BP to sell Secco stake to partner for £1.3bn

BP has quit its largest Chinese petrochemicals joint venture, selling its 50 per cent stake to its partner, Sinopec, for $1.68 billion (£1.3 billion). The oil giant said the sale of its stake in the Shanghai Secco Petrochemical Company formed part of its strategy to focus its petrochemicals business on areas of strength. BP sold the vast majority of its olefins business to Ineos in 2005 and the Secco joint venture was its last remaining olefin asset. Last year Secco contributed $301 million in net profits to BP. Rita Griffin, chief operating officer of BP global petrochemicals, said: “This decision aligns our…

April 27, 2017 23:00 UTC

China tells Kim to halt bomb tests

Kim Jong-un has been threatened with sanctions if he does not call an end to his regime’s provocative nuclear programme wong maye-e/APChina has warned North Korea not to conduct another nuclear test, the US revealed yesterday as efforts to impose tougher sanctions on Pyongyang gathered pace. Rex Tillerson, the secretary of state, said China had threatened to impose sanctions of its own on the regime of Kim Jong-un unless it halted its provocative nuclear programme. Mr Tillerson, speaking to Fox News, said US intelligence indicated that Mr Kim was “not crazy”, and could be persuaded to act rationally. Mr Tillerson, Boris Johnson and fellow ministers from the 15-member security council will gather in New York today in an American-led effort to increase the pressure on the regime. An official in the Trump administration promised a “burst” of economic and diplomatic pressure to make North Korea change…

April 27, 2017 23:00 UTC

Armed terror suspect arrested in Westminster

The suspected terrorist is led away by police. Armed counterterror police stopped the 27-year-old man as he walked from Parliament Square towards Downing Street with a rucksack containing the knives shortly after 2.20pm. A tip-off, understood to be from his family, had prompted surveillance by police and MI5, it is understood. The suspect had been “allowed to run” in an effort to gather as much evidence as possible on what is believed to be an Islamic State-inspired “lone wolf” plot, sources suggested last night. Whitehall went into lockdown after four officers held the suspect, who is understood to have been tracked from southeast London.

April 27, 2017 23:00 UTC

May must seize chance to repeal Human Rights Act

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April 27, 2017 22:52 UTC

The skin and hair rules for men

The skin rulesMen can be radiant tooSarah Chapman, who does facials for David Beckham (and his missus), says: “By the time my men reach their forties, the main concerns are more effective anti-ageing and combating dullness. Entry-level, dependable, non-expensive and one of the bestselling men’s products with good reason is Clinique’s Moisturising Lotion (£25, clinique.co.uk). Kiehl’s men’s range — beloved of Daniel Craig — has a reliable line-up of men’s products. Try Kiehl’s Facial Fuel (£21.50, kiehls.co.uk). It’s a rich, lifting and firming product that tightens skin and minimises…

April 27, 2017 22:52 UTC



Uber drivers get sick cover for £2 a week

Drivers will also be covered for jury service and if an accident takes place during a journey Getty ImagesUber drivers are to receive sickness cover for the first time in exchange for a weekly fee of £2. Employees in 25 British towns and cities who have undertaken more than 500 trips will be eligible for payments of up to £2,000 if they are unable to drive through sickness or injury for a minimum of two weeks. They will also be covered for £2,000 if they are called for jury service and £300 per week if an accident takes place during a journey. The San Francisco-based company said that it was subsidising the weekly premium for the company’s estimated 40,000 drivers in the UK. The move comes before the government’s Taylor review of working practices which is expected to recommend that self-employed workers in…

April 27, 2017 22:52 UTC

Don’t allow UK to leave, demands Bruton

Anti-Brexit campaigners in Dublin this week. John Bruton said that the people of Britain were misled by Boris Johnson CLODAGH KILCOYNE/REUTERSJohn Bruton has urged Ireland to do everything it can to make sure there is no Brexit. Theresa May’s plan for leaving the EU would do incalculable damage to Ireland “politically, emotionally and economically”, according to the former taoiseach and EU ambassador to the US. “We cannot simply wait for this to happen,” he said yesterday.“While seeking to mitigate the effects of Mrs May’s chosen hard Brexit, we must also do everything we can to ensure that, at the end of the day, there is no Brexit.”Mr Bruton accused Boris Johnson, the British foreign secretary, of having “criminally misled” the UK over the consequences of leaving the EU, before tempering his remarks. “Boris Johnson attempted to simplify the Brexit issue by saying we can…

April 27, 2017 22:52 UTC

Showing anti-vaccine film ‘is a health risk’

