As of today, the Croatian National Tourist Board has an open office of the Representative Office in Shanghai, which will cover the large and strategically important Chinese market for Croatian tourism.The new office aims to attract even more Chinese guests, introduce direct airlines between China and Croatia, and develop an offer tailored to Chinese tourists. “China is the world’s largest market in every respect, and this fact is the biggest challenge for us, as a relatively small European country. However, I am sure of the excellent results we will achieve in the future because the Croatian tourist offer contains everything that Chinese tourists like to consume the most, and that is the rich cultural and historical heritage, preserved nature and quality eno-gastronomy.”, said Franka Gulin, director of the newly established CNTB office in Shanghai.The director of the CNTB, Kristjan Staničić, emphasized that due to cost savings and future stronger institutional cooperation, the office of the CNTB Representative Office will open in the premises of the Croatian Chamber of Commerce Representative Office in Shanghai. “We are extremely proud to open an office in Shanghai in the year that has been declared the year of tourism of the European Union and China. It is the right time to start in this large and important market with an even stronger positioning of our country as an attractive year-round tourist destination. Namely, only this year we are recording a growth in the turnover of Chinese guests of 40 percent, and there is room for even better results. Croatia has yet to take a strong market position in China, potentials exist, which is confirmed by the award of the renowned magazine Travel + Leisure, which declared our country the most desirable new European destination for Chinese tourists this year”, said the director of the CNTB, Kristjan Staničić.During the first ten months of this year, 216.000 arrivals and 315.000 overnight stays were made from the Chinese market, which is an increase of 43 percent in arrivals and 42 percent in overnight stays compared to the same period last year. Chinese tourists spent the most nights in Zagreb, Dubrovnik, Split and Zadar. Chinese tourists are interesting from the position of affirmation of the period before and after the season because they make the most arrivals in October (18%) and June (16%), followed by May (14%) and September (14%). The largest number of Chinese tourists come to Croatia in an organized manner, most often as part of a regional tour, and more than 66% of Chinese tourist nights are spent in hotels, while approximately 24% stay in households. On average, they stay at destinations for a very short time and change their place of residence several times. When we talk about the motives of arrival, sightseeing is the most important motive for travel (73%), followed by gastronomy (64%).See the profile of China’s emitting market here
Aston Villa are in the process of discussing a new deal with manager Paul Lambert, according to reports. Gerard Houllier and then Alex McLeish unsuccessfully took the helm prior to Lambert’s appointment, with the latter since having built a good rapport with both Lerner and Faulkner. The 44-year-old Scot has been given money to spend, although has had to cut his cloth more accordingly, which has resulted in the exit of a number of high-wage earners. Many Villa fans, however, remain unconvinced because – although Lambert just kept the club in the Barclays Premier League last season – there have been some shocking results. Most notable amongst them was the 8-0 hammering at Chelsea, plus the Capital One Cup semi-final embarrassment to Bradford last term. This season Villa’s wretched home form has been a major cause for concern, including another humiliating defeat just a month ago to Sheffield United in the FA Cup. But then Villa have also taken some notable scalps, such as those of Arsenal and Manchester City, whilst crucially beating West Brom last week in the Midlands derby. Given the amicable nature between Lambert, Lerner and Faulkner, the situation is understood to be an amicable one, with no pressure on any party. Villa chief executive Paul Faulkner is understood to have opened talks with Lambert, who is currently in the middle of a three-year contract he signed following his arrival from Norwich in the summer of 2012. Faulkner and owner Randy Lerner are determined to bring stability to Villa following a turbulent period that came after Martin O’Neill’s departure two years previously. Press Association
One of the best BiH sportsmen in the last 20 years, handball goalkeeper Enid Tahirović, played his last match last night.Last minutes of his career he played wearing the colours of Goppingen, who lost on a guest match with Lemgo.Tahirović started his career in his hometown of Bijeljina, but he moved to Tuzla during the war and played for Sloboda, and afterwards he played for many other clubs.In 2006 he was proclaimed the best sportsman in BiH by the choice of Nezavisne Novine, and in the same year the Sport Federation of BiH gave him ”Mirza Delibašić” award.Although he received many awards during his career, his unfulfilled wish was to participate on an important competition with BiH team.
