The Pagoda Perspective 16.01.2017



  • Theresa May is expected to announce on Tuesday that the UK is prepared to leave the single market, the customs union and European Court of Justice has said.
    The Chancellor, Phillip Hammond, has suggested the UK could become a corporate tax haven if the EU fails to provide it with an agreement on market access after Brexit.
    The Exiting the European Union Committee has said the Prime Minister should “declare her position” by the middle of February to allow sufficient time for scrutiny. In its first report, it said MPs must get a vote on the final deal and backed having an interim deal if needed.


  • Nicola Sturgeon has ruled out calling an independence referendum in 2017 despite growing tensions with the UK Government over its Brexit strategy. Opposing parties have urged the First Minister to take another referendum off the table altogether.
    At the same time, the Scottish Independence Convention has held a conference in Glasgow aimed at preparing the country for another vote on independence.


  • Sterling has fallen to its lowest level for more than three months ahead of Theresa May’s Brexit speech on Tuesday. Analysts said traders were reacting to reports that May would use the speech on Tuesday to signal a so-called “hard Brexit”.
  • The Bank of England is set to upgrade its forecasts for the UK economy after admitting that some of the risks posed by the Brexit vote last June have now receded.


  • The number of people working in tourism in the Scottish Borders increased by 11% in one year, according to VisitScotland. The statistics show that tourism supports 4,000 jobs in the Borders, 10 per cent of total jobs in the area.


  • The Secretary of State is set to call NI Assembly elections after Sinn Féin did not nominate a Deputy First Minister, to replace Martin McGuinness. He quit when DUP leader Arlene Foster refused to stand aside as First Minister while the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) scandal was investigated. Because they hold a joint office, the resignation automatically put the DUP leader out of her job


  • The NHS has disputed claims from the Red Cross that there is a “humanitarian crisis” in hospitals in England.
    Meanwhile, Peter Bennie, Chair of BMA Scotland has suggested Scotland’s NHS is heading towards a breakdown due to lack of funding by the SNP Government.


  • The European Parliament will elect a new president this week (17 January).

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