A Fusion of Sci-Fi and Heavy Industry Innovation, Flagship XCMG Machinery Equipment Features in Sci-Fi Blockbuster “The Wandering Earth II”

XUZHOU, China, Jan. 28, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — A fusion of sci-fi adventure and heavy industry innovation, a flagship fleet of customized XCMG Machinery (“XCMG”, SHE:000425) equipment is featured in the China-made sci-fi blockbuster “The Wandering Earth II” directed by Frant Gwo, which opened in movie theaters on Chinese New Year’s Day, and will be released in the countries and regions including North America, UK, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, etc. starting from today.

A Fusion of Sci-Fi and Heavy Industry Innovation, Flagship XCMG Machinery Equipment, A Fleet of 61 Units Equipment of 42 Models, Features in Sci-Fi Blockbuster “The Wandering Earth II”, which to be Released on Jan. 28th, 2023 in the US, Canada, UK, Ireland, Australia, etc.

From the “space elevator” soaring across the earth and sky to the thrilling “air combat,” XCMG equipment journeys from behind the scenes to onstage in the prequel to 2019’s ”The Wandering Earth”, which became one of the highest grossing non-English movies ever. Leveraging its comprehensive product portfolio and solutions in hoisting, earthmoving, road, aerial work, sanitation, safety and emergency rescue, XCMG has provided a wide range of operational and transformable machinery equipment for the UEG (United Earth Government) in the film.

“As China’s premier company of industrial design, we came up with several product design proposals in two days after receiving the assignment and selected the best solution with the directors. As you’ll see in the film, we achieved ideal results.  These dazzling pieces of ‘equipment of the future’ were not just for cinematic show, they were inspired by our real-life products that are breaking new ground every day,” said Zhang Han, the industrial designer from XCMG.

XCMG provided 61 units of equipment of 42 models, more than 400 sets of spare parts and workshop props and 61 sets of 3D models over the course of film production, from scheduling, painting, equipment to personnel, logistics, to on-site execution and more. A total of 319 XCMG staff worked on the project.

One of the most coveted pieces of equipment from the film is the ET120 walking excavator, also known as the “steel mantis.” Designed for emergency rescue in complex terrain environments and at disaster-stricken sites, the ET120 can “walk” the plateau mountains, woodlands, ravines, swamps and alpine as if it’s on firm earth, while equipped for installing various tools to perform different tasks such as excavation, lifting, logging, fire extinguishing, crushing, grabbing and drilling at altitudes of up to 4,500 meters and temperatures of minus 40 degrees Celsius.

In addition, the film features dozens of innovative technologies that XCMG has developed for applications in extreme conditions, and over a third of the equipment in the film is unmanned and new energy models, including the AGV.

“The ‘steel mantis’ in the film is the ‘transformer’ of real life, and as you’ll see in the movie, XCMG brings sci-fi to reality through the wonders of our industrial engineering, so I’m very proud of what we have created,” said Gwo.

From introducing product technologies from abroad to mastering core technologies of breakthrough significance, XCMG, has established the most cutting-edge R&D through global collaboration to become one of the top three construction manufacturers in the world.

Photo – https://mma.prnewswire.com/media/1991543/A_Fusion_Sci_Fi_Heavy_Industry_Innovation_Flagship_XCMG_Machinery_Equipment.jpg

Foreign Minister Pandor thanks EU for supporting South Africa’s developmental agenda

PRETORIA, South Africa says it appreciates the European Union’s (EU) continued support of the development cooperation aligned to the National Development Plan (NDP) and the backing it received during the COVID-19 pandemic and the creation of the local mRNA vaccine technology transfer hub.

“This support and partnership enhance Africa’s own capacities,” the Department of International Relations and Cooperation, Dr Naledi Pandor, said.

These were Pandor’s opening remarks during the 15th South Africa-European Union Ministerial Dialogue, currently underway in Pretoria. Pandor was speaking alongside EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Joseph Borrell.

“I hope that during our engagement today we will be able to review all the opportunities for enhancing two-way trade and increasing investment under the existing bilateral and multilateral frameworks,” she said.

“We also greatly appreciate the EU partnership at the regional level and continental level, which through our strategic partnership, can also be enhanced to be more effective.”

She told delegates that the bilateral engagements and events on Thursday, 26 January 2022, were most productive and successful.