A youth group named, Youth Organized for the Promotion of Good Governance (YOPGG), has honored Foreign Minister, Augustine Ngafuan, as Minister of the Year for what they described as his pivotal and impactful role during the height of the Ebola epidemic in Liberia.The Secretary General of the group, speaking on behalf of his colleagues, noted that the decision honor Minister Ngafuan is in recognition of the pivotal role he played in not just rallying the international community to Liberia’s aid but also because of his strong advocacy for his country and compatriots during the height of the Ebola crisis. SG Williams, presenting the certificate, noted that the Minister was the voice of Liberia in the international community when Liberians were being stigmatized because of the Ebola virus.”When Liberia was so troubled, and most of our friends including some of our African brothers were rejecting us because the Ebola disease had befallen our country, we can recall that Minster Ngafuan was the voice of Liberia in the international community”, Williams said.Reflecting on Minister Ngafuan’s presentation and impact at the recent United Nations General Assembly, Williams recalled, “We remember, Minister Ngafuan particularly at the United Nations General Assembly presenting the case for Liberia, ensuring that millions of dollars in cash, kind and in human capacity came to the rescue of this country.And we can proudly say that his intervention, along with his team at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, into the Liberian situation has played a very key role in our country and remains indelible in the minds of Liberian youth, nurses, doctors, and the health workers”.The organization says it views President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s continuous confidence in the Foreign Minister as an inspiration to the young people.The group held a moment of silence for Liberians, especially young people who lost their lives to the Ebola virus.Minister Ngafuan, in his response, described the day as a great day in his personal life and that of the Foreign Ministry. The Liberian chief diplomat underscored that public servants should proceed with their work without any expectation of an honor, but stressed that when honor comes, it should be appreciated. “To note that you have been evaluating us for the past 12 months and that your judgment is one of commendation, we are grateful. Civil society organizations often condemn officials of government when we do condemnable things. It is good to see you commending an official of government for what you consider commendable deeds”, Minister Ngafuan stated.The Foreign Minister stated that he was dedicating the honor first and foremost to all Liberians whom called the real masters: President Sirleaf, for her leadership and guidance in the Ebola fight and the entire Ministry of Foreign Affairs family whom he described as real giants whose contributions were critical to his success.He also dedicated the honor to the memory of the late Mrs. Sharon Washington, his Administrative Assistant who died during the height of the Ebola crisis: “I dedicate this honor to her memory for her dedicated service to the Ministry and the country for almost 20 years.”He then gave the assurance that the Foreign Ministry will commit itself to working hard to do its part in contributing to the Government’s agenda. “So, you have given us more reasons why we should work for the Liberian people. You have given us a charge for this New Year. You have given us gasoline for our tanks for the New Year.”YOPGG, a peace-building civil society organization, honored the Foreign Minister yesterday at his Foreign Ministry office.The organization was founded in 2010. It speaks out against excesses in the society as Liberia strives to strengthen its democracy and recovery process.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
In the 25 years that Sporting Chance has been in existence, it has worked with about 170 000 and even helped unearth exceptional sporting talent. (Images: Shamin Chibba)Sporting Chance, as the name suggests, is a sports development agency that gives children from disadvantaged backgrounds the opportunity to participate in sport while also receiving a physical education.One of the organisation’s more important goals was to instil an active life pattern, said founder and managing director Brad Bing. He was speaking at a Play Your Part Rugby Activation held at Khayelitsha Rugby Stadium in Cape Town on 2 October. “What you need is to create life patterns by the age of 12. You don’t just wake up on your 14th birthday and say, ‘Tomorrow I’m going to play squash.’ Your kids are going to grow up following that and that’s the culture we need to have.”Sporting Chance helped Play Your Part facilitate the activation in Khayelitsha, bringing along rugby coaches and experts to train the children.With calypso cricket and street soccer programmes their mainstay, Sporting Chance is taking sport to the children. “Basically we never make plans. All we do is facilitate the opportunity and these kids have got to grab the opportunity themselves,” said Bing.Bing himself has been active all his life. He played cricket professionally for Western Province in the late 1980s and played in England for 10 years. After he retired, he returned to South Africa with the idea of getting children outside and playing sport.“I came back with international ideas to South Africa and if you remember correctly in the 1980s it was the height of apartheid and the height of the struggle. Not many people understood the ideas I was talking about. Out of pure frustration, in September 1990 I said: ‘That’s it, I’m going to start my own company.’”And 25 years later, the organisation is still moving strongly. It has worked with about 170 000 children, some of whom have gone on to represent South Africa at the highest level. According to Bing, these include six members of the national men’s hockey side and cricket player Herschelle Gibbs.However, he insists that the organisation’s job is not to produce international level talent but to get children to play sport, lead a healthy lifestyle and receive mentorship from experienced coaches.Play Your Part worked with Sporting Chance coaches to run the rugby activation in Khayelitsha, Cape Town. MENTORSHIP IS CRUCIALBing’s cricket career would not have bloomed had he not received mentorship from teachers, coaches, fellow players and his father. “On a Saturday morning, when my dad or my mom took me to play cricket, they sat there and watched me. And my father would say to me: ‘You made this mistake or that mistake.’ These kids don’t have that. In our townships, those parents only come back at night and those kids get fed and put into bed so where does the mentorship come about?”When a budding athlete from a disadvantaged background lacked mentorship, he added, it was difficult to progress through the ranks. “That’s the obstacle we have to get around. You’ll always see our township [children] struggling and that is the bridge we have to cross in order to make sure that South Africa really becomes a powerhouse in sport.“If I was formerly disadvantaged I would still be toyi-toying outside the Department of Sport and Recreation’s office not because I want to be a rebel but because I want more access to facilities.” By having the sports facilities and equipment at their disposal, Brad Bing believes children from disadvantaged areas like Khayelitsha can realise their potential not just as athletes but as good people too.LACK OF ACCESSSporting Chance sees itself as a business that gives communities access to sports, coaches and facilities. “We run coaching programmes as well regardless of the type of sport it is in that community.”At the rugby activation in Khayelitsha, Bing said that though there were facilities in the area, they were not maintained. “We have a rugby facility here but with all due respect you look at the clubhouse… You’ve got the poles here but you don’t see the field markings and if the fields are not marked are you telling me that rugby is actually played on a daily basis… most of those people are out there working, when do they have time to make the club work?” Bing asked.“So we are talking about rugby but where are the squash courts and the tennis courts? There are cricket facilities that haven’t been maintained. How are we going to produce black cricket in communities?”In addition, although the facility was there, residents did not have access to equipment. “We fully know that if we leave equipment here we won’t find it tomorrow so you need someone to lead that facility and make sure it’s secure.”There is also no access to professional and structured coaching. At the rugby activation, former Springboks Sevens player Mpho Mbiyozo and Sporting Chance coaches were on hand to teach children from the township about rugby and life.However, Bing said such events took place once; training programmes should be ongoing. “Believe me, in a population as big as Khayelitsha where you have got half-a-million people, you can have 400 to 500 kids coming here at any time.”Mbiyozo agreed, saying: “It ends here today, and when they go home and they’re all happy. This event is a seed but we need to water it to germinate.”
