Huawei Launches FRMCS Solution to Facilitate Digital Transformation of Railway

BERLIN, Sept. 23, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Huawei officially launched the Future Railway Mobile Communication System (FRMCS) solution at the InnoTrans 2022 and the 9th Huawei Global Rail Summit in Berlin, Germany, where special guests, Wang Guoyu, COO of Huawei Aviation & Rail BU, and Li Jie, President of Huawei Enterprise Wireless Domain, spoke about its success. This solution is a remarkable achievement for Huawei, as a result of its extensive research and experience in ICT deployment within the railway industry of over two decades. With a focus on improving safety and reliability, Huawei FRMCS expands train-to-ground wireless services from train control and dispatch to railway O&M, railway IoT, and more. It empowers widespread digital transformation of the rail sector, ensures train operation safety, and improves railway operations efficiency.

Huawei launches the FRMCS solution

The demand for smart railways that can carry huge capacity is growing. Huawei FRMCS can not only provide the required high reliability and low latency for train control and dispatch, but also support new services such as locomotive status monitoring, train operation monitoring, and visualized dispatch of O&M personnel, improving fault prediction accuracy and O&M efficiency.

The FRMCS solution uses a new technology, 8T8R Smart MIMO, which allows it to achieve the same coverage in the 1900 MHz band as that of GSM-R in the 900 MHz band when working with high-power devices from Huawei’s partners. This slashes deployment and maintenance costs of FRMCS on 1900 MHz and simplifies the deployment of FRMCS networks. By providing three levels of redundancy, including key boards, key network elements, and wireless networks, Huawei FRMCS eliminates single-point failures on networks, ensures high reliability of devices and networks, and meets the requirements of the European Train Control System (ETCS). Its architecture complies with railway industry standards, which facilitates the interconnection between wireless networks and railway industry applications, as well as the deployment of new services.

Li Jie said: “The railway industry is now in a critical period of digital transformation when the requirements for train-to-ground wireless communication systems are higher than ever before. Huawei FRMCS can meet these requirements by integrating Huawei’s 4G and 5G technologies. It can help railway customers build high-reliability, high-bandwidth, future-oriented train-to-ground wireless broadband networks that are safe, reliable, converged, simplified, and capable of long-term evolution.”

Huawei will work with industry standards organizations, industry customers, and partners to promote the maturing and large-scale commercial rollout of FRMCS, and build a wireless digital foundation for smart railways.

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SAA has built solid foundation, says board chairperson

South African Airways (SAA) executive chair, John Lamola, has dismissed claims that the future of the State-owned carrier is at risk.

This after media reports suggested that the carrier is facing liquidation due to delays in the conclusion of the strategic equity partnership (SEP) transaction with Takatso Consortium.

Lamola explained that comments attributed to Acting DG of the Department of Public Enterprises (DPE), Jacky Molisane, about the transaction have been misconstrued.

“On Wednesday… SAA and the DPE were making a scheduled presentation to Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on Public Enterprises on SAA’s 2017/18 annual financial statements.

“An ancillary question related to the progress on the SEP transaction, in relation to funds outstanding from National Treasury for the conclusion of SAA’s Business Rescue Plan – answered by the Acting DG – led to a press story casting an impression that the future of SAA is in peril.

“The news that SAA will be liquidated if the SEP transaction is not concluded has been taken out of context, and the import of the statement made by the Acting DG is exaggerated and blown out of proportion.

“We are in constant contact with the Acting DG. Her views, which are based on a continuous management of all the regulatory, legal and commercial processes common to transactions of this nature, are aligned with those of the board of SAA. The SAA board is constantly monitoring and assessing the corporate risks associated with this transitional period SAA is going through,” he said.

However, he also acknowledged the delays in the conclusion of the SEP transaction.

“Typical of normal corporate governance protocols, a high-level risk management process involving both the DPE and SAA Board has been put in place to charter the future of SAA since the airline emerged out of business rescue, with a restructuring solution that entails the introduction of a private strategic equity partner to this State-owned company.

