In this case, if the two clubs are in the first six positions and, therefore, already classified for Europe, it would be seventh. If one of the two was ranked in the top six, the other finalist would go and if neither of the two finalists were in the top six, it would be the one with the best position in the league competition of the two. Then he also pointed out that the decision on the classification for Europe will be made at the request of UEFA, “according to the classification of the last day of the First Division in equal numbers of games played by the 20 teams” and with certain criteria .The first four classifieds of the First Division would go to the Champions League at that time and the fifth and sixth to the Europa League. classified with the conditioning factor of the Cup final that should have been played on the 18th. At the last meeting of its Executive Committee UEFA gave federations a deadline of May 27 to submit their guidelines on eligibility for Europe, while “strongly” recommending ending the leagues. In case of impossibility due to the pandemic, it will require the federations in question to select the teams based on the sports merits in the 2019/20 campaign. UEFA has announced this Thursday to the Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) that the seventh-ranked LaLiga team will have a place in the next edition of the Europa League, if the final of the Copa del Rey cannot be played. In this way, UEFA discards the option proposed by the RFEF so that in case the cup final is not played and if one of the two finalists already had a place for European competition, the other finalist would participate in the Europa League 2020-21. The Cup final, which must face Athletic Club and Real Sociedad in Seville, is in the air and right now, and at the expense of the League being able to resume Real Sociedad is fourth and would be classified for the Champions League along with Barcelona, Real Madrid and Seville. ANDl Athletic is tenth. The seventh of the classification is the Valencia, who would be the beneficiary with a European place today in case the decisive match of the KO tournament could not be played and finally the league classification was the current one.The communication from UEFA to the RFEF indicates that “for entry into the Europa League 2020-21, in the event that a National Association ends prematurely, for legitimate reasons, a national cup and, consequently, cannot determine the winner for sporting merits, in application of the competition regulations, the highest ranked unclassified national championship club is the one that is classified, “confirmed the European body to EFE. He also notified that access to the Europa League 2020-21 in the event that the Cup final is completed “in its original format or with another and the classification of the relevant club or clubs is obtained with sporting merits, remains unchanged”, as confirmed by EFE the European body. The RFEF decided on April 16 the classification criteria for European competitions next season and he considered three different options depending on whether the Cup final cannot be played.
In 2002, there was no clue that Usain Bolt would become the best 100-metre, sprinter in history. Save for a forlorn Class Three effort at Boys and Girls’ Champions two years earlier, he had concentrated on the 200 and 400 metres with much success. The penny dropped at a training camp hosted by the G.C. Foster College. The nation’s finest junior athletes were assembled at the G.C. Foster College for an ongoing training camp. It was a key plank of Jamaica’s preparation for the World Junior Championships which were set for Kingston in July 2002. Bolt lined up against many of the best junior 100-metre sprinters of the day and cleaned their clocks. Those present were stunned by his speed. It was a glimpse into his famous future. In those days, training camps were a standard part of preparation for our junior teams. In the late 1990s, stalwarts like Ian Forbes, Juliet Parkes and Brian Smith manned these camps. They ensured that our juniors faced the world’s best at their best. There was even a time when support camps were held outside of the Corporate Area, with the late Constantine Haughton sharing his expertise with those who couldn’t reach Kingston. The conversion of Melaine Walker to the 400-metre hurdles was done at camp by World Junior head coach Stephen Francis with the blessing of Walker’s high school Raymond ‘KC’ Graham after an injury had threatened her 2000 season. Walker took a bronze in the World Juniors in her new event and the rest is history. In 2002, the juniors were housed