Africa Asean MENA Pakistan Press Releases South Africa

Chris McCloskey Joins Duck Creek as Chief Operating Officer

Boston, May 30, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Duck Creek Technologies, the intelligent solutions provider defining the future of Property and Casualty (P&C) and general insurance, today announces the addition of Chris McCloskey to its leadership team as Chief Operating Officer. McCloskey will be instrumental in driving key strategy, operational and transformation initiatives across the entire business, particularly within our customer and professional services organizations.

McCloskey joins Duck Creek from Datto, where he was most recently Chief Customer Officer for the cybersecurity and business continuity company. At Datto, McCloskey was responsible for building a new customer success organization that significantly improved technical implementation, customer satisfaction and retention, and partner health. Before joining Datto, McCloskey grew through sales and customer-facing leadership roles to become COO, Americas at London-based Finastra, a multi-billion-dollar financial services software company.

“We are delighted to welcome Chris to Duck Creek’s leadership team; he will help us continue to better focus on increasing lifetime value and enable our customers to be more successful,” said Mike Jackowski, CEO of Duck Creek. “Chris is incredibly accomplished in growing and leading large teams through transformation, and having him as a strategic customer-facing leader is the perfect match to advance our vision.”

McCloskey Chris earned his MBA from the Stern School of Business at New York University and his bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Gettysburg College.

About Duck Creek Technologies

Duck Creek Technologies is the intelligent solutions provider defining the future of the property and casualty (P&C) and general insurance industry. We are the platform upon which modern insurance systems are built, enabling the industry to capitalize on the power of the cloud to run agile, intelligent, and evergreen operations. Authenticity, purpose, and transparency are core to Duck Creek, and we believe insurance should be there for individuals and businesses when, where, and how they need it most. Our market-leading solutions are available on a standalone basis or as a full suite, and all are available via Duck Creek OnDemand. Visit to learn more. Follow Duck Creek on our social channels for the latest information – LinkedIn and Twitter.

Carley Bunch
Duck Creek Technologies

GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 8847565

Africa Asean MENA Pakistan Press Releases South Africa

Hitachi Energy signs agreements with ENOWA and Saudi Electricity Company to design and develop the first phase of visionary NEOM region transmission system

Collaboration to accelerate the development of NEOM in Saudi Arabia with up to 9 gigawatts of power transmission capacity

Zurich, Switzerland, May 30, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Hitachi Energy, a global technology leader advancing a sustainable energy future for all, has signed agreements under the supervision and management of the Ministry of Energy with the Saudi Electricity Company (SEC) and with ENOWA. The agreements include the supply of three high-voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission systems to end customer ENOWA, the utility company for NEOM in Northwest Saudi Arabia. Built with sustainability in mind, NEOM is among Saudi Arabia’s Giga-Projects1 reshaping the future of development. The three HVDC links will have a total power capacity of up to 9 gigawatts (GW).

The agreements include an order from ENOWA’s engineering, procurement and construction management (EPCM) partner, the Saudi Electricity Company (SEC) awarded to Hitachi Energy and its consortium partner, Saudi Services for Electro Mechanical Works (SSEM), to provide one of the world’s first 3 GW, 525 kilovolt (kV) HVDC Light® transmission system connecting Oxagon, NEOM’s regional development, with the larger Yanbu area more than 650 kilometers away in Western Saudi Arabia.

Hitachi Energy’s scope of supply includes design, engineering, procurement of HVDC technology and commissioning of the HVDC Light converter stations. Whilst SSEM – a leading Saudi EPC specialized in power, water and industrial projects – will design and supply the AC equipment portion and perform the construction and the installation. The converter stations convert the power from AC to DC then back to AC for integration into the receiving grid. The converters will be sourced by and supplied to Saudi Electricity Company, who were contracted in 2022 by ENOWA to act as their EPCM to build this first HVDC system for NEOM.