“The transaction is beset with delays emanating from legal requirements to comply with aviation regulatory conditions and the Competition Commission. We can confirm that both SAA and the DPE are working on a time horizon of end of March 2023 for the substantive conclusion of the transaction, as this period marks a reportable end of the current financial year 2022/23 for SAA,” Lamola said.

He said despite these challenges, the airline’s restructuring following the business rescue process has provided a platform for the carrier to succeed.

“As the airline celebrates its full year of successful operations, we are more than satisfied that we have built the foundation for a sustainable and growing airline business.

“The SAA board will do everything in its power to ensure SAA survives. As a company with an overhead cost structure and operating model that have been restructured by the business rescue process, and a transformed management culture, SAA is poised for a sustained growth.

“SAA management assures that there is a variety of resources within the company and a global aviation industry that can be innovatively exploited for the future success of SAA. We assure our customers and all our stakeholders and partners that there are no plans, nor an intention to see South African Airways liquidated,” Lamola said.

 

 

 

Source: South African Government News Agency

BRICS Ministers voice concern on global conflicts

The BRICS Ministers of Foreign Affairs and International Relations have expressed concern on the increasing and ongoing conflicts in many parts of the world.

“They reiterated the need for full respect of international humanitarian law and the provision of humanitarian aid by the basic principles of humanity, neutrality, impartiality and independence established in UNGA resolution 46/182,” the Ministers’ statement read.

The press statement released on Thursday follows the meeting on the margins of the 77th Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA77) in New York, led by South Africa in its capacity as the incoming BRICS Chair for 2023.

The BRICS alliance consists of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa – five major emerging economies with over three billion people that account for over 40% of the world’s population and over a quarter of the global gross domestic product.

The Ministers recalled their national positions concerning the situation in Ukraine, as expressed at the appropriate forums, namely the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) and UNGA.

“The Ministers committed to respecting the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all States and stressed their commitment to the peaceful resolution of differences and disputes between countries through dialogue and consultation, and supported all efforts conducive to the peaceful settlement of crises.”

Terrorism

The BRICS leaders also condemned all forms of terrorism and recognised the threat emanating from terrorism, extremism and radicalisation.

“They reiterated that terrorism should not be associated with any religion, nationality, civilisation or ethnic group,” the statement read.

The Ministers emphasised that States have the primary responsibility in combating terrorism, with the UN continuing to play a central and coordinating role in this area.

Vaccines

They also reiterated the need for equitable distribution of vaccines and speedy vaccination to fill the immunisation gap globally.

“It is imperative to ensure access to safe, quality, effective and affordable medical countermeasures, including vaccines, diagnostics, therapeutics and essential medical products to people from all countries, especially from developing countries and the least developed.”

The leaders said they back the leading role of the World Health Organisation (WHO) in combating the COVID-19 pandemic and acknowledged initiatives such as the ACT-Accelerator and its COVAX Facility.

They acknowledged the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights and the decision to discuss, within six months, its extension to cover the production and supply of COVID-19 diagnostics and therapeutics.

They also stressed the need to continue to strengthen the cooperation of the research on the efficacy and safety of vaccines in light of new variants of COVID-19.

The Ministers also addressed the new and emerging issues affecting “personnel” movements, through and recognition of the national document of vaccination against COVID-19 and respective testing, for the purpose of international travel.

“They called on all countries, international agencies and philanthropic organisations to procure vaccines and boosters from manufacturers in emerging markets and developing countries, including BRICS countries, to ensure that the manufacturing capabilities being developed are sustained.”

The Ministers also underscored the importance of promoting technology transfer.

“Collaborative models of research and development should be pursued to build stronger and sustainable partnerships among countries to make the fruits of research and innovation accessible to the wider global population.”

Trade

The Ministers reaffirmed their commitment to multilateralism and the multilateral trading system with the World Trade Organisation (WTO) at its core.

“They reiterated the strong and necessary need to strengthen and reform the multilateral system, including the UN, the WTO, the International Monetary Fund, and other international organisations.”

They further reiterated their commitment to strengthen the multilateral trading system of the WTO, which is consensus and rules-based, transparent, non-discriminatory, open, free and inclusive with special and differential treatment for developing countries.

