Violence against journalists continues with a murder, beating and shooting

first_img News September 15, 2006 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Violence against journalists continues with a murder, beating and shooting Pakistani TV anchor censored after denouncing violence against journalists Receive email alerts News Reporters Without Borders said it was deeply saddened by the murder of Maqbool Hussain Sail of the Online news agency, who was gunned down today in Dera Ismael Khan, in North-West Frontier Province, as he was going to see a local politician at his home. The killing followed attacks on at least two other journalists in the past few days.“These attacks show the degree of the hostility to which the Pakistani press is exposed,” the press freedom organisation said. “They come amid demonstrations by journalists for more pay and better protection from the government against criminals who take advantage of the climate of impunity to intimidate the media. We call for the arrest and punishment of those responsible.”Sail, 32, was gunned down by two men on motorcycle on the road leading to the home of Nawab Azek, the head of the local branch of the Pakistan People’s Party. He was hit six times and died while being rushed to hospital. Noting that he was a Shiite, the police said he could have been the victim of sectarian violence by members of the majority Sunni community.C.R. Shamsi, the deputy editor of the Urdu-language daily Ausaf and former secretary-general of the Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists, was attacked by the federal labour minister’s staff in Islamabad two days ago when he tried to talk to the minister about a national demonstration by journalists that was due to take place soon.The minister told Shamsi he should come and talk to him about it in his office. When Shamsi insisted on telling him immediately, the minister told his driver and bodyguard to “teach him a lesson.” Shamsi’s ear drum was seriously injured in the attack.The same day, two men opened fire on the home of Shakil Anjum, the correspondent of the English-language daily, The News, in the province of Punjab, injuring his son and his nephew. Anjum suspects the attack was ordered by a local political who was the subject of one of his recent articles.Meanwhile reporter Mushtaq Ghuman of the Islamabad-based Business Recorder said he had received threatening phone calls and suspected Intelligence Bureau agents were trying to put him on his guard about an article he was writing concerning the prime minister. Help by sharing this information RSF_en PakistanAsia – Pacific Organisation PakistanAsia – Pacific center_img to go further Follow the news on Pakistan Pakistani supreme court acquits main suspect in Daniel Pearl murder April 21, 2021 Find out more June 2, 2021 Find out more January 28, 2021 Find out more News Pakistani journalist critical of the military wounded by gunfire Newslast_img read more

Man faces prison for benefit fraud

first_imgNewsLocal NewsMan faces prison for benefit fraudBy admin – January 9, 2013 667 WhatsApp Linkedin Previous articleRegeneration funding guaranteed for 2014Next articleResidents put brakes on council road plan admin Twitter Printcenter_img Facebook A BENCH warrant has been issued for the arrest of a Galway man who was convicted of defrauding the State of job seekers allowance  at Limerick District Court last week. Joseph Hallinan, with an address at 12 Kirwan’s Court, Galway and formerly of Dooradoyle had been claiming job seekers allowance from March 20, 2007 to May 31, 2011. He was employed by Dell between August 2007 and February 2008 but still claimed the benefits he was not entitled to.Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter Sign Up Inspectors from the department of social protection said that Mr Hallinan had made four claims on September 11, October 9 and November 6, 2007 and January 21, 2008 without declaring he was working in Dell at the time.The overpayments totaled €4,713 and Mr Hallinan agreed to repay €50 per week to settle the claim but he failed to made the repayments.Convicting the defendant in his absence, Judge O’Kelly issued a bench warrant to have him brought to court for a prison sentence to be imposed. Advertisement Emaillast_img read more

