Vele’s Thoughts

Vele discusses investing in Macedonia, technology, digital photography, business and international affairs

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      Vele Samak works as the Minister for Foreign Investments in Macedonia. The views expressed here are his own personal views and not official news or opinions of the Government of the Republic of Macedonia.

Archive for April, 2003


17th April 2003

When buying a new house or condo in New Jersey you have to wonder who’s actually building this thing. So much new construction has gone up in record time in Jersey City that I often wonder of the quality put into these places. Add to that the fact that most buildings are for rental, then you are probably looking at medium quality with low durability.

Point: I live a one of the recent, but older “new” luxury buildings. This one was put up mere 6 years ago. Since, there have been numerous building issues from faulty fire alarm that always brought visibly irritated fireman to constantly broken garage doors. Now, we have mother of all breaks: someone’s washer flooded which caused shorting of several electric circuits. That was 3 days aga. Today, still no power, sporadic low-power and flickering spectacles that make my apt look like a NYC club scene, and electricians with fans drying out the electrical closets. Something is horribly wrong and hazardous if a new washer floods, and this flood causes such a violent electric outage. Right now, I envy some of the Kosovars and Iraqis. At least their expectations are adjusted for the realities.

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16th April 2003

Just to clarify a few things. I was accepted to Wharton recently and will be moving to Philadelphia with my family for the next 2 years. This has been the end of my search for b-schools which started a few years back, and culminated this spring with a slew of acceptances. Congratulations, you say? Well, Thank you. I am looking forward to a hiatus from my days as a quant analyst and into a more challenging and rewarding career. While I have a number of options that I’m considering pursuing, I haven’t finalized anything. Tech seems to be the perennial interest so I may end up on the west coast at some point.

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16th April 2003

So drivers in New Jersey are bad. They are very bad in fact, which partly explains for the high insurance rates. Let’s not forget the high occurance of fraud, coupled with the no-fault clause, and you get the picture. But that’s not the gold spot yet. The top spot seems to be reserved for Philadelphia. I asked for a quote from my current carrier for Philadelphia which put all insurance to shame: $3k for 6 months!!!! Yeiks!
Just to be safe that I’m not being reamed where the sun don’t shine, I gave them a zip code of a close Philly suburb. The rate came down more than 60%!!! Tickets and claims don’t explain this. I don’t know what drivers do with their cars in Philly, but doesn’t look like they drive, at least not where the law mandates they drive.
Well, since I can’t get out of the car without dolling a significant amount of money, I’ll have to look for the suburbs of Philly for my next two years.

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