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U.S. Registries – Linking buyers and sellers across North America

2015 saw nearly 1,000,000 international students coming to the United States

The world is crossing borders at record speeds. International tourism receipts are increasing, on the back of a strongly growing global middle class and a steady rise in visa-free travel: above average growth for six years straight; and for the fourth year in a row, global tourism spend has grown much faster than merchandise trade. The rise of China is dominant here, with 120 million Chinese now traveling abroad every year; a trend showing no sign of slowing (interestingly, around the world, only tourism from the former Eastern bloc is significantly shrinking). It’s also developed world interest in ever-more global destinations: even North Korea’s repeated arrests of visitors has not deterred westerners from reaching as far as the hermit kingdom.

The same trend holds for international students. 2015 saw nearly 1,000,000 international students coming to the United States (by far the most important destination for higher education); a 10% year-on-year increase, and the fastest rate of growth since 1979. The rise of China again drives the trend; making up 31% of the total foreign student count (India has 14%, Korea 7%, and Saudi Arabia 6%).

 

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FED OFFICIALS CALL FOR MORE “INFRASTRUCTURE” INVESTMENT?

Bill Dunkelberg, Chief Economist

National Federation of Independent Business

Talk at Aspen was cheap as it always is, with government officials, past and present, calling for more PUBLIC investment in infrastructure, education, training and the like and everyone looking for clues about the direction of monetary policy.  The Fed has become the dominant factor driving financial markets, “follow the Fed”.  So, PUBLIC investment is the key to raising productivity and stimulating the economy?  The last attempt to do this with “shovel ready projects” (which didn’t exist) misfired badly.

 

“Roads and bridges”, yes, there is a great need to invest, some of this is federal (highways) but most of it is in the province of state and local governments whose resources have been drained by slow growth, lower tax revenues, increased welfare payments, unemployment benefits, pension shortfalls, rising public employee costs, and flight from efforts to tax consumers and private businesses to make up the deficiencies.

 

As a stimulus, this is a poor choice.  Planning and permitting lags are long, and this is a capital intensive business, requiring massive amounts of heavy equipment, not of workers.  Environmental regulations pose major barriers to progress in these area.  We tried this before and it didn’t work.

 

“Education and training”, yes, education needs to keep pace with a fast changing job requirements.  However, this is not well done by managing education from a large office building in Washington D.C.  Innovation is stifled by local politicians and teachers unions and certainly isn’t taught or encouraged in public schools.  Educational costs go up but results do not.

 

Short on revenues, governments at all levels are relying on debt to pay for what little they do.  This will only have an unhappy ending as many of our cities have already discovered.  Federal spending increases would also be funded by debt because the federal government always runs a deficit, so more spending means more debt (unless taxes are raised).  In the late 1990s, surpluses were run and debt paid down under the control of a Republican Congress and a strong economy (which the Fed cannot produce).

The real source of productivity gains is the private sector, driven by private innovation and investment in real capital assets (snowplows vs shovels to move snow).   This is not the province of Washington D.C.  What Washington D.C. does do is tax away the earnings that private firms use to finance growth, and impose “redistributive” regulations on firms that waste private resources (including time) and lower the prospective return on investments.  Compliance costs in financial and educational institutions for example impose large demonstrable costs but real benefits for consumers are less clear.  “PC” has become expensive, colleges and universities have very expensive offices devoted daily to these issues, but benefits are less than clear.  Meanwhile, tuition rises.

 

Hiring a worker has become increasingly expensive, paperwork, compliance, taxes, the minimum wage, mandatory health insurance, sick leave and family leave, legal liability, complexity in wage and salary administration, FLRB rulings on unionization etc.  Employers are motivated to find a way to hire fewer workers by the government or prevented from hiring workers by the minimum wage.

 

Interest rates are historically low and large firms have billions in cash stashed away.  Why won’t they spend it, particularly on new equipment and expansion?  Investment in plant and equipment is all about the future, including the decision to “replace” worn out capacity.  It is obvious, then, that business’ view of the future is not particularly positive.  Cash has been used to repay debt, buy back shares, pay dividends, and acquire existing firms, but not much investment in new assets.