Commission Will Hear Overview of Marine Fueling Facility Program

first_imgFacebook0Tweet0Pin0OLYMPIA, WA – The Port of Olympia Commission will hear the first overview of marine fueling facilities at their regular meeting on Aug. 13, 5:30 p.m., at the LOTT Clean Water Alliance Board Room, 500 Adams Street NE in downtown Olympia.“We received a petition of more than 800 signatures requesting the Port to open a marine fueling station in Budd Inlet,” said Jeff Davis, Commission President. “So we asked staff to take a hard look at what would be required to make such a project successful for residential and visiting boaters, the downtown community and Thurston County citizens. We also asked the Port’s Citizen Advisory Committee to develop a public participation plan to ensure that we have community involvement.“We invite everyone who is interested to come to the meeting on Monday the 13th, listen to the alternatives, and give us your feedback. We want to hear from you,” Davis said.The presentation is expected to include a summary of work to date on the Port’s Marine Fueling Facility Program, including a history of marine fueling facilities in the Budd Inlet area, various fuel dock alternatives and evaluations, and general program financing issues.last_img read more

Beacon Hill Country Club Earns Eco-Friendly Badge

first_imgBy Chris Rotolo |ATLANTIC HIGHLANDS – The game of golf is played among natural beauty, and Beacon Hill Country Club is doing its part to preserve and enhance its course and property. The ACSP provides an educational service to help existing golf courses develop effective conservation and wildlife enhancement programs, an effort that Mueller credits golf course superintendent Tim Meyer for spearheading. Earlier this month Beacon Hill Country Club received recognition in environmental planning from the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program (ACSP) for Golf Courses, a worldwide initiative administered by Audubon International which is designed to help golf courses and open green spaces maintain their property to higher and healthier standards.“This is certainly a designation that we’re ver y proud of,” said Alexander Mueller, Beacon Hill Country Club general manager. “It’s always been a goal of ours to maintain a course that is environmentally friendly and harmonious with nature, but with this program we saw an opportunity to increase our standards even further.” One club member, Robert Breeden, has been an advocate for ACSP enrollment and said he’s witnessed a concerted effort by his fellow members to live up to the standards set by the program.“I can speak for our membership when I say that we’re proud and thrilled to be ACSP certified,” Breeden said. “This is a significant accomplishment, a three-year process, in which we have to demonstrate environmental leadership in the golf industry. To do that takes an effort from all of our members. And now we have to continue to educate our fellow golfers and club members about the benefits of maintaining this effort.”A bird watcher as well as an avid golfer, Breeden spoke of the importance of not only maintaining the club’s efforts for a healthier environment but sustaining it for generations to come.“Cemeteries and golf courses are really the only green spaces left in suburbia, so we have a big responsibility to take care of ours and ensure that it’s taken care of when we’re no longer here,” Breeden said. “Part of the experience of playing golf is enjoying the natural surroundings. And being part of the ACSP is only going to benefit our grounds, our golfers and the game itself.”This article first appeared in the June 21 – 28, 2018 print edition of The Two River Times. Beacon is the 19th golf course in New Jersey to be included in ACSP and is the first course in Monmouth County to earn the designation.“There is a movement amongst courses taking place around the world, especially in areas of this country near the Everglades and in other coastal regions where people are really making an effort to take care of these sensitive environments,” Mueller said. “We’re excited to be piggybacking off those efforts and joining the movement.” After the environmental plan is designed, approved and implemented, properties in the program may apply for recognition in wildlife and habitat management, chemical use reduction and safety, water conservation, water quality management, and outreach and education by demonstrating they have met minimum requirements for each category.Once the course has been recognized in all categories, they are designated a Certified Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary. By joining and participating in the ACSP, Beacon Hill Country Club will be involved in projects that enhance habitat for wildlife and preserve natural resources for the benefit of the local community. These projects may include placing nesting boxes for cavity-nesting birds such as bluebirds and swallows, utilizing integrated pest management techniques, conserving water and maintaining food and cover for wildlife.With an 88-acre course that includes pockets of wetlands, several freshwater streams and irrigation ponds and various local wildlife, Mueller believes these projects will only be successful if the club’s membership adopts a similar mindset.last_img read more