each weekend at G.C. Foster and their school coaches freely attended and shared their knowledge. The out-turn was a brilliant performance by the team when the big show rolled around. Bolt famously won the 200m. Sherone Simpson, Kerron Stewart, Anniesha McLaughlin and Simone Facey clicked to gold in the 4×100 metres. Facey and McLaughlin took silver medals in the 100m and 200m respectively, with Jermaine Gonzales and Sherul Morgan third in their respective 400-metre finals. Walker moved up to second in the hurdles, behind a world junior record by Lashinda Demus of the United States. It’s a pity that the World Junior Championships won’t come to Jamaica in 2016 but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t prepare for it well. The aforementioned training camps have largely dropped off the calender. Where team members come from schools with self-sufficient programmes, they can arrive ready for national duty. That isn’t often the case. In 2010, distance ace Kemoy Campbell was slowed when funding for track at his school ran out after Champs. A camp, like the one that heralded the sprint future of Bolt, would likely have seen to his welfare. Perhaps, a better prepared Campbell would have advanced past the first round on the 1500-metres in the World Juniors in Moncton, Canada. Our top seniors largely have camps of their own, but our juniors suffer if left alone. Our medal haul at the World Juniors tell the story. In 2002, the team’s 11-medal performance may have been boosted by brilliant home support. Since then, the take has settled at lower levels. Jamaica garnered nine medals in 2004, eight in 2006, six in 2008, three in 2010, five in 2012 and six in 2014 at successive stagings of the Under-20 championships. This year, a three-day camp helped to prepare Jamaica’s 2015 Pan-Am Junior team for a 13-medal haul. The 2002 World Junior Championships in Kingston were wonderful. The support by a capacity audience, night after night, and the performances by the likes of Carolina Kluft, Blanka Vlasic, Meseret Defar, Darrell Brown and Bolt make it worthwhile for the authorities to consider a return to Kingston at some point in the future. In the meantime, it makes sense to prepare well for the 2016 renewal, wherever it is staged. The revival of preparatory junior camps would be a good way to get out of the blocks. – Hubert Lawrence was present at the 2002 World Juniors.
FASTANDFLASHY has never won going this far, but represents the lone speed and could scramble home. OH MY GRAND PA won easily over 1400 metres on September 24 while CAMOUFLAGE finished second to out-of-class MISS DOROTHY, some weeks ago, and if fully sound enough, should be able to to beat this field with connections calling up Harvey for the ride. JAMAI RAJA, who impressed when leading home WILL IN CHRGE in a fast-run 1500-metre race on October 6, clocking 1:30.2, should give Harvey and his apprentice master Azan another winner in the third race for the Royal Dad Trophy over 1820 metres. Given the additional real estate, the free running JAMAI RAJA, who finished a close second to BIGDADDYKOOOL in the Lotto Classic over 2000 metres back in May, should be wary of old rival WILL IN CHARGE over the longer distance and a good race is anticipated. FREE RANGE, who beat all baring FIERY PATH over 1400 metres last Saturday, is even more effective over the 1200 metres of the fourth race and Harvey seems gifted with yet another winner, despite the presence of LEGAL ARENA, CRUCIAL VALOR and QUICK CHIC in a field of 10. LEGAL ARENA, who was second to BIG BUCK over 1400 metres on August 1, looks the principal danger coming from the in-form stables of Steven Todd. The last two races in the first Super-6 should see the recent winner UNRULY TEXAS repeating at the expense of SWEET DIMENSION while HE’S A MACHINE, the mount of leading jockey Omar Walker, is tipped to go one better in the sixth race following his good second to LEIGHTON REID on October 3. Both the Pick-9 and Super-6s were caught on Monday’s Heroes Day programme at Caymanas Park, ensuring there are no carryovers going into tomorrow’s meet. The Pick-9 will embrace races two to 10 with a guaranteed minimum of $1 million, the first Super-6 from race one to six, the late Super-6 from race five to 10, both offering minimums of $750,000. We look at the first Super-6 which gets underway with a two-year-old maiden special over 1000 metres round to be contested by eight starters, including DUTY FIRST to be ridden by Paul Francis for trainer Gordon Lewis and the well-forward first-time runner SUPERBOLT with top apprentice Bebeto Harvey riding for trainer Richard Azan. DUTY