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World British budget to tackle virus fallout, aid recovery

10:05  03 march  2021
10:05  03 march  2021 Source:   afp.com

Participatory budget for the region: Val-de-Marne wants cycling and biodiversity

 Participatory budget for the region: Val-de-Marne wants cycling and biodiversity © LP / Jean Cittone Illustration. Urban agriculture, a major development issue. To your votes! Until March 8, choose the best ecological and solidarity projects in Val-de-Marne. The winners will be funded by the region, as part of its participatory budget, up to € 500 million over five years. Two conditions to vote: live or work in Ile-de-France, and be over 15 years old. Five themes are highlighted this year: biodiversity, cycling, cleanliness, energy and health.

Bailey, who takes over from governor Mark Carney on March 16, singled out small and medium-sized firms for such aid , likely under a joint effort with the government and British retail banks. "It's now likely (Sunak's) spending plans will need to be reined in, with more money put aside to tackle a widespread outbreak of COVID-19," said Jake Trask, a "We can expect this budget to be more about bolstering the UK economy in the face of this potential national health emergency instead of the announcement of widespread infrastructure projects to boost economic growth that many were hoping for," Trask added.

Britain unveils its first post-Brexit budget on Wednesday, with all eyes on emergency government measures to ease the economic pain from the coronavirus outbreak. It comes the day after a minister in the health department, Nadine Dorries, tested positive for COVID-19, raising concern about whether Bailey, who takes over from governor Mark Carney on March 16, singled out small and medium-sized firms for such aid , likely under a joint effort with the government and British retail banks. "It's now likely (Sunak's) spending plans will need to be reined in, with more money put aside to tackle a widespread

British finance minister Rishi Sunak unveils his annual budget Wednesday promising measures to safeguard businesses and jobs, while tackling virus-fuelled debt as England prepares to exit its third lockdown.

a man holding a box: Britain's Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak with the Budget Box in 2020. The government has already indicated it plans to extend support to pay wages for businesses forced to shut during the pandemic © DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS Britain's Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak with the Budget Box in 2020. The government has already indicated it plans to extend support to pay wages for businesses forced to shut during the pandemic

Ahead of the budget statement in parliament, Prime Minister Boris Johnson's Conservative government said it would extend its furlough scheme paying the bulk of wages for millions of private-sector workers until the end of September, five months longer than planned.

Budget 2021: The challenge facing Sunak

  Budget 2021: The challenge facing Sunak The BBC looks at the state of the UK economy ahead of the spring Budget.In his 3 March statement, the chancellor will outline the state of the UK economy and its outlook for the future - and give details of the government's plans for raising or lowering taxes.

In his Budget statement to Parliament, Sunak promised a huge fiscal stimulus “to support British people, British jobs and British businesses through this moment.” It will be accompanied by the biggest jump in borrowing since 2013, and the largest tax-and-spending giveaway since 1992. Whatever happens with Brexit talks, Sunak warned the virus will inevitably lead to a reduction in consumer spending. But he said he was in “constant communication” with the Bank of England over the “coordinated” and “comprehensive” response to the virus . The chancellor set out his multi-billion

LONDON — Britain unveils its first post-Brexit budget on Wednesday, with all eyes on emergency government measures to ease the economic pain from the coronavirus outbreak. It comes the day after a minister in the health department, Nadine Dorries, tested positive for COVID-19, raising concern about Dorries, who helped craft the legislation to fight the outbreak, is the first British politician to be diagnosed with COVID-19. Six people have died in Britain from the virus , with more than 370 confirmed cases. The Bank of England's incoming chief Andrew Bailey last week said UK-based companies

"We will continue doing whatever it takes to support the British people and businesses through this moment of crisis," Chancellor of the Exchequer Sunak will say, according to pre-released excerpts of his speech.

"There's now light at the end of the tunnel with a roadmap for reopening, so it's only right that we continue to help business and individuals through the challenging months ahead -- and beyond."

Sunak will also say that once the economy is "on the way to recovery, we will need to begin fixing the public finances -- and I want to be honest today about our plans to do that.

"In today's budget we begin the work of building our future economy."

The multi-billion-pound furlough scheme has contributed to soaring government debt, which Sunak may tackle in part by announcing a rise in corporation tax or a levy on company profits.

Vaccine programme to receive £1.7bn 'shot in the arm' in Budget

  Vaccine programme to receive £1.7bn 'shot in the arm' in Budget A huge boost in spending on the UK's COVID-19 vaccine programme will be announced by the chancellor in the Budget on Wednesday. Rishi Sunak will pledge a further £1.65bn for jabs, a cash injection hailed by the Treasury as a "shot in the arm" for the vaccine roll-out.The chancellor will also promise to invest a further £33m in vaccine testing and development to protect against future outbreaks and variants.

