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2023 predictions

2023 predictions

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We’re doing something a little different… and a bit risky. We’re going to kick off the new year by predicting what we think might happen in 2023.

Today, we’re doing something a little different… and a bit risky. We’re going to kick off the new year by predicting what we think might happen in 2023. 

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In terms of news, 2022 was a busy year: from the war in Ukraine… 

“It started early this morning…”

News clip

… to the cost of living crisis and the political drama in Westminster.  

The prime minister Boris Johnson and the chancellor Rishi Sunak have both received fines from the police for breaking lockdown rules.”

News clip

Often in 2022 Number 10 Downing Street didn’t feel like the nerve centre of a serious government dealing with crisis after crisis. 

By early July… Boris Johnson was out. His final speech as prime minister reflected how he governed. It was full of claims that weren’t true and he didn’t accept that he played any part in his own downfall, preferring instead to blame others. 

“And I want you to know how sad I am to be giving up the best job in the world. But them’s the breaks.”

Clip Boris Johnson

Boris Johnson’s successor, Liz Truss, took office in September. But not for long. She survived just 45 days and earned a place in the record books as Britain’s shortest serving Prime Minister. 

Up stepped Britain’s third Prime Minister in four months: Rishi Sunak. 

“All I can say is that I am not daunted.”

Clip Rishi Sunak

Rishi Sunak rapidly reversed almost all of Liz Truss’ economic measures. But he’s fighting fires on many fronts. Inflation is at its highest in decades… and households across Britain are grappling with a serious cost of living crisis with higher mortgage costs and rising unemployment. 

Then there are the strikes which threaten to bring the country to a standstill. The leader of the RMT union which represents rail workers, Mick Lynch, has become a bête noire for the government. 

The challenge for Rishi Sunak in 2023 will be to demonstrate that his government is about more than just poor crisis management. That he – and it – actually stands for something. 

May’s local election results will be a significant moment for the Conservative party and a test of whether they can close Labour’s double digit poll lead.  

There are two other important things to look out for in 2023… can Rishi Sunak sort out the problems with the Northern Ireland protocol and get Britain’s relations with the EU on to a more even footing? There are some very early signs that he just might manage it.   

And then there’s Scottish independence. Although the Supreme Court ruled that the Scottish Parliament does not have the power to legislate for an independence referendum, don’t expect the SNP’s calls for one to die down.  

***

It’s fair to say that 2022 was a memorable year for sport. 

[Clip: England women’s football team interrupting press conference shouting “it’s coming home”]

“It’s all over this time. Serena’s last dance is at its end…”

News clip

And there’s more to watch out for in 2023. Particularly… the women’s football world cup. It will be held in Australia and New Zealand – making it the first to be held by two nations. And so far it’s proving a lot less controversial than the men’s tournament. 

“A foreign security guard at one of the World Cup stadiums has died after suffering a serious fall while on duty.”

News clip

“More now on Ambassador Khalid Salman. Yesterday he described homosexuality as damage in the mind.”

News clip

So: who to watch out for? The smart money is on the US or England. The US team is the most successful in women’s international history – they have won the last two World Cup finals and four in total. But after the Lionesses won the Euros… England’s chances are looking good so we’re going to stick our neck out here and say… they’re going to win.

Sticking with sports, in 34 fights Tyson Fury is yet to lose – having won 33 and drawn one. We think 2023 is the year that changes and he finally loses.

It’s worth keeping your eyes peeled for the possibility of a royal reunion later this year. 

In May, King Charles the III will have his coronation at Westminster Abbey. After the release of Harry and Meghan’s Netflix documentary, and Harry’s hotly anticipated book Spare… the world will be watching to see how the family deals with the drama. 

We predict that – with so much global media coverage – another “unlikely” star will be born. Think Pippa Middleton at the wedding of William and Catherine…

Plus, watch out for the music. Traditionally new music by British composers is commissioned for a coronation and it seems likely that, for the first time, a female composer will get the job.

***

And finally… from wildfires in California to Pakistan’s devastating heatwave and flooding…. 

Let’s turn to Pakistan now where there are now fears of acute food shortages after the series of devastating floods have led to just over 1200 deaths Pakistan’s climate change minister said the floods have destroyed 45 of Pakistan’s croplands…”

News clip

2022 saw a succession of extreme weather events made worse by manmade climate change. 

We should expect the same in 2023.

And there will also be a natural climate phenomenon with a powerful impact on the world’s weather. This winter, the world has entered a third year of La Niña, a weather pattern in the Pacific Ocean which has impacts around the world – including extreme heat in east Africa and monsoon floods in south Asia.

Somalia and other east African nations are already suffering their worst drought in decades…

“The devastation caused by the recent drought is immeasurable spilling across international borders leaving millions of children malnourished and killing livestock which pastoralists depend on for food and a livelihood”

News clip

… and this is likely to get worse.

2022 saw developing countries battered by a wave of crises, with rising energy prices and interest rates limiting their ability to finance action on climate change. 

In 2023, the UN’s climate talks will be held in the UAE. The chances of realistic global efforts to tackle rising emissions are slim. 

What we can expect is that developing countries will club together, as they did at COP27 in Egypt, to put pressure on richer nations to follow through on delivering climate compensation.

Written by Claudia Williams, with Jasper Corbett, Sara Weissel, Jeevan Vasagar and Tom Kinsella. Mixed by Gary Marshall.