13 March

Adam Shaw

13 March

Over the weekend we saw a divergence among government ministers on what the impact would be if the UK fails to reach a separation deal with the EU.

This followed an intervention by Crispin Blunt, chairman of the Commons Foreign Select Committee, who warned that such a move would have serious ramifications for the economy.

Ahead of the Commons vote on whether to accept or reject the Lords’ amendments to the EU (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill this week, the “three Brexiteers” were trotted out for the Sunday media rounds - International Trade Secretary Liam Fox on Sky’s Sophie Ridge on Sunday, Secretary of State for Exiting the EU David Davis on the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show, and Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson on ITV’s Peston on Sunday.

However, consistency of message was somewhat lacking, with Johnson telling Robert Peston that it would be “perfectly ok” if a deal could not be reached, whilst Fox said that not getting a deal “would of course be bad”.

Don’t worry, I’m sure they do have a unified plan…

 

NEWS

Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon is set to increase pressure on Theresa May 24 hours ahead of a crucial Commons vote on Brexit by announcing plans for a second independence referendum. Sturgeon has been demanding that Scotland receives special treatment to be allowed to remain part of the EU single market after the UK leaves, however the UK Government is highly likely to reject those proposals.

Tensions in the Netherlands are rising ahead of elections on Wednesday. Geert Wilders, leader of the Freedom Party, described the country’s 400,000 Turks as a “fifth column” and called for them to be stripped of their dual citizenship. This came amid an intensifying diplomatic row between the Netherlands and Turkey following the former’s decision to block two Turkish ministers from addressing rallies in Rotterdam ahead of a constitutional vote in Turkey to hand the president increased powers. (£)

Remaining Islamic State fighters in Mosul will die in the city, according to Brett McGurk, the senior US official in the counter-IS coalition. Iraqi security forces now control one-third of western Mosul and have cut off the last road out, meaning that any IS fighters left there have no escape route.

 

BUSINESS AND ECONOMY

Mark Tucker is to replace Douglas Flint as chairman of HSBC. An announcement was made ahead of the Hong Kong stock market opening on Monday, confirming rumours that had circulated over the weekend. Tucker, a former Prudential chief executive, leaves his position as chief executive of Asian life insurer AIA to take on the role. His first challenge is to find a new chief executive, with Stuart Gulliver standing down next year. (£)

Bovis Homes is in takeover talks with Galliford Try after the former rejected an approach from fellow house builder Redrow. A deal would see the UK’s sixth and eight largest house builders merge. Galliford Try has confirmed the talks and has made an all-share offer that values Bovis at £1.19bn, with a proposed equity split in the combined group of 52.25% to Galliford shareholders and 47.75% to those of Bovis.

Vodafone is to create 2,100 jobs across the UK by expanding existing customer service centres, with 800 jobs in Manchester, 600 in Newcastle, 300 in Glasgow and the West of Scotland, 150 in Newark, 150 in Stoke-on-Trent and 100 in Cardiff. The mobile operator said the expansion was part of a three-year, £2 billion investment programme designed to improve the quality of service for its 18 million UK customers.

 

MARKETS

Finals

Computacenter, Clarkson, Forbidden Technologies, Grupo Clarin SA GDR (Reg S), H&T Group, Hutchison China Meditech Ltd, Raven Russia Ltd, Telit Communications, Telecom Egypt SAE GDS (Reg S)

Q4 Results

Grupo Clarin SA GDR (Reg S)

AGMs

eServGlobal Limited (DI), Hazel Renewable Energy VCT 1, Hazel Renewable Energy VCT 2, SSP Group

 

COLUMNS OF NOTE

Kevin Pringle uses his Sunday Times column to examine the issue of North Sea oil and its economic significance with regards to Scottish independence. (£)

Writing in The Guardian, Tom Kibasi argues that neither Leavers or Remainers fully understand the challenges that the UK faces post-Brexit.

In the Financial Times, Philip Delves Broughton looks at a management style dubbed "radical candour", which is prevalent in Silicon Valley and apparently allows people both to compete and to be normal human beings. (£)

 

DID YOU KNOW?

The first transaction using a barcode took place in 1974 in Troy, Ohio. The purchased product was a 10-pack of Wrigley’s Juicy Fruit chewing gum.

 

PARLIAMENTARY HIGHLIGHTS

TODAY

House of Commons

 

Oral Questions

 

Defence, including Topical Questions

 

Ten Minute Rule Motion

Reproductive Health (Access to Terminations) – Diana Johnson

 

Legislation

European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill – Consideration of Lords amendments (day 1) – David Davis

 

Debate

Continuation of the Budget debate

 

Adjournment

Effect of the UK leaving the EU on poultry producers - Ian Paisley

 

House of Lords

 

Oral questions

The need for women’s domestic violence and sexual violence services in the UK - Baroness Donaghy

 

Future trade and migration from and to Commonwealth countries after the UK leaves the EU - Baroness Berridge

 

The role of council housing in addressing the issues raised in the White Paper "Fixing our broken housing market" - Lord Kennedy of Southwark

 

Resources available to Border Force, Her Majesty’s Coastguard, the NCA and police forces to combat illegal import of firearms, drugs and other dangerous materials into the UK - Lord Harris of Haringey

 

Legislation

Higher Education and Research Bill - Report stage (day 3) - Viscount Younger of Leckie

 

Short debate

Combatting neglected tropical diseases since the London Declaration - Baroness Hayman

 

Scottish Parliament

 

No business scheduled

 

TOMORROW

 

House of Commons

 

Oral questions

Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, including Topical Questions

 

Ten Minute Rule Motion

Diplomatic Service (United Kingdom Wines and Sparkling Wines) - Nusrat Ghani

 

Consideration of Lords amendments

Consideration of Lords Amendments if necessary

 

Debate

Conclusion of the Budget debate

 

Adjournment

Fuel poverty – Paul Scully

 

House of Lords

 

Oral questions

 

Automotive industries and continued access to the EU single market - Baroness Quin

 

The case for introducing national identity cards in the UK - Lord Campbell-Savours

 

Estimate of the final cost and timetable for completing the electrification of the Great Western Main Line - Baroness Randerson

 

Legislation

Broadcasting (Radio Multiplex Services) Bill - Committee stage - Committee of the Whole House - Baroness Bloomfield of Hinton Waldrist

 

Debate

The economy in the light of the Budget Statement - Baroness Neville-Rolfe

 

Short debate

Undertakings made in 'Our Commitments to you for end of life care: The Government Response to the Review of Choice in End of Life Care' - Baroness Finlay of Llandaff

 

Scottish Parliament

 

Topical Questions

Scottish Government Debate: Inclusive Tourism, Promoting Accessible Tourism and Changing Lives Through the Visitor Economy

 

Cross-party Selection Panel Motion: Appointment of the new Commissioner for Children and Young People in Scotland