UK’s biggest coal miner is at the brink of collapse that can cost the UK 2,000 abandoned jobs. Last year, UK Coal was rescued by the Pension Protection Fund, which it chose over a proposal by Hargreaves Services to buy the company for £20 million.
UK Coal is asking for £10 million in government funding to close three of its deep pits in Britain and sell its surface mines.
UK Coal’s dilemma stems from the internationally low price of coal and it is burning its reserves despite a lack in break-even on its spendings. The strong pound and cheap imports of coal internationally, particularly Russia, had lowered the value of locally-produced coal.
According to General Secretary of the National Union of Mineworkers Chris Kitchen, the UK government should support indigenous and local energy supplies, especially now that the Ukraine crisis will have the UK turn a diplomatic row against Russia with economic sanctions, which would limit the supply of coal imported into the country.
The PPF helped UK Coal in July 2013 by providing a £2.2 payment, a £60m loan note and a promise of future dividends. It took on the liabilities of the company pension scheme that cost around £500 million for the company’s 7,000 members.
UK MPs called for higher annual aids for Myanmar from £60 to £100 million despite concerns. The International Development Committee said that UK could help bring reform in the country. However, critics said Myanmar’s development heavily relies on removing their cynical attitude to change their system.
The international community is concerned with the Human Rights record of Myanmar, previously known as Burma, because of its imprisoning of political dissidents, handling of government protests and cases of prisoner torture.
In 2013, the European Union had cautiously dropped all sanctions against the country.
Concerns mainly surround Myanmar’s military having greater power over the public. Critics said that it would be naïve to reward Myanmar’s leadership when the intended result is yet to be revealed.
However, Liberal Democrat Malcolm Bruce said that there had been significant progress in the country and they are supporting the UK government’s approach to help reformers of Myanmar’s government get out of poverty and develop a strong economy that will propel them to an efficient, democratic nation.
IDC Minister Alan Duncan said that he was very pleased with the UK Committee’s support for the government’s approach in helping Myanmar. According to Duncan, they have the capability to deliver transformational change for the country.
The Islamic Bank of Britain will be the first to offer Home Purchase Plans complaint with Sharia Law for UK Muslims who wish to purchase a new home while benefitting from the Help to Buy scheme. This allows homebuyers to make use of a 5% deposit for properties worth £600,000.
UK Muslim nationals can now apply for “Islamic Mortgages” as the government extends the Help to Buy’s taxpayer-backed financial aid to Sharia financing. Muslim home buyers could now use Home Purchase Plans or HPPs in conjunction with Help to Buy for a Sharia law compliant mortgage.
HPPs allow the borrower and the bank to own the property in proper proportions, which makes the financing deal compliant to Sharia law. The Islamic law prevents Muslims from using mortgages that deem the borrower as paying interest to the lender.
The scheme will be updated this morning as an Islamic finance conference in London will meet and launch the new scheme as part of the Help To Buy. The move will help put the UK’s intention of becoming a major financing centre for Sharia-compliant financing schemes.
However, the Help to Buy scheme is still under attack from British MPs who question the possible housing bubble the new financing scheme could bring the United Kingdom.
London opened up the world’s first Bitcoin storage service that is insured against hackers and untoward losses Monday. The new storage service Elliptic Vault makes use of “Deep Cold Storage” techniques to ensure the security of the famous digital currency. A few directors of Elliptic could only access copies of transaction data from users who deposit in the vault.
Elliptic is the first vault to provide insurance for the digital currency. According to Tom Robinson, co-founder of Elliptic, “one of the main concerns people have with Bitcoin is that it’s quite difficult to store securely. Offering people insurance seemed an obvious step.
Robinson began Elliptic with two friends since his graduation from Oxford. Elliptic has Lloyds of London as the underwriter for the vault service. Elliptic calculates the Bitcoin to US dollar exchange rate for claim payouts.
Bitcoin is a digital currency that has gained fame throughout the world and the internet. It is a decentralized currency that allows for bypassing traditional bank processes and ensures privacy within exchanges. It became controversial as the currency used for illegal drug transactions on drug-dealing website Silk Road.
Many economic analysts warn investors that bitcoin is an unstable currency as it is highly volatile in the changes to its value. It reached an all-time high of $5000 per coin. During its launch in 2007, it had an initial value of $20.
According to UK consultants KPMG, the finishing of the HS2 High Speed Rail project in 2037 will boost the UK economy by £15 billion yearly. UK MPs said that the rail is highly “essential” for the UK’s future. They iterated that the potential gains “significantly outweigh the cons and risks involved in building the rail.
The HS2 High Speed Rail Project is intended to decongest the UK’s traffic from London, the Midlands to the North of England. The rail will pass from London to Birmingham and then a Y-section would send passengers from Birmingham to Manchester and Leeds. The project is intended to finish by 2032-2033.
Those against the building of the HS2 called the project a “cheerleading whitewash”. It’s bill of £50 billion is being criticised by many as exaggerated and improbable. However, Sir David Higgins, Chairman of the HS2 project, said the costs are true and £14.56 billion of the total amount will be used for contingency.
House of Commons Transport Committee Chairwoman Louise Ellman said that the committee remains confident in the construction of the new high-speed line. The line’s capability to provide long-term demands from passengers and rail freight remains the great reason why the committee looks forward to its completion.
UK Big Four Barclays announced that it will be shutting down its Glasgow Claims Centre as numbers of PPI complaints filed against the bank are slowly reducing in number. However, employee union Unite said that the anger and betrayal felt by the 244 employees about to be laid off in the claims centre is rightful and Barclays should be responsible enough to provide alternatives for the employees.
Recently, Barclays announced its third quarter financial results and it is the only bank that added no further provisions to its PPI redress. Its counterparts, the Lloyds Banking Group, declared an additional £750 million to redress PPI. RBS had also announced an additional £250 million for PPI and HSBC with £90 million.