Even Lions . . . B.C. Lions, catch fish on Kootenay Lake

first_imgThey were definitely amazed by the sights and the fishing.  They do want to come back and hopefully bring the rest of the team with them next time. Rainbows up to 22 pounds & Dollies up to 15 pounds have been caught lately.  We’re also seeing lots of smaller fish starting to feed. Now that the insects are out and floating on the water, we should see more and more surface action.  Looking forward to the next six weeks.What are they biting on ???Since most of the fish are coming to the surface to feed, we are mainly running our bucktail flies.  My favorite colors have been: black/wht, grey/wht, green/wht.  Common numbers have been: 210, 215, 228 Also using my favorite Lyman plugs and Apex lures on the calmer days.  My favorites have been:  black/silver, silver/gold, blue/green or lucky numbers of #10, #53, #55, #135. We’ve also managed a few fish on the downriggers.  Still using the old flasher/hoochie combo for the dollies.  But we’re catching lots on my favorite plugs again down deep.  Magic depths have been 60′, 80′, and 100′. The water temperature is rising slowly.  Lately I’ve had readings between 41-44 degrees.  So, it shouldn’t be long before these fish really turn on!! My Favorite time of year has arrived. Gerrard’s are Spawning It’s also that time of year when these amazing fish head up to spawn.  The latest counts have us predicting another great run.  The count as of  May 3 saw over 700 fish at the grounds.Looks like the beginning of another great run.  If you get a chance to see this amazing sight, it is well worth the trip. There’s usually fish up at the bridge until about the second week of May.  So, you might still have a chance to check it out.  Maybe a nice Mother’s Day picnic.  Always worth the trip. A little tip for everybody:  try to get up there earlier in the morning before the wind picks up.  It makes for better viewing. If you want to check on the latest numbers, go to the ministry’s web site for a current count.  Check it out at: next month or two should be fantastic fishing. So, Let’s Get Out There !! Tight lines…..Kerry Reed, Reel Adventures Even managed to take a few of the Grey Cup champions B.C. Lions out on the boat while they were in town. They only had a couple of hours to spare, but the fish co-operated.  They hooked into four or five fish that all seemed to be between 8-10 pounds.  A good introduction to Kootenay Lake for them.  It’s time for the latest fishing report from Kerry Reed at Reel Adventures Charters.Kootenay Lake Spring fishing is here.Although the weather might not indicate it. The water has been rising constantly.  Now we just need the temperatures to start rising and the good fishing will follow. The higher water means more debris floating around in the water.  Which means more food on the surface.  This should start to bring most of the fish to the surface to feed. The forecast looks pretty good for the next week or so. My favorite time is coming up.  Usually by the middle of May, our water temperature has warmed up and the fish begin to get aggressive. We have had some good days lately with five to 12 fish being caught in a day.  Also had some tougher days with only a couple.  Every day is different.last_img read more

Gorn backstops Leafs to sixth-straight win, Beaver Valley dumps Rebels

first_imgSix in a row! Six in a row!Billy Gorn stopped 28 shots to backstop the Nelson Leafs to a 5-0 Kootenay International Junior Hockey League road victory over the Spokane Braves Friday night in the Lilac City.The win was the sixth consecutive win for the Green and White, setting up a showdown Saturday in the Bavarian City against KIJHL heavyweight, Kimberley Dynamiters.Colum Mcgualey, Andy Fitzpatrick, Logan Wullum and Aigne-McGeady-Bruce with a pair, scored for Nelson. The Leafs held period leads of 3-0 and 5-0 as the visitors peppered Blake Norman with 51 shots in the Braves net.Gorn, 20, continues to lead by example in the Nelson goal after being acquired before the recent BC Amateur Hockey roster deadline. The Edmonton native is undefeated as a member of the Nelson Leafs goaltending tandem that includes Devin Allen.Nelson moves into a third-place tie with Castlegar Rebels in Murdoch Division standings, and trails Grand Forks Border Bruins by a point for second.Castlegar lost 6-2 in Fruitvale Friday to Murdoch leading Beaver Valley Nitehawks in a penalty-filled contest.Jaxen Gemmell led the Hawks with three points, including two goals while Sam Swanson and Mitch Foyle each had two points.Ed Lindsay and Logan Styler scored for Castlegar.Meanwhile, Grand Forks Border Bruins lost 2-1 to the Creston Valley Thunder Cats in the East Kootenay City.last_img read more

