(Bloomberg) -- Hello, from London, where the Elgin Marbles will be staying in the British Museum for awhile longer.
The diplomatic dispute with Greece took a few unusual turns this week, starting with Rishi Sunak’s last-minute cancellation of a meeting with Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis in London over the Greek leader’s public comments calling for the return of the sculptures that once adorned the Parthenon. Mitsotakis later said he wants to preserve good relations with the UK.
“I certainly want to leave this unfortunate incident behind me, but it always takes two to tango,” Mitsotakis told Bloomberg Television’s Francine Lacqua on Friday. On the same day, King Charles III—whose father was born in Greece—appeared at COP28 in a blue-and-white tie adorned with Greek flags.
Sunak was also at the climate summit in Dubai, pledging to spend £1.6 billion as he tries to show the UK remains committed to the cause even after he watered down his government’s green agenda and promised to boost oil and gas exploration.
He returns to a chilly UK and a host of familiar problems, highlighted by pressure to produce a new migration bill before Parliament’s holiday recess. Add the Greek diplomatic row and Fitch Ratings maintaining its “negative” credit outlook and it looks like a gloomy December for Sunak, Alex Wickham and Kitty Donaldson report.
The month started with a freeze that’s snarling travel around the UK and Europe, as well as train drivers’ strikes in England. With the Christmas party season also kicking off, pubs and restaurants are hoping customers will brush off the latest round of industrial action.
Whether you’re turning to a hot bath or a cup of tea to keep warm today, spare a thought for Thames Water. Its parent company may run out of money by April if shareholders don’t inject more equity into the debt-laden utility, auditors warned.
PricewaterhouseCoopers said there’s “material uncertainty” about whether the group can continue as a going concern.
Finally, Britain’s young adults moved back into London last year in the biggest numbers since before the pandemic, marking a sharp contrast to an exodus by older people, Eamon Akil Farhat reports.
The capital drew in more people aged 24-29 than departed for other parts of the country in the year through June 2022, according to data on internal migration released Friday by the Office for National Statistics. However, about 25,000 people net aged 30-34 departed the city.
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