The former doctor Andrew Wakefield was struck off for fraudulent research linking vaccines to autism Shaun Curry/AFP/Getty ImagesScientists have accused an arts venue in west London of endangering public health after it agreed to screen a vaccine conspiracy film by the disgraced former doctor Andrew Wakefield. The Tabernacle, a grade II listed venue in Notting Hill, last night showed Vaxxed, a film that claims the US government covered up a connection between the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine and autism. The film is directed by Mr Wakefield, whose fraudulent research linking vaccines to autism led to a fall in vaccination uptake in Britain in the early 2000s. Scientists said they were concerned that his views were in the ascendancy again, in part thanks to support from the Trump administration. Edzard Ernst, emeritus professor of complementary medicine at Exeter University, said that the…

April 27, 2017 22:52 UTC

Diesel particles, air quality and public health

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April 27, 2017 22:52 UTC

More investors accept RBS offer in rights issue dispute

Fred Goodwin, the former RBS chief executive, will be required to give evidence about the bank’s near collapse, after which it was bailed out with £45.5 billion of taxpayers’ money Danny Lawson/PARoyal Bank of Scotland has knocked out another group of shareholders from the legal dispute over its 2008 rights issue, raising the prospect that it may settle the case out of court. RBS, which is set to unveil a small quarterly profit today, said that it had reached an agreement with nearly 90 per cent of the original claims by value after it sweetened its compensation offer a few weeks ago. However, a faction remain who yesterday reiterated that they would see the bank in court. Fred Goodwin, the former RBS chief executive, will be required to give evidence about the bank’s near collapse, after which it was bailed out with £45.5 billion of taxpayers’ money. The trial is due to begin on May 22.…

April 27, 2017 22:52 UTC

Party’s over as miners feel the force of fundamentals

Between cyclones, strikes and heavy-handed market intervention by the Chinese Communist Party, the mining industry has had its fair share of distractions. Yesterday came a reminder of the humdrum brute force of what analysts euphemistically call “the fundamentals”. The prices of the raw materials needed for China’s industrialisation have been propped up by a succession of exceptional factors. Copper production was squeezed by disputes at the two biggest producers, Escondida in Chile and Grasberg in Indonesia. But yesterday the noise died down enough for commodity markets — and the companies that rely on them — to show…

April 27, 2017 22:52 UTC

It’s growth that voters want, not stability

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April 27, 2017 22:52 UTC

Deutrom’s five-year quest to win Test-status

During an Irish citizenship ceremony in Dublin last Friday, Bryan McMahon, the presiding officer, urged the Indians, Pakistanis and Sri Lankans among the 3,000 people who had just been sworn in “to bring your bats and your wickets as we have a great, emerging, cricket team”. Five days later, a vote from the International Cricket Council (ICC) has taken Ireland one step closer to being a fully fledged Test nation. Under the terms of the new ICC constitution, which was agreed on Wednesday and will be formally ratified in June, associate members can obtain full membership if they meet certain criteria in playing standards and good governance. Ireland and Afghanistan have already met those qualifying conditions, so from June both teams will be granted Test…

April 27, 2017 22:52 UTC

Mediclinic boosted by price cut for patients

Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed ­al-Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu ­Dhabi, has waived a 20 per cent co-payment for treatment at private ­facilities for patients with so-called Thiqa medical insurance Mikhail Metzel/Getty ImagesA FTSE 100-listed private hospitals group was given a shot in the arm yesterday after Abu Dhabi caught the market by surprise and scrapped a costly charge for patients. Shares in Mediclinic rallied almost 18 per cent after local reports that Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, had waived a 20 per cent co-payment for treatment at private facilities for patients with so-called Thiqa medical insurance. The payment, introduced last July, left Mediclinic nursing a “significant impact” on patient numbers. Although the effect stabilised, Mediclinic, which operates six hospitals and 34 clinics in the UAE, had been lobbying against the measure. The company said yesterday that it was awaiting “precise details of the changes from the health authority of Abu Dhabi”.

April 27, 2017 22:52 UTC

Can we sue a seller’s solicitors?

Q Two years ago we bought a house with a garden from the estate of a man who had recently died. The seller’s solicitors were aware of a long-running dispute with the neighbours about the garden, but failed to mention it in their property information form. Can we sue the seller for getting the form wrong? A home report comprising a survey, energy report and a property questionnaire would have been required before the house was marketed, but is not part of the sale contract. An offer to buy a residential property is normally made using the Scottish Standard Offer and will be followed by a qualified acceptance.

April 27, 2017 22:52 UTC




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