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Nissan this week officially launched production at its Sunderland plant of an updated version of its Leaf model, having decided to shift some production out of Japan to reduce costs.
Output has already started in Tennessee for the American market and as there, a battery plant has been built next door to the Sunderland assembly plant to produce the batteries going into the car. Leaf production for other markets continues at Oppama in Japan but the firm is also actively looking at production in China under a local brand.
This all links to what Renault-Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn terms "localisation", i.e. shifting production nearer to the end market (on my earlier blogs on re-localisation, see here). This is especially important given exchange rate shifts, as Ghosn highlighted this week.
Any temptation to celebrate the EU/IMF bailout of Cyprus and that the dream of a 'United States of Europe' continues will have been tempered by the fact that this deal is not one that will be good for anyone in particular; least of all Cypriots who can look forward to rising unemployment - already running at 15% - resulting from continued business closures and economic uncertainty.
It looks pretty grim.
The fact that banks have not been able to re-open, that one of the two major banks, Laiki, will be shut down, capital controls introduced, limits on cash withdrawals and bans on cashing cheques and the use of some debit and credit adds to a belief that the crisis is far from over.
"I am from the Government and I am here to help you"
The question which might be asked about the economic crisis affecting Cyprus is why is there such a fuss?
After all, with a population of 850,000 and an economy which is worth just 0.2% of the total GDP for the EU of €12 trillion, it might seem insignificant.
As one eminent economics commentator has noted, China achieves a comparable rate of growth to Cyprus' rate in just a week.
The original dream of a 'United States of Europe' would have suggested that the amount of money to sort Cyprus' problems would be freely available.
The amount that Cyprus is required to raise, €5.8 billion, in order to qualify for the €10 billion bailout so as not to become bankrupt, seems small when compared to what has been already been given to other European countries in recent years.
So what makes Cyprus different?
In today's budget Chancellor George Osborne will apparently announce an additional £2.5 billion spending on infrastructure projects.
However, the money that be used will have to come from other Whitehall departments which will be required to reduce their budgets by 2% over the next two years only health, education and Revenue and Customs being exceptions.
However, as equity investor Jon Moulton of Better Capital stated on last night's Newsnight £2.5 billion additional spending over two years represents just three days borrowing and is not enough to make any significant difference.
The belief that spending on construction infrastructure projects will provide some alleviation from the continuing economic gloom is gaining currency across the political spectrum.
For example, in an article in Sunday's Observer shadow chancellor Ed Balls and Labour MP Jack Dromey criticise what they see as the current government's inability to stimulate economic recovery through the housebuilding sector:
"The coalition government's commitment to talking about getting Britain building can hardly be denied but its success in delivery has been nothing short of disastrous."
Most particularly, Balls and Dromey cite the fact that despite three major initiatives announced by the current government, house completions are at their lowest level in peacetime since the 1920s.
Blogged by David Bailey and Nigel Berkeley
Jaguar Land Rover's Chief Executive Rath Speth recently said that it was wrong to subsidise "poor electric vehicles" and nationwide charging stations, adding that "at this time I am not a very big friend of electric vehicles."
He went on to add that "batteries are too expensive ...the customer must be very rich, and can only use (electric cars) in mega-cities. Should we do it only for the rich?" He argued that it would be better to wait until the technology improves and there is a greater benefit to the environment, and to let the market decide: "the customer is clever enough to decide what he wants or doesn't want... even with lots of subsidy the demand is not very high."
Is he correct? Well, yes and no. Actually it's right that the government tries to encourage the take-up of low carbon vehicles so as to help the market take off, as new markets often do need some state support to get moving. But attempts so far have indeed failed to have any significant real impact.
"They are all corrupt. Totally corrupt. Every last one of them."
It's no secret that, since the arrival of the financial crisis, the legal sector has been facing some extremely challenging market conditions.
Monday's announcement by David Cameron that apprenticeships should become the norm for school leavers is welcome news.
On a visit to a training academy in Buckinghamshire to launch National Apprenticeship Week the Prime Minister acknowledged the fact that as well as being good for individuals who undertake apprenticeships - usually though not exclusively young people who have just left school - they are good for business.
As part of an effort to 'rebalance the economy', i.e. create a shift away from our dependence on financial services, apprenticeships in all sectors of industry though most especially engineering, will assist in the quest to reduce the deficit caused by the financial crisis of five years ago.
According to the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) the number of apprenticeships could almost double by 2022 from the current total of 260,000 to almost half a million.
Significantly according to the CEBR the impact of an apprentice who has completed can increase business productivity, in the case of engineering to over £400 per week, and improve profits.
So in supporting apprenticeships David Cameron will have been well aware of the prediction by CEBR that by 2022 they could be contributing £3.4 billion per year to the economy.
Whilst it is easy to pronounce that we need to have more apprenticeships there is a need to better appreciate what this really means in 21st century Britain and, more particularly, what they should consist of?
The decision which the City Council is now prepared to make to dismiss from the city centre some of its oldest business inhabitants, by moving the Wholesale Markets out of their current site to somewhere outside the city centre, is a momentous, colossal mistake.
The actual report has yet to be published. I have not been made privy to it. The press have been briefed on the basics, however. I can only now comment on those.
The knock-on effects on the retail markets will be catastrophic, which is why the two have been linked, and should be linked, in the debate. The vitality of these markets, wholesale and retail, are part of the business and community lifeblood of this city, a beating heart; and they are in deepest danger.
Momentous, because it indicates to me a fundamental disconnection in policy between the council's leadership (of any recent political colour) and where this city needs to develop. We are going backwards to a world which has already inflicted great damage to this city.