Benitez: Torres just needed confidence

first_imgChelsea interim manager Rafael Benitez praised Fernando Torres following the Blues’ 8-0 thrashing of Aston Villa.Torres’ early opener – a great header from Cesar Azpilicueta’s cross – was the striker’s seventh goal in six matches.And Benitez told Sky Sports: “We were talking to Cesar Azpilicueta about this – about putting the ball there for Fernando and it was a great header.“He just needed a little confidence. For strikers that is key. He was working hard for the team before but now we are playing well and he has more chances to score.“The main thing is to win games not to score goals. If we keep doing that everything will be easier.”More reaction to follow later.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 Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

Fossil Fumbles Damage Darwinism

first_imgThree recent fossil finds are rearranging Darwin’s tree of life.  Pro-Darwinists will interpret this as pruning; Darwin skeptics will interpret it as uprooting.  Shark heads:  “The earliest known braincase of a shark-like fish has shown some assumptions about the early evolution of vertebrates are ‘completely wrong,’ experts say.  That’s what National Geographic said.  Read all about it: sharks are not more primitive compared to bony fish.  The situation is a lot more complicated.  “This is the first real movement in this part of the evolutionary tree in the last hundred years,” one scientist commented.  The BBC News write-up, however, did not point out the problems.  It merely reported that the fossil is “shedding light on the evolution of jawed vertebrates.”Archaeopteryx, emu?:  Interpreters of the early bird Archaeopteryx have fallen into the bird camp and the reptile camp.  Score a point for the bird team: Science Daily reported on X-ray scanning of the fossil that shows its hearing bones were more bird-like than reptile-like.  It probably heard like a modern emu, they figure.Rolling stones:  Precambrian rocks have long been known to possess wiggly lines.  What are these trace fossils?  Without a body, it was hard to know.  Evolutionists eager to soften the Cambrian Explosion interpreted them as worm trails – the earliest examples of bilaterian (two-sided) animals.  That interpretation has come under fire with the discovery of giant living amoebas that can roll around and produce tracks very similar to those seen in the fossil record.  Both Science1 and Current Biology2 commented on the finding reported last month reported in Current Biology.3  None of them were optimistic.  It appeared that, at least in some cases, the hoped-for traces of complex multicellular life that might have lessened the impact of the Cambrian Explosion were in fact made by single-celled organisms.A footnote on the third item: the original paper by Matz et al actually made things worse for the Darwinians.  