UK must have minister for infrastructure, says PIP chief

first_imgHe said the construction risk usually involved in greenfield infrastructure projects was too high for pension scheme investors typically looking for low risk, long-term, inflation-linked returns to help meet regular pension payment obligations.Dalmore said back in July that it had secured £440m of commitments for its TTT fund from UK pension funds and European investors, and PIP investors were understood to account for most of that, having made a £370m co-investment alongside Dalmore earlier in the month.The PIP was set up by the UK National Association of Pension Funds (NAPF) and backed by the UK government, to channel investment into domestic infrastructure.Weston said the PIP wanted to see more investment opportunities like the TTT for UK pension funds.“If the government is serious about increasing institutional investment in infrastructure, then it needs to ensure a long-term pipeline of opportunities is in place to give pension schemes the confidence to build their internal investment systems and capabilities,” he said.In addition to this, the government has to be prepared to structure projects to deliver the low-risk cash flows pension schemes need, he said.“Finally, the government must appoint a minister specifically for infrastructure to oversee these large projects, which will typically cut across a number of government departments,” Weston said.The TTT project will create a new sewer and build a 25km tunnel below the River Thames.It is due to be completed by 2023. If the UK government wants to encourage more institutional investment in infrastructure, it must shape projects in a way that gives pension funds low-risk cash flows, and appoint a minister specifically for infrastructure, the head of the Pensions Infrastructure Platform (PIP) said.The PIP confirmed it helped secure more than £370m (€506.6m) of investment commitments on behalf of UK pension schemes in the Thames Tideway Tunnel (TTT) project via Dalmore Capital.It said the Bazalgette Tunnel Limited consortium, of which Dalmore is a part, received the licence to own the £4.2bn London “super sewer” on August 24.Mike Weston, chief executive of the PIP, said: “The Thames Tideway Tunnel is a great example of how even greenfield projects can have the risk mitigated to a level acceptable to pension funds.”last_img read more

Scotland hammer Northern Ireland

first_img Weir doubled their lead two minutes later with a close-range shot past Emma Higgins, while Avilla Bergin came close to pulling one back for the hosts with a cross into the Scottish box just before the break but her effort was cleared. Four minutes into the second half Weir added her second – a brilliant long-range effort into the top corner – to leave the hosts struggling to get anything out of the match. Scotland’s Julie Fleeting came on a substitute midway through the second half as she returned to the squad for the first time since August 2011. Both sides were creating chances and it was Ross of Swedish club Vittsjo GIK who put the score beyond doubt as she celebrated her second of the afternoon against Alfie Wylie’s Northern Ireland side 15 minutes from time. Jane Ross and Arsenal’s Caroline Weir were on target with a brace apiece as they handed the Scots a 2-0 half-time lead with two goals in as many minutes before adding two more in the second half. Anna Signeul’s visitors, who handed Glasgow City’s Fiona Brown a debut at Solitude, went in front through Ross, who managed to hit both posts with the ball before it crossed the line. Press Associationcenter_img Scotland Women claimed a comfortable 4-0 friendly victory over Northern Ireland in Belfast on Sunday afternoon.last_img read more

Also with MobileTogether 21 there are new contro

first_imgAlso with MobileTogether 2.1, there are new controls to allow developers to add visual elements to their UIs, new actions, and new XPath functions, properties and operators.Amazon adds functionality to Alexa Skills Kit for developersToday Amazon introduced the Smart Home Skill API for the Alexa Skills Kit, which enables developers to add capabilities to Alexa. Developers can now teach Alexa how to control their cloud-controlled lighting and thermostat devices so customers can give Alexa commands like, “Alexa, turn on the kitchen lights.”With this API, there is no need to build a voice interaction model to handle customer requests. This work is done when the Smart Home API is used. Developers can create skills that connect the devices directly to the lighting and thermostat capabilities so that customers can control their lights, switches, smartplugs or thermostats.Amazon first introduced the Smart Home Skill API as a beta called the Alexa Lighting API in August 2015. As part of the beta program, the company worked with other companies such as Ecobee, Nest, Samsung SmartThings, Sensi and Wink to gather developer feedback while extending Alexa’s smarthome capabilities to work with its devices. Altova announced this morning new pricing and functionality for MobileTogether 2.1, a framework for building and deploying native mobile apps.Version 2.1 introduced more than 20 features based on developer feedback, from functionality for building tables, to error-handling actions, and also flexible options for UI design.With MobileTogether 2.1, the app development environment is free of charge, so it can be rolled out to an unlimited number of developers in a company. Besides the new pricing, the enhancements to tables in MobileTogether 21 include scrollable tables and the ability to align nested tables. These enhancements will help developers for building tables of any size, said the company.“Support for scrollable tables provides flexibility for table creation in MobileTogether,” wrote Erin Cavanaugh, marketing director for Altova, on the company’s blog. “Now, to ensure easy display on devices of all sizes, developers can set the maximum visible size of a table, or set it to fit the rest of the screen, with horizontal or vertical scrolling enabled to view the rest.”last_img read more

In C14 Lambdas were given the ability to have g

first_imgIn C++14, Lambdas were given the ability to have generic parameters with the addition of auto. Auto has now been expanded to support template parameters. This will make it easier to write templates, as auto takes less code to complete.New to C++17 is the addition of structured bindings. Previously, this type of behavior could be accessed via a workaround using std::tie to assign a tuple or pair to different variables directly. Previously, those variables had to be instantiated already, but now they can be initialized in one line. It is also now possible to declare variables within an if statement.Jens Weller is a C++ evangelist and developer based in Germany, and he wrote about the new standard in a blog post about C++17. “C++17 evolves the standard further, the tools for standardization have matured and are working,” he wrote. “Probably the biggest gain for C++. Those who would like to add certain features to the next C++ Standard (a.k.a. C++NEXT/C++20), should now start to make their plans.”There is still more work coming around C++17, most specifically around features that were put off and are destined to be implemented as compiler add-ons. These add-on features are currently implemented in individual compilers, but not across platforms. Visual Studio, for example, offers modules already, while GCC is the first compiler with concept support. C++17 is rolling along at a fast pace. As of June 30, the proposed set of features for the language revision is complete. That was also the day the C++17 committee held its final features meeting in Oulu, Finland, the result of which includes changes that will be available as add-ons for compilers.One of the biggest additions to the language is std:variant. This acts like a union, but it can tell you what it currently contains. It’s basically a type-safe union implementation, and in the future it will likely be used to build advanced capabilities, like pattern matching.(Related: C++ makes the list of languages in high demand)For developers working with templates, the new constexpr if function will allow them to write code that instantiated depending on a compile-time condition. This would allow code to be written, (for example, that can handle integers) to be coupled with code that can handle floating-point math. During compilation, either can be favored and the other not compiled, according to the needs of the numbers present at compile time.last_img read more