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UK's May: new pledges after one year in power

Tuesday, July 11, 2017 - 01:36

Prime Minister Theresa May tries to wrest back control of Britain's political agenda by unveiling proposals to protect workers in the ''gig economy.'' But as David Pollard reports, there's evidence the overall economy needs protecting too.

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(UPSOT) (English) BRITISH PRIME MINISTER, THERESA MAY, SAYING: "Brexit means Brexit, and we're going to make a success of it ...." One year in power, one year since a famous pledge. Today there was a different promise from the UK prime minister. (SOUNDBITE) (English) BRITISH PRIME MINISTER, THERESA MAY, SAYING: "I'm clear that this government will act to ensure that the interests of employees on traditional contracts, the self-employed and those working in the gig economy, are all properly protected." It's Deliveroo, Uber and other employers in the so-called 'gig' economy she has in her sights. They offer few worker rights, say critics .... And raise little employment tax revenue. May might also have worker protection for her own job in mind - after an election debacle last month. SOUNDBITE (English) SENIOR FX STRATEGIST, RABOBANK, JANE FOLEY, SAYING: "It's not just investors it is perhaps many people in the broader economy in the UK think that Theresa May's days are numbered." Amid even more pressure from a stream of negative news ... One survey says consumers are spending more on food and essentials - and holding back on other purchases - as Brexit pushes prices up. SOUNDBITE (English) SENIOR FX STRATEGIST, RABOBANK, JANE FOLEY, SAYING: "Food prices are certainly one of those. Given that a lot of commodities are of course denominated in U.S. dollars, so inflation is the known. The unknown is how much inflation is the UK consumer going to face." Another survey shows business optimism among financial service firms dropping for five of the last six quarters - amid the unknowns of a Brexit future. This speech - seen as a pledge in itself to fight on - may do little to relieve that uncertainty.

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UK's May: new pledges after one year in power

Tuesday, July 11, 2017 - 01:36