Further to this, Hitachi Energy and ENOWA have signed an early works and capacity reservation agreement for two additional HVDC projects, each rated up to 3 GW. Under this agreement, both companies commit to having the resources and capacity necessary to implement these two HVDC systems. As part of a new scalable and modular regional network design that is targeted to seamlessly integrate future renewables and energy storage technologies in the NEOM Energy System, making it unique in terms of size and complexity. The co-operation will also explore opportunities to develop local competencies in the Kingdom, including ways to sustainably assemble the necessary HVDC Light components locally.

“We are delighted to strengthen our collaboration with ENOWA and Saudi Electricity Company in order to power one of the most visionary development projects of all time,” said Niklas Persson, Managing Director of Hitachi Energy’s Grid Integration business. “As the world progresses towards a more sustainable future, our expertise and HVDC technologies are true enablers of the electrification of the global energy system and the transition to renewables.”

“By securing the first capacities for such an important part of our future grid in only one year since the decision to use this technology, we show ENOWA’s commitment to supporting Saudi Vision 2030 in collaboration with Saudi Electricity Company and Hitachi Energy,” said Thorsten Schwarz, Executive Director of Grid Technology & Projects, Energy of ENOWA.

ENOWA, NEOM’s energy and water company, produces and delivers clean and sustainable energy for industrial and commercial applications. The company benefits from NEOM’s greenfield site and strategic location in the northwestern part of Saudi Arabia, with abundant solar and wind resources. ENOWA will act as a catalyst and incubator for developing new, sustainable energy and water businesses while creating a robust economic sector regionally.

ENOWA seeks by its commitment to renewable energy and efficient water management, to become a global reference for industry leaders and setting a benchmark for sustainable economic circular systems around the world. Formed in 2022, ENOWA is the principal shareholder in the world’s largest green hydrogen production plant set to be commissioned in 2026 and will enable NEOM to be a global green hydrogen hub.

NEOM will be powered by 100 percent clean energy, through renewable solar, wind and green hydrogen-based energy. The region is designed to be a blueprint for sustainable urban living with minimal impact on the environment and enhanced livability.

Note to editors:
Hitachi Energy’s HVDC solution combines world-leading expertise in HVDC converter valves; the MACH™ digital control platform2, converter power transformers and high-voltage switchgear; as well as system studies, design and engineering, supply, installation supervision and commissioning.

HVDC Light is a voltage source converter technology developed by Hitachi Energy, which was launched over 25 years ago. It is the preferred technology for many grid applications, including interconnecting countries, integrating renewables and “power-from-shore” connections to offshore production facilities. HVDC Light’s defining features include uniquely compact converter stations and exceptionally low electrical losses.

Hitachi Energy pioneered commercial HVDC technology almost 70 years ago and has delivered more than half of the world’s HVDC projects.

Hitachi Energy’s consulting services assist energy customers in pinpointing their challenges and suggesting customized solutions tailored to their unique requirements. Our consultants operate independently, with a product and system-agnostic approach, possessing in-depth knowledge of global technologies, standards, and local grid codes.

1 Saudi’s Giga-Projects
2 Modular Advanced Control for HVDC (MACH™)

See also:
Hitachi Energy to supply the first ever large-scale HVDC interconnection in the Middle East and North Africa (2022)
Hitachi Energy and Gulf Cooperation Council Interconnection Authority sign contract to upgrade high-voltage direct current transmission system (2023)

ENOWA website


About Hitachi Energy
Hitachi Energy is a global technology leader that is advancing a sustainable energy future for all. We serve customers in the utility, industry and infrastructure sectors with innovative solutions and services across the value chain. Together with customers and partners, we pioneer technologies and enable the digital transformation required to accelerate the energy transition towards a carbon-neutral future. We are advancing the world’s energy system to become more sustainable, flexible and secure whilst balancing social, environmental and economic value. Hitachi Energy has a proven track record and unparalleled installed base in more than 140 countries. Headquartered in Switzerland, we employ around 40,000 people in 90 countries and generate business volumes of over $10 billion USD.

About Hitachi, Ltd.

