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A report from People’s Daily: PLA support base in Djibouti pursues peace, cooperation, friendship




Beijing, Sept. 12, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — A ceremony marking the entry of troops into the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) support base in Djibouti was held at the base’s barracks on August 1, 2017, marking the completion and official operation of the base.

The establishment of the PLA Djibouti base was a decision made by the two countries after friendly negotiations.

In accordance with UN Security Council resolutions, China has deployed vessels to the Gulf of Aden and the waters off the Somali coast on escort missions since 2008. During the process, Chinese officers and men encountered difficulties in replenishing food and fuel, and Djibouti offered logistical support in multiple instances.

The construction of the support base enables China to better fulfill its international obligations such as escorts and humanitarian rescue in the Gulf of Aden and the waters off the Somali coast. It also contributes to the economic and social development of Djibouti and enables China to make new and greater contributions to safeguarding peace and stability in Africa and the world.

Over the past six years, the capabilities of the support base have steadily improved. The base has provided efficient and professional support for escort fleets and Chinese peacekeeping troops deployed to South Sudan, Mali and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The construction and growth of the support base has strongly aided the Chinese military’s escort missions in the Gulf of Aden and peacekeeping operations in Africa, while making prominent contributions to regional peace and stability and safeguarding international maritime channels.

The Chinese support base plays an important role in maintaining regional trade flows, Aboubaker Omar Hadi, chairman of the Djibouti Ports and Free Zones Authority, told People’s Daily.

The PLA support base promotes mutual trust and understanding, and conveys a message of peace and friendship.

Since its establishment, the base has held over 10 joint exercises and drills with Djiboutian and other foreign troops in Djibouti. It has also participated in more than 200 bilateral and multilateral exchange activities, and held five multinational basketball and football tournaments. This has continuously advanced bilateral and multilateral exchanges and showcased the open and confident image of the Chinese military.

Since 2019, the PLA Support Base Hospital in Djibouti has partnered with the general hospital of Djibouti’s military for paired assistance. So far, China has sent over 100 medical experts to Djibouti, assisted with 45 surgeries there and held a series of bilateral clinical skills training sessions.

The base has become an important platform for medical exchanges, said Feng Dan, a medic who has joined multiple exchange activities. “We are very proud to be doctors at the base,” Feng told People’s Daily.

Fran, a military doctor at the Djibouti Military Hospital of the Djiboutian Republican Guard, said that China’s long-term medical assistance is important for Djibouti and it is hoped that there will be further exchanges with the Chinese side to improve local medical capabilities.

Li Zhaohui, head of the PLA support base, noted that the base hopes to strengthen its communication with Djibouti and foreign troops in Djibouti, constantly enhance practical cooperation with them, fulfill China’s international obligations, and work together with them to cope with security threats and challenges, so as to make greater contributions to regional peace and stability.

Teenagers are the future of Djibouti’s economic and social development, as well as the hope for the continuous friendship between China and Djibouti. In order to improve the teaching conditions in local schools, the support base has established a regular education assistance mechanism with Djibouti, which conducts public welfare assistance activities.

In January this year, the support base donated computers, projectors, desks and chairs, sports equipment and stationery to three primary schools in the Balbala district of Djibouti City. It was the support base’s third round of public welfare assistance to local schools.

“The new desks, chairs, and equipment have made our school more beautiful,” said Hassan, a student at the PK12 Primary School in Djibouti City, carrying his new blue backpack with a happy smile on his face.

Minister of National Education and Vocational Training of Djibouti Moustapha Mohamed Mahamoud said that with the help of the PLA support base, the teaching environment of local schools has been improved, providing children with better conditions for growth.

“I’m grateful to Chinese doctors and nurses,” said Mohamed Ali Ahmed, a 66-year-old man from Djibouti, who had his cataract cured at the PLA support base after having had the problem for six years.

In December 2019, the support base kicked off a 25-day medical campaign in cooperation with Djibouti’s Ministry of Health, which offered free cataract surgery for over 100 local patients including Ahmed. The campaign received widespread praise from the local community.

Ten medical staff members of the support base were awarded with the Independence Day Medal signed by President Ismail Omar Guelleh of Djibouti.

Saleh Banoita Tourab, then secretary-general of the Ministry of Health in Djibouti, noted that the Chinese military doctors have brought great relief to local cataract patients, and their act of compassion will be forever remembered by the people of Djibouti.

In 2019, Djibouti experienced a rare heavy rainfall, which caused flooding and resulted in casualties. In response to Djibouti’s request, the PLA support base dispatched troops to provide assistance to the affected population, and thousands of people received timely help.