 

The process is simple, expected profits or cash flow from an investment are calculated and discounted by an appropriate discount rate which incorporates market interest rates and a risk premium related to the probability that the project will successfully produce the expected returns.  Any stream of expected returns will look better if interest rates are lower.  When market interest rates are so low, it is the risk premium that dominates.  The higher the Discount rate, the lower the estimated value of the investment.

 

Discount Rate = Real rate of interest + Expected inflation + Risk premium.

 

The Risk premium (will the bond be repaid?) that financial markets place on a bond issued by a particular company for a certain maturity can be calculated from information about the price of the bond and the terms it offers using current market rates.  For equities this is not the case, but implicitly the purchaser of stock makes this computation for expected profits.  For greenfield investments (plant and equipment) the choice of the Risk premium is even more subjective.  It depends on the expected course of the economy, regulations specific to the investment, the economic performance of customers, tax policy and the Fed.  All uncertain.

 

The Fed has driven rates on risk free assets to near zero levels, inflation rates are below 2% and consumers expect them to stay low for a long time (University of Michigan).  This leaves the Risk premium which must be very large to discourage investment with such low capital costs.  Uncertainty, measured by the National Federation of Independent Business, is at its highest level in 40 years.  Except for weak sales and the economy, “political climate” is the second most frequently cited reason for not expanding a business and is at a record high level.  Uncertainty about the economy and Uncertainty over government actions ranked fourth and sixth out of 75 problems that small business owners were asked to prioritize in an NFIB survey this year.

 

The Fed laments the weakness in direct investment spending, but fails to understand that its policies have produced a major miss-allocation of funds and are one of the major sources of uncertainty that keep the Risk premium high, discouraging risk taking and investment.

 

fed1 fed2

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It’s hard to be a member of the middle class if you don’t have a job.

THE GOVERNMENT’S WAR ON JOBS

Bill Dunkelberg, Chief Economist

National Federation of Independent Business

There is one law that the Supreme Court and Congress cannot fundamentally alter and that is the law of demand: the higher the price of something, the less of it will be taken. Sometimes immediately, sometimes over a longer period as markets and firms adjust. The “price” of something is more than just the “tag price”, it also relates to the difficulty of acquiring it and all related costs. In the case of labor, it’s more than the wage, it’s all the associated search costs, paperwork, employment taxes, training costs and the mandated benefits that determine the cost of an employee.

There is a second important principle: firms cannot pay workers more than the value they bring to the firm (and stay in business). Every time the cost of labor is increased, whether by market forces, or increases in the minimum wage, or mandated family or sick leave, or more labor taxes or paperwork, the hurdle an employee must get over in order to have a job rises. The most damaging impact of a higher minimum wage on our economy is not the increased labor costs, but all the job opportunities that are eliminated forever for young and unskilled workers who want to enter the labor force and become productive workers.

Yet liberals can’t be more proud of all the measures they support, federal, state and local, that raise the cost of entry into employment, including supporting unionization, which is the power to use monopoly power to tax ordinary consumers by raising labor costs, imposing costly work rules, and adding red tape. Yes, auto workers lived very well (and retired well) in the good old days when $1500 in the price of a car went just to fund their medical insurance in addition to the excessive wages paid, all included in the price of the car. So customers paid a heavy tax so the union workers could live well. Competition ended that, GM failed and lives today only with a $10 billion dollar subsidy from taxpayers and continued profit tax breaks engineered by the Obama administration.

Competition has cut much of this “tax” on the customer, and unions now cover only about 7% of the private workforce. Their new “sweet spot” is in the public sector where “profit” is not measured and managers are not accountable for the bottom line. GM failed but your local city or state government is not likely to (although a few have managed even that). Here, 35% of the workers are unionized and often guaranteed jobs (tenure, civil service etc.) and their tactics are the same, inflict pain on the customers until the public sector mangers cave under pressure from constituents (no garbage picked up, schools not in session, buses don’t run etc.). Taxpayers take the hit here as well.

