The Sunak government is considering banning the next generation from buying cigarettes
British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak is carefully exploring measures to prevent the next generation from purchasing cigarettes.
An inside source from the UK government revealed to the media that the Sunak team is conducting an in-depth study of measures similar to the anti-smoking policy implemented in New Zealand last year. One of these measures includes prohibiting the sale of tobacco products to individuals born after January 1, 2009. It is reported that this proposal aims to introduce a series of consumer-focused policies before next year’s elections.
Electric vehicle regulations could cost car manufacturers tens of billions of dollars
An industry association has pointed out that the new post-Brexit trade rules involving electric vehicles could result in European manufacturers facing £3.75 billion in losses over the next three years. These rules are aimed at ensuring that electric vehicles produced in the EU primarily use locally sourced components. However, both manufacturers have stated that they are not yet prepared. The European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) has also warned that these measures could lead to a reduction in production of 480,000 vehicles in EU factories, ultimately passing the cost onto consumers.
UK Financial Institutions Introduce High-Interest Accounts
Competition among financial companies for a share of national savings is intensifying, with the UK’s major mortgage lender, Nationwide Building Society, recently launching a savings account called “Market Leader,” offering an interest rate of up to 8%
According to The Guardian, the Bank of England’s consecutive interest rate hikes have led to an overall increase in savings rates, and many experts predict further rate hikes shortly. Financial data provider Moneyfacts points out that some regular easy-access savings accounts still offer only around 1% interest. Therefore, if savers’ loyalty isn’t being rewarded, they may need to consider to “ditch and switch” these accounts.
HM Revenue and Customs fines tax evaders £13.4 million
A certain management consulting firm, construction company, and golf club have been fined over £13 million for tax evasion, as they deliberately avoided paying £20.3 million in taxes. In the quarterly list of deliberate tax defaulters, HMRC identified businesses and individuals who had unpaid tax liabilities of £20.3 million, a decrease of £1.2 million compared to the previous quarter.
HMRC’s list includes over 135 individuals and businesses who intentionally evaded taxes and were fined £13.4 million. The most serious offender is a management consulting firm that failed to pay £2,709,735 in taxes during a four-year period from June 22, 2018, to February 16, 2022. James Edward Croft, the sole director of Specialist Outsourcing Limited, now faces a fine of £1,896,814.50.
British Business Bank Reports Annual Loss of £147 Million
The British Business Bank (BBB) has announced that its annual pre-tax loss has exceeded £147 million. The bank cited broader economic issues leading to a decrease in the valuations of the companies it has invested in. Despite facing challenges in the economic environment, the company has successfully secured financing agreements totalling £1.6 billion this year. BBB was established in 2014 to provide loans to UK small businesses and acquire equity in them to assist them in their start-up and expansion endeavours.
According to the bank, in the 12 months ending in March, its investment value declined by £146 million, representing a 5% decrease. This is a significant gap compared to the £619 million profit from the previous year.