The authors suggested that even the Ediacaran biota (08/19/2004, 01/05/2008), the strange plant-like things that preceded the explosion, were not multicellular organisms.  “Our observations also render indirect support to the highly controversial interpretation of the enigmatic Ediacaran biota of the late Precambrian as giant protists,” they said.  If so, it doesn’t suggest the Darwinists hoped the Ediacaran biota would provide transitional forms.  It only sharpens the concussion of the Cambrian explosion: because, except for sponge embryos found in the Precambrian, it means everything prior to the sudden appearance of virtually all the animal phyla consisted of single-celled microbes.1.  Stefan Bengtson and Birger Rasmussen, “New and Ancient Trace Makers,” Science, 16 January 2009: Vol. 323. no. 5912, pp. 346-347; DOI: 10.1126/science.1168794.2.  Jan Pawlowski and Andrew J. Gooday, “Precambrian Biota: Protistan Origin of Trace Fossils?,” Current Biology, Volume 19, Issue 1, 13 January 2009, pp. R28-R30, doi:10.1016/j.cub.2008.11.003.3.  M.V. Matz, T.M. Frank, N.J. Marshall, E.A. Widder and S. Johnsen, “Giant deep-sea protist produces bilaterian-like traces,” Curr. Biol. 18 (9 Dec 2008), pp. 1849?1854.Watch for the release this year of a new documentary on the Cambrian Explosion.  The problem that should have falsified Darwinism in 1859 never went away.  Each new finding shouts that Darwinism has been defeated, and should be tossed into the dustbin of history.    But the pro-Darwinists are unrepentant and stiffnecked.  Listen to what Sid Perkins said in the new Darwin-Birthday Bombast issue of Science News (Jan 31, 2009, 175:3, p. 30).  In an article bluffing that transitional forms are found all over the fossil record (only mentioning Tiktaalik and a particular salamander), he said this about the Cambrian:And many stretches of the fossil record poorly represented in Darwin’s day – such as the Precambrian, an era before the Cambrian period (which began about 542 million years ago and is when much of life’s diversity apparently evolved) – are now more thoroughly populated.  Fortey notes: “For Darwin, the Precambrian was a complete mystery, whereas now we have a tremendously detailed narrative” for that era, much of it gathered in the past few decades.The bluffing and misrepresentation in that paragraph is shocking and irresponsible.  “Apparently evolved” is pure question begging built on imagination.  Sure the Precambrian is “more thoroughly populated” – with microbes, but not with the transitional forms Darwin needed.  Science News, you know, has been a Darwin Party mouthpiece since its founding at the Scopes Trial, when it was a propaganda arm of the new ACLU that sued Tennessee (12/28/2005).  Even secular historians now admit that the whole Scopes affair was a sham to shame religious creationists in the media, which is the only thing the lurid sideshow accomplished.  Would you grant any credibility to scoundrels?(Visited 12 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

