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Daily briefing: EU citizens’ rights, Republican healthcare bill, record-breaking sniper

Daily briefing: EU citizens’ rights, Republican healthcare bill, record-breaking sniper

Daily briefing: EU citizens’ rights, Republican healthcare bill, record-breaking sniper
June 23
06:30 2017


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Theresa May has outlined plans to guarantee the rights of 3m EU citizens living in Britain after Brexit. The UK prime minister told fellow European leaders at a summit in Brussels that EU citizens living lawfully in Britain at the point it leaves the bloc in March 2019 would not be asked to leave. German Chancellor Angela Merkel described the offer as a “good start”. Here’s more on the offer and its potential pitfalls. Mrs May’s announcement comes as UK farms report a shortfall in seasonal pickers, which they blame on Brexit as overseas workers now view the country as xenophobic.

One year on from the Brexit vote Peter Mandelson, a former UK cabinet minister, and John Redwood, Conservative MP for Wokingham, discuss the shape of an EU-UK deal. (FT, Reuters, Guardian)

Test your knowledge of this week’s news with the FirstFT quiz

In the news

Large Chinese companies targeted by regulator
China’s bank regulator ordered domestic lenders to check the “systemic risk” presented by “some large enterprises” involved in overseas buying sprees, sending stock prices of some of the country’s most acquisitive private-sector companies sharply lower. Shares in listed companies controlled by property-to-entertainment company Dalian Wanda, consumer group Fosun International and conglomerate HNA all fell on Thursday as news of the order spread rapidly through the markets. Here’s James Kynge on how Beijing is trying to head off a “Lehman Brothers moment”. (FT)

Republican healthcare bill released

The GOP Senate bill would gut the Medicaid healthcare programme that benefits the poor and provide a massive tax cut for the wealthy, while allowing states to opt out of requiring insurers to provide maternity care, emergency services and mental health treatment. Here’s a breakdown of how the Senate bill would dismantle Obamacare. Senate Democrats plan to launch tactics to slow work on the bill — which is deeply unpopular — while some Republicans have expressed measured reservations, but GOP leadership could bring it to a vote as soon as next week. Finally, here’s a useful explainer of the bill. (FT, Slate, NYT, USA Today, Vox)

Hacking of US election far more extensive than reported
Investigators found evidence that hackers altered voter roles and stole private voter data as part of probes into Russian attempts to influence the 2016 election in favour of Donald Trump. Congressional investigators are probing whether any of the stolen information made its way to the Trump campaign, which is under investigation for its ties to Russia. Mr Trump continues to question whether Russia meddled in the election, amid reports that he suggested two of the top US intelligence officials say publicly that there was no collusion between his campaign and the Russians. Meanwhile, Trump has said he did not make secret recordings of his meetings with then FBI director James Comey, despite earlier insinuating there were “tapes” of their conversation. (Time, Politico, CNN, FT)

Refugees in Germany to be jobless for years
Up to three-quarters of Germany’s refugees will still be unemployed in five years’ time, according to Aydan Özoğuz, the country’s commissioner for immigration, refugees and integration. The stark admission of the challenges Germany faces in integrating its huge migrant population comes as Angela Merkel seeks a fourth term as chancellor in elections in September. (FT)

Northern Ireland talks deadline in doubt
Time is “fast running out” on discussions to restore power sharing at Stormont, Sinn Féin has said. Sinn Féin pulled out of government in January prompting an election in March followed by a series of missed deadlines to restore devolution. Talks were put on hold for Britain’s general election in May but have been sidelined as Theresa May has courted the Democratic Union party, Northern Ireland’s largest union part, to support her minority government. (BBC, Reuters)

Warning over ‘risky and expensive’ Hinkley Point
UK electricity consumers face paying state-owned French and Chinese companies £30bn above market prices for a “risky and expensive” deal to build the Hinkley Point nuclear power station. The National Audit Office said the cost of the project could have been reduced by half if structured in a different way, adding that the deal was “not value for money”. (FT, BBC)

Test your knowledge of this week’s news with the FirstFT quizDiageo paid $1bn for a tequila brand part-owned by which Hollywood star?

The day ahead

Eurozone PMIs
The latest readings of business confidence among the eurozone’s purchasing managers are set to show more evidence of economic recovery. In recent months, the eurozone PMI has reached its highest since before the region’s sovereign debt crisis. On Thursday, fresh data showed eurozone consumer confidence at a 16-year high. (FT)

What we’re reading

The new world disorder
Ed Luce on how America’s friends and enemies have adjusted to the age of Trump — with US allies scrambling to figure out what to do next and China hoping to gain advantage from a world in flux. (FT)

Online gamblers’ shadow banking system revealed
A network of seven fake online stores offering household goods has been used as a front for internet gambling payments, part of an international system to conceal payments for the $40bn industry, which is illegal in many countries. (Reuters)

Persuading the holiday refuseniks
Insecurity, anxiety, missed sales targets: there are many reasons why people fail to take their holiday entitlement. But time off is important for mental and physical health and for companies. Emma Jacobs looks at ways of getting reluctant employees to take a break. (FT)

Canadian sniper makes record kill shot
A sniper with Canada’s elite special forces has shot and killed an Isis fighter in Iraq from a distance of 2.1 miles, shattering the world record for the longest confirmed kill shot previously held by a British sniper. The shot took 10 seconds to reach its target and the sniper would have had to consider distance, wind and the curvature of the earth when taking aim. (Globe and Mail)

A tale of two nations
What a difference a year makes. When Britain voted to leave the EU, it was a vibrant country with an optimistic outlook, while across the channel, France seemed to be drifting and young Parisians were leaving for London in record numbers, writes the FT’s Philip Stephens. Now the mood has changed; the UK has lost its compass and France has a new sense of purpose. (FT)

Playing games in Tallinn
In a five-star hotel in the Estonian capital, a military exercise is taking place that could be crucial to the defence of Europe and the US: welcome to Locked Shields, the world’s “most advanced international technical live-fire cyber defence exercise”. (Al Jazeera)

Video of the day

Welcoming our robot overlords
Robin Kwong reports on how workers and unions in the heart of US manufacturing have come to terms with robots taking over tasks humans once did. (FT)



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