The Liberal’s push for a higher minimum wage is also a “tax” on customers. There is no new income in a market when the minimum wage is raised. Every dollar a minimum wage worker receives comes out of the pockets of customers and owners as prices rise to pass on the costs. Few poor people are helped, most officially poor people don’t work and would find it even harder to get a job at a higher minimum wage. Most of the earnings gains from a higher minimum wage go to families with above median incomes, not the poor. Meantime, job opportunities are destroyed and more and more unskilled and young are denied opportunities to get their first job (and on the job training) and become productive members of the workforce. Only people who don’t “think it through” believe that government wage setting is a good idea. A recent report from Professor Mark Perry at the University of Michigan illustrates the impact of a recently implemented $15 minimum wage in Seattle. You can bet that most of the decline in employment was concentrated among the young and unskilled. And those job positions are lost forever (as long as the minimum wage is at $15 or higher). Now Seattle’s city council is deliberating the setting of work schedules for private sector employees.

war_on_jobs

It is hard to be a member of the “middle class” if you don’t have a job. So, how are all of these “liberal” or “sounds really good”, “fair” policies working? Today, the percentage of the adult population (age 16 and over) with a job is 58%, down from 64% in 2000 (the record high) and 63% in 2007. The percent of workers working part-time that want a full time job is 20%. The black unemployment rate is 11%, 33% for 16-19 year olds. These people aren’t helped by a higher minimum wage, they find it even harder to get a job as it rises. The percent of the population receiving welfare payments is over 25%. Food stamp recipients are at record high levels. The poverty rate is the highest since the early 1990s. Having a job is a much better alternative, for the person and for the good of the country. President Obama wrote recently “Access to a job in the summer and beyond can make all the difference to a young person-..”

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The Net Worth Bubble, Losing Air.

Bill Dunkelberg, Chief Economist

National Federation of Independent Business

 

 

American consumers have about $14 trillion in debt and a net worth of over $80 trillion according to the Federal Reserve. Net worth is the sum of the values of all assets, real and financial, that consumers own, less their debt, including mortgage debt, leases, credit cards and the like. The wealth we hold is a way of storing purchasing power. You can sell your shares of Apple and buy “stuff”, goods and services. Ultimately, for most consumers, that’s what our wealth is used for, to acquire “stuff”. Some of our assets provide services directly such as our houses and cars. The real services received from these assets would seem to be unchanged over time even though their market prices vary.

Consumer Net Worth vs GDP

Financial assets do provide an income that can be used to buy stuff (although interest income was dramatically reduced by Fed policy, dividends held up reasonably well). And part of the goal of Quantitative Easing was to induce people to buy more stuff (real goods and services) as their asset values were inflated by Fed policy. On first blush, not much of this seemed to occur. That said, the total value of our net worth represents a potential claim on stuff, the real output of our economy.

The broadest measure of “stuff” is the Gross Domestic Product, the total value of final goods and services produced in a given period of time. Constructing the ratio of Net Worth to GDP illustrates the fluctuation of claims on output per dollar of output produced. Not surprisingly, this was a fairly steady series for 25 years (maybe longer) from 1970 to the mid-1990s as gains in nominal wealth were matched with gains in nominal output, averaging about $3.50 in claims on output for every $1 of GDP. The advent of the dot.com era (and Y2K) drove the ratio up to $4.40 and then the housing bubble up to $4.80. Real housing services received in that period likely did not rise and fall with house prices. The end of the housing bubble drove the ratio back down to $3.70, a full dollar, but still 20 cents above the 25 year average from 1970 to 1995.

Each peak was followed by a recession, the last one the worst since the early 1980s. And now the ratio has once again reached $4.70. “History” suggests that the ratio will collapse again toward the $3.5 level. This can be accomplished by a massive increase in real GDP (unlikely) or a massive decline in the value of assets (more likely). The economy is not likely to fall into a recession in the next year or two, but growth will be historically modest.

