February 26, 2021

International Business

LONDON, Dec 26 (Reuters) – China will overtake the United States to become the world’s biggest economy in 2028, five years earlier than previously estimated due to the contrasting recoveries of the two countries from the COVID-19 pandemic, a think tank said.

“For some time, an overarching theme of global economics has been the economic and soft power struggle between the United States and China,” the Centre for Economics and Business Research said in an annual report published on Saturday.

“The COVID-19 pandemic and corresponding economic fallout have certainly tipped this rivalry in China’s favour.”

The CEBR said China’s “skilful management of the pandemic”, with its strict early lockdown, and hits to long-term growth in the West meant China’s relative economic performance had improved.

China looked set for average economic growth of 5.7% a year from 2021-25 before slowing to 4.5% a year from 2026-30.

While the United States was … Read the rest

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About 30,000 customers of Now:Pensions face an anxious Christmas after a serious data breach at the pensions provider led to their sensitive personal details being posted on the internet.

In an email sent to affected customers, the workplace pensions firm warned that names, postal and email addresses, birth dates and National Insurance numbers all appeared in a public forum online.

The company, which manages auto-enrolled and other workplace pensions for 1.8 million workers, said that less than 2% of its customers had been caught up in the incident.

It said the customers’ data had been obtained “by an unknown third party” and blamed the breach, which happened between 11 and 14 December, on an outside contractor. The company had not apologised in any correspondence seen by the Guardian.

Patrick Luthi, the chief executive of Now:Pensions, said: “The data was visible only to users of that forum for a short time … Read the rest

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If you received an Apple device for Christmas, you may have to wait a bit longer to enjoy it. Apple says its iCloud sign-in servers have been having issues since early Christmas morning, preventing some users from activating new Apple Watch, iPhone, HomePod, and other devices.

The issue, according to Apple’s services status page, began just before 5 a.m. on Christmas and is still impacting some users. A tweet from Apple’s support team on Friday suggested that the issue, which is ongoing as of Saturday afternoon, was related to increased holiday demand for the disrupted service.

Fortune has contacted Apple for comment and will update this article with any additional information.

Christmas-related demand might be particularly high because of an unusually late-in-the-year release of the iPhone 12 … Read the rest

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The novel coronavirus has put a challenge of survival in front of the world. While all businesses are being challenged in ways we never knew possible, the hospitality industry is certainly one of the most challenged. With everyone staying inside, people preferring home-cooked food, and commercial places closed due to lockdown, first few months were a nightmare for the restaurants and eateries. However, it was also a time, to think, re-strategize, change priorities, and come up with a plan that could help both the businesses and the people.

When we are on the other side of this crisis and evaluations are made of which brands survived, which brands responded aggressively and creatively and which brands and leaders emerged to thrive, Huey Magoo’s Chicken Tenders is on track to be one such brand. All of its locations managed to stay open and have thrived with its successful family meal options, takeout … Read the rest

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PALM BEACH, Fla/WASHINGTON, Dec 26 (Reuters) – Millions of Americans saw their jobless benefits expire on Saturday after U.S. President Donald Trump refused to sign into law a $2.3 trillion pandemic aid and spending package, protesting that it did not do enough to help everyday people.

Mr. Trump stunned Republicans and Democrats alike when he said this week he was unhappy with the massive bill, which provides $892 billion in badly needed coronavirus relief, including extending special unemployment benefits expiring on Dec. 26, and $1.4 trillion for normal government spending.

Without Mr. Trump’s signature, about 14 million people could lose those extra benefits, according to Labor Department data. A partial government shutdown will begin on Tuesday unless Congress can agree a stop-gap government funding bill before then.

After months of wrangling, Republicans and Democrats agreed to the package last weekend, with the support of the White House. Trump, who hands … Read the rest

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Hotel and restaurant group Whitbread has asked landlords for a 50% rent cut for the next three months as pandemic restrictions continue to hit trading.

The owner of the Premier Inn, Beefeater and Brewers Fayre brands said in a letter to landlords they must “share some of the pain” of lockdown.

Britain’s biggest hospitality group, with 800 hotels in the UK and Ireland, had already warned of big job cuts.

Landlords and commercial property investors will likely resist rent cuts.

They have seen their own finances depleted by rent cuts and restructurings across the hospitality sector. Unlike many rivals, Whitbread had continued to pay rent in full.

Andrew Jones, chief executive of LondonMetric, a FTSE 250 property company with a Premier Inn tenant, said Whitbread has “behaved impeccably” towards to landlords “and so we will look to help them with their cash flow whilst the business recovers”.

But he added: … Read the rest

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The U.S. will require passengers flying from the U.K. to show proof of a negative test for coronavirus, amid rising concerns over a more-contagious COVID-19 strain that is spreading after first emerging in England.

Travelers arriving from the U.K. need to get a negative polymerase chain reaction or antigen test no more than 72 hours before leaving, according to a statement from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC said the order will be signed by President Donald Trump on Friday and come into effect Dec. 28.

Regions from Hong Kong to Canada have temporarily suspended travel from the U.K. as the new coronavirus variant alarmed scientists and governments around the world. Early analysis suggests it may be as much as 70% more transmissible than other circulating strains.

Passengers from the U.K. must provide written documentation of their test to their airline, according to the CDC statement. Carriers … Read the rest

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Food plays a key role in living a balanced and fulfilled life and flavor should not be sacrificed when fueling on-the-go, believes The Chopped Leaf, a leading restaurant brand. Founded in 2009, The Chopped Leaf is an emerging fresh casual lifestyle concept that provides delicious, handcrafted meals served fresh & quick for a healthy, better-for-you food experience.

Born on the shores of Okanagan Lake in Kelowna, BC, The Chopped Leaf is expanding its reach across Canada and the U.S. with one goal in mind: to make you feel good after you eat. Its chef designed menu is always made using fresh ingredients with bold, wholesome, and delicious flavors.

In an interview with Insights Success, Blair Stevens, the Founder and Brand President of the restaurant, shares his valuable insights on how The Chopped Leaf is serving wholesome and delicious meals for everyone

Below are the highlights of the interview:

Brief Read the rest

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INVESTMENT PLEDGES to the Board of Investments (BoI) are likely to fall short of the government’s P1-trillion target this year, according to the agency.

The BoI had received P905 billion of investment pledges as of Dec. 18, BoI Managing Head Ceferino S. Rodolfo told an online news briefing on Tuesday.

“I’m not sure if the target will be met,” he said in mixed English and Filipino. “Two or three weeks ago we were confident, but we’re still waiting for endorsements from other government agencies so I don’t know if those will be out.”

Investment projects awaiting endorsement account for another P68 billion, he said. If all these remaining projects are approved, the BoI would still fall short of the goal by P27 billion.

The agency last year approved a record P1.14 trillion in investment pledges, which it attributed to strong economic fundamentals and consumer confidence. The approved investments rose by … Read the rest

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Britain and the European Union today struck a Brexit deal that will define the country’s relationship with our closest neighbours and largest trading partner for decades to come.

After 24 hours of last-minute haggling over fishing quotas, Boris Johnson tweeted a picture of himself smiling with both thumbs lifted in the air. “The dealis done,” he wrote.

The European commission president Ursula von der Leyen described the negotiations as a “long and winding road” but said the final deal was “fair and balanced”.

She added: “At the end of a successful negotiations journey, I normally feel joy. But today I only feel quiet satisfaction and — frankly speaking — relief.

“I know this is a difficult day for some. To our friends in the UK, I want to say: parting is such sweet sorrow. But to use a line from TS Eliot: what we call the beginning is often the … Read the rest

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