Hitachi drives Social Innovation Business, creating a sustainable society through the use of data and technology. We solve customers’ and society’s challenges with Lumada solutions leveraging IT, OT (Operational Technology) and products. Hitachi operates under the business structure of “Digital Systems & Services” – supporting our customers’ digital transformation; “Green Energy & Mobility” – contributing to a decarbonized society through energy and railway systems, and “Connective Industries” – connecting products through digital technology to provide solutions in various industries. Driven by Digital, Green, and Innovation, we aim for growth through co-creation with our customers. The company’s consolidated revenues for fiscal year 2022 (ended March 31, 2023) totaled 10,881.1 billion yen, with 696 consolidated subsidiaries and approximately 320,000 employees worldwide. For more information on Hitachi, please visit the company’s website at


Jocelyn Chang
Hitachi Energy

GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 8848737

Business Market

Water institute sets modalities for bio-circular economy

The International Water Management Institute (IWMI) has set up modalities for Nigeria to use solid waste from the agriculture, water, sanitation and energy sources for economic development.

Dr Boluwaji Onabolu, IWMI Lead Consultant, said this at the stakeholders engagement workshop on ‘Assessment of the Investment Climate for Bio-Circular Economy in Nigeria’.

Bio-Circular Economy uses renewable biological resources from land and sea, such as crops, forests, fish, animals and micro-organisms, to produce food, health, materials, products, textiles and energy.

According to her, Nigeria has the potential to turn around its economic growth with huge investments and opportunities in the environment, sanitation, water, and agriculture sectors.

She said the rising global demand for water, food, and energy, in the context of a growing deficit and competing uses, reinforced the need for more investments in circular economy approaches.

She said the institute was assessing the investment climate for businesses so as to promote a circular economy in which nothing is put into waste.

She said investing in Resource Recovery and Reuse (RRR) businesses in Nigeria, was a potential pathway to sustainable economic development, saying the institute was convinced that stakeholders’ participation would make a huge impact.

“We have learnt about studies that revealed that 183 million Nigerians do not have access to clean energy, so this is why IWMI has facilitated this workshop.

“We will have answers to some of the questions, why is it that these businesses like changing solid wastes into energy forms like biogas, and why is it that they are not able to sustain their growth?”

Dr Olufunke Cofie, Regional Director for West and Central Africa, IWMI, who spoke virtually, said most of the resource reuse and recovery initiatives that aim to recover energy, water, and nutrients fall short of the estimated potential contribution to the economy and sustainable development.

Cofie said consequently, such businesses are unable to expand and sustain themselves, as theoretically projected that they should be able to.

Prof. Olumuyiwa Jayeoba, President, Association of Deans of Agriculture in Nigeria, said many opportunities abound in the agriculture value chain.

Jayeoba said if Nigeria managed climate change and its impact well, it would have an advantage in the agricultural sector.

He said climate smart agriculture would sustainably increase productivity and income, and attainment of the National Food Security and Development Goals.

He said an effective approach in climate smart agriculture, would also strengthen the country’s resilience to climate change and variability.

Also speaking, Dr Chimere Ohajinwa, noted that the impact of climate change in the environment was evident in extreme weather conditions, drought conditions, affecting the attainment of the sustainable development goals.

Ohajinwa said Nigeria faced significant waste management challenges, with increasing volumes of solid waste generated in urban areas.

She said the RRR approaches emphasised proper waste segregation, collection, and recycling.

“Establishing efficient recycling facilities and promoting community-based recycling initiatives can help recover valuable materials such as plastics, paper, glass, and metals.

“This creates employment opportunities in waste collection, sorting, and recycling industries, contributing to economic growth,” she said.

Speaking on circular bio-economy, the environmental expert said it emphasised the use of renewable natural capital and focused on minimising waste, so as to meet the sustainable development goals by 2030.

Ms. Nneka Akunwa, a sanitation and hygiene expert, said Nigeria has a huge market for sanitation products and services.

According to her, half of Nigeria’s population, about 111 million people, do not have a decent toilet of their own, lacking basic or safely managed sanitation.

“One in every four Nigerians are practicing Open defecation, and a reasonable amount of untreated human waste ends up in the environment, threatening people’s health and degrading ecosystems.

“Imagine the business opportunities that are available in the sector if toilet business owners come on board.”

