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Monday newspaper round-up: RMT, Christmas cost, Smith & Nephew

(Sharecast News) - The RMT has rejected an offer from rail employers aimed at heading off more strikes. The Rail Delivery Group (RDG) offered the union a pay rise of 8% over two years with a guarantee of no compulsory redundancies to April 2024, in an attempt to resolve a long-running dispute over jobs, pay and conditions. The RMT's general secretary, Mick Lynch, said: "We have rejected this offer as it does not meet any of our criteria for securing a settlement on long-term job security, a decent pay rise and protecting working conditions. - Guardian The cost of the items that make up a traditional Christmas dinner has risen three times faster than wages this year, according to research from the Trades Union Congress (TUC). In a series of calculations to back its calls for more government action on the cost of living crisis, the trade union body said Christmas staples such as a turkey, pigs in blankets, carrots and roast potatoes had risen in price by an average of 18% in the space of a year, while wages had gone up by only 5.7%. - Guardian

British Gas has applied to shut down dozens of its business customers this year over unpaid bills as the energy crisis leaves companies battling to meet soaring costs. The supplier, which is owned by Centrica, has issued 37 winding-up petitions so far this year, 13 of which have led to the business being wound-up, according to analysis of court records by The Telegraph. - Telegraph

The Opec cartel has warned it could take immediate action on adjusting oil output as the group of producing nations braces for the fallout of fresh Western sanctions on Russia. Opec, which comprises 23 nations including Saudi Arabia, said it was maintaining its policy of reducing production by two million barrels per day which came into force last month and will run to the end of next year. - Telegraph

The government has no plan for growth and must take urgent steps to rectify a chronic lack of investment, the CBI warns today, as it slashes its forecasts for the economy. Predicting that the economy will shrink by 0.4 per cent next year, a "significant downgrade" on June's estimate of a 1 per cent rise in GDP, the business lobby group called on the prime minister and chancellor to "use levers of growth to ensure this downturn is as short and shallow as possible". - The Times

Ministers committed more than £12 million of public money to a new Smith & Nephew research and development and manufacturing facility in Britain amid fears the company would relocate overseas. The FTSE 100 medical equipment maker announced in June that it was investing more than $100 million on the new site on the outskirts of Hull, securing the company's future close to the city where it was founded in 1856. - The Times

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