Exports collapse – three out of four trucks leave the UK without a load
Status: 6:32 p.m. | Reading time: 4 minutes
After the traffic jams at the turn of the year, the movement of goods between the EU and Great Britain normalized – but only in one direction. British exports have plummeted. Prime Minister Boris Johnson dismisses these as “teething troubles”.
BIn January, the first month since the end of the Brexit transition period, ritical exports to the EU fell by 68 percent compared to the previous year. This is confirmed by estimates by the Road Haulage Association (RHA) after surveys of internationally active freight forwarders. The numbers would largely agree with his own information, confirmed Richard Ballantyne, managing director of the British Ports Association, the “Observer” the development.
Up to three quarters of the trucks that deliver to Great Britain would also drive back without a load. On the one hand, this is due to operational disruptions on the British side, but also to the fact that numerous British companies have stopped exporting to the EU due to many uncertainties.
Since the beginning of January, the rules of the EU customs union and the internal market no longer apply to trade with Great Britain. Shortly before the end of the year, both sides agreed a free trade agreement that largely avoids customs duties. Nevertheless, a large number of additional documents and border controls have since become necessary, from extensive forms to veterinary checks.
Restricted movement of goods
The industry information has not been officially confirmed. The government merely pointed out that problems and waiting times at the border are minimal and that traffic flows well through the port of Dover. Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his ministers have in recent weeks more often dismissed references from industry associations and companies to numerous trade obstacles since Brexit as “teething troubles” that would take care of themselves over time and become more routine.
The practitioners see it very differently. In a letter to Michael Gove, the Minister for the Cabinet Office who is also responsible for Brexit implementation, RHA boss Richard Burnett warned last week that urgent measures should be taken. “We have tirelessly pointed out the severe consequences of the changes, but it is very clear that the government is doing nothing to address them,” several British media quoted from the letter.
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The number of customs agents must be increased particularly urgently. Around 10,000 are currently available to help companies with the forms and documents that have also become necessary as a result of Brexit. Months ago the government itself estimated that 50,000 would be needed.
Criticism of the border controls in Northern Ireland
The RHA also reiterated its demands to temporarily relax the checks on the inner-UK border into Northern Ireland to ease pressure on transporters and ensure supplies to the region. In order to prevent a land border on the Irish island, the rules of the internal market continue to apply in Northern Ireland. This leads to checks in the ports.
Current data from the statistical office for January are not yet available. Dmitry Grozoubinsky, founder of ExplainTrade, a consultancy on trade issues, pointed out that the weak export data would also reflect inventory levels from December and the corona pandemic. Freight figures cannot be transferred one-to-one to trade development either. Still, the situation looks pretty difficult.
Customs controls for food from April
Observers warn that the situation is likely to worsen significantly in the coming weeks. So far, customs controls have only been carried out on the EU side. However, controls on imports into Great Britain are also gradually being tightened.
For the first product groups, especially food, this tightening will apply from April, and more will be added in July. Many companies are still facing some of the biggest problems, warned the consulting firm KPMG.
Other indicators also point to delivery difficulties for UK companies. The IHS Markit Purchasing Managers’ Index shows extreme delays in deliveries for January, which are by far the highest since data collection began, with the exception of April 2020, the start of the first lockdown.
“While manufacturing is providing much-needed support for economic growth in many states, while services are being hit hard by Covid-19, manufacturing in Britain is near a standstill,” said Rob Dobson of IHS Markit. “A mixture of strict Covid-19 restrictions and Brexit has led to almost record high disruptions in supply chains, lower exports and rising costs.”
11:04 a.m.: Olympia in Tokyo – Scientists warn of corona mutations
Scientists worldwide have warned of the corona dangers with full understanding for the will to host the Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo. “I can understand how athletes are feeling,” said Michael Head, a global health specialist at the University of Southampton, “but from a public health perspective, as things stand, the Olympics make absolutely no sense.” Even if everyone involved is vaccinated, there are “certain variants that are resistant to such a vaccination,” said Head, who warned of a particular danger: “Mixing people from so many different countries would create new mutations of the virus inevitably accelerate. ” Highly contagious mutations from Great Britain, South Africa and Brazil are currently rampant alongside the original corona virus.
