Business Briefing

Bitcoin price crashes after Tesla suspends payments

Crossrail hits ‘crucial milestone’, new UK cruise line is launched, and other breaking business news

1

Cryptocurrencies

Musk concerned by fossil fuel use for bitcoin mining

Tesla boss Elon Musk has announced that the electric car maker has suspended vehicle purchases using bitcoin due to concerns over climate change. “We are concerned about rapidly increasing use of fossil fuels for bitcoin mining and transactions, especially coal, which has the worst emissions of any fuel,” Musk wrote on Twitter last night.

Bitcoin fell by more than 10% after the tweet, while Tesla shares also dipped, the BBC says. The volatile cryptocurrency had been trading at around $54,600 (£38,943) before Musk posted his tweet, The Independent reports. It dropped down to $47,000 (£33,522) but as of 12.30pm today it was back to $49,752 (£35,433) according to CoinMarketCap.

2

Transport 

Crossrail trains begin testing on London’s Elizabeth Line

Transport for London commissioner Andy Byford has hailed a “crucial milestone” for the Crossrail project after trains began testing on the new Elizabeth Line. 

Four trains an hour are operating as part of “rigorous safety testing” in the development of the £19bn east-west rail link across the capital, The Guardian reports. Crossrail said it was on track to open in early 2022.

3

Tourism 

Ambassador Cruise Line’s first ship is the Ambience

Ambassador Cruise Line’s first ship is the Ambience

New British cruise line to start sailing in 2022

Ambassador Cruise Line will begin operations in spring next year - the first new British cruise line to be launched since 2010. Offering no-fly itineraries aimed primarily at the over 50s market, Ambassador will sail from its home port of London Tilbury.

The company’s first ship, the Ambience, will carry up to 1,400 guests in 798 cabins and its maiden season starts on 6 April 2022 with an inaugural short-break cruise to Hamburg. Sales will start next month.

4

Telecoms 

BT ramps up broadband rollout 

BT is accelerating its rollout of full-fibre broadband to five million more households. In a move that could create 7,000 jobs, the telecoms giant said it will also bring forward its deadline to complete the work, with 25 million homes now due to be connected by 2026, the BBC reports.

“It’s a massive programme - a £15bn investment,” CEO Philip Jansen told the broadcaster, and the plan will “help fuel UK economic recovery, with better connectivity and up to 7,000 new jobs”.

5

Tourism

The city of Porto in Portugal (PxHere)

The city of Porto in Portugal

PxHere

Tui to fly bigger planes to Portugal

Portugal’s inclusion on the UK’s travel green list has seen a surge in bookings to the country. Tui, Europe’s largest travel company, said bookings had “skyrocketed” by 182%, The Guardian reports. 

The demand for travel to Portugal will see Tui switch to bigger planes and use Boeing 787 Dreamliners rather than 737s. Chief executive Fritz Joussen said: “The relative movement to Portugal is enormous but it’s not a particularly big destination – what is needed is Spain and Greece.”

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