We’ve summarised the top stories of the last week into an easily digestible briefing, so that you can stay up to date on what’s happening around the world. You can subscribe to receive the briefing in your inbox each week.

UK Business & Economics

  1. The UK has added E-bikes, frozen berries, and security cameras to its basket of over 700 goods used to measure inflation. In total, 26 new items were added and 16 were removed. 
  2. A shortage of fresh fruit and vegetables in recent weeks has caused the sale of tomatoes and peppers to drop by 17%. Conversely, cucumber sales were up by 32%. The overall quantity of fresh produce decreased, but due to inflation the total value increased by 11%. 
  3. The Financial Times has reported that ministers are planning to exclude small UK business from new anti-fraud legislation by narrowing the scope of a criminal offence targeting companies. 

International Business & Economics

  1. American regulators closed Silicon Valley Bank amid a run on the tech-focused lender, with the FDIC taking control of SVB’s $175 billion-worth of deposits amid the largest bank failure since 2008.
  2. Australia’s central bank has increased its interest rates to 3.6%, making this the tenth consecutive rise. 
  3. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has announced that it will be replacing the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission to oversee legislation in the financial sector. 
  4. South Africa’s GDP shrank by 1.3% in the last quarter of 2022. This follows from a series of national blackouts which were estimated to have cost the economy of to $50 million a day.
  5. American employers added 311,000 jobs in February, beating forecasts, although the unemployment rate rose to 3.6%

UK Politics

  1. Gary Lineker is set to return to the BBC after he was temporarily removed from airtime due to comments made which compared the government’s new illegal immigration policy to 1930s Germany. 
  2. Rishi Sunak spoke to the BBC he was increasing funding for the armed forces because “the world has become more volatile” and the “threats to our security have increased”, with defense spending set to increase by nearly £5 billion over the next two years.
  3. The UK, USA, and Australia have revealed plans to supply Canberra with nuclear powered submarines. The current plan involves Britain building eight submarines, which could continue to expand the UK’s submarine force to up to 19 in the future.

International Politics

  1. XI Jinping vowed to bolster China’s security and oppose foreign “interference” in Taiwan in a speech that closed the Communist Party’s annual parliamentary meeting.
  2. Iran and Saudi Arabia will resume bilateral ties and reopen embassies within two months, according to state media from both countries. The two countries officially cut diplomatic ties in 2016.
  3. South Korea and the US launched their biggest joint military operation in five years, which includes field training drills and computer simulations.
  4. Recep Erdogan, Turkey’s president, confirmed that parliamentary and presidential elections will take place on May 14th amid declining support for the incumbent government.
  5. Britain will give France £480 million over the next three years to tackle the small-boat crisis, with the funds being used to strengthen patrols and build a new migrant-detention center in northern France.

Written by Philip Weaver and Rob Webb