What can impact the market value of assets? The return of “normal” interest rates, weaker profit growth, a serious global slowdown, each could trigger the “adjustment” in net worth. The adjustment might be accelerated because of widespread short covering and record high margin credit and other leverage. Logically this seems unavoidable, unless you believe that we are truly wealthier now, even with an economy that is delivering a rather poor performance (historically weak output and sales growth) in real terms. It would seem to not be “whether” we will adjust but ‘when’ and ‘how’ that will challenge the money managers and prognosticators. Every bubble is different, this one will be about stock prices as well as bond prices, missing in earlier bubbles which occurred during the steady decline in interest rates that started in the early 1980s. This time, rates will likely go up, not down.

 

Since writing this piece last year, central bankers have developed a new tool, NIRP. At 0% or negative rates, there is mathematically no limit to how high bond and equity prices can go. Real earnings can fall while asset prices rise as people put their money into any asset rather than hold cash. Asset prices will rise, yields will fall. Cash will be a “hot potato” that we can’t get rid of. Should the Fed become so disconnected from reality and common sense that it moves to “negative interest rates”, equity markets can rise, at least for a while. Ultimately, the value of “shares” in USA INC will depend on the economy’s real performance.

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Cloud Computing – What can it do for your business?

Cloud Computing concept with businessman drawing with a marker

Cloud Computing – What Can it Do For Your Business?

Originally believed to have been created in the 1960s by Joseph Licklider with his work on the ARPANET and the original Internet, cloud computing has evolved into something much bigger in the 21st century. It’s a term that is thrown around frequently these days. But what is the cloud exactly?  The cloud is simply the internet and it allows you to store, manage, and process data remotely through Internet servers rather than on your own personal computer or local server.  Cloud computing is essentially revolutionizing business models while leveling the playing field between small and large companies.  So what can cloud computing do for your business?

Backup Data Securely

Backing up data is a must in case of a systems failure or other disaster.  With cloud technology, copies of your data are kept off-site in safe locations.  The cloud also enables automated data backup while you work taking one more task off your to-do list. Furthermore, large commercial data centers offering quality certifications offer top-notch protection from security threats that many small businesses can’t provide on their own.

Offer Mobility

Telecommuting is an option that many companies like to offer as a perk or a necessary for getting qualified talent in their business.   With cloud computing, an employee can have access to a virtual mobile office allowing for a flexible and adaptable business. Regardless of where an employee is on the road, collaboration and easy access to data helps keep productivity on track.    PICS ITech has recently started offering Workspace as a Service or WAAS which provides our customers with everything they need to outfit a remote employee.

Lower Costs

Cloud services can help your business save money by reducing the total cost of your infrastructure. Spending less on equipment (such as servers), software licensing and upgrading, as well as utility costs associated with running equipment helps improve profits.   Cloud computing often goes hand in hand with virtualization which minimizes servers sitting idle which is common in single use systems.

Scalability

Cloud computing is able to grow on demand.  Business has cycles and it’s imperative that IT requirements and needs are able to scale up or down depending on what is driving business at that time.  Not having to make expensive changes to your IT environment allows your business to react quickly and efficiently.    Using cloud computing you can add more or less resources with a flip of a switch.

PICS ITech offers many different solutions that at their core are cloud computing.  These include backup and disaster recovery services, Cloud File Sync and Storage, Office 365 and traditional Software as a Service and Website Hosting.  If you would like to know more about what cloud computing can do for your company, please contact us and we would be happy to discuss our services and solutions with you!

 

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[Brazil]: Bahia Airport Modenizations: Barreiras, Lençóis, Teixeira de Freitas, and Irec

Banco do Brasil is planning to release tenders for the modernization of four (4) airports in Barreiras, Lençóis, Teixeira de Freitas, and Irecê in the State of Bahia. The modernization efforts will be based on the recommendations made by IOS Partners, Inc. as part of USTDA-funded Technical Assistance (USTDA 2012-51019). Though information regarding the specific equipment and services to be procured is not yet available, procurements will likely be made for the installation and purchase of equipment and systems including Automated Weather Observing Systems (AWOS), Precision Approach Precision Indicators (PAPI) and lighting systems. U.S. companies interested in the trade lead would be working with the Bahia State Infrastructure Secretariat (SEINFRA), the Brazilian Secretariat of Civil Aviation (SAC) and Banco do Brasil.

