5 comments on “Impressive

  1. Re: Bust

    Thousands of investors in Yorkshire miner Sirius Minerals must accept a takeover which will saddle them with huge losses or risk allowing the firm to collapse, bosses have said.

    The 85,000 retail shareholders in Sirius have no choice but to support a bid by titan Anglo American, the struggling firm’s chairman Russell Scrimshaw warned.

    Sirius’s board gave its support on Monday to the £405m bid, which values the company’s stock at 5p per share – down from a peak of more than 45p in 2016.

    Mr Scrimshaw said: “We acknowledge that to many shareholders our decision as a board to recommend this offer will have come as a shock.”

    He said the board was deeply disappointed that no better alternative is available, but that Anglo’s offer was the only feasible option.

    The company could go into administration if the proposal is not accepted, Mr Scrimshaw said..https://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2020/01/20/anglo-american-tables-404m-offer-yorkshire-miner-sirius-minerals/

  2. And

    Scrapping HS2 could cost the government as much as £10bn, significantly higher than previously thought, as pressure mounts on Boris Johnson to cancel or dramatically scale back the controversial project.

    A senior industry source said that bills for axing the high-speed rail link could surge far higher than the £2.5bn to £3.6bn estimated in a draft of an independent review leaked last November.

    The net cost of cancellation is likely to be £7bn to £8bn and could even be as high as £10bn, the insider said.

    These bills would come on top of £9bn of taxpayer money which has already been pumped into the project through compulsory purchase orders for houses in the way of the rail route, and deals with contractors. More than 9,000 people are already working on HS2.

    It is thought that up to £3bn in land and property costs could be recovered if it was scrapped, but the government would still incur a hefty loss.

    The person with knowledge of the matter did not specify where the additional costs would come from, although there are likely to be demands for compensation from contractors which have already started work.
    Gravy Train, Estimated Cost of HS2 (£ billions) | London calling, Infrastructure spending per head, 2017-2021 (£)

    Calls for HS2 to be pulled escalated on Monday after it emerged the new high-speed rail link could cost £106bn, almost double the £56bn expected when it was approved in 2015.

    Experts said that cancelling the project would now be preferable given its spiralling costs, even if it meant the government incurring a significant loss.

    A draft report by civil engineer Douglas Oakervee which leaked out last year claimed scrapping the scheme would trigger costs of up to £3.6bn.

    Andrew Pendleton, director of policy at the New Economic Foundation, said: “HS2 would be a classic example of the sunk costs fallacy. Just because a large sum has been spent on something doesn’t mean it’s a good idea to spend a lot more to finish it.

    “It will be cold comfort to a lot of taxpayers – the majority of whom will never benefit from HS2 – to know that the government and HS2 Ltd have dug such a deep hole.

    “Perhaps if the alternative is an equivalent amount of works across the existing network, then some of this cost [can be saved] in contract adjustments.”
    HS2: An expensive journey, with few still all aboard

    More than 900 compulsory purchase orders have already been issued as part of the project, and some properties have been demolished to make way for the rail link, which is intended to run from London to Manchester and would cut journey times by an hour between the two cities.

    The Eagle and Tun, one of Birmingham’s best-known pubs which was made famous by the band UB40, was forced to shut its doors earlier this month to make way for the HS2 line.

    Matthew Lesh, head of research at the Adam Smith Institute, said: “Just because you’ve thrown a few billion pounds into the furnace doesn’t mean you should throw £100bn more.”

    He added that HS2 is already over budget and over time, and claimed it will deliver just 60p of value for every pound spent.

    Mr Lesh said: “We should spend funds upgrading capacity on existing lines and investing in high-value local transport projects.”
    Business Briefing Newsletter REFERRAL (Article)

    Last year, The Taxpayers’ Alliance pressure group claimed that scrapping the scheme would free up cash for 28 other major transport projects including an £18bn upgrade to the railway across the Peninnes.

    As many as 20 Tory MPs opposed to HS2 are expected to meet Mr Johnson in the coming days to lobby for the project to be scrapped.

    Meanwhile, Mark Reynolds, chief executive of consultancy and construction business Mace which has contracts on HS2, said: “Doing HS2 piecemeal will not get the full regeneration benefits. It has to be treated as an integrated system and you don’t need to be a rocket scientist to see that.

    “Look back to other big projects like the Channel Tunnel – where would we be without that? HS2 will be a catalyst for regeneration across the UK – not just the South, the North or the Midlands – it’s about all of it.”
    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2020/01/20/scrapping-hs2-could-cost-10bn-calls-cancel-project-grow/

    Doesn’t matter if it costs £5bn or £10bn to cancel, it ends the commitment to the rapidly increasing cost of an EU demanded white elephant. Cost: £106bn today, £130bn next year completion 2040 £500bn? £1Trillion?

    Adonis on C4 “Must build it, doesn’t matter if return is only 60p per £1 spent” “I fear if cancelled, Gov’t won’t reallocate the £100bn to other infrastructure projects”

    Adonis wrong on both.

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