Atsuo Hamada, a Japanese specialist in infectious diseases, has two hearts beating in its chest. On the one hand, he welcomes the Olympic Games in Japan, but on the other hand, he also admits that he would be against hosting them elsewhere. “Even without the pandemic, the games are a mass gathering and encourage all types of infection,” Hamada said. It is therefore “unthinkable” to “allow spectators from all over the world to enter”. Every single viewer brings “significant risks” with them, according to Hamada.
It’s outrageous. Any reasonable human imagination must be offended by the reasoning with which Alexei Navalny was tried and convicted in Russia. It is unclear how far Nawalny’s affection for a liberal rule of law permeated with the idea of tolerance extends. However, this does not matter in view of the fact that it is nonsense in every conceivable respect to accuse a patient who is recovering in Germany that he did not meet probation requirements.
All criticism of Russia’s leadership – both abroad and in Russia itself – is concentrated in Navalny’s fate. Since Vladimir Putin was elected president in 2000, the Russian government has not been so weak. Undoubtedly, the absurd process did not take place without Putin’s word of power. In Germany and other countries, many want to see the head of state punished immediately.
The request is understandable, even if it is delicate from a diplomatic and geopolitical point of view. The chosen means is now anything but obvious: the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, it is claimed, should not be completed. As a result of “solidarity” with the “captured demonstrators” who took to the streets for Navalny, the Green politician Franziska Brantner demanded that construction should now be stopped. If it did, Germany would certainly harm Russia, but first and foremost itself.
Nord Stream 2, although a project approved by the neighboring states and compliant with European law, has always been controversial. As is well known, the Russian government-affiliated company Gazprom is behind the project. There are also some European groups: Royal Dutch Shell in the Netherlands and Britain, Engi in France, OMV in Austria, Wintershall and Uniper in Germany and others. The pipeline is almost ready. The performance of the engineers and all workers is as immense as the whole undertaking: from the gas fields of Siberia through Russia, then under the Baltic Sea to Germany, it’s around 5000 kilometers. The laying of the pipes in Russia was mainly financed by Gazprom. Laying it through the Baltic Sea alone will have cost around 9.5 billion euros in the end.
Notably, the cost is reasonably in line with plans. It is also noteworthy that 9.5 billion euros in comparison to the costs of 8.2 billion euros for the ridiculous Stuttgart 21 train station look like little. The companies involved could probably afford to give up Nord Stream 2 – firing people is part of the business concept of most corporations these days.
Germany could do without Nord Stream 2: Then the citizens would pay more money for the gas, which would then be obtained from conventional and other sources – for example from the expensive fracking gas that the USA extracts under pressure. “Pressure” in many ways. In the United States, the extraction of fracked gas, which is extracted from the earth by means of injected liquids, is destroying entire areas of land. And in the EU, the US has not made itself popular because, with reference to Russia’s machinations, it exerted pressure on companies that participated or wanted to participate in the construction of Nord Stream 2: Sanctions were threatened or imposed, also for the purpose of American fracked gas for sale.
Because moral and economic reasons are intertwined in a tangle in the discussion about Nord Stream 2, a hint from Nikos Tsafos is just right. Tsafos works at the American think tank Center for Strategic and International Studies. His advice is so good that anyone could think of it: The question is not “whether” Nord Stream 2 should be finished; rather, the interests of the various countries should be taken into account.
Let’s do that here, starting with Poland.
The current Polish government relies on nationalism. In memory of Poland’s suffering in World War II and the time under the thumb of the Soviet Union, Russia is not trusted and Germany is little trusted. It has long been customary for Russian gas that arrives in Germany to be pumped back to the east. It is then cheaper there because Germany has good customers and has corresponding discounts. But the Polish government wants to make their country independent of Russian gas. It is better to buy gas from Norway (a new pipeline is under construction) and the more expensive American fracked gas, which is delivered by ship.
Some in Germany are concerned about Ukraine. They fear a Russian invasion. In short, that is unlikely at the moment. Putin has enough problems in the Russia he rules. Ukraine has not been able to recover economically since independence because – democracy or not – selfish oligarchs were in charge. The pipeline network dates from the years of the Soviet Union and has not been properly maintained since then. The Russian natural gas, which flows through Ukrainian pipelines to Europe, has to pass numerous compressor stations, some of which may no longer be completely leak-proof, so that methane gas could escape into the environment. The gas that is to run through Nord Stream 2 would pass fewer and more modern compressor stations on the way from the Russian coast to Western Europe.