FIRST has finished second in her two races to date, the more recent when 11/4 lengths second to FOOT SOLDIER over the straight on October 6. She has been administered Lasix for the first time, will report even better and is poised to fight out the finish. However, preference is for SUPERBOLT who has travelled nicely at exercise in the company of his more experienced stable companion TOUGH COOKIE. The bay colt by Adore The Gold out of Patty Girl looked fluent out of the straight in 1:01.2 by 47.1 easily at exercise recently and should get off the mark immediately. Next on the programme is a one mile race for $180,000 claimers in which down-in-class CAMOUFLAGE, the recent winner OH MY GRAND PA, YES SHE WILL, YES WE WILL, and the front running FASTANDFLASHY should decide the outcome in a field of eight. FIRST SUPER-6 FANCIES (1) SUPERBOLT/DUTY FIRST (2) CAMOUFLAGE/OH MY GRANDPA (3) JAMAI RAJA/WILL IN CHARGE (4) FREE RANGE/LEGAL ARENA (5) UNRULY TEXAS/SWEET DIMENSION (6) HE’S A MACHINE LONE SPEED
Dear Editor,In a recent letter to the media, former government minister Dr. Leslie Ramsammy spoke out against banning of paraquat, which is used extensively in Guyana through gramoxone. Stated Dr, Ramsammy, “Banning of one pesticide can just result in other pesticides becoming suicidal weapons, since there are many other pesticides used in agriculture that are far more toxic than paraquat.”Dr Ramsammy’s statement is inaccurate. According to the Pesticide Action Network, “Paraquat is the MOST HIGHLY ACUTELY TOXIC HERBICIDE to be marketed over the last 60 years”. As well, there are 22 different species of weeds in 13 countries that have become resistant to paraquat, which suggests that its effectiveness is gradually being eroded.Additionally, there are numerous highly effective alternatives to paraquat, and these are being used by many nations, none of which has any significant pesticide/herbicide suicide rate.In fact there are many online lists of alternatives to paraquat that have been recommended by various entities, including the WWF, and these are currently in use in many nations, including Argentina and India, major agro-producers.Also, a number of countries that manufacture paraquat have banned its usage, and some of these nations have larger agriculture sectors than Guyana’s, which clearly indicates that they recognize its inherent dangers to their own populations.That they continue to manufacture this poison is because there is still a market for it. Naturally, if that market is eliminated, then manufacturing will be discontinued.Major agricultural producers China and Brazil have also banned paraquat (which will be completely phased out by 2020), as has the European Union. In fact, 32 nations currently, including Cayman Islands in the Caribbean, have banned paraquat.As well, many international organisations, such as Rainforest Alliance, Fairtrade, Forest Stewardship Council, UTZ (a leading coffee certification programme worldwide), the International Organisation for Biological and Integrated Control of Noxious Animals and Plants International (IOBC), and food giants like Dole, United Plantations (one of the largest oil palm plantation companies in Malaysia), Chiquita and the Danish company AarhusKarlshamn, a leading producer of speciality vegetable oils and fats, have banned paraquat.Paraquat is one of the most common pesticides causing death from suicide. It has a 60-70% mortality rate (Seok et al 2009), much higher than any other agents. It is a significant suicide agent in many nations, including Sri Lanka, Malaysia, South Korea, Thailand, Fiji, Japan, Hong Kong, Samoa, Trinidad & Tobago, Costa Rica, Mexico and China. However, a study of 250 attempted suicides with paraquat, in Korea in 2007, revealed that only 38% of people had intentionally selected paraquat as the agent; indicating that if paraquat was not available, the survival rate from attempted suicide would be significantly higher (Seok et al 2009).Furthermore, paraquat is linked to Parkinson’s disease, which can, and often does, catalyze suicide ideation leading to suicide fatalities. Actor Robin Williams is one notable victim of Parkinson’s disease- related suicide.Many nations that resist measures to restrict use of paraquat and/or to ban it do not have significant pesticide suicide rates. Guyana does. As well, in many nations that still use paraquat and have significant pesticide suicide rates, there is growing advocacy for its ban, as in Trinidad & Tobago, for example.So we are puzzled that Dr. Ramsammy would still recommend the use of paraquat-based agro-chemicals, given that this is the leading means