Link for more information: Requests for Proposals will be posted on Banco do Brasil’s website (in Portuguese):

http://www.licitacoes-e.com.br/aop/index.jsp

Proposal Deadline: N/A

Point of Contact:

Banco do Brasil – Technical Support (Tenders)
Tel: +55 0800 729 0500



Expressions of Interest Sought for a Regional Electric Interconnection Project between Senegal and Mauritania

The governments of Mauritania and Senegal are seeking expressions of interest for the construction of a 225kV transmission line between Nouakchott and Tobène, to upgrade the connection and increase the transmission capacity between the two countries’ power grids. The proposed line will be capable of carrying up to 250MW. There will be an open international tender for pre-qualified companies. The deadline for expressions of interest for the tender pre-qualification is January 30, 2015 at 9:30 a.m. local time (Dakar).

Background

According to the Agence Française de Développement (AFD), Senelec charges the highest tariffs in the West African Economic and Monetary Union, and relies on significant government subsidies, of €180m ($240m) in 2012 and €120m in 2013. However, restructuring efforts at the utility are beginning to bear fruit, and there are hopes that supply can be improved by the planned 125MW Sendou coal-fired plant, and by imports from Mauritania.

Mauritania has an energy investment plan that includes a 350MW gas-to-power project, a 30MW wind power plant and a 15MW solar project. Development of the Banda gas field has been under discussion for some years, but operator Tullow Oil has recently scaled down its activities in Mauritania following disappointing exploration results, and is planning to bring in one or more partners to reduce its stake to around 30% from 66.83% before reaching a final investment decision.

The latest blow to the development of Banda has come with the withdrawal of miner Kinross Gold Corporation from the Société de Production de l’Electricité à Partir du Gaz special purpose vehicle, whose main shareholder is now state power utility Société Mauritanienne d’Electricité (Somelec). The World Bank approved a guarantee package for the gas to power project in May (AE 279/9). Somelec plans to export some 125MW to Senegal and 50MW to Mali. The existing interconnection can carry only 80MW, so a new high-voltage line is planned to increase capacity.

The total cost of the project is put at some €190m, made up of €80m on the Mauritanian side, €105m in Senegal and €5m for the joint supervision of the works. The Mauritanian element will be wholly financed by the AFD with a loan of €80m. The Senegalese works will be funded with €40m from the AFD, €60m from the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) and a €5.5m grant from the EU-Africa Infrastructure Trust Fund for the oversight element. The governments will meet the costs of compensation payments to affected populations, put at €600,000 for Mauritania and €2m-€8m for Senegal.


The Tender will be divided into four areas:

  • Lot 1 involves the design, supply and installation of a 204km, 225kV line between the Nouakchott Centrale Nord substation and Keur Pèr, along with a 225kV/90kV substation at Béni Nadji and the extension of the existing 225kV Nouakchott substation. This lot will be financed by the AFD.
  • Lot 2 involves the design, supply and installation of a 74km, 225kV line between Keur Pèr and Saint Louis, along with a 225kV/30kV substation at Saint Louis Est, and the extension of the existing 25kV substation at Tobène. This lot will be financed by the AFD.
  • Lot 3 involves a 144km, 225kV line between Saint Louis and Tobène, with financing from the IDB.
  • Lot 4 involves supervision of the works in Lots 1-3. [The call for expressions of interest to determine pre-qualified companies for Lot 4 has already closed.]

The full notice for expressions of interest may be viewed at http://tenders.afd.dgmarket.com/tenders/np-notice.do?noticeId=11700414.


