Skip to main content

tv   Dateline London  BBC News  January 2, 2022 11:30am-12:01pm GMT

11:30 am
france will cut the coronavirus self—isolation period from ten to seven days in a bid to ease staff pressures. dozens of fire crews have been tackling a blaze at the houses of parliament in the south african city of cape town. a us judge throws out prince andrew's attempt to halt proceedings in a civil lawsuit against him. i'll be back at the top of the hour with the — i'll be back at the top of the hour with the latest headlines. now on bbc news, it's time for dateline london, with shaun ley. hello, and welcome to the second of our seasonal editions of dateline london.
11:31 am
last weekend, we talked about the past. traditionally this is the time when fortunes are told and predictions made. our three guests need no crystal ball to rub. they bring decades of judgment and journalism to the task of foretelling 2022. bronwyn was foreign editor of the times newspaper and now leads the institute for government, making government better it hopes. marc is an economics journalist, and in studio with me is lyse doucet, bbc�*s chief international correspondent. welcome back. thank you for coming again to talk about 2022. now let's begin with the economy and the global economy. unlike 2020 and 2021,
11:32 am
we have a year now where it looks like everybody is going to be travelling and working again pretty much, the global supply system isjuddering, but it's functional. what are the challenges you think that lie ahead in the year to come? the biggest challenge will be the rise of inflation and also the higher interest rate, which go together, which the central banks will decide they might be settled. because the outlook is quite murky on the supply side. of course you have a lot of bottlenecks, man powere, wage inflation, raw materials, construction, the ports, all the problems. and then you have high prices of energy, gas and electricity, due to geopolitical tension, due to problems of delivery which might be worse. and then on top of that, you have, of course, problems with the public finances because if you have higher inflation and higher interest rates, the service of your debt which is much bigger now because of covid
11:33 am
and the help to the economy will be much higher. and then on the demand side, we don't know what consumers will do. will they continue to spend like they did because they use savings accumulated during lockdown, or will they be more wary because of inflation and interest rates? and also the other side is the problem of the crisis of the property, the real estate. because in the us and in the uk in particular, growth depends on consumption and real estate. all this makes it really difficult to predict, but whatever happens, unfortunately, there will be a bumpy ride. bronwyn, 2022, unlike the yearjust going, could be seen as a sort of a year in which perhaps it's not so much a matter of life and death,
11:34 am
covid, but a matter of diminishing resources because it is still taking up so much of our economic activity and obviously diverting it or displacing it, but also it's going to continue to be presumably a significant health challenge. i think that's right. squeezing out a lot of things, the sheer cost of dealing with covid. i think we've seen in the uk, it's squeezing out the social care budget, that's the care for the elderly, and also the prime minister came in vowing to do something this and yet the pot of money that he put aside for this is almost entirely going to be squeezed up by the health service and indeed by coronavirus, much of it, squeezing out education as well and squeezing out lots of things. so i think we are seeing that pain on national finances as we've just been discussing, but i wonder if there could be just a bit more hope over inflation. we absolutely have seen those pressures of the moment, but it's possible that some of those are going to prove quite short—lived. that has to be the hope that some
11:35 am
of the supply shortages we have seen exacerbated by coronavirus and by brexit, those will ease. that some of the pressures of coronavirus on that will ease and some of the political things that have pushed up energy prices will ease. i think if you are going to look for hope, it's on the inflation side, but the national finances really are under strain and coronavirus is, to be frank, squeezing out a lot. china, and it had obviously difficulties throughout 2021 as so many countries did, but it saw big benefits. the demand for chinese goods, in particular, from the rest of the world, not least people in lockdown in the us in the early part of the year on their computers ordering away, big boost to demand. are there certain economic advantages that china will continue to enjoy in the coming year? | as marc said, is there any savingsj left to keep pushing this demand?
