10. Weekly Newsletter

UK trade decline

Since records began in 1997, the last 5-year period has seen the lowest volume of imports and exports. The volume of both exports and imports was 7.4% lower in 2023 than in 2018, with economists highlighting that Brexit has reduced bilateral flows. This trend is also unlike that of most advanced countries, which have not experienced the same drop-off. Many other EU countries experienced a post-Covid boom, whereas the UK faced barriers to having the same effect on them. This is exemplified by how, in 2023, UK trade intensity was 1.7% below its 2019 level, whereas the rest of G7 had an average increase of 1.9%.



Over the last seven days, the UK’s front page news cycle has covered many topics. Lloyds backs funds for local non-profit lenders, Jeremy Hunt lines up personal tax cuts for budget, and England’s regional divide is found to be widening. Some of the newspaper headlines from this week were:


ITV sells US streaming service to BBC

BBC Studios, the commercial arm of Britain’s national broadcaster, is keen on investing in new productions to continue evolving. The BBC has bought ITV’s 50% stake in Britbox International, a subscription streaming service, for £235 million. The deal came as a result of both the BBC’s aggressive stance and ITV facing pressure on its balance sheet due to a drop in advertising revenues. The head of BBC Studios stated this was an “important acquisition”. In the last year, the BBC generated £2.1 billion, and the head of BBC Studios hopes this deal will help reach the target of £3.2 billion by 2027.

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17. The Policy Watch

17. Weekly Newsletter

16. The Policy Watch

16. Weekly Newsletter