Friday newspaper round-up: Brexit deals, White House, productivity, Cuadrilla

Oliver Haill WebFG News | 18 Aug, 2017 08:27 - Updated: 08:27 | | |


EU migrants will be barred from claiming in-work benefits unless they have been employed for at least four years after Brexit under plans to revive a pledge by David Cameron. Ministers are understood to be examining plans to bar migrants who arrive in the UK after March 2019 from claiming in-work benefits unless they have worked in the UK and "contributed" for four years. - The Telegraph

Commonwealth countries have said that the government should give their citizens the same rights as Europeans to come and live in Britain after Brexit. Julie Bishop, the Australian foreign minister, has told The Times that her colleagues would be disappointed and concerned if Britain imposed more restrictive conditions for Australian workers than for those from the European Union, with one Australian government source saying the country’s concerns were shared by New Zealand and Canada and suggested that the issue would be brought up in any trade talks. - The Times

Leaving the European Union without a deal in place would not spell disaster for the UK economy, according to a free market thinktank advocating trade with the rest of the world over a “hamstrung” deal with Brussels. Despite repeated warnings that leaving without an agreement would hurt British companies and consumers, the report from the Institute of Economic Affairs, published on Friday, says the UK could remove all import barriers to achieve lower prices for consumers, increased productivity and higher wages. - Guardian

Encouraging more foreign businesses to set up in the UK may help to solve the country’s chronic productivity problem, analysis by the Bank of England has suggested. Work by two central bank economists published on the Bank Underground blog showed that foreign-owned companies are at least 50 per cent more productive than their British-owned counterparts and the gulf is widening. - The Times

A third White House panel of business leaders is to be scrapped amid the controversy over Donald Trump’s response to neo-Nazi violence in Virginia. Trump’s presidential advisory council on infrastructure will disband along with the two panels that Trump rushed to dissolve on Wednesday when faced with mass resignations of chief executives from some of America’s biggest companies. - Guardian

Air Berlin chief executive Thomas Winkelmann said that the airline was in talks with three competitors and hoped to secure an agreement by the end of September. As well as Lufthansa, the country’s biggest carrier, German media have speculated that Easyjet and Condor, a Thomas Cook subsidiary, are interested in buying some of the assets. - The Times

Cuadrilla has begun drilling at the Lancashire site where it will carry out Britain’s first fracking in six years. The shale gas explorer said that it had started work on the first well at its Preston New Road site on Thursday, almost three years after it originally hoped to do so. It intends to drill two wells and to frack them “at the end of this year”. - The Times

Britain’s factories benefited from a surge in sales to the EU in the first half of this year as export growth outstripped import growth. The UK still imports far more than it exports leaving the country with a goods deficit amounting to €53bn (£48bn) for the six months to June in its trade with the EU, but that is down from €57.8bn in the same period of 2016. - The Telegraph

Soaring demand for British craft beers in South Korea helped UK food and drink exports top £10bn in the first six months of 2017, the best first half figures ever. Ireland, France and the US are the top three destinations for British food and drink, but the east Asian country was the fastest growing with export revenues up 77% as beer sales jumped more than 420% year-on-year to £59.3m, according to the Food & Drink Federation industry body. - Guardian

The new Australian owner of the Homebase DIY business has reported a pre-tax loss of £54 million in its first full year of ownership. In a sign of how tough trading is in the DIY sector and on the high street, Bunnings said that its UK business had been hit by £19 million in one-off “transition and restructuring” costs as well as “significant disruption” to its trading as it sought to reposition the Homebase business. - The Times

Mapping agency Ordnance Survey is reeling in record revenues with businesses and authorities turning to its pinpoint-accurate data. The Government-owned firm reported revenue of £152.8million during the latest financial year, up 4 per cent on the previous year and above £150million for the first time ever, although profits of £42.5million fell from £46.9million. - Mail

Ericsson is understood to be seeking sweeping job cuts outside its native Sweden that may affect its 3,500-strong workforce in the UK. The troubled telecoms equipment maker, which reported a second-quarter operating loss last month of SKr1.2 billion (£115 million) as it continues to grapple with competition from China’s Huawei and Finland’s Nokia and falling spending by telecoms operators, confirmed yesterday that it was accelerating a programme of costcutting and refused to rule out job losses in the UK. - The Times

Supermarkets, restaurants and takeaways will be asked to shrink thousands of products or find other ways to cut their calorie content as part of a Government crackdown on junk foods. Pizzas, ready meals, crisps and burgers are being targeted by health officials in a national plan to combat obesity. - Telegraph

Teenagers are deserting English and history at A level in droves and embracing science in all its forms. Entries for English language fell by 10.2 per cent and history by 8.1 per cent. Mathematics, chemistry and physics, with their promise of well-paid jobs, are soaring in popularity, with maths by far the most popular A-level subject. Some 33 per cent of all entries this year were in so-called Stem subjects: science, technology, engineering and maths. A decade ago, the proportion was 24.8 per cent. - The Times

Hyundai has unveiled plans to move deeper into the fast-growing electric car market with a vehicle that can travel more than 300 miles on each charge, as the race to capture the low-emission market intensifies. The Korean carmaker, the world’s fifth largest, said it aimed to produce the vehicle after 2021. - The Times

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