WASHINGTON – The U.S. House of Representatives approved a massive $1.5 trillion infrastructure package on Wednesday by a 233 to 188 vote to boost spending on roads, bridges, public transit and rail but the White House and Senate Republicans both said they oppose the measure. Representative Peter DeFazio, the Democrat who chairs the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, said the measure “deals with the incredibly deteriorated infrastructure in this country” and addresses the threat of climate…"U.S. House approves $1.5 trillion infrastructure bill but outlook uncertain"
– Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV and Hyundai Motor Co on Wednesday reported a sharp decline in quarterly U.S. auto sales, as the COVID-19 crisis sapped auto demand across the country. Analysts say the second quarter is expected to see the biggest contraction in auto sales this year, as pandemic-led lockdown restrictions and job losses kept consumers at bay. Fiat Chrysler reported a 39% slump in U.S. sales to 367,086 vehicles in the second quarter, hit…"Fiat Chrysler, Hyundai quarterly U.S. auto sales slump on virus hit"
– Among the many ways COVID-19 has reshaped people’s lives, one of the most enduring may be how humans move through public spaces. Parks, restaurants, theatres and many other venues pose hazards for virus transmission, and governments are setting out new restrictions to make these places safer. Personal space means different things in different countries, cultures and contexts. People draw invisible boundaries based on how close they are to the people they interact with, from…"New normal: How far is safe enough?"
ABIDJAN – Child labour has increased in top grower Ivory Coast’s cocoa sector during its coronavirus lockdown, according to a report released on Wednesday by an industry-backed foundation. The percentage of children engaged in labour between mid-March and mid-May rose to 19.4% from 16% in the same period in recent years, according to a survey of over 1,400 households conducted by the International Cocoa Initiative (ICI). The report said it was too early to attribute…"Child labour on Ivory Coast cocoa farms rises during pandemic, study finds"
PARIS – Renault expects a pick-up in the French car market in June, after the country’s coronavirus lockdown was lifted, to carry on into the third quarter, the brand’s sales chief for France Ivan Segal said on Wednesday. New car registrations in France were up 1.24% year-on-year in June, their first rise this year and following a deep slump in May, when dealerships were closed. Renault in particular benefited from a recovery, with its June…"Renault sees June recovery in French car sales stretching into third quarter"
PARIS – The French government urged Airbus on Wednesday to make as few compulsory redundancies as possible after the European aircraft maker announced it was culling 15,000 posts in Europe to survive the coronavirus crisis. Junior Transport Minister Jean-Baptiste Djebbari said the government estimated 2,000 of the planned 5,000 cuts in France could be saved through a long-term reduced-work scheme and because of government investment in next-generation green jets. “The state urges Airbus to ensure…"France tells Airbus to minimize compulsory job cuts"
OSLO – Global oil demand and carbon dioxide emissions probably peaked in 2019 as the COVID-19 pandemic will have a lasting impact on both, energy consultancy DNV GL said on Wednesday. The Norway-based consultancy, which advises both petroleum and renewable energy companies on risk management and technology, said global energy use would be 8% lower in 2050 than previously expected due to the impact of the pandemic. “Lasting behavioural changes to travel, commuting and working…"Global oil demand, CO2 emissions likely peaked in 2019: energy consultancy"
LONDON – Plans by Airbus to cut 1,700 UK jobs will affect its operations across Britain including its two biggest factories, the Unite union said on Tuesday, as it re-iterated a call for government support for the sector. Airbus earlier on Tuesday said it would cut 1,700 UK jobs. Unite said 1,116 manufacturing jobs would be lost, with Airbus’ largest UK factories in North Wales and Bristol affected, along with 611 office based jobs. “This…"Airbus plans to cut jobs right across its UK operation: union"
TOULOUSE/PARIS – Airbus on Tuesday unveiled plans to shed around 15,000 jobs including 900 already earmarked in Germany, saying its future was at stake after the coronavirus pandemic rocked the air travel industry. Europe’s biggest aerospace group said it would cut some 5,000 posts in France, 5,100 in Germany, 900 in Spain, 1,700 in the UK and 1,300 elsewhere for a core total of 14,000. Additionally, the company has already agreed to cut 900 jobs…"Airbus says to shed 15,000 jobs"
KARACHI, Pakistan – Pakistani airline pilots and their union have raised questions about a government list of 262 pilots with “dubious” credentials, saying it is full of discrepancies. Aviation Minister Ghulam Sarwar Khan announced last week the grounding of 262 airline pilots suspected of dodging their exams, a move that caused global concern. The minister said the pilots included 141 from Pakistan International Airlines (PIA), nine from Air Blue, 10 from Serene Airline, and 17…"Pakistani pilots question government list of ‘dubious’ pilots"