of suicide in Guyana. Surely, saving a life takes precedence over any other consideration?TCV is aware of the restrictions in place with respect to paraquat use in Guyana, but the reality is that these restrictions have been ineffective for many obvious reasons, including lack of strict, comprehensive monitoring on the one hand, and the desire for sales trumping safety on the other. And any awareness programme and safe storage campaign that currently exists have minimal, if any impact. Besides, paraquat continues to be used under hazardous conditions that result in high dermal exposure. These conditions include high temperature and humidity, lack of protective clothing, leaking knapsack sprayers, lack of awareness of hazard, lack of control over the workplace, lack of facilities for washing; or medical treatment, and repeated exposure.Thus TCV continues to urge that the undertaking given by the Pesticide Control Board in early 2015, to roll out an adaption of the Shri Lanka Hazard Reduction Model, be implemented immediately. We also urge that the cabinet distribution programme for farmers be ongoing and continuous, and be accompanied by continuous sensitization and monitoring to ensure its effective usage.Change is one of the very few constants in life. Thus farmers would have no problem in adapting to use of alternatives to paraquat. Besides, as the Pesticide Action Network points out, “There are numerous designs, management, mechanical and cultivation practices, as well as some plant extracts that can be used instead of paraquat, depending on the weed species and the situation”. These include organic, greenhouse and hydroponic farming, which are much more eco-friendly and which are already on the increase in Guyana.For rice farmers, there is the “system of rice intensification” (SRI) method pioneered by French priest Henri de Laulanié in Madagascar in 1983, which is now growing fast as regional governments in China and India join anti-poverty groups like Oxfam to back the method. This method involves stimulating the root system of plants, rather than trying to increase yields in the conventional way by using improved seeds and synthetic fertilizers.Last year, Dennis Miguel, a Filipino farmer, reaped the equivalent of 10.8 tons of rice per hectare, or four times as much rice as that farmer usually grew on that land. Reports from China, India, Southeast Asia and Africa indicate that average yield increases of 20 to 50 percent are regularly achieved by farmers who adopt SRI. In fact, SRI is now being applied to other crops via a process referred to as the System of Crop Intensification.TCV strongly urges the Ministry of Agriculture and the various entities associated with rice farming to seek the expertise to introduce SRI in Guyana. The SRI International Network and Resources Center (SRI-Rice), a program at Cornell University, is a good starting point. The benefits extend beyond lack of need to use paraquat, and include greater yields at less cost through safer cultivation methods, and more money in the pockets of farmers.Meanwhile, TCV continues to include a module on Pesticide Safety: Purchase, Storage, Use and Disposal in our workshops, and we do plan to also do the same in the lay counsellor programme when it is launched next year. As well, we once again express the hope that Government would find it possible to join hands with us when this programme is launched.Finally, we remind readers that you can help us make this programme possible by donating to our gofundme account at https://www.gofundme.com/lay-counselor-training-program.Sincerely,Caribbean Voice
Dear Editor,This is a quotation from the Bible that can be found on the big white rock next to the huge grey cross outside the St. Stanislaus College school compound on Brickdam.While most of us just walk past without wondering, the students who attended St. Stanislaus College in the eighties always knew that the school suffered a huge sacrifice in this nation’s struggle for democracy. The rock is in memory of the ultimate sacrifice paid by Father Darke.As a child growing up during tumultuous times in Guyana, we always had in our home a newspaper called the Catholic Standard, a vanguard for democracy and principle.As a people, as a nation, we must not forget the price that was paid for democracy and freedom, and we must never forget our heroes — those who paid with their lives for our freedom. We must not forget the value of democracy and the reason that we fight so hard for it. It is an essential foundation of political and economic stability.Participation in free and fair elections is the cornerstone by which