These include the ceremonial signing of a number of partnerships, most notably the South Africa-European Union Multi-Annual Indicative Programme; the centrepiece of the strategic relationship between the country and the union, and an integral instrument in the EU’s support for South Africa’s development priorities.

According to the Minister, the delegates also spoke about peace and security issues and developments.

“Our discussions will no doubt contribute to how we seek to address all these pressing challenges through our various levels of engagement including at the United Nations (UN) with our shared commitment to multilateralism, democratic principles and the Rule of Law,” she said, adding that strengthening the UN system is a priority.

“For the first time, the various engagements under the Strategic Partnership are taking place as they were meant to be synchronised.”

She said the parties will soon receive feedback on the South Africa-EU Joint Cooperation Council (JCC), which took place in South Africa on 7 December 2022.

This comes after several decisions were taken to reflect current realities and priorities.

The delegates also discussed the preparations for the 8th South Africa-European Union Summit, which South Africa will host in the first half of 2023.

The summit will touch on political and security cooperation; cooperation in international fora; trade and investment as well as financial flows.

“Regarding the latter issue, South Africa appreciates the technical assistance received from the EU related to the possible greylisting of South Africa by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).”

This is after President Cyril Ramaphosa signed two Acts in December 2022, which it is hoped will assist the country make progress to avoid such a greylisting, which Pandor believes would have disastrous consequences.

Pandor said she also looks forward to addressing global and local challenges, focusing on the Just Energy Transition, Green Hydrogen, health, education, science, technology and innovation.

“All the agenda items are relevant to the strategic partnership including its newer areas of engagement. EU support in these areas can help move South Africa forward on a path of sustainable development.”

Source: Nam News Network

South Africa: New swine fever outbreak confirmed in Gauteng

GAUTENG (South Africa), South Africa’s Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development has confirmed a new outbreak of African Swine Fever (ASF) on a farm in Gauteng.

The department said the farm has been put under quarantine and the Provincial Veterinary Services instituted forward and back-tracing investigations to identify any properties that could have had direct or indirect contact with the affected farm.

The department said the source of the infection on the farm has not yet been identified, but “it is believed that the infection was already on the farm from mid-December”.

“Farms in Gauteng, North West and Free State have been placed under precautionary quarantine as a result of this. The ASF status of these farms will be confirmed before precautionary quarantine can be lifted,” the department said in a statement on Friday.

Outbreaks of swine fever started in the previously ASF free areas of South Africa in 2019 and these outbreaks eventually affected many areas of the country.

The department noted that the spread of the disease seems to have slowed down, with less new properties becoming infected since October 2022.

“Control measures are based on quarantine and movement controls, with awareness drives to highlight essential biosecurity measures to enable pig owners to prevent infection of their pigs. This outbreak of ASF on a farm with good biosecurity measures in place again illustrates that the virus is highly contagious,” the department said.

The department has reiterated its call to all pig farmers and pig keepers to only buy pigs directly from known healthy herds, and to prevent contact between their pigs and other pigs or wildlife.

Visitors have also been discouraged from coming into the area where pigs are being kept.

“Anyone who has contact with pigs should wash their hands before and after handling the pigs. Before moving to other farms, one should ensure that they have thoroughly showered and to only use clean clothes, shoes, and equipment,” the department said.

The department has also emphasised that ASF is a controlled disease in terms of the Animal Diseases Act, 1984 (Act 35 of 1984), “which means that all cases or suspicion of ASF must be reported to the State veterinary services”.

“Pig owners are encouraged to be extra vigilant and to report any increased pig deaths or unusual symptoms to the local State veterinary office. All pig owners are also reminded that Section 11 of the Animal Diseases Act makes every animal keeper responsible to prevent the spread of disease from their animals or land to other properties.

“The importance of biosecurity is again emphasised, both to protect your own animals, and to prevent the inadvertent spread to other pigs. Veterinarians are urged to rule out ASF whenever there is increased mortality on a farm,” the department advised.

Source: Nam News Network

‘He’s Close to Us’: Wheelchair Users in Africa Await Pope

GOMA, CONGO — When Pope Francis arrives in Congo and South Sudan next week, thousands of people will take special note of a gesture more grounded than the sign of the cross. Watching from their wheelchairs, they will relate to the way he uses his.

The pope, who began using a wheelchair last year, is visiting two countries where years of conflict have disabled many, and yet they are among the world’s most difficult places to find accessibility and understanding. His visit is heartening Catholics and non-Catholics alike.

