Wednesday newspaper round-up: Peace talks, UK GDP, Sunak, EDF, Heathrow, UK heatwave

by | Jul 13, 2022

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Russia and Ukraine are set to hold their first talks with UN and Turkish officials aimed at breaking a months-long impasse over grain exports.
The four-way meeting in Istanbul comes as exports across the Black Sea continue to be blocked by Russian warships and sea mines Kyiv has laid to avert a feared amphibious assault. – The Guardian

UK production grew by 0.9% in May, driven by 1.4% growth in manufacturing and a 0.3% rise in electricity, gas, steam and air conditioning supply.

Construction output increased by 1.5% in May and is now at its highest level since monthly records began in 2010. – The Guardian

Rishi Sunak has vowed to run the economy like Margaret Thatcher if he becomes the next prime minister, telling Tory leadership rivals: “You have to earn what you spend”. Speaking to The Telegraph in his first campaign interview, the former chancellor likened Baroness Thatcher’s upbringing above her father’s grocery shop to his childhood helping in his mother’s pharmacy.

Countering claims that his refusal to promise immediate tax cuts shows he is not a true conservative, Mr Sunak said that, by prioritising inflation, he was following the Iron Lady’s economic approach more than his rivals. “We will cut taxes and we will do it responsibly,” he said. That’s my economic approach. I would describe it as common sense Thatcherism. I believe that’s what she would have done.” – The Telegraph

Emmanuel Macron will have to pay up to €10.0bn to fully nationalise nuclear power giant EDF. France’s economy ministry is poised to buy up the remaining 16% of the company not already owned by the state, which is expected to cost between €8.0bn and €10.0bn for the stake, according to Reuters.

The French government will have to buy out shareholders including Blackrock, Thornburg Investment Management, and Vanguard, and purchase €2.4bn of convertible bonds. Last week, France announced it would take EDF into full public ownership to secure “control of the production” of its energy supplies. – The Telegraph

Heathrow will cap passenger numbers at 100,000 a day over the peak summer season in an attempt to limit disruption at the airport. Britain’s largest airport said that it had ordered airlines to “stop selling summer tickets to limit the impact on passengers”.

The unprecedented cap will run until 12 September. Airlines had planned to operate flights with a daily capacity averaging 104,000 over the period, according to the airport. – The Times

Trains could be cancelled and journey times doubled as rail bosses prepare to introduce speed limits because of the hot weather. Roads might also be closed, and the NHS and other critical services are braced for disruption.

Temperatures reached 31.7C in Wisley, Surrey yesterday and weather forecasting models have suggested it is possible – although not likely – that temperatures could reach 40C in the UK next weekend. – The Times

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