Saturday, February 19, 2011

Twenty Years Ago... the New Worker

The newly privatised water and electricity industries are about to introduce sharp increases in their charges.

Rises in water bills will average just over 15 per cent while electricity bills will rise by 13 per cent.

But big industrial users of electricity could face 25 per cent rises because Energy Secretary George Wakeham has refused to extend a deal for cheap power.

He claimed it would be uncompetitive and breach European Community rules.

Among those worse hit will be steel and chemical companies already hit by the recession.

The Government chose the image of Frankenstein to sell shares as they privatised the electricity industry.

Now it seems their monster creation will be holding industrial and domestic users to ransom.

The electricity companies are planning their rise based on a formula that allows them to charge the rate of inflation – and they are taking last October’s figure of 10.9 per cent – plus a certain percentage.

Russian deputy premier, Gennady Filshin, has been forced to resign following charges that he was involved in large-scale currency deals.

Filshin was associated with the British businessman who has been held on suspicion of fraud. The scandal erupted after it was said that the withdrawal of 50 and 100 rouble notes was rushed to prevent a speculative coup led by western banks with the ultimate intention of ruining the government.

Filshin insists he was hoping to revive Russian industry, but his enemies say his plans would have simply striped Russia of all its assets.

The Government of the Russian Federation is led by Yeltsin’s anti-communist Democratic Russia bloc and Filshin’s departure is seen as a victory for the communist fightback.

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