11:36 am
i think the kind of pain- you are seeing on high streets and village shops, consumers had hoped to recoup - the losses of the last year _ by bumper sales and time for people to go out and shop, etc, - and instead they are being hit by another wave, this time omicron, | not sure exactly how long it will goi on, will there be a lockdown and all this creates - a lot of uncertainty. and of course if you mention china, china unlike many countries - in the west and indeed many. countries around the world have decided to find waysl to live with the virus, mutation to the virus, _ china still has a zero—covid policy, so if you have zero covid, you have lockdown, travel restrictions - which are not compatible trying to fire up the economy. - and of course too there _ is the inter—nexus between economics and politics as well. that is both in terms
11:37 am
of china and the us. and the relationship between them, but if you are going to crack down on the captains of industry - and technology for a variety - of reasons, that's not a great way for money to flow. so there are predictions that this huge chinese economy— actually could slow in 2022, i which will have as you began by hinting ramifications globally |as well and it will have political| repercussions as always. not least because china's huge demand for natural resources that kind of fires up so much of the economies around the world. can ijust pick up then and can i use the s—word because of some economists mention that during the course of the end of 2021, stagflation? is it possible? because of the word is virtually forgotten in the west and is it conceivable that we could see stagflation? well, high inflation and low growth, of course, is a terrible situation that we have not seen for 70 years. i don't think so.
11:38 am
inflation for sure will stay high and interest will go up, but the growth could really sort of take off. with the help of the government, despite the fact that there's not a lot of money left. it also may be consumers will decide to spend and get into debt and that will get the economy rolling. so i don't think we'll be in stagflation like we were in the 19705. we will rather have high inflation and uncertain growth. that's at least an optimistic way to look at the new year. it's not hard to predict that a year from now, in all probability, that british conservatives will still be in government. they'll be looking to their 13th year in power, whether in coalition or as a single party of government. i suppose the more interesting
11:39 am
question is — will borisjohnson still be leading them? i think yes. it's very hard to get rid of a conservative prime minister. it has been done, as we remember, and it can be done quite brutally, but it takes a lot of doing. and i don't get the sense right yet that the forces are massing to get borisjohnson out. but the anger is massing right across the party — mps, party members, voters are really furious. if there's one thing that's cut through, it's the downing street christmas parties and the way that those have been presented. whether they happened, whether they didn't and who went, but the sense that the government was giving itself one set of rules and enforcing another set on the country. whatever the rights and wrongs of those particular incidents, that has landed with voters.
11:40 am
and you have to ask yourself if borisjohnson had not chosen to contest the censuring on ethics grounds of owen paterson, one of his mps, former mps, whether all this would've unfolded. but it has unfolded and he has really got enormous difficulty in managing his party, even managing his cabinet. that said, i do think the forces are not yet there to get rid of him. and the policy challenges for the year ahead for him? well, coronavirus, and just in that one word, can he enforce and do the things that he thinks are right with a huge bit of his parliamentary party and his cabinet saying either lock down or don't lock down? so he's got that and he's got all kinds of economic challenges and a really big ideological difference with his chancellor, never a good sign, of whether to spend more or begin to retrench and underpin the conservatives in that way.
