Nova Scotia’s new Service Export Program is helping local companies close big sales overseas. The new program has helped five firms close deals worth $685,000, with additional sales of $840,000 expected in the coming months. The Office of Economic Development started the program with a contribution of $80,000. The program has been so successful that the province has agreed to spend an additional $150,000 this year and has budgeted $200,000 for 2006-07. Ernest Fage, Minister of Economic Development, says he expects more success stories as 71 firms report back from past sales trips. “Nova Scotians have lots of expertise to offer the world, particularly in the area of service export,” said Mr. Fage. “Our program helps defray costs so Nova Scotia firms can afford to travel and close the deals.” The Service Export Program was established in February as part of the province’s provincial trade strategy — Going Global, Staying Local. The program provides up to $5,000 to individual firms for travel outside the Maritimes for specific marketing initiatives. EastCan Geomatics Consulting Ltd. — a Halifax-based company that provides digital mapping, cartographic and geographic information system (GIS) services — received funding for travel to Puerto Rico to meet with government officials about continuing efforts to modernize that country’s property taxation system. EastCan won the contract. “With the help of the province’s service export program, we were able to travel to Puerto Rico, meet with the client and submit a winning proposal,” said Albert Shamess, chief operating officer of EastCan Geomatics. “Getting face-to-face with our clients allowed us to really focus on our capabilities in leading-edge information technology to solve their problems.” Anyone exporting a service can apply to the program, including those involved in the performing arts, media, consulting, information technology, engineering and education. The Service Export Program is funded by the Office of Economic Development and administered by Nova Scotia Business Inc. It covers 50 per cent of eligible travel expenses, including airfare and accommodation. Costs for marketing materials that are related to a specific sales opportunity are also covered. Nova Scotia’s service export industry is valued at $2 billion per year. To find out more about export development and the service export program, see the province’s website at www.gov.ns.ca/econ .
DBT has signed a contract to supply a fourth automated plow longwall system to the Tiefa Coal Mining Group located in Liaoning Province, China. This will bring the total to nine automated plow systems sold into China since delivery of the first system, which commenced production in January 2001.The new package takes a further step in the application of DBT’s state of the art systems by using the PMC®–R roof support technology, the lowest version of the Gleithobel plow capable of operating to an extracted height as low as 800 mm and also the latest standard of AFC drive frames and sprockets. The package also includes significant upgrades to the second and third systems to increase their face lengths to 240 m each; same as the fourth system sold.A spokesperson from Tiefa at the contract signing ceremony held in Beijing stated that the DBT automated plow longwall system has been proven as the most productive, safe and efficient method of mining China’s thin coal seams, while also maximizing extraction. He added that now 26% of Tiefa’s thin seams reserves are mined using the DBT automated plow system and the company’s plans include extending this approach to all of its thin seam reserves. He added that the successful operation of the DBT plows had considerably extended the life of mines by allowing them to access and profitably mine reserves which otherwise would have been uneconomic.The success of the automated plow systems operating in China has sparked interest and sales of the systems in a number of other countries where thin seams with high quality coal are prevalent and the operators wish to eliminate the need for mining costly and unwanted rock in the run of mine product, DBT reports.In China DBT automated plow longwall faces hold all the production records for coal seams of 2 m and below.As normal, part of this latest system will be manufactured in DBT’s Chinese facility in Langfang, which also serves as customer service centre to support DBT longwalls in China.