The Ediacaran Era May Be a Flawed Concept

first_imgBefore humans arrived, no strata came with “Ediacaran” stamped on them.  Does this human-invented name have any real meaning?  Does it tell time?The so-called Ediacaran era came just before the Cambrian, when all the animal phyla exploded onto the scene.  Actually, that sentence requires believing they were in a time sequence.  To the observer’s eye, Cambrian strata have certain kinds of fossils in them interpreted to represent an era when the first complex animal body plans emerged.  In certain places on earth below strata designated Cambrian, there are odd frond-like organisms that have been named the Ediacaran fauna, so named after a location in Australia where they were first identified.  Below Cambrian implies before Cambrian, simply enough.  But two papers in Geology raised new questions about these beliefs.Buatois and a team harking from Canada and South Africa, writing in Geology, consider the Ediacaran-Cambrian interface “arguably the most important in the stratigraphic column,” noted that the ichnofossil Treptichnus pedum is commonly used to indicate the interface.   They went hunting for this fossil in South Africa and found it in a wide variety of environments:Our study in Fortunian units in the Vanrhynsdorp Group of South Africa shows a broad environmental tolerance for the T. pedum producer in shallow-marine clastic settings. This ichnotaxon is not only present in low-energy offshore wave-dominated marine settings, but it also occurs at considerably shallower water in intertidal and shallow-subtidal zones of tide-dominated systems. T. pedum seems to have high values of peak abundance in the upper offshore and lower intertidal sand flats. In many sections, the Ediacaran-Cambrian transition occurs in successions containing a sequence boundary due to incision of valleys that were filled with coarse-grained deposits of fluvial or estuarine origin, both representing facies that are unsuitable for T. pedum. The range offset of this ichnotaxon is typically greater above sequence boundaries and within transgressive systems tracts, providing some constrains [sic] on its use.Despite these concerns, they believe that “the broad environmental tolerance of T. pedum in shallow-marine clastic settings supports evolutionary innovations rather than facies controls as the main mechanism underlying the observed vertical pattern of distribution of this ichnospecies” in the study area.  In their mind, it “supports” one interpretation over another, despite the constraints.A second paper in Geology asks a more fundamental question: “How well do fossil assemblages of the Ediacara Biota tell time?”  Notice the frequent use of the word interpret in their opening sentences:Patterns of origination, evolution, and extinction of early animal life on this planet are largely interpreted from the fossils of the Precambrian soft-bodied Ediacara Biota, spanning nearly 40 m.y. of the terminal Ediacaran period. Localities containing these fossils are loosely considered as part of either the Avalon, White Sea, or Nama Associations. These associations have been interpreted to have temporal, paleobiogeographic, preservational, and/or paleoenvironmental significance. Surprisingly, elements of all three associations occur within the Ediacara Member of the Rawnsley Quartzite of South Australia.What does it mean to have three associations in one location?  It means serious questions are in order about the interpretation of observed strata as markers of time and evolution:An analysis of over 5000 specimens demonstrates that fossil distribution is strongly controlled by facies and taphonomy rather than time or biogeography and that individual taxa vary considerably in their environmental tolerance and taphonomic integrity. The recognition that these taxa represent organisms living in various distinct environments, both juxtaposed and shared, holds strong implications for our interpretation of the record of early animal life on this planet and questions the biostratigraphic utility of the three associations. Furthermore, although in situ soft-bodied preservation provides a unique perspective on composition of benthic fossil assemblages, the record should not be interpreted as a simple “snapshot”. Fossil beds represent a range of preservational modifications varying from current winnowed census samples of benthic communities at different depths and ecological maturity, to entirely transported assemblages. Unless the appropriate environments and taphonomic conditions are present for certain taxa, the absence of a particular taxon may or may not indicate its extinction in space or time.There’s a lot in that paragraph for doubt.  Geologists cannot simply count fossils.  Unseen geological processes can scramble the mix, winnowing the census, transporting whole assemblages elsewhere.  They ask their fellow geologists to identify “appropriate” environments and taphonomic (fossil-creating) conditions, but they don’t identify who decides what is appropriate.  Eyebrows should rise at their statement that the considerable variation in the environment and “taphonomic integrity” at Ediacaran sites has not just implications, but “strong implications for interpretation of the record of early animal life on this planet”.  That warning could just as well be sounded for the remainder of the fossil record.Notice how they ended by saying that “the absence of a particular taxon may or may not indicate its extinction in space or time.”  The absence of evidence for the notorious Precambrian Rabbit is not evidence of absence.  Who knows without an eyewitness?  Precambrian rabbits may have been hopping in another country at the same time Ediacarans were fossilizing under the sea.  Remember?  You need appropriate taphonomic conditions.  You can’t look at a stratum, they said, as a simple “snapshot” and decide there were no rabbits in this era.  Unseen processes may have been at work winnowing the census or transporting entire assemblages.The key point is that strata designations and their interpretations are highly theory-laden.  It doesn’t matter that most geologists accept the current theory.  The consensus has been wrong many times before.  When you look at evidence, learn to scrape off the labels humans attach to them, and especially the canned interpretations.  Science progresses by perceptive observers who see the anomalies those within the paradigm have been trained to ignore. (Visited 34 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