IWMI has inaugurated a Nigerian assessment which is being conducted from February to May in collaboration with the Federal Government.

The findings will be used as a basis to design context-appropriate policies and strategies that can address the bottlenecks and increase RRR business attractiveness for investments.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Business Market

Ethiopia Perfect Partner for Development, Investment in Africa: American Analyst

With its enormous comparative advantages, Ethiopia is a perfect partner for development and investment in Africa, the American political-economic analyst Lawrence Freeman said.

Freeman, who is known for closely following Ethiopian affairs, told ENA that the two-year long war in the northern part of Ethiopia has come to an end and swept the way for development and investment to the east African nation.

More importantly, the relative peace that Ethiopia has been enjoying after the Pretoria accord has created a conducive environment to reinforce efforts on reconstruction, recovery and investment activities, the analyst noted.

Everybody is happy that the war is over, Freeman said, adding that there is now going to be a process of reconstruction that could be used as a means to expand the entire Ethiopian economy.

The European Union (EU) as well as its member countries and the United States have now been normalizing their bilateral ties with Ethiopia, a country considered a longstanding diplomatic partner of the West.

The American analyst further pointed out the need to enhance financial support and maximize investment beyond a geopolitical interest in Ethiopia.

The country has untapped potential for luring massive global investment in the areas of agriculture, manufacturing, and energy, among many other areas.

Mentioning the agricultural potential of Ethiopia as an example, he noted that most of the arable land is not cultivated.

“Most of the land in Ethiopia, what we call arable land that could be cultivated, is not being used. Only a tiny fraction of Ethiopia's arable land is actually under cultivation. There are certain crops that are being grown. That has to expand and that itself can help relieve some of the poverty and hunger questions.”

According to him, the country could attract Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) from around the world since its agricultural potential is tremendously undeveloped.

He appreciated the recent success story of Ethiopia on wheat production and its export that started this year.

In this regard, Freeman believes that Ethiopia can play a crucial role for agricultural investment alone in Africa where the continent spends 45 billion USD for food import annually.

This analyst further noted that the country can also attract giant global energy companies and make contribution to the Horn of Africa and beyond.

Freeman also noted that Ethiopian Airline, the most advanced airline industry in the African continent, can serve as a manufacturing capability to build and repair engines by attracting investment

“We can begin to use some of that capability. We are talking about 10,000 of square feet of space you used in Ethiopian Airlines to maintain those planes. We can begin to use some of that capability and transform it into manufacturing capability of finished products and goods that Ethiopian would consume and would not have to buy from abroad.”

Finally, he stated that Ethiopia has built industrial parks that could be considered as comparative advantage to bring more investors.

Source: Ethiopian News Agency


Gov’t, Development Partners Made Significant Investments In Social Protection, But Requires More Investments: Samson

The government of Ethiopia and its development partners have made large investments in social protection sector, which requires more investment, according to Director of Research at Economic Policy Research Institute, Michael Samson.

Samson has 37 years of experience working in social protection, and specializes in designing, implementing, monitoring and evaluating social protection strategies, systems, and programmes, with a particular emphasis on food security and nutrition.

Talking to ENA, he stated that the government of Ethiopia and its development partners have made large investment in the social protection sector.

He stated that social protection means many things, but at the core of which, is investment in food security, and nutrition.”

“It’s become one of the most important initiatives for inclusive growth in the country. But it requires more investment. It's necessary that everybody who requires social protection have this investment and for that to happen it's important for the government to see how vital this is for the country's future economic growth and development,” according to expert.

Partners like the WFP, UNICEF and the World Bank have made significant investments with the government of Ethiopia to ensure food security and nutrition.

Moreover, he elaborated that the implementation of a comprehensive green economy policy and strategy is vital to realize the social protection system.

On other hand, Samson illustrated that nutrition is not just about having enough food. It is about having access to: safe water, sanitation, education and health, along with food security; all of which are important to improve nutritional outcomes.

These nutritional outcomes then derive what economists call cognitive capital, the ability to work effectively in a knowledge economy, he indicated.

He stressed that green economy is a smart economy, and this needs investment in nutrition and food security to drive the cognitive capital and enable everybody in Ethiopia to achieve this prosperity.

