In blow to UK, EU re­jects lee­way for fi­nan­cial traders from tax avoid­ance rules

Kuwait Times - - BUSINESS -

Most Euro­pean Union fi­nance min­is­ters yes­ter­day re­jected a Bri­tish-backed plan to ex­empt fi­nan­cial traders from new rules aimed at tack­ling practices used by multi­na­tion­als to re­duce their tax bills. The move is a blow to Bri­tain’s gi­ant fi­nan­cial ser­vices in­dus­try and a sign that re­la­tions with EU part­ners are sour­ing fol­low­ing June’s Brexit ref­er­en­dum vote to leave the bloc.

With a per­ceived in­ac­tion on tax avoid­ance help­ing fuel the growth of anti-es­tab­lish­ment par­ties across Europe, EU fi­nance min­is­ters were keen to reach an agree­ment on Tues­day on tack­ling so-called hy­brid mis­matches. These are dif­fer­ences in na­tional tax rules which al­low multi­na­tion­als to claim dou­ble tax de­duc­tions or dodge taxes on div­i­dends. But the com­pro­mise col­lapsed at a meet­ing in Brussels af­ter the Slo­vak pres­i­dency of the EU in­tro­duced ex­emp­tions for fi­nan­cial traders, a move strongly sup­ported by Bri­tain. “We have a prob­lem,” France’s Fi­nance Min­is­ter Michel Sapin said dur­ing a pub­lic ses­sion of the meet­ing.

He said it was im­pos­si­ble to agree on the “ex­emp­tion re­quired by Bri­tain for op­er­a­tors of the fi­nan­cial sec­tor”, call­ing it a new loop­hole through which to avoid the rules. Un­der a com­pro­mise pro­posal pre­sented to min­is­ters on Tues­day, se­cu­ri­ties traders would have been ex­empted from the new rules. — Reuters

Whether used for min­i­miz­ing back­ground noise on a busi­ness flight, or si­lenc­ing the bab­ble of com­muters on a train, noise-can­celling head­phones have made jour­neys more serene and en­joy­able for mil­lions. Now, Ford has ap­plied the same think­ing to its cars.

Ford’s Ac­tive Noise Con­trol uses three mi­cro­phones, strate­gi­cally placed in the cabin, to de­tect un­de­sir­able noises from the en­gine and trans­mis­sion.

The sys­tem coun­ter­acts those noises with op­pos­ing sound waves from the au­dio sys­tem with­out af­fect­ing vol­ume lev­els of mu­sic and con­ver­sa­tion. Driver and ve­hi­cle be­hav­iour is recorded and an­tic­i­pated, for ex­am­ple when a driver is ac­cel­er­at­ing in a lower gear.

“Whether lis­ten­ing to a favourite playlist, tun­ing into a much-loved sta­tion, or sim­ply en­joy­ing a respite from the de­mands of mod­ern life, the ex­pe­ri­ence of sound - and just as im­por­tantly si­lence - can be a fun­da­men­tal part of an en­joy­able car jour­ney,” said Ziyad Dal­lalah, Chief Res­i­dent En­gi­neer, Ford Mid­dle East & Africa. “The all-new Ford Edge with Ac­tive Noise Con­trol of­fers driv­ers en­hanced lev­els of com­fort, and fewer dis­trac­tions.” Ac­tive Noise Con­trol is part of a range of stan­dard in­no­va­tions for the up­scale all-new Ford Edge Sport that en­hance sound qual­ity. The tech­nol­ogy is also avail­able as an op­tion on the new Ti­ta­nium Edge mod­els. An­other ex­am­ple of re­fine­ment is acous­tic glass that can im­prove the sound-proof­ing qual­i­ties of the wind­screen and front win­dows.

With a spe­cial acous­tic layer that is thin­ner than a hu­man hair, acous­tic glass re­duces the in­tru­sion of wind noise caused by air flow around the win­dow pil­lars.

“Noise can lead to dis­trac­tion and stress,” added Dal­lalah. “By re­mov­ing un­wanted pow­er­train noise, Ford is help­ing cus­tomers to com­plete their jour­ney calmly and in com­fort.”

All-new up­scale Ford Edge

The stylish and so­phis­ti­cated all-new Ford Edge is of­fered with a to­tal of three en­gine op­tions, two of which are new pow­er­plants - a stan­dard twin-scroll 2.0-litre EcoBoost four-cylin­der with 253 PS and 378 Nm of torque, and a 2.7litre EcoBoost V6 with 340 PS and 542 Nm of torque. A nor­mally as­pi­rated 3.5-litre V6 en­gine with 283 PS and 340 Nm of torque is also of­fered. All equipped with dual ex­haust and a six-speed au­to­matic trans­mis­sion. The all-new Edge also fea­tures Ford’s In­tel­li­gent All-Wheel Drive tech­nol­ogy as stan­dard, de­liv­er­ing a seam­less tran­si­tion of torque between all four wheels to pro­vide a more se­cure foot­ing on the road.

All-new Edge of­fers new Ford tech­nolo­gies, in­clud­ing Adap­tive Steer­ing, Front Wide-View Cam­era, and seg­ment-first Pre-Col­li­sion As­sist with Pedes­trian De­tec­tion.

The all-new Edge in­te­rior has been de­signed to de­liver a lux­u­ri­ous oc­cu­pant ex­pe­ri­ence with high-qual­ity ma­te­ri­als through­out, in­clud­ing soft-touch trims on the dash­board and cen­tre con­sole, high-gloss piano black sur­rounds on the switch bezels and a satin sil­ver metal fin­ish for the door han­dles, air vent bezels, glove­box trim and steer­ing wheel de­tail­ing.

To ex­plore the All-New Ford Edge lineup, please visit the Al­ghanim Auto New Ve­hi­cle Show­room in the Shuwaikh In­dus­trial Area, op­po­site from the Clas­si­cal Car Mu­seum and Sirbb Cir­cuit. Work­ing hours are 9AM to 10PM from Satur­day to Thurs­day.

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