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CN announces $305-million investment in Alberta – Lethbridge News Now



CN notes that moving freight by rail instead of by truck reduces GHG emissions by 75 percent.

CN will also invest in safety-enhancing technologies including the Autonomous Track Inspection Program, and Automated Inspection Portals.

One of the planned projects includes the construction of approximately five miles of double track between Vancouver and Edmonton, near Hinton.

Highlights of the maintenance program include:

· Replacement of about 71 miles of rail

· Installation of over 210-,000 new railroad ties

· Rebuilds of 28 road crossing surfaces

· Maintenance work on bridges, culverts, signal systems and other track infrastructure

“As our province recovers from COVID-19, investments to support our supply chain are more important than ever. By focusing on safety to support Alberta’s economic recovery, CN is ensuring Albertans get the everyday goods they need,” stated Alberta’s Minister of Transportation Ric McIver.

“We take our essential role in the North American economy seriously and these investments in Alberta are a key part of our strategy to support growth. The Company remains committed to help enable supply chains that fuel Alberta’s growth as we are a critical part of getting everyday goods to markets and consumers,” said James Thompson, vice-president, western region at CN.

“Safety is a core value at CN and by investing in the maintenance and expansion of our track and capacity, we are providing customers with a safe and reliable solution at a time when fluid supply chains are more critical than ever.”

CN employs approximately 2,891 employees in Alberta.

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Comment: Now more than ever, investment in people reaps more than ever – Accountancy Age



As public spending soars to more than £190bn, over nine million workers have used the furlough scheme and the global economy takes a £7.7trn hit, it is undeniable that the global coronavirus pandemic has generated some eye-watering numbers.

In the UK, the establishment of the UK furlough scheme has been at the forefront of those figures. Created by the government earlier in the year to assist organisations and employees through a challenging period of instability, these measures have been costly, but essential for the UK economy and those that make it work.

When furlough was put in place, the future of many companies was on a knife-edge as lockdown instructions were issued. As a result, millions of jobs were in severe danger. If not for furlough, a wave of redundancies would have seen the numbers claiming unemployment aid soar even higher. It would have been catastrophic.

But time has moved on since March, and, now that there are signs of economic recovery, the current furlough scheme is ending and the Job Support Scheme will replace it. This means employers have to pay 55 percent of pay, while the government pays for 22 percent. This is a significant increase, but very few expected the furlough scheme to continue in its current form, even as we step into a second wave.

Debate rages at decision time for furlough

With the nominated end to the furlough support coming into view, influential stakeholders from unions to employer representatives had been asking the Chancellor to reconsider its imminent closure. There is a significant contingent urging the UK to follow the route of countries such as Germany, which have decided to keep business support measures in place into 2021.

Many believe that without a scheme as bold as furlough, employment rates will fall off a cliff edge, leaving millions without work. The argument is that a continuation of the furlough scheme or another method such as the Job Support Scheme, would help not only stimulate the economy but avoid a significant credit default on personal debt that could run into the billions.

But there is another argument for this support to continue – the mental health of UK workers.

The price and profit of wellbeing

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) says that since the start of the pandemic the nation’s mental wellbeing has plummeted as health, employment and personal finance worries have strangled optimism.

Increased levels of depression, anxiety and loneliness are all on the rise, and employees are struggling to cope with social distancing measures, remote working, and childcare issues.  The unseen financial impact of this worrying scenario needs to be considered by the politicians deciding whether to withdraw help such as the furlough scheme in the current circumstances.

In-depth analysis carried out for our Divided Together report points to the danger of ignoring workplace mental health issues. The research highlighted that 43 percent of all workers are worried about job security and this, combined with other factors, is having a detrimental impact on mental health.

Over 50 percent say they have seen their mental health deteriorate since the crisis began – a figure that increases to 55 percent for employees who are trying to juggle children and work responsibilities from home and 66 percent for furloughed parents.

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Treating employee wellbeing seriously

Many companies have already reacted to this growing issue and are positioning employee wellbeing at the top of their business priorities.

A third (35 percent) of HR leaders across sectors in the UK we spoke to say they had increased their wellbeing budget recently, and the same portion are planning to invest in the coming months. While the average wellbeing spend per head is now at £150 a year, there is a significant minority of organisations (14 percent) investing more than £2,000 per year, per person, in the wellbeing of their employees.

This is a repeat of a trend we have seen in previous testing times.

During the banking crisis of 2008, the number of businesses creating wellbeing strategies increased. In a recent study by the London School of Economics, improving wellbeing was found to boost employee productivity, satisfaction and retention within a company – all directly linked to business performance.

Our own research has found that 74% of HR leaders attribute greater physical health and wellbeing to a fall in absence. With the average UK company employing 150 people spending £120,000 a year on absence, this is an area business cannot afford to ignore. However, when combined with presenteeism – a growing issue where employees are working but not happy and struggling to concentrate – the cost to the UK economy is £81bn a year, according to Cambridge University.

Applying the company findings to the country

These figures suggest that businesses recognise that the mental wellbeing of their employees is directly related to their performance. Those that have found a way to improve employee wellbeing have seen better retention, satisfaction and performance. It is these learnings that should also have been considered when weighing up whether to continue support for UK employees after the initial furlough period ends. The new system didn’t have to be a continuation of furlough, but it needed to have wellbeing in mind.