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said Tuesday, April 14 that suggestions from some in the West that Russia had opaque motives for helping Italy respond to the virus resulted from "Russophobia." (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko). “We believe that it should become a very good reinforcement for our countries' economies when they're coming out of the crisis stage and resume economic operations,” Sergey Lavrov told reporters after a meeting of BRICS foreign ministers dedicated to the virus outbreak.

Ireland is expected to announce a recovery fund to deal with the twin economic threats of a disorderly Brexit and the coronavirus pandemic when it unveils its 2021 budget on Tuesday. The finance ministry last month forecast the nation will have an annual average unemployment rate of 15.9 percent this year, more than three times the 2019 figure. 2020 GDP is expected to drop by 2.5 percent, with some coronavirus fallout offset by robust performance in the export sector, notably pharmaceuticals.

At 19 percent, Britain's corporation tax rate is the nation's lowest on record and one of the smallest in the Group of 20 bloc of wealthy nations.

The government has cut taxes during the pandemic -- reducing sales tax on food, accommodation and attractions.


Video: UK support being withdrawn too early and too fast, economist says (CNBC)

It has also lifted the threshold at which stamp duty is due on home purchases, helping property buyers and the construction sector.

Some or all of these measures could be extended in the budget, according to reports.

- Cost of virus -

Britain is the worst-hit country in Europe with more than 120,000 Covid deaths and four million cases but its economic recovery hopes have been boosted by its rapid vaccination programme that has seen millions of adults receive a jab.

The economy shrunk almost 10 percent in 2020 because of the impact of the pandemic, with activity also hampered by turmoil ahead of Britain's eventual exit from the European Union.

UK to extend virus support, may raise tax in budget

  UK to extend virus support, may raise tax in budget Britain is expected to keep vast emergency financial support propping up the UK's virus-battered economy when unveiling its annual budget Wednesday, but could also raise tax to fight surging debt. Analysts argue that Britain must use the budget to both extend coronavirus financial support measures and tackle inequalities exacerbated by Covid. In a joint report, the Institute for Fiscal Studies and Citi bank noted that lower-income households had not been able to save as much cash as richer counterparts, sparking greater inequality in society during the crisis.

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson promises help for families and businesses. In the US, the Trump administration is preparing a near tn aid package. The EU has banned all non-essential travel in the Schengen free-travel zone. In Italy the number of deaths has passed 2,503, Spain has reported In Britain, government measures to tackle the virus outbreak are "catastrophic for businesses and jobs", says trade association Hospitality UK. New financial help is welcome but does not address "immediate cash flow problems" says the British Beer and Pub Association, which warns of redudancies.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron agreed to support a 500 billion-euro (6 billion) aid package to help the European Union recover from the coronavirus pandemic in a major step toward tighter integration. Following a videoconference between the two leaders, Merkel said that Germany would accept a fund within the framework of the EU budget , financed by additional The ECB is concerned that if it doesn’t mop up the massive amount of debt needed to combat the fallout from the virus , financial markets will tighten and delay the recovery .

Reflecting the problems, UK unemployment has shot up to a five-year high of 5.1 percent.

England's third lockdown will start to be lifted from Monday, with the reopening of schools, followed by non-essential shops and hospitality in the coming months.

Since April 2020, or soon after the UK's first virus lockdown, the government's net borrowing has ballooned by £271 billion ($378 billion, 314 billion euros), according to official data.

The state has pumped out around £280 billion in support packages over the past year to fight the virus fallout, according to the Treasury.

The budget is also expected to confirm the launch of an Infrastructure Bank with £12 billion in capital and £10 billion in government guarantees.

The lender will be formed to finance private-sector projects in the green economy, focusing on areas such as carbon capture and renewable energy.

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A Massive Global Hunt for Variants Is Under Way .
Tracking the coronavirus’s evolution, letter by letter, has given us a powerful tool—if we can figure out how to use it.The first genome for the virus causing a mysterious illness we had not yet named COVID-19 was shared by scientists on January 10, 2020. That single genome alerted the world to the danger of a novel coronavirus. It was the basis of new tests as countries scrambled to find the virus within their own borders. And it became the template for vaccines, the same ones now making their way to millions of people every day. That first coronavirus genome may have been the most important 30,000 letters published in all of 2020.

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