Sunday 22 April 2018

What it says in the papers: business pages

The front page of this morning's Irish Independent business section
The front page of this morning's Irish Independent business section
Gavin McLoughlin

Gavin McLoughlin

Here are the business stories you need to know about this morning:

Irish Independent

*The wholesale price of gas fell another 4pc in January and is now 29pc lower in comparison with January 2015, according to the latest business energy report from gas and electricity supplier Vayu Energy.

Strong supplies, mild weather conditions this winter and a healthy storage outlook have all pushed the wholesale price of gas down.

This in turn has pushed down the wholesale cost of electricity. The average January wholesale price of electricity in the Irish market is down 1.2pc on December and 18pc compared with January 2015.

*Global insurance firms are circling Iran for business opportunities following the lifting of sanctions - and the first test of their appetite could come in March when some Iranian companies seek new cover.

Insurers, the reinsurers that share their risk and the brokers that forge deals are exploring ways to tap a market worth $7.4bn (€6.9bn) in premiums after a nuclear accord between world powers and Tehran led to the removal of restrictions on financial dealings with Iran this month.

Allianz, Zurich Insurance, Hannover Re and RSA said in recent days that they would evaluate potential opportunities in the country.

*Members of family-owned property group Rohan Holdings enjoyed a dividend windfall of €2.4m in 2014.

The €2.4m dividend pay-out in 2014 follows dividend payouts of €3.25m in 2013 and €1.1m in 2012.

The group's developments include Grand Canal Plaza in Dublin City Centre.

The Irish Times

*Google won't pay as much tax to the Irish exchequer after it reached a settlement with the UK tax authorities.

Britain had been investigating the internet giant's arrangements since 2009, and Google has now agreed to a one-off payment of £130m, and to pay higher taxes to the UK in future.

The extent to which Google's Irish tax payment will be reduced remains unclear.

*Air passenger numbers between Dublin and London rose 9pc in 2015 - underscoring the route's position as one of the world's busiest international routes.

Nearly 4.5 million people flew between the two capitals - making it the second busiest international route after Hong Kong-Taipei.

*Tech firm VT Networks has raised €1.2m to roll out Ireland's first internet of things network.

Suretank founder Patrick Joy is among the investors in the company.

The network will enable objects to be connected to each other anywhere in the country, VT Networks founder Mark Bannon said.

Irish Examiner

*Irish small and medium businesses are paying more than twice the average rate for credit in the Eurozone, according to ECB data.

The average rate on SME loans of €250,000 or less is 6.56pc - more than one percentage point greater than in the next most expensive country.

French SMEs have the cheapest average rate at 2.28pc.

*The European Commission has pressed the United States to make a decision on a licence application on which the first transatlantic flights out of Cork hinge.

Norwegian Air International wants to launch flights out of the city in 2017.

But the licence has not been granted over a year after Norwegian's application.

*China and Iran have outlined a 25-year plan to expand trade and improve relations.

Chinese president Xi Jinping met his Iranian counterpart Hassan Rouhani at the weekend, a week after sanctions on Iran relating to its nuclear programme were lifted.

Iran is looking to attract $50bn in foreign investment a year to boost its ailing economy.


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