Overseas Headlines – December 14, 2020

United States:

Pandemic Woes Bring U.S.-Style Gig Economy to South Korea

“As the Covid-19 pandemic hit Seoul with full force last winter, mime and circus artist Kim Chan-su started his “two-job” life — as a courier and a circus clown. When not juggling on stage, he delivers meals and drinks from fried chicken to coffee in his Hyundai Tucson SUV, starting at noon and often finishing past midnight. Even with two jobs, the 24-year veteran of circus shows still earns “a lot less” than what he used to make from a single occupation before the pandemic. In a peak month, he earned 4.5 million won ($4,100) from delivery. Even that was halved in October as competition grew in the delivery business while circus shows wasn’t fully back.”



U.K. Businesses Plead for Time to Avoid Brexit Cliff Edge

“British business groups pleaded with the government to extend the time they have to prepare for the nation’s departure from the European Union after leaders from both sides agreed to continue talks. U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen on Sunday gave negotiators another shot at reaching a deal on the terms of trade before the Brexit transition period ends on Dec. 31.”



China Sees New Surge in Pork Prices With Imports Under Scrutiny

“Pork prices have rebounded in China as demand strengthens before a major holiday season and supply tightens because of a virus-linked crackdown on imports. Wholesale pork prices jumped almost 6% in the first week of December from a week earlier to 41.98 yuan ($6.41) per kilogram, posting the biggest gain in a year, according to data from the commerce ministry. This has the potential to push up consumer inflation, which recently threatened to slip below zero.”




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