Point of contact: Interested applicants may obtain further information from:

Primary Contact at SENELEC (Senegal):
Name:              Mr. Djili FALL
Address:          Cellule de Passation des Marchés
28, Rue Vincens
DAKAR, Sénégal
Telephone:      +221 33839 31 30
Email:              djily.fall@senelec.sn
Web Site:         http://senelec.sn

For further information/assistance, U.S. companies and their subsidiaries & partners may contact:

Contact (Mauritania): La Société Mauritanienne d’Electricité (SOMELEC)
Address:          47, Avenue de l’Indépendance
BP 355 Nouakchott
République Islamique de Mauritanie
Fax:                 +222 45 25 39 95
Email:             lignehtmrsn@somelec.mr
Contact:          Le Conseiller du Directeur Général chargé des marches (Advisor to the Director General of Markets) ou le Directeur d’Exécution des Projets (Director of Project Implementation)

Contact (Senegal):  La Société d’Electricité du Sénégal (SENELEC)
Address:          28, rue Vincens
BP 93 Dakar
République du Sénégal

Fax:                 +221 823.12.67
Email:             lignehtmrsn@senelec.sn
Contact:          Le Directeur de l’équipement et de l’environnement (Director of Equipment & Environment)

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(Senegal and Mauritania) Transmission Line Construction

Expressions of Interest Sought for a Regional Electric Interconnection Project between Senegal and Mauritania

The governments of Mauritania and Senegal are seeking expressions of interest for the construction of a 225kV transmission line between Nouakchott and Tobène, to upgrade the connection and increase the transmission capacity between the two countries’ power grids. The proposed line will be capable of carrying up to 250MW. There will be an open international tender for pre-qualified companies. The deadline for expressions of interest for the tender pre-qualification is January 30, 2015 at 9:30 a.m. local time (Dakar).

Background

According to the Agence Française de Développement (AFD), Senelec charges the highest tariffs in the West African Economic and Monetary Union, and relies on significant government subsidies, of €180m ($240m) in 2012 and €120m in 2013. However, restructuring efforts at the utility are beginning to bear fruit, and there are hopes that supply can be improved by the planned 125MW Sendou coal-fired plant, and by imports from Mauritania.

Mauritania has an energy investment plan that includes a 350MW gas-to-power project, a 30MW wind power plant and a 15MW solar project. Development of the Banda gas field has been under discussion for some years, but operator Tullow Oil has recently scaled down its activities in Mauritania following disappointing exploration results, and is planning to bring in one or more partners to reduce its stake to around 30% from 66.83% before reaching a final investment decision.

The latest blow to the development of Banda has come with the withdrawal of miner Kinross Gold Corporation from the Société de Production de l’Electricité à Partir du Gaz special purpose vehicle, whose main shareholder is now state power utility Société Mauritanienne d’Electricité (Somelec). The World Bank approved a guarantee package for the gas to power project in May (AE 279/9). Somelec plans to export some 125MW to Senegal and 50MW to Mali. The existing interconnection can carry only 80MW, so a new high-voltage line is planned to increase capacity.

The total cost of the project is put at some €190m, made up of €80m on the Mauritanian side, €105m in Senegal and €5m for the joint supervision of the works. The Mauritanian element will be wholly financed by the AFD with a loan of €80m. The Senegalese works will be funded with €40m from the AFD, €60m from the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) and a €5.5m grant from the EU-Africa Infrastructure Trust Fund for the oversight element. The governments will meet the costs of compensation payments to affected populations, put at €600,000 for Mauritania and €2m-€8m for Senegal.

The Tender will be divided into four areas:

  • Lot 1 involves the design, supply and installation of a 204km, 225kV line between the Nouakchott Centrale Nord substation and Keur Pèr, along with a 225kV/90kV substation at Béni Nadji and the extension of the existing 225kV Nouakchott substation. This lot will be financed by the AFD.
  • Lot 2 involves the design, supply and installation of a 74km, 225kV line between Keur Pèr and Saint Louis, along with a 225kV/30kV substation at Saint Louis Est, and the extension of the existing 25kV substation at Tobène. This lot will be financed by the AFD.
  • Lot 3 involves a 144km, 225kV line between Saint Louis and Tobène, with financing from the IDB.
  • Lot 4 involves supervision of the works in Lots 1-3. [The call for expressions of interest to determine pre-qualified companies for Lot 4 has already closed.]

The full notice for expressions of interest may be viewed at http://tenders.afd.dgmarket.com/tenders/np-notice.do?noticeId=11700414.

