March 17, 2020 / 1:53 AM / 19 days ago

PRESS DIGEST- British Business - March 17

March 17 (Reuters) - The following are the top stories on the business pages of British newspapers. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

The Times

- Apple has been hit with a 1.2 billion euro ($1.34 billion) fine for breaking French competition law. France's anti-trust authority handed the tech giant the record penalty for abusing its power over resellers to prevent discounting of its gadgets.

- The busiest budget airlines at Britain's airports have signalled mass groundings of aircraft that will mean the vast majority of their scheduled services are not flown in April and May.

The Guardian

- More than 60 manufacturers have been sent a blueprint for making up to 20,000 ventilators to treat coronavirus patients, "at speed", as Prime Minister Boris Johnson called on the British industry to help the government prepare for a surge in cases.

- The embattled Travelex owner Finablr Plc is at risk of collapse after the company revealed it had issued $100 million worth of undisclosed cheques and announced a larger-than-expected financial blow from the coronavirus outbreak.

The Telegraph

- British finance minister Rishi Sunak is expected to set out details of a major new bail-out scheme for businesses on Tuesday as Wall Street suffered its biggest crash since the 1987 Black Monday sell-off on Monday night.

- A row has erupted between Virgin Atlantic and British Airways over calls for a 7.5 billion-pound ($9.18 billion) state bailout to protect airlines from collapse as the industry is ravaged by the coronavirus pandemic.

Sky News

- Stobart Group, the listed infrastructure conglomerate, has received a 700 million pounds approach to buy a stake in Southend Airport, even as the crisis engulfing Britain's aviation industry deepens.

- British ministers are in talks with takeaway delivery companies to provide food and support to elderly and vulnerable people if they are forced to self-isolate over coronavirus.

The Independent

- Food banks across UK are being forced to close or reduce the service they offer as the coronavirus outbreak leads to a decline in volunteers and a shortage in food donations. ($1 = 0.8957 euros) ($1 = 0.8170 pounds) (Compiled by Bengaluru newsroom)

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