“They urged all States to refrain from promulgating and applying any economic, financial or trade measures not by the rules of the WTO, international law and the UN Charter that impede the full achievement of economic and social development, particularly in developing countries.”

 

 

 

Source: South African Government News Agency

SARS operations net wildlife criminals, tax evaders

Intensified South African Revenue Services-led (SARS) operations have seen the net fall on several tax evaders and wildlife criminals.

On Thursday, the revenue collector said the operations were in line with its strategy of making it hard and costly for those who engage in non-compliant activities.

SARS has in recent times focused on tax audit investigations aimed at suspect non-compliant taxpayers, actors and facilitators benefitting directly or indirectly from tax evasion and illicit financial flows stemming from wildlife crime.

A multi-disciplinary law enforcement operation saw the search of 11 private and business properties operated by individuals who were engaged in tax evasion and wildlife trafficking being conducted.

The operation was led by the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (Hawks) Wildlife Trafficking Section, the South African Police Service (SAPS) Special Task and Force Unit, Counter Intelligence, Asset Forfeiture Unit‚ and SANParks, Department of Environmental Affairs, National Prosecuting Authority and SARS Specialised Debt and Customs Dog Detector.

“Several arrests were made including active SAPS members plus a seizure of assets and cash used in these criminal operations. The Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation further identified a number of trucks and vehicles suspected to be stolen,” said SARS.

Resulting tax investigations had resulted in notable successes including legal recovery, civil proceedings and criminal charges against a criminal syndicate involved in wildlife trafficking including rhino poaching. The legal actions mounted by SARS against members of the criminal syndicate include, sequestration and forfeiture of the proceeds of crime.

“In order to strengthen cross border enforcement actions SARS continues to engage in enhanced co-operation with international tax and customs agencies abroad and collaboration with INTERPOL, the World Customs Organisation (WCO), the OCED Task Force on Tax Crimes (TFTC) and the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).”

SARS said tax evasion was an integral offence to money-laundering. In this regard, SARS would continue to enhance its engagements with the Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC), Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation, the Department Forestry, Fisheries & Environment and engagement with the South African Anti-Money-Laundering Integrated Task Force (SAMLIT), which is a private-public partnership aimed at combating financial crimes and illicit financial flows linked to criminal activity.

“Wildlife crime and illicit trade by transnational organized crime groups threatens not only our iconic species, like the rhino and pangolin but have a direct negative impact on the South African tourism industry which contributes more than R268 billion (4.3%) of GDP annually and employs more than 1.1 million people.

“Environmental crimes and the illegal trade in natural resources are closely associated to financial crimes like tax evasion, tax fraud, money laundering, illicit financial flow, corruption, drug trafficking, and human trafficking,” said SARS Commissioner Edward Kieswetter.

He added that the illicit hunting of rhino and trading in rhino horns constitutes a national as well as an international crime.

“In the 10 years since, 9,885 rhinos have been killed across Africa, according to the 22 August 2022 report by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) there were 22,137 rhinos, black and white, left in Africa at the end of 2021. SARS will do all within the provisions of the law it administers to confront these criminal gangs,” he said.

 

 

 

Source: South African Government News Agency

Parliament welcomes update on Mangaung, Enoch Mgijima municipalities

The Portfolio Committee on Cooperative and Traditional Affairs has welcomed progress reports on Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs’ intervention in the Mangaung and Enoch Mgijima municipalities.

During a meeting this week, the committee expressed its appreciation for the progress the department is making in salvaging both municipalities.

The department briefed the committee on Wednesday on its interventions in both municipalities, focusing on governance, institutional capacity, finance and service delivery.

According to the department, the municipalities are in disarray at all levels of governance, institutional capacity and finance.

“It emerged that the rot is at a political level. There is no cooperation between political parties and they are internally riddled by factionalism,” the committee said in a statement.

The Mangaung Metropolitan Municipality is currently under national intervention, in terms of Section 139(7) of the Constitution.