From our research and countless other studies, investing in people goes far beyond investing in salaries. Yes, the jobs are important and mere job security for those nine million who have been on furlough will go a long way to easing mental stresses, but if this pandemic has taught us anything, it’s that as businesses, countries and a global community, our health is our wealth. Acknowledging and investing in our mental as well as fiscal rehabilitation will help secure a sustained recovery that is vital to rebuilding business for the future.

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Emirex Exchange Receives Investment from Alpha Sigma Capital The capital will assist in the growth and expansion of Emirex in the MENA region including new products in DeFi industry – Financial Post



Dubai, Oct. 01, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — (via Blockchain Wire)  Alpha Sigma Capital (ASC), a pioneering digital asset fund investing in emerging cryptocurrencies and blockchain companies invested in the Emirex Exchange this week. Enzo Villani, CEO and Chief Investment Officer of Alpha Sigma Capital and strategist for crypto and traditional exchanges such as OKEx and Nasdaq was appointed to the Emirex Advisory Board.

Founded in 2019, Emirex exchange operates in the Middle East and Asian markets with headquarters in Dubai. The company’s mission is to develop infrastructure that creates a new digital economy linking these markets with Africa, Europe, and eventually the United States. 

The exchange has grown to over 100,000 registered users with over 30,000 active traders from around the world. There over 150,000 subscribers among social networks and over 50 trading pairs listed and available on the exchange. 

Kirill Mishanin, CSO of Emirex commented, “Alpha Sigma Capital’s partnership with Emriex comes at a key time for the company. Emirex has entered a new strategic growth phase of bringing VCs, Angel Investors, and strategic partners to the MENA market that requires leadership with extensive blockchain development experience. In order to continue to capitalize on the opportunities ahead, and continue our DeFi growth in the MENA region, we are very pleased to have attracted Enzo Villani as a key strategic advisor.”

“Emirex’s leadership and the team have extensive experience in enterprise technology, blockchain, and financial markets. We’re excited to be aligned with our partners in the MENA region and plan to leverage our exchange experience to realize the vision and deliver for our customers.”, commented Enzo Villani, CEO and Chief Investment Officer of Alpha Sigma Capital.

Emirex Expansion

Currently, Emirex is on the last step before the launch of DeFi aggregator platform EmiFlex which combines multiple DeFi solutions, including loans, borrowing, staking, decentralized exchange, insurance, and mining and allows users to get maximum results in a few simple steps.

EmiFlex benefits:

  • Provides its users with one the highest interest rates on the market
  • Combination of the most profitable DeFi services
  • Adaptive and automated management system based on a decentralized approach

Moreover, a part of the Emirex team takes an active part in the decentralised community developing an AMM DEX EmiSwap. EmiSwap is a fork of the Mooniswap decentralized exchange and was created in order to solve the current problems of the DeFi industry. EmiSwap is an open-source project with decentralized governance and several internal coins – ESW and ESD.

  • ESW – is a governance and voting token, that gives the right to receive a share of trading fees in proportion to the share of ownership and rights to participate in the voting procedure.
  • ESD – is a token that gives rights to receive assets in the basket of the yield pool denominated in DAI in proportion to the share of ESW token ownership.

About Emirex

Emirex exchange operates in the Middle East and Asian markets with headquarters in Dubai. In a broader sense, the company’s mission is to develop infrastructure that creates a new digital economy linking these markets with Africa and Europe. 

About Alpha Sigma Capital

Alpha Sigma Capital (ASC) is an investment fund focused on emerging blockchain companies that are successfully building their user-base, demonstrating real-world uses for their decentralized ecosystems, and moving blockchain technology towards mass-adoption. ASC is focused on companies leveraging blockchain technology to provide value-add in areas such as fintech, AI, supply chain, and healthcare. 

Disclaimer: This press release is for informational purposes only. The information does not constitute investment advice or an offer to invest. Tokens and virtual currencies, in general, are not legal tender, in any country, and are not backed by any government as legal tender, nor should they be treated as such.


Sandra Ditore

Partner, Administration and Investor Relations

Alpha Sigma Capital


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Artis Real Estate Investment Trust Announces Receipt of Requisition – Canada NewsWire



WINNIPEG, MB, Oct. 01, 2020  /CNW/ – Artis Real Estate Investment Trust (“Artis” or the “REIT”) (TSX: AX.UN) announced today that its board of trustees (the “Board”) received a unitholder requisition on September 30, 2020 requesting the REIT call a special meeting of the REIT’s unitholders for the purpose of reconstituting the Board with five new trustees.

The unitholders making the requisition, Sandpiper Group and its affiliates, have advised the REIT that it is the holder of not less than five percent (5%) of the Units.

The Board is reviewing and considering the requisition with its professional advisors.  It will respond appropriately in due course. In the meantime, there is no need for unitholders of the REIT to take any action.


Artis is a diversified Canadian real estate investment trust investing primarily in office and industrial properties. Since 2004, Artis has executed an aggressive but disciplined growth strategy, building a portfolio of commercial properties in select markets in Canada and the United States. As of June 30, 2020, Artis’ commercial property comprises approximately 23.8 million square feet of leasable area.

The Toronto Stock Exchange has not reviewed and does not accept responsibility for the adequacy
or accuracy of this press release

SOURCE Artis Real Estate Investment Trust

For further information: Mr. Armin Martens, President and Chief Executive Officer; Mr. Jim Green, Chief Financial Officer or Ms. Heather Nikkel, Vice-President – Investor Relations of the REIT at 1.204.947.1250

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