The need to know

The need to know for the week ending 17th February 2023

The need to know from Reuters’ global network of journalists

North American companies notch another record year for robot orders

North American companies struggling to hire workers in the tightest labor market in decades brought on more robots last year than ever before, with many earmarked for new electric vehicle and battery factories under construction.

Aerospace suppliers face competition for hires from planemakers

Aerospace suppliers are gearing up for a hiring spree in 2023 but could face stiff competition for skilled laborers, including from their top customers - planemakers Boeing (BA.N) and Airbus (AIR.PA).

Solar skills shortage threatens EU targets

The European Union's plan to rapidly expand solar and wind power depends on a significant expansion of the solar and wind workforce at a difficult time for hirers.

EU proposes 90% CO2 emissions cut by 2040 for trucks

The European Commission on Tuesday proposed tougher CO2 limits for heavy goods vehicles, requiring new trucks by 2040 to cut emissions by 90% and all new city buses to have zero emissions from 2030.

Truckers and subsidies rev up interest in fuel cell vehicles

Interest in using hydrogen fuel cells to power trucks and vans is getting a boost from fleet operators looking for a more practical alternative to electric vehicles and rising government aid, particularly the U.S. Inflation Reduction Act (IRA).

Global demand for lithium batteries to leap five-fold by 2030- Li-Bridge

Global demand for lithium batteries is expected to surge more than five-fold by 2030, public-private alliance Li-Bridge said on Wednesday, as more people opt for electric vehicles and energy storage systems.

New Biden EV charger rules stress Made In America, force Tesla changes

The Biden administration on Wednesday issued long-awaited final rules on its national electric vehicle charger network that require chargers to be built in the United States immediately, and with 55% of their cost coming from U.S.-made components by 2024.

Vietnam exporters fret over potential trade fallout of U.S. rules on Xinjiang

Concerned Vietnam-based exporters are seeking to ensure they comply with a U.S. ban on imported products using raw materials from China's Xinjiang as lucrative trade in goods like garments and solar panels comes under closer scrutiny in Washington.

Apple faces obstacles in move to boost India manufacturing - FT

Apple Inc (AAPL.O) is facing challenges as it tries to increase production in India, the Financial Times reported on Tuesday, citing people familiar with the iPhone maker's operations.

New U.S. agriculture trade chief seeks to diversify buyers beyond China

U.S. chief agricultural trade negotiator Doug McKalip wants China to keep striving to meet U.S. farm goods purchase commitments under the 2020 "Phase 1" trade deal, but told Reuters that he also is pushing to diversify exports beyond the biggest U.S. grain customer.

Economic war with China would be MAD

The prospect of mutually assured destruction (MAD) helped avert nuclear conflict during the Cold War.

Column: U.S. manufacturers flounder amid cost-of-living shock

U.S. manufacturing activity is falling as businesses and households pull back spending in the face of rapidly rising prices and heightened uncertainty about the outlook for 2023.

Deutsche Post workers to vote on all-out strike from Monday

Roughly 160,000 members of German trade union Verdi are set to begin voting on Monday on whether to hold an all-out strike after talks with logistics company Deutsche Post (DPWGn.DE) failed in the third round of negotiations last week.

UPS cutting back on some jobs as Teamster labor talks loom

LOS ANGELES, Feb 13 (Reuters) - United Parcel Service (UPS.N) on Monday confirmed it is taking steps to reduce its workforce in regions where delivery demand has softened, a comment that comes days after a local union reported that the company had begun nationwide layoffs of some drivers.

Workers at UK postal firm Royal Mail vote for more strikes

Thousands of workers at Britain's Royal Mail have voted in favour of further strikes, their trade union said on Thursday, warning of more walkouts until a long-running dispute over pay is resolved.

Shopify's revenue forecast fails to impress, shares fall

Shopify Inc (SHOP.TO) on Wednesday forecast slowing revenue growth for the current quarter despite price hikes and new product launches, signaling that macroeconomic challenges were weighing on its merchants' online businesses.

Japan logs record merchandise trade deficit in Jan as export growth slows

Growth in Japan's merchandise exports slowed sharply in January amid weakening Chinese demand for cars and chipmaking machinery, stoking concern about a global slowdown and creating the country's largest trade deficit on record.

African online retailer Jumia's Q4 losses narrow on cost savings

African e-commerce firm Jumia Technologies said on Thursday that cost savings had helped it reduce fourth quarter losses by 30% from a year earlier, with a further sharp drop expected this year.

Merged marine fuels group Baseblue in push to target green shipping

International marine fuels group Baseblue, created through the merger of three bunker players, aims to hone in on green shipping as part of the growing push to decarbonise the industry, executives said on Tuesday.

Russia diverts diesel exports after EU embargo to Africa, Asia and STS- traders, Refinitiv data

Russia has diverted its diesel export supplies to Africa and Asia, as well for ship-to-ship (STS) loadings in February, as embargo closed the European markets for Russian-origin fuel, according to traders and Refinitiv data.

Australia's WiseTech amps up U.S. logistics footprint with $414 mln deal

Australia's WiseTech Global Ltd (WTC.AX) said on Friday it will acquire U.S.-based intermodal rail solutions provider Blume Global for $414 million, as the logistics software maker looks to expand its footprint.

Will Walmart open wallets? Prices in focus as retailer reports earnings

Walmart Inc's (WMT.N) results on Tuesday will provide Wall Street with new details on what items American shoppers are buying as rising grocery prices squeeze their wallets.

U.S. senators question rail oversight after toxic Ohio derailment

Two Republican senators sent a letter to U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg on Wednesday questioning U.S. freight rail system oversight in the aftermath of a toxic train derailment in Ohio on Feb. 3.

South Africa's Transnet resumes limited services on flood-hit rail link

South Africa's state-owned freight rail utility Transnet has resumed limited services on a key line linking it to trading partners across southern Africa after it was damaged by heavy rains last week, impacting mineral exports, it said on Monday.

Nestle plans price hikes after costs eat into profits

The world's biggest food group Nestle (NESN.S) will lift prices again this year, Chief Executive Mark Schneider said on Thursday, after more costly ingredients contributed to making its 2022 profit miss market forecasts.

Boeing plans new logistics centre in India amid major aircraft order

Boeing Co (BA.N) plans to invest about $24 million in India to set up a logistics centre for airplane parts, Salil Gupte, president of the local unit told Reuters on Monday, boosting its footprint in the country amid a large plane order.

Supply chain, red tape biggest problems for European green projects, says RWE CEO

The biggest obstacles to quickly building out renewable energy in Europe are the capacity of the supply chain and an uncertain investment environment, the head of Germany's biggest utility RWE (RWEG.DE) said on Wednesday.

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