Idle, a resident of Djibouti, and his family and friends were severely affected by the flood. “The house of a friend of mine was almost swallowed by the flood, and we felt desperate,” he said. Fortunately, Chinese soldiers arrived and helped them with drainage and dredging. “We are grateful to the Chinese military,” Idle said.

Since its establishment, the support base has been committed to assisting in the local economic and social development of Djibouti through various initiatives such as public welfare education, medical services, and disaster relief. These practical actions have earned widespread praise from the government and people of Djibouti.

“When I first arrived in Djibouti in 2018, there were few locals who could speak Chinese,” said Zhang Daqian, a PLA officer who has been stationed at the base for five years. He told People’s Daily that whenever the soldiers go out on missions nowadays, local people would warmly greet them in Chinese and give thumbs-up to them.

“This change is a testament to the unwavering dedication of Chinese soldiers who have been serving the local community. It inspires us and motivates us to continue our efforts,” Zhang said.


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PTI Secures €1.2 Billion Multi-Jurisdiction Transaction




NEW YORK, Sept. 28, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Phoenix Tower International, LLC (“PTI”), through its Spanish subsidiary (PTI Iberica V, S.A.) announced today that it has closed a new €1.2 billion senior credit facility in Europe to consolidate its existing loans and provide substantial additional capacity to support further growth both in existing and new markets in Europe. 

The transaction comprised of the following senior secured facilities: (i) a €700 million term loan, (ii) a €400 million delayed draw term loan, (iii) a €50 million revolving credit facility, and (iv) a €50 million debt service reserve facility, all of which are due in September 2030 (7 years). Proceeds from the facilities will be used to: (i) repay existing indebtedness including related fees and expenses,  (ii) fund capital expenditure requirements and acquisitions, including the recent acquisition of the French portfolio of wireless tower assets from Cellnex (1,226 sites hosting SFR), and (iii) fund working capital requirements.

“The multi-jurisdiction loan provides PTI with the flexibility to continue to grow our business across Europe with incremental liquidity available at our disposal. The financing will allow us to strengthen our commitment to the region, as we continue to construct and invest in digital infrastructure in markets that are experiencing a rising demand for connectivity and technological upgrades. We are excited to continue to expand our presence in Europe and deliver value-add infrastructure solutions to our customers”, said Dagan Kasavana, Chief Executive Officer of PTI.

“By providing a flexible financing covering multiple jurisdictions, PTI was able to simplify its capital structure, reduce pricing, and access incremental funds to support future growth. Raising €1.2 billion in the current market environment speaks to the strength of PTI’s business model and underscores the lender community’s appetite to support the expansion of digital connectivity. We are pleased to partner with such a strong lender group in this landmark transaction”, said Michael Bremer, Chief Financial Officer of PTI.

Natixis Corporate & Investment Banking (“Natixis”) acted as Structuring Bank. Natixis and Deutsche Bank AG acted as Lead Bookrunners and Mandated Lead Arrangers, ABN AMRO Bank N.V., ING Bank N.V., and Scotiabank (Ireland) Designated Activity Company acted as Mandated Lead Arrangers and Bookrunners, BNP Paribas and MUFG Bank acted as Mandated Lead Arrangers, and Citibank Europe PLC Dublin, Mizuho Bank Europe, and Toronto Dominion Bank acted as Participants. Natixis also acted as Facility Agent, Security Agent and Financial Modelling Bank, while ING Bank N.V. has been appointed as Sustainability Coordinator.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer acted as external legal counsel of the company, and Allen & Overy acted as external legal counsel of the lenders.

About PTI

PTI, through its subsidiaries, owns and operates over 22,000 telecom towers throughout Europe, the United States, Latin America and the Caribbean. In Europe, PTI is present in several countries including France, Italy, Ireland, Malta and Cyprus.

PTI was founded in 2013 with a mission to be a premier site provider to wireless operators across the world in high-growth markets. PTI’s investors include funds managed by Blackstone, Wren House and various members of the management team and is headquartered in Boca Raton, Florida. For more information, please visit

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BranchOut Food Inc. Expands Partnership with EnWave Corporation. Increasing Manufacturing Capacity by an Additional ~$15mm Annually & Secures Additional Product Exclusivities.




BEND, Ore, Sept. 28, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — BranchOut Foods Inc. (NASDAQ: BOF), the global trailblazer in GentleDried natural snacks and superfood ingredients, is proud to announce a significant expansion of its partnership with EnWave Corporation (TSX-V: ENW | FSE: E4U). BranchOut has agreed to purchase a second large-scale, continuous throughput dehydration machine from Enwave. Under the terms of the new Equipment Purchase Agreement (the “Agreement”), the 120kW REV™ machine is slated for delivery to BranchOut in late calendar 2024 and will add an additional $15mm in estimated topline capacity.