South Africa’s film and television makers are urged to submit their entries to the South African Film and Television Awards (SAFTAs) before the closing date on 16 October 2017. You could be the next to join the list of winners, so enter now and show us what you have got.The 2018 South African Film and Television Awards could be your chance to prove your mettle and pit yourself against the best filmmakers in the country. Submit your entry and show us what you have got. (Image: South African Film and Television Awards)Brand South Africa reporterThe 12th edition of the South African Film and Television Awards (SAFTAs), brought to you by Mc Café, is nearly upon us, and the call for entries is open to South African filmmakers to pit their products against the best the country has to offer.Filmmakers are urged to submit their entries on www.saftasonline.co.za before the clock strikes on 16 October 2017.The SAFTAs are managed under the National Film and Video Foundation (NFVF), an agency that falls under the Department of Arts and Culture.The awards play an important role in the growth, development and transformation of South Africa’s film industry, giving recognition and reward for creativity, quality and filmmaking excellence.The SAFTAs also serve to encourage entrepreneurship and the development of new talent within the industry, feeding the aspirations of young filmmakers, actors and actresses.For more than a decade some of South Africa’s best films, television shows, actors and actresses have been on the SAFTAs stage, showcasing the creative genius working its magic on our screens. Now in their 12th year, the awards promise to be bigger and better than ever before, fuelling the passion of the local industry.“If you don’t buy a ticket, you can’t win the raffle.” You could be the next to join the list of awards winners, so enter now and show us what you have got.SAFTAs 2018: changing with the timesThe SAFTA committee is made up of the countries film and television giants SABC, DStv, eTV and StarSat as well as the Cultural and Creative Industries Federation of South Africa (CCIFSA) and the South African Screen Federation (Sasfed).True to the spirit of development and growth, the SAFTAs have been modified to improve the experience and keep it relevant.“It is crucial after each edition of the SAFTAs to introspect and seek possible ways to modify the awards for continuous improvement,” said Zama Mkosi, CEO of the NFVF.“Following the SAFTAs, 11 post review meetings with the Adhoc and SAFTAs committees, the categories were workshopped and reduced. The objective is to create consistency and uniformity that reflects the South African film and television industry.”The total number of awards has been reduced to 80 plus four discretionary awards, totalling 84 awards up for grabs. The awards ceremony is set to take place between 22 and 24 March 2018.Send in your submission and you could be up on the SAFTAs stage come March next year.Source: National Film and Video Foundation, South African Film and Television AwardsWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.
Unhappy with the functioning of Chief Minister Mukul Sangma, at least two senior leaders of the ruling Congress in Meghalaya today openly said they would quit the party before the Assembly election due next year.Senior leaders such as former deputy chief minister Rowell Lyngdoh and former cabinet minister Prestone Tynsong decided to leave Congress.“I have the intention of joining the NPP as the Congress’ ticket on which I was elected had betrayed me and the people,” Rowell Lyngdoh told PTI.Claiming that he and his ‘friends’ were ignored by the chief minister, he said they would resign from Congress and join the NPP the moment the elections are announced.Mr. Tynsong said, “I am not happy with the way the chief minister functions as a leader. I will resign very soon, may be before the last session under the present government.”The tenure of the current Assembly expires on March 6 next year.Sources in the Congress said there were at least three more MLAs who would not contest the next Assembly polls on party tickets.Mr. Lyngdoh, Mr. Tynsong and the other three MLAs have been removed from their positions in the party or the government this year.The BJP state leaders have said the party welcomes any person who is willing to work for development of the state and is ready to root out corruption in Meghalaya.
The general cargo vessel Muros ran aground some 8 miles off the Norfolk Coast, near Happisburgh Sands, in the morning hours of December 3, according to UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency.Following the incident, the authorities informed that the integrity of the Spain-flagged vessel is sound and that there “is no need for concern but we are monitoring the situation closely.”At the time of the grounding, the 89-metre-long cargo ship was crewed by nine people. There were no injuries reported to the crew.“At this stage the vessel’s master is seeking to get assistance from a tug to refloat the vessel,” Maritime and Coastguard Agency earlier said.According to AIS data provided by MarineTraffic, Muros was on its way from UK’s port of Tees to Port of Rochefort, France, when it ran into trouble.
Login/Register With: Advertisement Twitter Ryan Reynolds and Céline Dion, about whom the Deadpool 2 star cannot stop gushing. (Hector Retamal/ Patrick Kovarik/AFP/Getty Images) Asked by France’s Canal+ how he felt upon learning that Dion would be on the Deadpool 2 soundtrack, Reynolds said, “I lost my mind. I was the most excited human being ever.”The French network’s Boîte à questions also asked him to do an impression of Dion singing her new song. You’d think this would be easy for Reynolds, seeing as he — or, if you’re less credulous, someone else wearing the Deadpool suit — danced around her in the music video. But instead of Ashes, he delivered a stirring performance of her ballad from the movie Titanic.Therein lies the essential truth of the human condition: We are all just waiting for a chance to belt a few lines from My Heart Will Go On. Stars: They’re just like us.When we last checked in on Ryan Reynolds, he was bantering with Céline Dion at the conclusion of her music video for Ashes.Nearly two weeks have passed and the Deadpool star still can’t stop talking about Céline Dion. Can you blame him? LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Facebook Advertisement Advertisement