MCC Board Approves $ 450 million Aid for Morocco

Taroudant – The Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) Board approved on Thursday in Washington a second financial aid package for Morocco worth $ 450 million, said a statement from the MCC.Under the Compact, approved at the quarterly meeting of the MCC, Morocco will benefit from this financial assistance to develop an open economy, to increase productivity and improve employment in high-growth sectors like fruit tree productivity, fisheries and artisan crafts.According to the MCC Board, the $450 million Employability and Land Compact “will support two Moroccan Government priorities: high-quality education and land productivity.” “An employability project is designed to improve the quality, relevance and equitable access of secondary education and vocational skills training; and a land project will help rural and industrial land markets better respond to investor demand, and modernize property rights policies,” explains the MCC Board.“The Government of Morocco has demonstrated a strong commitment to the reforms outlined in our compact, and we look forward to together creating opportunity for the Moroccan people,” MCC CEO Dana J. Hyde.This new compact comes after the successful completion of Morocco’s first compact in September 2013.Created by the U.S. Congress in January 2004, the Millennium Challenge Corporation is an innovative and independent U.S. agency that is working to reduce global poverty through economic growth. read more

Transcontinental profits plunge despite higher revenues

MONTREAL — Transcontinental’s profits plummeted to $8.1-million in the third quarter as soft national advertising outside Quebec, lower educational book sales and costs related to its acquisition of Quad/Graphics Canada hurt the bottom line.The Montreal-based media company and printer said Thursday that it earned 10 cents per share for the period ended July 31. That compared to 39 cents per share a year earlier when net income was $31.5-million.Adjusting for one-time items, profits dropped 23% to $24.9-million or 31 cents per share, compared with $32.5-million or 40 cents per share in the year-ago period.Revenues were $517-million, up 8% from $479.4-million due to the acquisitions of Quad/Graphics and Redux Media, new printing contracts and community newspaper launches in Quebec.The increase was partially offset by reduced educational book sales following the end of school reform in Quebec, printing contract incentives and lower community newspaper ad revenues.Organic revenues fell by three per cent, but were down 9.5% in the media sector, with about 45 % of the drop due to the impact of school reform last year.“The third quarter results demonstrate the resilience of our printing operations and the adverse impact of difficult market conditions on some niches in the media sector,” said president and CEO Francois Olivier.He said the company is on track to generate more than $40-million in synergies over the next 18 months from the acquisition of Quad/Graphics’ Canadian plants that once belonged to Quebecor World.Drew McReynolds of RBC Capital Markets said the results were below expectations, with adjusted EPS falling below his estimate of 45 cents per share.“Not unlike other media companies in calendar second quarter, the remaining decline was due to weak national advertising spending in newspaper publishing and year-over-year declines in digital revenue,” he wrote in a report.McReynolds said the printing results largely in line, with organic revenues up one per cent mainly due to new book and flyer contracts.The analyst said the loss of Zellers will be a drag on a cautious outlook next year with most of the impact in the first quarter.Transcontinental is the largest printer in Canada and fourth-largest in North America. It is a publisher of magazines, French-language educational resources and community newspapers in Quebec and the Atlantic provinces. It also has a digital network of more than 3,500 website.On the Toronto Stock Exchange, Transcontinental shares were off 40 cents, or 4.32%, at $8.85 in afternoon trading Thursday. read more

Competition Bureau of Canada gives 44B CoucheTard deal green light

Competition Bureau of Canada gives $4.4B Couche-Tard deal green light LAVAL, Que. – The Competition Bureau of Canada is giving the green light to Alimentation Couche-Tard (TSX.ATD.B) to purchase its American fuel and convenience store rival CST Brands Inc., provided the company sell some of CST’s Canadian assets to Parkland.In a statement Tuesday, the company based in Laval, Que., said the Competition Bureau gave them the clearance for the acquisition of CST Brands, and the transaction with Parkland Fuel Corp. (TSX: PKI).Couche-Tard says the closings of both transactions are expected Wednesday.The Competition Bureau says Couche-Tard’s proposed deal would lessen competition in numerous markets in Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland and Labrador.But the government agency says to address the concern, Couche-Tard agreed to sell 366 gas stations and gasoline supply contracts to Parkland and one gas station to Philippe Gosselin & Associes Limitee.The Competition Bureau says Parkland has also agreed to sell nine gasoline supply contracts to MacEwen Petroleum Inc. or McDougall Energy Inc. in Ontario.On Monday, Couche-Tard won approval from the U.S. Federal Trade Commission to buy CST Brands on condition that it sell up to 71 stores in the U.S. The stores are located in Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, New Mexico, Ohio and Texas.Empire Petroleum will also have the opportunity to purchase an additional site owned by Couche-Tard. This transaction is expected to be finalized by the beginning of September.Couche-Tard is the largest convenience store operator in Canada and has more than 8,000 convenience stores throughout North America, which are mostly branded as Circle K and Mac’s. by The Canadian Press Posted Jun 27, 2017 6:45 pm MDT Last Updated Jun 28, 2017 at 7:00 am MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email read more