Are you enjoying the start of the new lunar calendar year? The Year of the Rabbit is supposed to represent hope, peace and prosperity. And we all need more of these things in 2023. For the time being, however, this week is likely to focus on the more difficult matters of the present, not least China’s ability to vaccinate its citizens during the holiday season.
Industrial disputes will continue to rumble on with ambulance workers in England and Wales due to stage another strike on Monday. In Portugal, cabin crew at national carrier TAP will begin strike action on Wednesday amid a dispute about the airline’s pay offer and working conditions.
In Westminster politics on Tuesday, Labour’s shadow foreign secretary David Lammy will take up a more positive tone when he sets out his party’s policy priorities. He will probably weigh in on the UK’s relationship with the EU.
By coincidence, Monday is the 10th anniversary of former prime minister David Cameron’s speech on Europe in which he pledged he would renegotiate the UK’s relationship with the EU and offer a referendum on membership. Perhaps Lammy will reference this.
Also in the UK, but not to do with the British government, Nigeria is due to mount a high-stakes legal trial at London’s High Court on Monday. The case involves a long-running attempt to overturn an $11bn arbitration award that left the Nigerian government owing more than a quarter of its foreign reserves to an obscure oil and gas company.
The main election news of the next seven days will be the Czech presidential run-off vote, which concludes on Saturday. Former Nato commander Petr Pavel is the frontrunner. Also, Donald Trump is back. The former US president is expected to make his first public appearance on the 2024 campaign