Articles by Andrea Ninomiya on the GC Blog and GC analysis
The critical CO2 shortage experienced by the UK last summer was caused by a combination of increased demand – with England’s progress at the World Cup and an unprecedented heat wave in part to blame – and outages at key production facilities. But characterisation of the shortage as “a perfect storm” risks ignoring a structural fragility in the UK’s CO2 supply chain that has been exposed by events. Global Counsel explores the systemic reasons for this shortage and outlines proposals for how to avoid it in future, in its latest report “Falling flat: lessons from the 2018 UK CO2 shortage” commissioned by Food and Drink Federation.
During Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s visit to the UK yesterday, he and Theresa May were asked about the fate of Hitachi’s Horizon nuclear plant at Wylfa in Wales. Abe’s response, that they did not discuss it, did nothing to reduce anxiety about the multi-billion-pound project. Overnight, Japan’s Nikkei newspaper reported that Hitachi has decided to freeze the project. In response, Hitachi’s share price rose by 6%. Despite Hitachi’s denials, the project appears to be on the brink of collapsing, with neither the Japanese nor the British able to find a combination of investors and government support to finance the costs.
A distinctive feature of President Juncker’s “political” European Commission was a single set of collective top-down priorities, rather than a stitching together of the agendas of individual commissioners. In 2014, this meant a focus on economic reforms to restore growth lost during the 2008 financial crisis: a digital single market, a capital markets union and an investment plan for Europe. Events inevitably challenged this strategy — an unprecedented refugee crisis, Brexit, the emergence of new security threats — but it proved more resilient than many expected at the outset of the “last chance” Commission.
Last week, UK prime minister, Theresa May, met with the CEO of Hitachi, Hiroaki Nakanishi, to discuss how to finance the new Horizon nuclear plant at Wylfa in Anglesey. The meeting went under the radar at the time, but what has become clear is that Hitachi and Japan are confronting the UK with a political and policy dilemma.