For years, Ukraine has not been getting its gas directly from Russia, but via return flow from Western Europe. Anyone who claims that Nord Stream 2 should not be built because Ukraine would then be at the mercy of Russia is wrong. If Nord Stream 2 is used, Ukraine will lose transit fees, but this could be offset with help from the EU (the EU is already giving a lot of money to promote the democratization of the country). During the Soviet Union, gigantic gas storage facilities were set up in the Ukraine; they surpass everything else that can be found anywhere else in Europe. These storage tanks are necessary because there are always times, in summer for example, when less gas is used than usual. The Ukrainian ambassador to Germany, Andrij Melnyk, recently took part in a zoom discussion. Then he said something astonishing: Ukraine could come to terms with the completion of Nord Stream 2, but would then then become the number one hydrogen supplier in the EU. Hydrogen is the energy source of the future. How this can be used to replace oil and gas is not yet entirely clear; research is ongoing.
France’s Secretary of State for Europe Clément Beaune said a few days ago that work on Nord Stream 2 should cease. That was cheap. France is still running its numerous nuclear power plants at the moment; it imports fracked gas. France needs little natural gas from Russia. With the new administration in the USA, they want to be on good terms. One can put the “Franco-German friendship” aside for once. Beaune doesn’t have to worry about the French company Engi, which has a stake in Nord Stream 2: Engi’s investments are very broad.
Germany would also like to have good relations with the USA. Therefore new ports are planned where the fracked gas from the USA can be landed; The first thing that will be ready is a port in Brunsbüttel in northern Germany. The construction itself is superfluous: fracked gas is at the expense of the environment. And now there are already 36 terminals in Europe where fracked gas can be brought; and all of them are underutilized.
Germany is in a special position. 40 percent of the Russian gas that flows into the EU is used in Germany. Germany also obtains gas from Norway, 20 to 30 percent of its consumption. But production in Norway will end. If Poland gets its gas from Norway, there will be less waste for Germany. The Netherlands, from which Germany also purchases gas, will stop production in the North Sea quite abruptly. Seismic upheavals are looming, which the flat country cannot afford.
Germany’s special position also consists in having to take note of all the concerns of all countries. If Poland imports the largest part of the quota of Norwegian natural gas previously intended for Germany, this is to be accepted. Until hydrogen technology is fully developed, Germany has to heat with oil, a little nuclear power, a little coal and, of course, natural gas. And most of the natural gas comes from Russia. Even if Putin is criticized for a criminal, he is in line with his Soviet predecessors: Treaties with Germany are being kept.
What few have noticed: If the West is somehow interested in Russia not turning completely economically to China and that human rights are respected there, Nord Stream 2 must be completed. Gazprom has invested billions to build the pipeline from Siberia. Andreas Metz, who works for the Eastern Committee of German Business, said: “This makes Russia more dependent on the EU, because this pipeline cannot even be reversed towards China.” The Eastern Committee stated in a public letter : “The fewer overlapping interests Russia has with the EU, the less European influence there will be.”
Assuming Nord Stream 2 would not be completed, we would have to do with an industrial ruin that would not even be suitable for a museum because all the pipes are laid underground. Since the USA is still opinion-forming and a guarantor of security for the Western world, the American political analyst Nikos Tsafos should finally be quoted once again: “There is the impression – in Washington, in Berlin, in Brussels – that sanctions (against Russia) are just the Hide the lack of a strategy how the US should deal with Russia. “
We need not assume that Tsafos’ recommendation will be taken up. But we should hope that Nord Stream 2 will be finished.
Lou Dobbs was one of the most recognizable faces on the conservative television broadcaster Fox News. The Trump supporter caused a stir again and again, now his time at Fox is over.
One of the most loyal supporters Donald Trumpsin the media world is losing its broadcast. Lou Dobbs will soon no longer be at Fox News moderate.
Dobbs had spread the conspiracy theory over and over on television that 2020 presidential election be manipulated.
All the news about the former US president can be found in Trump-News.
New York – Lou Dobbs is one of the most loyal followers Donald Trumps, as a moderator Fox News he offered the former US presidents a broad stage. Now he has to Moderator his place at Fox vacate.
Defended on his talk show Dobbs his idol to the last. Among other things the Conspiracy theorythat Trump and the Republicansthe US presidential election “Stolen” was often enough a topic in his program. There is still a lack of evidence Dobbs stayed the lie and the hope that Donald Trump but still the choice could tip, loyal.
