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The Delamere-International Newsletter ©

Edition of 30 November 2001 #103

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IN THIS ISSUE

1. Business: How to Conduct a Termination of Employment Meeting.

2. Global Trade: The Millennium Africa Plan (MAP)

3. Travel: Airlines Facing Fight for Survival.

4. Immigration News.

5. Currency News.

 

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1. Business: How to Conduct a Termination of Employment Meeting
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In view of the massive lay-offs taking place in the US and most other major countries of the world, many of our clients who are also employers, have suddenly felt the need of relearning the techniques of how to inform a previously valued employee that his/her services are no longer needed.

This is a very painful experience for the person who must convey the news and also for the employee who is receiving it. The manager who conveys the news must do it clearly and sensitively to help soften the blow.

To read the full report from a leading Human Resource Organization go to this link

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2. Global Trade: The Millennium Africa Plan
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The Millennium Africa Plan (MAP)

This "plan" was recently highlighted at a conference held in Africa, which is being spearheaded by South Africa, Nigeria, Algeria, Senegal and Egypt. The objective is to tackle Africa's development problems, primarily being, infectious diseases, political instability, and disregard of democracy, to mention just of few of the problems.

While visiting South Africa during the first half of 2001, one of our correspondents had the opportunity of listening to the sound track of the speakers attending the conference and it was later commented by a business associate, "this is a very highly ambitious plan".

The question has been posed by many of our clients. Is the "Millennium Africa Plan (MAP)" too ambitious? Has it any chance of bearing fruitage? Or do we now have to realize in view of the massive corruption in Africa from government heads down to the rank and file of minor officials, that Africa is a "basket case"?

Read the report from our colleague Franz Kruger of Radio Netherlands who is an expert on the world's "Hot Spots".

For the full report go to this link

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3. Travel: Airlines Facing Fight for Survival
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Can Major Airlines Survive the Aftermath of September 11th Terrorism Attack?

We were recently forwarded an article regarding major airlines' fight for survival in the competitive travel industry. The world they faced on September 10th was gloomy enough and with fewer business travelers, high fuel costs, and a world economy, which was already showing signs of faltering, the airlines already faced problems.

But after the 11th September terrorism attacks that grounded airlines throughout the USA, no one appeared to know the next direction the airline must go. "Not five years from now. Not six months from now. Not a week from now. The future right now is this afternoon," airline consultant Darryl Jenkins said. "That's long-term planning now."

In 2 weeks the stock value of the 10 largest U.S. airlines fell nearly 30 percent, or more than $8,5 billion.

David Treitel, chairman of airline consultants SH&E, Inc., said in a recent interview, that the first priority is stopping the cash drain. 'The $5 billion in federal financial aid will barely replace what the airlines have lost since 11th September", he said. "The whole industry's resources are being depleted very rapidly right now," Treitel said.

For almost every airline throughout the world, survival means getting smaller and that is why massive re-trenchments (layoffs) are now taking place. Delta, American, Virgin British, Northwest, and KLM are all reducing their operating and running costs. Many carriers are including on-board services, with meals disappearing from all but long-distance flights. Many older jetliners such as the Boeing 727s and McDonnell Douglas DC-9s will be mothballed in a matter of months. New order for the latest jets are being put on hold, and we received information that Rolls Royce the British jet engine manufacturers are laying off 5000 of their workers in the next few months.

What is the answer? According to Robert Crandall head if American Airlines, "The important point is that people will still want to travel. They have traveled in the past. They will want to travel in the future. Once the airline system is once again regarded as conveniently usable, they'll go back to flying," he said

Have you noticed any reduction of services on your favourite airline, especially those outside the USA? Let us know so we can pass it on to our network of clients and website visitors.

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4. Immigration News
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The State Department has announced that beginning the week of 18 November 2001, all men between the ages of 16 and 45 from certain Arab and Muslim countries will be subject to a waiting period on non-immigrant visa applications that will probably add an additional 20 days to the application process.

The move, confirmed yesterday by Secretary of State Colin Powell in an Interview on the Fox News Channel, is intended to allow the State Department to cross check applicants names with the FBI's terrorism databases. Secretary Powell said he hoped the measures would be temporary.

Applicants subject to the new security screening will also be required to complete a new background questionnaire form that will cover previous military service and weapons training, previous travels and whether the applicant has previously had any other passports.

The State Department has expanded the number of countries subject to the new visa restrictions beyond the countries included on the list of countries that sponsor or support terrorist activities. The new list of countries reportedly includes the following:

Afghanistan, Algeria, Bahrain, Djibouti, Egypt, Eritrea, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Malaysia, Morocco, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and Yemen.

Footnote:

We have been informed that moves are underway to make the above applicable to all countries

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5.Currency News
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The South African Rand crashes through the "psychological" R10 = $1 barrier. It seems only a few years ago when our firm opened its office in Cape Town that we exchanged R1 to $1, but that is all history now, including the famous "Rubicon Speech" by the then Prime Minister P W Botha, but we shall tell you about that story in a future Newsletter.

Will this plunge in value of the local currency have any effect on investors and traders? Read full story

The Big Mac Index

A novel way to test if a currency is undervalued or overvalued against the US Dollar is to use the "Big Mac Index". The "Big Mac Index" is an unofficial global barometer that uses the ubiquitous Mc Donald's famous product to measure the purchasing power of the currencies around the world. Believe it or not, according to the latest "Index" South Africa is the cheapest place to buy a "Big Mac", but it also tells us that the South African currency is undervalued by about 61% against the US Dollar. Do you see an investment opportunity here? Let us know. Read full story

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Disclaimer

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