenko’s bouts with admiration, but he has been fighting for too long to be intimidated.“He’s the best fighter in the sport, and I’m grateful for this chance,” Crolla said. “Even the best fighter in boxing is beatable. Nobody is bigger than the game, so I go into this fight knowing I’ve got a chance and a strategy to beat him.”Crolla is making his U.S. debut, but the Manchester native is likely to have every British athlete’s contingent of vociferous stateside fans. Crolla has another advantage, according to Lomachenko.“He’s very good, and he’s in a comfortable position because he has nothing to lose,” Lomachenko said.The Staples Center card also includes Mexican star Gilberto “Zurdo” Ramirez making his light heavyweight debut against Tommy Karpency in the co-main event, along with veteran brawler Mike Alvarado facing unbeaten Arnold Barboza Jr.Lomachenko isn’t looking beyond Crolla to other fights, partly because no big fight looms. He wants Commey’s belt, but the biggest money would come from a showdown with former American lightweight champion Mikey Garcia.But even if Garcia could get over his antipathy toward Top Rank boss Bob Arum — his former promoter and Lomachenko’s current promoter — Lomachenko and Garcia probably can’t find a common weight. Lomachenko says he is too small for 140 pounds, and Garcia could struggle to get back down to 135 after fighting at welterweight — and getting thrashed by Errol Spence Jr. — last month in Texas.Until money creates the motivation to solve this dilemma, Lomachenko will go on showcasing himself to the world against the best opponents he can find. Crolla is worthy, and Lomachenko is taking him seriously.“I get nervous a little before a fight, but when I step in the ring, I’m in my place,” Lomachenko said. “I start to enjoy it right away. A couple of rounds, and then I find my moment.” Hontiveros presses for security audit of national power grid SEA Games hosting troubles anger Duterte Ethel Booba twits Mocha over 2 toilets in one cubicle at SEA Games venue Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting MOST READ FILE – In this May 12, 2018, file photo, Vasiliy Lomachenko, left, of Ukraine, throws a punch at Jorge Linares, of Venezuela, during the WBA lightweight championship boxing match in New York. Lomachenko is a significant favorite when he defends his two lightweight titles on Friday, April 12, against Britain’s Anthony Crolla at Staples Center in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Kevin Hagen, File)LOS ANGELES— Vasyl Lomachenko left Ukraine and moved stateside several years ago because he dreamed of fighting for big money in the world’s most popular boxing venues.After headlining at Madison Square Garden, in Macau and in several spots around Las Vegas, Lomachenko is going Hollywood on Friday night.ADVERTISEMENT PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games PLAY LIST 02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss Less than two years after that LA debut in the smaller Microsoft venue, Lomachenko has moved across the street for a title defense he is expected to win with style — and not just because he’s wearing an outlandish robe worth a reported $200,000 into the ring.Any opponent under 140 pounds would be an underdog against Lomachenko, but the lack of a theoretically worthy opponent doesn’t interest the champion. Until a bona fide challenger to his dominance emerges at 130 or 135 pounds, he will keep racking up wins.“I don’t care,” Lomachenko said with a smirk. “In my fights, I just want to show off my skills. My opponent, whoever. I just want to enjoy it and to put on a good and interesting fight.”Lomachenko’s next fight was supposed to be a title unification bout with Ghana’s Richard Commey, who holds one of the two remaining lightweight belts that Lomachenko covets. But Commey emerged from his bout Feb. 2 with an injured right hand, and Lomachenko elected to stay active by entertaining his mandatory challenger for the WBA crown.While Crolla is widely respected for his toughness and resilience, Lomachenko sometimes seems to be competing in a different sport. His footwork alone inspires rhapsodic appreciation from veteran fight watchers, and his hand speed is similarly peerless.ADVERTISEMENT Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. 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