Here are the top business stories making the headlines in the morning newspapers.

Talbot field go-ahead

Harbour Energy has received approval to proceed with its 18million barrel Talbot development in the North Sea, with production due online in late 2024.

The UK’s Offshore Petroleum Regulator for Environment and Decommissioning published documents on Monday confirming that both the secretary of state and the North Sea Transition Authority had rubber stamped the scheme in recent weeks, enabling the project to proceed.

Energy Voice says the find is around 170 miles south-east of Peterhead.

The plan for Talbot centres on a three-well subsea development tied back to the Harbour-operated Judy platform, around 10 miles to the north-west.

Cost of food continues to soar

The price of chocolate, sweets and fizzy drinks have shot up ahead of the Easter holidays, as the cost of food continues to rise at a record rate.

The British Retail Consortium (BRC) said higher sugar and manufacturing costs had helped push food price inflation to 15% in the year to March - up from 14.5% in February.

Fruit and vegetable prices also climbed due to availability issues, it added.

But the trade group said it expected food price rises to ease soon.

"Food price rises will likely ease in the coming months, particularly as we enter the UK growing season, but wider inflation is expected to remain high," said BRC chief executive Helen Dickinson.

The BBC says food prices have surged over the last year as surging energy prices have driven up the cost of production and extreme weather has affected harvests.

Civil servants to strike again

More than 130,000 civil servants have voted to go on strike next month over pay, pensions and job security.

The PCS union said its members voted to take action on April 28 to increase the pressure on the UK Government and were "not backing down".

General secretary Mark Serwotka said: "Ministers need to resolve the dispute by putting money on the table."

The government said their demands would cost an "unaffordable £2.4billion".

Members of the PCS, who have been offered a 2% to 3% increase, last walked out on Budget day earlier this month.

The union represents staff who work in government departments as well as those at organisations such as Ofsted, the Maritime and Coastguard Agency and Border Force.

The BBC says the PCS has been calling for a 10% pay rise, better pensions, job security and no cuts to redundancy terms.

BA flights cancelled

British Airways is cancelling around 32 flights a day to and from Heathrow Airport at the start of the Easter holidays.

The move is due to a planned 10-day strike by 1,400 Heathrow security workers in the Unite union, who are taking action in a dispute over pay.

BA said it had offered a range of options to affected customers.

Heathrow says contingency plans will be put in place to ensure it can "operate as normal".

Workers at Terminal 5, which is used by British Airways, will take part in the action, as will those who check cargo.

The BBC says the walkout is due to start on March 31 and end on April 9.

Latest on forced prepayment meter installations

Three energy firms accounted for the majority of forced prepayment meter installations last year, the UK Government has said.

British Gas, Scottish Power and Ovo Energy made up 70% of all forced installations, data shows.

In total, more than 94,000 prepayment meters were forcibly installed in 2022.

The BBC says the practice was halted after it emerged that debt agents acting for British Gas had broken into vulnerable people's homes to force-fit meters.

The energy regulator, Ofgem, said earlier this month that it was extending the ban on forced installations, which had been due to expire at the end of March.

Ofgem says all forced installations will be suspended until energy companies sign up to and comply with its new code of practice.

Outrage over DP World work

A decision to allow the owner of P&O Ferries to be involved in a major new infrastructure project has sparked outrage, after the firm sacked 800 workers without notice last year.

DP World has been approved to co-run the Thames Freeport in Essex, as part of Rishi Sunak's freeports plan.

The Trades Union Congress said it was an "appalling decision", enabling other employers "to act with impunity".

The UK Government said the new freeport would "help to grow the economy".

P&O Ferries sacked hundreds of seafarers in March 2022 and replaced them with foreign agency workers paid less than the minimum wage.

The BBC says the move sparked outrage and led to calls for P&O's boss Peter Hebblethwaite to resign.

A week afterwards, Mr Hebblethwaite admitted to MPs that the decision had broken employment law.

At the time, the government called the workers' treatment "wholly unacceptable".

Less than 10% of fund for levelling up has been spent

The UK Government has so far spent less than 10% of its £4.8billion fund for levelling up since its launch in 2020, according to official figures.

The figures, obtained by the Labour Party, show £392million has been spent from the fund as of last month.

The fund awarded £1.7billion to projects in October 2021 and another £2.1billion in January 2023.

It is part of the wider levelling-up agenda, which is designed to address UK regional economic inequalities.

The BBC says the policy aims to close the gap between parts of the UK by improving transport, education and broadband.

Dozens of projects across the UK have been awarded money from the fund, which was an initiative started by the Conservative government of former Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

Failing to protect consumers

Three gambling firms owned by William Hill are to pay penalties of £19.2million for failing to protect consumers and weak anti-money laundering controls.

The record penalty comes after the Gambling Commission found "widespread and alarming" issues at the company.

The problems were so severe the commission had "seriously considered" suspending the firm's licence.

In one case, a customer was allowed to open a new account and spend £23,000 in 20 minutes without any checks.

The BBC says that, as well as insufficient controls in place to protect new customers, the commission also found several failures to guard against possible money laundering.

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