UK government’s Spring Budget was presented by finance minister Jeremy Hunt on Wednesday. Hunt said in a lengthy speech that the independent Office for Budget Responsibility had revised its prediction that the UK economy will not experience a technical recession in 2023. Moreover, a new infliction point has reached in war on Tuesday. A US drone plummeted into the Black Sea reportedly after colliding with Russian fighter planes. The US accused Moscow of acting recklessly. Russian planes are said to have dropped fuel into the drone’s route before the crash, which the US claims was in international airspace.
Amoung other news, Tim Mayopoulos, the newly appointed Chief Executive Officer of SVB, declared that the Silicon Valley Bank is back open for business, opening new accounts and making new loans. When the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank threatened to spark a wider financial crisis, U.S. regulators took immediate action on Sunday to bolster trust in the banking system.
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Jeremy Hunt unveiled the budget as Britain said cost-of-living support for this year and next will total £94 billion ($114 billion). As per the government, the forecast is that the economy would avoid recession this year as inflation slows sharply.
The downing of a US intelligence drone in the Black Sea has once again created a tiff between the US and Russia, with both countries giving different accounts of the incident. The United States said Tuesday that one of its MQ-9 “Reaper” intelligence and surveillance drones was struck by a Russian Su-27 fighter. “Several times before the collision, the Su-27s dumped fuel on, and flew in front of the MQ-9 in a reckless, environmentally unsound and unprofessional manner,” James B. Hecker, commander of U.S. Air Forces Europe and Air Forces Africa, said.
Tim Mayopoulos, the newly appointed Chief Executive Officer of SVB, declared that the Silicon Valley Bank is back open for business, opening new accounts and making new loans. Earlier, Mayopoulos served as the CEO of Fannie Mae and is credited to have brought it back to profitability after the 2008 financial crisis.
Popular video-sharing platform TikTok is reportedly considering separation from parent company ByteDance. As per Bloomberg, the reason behind this probable split stems from concerns voiced by the United States over the app and the alleged national security risks it poses.
Former Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan accused the “establishment” of planning his arrest, claiming that it’s all part of a ‘London plan’, in a veiled attack against his political foe Nawaz Sharif who has been stationed in London since November 2019. The comments came as tensions skyrocketed in Lahore in the early hours of Wednesday despite Khan’s claim that he will appear before the Lahore High Court on March 18.
Political advisers to the Chinese government have made over 20 recommendations to increase the birth rates in the country at the annual meeting of China’s People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) this month. This move seems to be China’s act of desperation to address its dwindling population.
India, as the current chair of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), has extended invitations to Pakistan and China to attend several ministerial meetings of the grouping as per standard protocol. These include the SCO Defence Ministers meeting scheduled for 27th April in Delhi, as well as the National Security Advisors meeting set for March 29. Invite has been dished out for home ministers meet, even as New Delhi is in the process of extending the invite for other key meetings.
Sri Lanka was in the grips of mass protests Wednesday as trade unions protested against the doubling of taxes to qualify for a crucial International Monetary Fund (IMF) bailout. The day-long strike is being held by Sri Lankan health, railway, port and other state workers. There has been a sharp increase in income taxes and electricity charges in the island nation as it awaits approval of an International Monetary Fund package to aid its bankrupt economy.
Israeli army veterans are participating in a large demonstration at Ben-Gurion Airport to prevent prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu from leaving for Germany to a state-visit scheduled on Thursday.
In its second season, the writers of Ted Lasso proved that they were aware of criticisms of the first season centring around the show being just too sunny and wholesome. That felt nitpicking to me, as though a show being too nice were a bad thing, particularly in a world ravaged by the pandemic. However, the second time around, the Jason Sudeikis-led show was not only edgier, but it also turned out that seeds of the darker elements had been planted in the first season itself. The people behind the show were smart, after all. Now, the show’s third season is here. Is it any good?