24 September 2007Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today called on the authorities in Myanmar to exercise restraint in dealing with the recent wave of peaceful protests, saying he hopes they will spur dialogue between the Government and other groups on promoting national reconciliation, the restoration of democracy and full respect for human rights. “The Secretary-General hopes that the Government will seize this opportunity to engage without delay in dialogue with all the relevant parties to the national reconciliation process on the issues of concern to the people of Myanmar,” his spokesperson said in a statement. Mr. Ban is closely following events in the Asian country, where demonstrations began last month in protest at a surge in fuel prices and the protesters have more recently included many of the country’s monks.“He commends the peaceful approach the demonstrators are using to press their interests, and he calls upon the Myanmar authorities to continue to exercise restraint,” the statement added. The Secretary-General also expressed his commitment to continue to use his good offices mandate to help in the process of national reconciliation process with a view to also promoting “the restoration of democracy and full respect for human rights in Myanmar.” Last week, Mr. Ban’s Special Envoy for Myanmar emphasized that the latest events are a clear setback for the country. Briefing the Security Council, Ibrahim Gambari said “we have no choice but to persevere” through the Secretary-General’s good offices and work with all relevant parties to try to “move events in the right direction.”
The federal government has narrowed down to nine the candidates for $950 million in funding for supercluster sites. The government hopes to create dense business areas with the initiative where large and small companies can collaborate with research institutes and organizations to commercialize ideas. Here’s a look at the shortlist of sites of the more than 50 proposals — up to five will be selected for funding.The Oceans Supercluster (Atlantic Region): Maximize the economic potential and sustainable development of Canada’s ocean economy. Address shared innovation needs by investing in digital ocean technologies for industries such as aquaculture, capture fishery, offshore oil and gas, and clean energy to improve productivity and global competitiveness.The proposal is backed by Petroleum Research Newfoundland and Labrador — one of over 25 firms, including Emera Inc., Clearwater, Aspin Kemp & Associates, radient360 and Dalhousie University.The “AI-powered Supply Chains” Supercluster (Quebec): Define a new global supply chain platform and bolster Canadian leadership in AI and data science. Empower Canada as a leading exporter — for example through demand forecasting, products customization and flow optimization — to profoundly impact the retail, manufacturing and infrastructure sectors.The proposal is backed by Optel Group — one of over 80 firms, including Agropur, Aldo, Alimentation Couche-Tard, Bell Canada, CGI Group, Cascades and Polytechnique Montreal.The “Mobility Systems and Technologies for the 21st Century” Supercluster (Quebec): Leverage digital technologies to advance Canadian industrial leadership in next generation mobility products and services. Focus on innovation and commercialization to serve market needs in aerospace, ground transportation and advanced manufacturing.The proposal is backed by CAE Inc. — one of over 170 firms, including Pratt & Whitney Canada Corp., UrtheCast Corp., Marinvent Corp. and Polytechnique Montreal.The “Clean, Low-Energy, Engaged, and Remediated” Supercluster (Ontario): Transform Canada’s mining sector and position Canada as a global leader in clean resources, clean technology and responsible sourcing of metals. Tackle global challenges of energy intensity, water use, and environmental footprint through collaborative innovation, initiate export pathways and create new skilled jobs.The proposal is backed by the Canada Mining Innovation Council — one of over 90 firms, including Agnico Eagle Mines Ltd., Barrick Gold Corp., Teck Resources Ltd., Motion Metrics and University of British Columbia.The “Building an Advanced Manufacturing” Supercluster (Ontario): Supercharge manufacturing competitiveness in Canada by building an Industry 4.0 ecosystem. Drive collaboration between technology and manufacturing sectors to create and diffuse new solutions by scaling production and speeding adoption.The proposal is backed by Communitech Corp. and MaRS Discovery District — one of over 100 firms, including Linamar Corp., Maple Leaf Foods, Miovision Technologies Inc., Myant Inc. and the University of Waterloo.The “Protein Innovations Canada” Supercluster (Prairies): Position Canada as the world’s paramount supplier of plant-based proteins and related products. Capture the massive export market opportunity for safe, nutritious plant-based food and feed by stimulating collaboration on novel technologies and value-added supply-chain infrastructure.The proposal is backed by Ag-West Bio Inc. — one of over 60 firms, including AGT Food and Ingredients, Dow AgroSciences Canada Inc., ISM, DuPont Pioneer, Bioriginal Food & Science Corp. and the University of Saskatchewan.The “Smart Agri-food” Supercluster (Prairies): Make Canada the preferred global supplier of sustainable, high-quality, safe food. Advance market competitiveness by building information technologies, including data analysis and quality verification platforms, to add informatics, connectivity and traceability in the crop, livestock and agri-food processing sectors.The proposal is backed by Agrium — one of over 50 firms, including Telus Corp., Farmers Edge, BIXSco. and Olds College.The “Smart, Sustainable and Resilient Infrastructure” Supercluster (Prairies): Transform Canada’s built environment to make it more resilient, sustainable, productive and cost-effective. Revolutionize the design, construction and operations of infrastructure and make Canada a world leader with the use of advanced digital communications, cutting edge tools, and interconnected applications and services.The proposal is backed by Stantec Consulting Ltd. — one of over 25 firms, including PCL Construction Management Inc., Ledcor Group, Barry Johns Architecture Ltd., Athabasca University and Southern Alberta Institute of Technology.The “Digital Technology” Supercluster (British Columbia): Make Canada faster, smarter and more collaborative in inventing, developing and applying digital technologies. Advance data collection, analysis and visualization to drive competitiveness across environment and resource tech, precision health and manufacturing.The proposal is backed by Telus — one of over 70 firms, including Avcorp Industries Inc., D-Wave Systems Inc., Timberwest Forest Corp., Microsoft Canada Development Centre and six post-secondary institutions.