Fox News host Dobbs is looking for evidence of alleged election fraud against Donald Trump
On December 2nd, two weeks after the election, he said on his broadcast: “This is fraud, this is a politically corrupt Justice Department in Washington, DC, a politically corrupt FBI”. He later added that “there is no silence Surrender of this constitutional republic“Will give.
Also held two months after the election Dobbs on election victory Trumps stated that evidence of this was still lacking. So he quickly expanded it Conspiracy theory, allegedly evidence is being withheld on purpose. “It has been eight weeks since the election and we still have no verifiable, tangible evidence of the crimes that everyone knows began,” said Dobbs. “We know this happened in Nevada, we know it happened in Pennsylvania and some other states. Even so, we find it hard as hell to find actual evidence of this. Why? ”Two days later, an angry mob of radicals stormed out Trumpanhängern the Kapitol.
Supporters of Donald Trump: Moderator Lou Dobbs accused Smartmatic of voting machine fraud
Also tried hard Dobbs, the “fraud” dem Voting machine manufacturer Smartmatic To blame, of course, there was again no evidence. The claim that their voting machines could be manipulated seriously damaged the image of the UK-based company. The group reacted and resisted, Dobbs had to show a video on his show that exposed and corrected his lies. The moderator did not admit his mistakes. Instead, he directed the video, saying, “There are many opinions about the integrity of the choice, the irregularities of postal voting, the Voting machines and the voting software ”. Why admit mistakes in an election that “everyone knows” was manipulated.
Smartmatic showing the video was not enough. The company is pursuing a defamation lawsuit against Fox because their business was “irreversibly damaged by the unsubstantiated election fraud conspiracies and disinformation”. Disputed amount: $ 2.7 billion. One day after the lawsuit, the news came that Lou Dobbs no longer for Fox would work.
Fox News: Program changes to blame for Trump supporters kicked out
According to the broadcaster, the exit has Dobbs nothing to do with the multi-billion dollar lawsuit. It is the result of ongoing discussions about program changes across the company. Also the allegations of Smartmatic shows Fox back. “We are proud of our coverage of the 2020 election and will vigorously defend ourselves against this unfounded lawsuit in court, ”the company said in a statement.
Whether the expulsion Dobbs‘ really has nothing to do with the lawsuit is questionable. Perhaps the station wanted to get rid of the controversial presenter for a long time, as he regularly caused scandals before. In addition, the relationship between Dobbs and Fox not the best since the presenter opposed his own broadcaster. The only thing for Dobbs really counted in the last few years Donald Trump. When he referred to fallen soldiers as “losers” and “sucker” (sucker), he opposed himself Foxby claiming their reporting was false.
Trump – its alliance with Fox has broken – seems very grateful for the service of Lou Dobbs on the media front over the past few years. After that Friday came out Dobbs Broadcast is canceled, the ex-president published a message: “Lou Dobbs is and was great. Nobody loves America more than Lou. He had a large and loyal following who will closely follow his next steps, and this following includes me. ”(Sebastian Richter)
The laying work for the controversial Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline in Denmark could largely be completed by the end of April 2021, according to a local authority. Until then, the plan is to lay the two pipelines in the country’s waters south and south-west of the island of Bornholm to the German-Danish maritime border – this came out from a report from the Danish Maritime Administration (Søfartsstyrelsen), with which the authority informed seafarers about events See informed. The work should therefore be carried out by the pipe-laying ship “Fortuna” with the support of several other ships.
Nord Stream 2 AG initially did not comment. “We will inform you in due course,” it said.
After a construction freeze, Nord Stream 2 AG continued laying work on the controversial German-Russian Baltic Sea gas pipeline despite US sanctions. The USA and several EU countries are against the almost completed billion-dollar project because they fear that it will become too dependent on Russian gas.
The deployment of the National Guard to secure the Capitol in Washington is expected to cost just under $ 500 million by mid-March. So far, 284 million has been estimated for personnel and another 199 million for general operational costs, said Defense Department spokesman John Kirby.
The National Guard had moved to reinforce local security forces after the forcible storming of the Capitol by supporters of then President Donald Trump on January 6th. As a result, more than 20,000 soldiers were temporarily active in the capital Washington. The security measures around the Capitol, the seat of the US Congress, have been significantly strengthened since then.
A Pentagon spokesman said that around 6,200 National Guard soldiers were currently deployed to ensure security in Washington. The newspaper “Washington Post” had already reported last week about the costs of the deployment of the National Guard. At the time, however, the Pentagon did not comment on the cost.