Eric Healy, CEO of BranchOut Food Inc., emphasized, “We are confident that this increased capacity will align perfectly with our growth trajectory, especially in light of our recent commitments from major retailers and the substantial sales pipeline we have established.”

Enwave’s Radiant Energy Vacuum (REV™) technology and associated patent portfolio was previously licensed to BranchOut along with exclusivity for its original core products. Under the new Agreement, the product exclusives have been significantly expanded to encompass the new and innovative products BranchOut has recently developed and will be launching in the very near future.

About BranchOut Food Inc.: BranchOut is an international food-tech company delivering truly great natural snacks and real superfood ingredients enabled by their licensed dehydration technology. BranchOut Food is a leading provider of high-quality dehydrated fruit and vegetable-based products and its commitment to quality and innovation sets it apart as a trusted brand and private label supplier. For more information about BranchOut Food Inc. and its products, please visit

About EnWave: EnWave Corporation stands as a global leader in vacuum microwave dehydration innovation and application. Operating from its headquarters in Vancouver, BC, EnWave boasts an impressive intellectual property portfolio and has refined its Radiant Energy Vacuum (REV™) technology into a proven, consistent, and scalable drying solution. This revolutionary technology outperforms traditional drying methods in terms of efficiency, capacity, product quality, and cost.

Media Contact:

BranchOut Food Inc. 
Email: [email protected]

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SIGMA Financial AI unveils Akili-AI: Cutting-Edge, AI-based, no-code suite of tools for traders




– Augments trader’s interactions and transforms decision-making capabilities

– Handles the full extent of structured to unstructured financial data

– Mitigates portfolio exposure risk and accelerates speed to market

LONDON, Sept. 28, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — SIGMA Financial AI, an innovator in developing AI-driven trading solutions, launches Akili-AI*, a sophisticated suite of enterprise-ready trading strategy tools. Akili-AI is a cutting-edge, no-code solution enabling data-driven insights to support the specialist needs of the global financial services trading community.

Akili-AI incorporates machine learning (ML) and natural language processing (NLP) to deliver agile tools which are more intelligent, faster and easier to use, enabling traders to create strategies at a scale and speed unachievable without AI support. Completely asset-class and instrument-agnostic, the Akili-AI system streams real-time trading data, allowing users to screen, test and design complex trading strategies promptly. 

Their SaaS-based Pattern matching platform (Patterns as a Service) helps traders monitor thousands of instruments in real-time, scanning charts for momentum changes, technical signals, support, and resistance zones. The NLP research function supports fundamental and technical qualifications from thousands of news, social media and traders’ data. Akili-AI’s flexible modular architecture, built using modern protocols, is cloud-based and scales to support the largest trading enterprises.

Andy Simpson, Co-founder and CEO, commented, “Traders are having to cope with a constant squeeze on their book; this, combined with a huge increase in data volumes, has created the need for transformative solutions which can help them find an edge. They need the ability to find new liquidity fast, enhance their trade execution capabilities, and reduce portfolio risk; Akili-AI can deliver all this at a lower cost point and faster than ever.”

“Akili-AI transforms market interaction and improves productivity by liberating traders from the constraints imposed by long-established, outdated working practices and legacy technology infrastructures. Accelerated speed to market is crucial in an industry where every second counts. Our mission is to provide AI-based solutions which enhance the human experience – not replace them – helping to generate more revenue and increased profitability,” Andy continued.

Rob Maunder, Co-founder and Chief Commercial Officer, said, “Our pioneering and creative team is an unusual blend of deep financial services experience, phenomenal engineering and world-class AI technologists who bring an unrivalled track record of developing new platforms at pace. We break the mould by delivering incredible engineering of low-latency, highly scalable systems drawing on more than a decade of generative AI experience in the social media and music industries.”

Andy concluded, “Akili-AI is the start of a refreshingly different journey of technological change; watch this space. There is much more to come.”

Akili-Ai will be showcased in the Innovators Pavilion at the FIA’s Futures and Options Expo on October 2-3, 2023 at the Sheraton Grand Chicago Riverwalk.

*Akili is the Swahili word for intelligence.

About SIGMA Financial AI:

We provide traders with a set of tools that are faster, smarter and easier to use. Our AI machine learning product suite unlocks trading opportunities through real-time analytics underpinned by world-leading, scalable, ultra-low latency architecture.

Note to Editors: For more information about SIGMA Financial AI, please visit

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