Once again there’s been plenty of positive British news this week (27th September – 3rd October 2021).

The future’s looking bright as the UK leads the world with plans for harnessing fusion energy and in the Land of the Rising Sun, Liz Truss has been deepening defence ties “a clear demonstration of Global Britain in action.” The UK has also held its first round of negotiations with the 11 members of the CPTPP this week – a group which accounts for 15 percent of global trade. There’s also been a ‘Major win’ for Rolls-Royce as the United States Air Force has chosen the iconic British brand to produce its B-52 engines. Investment is flooding on to British shores and millions of Brits will benefit from earlier diagnostic tests thanks to 40 new centres set to open across the country…

Here are our best read news stories from the last seven days. Good things are happening.

10. UK and Japan begin talks on deeper Defence relationship

The UK and Japan have agreed to commence formal negotiations on a Reciprocal Access Agreement (RAA) to deepen the defence relationship between the two countries. Japan is a vital and like-minded partner for the UK in the Indo Pacific region. This Agreement, when concluded, will help enable the two countries and their militaries to work together to address global security challenges and counter shared threats. Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said: “Deepening defence ties with Japan is an important part of our commitment to ensuring an open and secure Indo-Pacific and a clear demonstration of Global Britain in action.” Click here

9. Red Arrows arrive in style in Cyprus

The RAF Red Arrows have arrived at RAF Akrotiri in Cyprus before moving onto the United Arab Emirates. On the route into RAF Akrotiri the Red Arrows conducted a flypast over Episkopi Garrison. The crew then arrived in formation, performing a spaghetti break before landing at RAF Akrotiri. The Red Arrows Team had recently performed in Malta International Air show before their short stay at RAF Akrotiri to refuel and prepare for the next journey. The next location is at the UAE where they will celebrate the UAE’s 50th anniversary representing the UK at Expo 2020 in Dubai… click here

8. Britain set to be first country to legislate for safe and efficient rollout of fusion energy

The UK will become the first country in the world to detail how it would legislate to ensure the safe and effective rollout of fusion energy, outlined in a Fusion Green Paper launched by Science Minister George Freeman this week. Fusion energy research aims to capture the same energy process that powers the Sun, and forms part of the government’s long-term plans to harness new technologies to build a strong, home-grown energy sector that reduces reliance on fossil fuels and exposure to volatile global gas prices… click here

7. JDR Cable Systems to build new £130 million factory in Northumberland

JDR Cable Systems (JDR), the global subsea cable and umbilical supplier and servicer, part of the TFK Group, has announced its plans to open a new state-of-the-art subsea cable manufacturing facility in Cambois, near Blyth, Northumberland. JDR has confirmed its intention to go ahead with the project, subject to final agreements, with construction expected to begin in 2022 ahead of a 2024 opening, creating 170 high-quality local jobs on completion and safeguarding 270 jobs at JDR’s existing facilities… click here

6. 40 community diagnostic centres launching across England

Millions of patients will benefit from earlier diagnostic tests closer to home thanks to 40 new community diagnostic centres set to open across England in a range of settings from local shopping centres to football stadiums. The new one-stop-shops for checks, scans and tests will be backed by a £350 million investment from government to provide around 2.8 million scans in the first full year of operation. Secretary of State for Health, Sajid Javid, said: “Tackling waiting lists will require new and more innovative ways of delivering the services people need. That is why we’re making it easier and more convenient to get checked”… click here

5. JCB remains profitable through COVID and sees ‘Great British breakthrough’ using hydrogen

Staffordshire-based JCB remained profitable in 2020 despite the severe impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on its global manufacturing operations, the company announced this week. JCB CEO Graeme Macdonald said: “The turnaround in 2021 has been dramatic: we are sitting here now in September with four times the usual order bank we had in normal times two to three years ago. As a result, we are ramping up production to levels we have not had before. I have never seen anything like it in my career”… click here

4. Insecure ID cards phased out as travel document to strengthen UK borders

From 1 October 2021, most EU, EEA and Swiss citizens will now need a valid passport to enter the UK as the government stops accepting national identity (ID) cards as a travel document. These ID cards are some of the most abused documents seen by Border Force officers and, last year, almost half of all false documents detected at the border were EU, EEA or Swiss ID cards. They can be easily abused by people attempting to come into the country illegally and by stopping accepting these forms of ID, the government can prevent organised criminal gangs and illegal migrants using them to enter the UK unlawfully… click here

3. ‘Major win’ as US chooses Rolls-Royce for B-52 engines in potential $2.6 billion deal

British company Rolls-Royce has been selected to provide the powerplant for the B-52 Stratofortress under the Commercial Engine Replacement Program (CERP), further extending a long history of powering the United States Air Force. The decision means the Rolls-Royce F-130 engine will power the B-52 for the next 30 years. The Air Force made the announcement after a vigorous multi-year competition. Tom Bell, Chairman & CEO, Rolls-Royce North America, and President – Defense, said: “We are proud to join a truly iconic U.S. Air Force program and provide world-class, American-made engines that will power its missions for the next 30 years. The F130 is a proven, efficient, modern engine that is the perfect fit for the B-52″… click here

2. A ‘big milestone’ as UK starts talks on £9 trillion trade pact

The UK held its first round of negotiations with the 11 members of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) today. Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, and Vietnam all make up the CPTPP, which accounts for 15 percent of global trade. International Trade secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan described the talks as a “big milestone on our path to joining CPTPP”. Joining the CPTPP could see 99.9% of UK exports being eligible for tariff-free trade with CPTPP members and secure lower tariffs for exports such as whisky and cars, which are in high demand in the Pacifc region as 65% of the world’s 5.4 billion middle class consumers are expected to be in Asia by 2030… click here

1. Royal Bond: Royals dazzle at James Bond premiere

The Prince of Wales, the Duchess of Cornwall and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge made a rare joint appearance at the premiere of No Time To Die this evening in London. The royal guests were welcomed by the Lord Lieutenant of Greater London, Sir Kenneth Olisa, and introduced to producers Wilson and Broccoli. Rapper Stormzy, tennis star Emma Raducanu and Dame Judi Dench, who played M in the franchise, were also in attendance… click here

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