The committee heard that multi-sectoral teams were deployed in the municipality in an acting capacity as heads of departments and acting city manager until the positions are filled or for a six-month period, whichever comes first.

The committee also heard that Enoch Mgijima Local Municipality has been in a prolonged financial and service delivery crisis.

The Eastern Cape Provincial Executive Council intervened, in terms of S139(1) and S139(5) of the Constitution, in September 2018.

According to the report, a financial recovery plan was developed for the municipality, but the implementation thereof did not yield the desired results. The previous municipal council failed to play its oversight role.

The committee heard that municipality’s financial crisis persisted, with material breach of its obligations to provide basic services. It also failed to honour its financial commitments, a state of affairs that necessitated national government intervention.

In April 2022, Cabinet resolved to intervene in the municipality, in terms of section 139(7) of the Constitution.

During the engagements, the committee called for the improvements in both municipalities to be sustained, so that they can assist their citizens and become centres of excellence.

The committee also called for an urgent settlement of the R1.3 billion in government debt owed to the Mangaung Metropolitan Municipality, as the municipality needs that money “now more than ever”.

Committee chairperson, Fikile Xasa, said the committee is hopeful that the interventions will succeed and that the government and Cabinet in particular, is the last line of defence of the people.

“The progress you have made confirms that indeed a bigger and [more] powerful thing has intervened and more progress is going to be achieved.

“We are hopeful that even the non-cooperation you [COGTA] are reporting of Enoch Mgijima Local Municipality is going to end,” he said.

 

 

 

Source: South African Government News Agency

Hard work hits the sweet spot

An innate ability to create delicious delicacies is leading a KwaZulu-Natal chef to kneading a brighter future for himself and his colleagues.

When he was a child, Skhumbuzo Maphanga used to while away the hours cooking and baking with his mother.

While he loved to cook, Maphanga was keen on pursuing a career in law. However, a career guidance presentation egged him on to pursue a career in the hospitality industry.

“I always had a passion for cooking and being in the kitchen always made me feel at home. However, the baking or chef thing was not on my radar as I wanted to be a lawyer from the time I entered high school.

“When the International Hotel School did a presentation at school, as part of career guidance, I was interested and convinced that I was going to enrol in that hotel school the following year,” he says.

However, life handed him a lemon and he found himself not being able enrol after completing his matric at Alexandra High School in 2003. With his parents having raised the expensive tuition fees, he was able to attend the hotel school in 2005 where he studied towards a Diploma in Culinary Management.

In his final year in 2007, Maphanga was among the number of outstanding students who were awarded a two-year internship programme in America.

The knowledge he gained in pastry making helped him prepare for employment.

“While in America, I decided to only focus on pastry. I learnt how to plate desserts, bread, cakes, and mass producing for events.

“Other students chose to go to all departments in the kitchen, but I chose to specialise in pastry because it is so complex,” says Maphanga who hails from Imbali Township in Pietermaritzburg.

Today, the 36-year-old is an executive pastry chef and owner of Bakers Gallery. The Durban-based outfit supplies cakes to local residents and also eight food retailers around the city.

The business is among the first tenants to move into the Dube Trade Port Special Economic Zone’s mini factories complex, which is aimed at supporting small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs).

Special Economic Zones (SEZs), are geographically designated areas of a country set aside for specifically targeted economic activities, supported through special arrangements (that may include laws) and systems that are often different from those that apply in the rest of the country.

The R90 million mini-factory development, which is comprised of 18 units, is an ideal platform for SMMEs requiring small-scale manufacturing, assembly, warehousing and office space.

The mini factories are in a strategic location adjacent to Dube Cargo Terminal within Durban’s King Shaka International Airport precinct.

Today, the establishment employs four people including three bakers who started as dishwashers and were later trained to make freshly baked cakes from scratch.

The makings of Bakers Gallery

For Maphanga, starting a business was never part of his recipe for success. Instead, when he returned to South Africa, he found a job at a Johannesburg hotel where he quickly climbed the ladder.

It was a friend who encouraged him to bake and sell his own cakes as a side job.