11:41 am
he wants to get back to his agenda of levelling up, of doing more for parts of the country that feel left behind, but many of those constituencies will interpret that as spending much more money and again his chancellor and many conservative conservatives don't want him to do that, and then there are lots of international challenges, whether it's complying with net zero or deciding what relationship to have with europe, even to have with france, resolving the ends of brexit which are not resolved, what part to take in the european concern about migration, ukraine, things that could justifiably use up his time are almost endless but they start pretty close to home. let's get to the thought of europe. i wonder, are we moving from frost to thawed now? lord frost went at the end of the year. in the new year, the negotiations when they resume after the new year holiday are going to be led by liz truss, the foreign secretary, who was not originally a brexiteer, but she has become
11:42 am
enthusiastic since brexit. is it possible with that, with people seeming to accept emmanuel macron winning a second term most likely in the lisee palace in the elections in the spring in france, that there could be an opportunity for a reset of the uk—eu relationship and a more positive one. well, good riddance that frost is gone because he was hated in brussels and was an ideologue and said one thing in private and just the contrary in public. he was unemotional, he was a cold fish and loathed even more than boris johnson. so liz truss could do a lot to finish brexit because she's a pragmatist, i think, and also there's a lot of goodwill on the europe side to solve the problem of northern ireland, fishing, migrants, because europe wants to move on. you know, there will be a new french president, there is a new chancellor
11:43 am
in germany, there are enormous challenges to be met, and brexit is at end of it. and it's not the problems we have that could derail finding an agreement. now i'm not sure that macron will be reelected, and that might be the problem. because if he faces pecresse in the second round, the right wing choice, traditional right wing government, he will lose because part of the left will go on with pecresse because precresse always had a social dimension and macron is hated by the left because he is perceived as a president of the rich. he is considered aloof and arrogant. so you could have president pecresse rather than president macron. so it's all about, as ever
11:44 am
with french politics, who gets into that last round playoff between the two top placed candidates, assuming no candidate gets 50%? afghanistan is only the latest of the push factors that's helped contribute to migration, people flee a country that's perceived as being a failed state and women fear the consequences, retribution from the taliban. do you think that the british government, borisjohnson, in the new year, in the light of afghanistan, will perhaps look if not with love towards international aid but perhaps with more pragmatic appreciation of its value to the british when you talk about issues like international migration and unwanted migration from the coast of france? to use the expression i charity begins at home, what bronwyn was saying, coronavirus is going to be| on his mind. he wishes it wasn't but it is and it's - all over the front i pages of the paper. we had rishi sunak saying - that it is possible that the cuts to foreign spending that were put
11:45 am
in place down to 0.5% rather- than 0.7%, which is actually a legal requirement since 2015 in britain, i he said we could go back- to our previous levels by 2024—25, but it was just a possibility. and of course it was brought down, it was said, sensibly— because of the fiscal pressure, i because of the need to respond to the impact of the coronavirus. people are concerned . about the fiddling, too, about redefining foreign aid - because there's a suggestion that it will also include, for example, . vaccine donations and it will also include the currency transfers and special drawing rights- britain gets as being part _ of the international monetary fund. and under this mantra of global britain, - a lot of things go into it, most of all trade. - liz truss has been pushing for the trade deals, - and that all gets subsumed, it seems, under foreign aid.
11:46 am
now borisjohnson in his - boris johnson way has talked about the united kingdom - will continue to be a development superpower, but yet we heard - from the foreign relations committee in the house of commons that global britain risks _ being a branding exercise, i in other words a catchy title with little substance. and i will end by saying, - you mentioned afghanistan, britain has not even started i the scheme, the resettlement scheme, for vulnerable afghans and is struggling with the first l scheme, which is to provide safety and refuge to those who work- directly with the british army and british government. - i mean, you go to the website, the second scheme, _ it has not opened yet. so not a very good signal. do you think we will get a migrant deal though between the eu—france and the uk or are you more optimistic. we have a deal
11:47 am
on fishing, low profile and nobody talked very much about it, but the rhetoric and the kind of confrontational rhetoric after that past, they dealt with the practicalities of it, it might not be ideal, but they did get some kind of settlement. wow, both sides of the channel, it does not look very good and l i it's an election year for macron,| the telescope is on borisjohnson and you have priti patel who has made it absolutely clear - that she wants to change the law even though we have had a courtj ruling saying that people are allowed to come - even if they arrive in dinghies, they are allowed to come, - arrival is not a crime, - entry if they apply for asylum they have the right. to apply for asylum. you know, if coronavirus, - the response to the coronavirus is the most difficult and painful thing for governments, - britain and europe, migration is one of the most toxic issues. _ and even those who try to take - a moral high ground against hungary and poland, actually we saw| with the push back in greece against it that a lot of them are saying could you please do our work for us, i we don't want to take. it's a tough, tough issue and a very toxic, public issue as well - even though the needs are massive.
