13 April 2017

ONS study underlines importance of migrant workers in key UK industries

A new report by the Office for National Statistic (ONS) estimates that there were 3.4 million international workers in the UK in 2016, around 11% of the labour market. Of this, 2.2 million were EU nationals and 1.2 million were non-EU citizens. The report also finds that industries including manufacturing, hospitality, healthcare and financial services were particularly reliant on international labour, with non-UK nationals representing 12% of financial services workers, and EU nationals constituting 11% of manufacturing workers. Anna Bodey, migration analyst for the ONS, added, “[International migration] is particularly important to the wholesale and retail, hospitality, and public administration and health sectors, which employ around 1.5 million non-UK nationals.” She also said, “Migrants from eastern Europe, Bulgaria and Romania are likely to work more hours and earn lower wages than other workers, partly reflecting their numbers in lower-skilled jobs. Many EU migrants are also more likely to be over-educated for the jobs they are in.”

Source: ONS: International immigration and the labour market UK, 2016

Hammond: Asian markets and talent development key for UK FinTech

In a speech to a FinTech audience in London, the Chancellor Philip Hammond said, “If the UK is going to make the most of the freedoms it will have after leaving the European Union, we have to build trade links with the fast-growing economies of Asia,” adding that the UK must “continue to attract the brightest and the best from around the world to these shores” while doing better at developing UK talent. He also announced that Barclays would next month create space in London for 500 start-up units in the “largest FinTech accelerator of its kind in Europe,” as well as a partnership between HSBC and Tradeshift to deliver a single platform solution for supply chain, inventory and working capital management.

Source:

Trade association chief warns post-Brexit customs checks would be a “catastrophe”

The chief executive of the UK Chamber of Shipping, Guy Platten, yesterday warned that the introduction of physical customs checks for EU goods after Brexit would be a “catastrophe for the ports and for our sector,” and could reduce their volume of trade. He said, “The [shipment] sailings will still take place, but maybe they won’t be able to fit in as many sailings as they could do before…so that will affect the business of those ferry companies and potentially the viability of routes.” Platten also urged the government to reach an early agreement on customs and establish a transition period to allow businesses and ports sufficient time to adjust to new operations.

Source:

Moscovici: UK stands to lose more than EU from ‘no deal’ scenario

EU Economics Commissioner Pierre Moscovici told Bloomberg TV that, if the Brexit negotiations were to end with no deal, that “would be bad for both sides. We both stand to lose. The UK more than the EU, but the EU too…The aim [of the negotiations] is not to punish the UK, but still, when you’re a member of the club, that’s better than to be out. It’s clear that the situation for the UK will be worse after Brexit, or not as good as it is today or as it was before.” However, Moscovici refused to say what industries he believes would suffer the most under a ‘no deal’ scenario, arguing, “If you start talking about your Plan B, it means you don’t believe in your Plan A.”

Source:

World trade expected to expand by 2.4% in 2017, says WTO

World Trade Organisation (WTO) director-general Roberto Azevedo has said that even though there is “deep uncertainty” about economic and policy developments, world trade is expected to expand by 2.4% in 2017, up from 1.3% in 2016. Speaking at a conference, Azvedo said, “We should see trade as part of the solution to economic difficulties, not part of the problem.” However, he warned, “While there are some reasons for cautious optimism, trade growth remains fragile and there are considerable risks on the downside. Much of the uncertainty around the outlook is political,” adding, “We are still waiting to see how the trade policy itself is going to shape up in the United States.”

Separately, the EU Ambassador to the WTO, Marc Vanheukelen, has warned that the EU-27 are unlikely to agree to a deal in which the UK seeks to transform itself into a regulation-light “Singapore-on-Thames.” He said, “They don’t want a free-rider on their doorstep,” and added that trading with the EU on WTO terms would “lead to a fantastic disruption of the supply chain…There would be tremendous red tape.”

Source:

Manufacturers report export growth in new BCC survey

According to the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) Quarterly Economic Survey, the manufacturing sector and service sector indicate continued expansion, with both experiencing growth in domestic and export sales since the previous quarter. The manufacturing sector also reported its fastest export growth in over two years, while the services sector experienced its strongest sales performance since the referendum vote last June. Adam Marshall, the BCC’s director-general, said, “Many firms tell us their short-term expectations are strong, but that the medium-term picture is far from clear. The rise in inflation seen since last year’s EU referendum is the biggest immediate pressure facing most firms.”

Source:

UK is the third largest OECD development donor and one of six to meet 0.7% UN target

Figures published by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) this week confirmed that the UK donated $18.01bn to the Development Assistance Committee’s $142.6bn spend in 2016, the third largest donor accounting for 12.6% of the total. This places the UK amongst a group of six developed countries including Denmark, Luxembourg, Norway, Sweden and Germany that meet the United Nations target of spending 0.7% of Gross National Income on overseas development assistance. A government spokesman said, “At times of global instability, it’s more important than ever for us to be outward looking and engaged.”

Source:

Senior German SPD politician calls for second Brexit referendum

The general secretary of Germany’s Socialist SPD party, Katarina Barley, has said, “When the [Brexit] referendum was held, nobody really knew what it would be about…A lot of people wrongfully thought that Britain could get a deal like Switzerland or Norway without the inconveniences, without accepting the rulings of the European Court of Justice, without free movement of labour…Now they know that this isn’t the case…and they should be asked [to vote again] on this.”

Source:

We use cookies. Accept | Cookies Policy