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« on: Oct 22nd, 2018, 3:28am »
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Gianni Infantino's reign as FIFA president may be in its infancy Raphael Guerreiro Jersey , but he's wasting no time in putting his own shine on the World Cup. His presidential campaign was based on expanding the finals of the tournament and he's been as good as his word, if not more so.
Talk prior to this week was that the World Cup finals would expand from its current 32-team iteration to 40 nations, in either 10 groups of four or eight groups of five. Infantino has now gone eight better and declared his preference is for a new 48-country tournament for 2026.
A 48-team World Cup with a playoff game for a place in the group stage having been mooted- as one option. Bizarre as that seems, Infantino argues, quite reasonably for the vast majority of FIFA's member nations that have never been to the finals Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang Jersey , that ""an entire country lives for such a game.""
Whatever form it takes, it looks set to happen. After all, this is Infantino's priority and he was at UEFA when they decided to expand Euro 2016 from 16 teams to 24. While there was joy for newcomers Albania and Iceland, by and large the expanded format didn't deliver.
That has to be the worry with a larger-than-life World Cup. Aside from the logistical strain of 16 groups of three teams, the stakes are so high in the two games that each nation plays that it will surely result in the kind of risk aversive football that so often blights tournaments. Great news for kids who get to stay up past their bedtime for inevitable penalty shootouts Omer Toprak Jersey , guaranteed boredom for the neutral.
The other outcome is that we end up with something like the UEFA -Champions League. We are guaranteed goals, but only because of the constant mismatches in the opening games of a tournament that has been expanded to breaking point.
There's a slim chance that FIFA's council will choose to keep the tournament at 32 teams, but expansion of some description is much the likelier outcome when they convene next month. The proposed new spots would go to nations outside of UEFA, supporting FIFA's- expansion into emerging markets with the coincidence that it will aid votes when Infantino's re-election -campaign comes around.
A 48-nation World Cup may yet be the most unwelcome swelling, but it has people worrying about 2026 rather than Russia 2018 or Qatar 2022. Mind you Nuri Sahin Jersey , with Infantino also admitting to his support for up to three co-hosts, there's plenty of room for expansion when it comes to controversial hosts.
NICOSIA, Aug. 29 (Xinhua) -- Cyprus has achieved an increased fiscal surplus of 215 million euros (258 million U.S. dollars), or 1.2 percent of its gross domestic product (GDP) in the first seven months of this year, the Cyprus Statistical Service (CyStat) said on Tuesday.
CyStat said that in the corresponding period last year Neven Subotic Jersey , the government had recorded a deficit of 91 million euros, or 0.5 percent of GDP.
CyStat said that the surplus was the result of an increase in public revenue which rose by 12 percent to reach 4.13 billion euros in the first seven months.
The improvement of the public finances has allowed the government to spend more, ahead of the upcoming presidential election in early 2018.
The economy was also greatly benefited by record arrivals of tourists in the first half of the year.
CyStat said in a separate statement that tourist arrivals went up by 17 percent by the end of June and revenue by 20 percent in what is expected to be a boom year for the tourism industry.  
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BEIJING, Aug. 22 (Xinhua) -- Chinese authorities announced Tuesday a raise in cash rewards for whistleblowers who report on food safety, drugs, cosmetics, health products Marwin Hitz Jersey , and medical equipment.
The China Food and Drug Administration (CFDA) and the Ministry of Finance stated that a single tip-off will be rewarded with up to 500,000 yuan (about 75,000 U.S. dollars) instead of the previous limit of 300,000 yuan.
The regulation also states that informants who are insiders in the product's development, manufacture Marius Wolf Jersey , sales or applications could be rewarded with extra cash on top of the new limit.
It also states clearly that the identities of informants should be strictly protected. Anonymous reporters will get a code from food and drug supervisors as a way to claim rewards.
Food safety, long a headache for Chinese customers, poses a severe challenge for quality watchdogs due to the vast amount of food on sale and the limited number of supervisory staff.
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