Point of contact: Interested applicants may obtain further information from:

Primary Contact at SENELEC (Senegal):
Name:              Mr. Djili FALL
Address:          Cellule de Passation des Marchés
28, Rue Vincens
DAKAR, Sénégal
Telephone:      +221 33839 31 30
Email:              djily.fall@senelec.sn
Web Site:         http://senelec.sn

For further information/assistance, U.S. companies and their subsidiaries & partners may contact:

Contact (Mauritania): La Société Mauritanienne d’Electricité (SOMELEC)
Address:          47, Avenue de l’Indépendance
BP 355 Nouakchott
République Islamique de Mauritanie
Fax:                 +222 45 25 39 95
Email:             lignehtmrsn@somelec.mr
Contact:          Le Conseiller du Directeur Général chargé des marches (Advisor to the Director General of Markets) ou le Directeur d’Exécution des Projets (Director of Project Implementation)

Contact (Senegal):  La Société d’Electricité du Sénégal (SENELEC)
Address:          28, rue Vincens
BP 93 Dakar
République du Sénégal

Fax:                 +221 823.12.67
Email:             lignehtmrsn@senelec.sn
Contact:          Le Directeur de l’équipement et de l’environnement (Director of Equipment & Environment)

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(Rwanda) Rwaza I & II Hydropower Projects

Background: A USTDA grant to Rwandan energy developer DC HydroPower Ltd (Grantee) is funding Technical Assistance to support the company’s plans to develop two small run-of-the-river hydropower plants on the Mukungwa River in Rwanda’s northwest Musanze District (Project). The Project includes two hydropower plants, Rwaza I and Rwaza II, which would generate 2.6 Megawatts (MW) and 1.0 MW, respectively.  The Project is intended to increase power generation capacity for the Musanze District.

The projected timeline for construction is 18 months, with construction estimated to begin in October 2015. Equipment and services that will be needed for Project implementation include, but are not limited to:

  • Construction of the following components:
  • Diversion weir with intake
  • Trash rack
  • Sediment trap
  • 1.5 km of a 5m wide by 2m depth channel
  • Powerhouse (including installation of turbine & generator)
  • Maintenance building
  • Electrical switch yard
  • Forebay and penstock
  • 1 km access roadway
  • 30kv transmission line (8 km long to existing 110 kv line)
  • Pre-fabricated bridge structure and abutments

 

These facilities will be constructed at each of the sites, except for the maintenance building which will be a shared facility.

Point of Contact:

For more information about this Project and how your company can participate, please contact Pete Hemingway with Ritoch-Powell & Associates via email at phemingway@ritochpowell.com.

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(Turkey) EPC Contract for 70MW Waste-to-Energy (WTE) Facility

Brief Background: In 2010, USTDA provided funding for a Feasibility Study (FS) for the construction of a solid Waste-to-Energy (WTE) plant for the Istanbul Environmental Management Industry and Trading Company A.S. (ISTAC). This WTE plant will help to reduce the volume of municipal solid waste (MSW) at the Odayeri Landfill. Potential U.S. exports for this project could reach $45 million and include deionization and reverse osmosis systems, steam turbines, electric generators, condensers, feed water and condensate pumps, plant control systems, motor control centers, and switchgears. The Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality (IBB) (under which ISTAC is 100% incorporated) will make EPC and consultancy contractor selections through a tender commission. ISTAC will also be involved throughout the tendering process.

A previous tender was issued but later cancelled for financial reasons. The retendering will likely be announced in June or July 2015. After announcement, interested companies will have one month to prepare the necessary documents for prequalification.

Link for more information: Interested companies should monitor www.ibb.gov.tr, the Municipality website for tender selection.

Proposal Deadline: Deadline TBD. Tender will be announced in June or July 2015.

Point of Contact:  Contact Information can be found at the IBB website.

U.S. Embassy Contacts:
Serdar Ҫetinkaya
Deputy Commercial Attache & Energy Sector Lead
serdar.cetinkaya@trade.gov
[90] (312) 455-7193

Ebru Olcay
Commercial Specialist
U.S. Consulate, Istanbul
Ebru.Olcay@trade.gov

[90] (212) 335-9040


 

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