Businesses are getting exasperated by the uncertainty over whether and how the UK will leave the EU in three-and-a-half months' time. Britain faces three options - either Prime Minister Theresa May's painstakingly negotiated withdrawal deal, or a traumatic "no deal" Brexit, or the humiliation of cancelling Brexit altogether. None of the three options commands clear majority support either in the UK parliament or among the British public. And as the clock ticks down to 29 March 2019, businesses are hurriedly preparing for all possible scenarios.Manuela Saragosa speaks to Dutch MP Pieter Omtzigt; Dr Gemma Tetlow, chief economist at think tank the Institute for Government; and Jacob Thundil, founder of British coconut products exporter Cocofina.
(Picture: A container ship at the port of Felixstowe, UK; Credit: Getty Images)
European glass eels are worth a fortune in East Asia, where they're regarded as a delicacy in restaurants in China and Japan. But the lucrative smuggling trade from Europe to Asia is contributing to their status as an endangered species. Ed Butler tries some eel in a restaurant in Japan while UN researcher Florian Stein describes the scale of the smuggling. Andrew Kerr, chairman and founder of Sustainable Eel Group, explains the risks to the species in Europe.
(Photo: A fisherman holds glass eels fished in France, Credit: Getty Images)
The Mug that Stood Up to the Mailman
Donald Trump has threatened to pull the US out of the global postal system, after receiving a letter from the inventor of the "Mighty Mug".
Jayme Smaldone tells Manuela Saragosa how he was prompted to write the letter by the inexplicably low prices that Chinese knock-offs of his product were able to charge on online retail platforms in the US.
It all boiled down to the arcane system of international postal charges set by the Universal Postal Union way back in the 1800s, as Washington DC-based lawyer Jim Campbell explains. And according to Gary Huang of the American Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai, some Chinese businesses are profiting enormously.
(Picture: Mighty Mugs; Credit: Mighty Mug)
The Internet: Welcome to Creepsville
It's easy for anyone, from criminals to stalkers, to dig up your personal information online. So is it even possible to disappear in our digital world?
Manuela Saragosa is somewhat shocked by Tony McChrystal of data security firm ReputationDefender, when he reveals the personal details he discovered about her from a cursory search on his mobile phone shortly before she interviewed him.
Silkie Carlo of pro-privacy lobby group Big Brother Watch explains why she thinks the big social media companies and online retailers need to end the implicit deal whereby they offer us free services in return for the ability to track and monetise our data.
Plus Frank Ahearn explains how his job used to be trying to trace individuals who want to disappear, such as those who have skipped bail. Today he helps clients disappear online, to escape stalkers or dangerous former business associates. He says it's not that hard to throw people off your digital trail.
(Picture: Computer hacker working on laptop late at night in office; Credit: FangXiaNuo/Getty Images)
How Not to Save the World
Are "voluntourists" - foreigners coming to do well-meaning voluntary work - actually doing more harm than good at developing world orphanages?
Manuela Saragosa speaks to one who says she saw the light. Pippa Biddle travelled to Tanzania to help do construction work at an orphanage. But she soon realised that the shoddy work she and her fellow American students were doing was creating more work for the people they were supposedly helping, and the whole project was really designed for their own benefit.
But the harm goes further than that, as James Sutherland, who works in Cambodia for the child welfare organisation Friends International, explains. Voluntourism creates a demand for an industry of fake orphanages trafficking in children who are not even orphans.
(Picture: American woman with two African children; Credit: MShep2/Getty Images)