Bitesized Blighty: January 18, 2019
- Sick of reading and hearing about Brexit? So are we. Which is why we try to share some of the deeper impact story on our potential divorce from the EU.
Amazon has advised British businesses trading on its online retail platform to make contingency plans in preparation for a no deal Brexit, which may temporarily prevent selling to customers in the EU. Amazon informed its tens of thousands of UK-based sellers to consider sending stock to its European fulfilment centres to ensure that they can fulfill cross-border orders made by EU customers. Some retailers have already started sending their products into Amazon’s pan-European warehouse, but this has come as some cost to their businesses. Some retailers report that due to this move, they have increased production but products are not being sold immediately. Amazon’s comments to its UK sellers comes on the back of a very chaotic week in UK politics following the defeat of Theresa May’s Brexit plan in the Commons on Tuesday. With no Brexit deal and a Plan B in sight as of Friday afternoon, businesses remain concerned about the uncertainties in the UK’s economy.
- No Nuclear Option
On Thursday, Hitachi announced its decision to suspends work on a £13bn U.K. nuclear project which was due to be operational by the mid-2020s. The decision to halt the project is reportedly due to rising cost, with the company saying the suspension will cost it an estimated £2.1bn. Suspending work on the project puts at risk the jobs of about 9,000 workers who had been expected to be involved in building the two nuclear reactors in North Wales. This news comes amid scrutiny of the UK’s nuclear policy with the U.K. government and Corporations unable to reach agreements on value for money and the right deal for U.K. consumers and taxpayers. Despite today’s announcement, the chief executive of Hitachi’s subsidiary said the company will keep the option to resume development in future. This is just as well, as with all but one power plant due to come offline by 2030, there’s an urgent need for further new nuclear capacity in the U.K.
- Royal News
The Duke of Edinburgh a.k.a Prince Philip, better known in his role as the Queen’s husband, was involved in a car crash on Thursday while driving near Buckingham Palace. Luckily, the 97 year old Prince was not injured in the accident and the other two passengers only suffered minor injuries. Eye witnesses say the Duke’s Range Rover looked quite smashed in with a lot of debris on the road, and those who helped him out of the vehicle reported that he was conscious but very shocked and shaken. The Duke, who celebrates his 98th birthday in five months, gave up flying planes some years ago as he was concerned about a possible incident and the public backlash. This accident may well cause him to stop driving and in the process, give up that fierce independence he’s notorious for.