“A green initiative and a climate change mitigation strategy involves a complex interaction of investments. You need to invest in a new energy policy, a new industrial policy, really an entirely new development policy which creates enormous opportunities for the country to achieve greater prosperity,” he elaborated.

Recall a high-level national social protection conference was held last week under the theme “Social Protection for Nation Building in Ethiopia” with the objective to expand and improve social protection programs in the country.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Demeke Mekonnen, African Union Commission, Deputy Commissioner, Monique Nsanzabaganwa and other high government officials, representatives of various partners and other pertinent stakeholders attended the conference.

The conference aimed at generating ideas and have a common understanding among stakeholders about the expansion and improvement of social protection programs and systems through collaboration among the government, non-governmental actors, private sectors and development partners.

Source: Ethiopian News Agency


PP Executive Committee Begins Regular Session

Executive Committee of the Prosperity Party (PP) has started its regular meeting today.

The executive committee is expected to conduct in-depth discussion on national and party affairs, pass decision, and set directions.

By conducting a joint evaluation of documents prepared for the discussion, it will hold consultation on the path of prosperity that could be achieved by involving the people, it was learned.

Source: Ethiopian News Agency


Fed Police General Demelash Discusses with Somalia’s Police Chief, Deputy Police Commandeer of Djibouti

The Ethiopian Federal Police Commissioner, General Demelash Gebremichael, held discussion with Somalia's Police Chief Brigadier General Sulub Ahmed Firin and the Djibouti's National Police Deputy Commander, Colonel Omar Hussein Hassan. At the occasion, the commanders discussed on the agreement the countries reached on preventing terrorism and other organized cross-border crimes through coordinated alliance.

In addition, they agreed to sign a joint memorandum of understanding (MoU) at the next meeting in Djibouti on strengthening the capacity of the police officers of the three countries, according to the Ethiopian Federal Police. Commissioner General Demelash Gebremichael is the current president of the Eastern Africa Police Chiefs Cooperation Organization.

Source: Ethiopian News Agency


AU Commission to Convene Meeting on Sudan Crisis

African Union Commission Chairperson, Moussa Faki Mahamat, will convene the Third Meeting of the Expanded Mechanism on the Sudan Crisis at the African Union headquarters tomorrow.

According to a press release of AU, the aim of the meeting is to discuss the next steps regarding the situation in Sudan, including the implementation of the African Union Roadmap for the Resolution of the Conflict in Sudan (the AU Roadmap), in close collaboration with the Sudanese stakeholders.

The meeting is expected to bring together representatives from the Trilateral Mechanism (the AU, IGAD and UN), the League of Arab States (LAS), the European Union (EU), the permanent members (P5) of the UN Security Council (UNSC), the African members of the UNSC (A3), Sudan’s neighboring countries, the countries designated by IGAD to engage the belligerents, Chair of the African Union, the Quad, the Troika, Germany and Qatar.

In the coming days, the AU Commission Chairperson will dispatch emissaries to the states neighboring Sudan as part of his efforts to strengthen the search for a common approach to finding a sustainable solution to the multi-layered crisis in Sudan, it was learned.

The African Union has strongly condemned the ongoing brutal and unjustified conflict between the Sudanese Armed Forces and the Rapid Support Forces, which has resulted in indiscriminate killing of innocent civilians, wanton destruction of infrastructure, an unprecedented dire humanitarian situation, and gross violations of International Humanitarian Law and International Human Rights Law.

The Union has also stressed that there can be no military solution to the conflict and demanded the resumption of the political transition process culminating in the conduct of elections towards a democratic, civilian-led government.

Recall that the African Union has also firmly rejected all forms of external interference in Sudan.

The Expanded Mechanism on the Sudan Crisis was established at the Ministerial Special Session on Sudan, convened by the AU Commission Chairperson, Moussa Faki Mahamat, on 20th, April 2023, to coordinate and harmonize regional, continental and international efforts in support of a peaceful resolution of the conflict to end the suffering of the Sudanese people.

Source: Ethiopian News Agency