“I didn’t have the confidence to do stuff on my own, but I gave it a try and I got a client. However, I decided to move back to Durban and lost all my clients in Johannesburg, and I had to start all over again,” he recalls.

Soon after, he started work as a pastry chef at Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre (ICC) and that is when Bakers Gallery SA started in 2013, as a side job to supplement his salary. The bakery initially supplied a home industry shop.

Later, Maphanga would move into his boss’s house who had converted his garage for him to use for baking. However, as the business expanded, he struggled to juggle between the two jobs and had to make a choice between his full-time job and building a business.

It was Bakers Gallery that would triumph and it was registered as a business in 2018. He would find business partners in his younger brother, Siphesihle who is also a trained chef specialising in complex decoration and painting of celebratory cakes, as well as his friend Ntobeko Ndlovu, a qualified educator and a medical scientist.

Thinking outside the box

When COVID-19 hit in 2020, Maphanga and his partners were forced to think outside the box to sustain the business.

Through a friend, in 2020, the trio had their first break into the retail sector with a contract to supply cake loaves, cake slices, cake rings, cupcakes, biscuits, tarts, and pastries to Spar stores.

Within eight months, they were already supplying eight Durban-based Spar supermarkets and managed to raise funding from one of the big financial institutions.

With the business expanding, more private investors came on board.

In the long term, the team’s personal goal is to achieve the Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP), a system that provides the framework for monitoring the total food system, from harvesting to consumption, to reduce the risk of foodborne illness. The system is designed to identify and control potential problems before they occur.

With a business plan backed by detailed research and documented growth and demand for their products, Maphanga says future plans are to supply retail central distribution centres and use online shopping platforms, like Takealot, to market their cookies online.

“The plan is to supply the distribution centre for most Spar and Checkers stores in KwaZulu-Natal. The evidence is there…in a space of eight months, we were selling into eight Spar stores. This tells us that the demand of our product is very high.

“If we are to meet our goals of supplying our products nationally, we will need to run two to three shifts a day to achieve the volumes. We are currently busy finalising the products to ship to Takealot so that they can ship the cakes online.

“We also anticipate that by selling cookies in bulk online, we will be well positioned to grow exponentially,” says an optimistic Maphanga.

Bakers Gallery is also looking to collaborate with caterers supplying cakes, cookies and desserts. They have already supplied the likes of Durban ICC and Balmoral Hotel with desserts for big functions.

As part of giving back to the community and job creation, Bakers Gallery offers short baking courses. The bakery is also planning to open a training facility for people who have a passion for baking and artistic cake making, targeting disadvantaged youth.

“It will be a great way to teach people how to bake and empower themselves by means of selling,” he says.

Maphanga’s message to other aspiring entrepreneurs is: make sure your books and documentation are in order, work hard and have the determination to succeed.

“It is not easy, and for me, I can safely say growing the business has been the hardest part of my life but it is rewarding. Funding is hard to come by [and] to get it, you need to be on your toes and have lot of determination.

“Be a person who says: ‘I’m not going to give up and work hard’. It is a lonely journey and you will lose touch with people, especially your friends, unless you have a lot of support from them and your family,” he says.

To date, Maphanga’s recipe to is proving to be a success.

 

 

 

Source: South African Government News Agency

Prioritise quality service, Cele urges SAPS trainees

Police Minister Bheki Cele has urged almost 500 police trainee graduates to prioritise providing a quality service to the South African public above anything else.

The Minister made the remarks during a parade of the 495 trainees who had successfully completed the Introductory Police Learning Development Programme (IPLDP) at the South African Police Service (SAPS) Academy in Mthatha on Friday.  A total of 194 trainees were paraded in Mthatha.

The SAPS held three parades, one at the SAPS Academy in Mthatha and another at the SAPS Academy All Saints and the third was at the SAPS Academy Thabazimbi in Limpopo.

The SAPS said the 495 newly trained police officers are the first batch of 10 000 members that will be deployed as fully-fledged constables to stations, units and all SAPS service points to ensure more boots on the ground towards enhanced police visibility.

Cele urged the trainees to abide by the police code of conduct.