we, the people, express our consent to be governed. This right was not handed to us on a platter by President Carter in 1992. We had to fight for this right to free and fair elections. While the children watched in awe and in fear during the long years of the PNC dictatorship, the upright citizens of this country waged a war against injustice and paid, a heavy price for the freedoms that we now enjoy.The people of this country cannot therefore offer a lukewarm response when our hard-earned freedoms are threatened. The first dent that President Granger put on our confidence was in hand-picking a Chairman of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM). The Guyana Elections Commission provides the mechanism through which the will of the people is determined. Our political culture demands consensus in the choice of a Chairman of GECOM.Political culture is important, because it represents our collective standards, values, virtues and wisdom; it is what we embody as a people. It is what the children learn from the adults, and it represents our baseline of standards – what we stand for as a nation – without it having to be articulated expressly. The people of this country are trying to improve political culture and take it to higher standards. Trampling of hard-earned political culture is the work of the ignorant. Ignorance must not rule over us, nor must the ignorant be given an opportunity to rule in the future, for the consequences of political power in the hands of the ignorant are already well known to us.We need skilled, competent leaders who are invested in service to the people. If there is one thing that we know well in this country, it is that politicians speak with forked tongues. We must therefore interrogate their utterances. Politicians must prove to us that they are genuine. We must not ingenuously believe them when they speak.President Granger made a grand speech about Local Government Elections (LGE). He said LGE is important to social cohesion. It is an entitlement of the people, and it is our right to select leaders; and on that basis, he therefore cannot postpone LGE. So the President asserts that his push for LGE is because it is a right, and that he is doing it for the benefit of the people and to improve social cohesion.However, the President’s claims are occurring against a backdrop of evidence that shows that there are certain glitches in the matrix. Four Miles, a community located in Region One, made a huge shout out to the Guyanese public at the end of August that the APNU/AFC coalition Government is pushing to form a CDC in titled Amerindian land (Guyana Times, 30th August, 2018).What is going on here, and what does this glitch in the matrix signify? This assault on the Amerindian people was not only against political culture, but it is against the law. The APNU/AFC Coalition continues to pursue its agenda as if it is above the law. This continuous aggravation by politicians against the people of this country is not appreciated. We elect statesmen and women to uphold the law and maintain and improve political stability, not to trample it.Further, CitizensReport (June 13,2018), informed the public that the APNU/AFC Coalition clandestinely changed two Amerindian Village Councils into Neighbourhood Democratic Councils without consulting the toshaos or residents of Aranaputa and Annai.Another glitch in the matrix was the clash between President Granger and the National Toshaos’ Council on Amerindian land rights. Anna Correia, in her article in the Guyana Times (April 9, 2017), asserted that this clash is part of a larger PNC philosophy geared to crush multiculturalism. Diversity is recognised worldwide as a virtue and a natural law that protects the human species against extinction.A fourth glitch in the matrix was the accusation, and the evidence provided, by the PPP/C that gerrymandering of the boundaries was taking place. Minister Bulkan has subsequently accused the PPP/C of trying to delay the LGE. Well, we don’t believe the Minister. The PPP/C has a valid claim.Maybe what can help us to understand President Granger’s resentment against the Amerindian people, his urgency for LGE and the motivation behind the gerrymandering is the opening paragraph of his article (on sale at Austin’s for $400) titled ‘Guyana’s Military Veterans.’ The paragraph begins with a sub-title: Promised Land.And continues thus: “In October, 1970, Forbes Burnham, Prime Minister of Defence and Chairman of the Guyana Defence Board reiterated his pledge that all military veterans would be entitled to a grant of state land once they had retired honourably from the Guyana Defence Force (GDF).”The speech of Forbes Burnham “..I made an offer to the GDF that any long-serving GDF men, and women too, who retired or left the service honourably..would be given an opportunity, if they wish, along with others, to have control of large plots of land in the hinterland for development, agriculture, particularly, though there is no objection to other forms of use of the land.”Granger continued in his writing “..four Defence Ministers, and 28 years later, no land settlement scheme has materialised and the misplaced satisfaction of military veterans has turned to scepticism.”So, maybe President Granger’s passion for LGE is not so much for upholding the rights of the citizens, but for a dream for Amerindian lands crafted before many of us were born in an era of state control and dictatorship. If so, the Government is pursuing an agenda outside of the responsibilities given to it by the citizens of this nation. No government must feel that the people of this country are without courage, for thirst and hunger for justice flows through our veins, and a passion for righteousness ignites our heart.Sincerely,Sandra Khan
The Guyana Public Service Union (GPSU) said it plans to take legal action over the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC) over the alleged withholding of union dues from employees for several months.From left: Mortimer Livan, Dawn Gardener and other executives of the GPSU during Thursday’s press conferenceThe GPSU has denied that GGMC workers have opted to end their membership with the Union. In fact, GPSU executive Mortimer Livan debunked a newspaper article that sought to draw that conclusion.“Completely contrary to the headline story there has been no breakaway from GPSU representation,” Livan told a news conference on Thursday, while explaining that no resignations were ever submitted.He explained that union dues are statutorily deducted from members’ salaries and handled by the agency concerned and afterwards handed over to the union. Liven said the handing over exercise has not taken place for some months now, and the GPSU is not assuming that GGMC workers did not pay dues.However, the GPSU executive noted that the dues were deducted from workers’ salaries premised on the authorisation they submitted to the GPSU which instructed management to make the deductions. This, Livan said, was in keeping with the rules of the GPSU and to pay the unions such amounts.But that is not the case, as the Union claimed it has evidence that these amounts that are being deducted from the GGMC are being “arbitrarily and unlawfully withheld.”Another GPSU executive, Dawn Gardener said although it was reported that the workers made the request to have the monies deducted, the GPSU has not received any letter of resignations.“The GPSU wishes to state that it has been persistent in its representation of the workers of the GGMC in a range of matters pertaining to their conditions of service,” she explained.Gardener said repeated requests have been made for the GGMC to engage the Union on critical health and safety matters. However, the Union is still awaiting confirmation of a date of such a meeting.The GPSU official said once the meeting is finalised, it intends to raise various work-related issues which prevailed because of the negligence and incompetence of the former branch executives.“We stand, as well, prepared to engage our members at the GGMC on such matters as they would wish to discuss with us and continue to work with in pursuit of solutions,” she added.The Union has already written the GGMC to meet and discuss this issue. However, if the matter is not resolved, the GPSU plans to proceed with legal action in two weeks’ time.
Newcastle defender Steven Taylor 1 Newcastle defender Steven Taylor’s season could be over after he suffered a suspected ruptured Achilles tendon.The 28-year-old, who had earlier given his side the lead, limped off the pitch an hour into the Magpies’ 3-3 Premier League draw with Burnley at St James’ Park on Thursday afternoon and acting manager John Carver later revealed the club’s medics are fearing the worst.Carver said: “Unfortunately, we have lost Steven Taylor. It looks like he has ruptured his Achilles tendon – and it’s not the one he did previously, so I think that’s the end of him now for the season.“I have known Steven since he was in the Centre of Excellence and he is a great lad. It was great for him to get the goal at a set-play, it was set up for him.“But when he landed, you could tell the way he landed it was something to do with the calf or Achilles and unfortunately it’s not looking good.”