11:48 am
and the economy could use, the studies are there, - the economy could use an injection of talented, educated, _ hard—working migrants if they meet the qualifications to be here. - now let's end this edition of dateline, and normal business will resume next week looking at the week that's been, looking at the year ahead. you can range freely and widely and let's start with bronwyn, what's 2022 hold? what are you focusing on and what do you think we should be focusing on? tempted to say to make no predictions because just how they won't last a week if that. i'm going cautiously to hope that this is the year that coronavirus lifts, that we begin to realise that we've got enough vaccines, the ability to make new vaccines, the ability to sell or share them with the world,
11:49 am
that it begins to feel under control, but it has been a deflating end to the year to realise that we are not quite there. do you think...i mean there was a lot of talk in 2021 about a global pandemic treaty and it seemed to ebb and flow according to the international crises of covid—19. it was there in the g7 deal in the summer and then it appeared again and talked about and hardly mentioned and then suddenly being talked about again when 0micron appeared on the scene. do you get a sense there is a desire from some kind of proper global engagement on this public health issue if nothing else? there has been more movement on global treaties than you might think. to some extent on climate change, i think this one will be more done in bits and pieces, but i do think there is a lot of impetus there for it to be done whether out of self interest of those countries realise they are vulnerable until the whole
11:50 am
world is safer or out of philanthropy and generosity. but i think if not as grandly formed as a great treaty, there will be a lot more international effort on this than there has been. what about europe in 2022? it's a vast continent, 50—plus countries at least as far as the world health organization defines it, i think nearly 58 countries it counts as european beyond just the european union. a very kind of mixed picture in europe in terms of not just dealing with covid, but the challenges the continent faces? well, the big challenges are of course migration, which we discussed in the programme, but i think it's more the fact that the european union has to find a new way of existing. you know, now that britain is out and the agreement on brexit, ifind the european union has
11:51 am
to think at itself what it is going to be — will it be a confederation, will it become a federation, will there be more power in brussels or less power, what about the region, what about separatism, what about the no respect of law by countries like poland and hungary. those are important issues. so i think and hope that in 2022, the eu will start thinking what it wants to be for the next decade. it's an intriguing thought because i got the sense as 2021 developed more and we came towards the end of the year that some of what you might call the unfinished business of the soviet era was presenting itself again. we were talking again at the end of the year about relations between russia and ukraine and we were reminded of the fact yet again that belarus on the eu border if it wanted to could cause the eu really serious problems. it already is.
11:52 am
people talking about the balkans and warning about an unsettled picture again there. almost as if a kind of political challenge that we thought or rather the economic challenge which we thought had been done, we got liberalisation and replaced the old soviet system, but the politics never quite got resolved. could any of this develop significantly in 2022? it is the 30th anniversary - of the collapse of the soviet union and president putin has been waxing lyrical, - nostalgically and with anger, about the fact that he wished that it had never happened. - this is going to be a testing time. president biden's, the american withdrawal from afghanistan - and we understood why it had to happen and the troops had | to come after 20 years, _ the rest of the nato forces, but how it was done and how it resulted
11:53 am
in a taliban take over, - a reversal of what had happened 20 years earlier which cost the us - to go in in the first place, has raised questions - about american commitment. we will have more thanl 100,000 russian troops massing along ukraine. you have sabre rattling - between china and taiwan. so there is a lot of unfinished - business and american credibility is going to be put on the spotjust when joe biden wants _ to focus on build back better at home, - the impact of the coronavirus, political challenges. _ and so these are issues - which are not going to go away and in fact quite the opposite. they may actually raise their head. and since you talked about it, i i do want to say that we talked about the coronavirus which has been knocking all of us sideways don't - forget climate change which has shown us to have the power- in my country, canada, - fires have burned entire towns to the ground and we saw the tornado sweeping through six states _ in the us, a whole town centre
11:54 am
