Daily Archives: June 1, 2011

FT Westminster has obtained a letter from the CBI lambasting George Osborne for springing an unexpected tax hike on North Sea oil and gas producers in the March Budget. John Cridland, director general of the CBI, sent the letter a month or so ago to little avail. But the repercussions of Osborne’s decision are now beginning to play out: Centrica announced on Wednesday that it was downing tools in one of Britain’s biggest gas fields in response to tax hikes. Industry is adamant that the tax hikes will deter investment and I expect their voice will only get louder given that Roger Carr, the chairman of Centrica, has been newly installed in the CBI’s presidential chair.

An extract from the letter by John Cridland, CBI Director-General to the Chancellor of the Exchequer:

“The surprise nature of the tax increase has created fiscal uncertainty not only in the oil and gas sector, but across the energy infrastructure

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The British political class is only just waking up to the fact that “fracking” is not a euphemism created by the Sun for something else entirely, but could become one of the big environmental controversies of the next few years. Read more

One of the biggest political stories of the day is Southern Cross, Britain’s largest care home operator which is responsible for 31,000 elderly people.

There are growing concerns about the financial viability of the business given its large debt pile and its growing rental obligations to an array of landlords; talks come to a head today. Read more