Gaz Coombes 1 Ecah week, a leading band or musician takes our special talkSPORT Q&A. Up today, it’s Gaz Coombes…1) What’s your favourite talkSPORT Show and why?I like listening to Darren Gough and Adrian Durham on Drivetime. It’s always on in the car, and I love Adrian’s anger!2) talkSPORT gives you your own show, what’s it’s called and what’s it about?It would be called ‘United with Coombes’ – we would only chat about Man United, but only let City fans call in!3) Who are the greatest football team in the land?Manchester United4) Who is the most rock ‘n’ roll player playing the beautiful game right now?There are a lot of beards around at the minute, so a lot of them are starting to look like they’re in folk bands! For rock ‘n’ roll attitude it has to be Mario Balotelli – he’s a rebel!5) If you were put in charge of the pre-match entertainment for the FA Cup final at Wembley, what band do you want playing live?I’d have Iggy Pop, Elvis, Lou Reed and Sugarbabes all sharing the stage.6) Who’s gonna sing the National Anthem?Shane MacGowan7) What track are the players walking down the tunnel and onto the pitch to?YMCA by The Village People8) What’s on the stereo in the dressing room to psyche the players up?Loser by Beck9) You build your own rock ‘n’ roll five-a-side team, who’s in it?I want a tough team – Iggy Pop, Frank Black, Sly Stone, Keith Moon and Rod Stewart. Rod’s got skills!10) You get to pick one footballer to work as roadie with your band. Who is it and what do you have them doing? I’d get Chris Smalling as a bodyguard. He could elbow people out of the way and generally use his defensive prowess to protect my honour.11) What’s going on with you as an artist at the moment?My second solo album, ‘Matador’ is released on January 26. Then I’m heading out on tour in February. Gaz Coombes new album ‘Matador’ is released on January 26, 2015. For more info, go to www.gazcoombes.com
“I see some posturing to let them know a strike is still a tool that can be used, but it’s like bleeding both patients in the negotiations with leeches,” he said. “It would bleed both sides to death.”160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! DETROIT – As United Auto Workers union members prepared for a possible strike Friday against General Motors Corp., analysts said a short-term walkout probably wouldn’t cause too much financial pain but could hurt the automaker’s launch of some critical 2008 vehicles. Negotiations were under way Friday afternoon ahead of the midnight deadline to agree on a new contract, GM spokesman Dan Flores said. “We are fully committed to working with the UAW to develop solutions together to address the competitive challenges facing General Motors,” he said. “We remain focused on reaching a tentative agreement as soon as possible.” Union officials said they were told to expect a phone call from Detroit about 10 p.m. EDT (7 p.m. PDT) telling them whether they should strike or stay on the job. The UAW chose GM as its lead company and possible strike target Thursday. Typically, the union negotiates a contract with the lead company and then presses the other two Detroit automakers to accept the same terms. Ford Motor Co. and Chrysler LLC have extended their contracts indefinitely, although talks are continuing and either side could break off the contract extension with three days’ notice. The UAW could strike GM after the midnight deadline, or the two sides could continue negotiating and workers would be covered by the terms of the old contract. Jim Graham, the president of UAW Local 1112 in Lordstown, Ohio, said his local union was awaiting word from the union and was ready to strike at midnight Friday. GM had a 65-day supply of vehicles at the end of August, slightly lower than the 67-day average for the U.S.-based automakers, according to Ward’s AutoInfoBank. Paul Taylor, chief economist for the National Automobile Dealers Association, said the ideal is a 60-day supply, so that indicates GM didn’t build up its inventory in anticipation of a strike. Taylor said a short strike could actually help GM reduce its inventory of pickups. Right now, the Chevrolet Silverado stands at a 90-day supply, higher than the industry average of 81 days for pickups. GM announced last month that it plans to cut 1,200 jobs at one of the plants that makes the Silverado, and a strike could speed that process. But Taylor said a longer strike, or a strike that could hurt hot-selling vehicles, would be disastrous. The Buick Enclave crossover, for example, has only a 24-day supply and is leading a revival of the Buick brand. Taylor said Asian automakers have enough inventory – an average supply of 45 days – to pick up the slack if GM’s supply diminished, which would also hurt the company.
1 Liverpool target Samir Handanovic could yet agree a new contract with Inter Milan and snub a move to the Premier League.The Slovenia international has been strongly tipped to leave the San Siro as he has yet to finalise a new deal and can walk away as a free agent at the end of the season.Liverpool have been linked with a move for the talented 30-year-old goalkeeper as Brendan Rodgers looks to create more competition for first choice Simon Mignolet, while Roma have also been monitoring his progress.But reports in Italy now suggest Handanovic could be on the verge of signing a new contract with Inter and could pledge his long-term future to the Italian giants.Handanovic’s agent Federico Pastorello, speaking on Tuttosport, said: “We’re talking with Inter about the renewal.“As for Roma, it’s not true that I’ve spoken with [director Walter] Sabatini.” Samir Handanovic