He said: “Don’t deviate. Stay in your lane. Let me take this opportunity to congratulate the trainees who have been recognised by academy commanders as having performed well in the areas of street survival law, physical training and drill.”

Congratulating the group, he said: “Rest assured that the ministry and SAPS management recognises and appreciates that your standing here has come as a result of mental, physical and spiritual hard work. So walk and hold your head up.”

The Minister said the trainees were the best group of people that could be selected for the programme.

“These people standing before me are all graduates. These 194 people standing before me are all graduates, among them are criminologists, we have LLBs here, and we have graduates in forensics here.

“As you go out, do not diminish the pride we have in you. But what will make us more proud is when you are on the ground and you are really implementing what you have been taught and go beyond the call of duty,” he said.

He urged the graduates to execute their duties to the best of their abilities so they could gain the trust of communities.

“As you walk, as South Africans look at you, they must say, here are our saviours. You must say [to] yourself: ‘I am your hope’ and you must agree that and that you are our hope. Don’t do things that will put your peers in shame. Just be there for South Africans, be humble and be very, very close to South Africans.

“That’s the one duty that you have. You must know that you are an asset of South Africans. There is no job here, you’re only coming for service. This is not a job. This is a service.”

Cele urged the recruits to flush out criminals and tackle violent crime head on.

“We are not producing you for fresh graves; we are producing you to work with us to protect [citizens]. Welcome to this organisation, stay blue,” he said.

 

 

 

Source: South African Government News Agency

Huawei’s Smart Urban Rail Network Solution Is Unveiled at InnoTrans 2022

BERLIN, Sept. 23, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — InnoTrans 2022 took place from September 20 to 23 in Berlin, Germany. At this conference, Huawei demonstrated its innovative applications, practices, and achievements in smart rail construction and development. In the ” Digitalization of Rail Infrastructure ” exhibition area, Huawei showcased extensive smart urban rail solutions, including Wi-Fi 6 train-to-ground communications network, smart station, and smart inspection solutions.

Innovative Wi-Fi 6 accelerates digital transformation towards smart urban rail

In terms of urban rail transit, fully automated train operations require real-time backhaul of bandwidth-hungry services such as PIS.

Huawei’s Wi-Fi 6 Train-To-Ground Communications Network Solution leverages many technological innovations, achieving real-time service transmission with up to 1.4 Gbit/s bandwidth at a speed of 160 km/h. Furthermore, MBB soft handover ensures stable transmission for train-to-ground services. Huawei’s solution takes the lead in implementing always-on, large-bandwidth, and low-latency transmission of all services, facilitating automated urban rail train operations and ensuring safe travel for citizens.

Smart stations greatly improve travel experience

In urban rail stations, to ensure efficient operations of the OCC, a data communications network is needed to connect terminals at every corner of the station to the OCC.

Huawei’s Intelligent Low-Carbon Campus Network Solution provides a unique simplified architecture comprising a central switch and plug-and-play RUs, achieving “one device, one network”. The industry-leading optical-electrical PoE technology provides 60 W PoE++ at distances of 300 meters. One-off cabling supports smooth evolution for the next 15 years, and the green and energy-saving design enables sustainable development of station services.

Integrated IP networks support multi-line operations of urban rail

Huawei’s Smart Urban Rail Network Solution uses FlexE-based hard slicing technology to centrally carry and securely isolate many urban rail service systems, including AFC, PIS, and ACS. This delivers stable intra-line and inter-line data transmission at a large bandwidth, fast urban rail service migration to the cloud, on-demand resource allocation, and flexible scalability, helping customers transform from single-line operations to multi-line operations.

Currently, Huawei’s smart urban rail solutions have served over 300 urban rail lines. Looking ahead, Huawei will continue to dive deep into urban rail service scenarios by fully leveraging its technical prowess and experience in digital transformation.

During InnoTrans 2022, Huawei held the 9th Global Rail Summit on 22nd September at the Grand Hyatt Berlin to explore the most efficient ways of Driving Digitalization in Future Rail to Create New Value Together.