New fee schedules for professionals operating within the built environment – South Africa

Fee guidelines for professionals working within South Africa’s built environment are set to come under scrutiny over the next few months, when fee and work-reservation proposals for professionals operating in the sector will be presented to the Competition Commission.

Read more @ Competition body to apply its mind to new fee schedules for professionals operating within the built environment.

Source: Engineeringnews.co.za

Bigger cities means more poverty says UN

Urbanisation in the Asia-Pacific region has driven up poverty, says the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (Escap).

The agency’s latest yearbook showed that with an increase in urbanisation and growth, urban poverty had also worsened.

This year represented a turning point in human geography. For the first time in history, more people now live in cities than in rural areas.

Although the Asia-Pacific region, along with Africa, was still one of the least urbanised regions of the world, its urban population had grown at the fastest pace in the last 15 years, said the yearbook, which describes economic, social and environmental trends in Asia and the Pacific.

Source: Bangkok Post : General news.

The triumph of ugliness – National – smh.com.au

Are Australians visually illiterate? That’s the question that architects, designers and their critics have been pondering since the first convict staggered ashore, whacked up a bark humpy on the edge of Sydney Harbour, hung an emoh ruo sign on the front door and stuck a gnome in the garden.

The Pritzker Prize-winning architect Glenn Murcutt is in no doubt.

Read more @ The triumph of ugliness – smh.com.au.

Source: Syndey MOrning Herald

ESCAP TO LAUNCH KEY ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL SURVEY ON ASIA-PACIFIC REGION

United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) addresses in the latest issue of its flagship publication, the Economic and Social Survey for Asia and the Pacific 2008.

The Survey will be launched on Thursday, 27 March, 2008, at 0500 GMT, in more than 20 capitals in the region, and in New York and Geneva.

This year’s Survey, entitled “Sustaining Growth and Sharing Prosperity,” says 218 million – a third of the region’s poor, largely living in rural areas – could be lifted out of poverty by raising agricultural productivity if governments address decades of policy neglect and failure in the agricultural sector. The Survey also calls for a comprehensive liberalization of global trade in agriculture, as this would take a further 48 million people out of poverty in the region.

Source: ESCAP Press Release: ESCAP TO LAUNCH KEY ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL SURVEY ON ASIA-PACIFIC REGION.

Green challenge to China’s MEGA-projects

Local governments in China, keen on attracting big investment projects to boost local economies, are starting to listen to a public increasingly concerned with potential environmental hazards.

Some projects, such as a chemical plant planned for Xiamen, in southwestern Fujian province, are being shelved, suspended or relocated due to public objections. A US$5 billion Sinopec-Kuwait oil joint-venture refinery proposed for Guangzhou, in Guangdong province, is at the center of one such dispute.

Read more @ Asia Times Online :: China News, China Business News, Taiwan and Hong Kong News and Business..

Source: Asia Times Online

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