Sirius Business Bulletin - 5th February 2021
This bulletin provides a summary of topical news, announcements and policy developments affecting business across the UK.
More drivers plan to ‘go electric’ when they change cars
Nearly eight in ten drivers think that pure electric cars are still too expensive when compared to conventional vehicles of a similar size. However, an increasing number are planning to buy an electric model when they next change their car.
Read more about the research at: www.alphabet.com/en-gb/auto-digest/more-drivers-ever-plan-go-electric-when-they-next-change-their-cars
Fall in UK car production in 2020
UK car production fell by 29.3% in 2020, according to the latest figures published by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). Output in December was also down by 2.3% to 71,403 units. The SMMT said 2020 was the worst year for UK car makers since 1984 due to disruption caused by Covid-19 lockdowns, border closures and component supply issues.
Read more about the fall at: www.smmt.co.uk/2021/01/uk-car-production-down- 29-3-as-coronavirus-slams-brakes-on-sector/
£20 million to increase the number of chargepoints
The Department for Transport has announced that £20 million will be made available to increase the number of on-street electric vehicle chargepoints in towns and cities across the UK.
Read more about the funding at: www.gov.uk/government/news/government-powers-up-electric-vehicle-revolution-with-20-million chargepoints-boost
Post-Brexit shellfish export ban Is indefinite
The EU has banned the UK shellfish industry from selling live mussels, oysters, clams, cockles and scallops to its member states. As the UK is now a third country, it is not permitted to ship live seafood to the EU unless it has already been treated in purification plants. The ban was expected to end in April 2021 but the European Commission has confirmed that the current arrangement will be in place indefinitely.
Read more about the ban at: www.politicshome.com/news/article/exclusive-eu-tells-british-shellfish-traders-that-a-post-brexit-export-ban-is indefinite-not-temporary
Deadline for CBD novel food applications approaching
The Food Standards Agency is reminding the CBD industry that they must submit novel food applications for validation before 31 March 2021 to continue to sell their products in England and Wales. CBD is a chemical found naturally in the cannabis plant and extracts can be found in a range of products such as oils, confectionery, bakery products and drinks.
Read more about the deadline at: www.food.gov.uk/news-alerts/news/deadline-for-cbd-novel-food-applications-approaching
UK sees sharp fall in spending
Figures published by the ONS have revealed that spending on credit and debit cards is 35% lower than in February 2020. Economists also believe that the economy will shrink in the first quarter of 2021 due to lockdowns and post-Brexit trading arrangements. However, the decline is likely to be much less than the 19% fall during March and April 2020.
Read more about the figures at: www.businessoffashion.com/news/retai1/uk-sees-sha rp-fa11-in-spending-more-furloughs-under-new-lockdown?
Buy-now-pay-later products to be regulated
Interest-free buy-now-pay-later credit agreements will be regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in order to protect consumers under plans announced by the government. Under the plans, providers of credit agreements will have to carry out affordability checks before lending and ensure customers are treated fairly.
Read more about the plans at: www.gov.uk/government/news/buy-now-pay-later-products-to-be-regulated
Police launch guide for construction site security
A guide to construction site security has been published by Secured by Design (SBD), the police security initiative. The guide covers a range of considerations from perimeter security to site access, site offices, lighting CCTV, vehicle protection, plant, fire prevention, and how to deal with ‘urban explorers’.
Read more about the guide at: www.constructionmanagermagazine.com/police-launch-guide-for-construction-site-security/
Measures to make online games safer
The Gambling Commission has announced a package of strict measures that will strengthen the protections and controls for those who gamble through online slots games. The measures include limits on spin speeds, and a permanent ban on features that speed up play or celebrate losses as wins.
Read more about the measures at: www.gamblingcommission.gov.uk/news-action-and-statistics/news/2021/Gambling-Commission-announces package-of-changes-which-make-online-games-safer-by-design.aspx
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