“We know that it’s a suffering, but it also comforts us to see a grand personality like the pope using a wheelchair,” said Paul Mitemberezi, a market vendor in Goma, at the heart of the eastern Congo region threatened by dozens of armed groups. “Sometimes it gives us the courage to hope that this isn’t the end of the world and one can survive.”

Mitemberezi, a Catholic and a father, has been disabled since he was 3 because of polio. He works to support his family because he can’t imagine a life of begging. On the way to market, his three-wheeled chair crunches the stones of unpaved roads. Without a ramp at home, he must leave the brightly painted vehicle outdoors, at risk of theft.

Every morning, before he leaves for basketball practice, he makes sure the chair’s still there before crawling out his front door. “It is my legs, which helps me to live,” he said. He applies a bicycle pump to the wheels and is off, weaving through traffic of motorcycles and trucks.

Pope Francis is still adjusting to a life that Mitemberezi has long accepted. The pope was first seen publicly in a wheelchair in May, with an aide pushing it. The pope, at age 86, never propels himself. Sometimes he walks with a cane, but he uses the chair for longer distances and has a wheelchair lift to get on and off planes.

Francis has insisted that his mobility limitations don’t affect his ability to be pope, saying “You lead with your head, not your knee.” He has lamented how today’s “throwaway culture” wrongly marginalizes disabled people. He makes it a point to visit places serving the disabled during his foreign trips, and routinely spends time greeting wheelchair users at the end of his general audiences.

“No disability — temporary, acquired or permanent — can change the fact that we are all children of the one Father and enjoy the same dignity,” Francis wrote in his annual message for the U.N. International Day of Persons with Disabilities in December. He said people with different abilities enrich the church and teach it to be more humane.

Such messages are warmly awaited by wheelchair users in South Sudan, where a five-year civil war killed hundreds of thousands of people. As in Congo, data is lacking on just how many people are disabled by conflict or other means.

While the road leading to the Vatican’s embassy in the South Sudan capital, Juba, was paved by city authorities this month for ease of travel, residents who use wheelchairs said they have long gone without easy access to schools, health centers, toilets and other public facilities.

The Vatican’s ambassador to Congo, Archbishop Ettore Balestrero, said he believed the sight of a wheelchair-using pope could be a powerful teaching moment in a culture where disabilities are often viewed with suspicion and superstition.

Families often abandon their disabled children, he said.

Seeing someone like the pope suffer should make Francis more approachable for people during his visit, Balestrero said. “They identify, in a way, even more with him.”

Source: Voice of America

South Africa, India collaborate to reintroduce cheetah in India

PRETORIA, South Africa and India have signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in the re-introduction of Cheetah to the Asian country.

“In terms of the agreement, an initial batch of 12 cheetah are scheduled to be flown from South Africa to India in February 2023. The cats will join the eight cheetah introduced to India from Namibia during 2022,” the Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment said.

Restoring cheetah populations is a priority for India and will have vital and far-reaching conservation consequences, which aim to achieve a number of ecological objectives, including re-establishing the function role of cheetah within their historical range and improving the enhancing the livelihood options and economies of the local communities.

Following the import of the 12 cheetah in January, the plan is to translocate a further 12 annually for the next eight to 10 years.

“The initiative to reintroduce cheetah to a former range state following the local extinction of this iconic species due to over hunting and loss of habitat in the last century is being carried out following the request received from the Government of the Republic of India,” the department said.

This multi-disciplinary international programme is being coordinated by the department in collaboration with the South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI), South African National Parks (SANParks), the Cheetah Range Expansion Project, and the Endangered Wildlife Trust (EWT) in South Africa.

They will be working with the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) and the Wildlife Institute of India (WII).

“The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Reintroduction of Cheetah to India facilitates cooperation between the parties to establish a viable and secure cheetah population in India; promotes conservation and ensures that expertise is shared and exchanged, and capacity built, to promote cheetah conservation.

“This includes human-wildlife conflict resolution, capture and translocation of wildlife and community participation in conservation in the two countries.

“In terms of the MoU, the countries will collaborate and exchange best practices in large carnivore conservation through the transfer of technology, training of professionals in management, policy, and science, and to establish a bilateral custodianship arrangement for cheetah translocated between the two countries,” the department said.

The terms of the MoU will be reviewed every five years to ensure it remains relevant.

Source: Nam News Network