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Archive Thursday, 26 October, 2000, 11:30 GMT 12:30 UK
Sunday November 14/99, BBC 219.30

Sunday November 14/99, BBC 2 19.30

Trading Troubles
On the eve of global trade talks in Seattle, tensions are mounting between the world's two biggest economic heavyweights. The United States is becoming increasingly angry at what it sees as Europe's protectionist instincts, particularly over food. The European Union, meanwhile, cannot stomach America's insistence on free trade at any price. Consumers must be protected, say the Europeans, from potentially hazardous American imports. Anxieties are growing that a series of trade skirmishes between the USA and the EU could erupt into a full-blown trade war. This could cause grave damage to business and jobs on both sides of the Atlantic. Lesley Curwen reports. More....


A Pre-Christmas Carol
Is Gordon Brown turning into Ebenezer Scrooge? In his pre-Christmas Budget statement on November 9, the Chancellor of the Exchequer announced a series of relatively modest spending plans. But, say critics from his own party, he is amassing a vast fortune that should be invested in education, health and transport. The Conservatives, meanwhile, say he should return the money he has acquired through "hidden" taxes. But Gordon Brown seems remarkably reluctant to open his treasure chest. Why?

Opening the floodgates
Since privatisation ten years ago, the British water industry has been slow to offer customers the benefits of competition. Regional water companies operate virtual monopolies in their areas, meaning that consumers have little choice of supplier. But now, moves are underway to force the industry to open their pipes to rivals. Competition is fine in principle, but will consumers benefit? Or will the stronger private companies get still bigger, giving them even more power in the water market? Maya Even interviews Chris Mellor, boss of Anglian Water.
More....


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