in kentucky was wiped away. i by the force of nature — climatel change as well as the coronavirus are going to be these global- problems which need global solutions and yet again we will be asking are world leaders up _ to the task of working together and making sacrifices in order. to find the solutions that not - only their own countries and people need but the entire world needs. and don't forget the iran nuclear deal, that will be back _ on the agenda next year. and is already coming back but it will be on the agenda. let me bring bronwyn back on some of those thoughts, is anything you want to flag up there? i think that was exactly right. i think the iran nuclear deal is coming that could take a distinct turn for the better — if it did happen on that, very much. the threat is that it won't. we're looking at possibly, in 2022, a world without the iran _
11:55 am
nuclear deal of 2015. | president trump pulled out in 2018| and came back with president biden saying he wanted to return and the iranians said - they wanted to return even - with the new conservative president, but it's now a matter- of weeks that people are now talking on both sides, both the iranians - who are enriching uranium up to over 60% even though - they were meant to be under 4% under the terms of the nuclear deal, - which limited their nuclear _ programme in exchange for sanctions relief to know if they don't get i the sanctions relief, they will not go back into the deal and the us also looks at a world _ without the deal even though it| wants one and all the drumbeat from israel saying is there i going to be a military strike? well, not the most uplifting note to end on but probably appropriate as the year returns. thank you all very much for your company throughout 2021 and into 2022. wherever you have been this weekend, we hope you've enjoyed it and there is more dateline
11:56 am
in the usual slot at the usual time next weekend and until then from all of us, goodbye for now. hello there. the mild weather story is set to continue for today at least. it was a beautiful start for some of us, with early morning sunshine, as you can see by this weather watcher picture sent in from rotherham. but there were also sharp showers around, one batch eased off into the north sea, a rash of showers to the north—west of the great glen, but as we go through the morning and into the early afternoon, some showers merge together for a heavy burst of rain to push through south—west england and wales, gradually drifting east. sunny spells and scattered showers for much of scotland and northern ireland as well, blustery for all, particularly
11:57 am
on exposed west—facing coasts, gusts in excess of a0 mph not out of the question. but in terms of the feel of the weather, once again temperatures above where they should be for the time of year, not quite as mild as the last couple of days, but nevertheless 9—13 celsius the high. through the night tonight, we continue with a south—westerly flow, so mild across england and wales, but a northerly wind will start to kick in, and that is going to drag in some colder air for the far north of scotland. this is a cold front, so that cold air is going to continue to push its way steadily south as the front sinks slowly south during bank holiday monday. we will also see more cloud and rain just brushing the southern fringes, and sandwiched in between the two, relatively mild and still with sunshine continuing. we will have sunshine further north, but look at the difference with the feel of the weather. ten to 11 to the south of that cold front, and behind it, a noticeable difference, particularly across eastern scotland
11:58 am
where temperatures really struggling to climb above freezing in spots. that cold air will push its way steadily south, so, as we go into tuesday, a noticeable difference for all of us. still plenty of strong winds up into the far north, driving in some wintry showers, but elsewhere on tuesday we start off cloudy, but that cloud should ease away, and more sunshine come through. a crisp day, noticeably cooler for all, top temperatures around 5—8 degrees, about where they should be for this time of year. now, that does lead into a frosty start during the early hours of wednesday morning, and that means that on wednesday after that frost we are going to see a good deal of dry, sunny weather before the showers are set to return, and it stays on the cold side.
11:59 am
12:00 pm
this is bbc news — these are the latest headlines in the uk and around the world. secondary school pupils are to be required to wear facemasks in class in england, as coronavirus cases continue to surge across europe. fears a quarter of uk public sector workers could be off due to covid, as firms are warned to make contingency plans. france will cut the coronavirus self—isolation period from ten to seven days, in a bid to ease staff pressures. dozens of fire crews are tackling a blaze at the houses of parliament in south africa. president ramaphosa has just visited the scene. a us judge throws out prince andrew's attempt to halt proceedings in a civil lawsuit against him. and different ways of seeing in the new year, in different parts of the world.

40 Views

info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on