China Soybean Imports Down

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest BEIJING, China (DTN) — China is likely to finish the 2018-19 marketing year for soybeans importing less than official projections.With the monthly soybean import volume of 8.64 million metric tons (317.5 million bushels) in July and an expectation of 9.1 million metric tons (334.4 million bushels) in August, China is expected to import 82.0 million (3.01 billion bushels) of soybean in 2018/19 crop year, less than the estimation of both USDA and China Ministry of Agriculture.“The market was expecting an import of 9.41 million metric tons earlier, but as the demand for soybean meal and soybean oil are slow in the country, plus the uncertainty of U.S.-China trade relations, some crushers postponed their shipment and end up arriving only 8.64 million metric tons,” said Dr Jun Wang, professor of China Agricultural University.USDA pegged China’s 2018/19 soybean import at 83 million metric tons while China Ministry of Agriculture’s recent estimate was 83.5 million metric tons.China imported a historically high volume of 94.2 million metric tons (3.46 billion bushels) of soybean last crop year. Based on above estimation, the country will import less than 11 million metric tons (418.1 million bushels) of soybeans in the current crop year.Lower soybean imports have not translated into shortages so far, largely due to the impact of African Swine Fever (ASF) as well as an economic slowdown in the country, both of which have reduced market demand. “But, as Brazil soybean export window coming to the end and no U.S. new crop soybeans have been booked by traders yet, markets start to worry about the supply at the end of the year,” said Wang.For the 2019-20 marketing year, China has just 194,000 metric tons of sales booked. Chinese buyers still have 2.8 million metric tons of outstanding sales on the books for the 2018-19 crop year that have yet to ship. The marketing year ends Aug. 31.From the first breakout of ASF a year ago in northeast China, hog farmers had been struggling with the virus. With the recent report from Ministry of Agriculture, hog stocks in the country reduced to 254 million head, compare to 308 million head at the beginning of the year.In a forecast higher than the Chinese government’s official estimates, Rabobank earlier this month projected that the China hog herd could be reduced in half by the end of 2019. Rabobank estimates losses are already close to 40% of China’s hogs.The ripple effect of ASF is driving down feed demand. Statistics from China Feed Association shows a total feed production of 36.3 million metric tons in the first half of this year, a decrease of 14% compare to same time last year. Hog feed production fell 27% in June, compare to the same period of last year.Soybean meal prices have come down. September soybean meal contract in Dalian Commodity Exchange (DCE) reached a high price of RMB 3031 per ton ($429 a ton) in June 4 last year after U.S.-China trade war started. Soybean meal kept a lower price after that, even though soybean import volume was much lower than last year. Today, the price of this contract is RMB 2889 per ton ($409).U.S. SOYBEAN IMPORT IS LIMITED IN BOTH OLD CROP AND NEW CROPU.S.-China trade war led China to put a 25% tariff on U.S. soybeans from last year. Though the Chinese government promised to buy 20 million metric tons of soybean from U.S., the two state-owned companies, COFCO and SinoGrain only bought 14.3 million metric tons.The U.S. And China are expected to hold further negotiations in September, but Chinese buyers have no idea of what import tariff they will face this fall importing U.S. soybeans.“From last October, there were 174 bulk U.S. soybean shipments carrying about 60,000 metric tons (2.2 million bushels) of soybean each inspected and shipped to China, while there are another 26 cargos waiting to be loaded at PNW,” said Wang, “But, nobody knows how many cargos Chinese crushers will be able to buy in the 2019/20 crop year as the trade war goes.”BRAZIL SOYBEAN IMPORT DRYING UP SOONThe Chinese market is mainly dependent on Brazilian soybeans from last year.By the end of August, Brazil should have exported 63 million metric tons of soybeans, with another 10 million metric tons to export until January when the crop soybean starts to become available. 74% of Brazil’s soybean exports were shipped to China.“There are not many beans left for export indeed,” said Thiago Piccinin, “Most of the beans are in the south port of Rio Grande,” as soybeans harvested later in the southern state of Brazil. Piccinin is CEO of Lotus Grains and Oilseed, a trading company in Sao Paulo.Piccinin believe there will be 8 million to 10 million metric tons of soybean left for export and about 80% of those beans will go to China.“Chinese crushers brought another 30 cargos of soybeans from South American countries, mostly from Brazil, last week, as there is no hope to make a deal between U.S. and China government recently,” said a trader in Beijing, “But, as Brazilian soybean exports dry up, Chinese market will face a shortage at the end of the year.(CCSK)© Copyright 2019 DTN/The Progressive Farmer. All rights reserved.last_img read more