Ker-ching - the cost of the EU
A European directive banning poisonous heavy metals from all kinds of electrical and electronic goods including fridges, computers and vacuum cleaners comes into force today.
Experts say that the directive, which represents the largest single change ever to hit the consumer electronics industry, is causing chaos among retailers and is likely to put up prices to consumers by at least five per cent.
Experts say that it is quite likely that consignments of electrical goods already afloat and on their way to Britain could be pronounced illegal the moment they get here today by the National Weights and Measures Laboratory, the enforcement agency.
It is only the flood of cheap stuff from the East that has saved Gordon's back and his inflation figures - luckily for him that will soon hide the 5% rise but we will still have to pay it.