PPI or payment protection insurance repays consumer loans and mortgages in case you get sick or get unemployed. However, because bank employees intended to increase work volume for incentives, many ineligible consumers were mis sold the insurance policy. There are a large number of claims management companies, such as www.PPIClaimsAdviceLine.com, that have been set up to help customers reclaim their mis-sold PPI premiums.
Barclays said that the Glasgow claims center had already fulfilled its objective and other claims centres in different areas can handle the remaining workload effectively.
The Financial Conduct Authority had also announced that the number of PPI complaints had steadily fallen since the first two quarters of 2013.
Workers said that they were promised good employment length during the time they were first introduced to resolving the mis sold PPI issues of Barclays. They felt betrayed that they were now to be laid off because the objective for the business was already complete.
A 25-year old Ukranian student had launched a three-month one man racist attack against different victims. Pavlo Lapshyn, a PHD technology student in Britain, had only five days in the UK before he stabbed an 82-year old Mohammed Saleem in Birmingham. He had admitted to bombing mosques and engaging in terrorist activities.
According to police interogations, Lapshyn admitted that he was trying to “increase racial conflict” to increase community tension after the murder of different white men around the United Kingdom. Lapshyn had a case of a small explosion at his flat before he left for the United Kingdom.
His attacks fuelled concerns in Britain regarding a far-right supremacist terrorism in Britain. Many believed that he had more bombs planted elsewhere before the police caught him. The bomb he was about to set off was estimated to have killed or injured hundreds of people if not for the police.
His July bombing of a Tipton mosque had been timed to detonate when worshippers were to arrive at the said mosque. However, the delays caused by Ramadan had only the infrastructure damaged, but no one was injured. He had already detonated bombs in Walsall and Wolverhampton mosques.
He had expressed great racial hatred as his motivation and remained emotionless when asked by the local police about his crimes.
Judge Sylvia de Bertonadno sentenced Karl Clay, referred to by the police as the “monster”, in the Leamington Justice Centre, to serve a minimum of 15 years behind bars. Clay, a 39 year old from Wood End, Coventry, raped two children and almost drowned two women.
Aside from his child rape allegations, he also almost burned two children and three more people on fire after dousing them with lighter fuel. There were 13 charges against him, which includes raping children, threatening children and attacking children and adults from 1991. Indecent assault of a child, forcing a child to perform sexual activities, harassment and bodily harm were the other serious charges filed against him.
According to the police, Karl Clay is a “monster” and everyone working to put him to justice were deeply affected by his case. According to Detective Inspector Christopher Hanson, Karl Clay is one of the most vilest criminals in the last 21 years he worked. According to the inspector, aside from the court evidences and testimonies from victims, Clay had more victims in Coventry.
The detective said that Karl Clay never stopped at anything. Once he laid an eyes on a child or a woman he would use such an opportunity to assault them.
British Prime Minister David Cameron proudly defended the UK’s heritage after Russian President Vladimir Putin allegedly said, “Britain is a small island that nobody listens to” to the Russian media during a G-20 briefing.
Cameron defended the UK speaking to British reporters yesterday. He said that the Russians deny making the statement and said that he could not confirm anybody told him such a statement directly. However, he said that Britain might be a small island and challenged anyone to rebuke its great history, values and capabilities.
The Prime Minister went to say Britain’s accomplishments during World War II and its endeavour to stop fascism during such a time. He also said that Britain “is an island” that helped remove slavery, promoted great music, art and literature and had invented many kinds of sports played all over the world.
Putin’s official spokesman Dmitry Peskov denied that the Russian president made the statement.
Prime Minister Cameron said that even in an intolerable situation, one must always maintain their good manners and politeness.
The G-20 summit focused greatly on Syria as more countries vouched for military strikes from a chemical attack that the United States believes to have been done by the Syrian regime itself.
There has always been a risk for the rich and famous that people may be out there, petty thieves and devoted fans alike, who would want to pinch their belongings. Newcastle defender Ryan Taylor may have been the latest victim of such an attack on his private property. He has accused a car valet of stealing his boots and selling them on eBay.
The car valet who was named as Lee Donnelly, aged 35, was cautioned by police after a holdall of cherished memorabilia went missing from Taylor’s garage. The 35-year-old Mr Donnelly, who runs his own valet business, has worked for a host of stars and made national news earlier this year when he claimed Demba Ba owed him £40 for work he had done. Included in the goods that he stole were the boots Taylor wore when he scored the winner during Newcastle’s 1-0 derby win over Sunderland in 2011 and the boots he wore when he scored for Newcastle in a 2009 Sir Bobby Robson tribute match against Ipswich. He has now been reunited with the derby-day boots
The 28-year-old, who is taking a break due to a knee injury, told a reporter: ‘He was quick to point the finger at Demba but he was happy to steal from me.’ Taylor, who contacted police straight away, also said: “I called Lee after he was cautioned and he answered straight away, “Hello Ryan”. It was completely disrespectful. I just said, “Don’t you Hello Ryan me”. I asked him, “Why me?” “He said he was sorry and he had sold four pairs of boots for £100. It’s ridiculous because he’s got no idea what they meant to me.”
“I couldn’t put a value on them because they had sentimental value. They were things I wanted to keep and cherish and for him to just flog them like that. He’s been so stupid. I asked him to come around to my house to apologise but he said no because I would beat him up. Why would I get in trouble with the police over him? It’s completely and utterly out of order. I never want to see him again.”
Northumbria Police commented: “We got a report at 7.15pm on Wednesday, August 7, to a report of a theft of a number of items from an address in Ponteland. A 35-year-old man was arrested and accepted a simple caution.”