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Evening Update 22 Jan

Wind - Electricity engineers are working to restore cables, brought down by strong winds, which continue to sweep across the Var. Hundreds of homes in Roquebrune-sur-Argens, Besse-sur-Issole, and Draguignan have been without power since yesterday, with Meteó France saying the winds, gusting up to 85km/h, will continue until midnight tonight.

Strike - Strike action by prison officers in Nice and Grasse is moving into a second week, as they protest recent attacks on guards by inmates. Unions are to meet again with the Justice Minister, after the first round of talks were described as way below  expectations. The strike is affecting 188 prisons nationwide.

Marseilles - Jean-Claude Gaudin, the Mayor of Marseille since 1995, has announced he will not run for office again in 2020. During his career, the 78 year-old also served as a senator for nearly 20 years, president of the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur for twelve years, and from 1995 to 97, he was the Minister of Planning.

Fire - Emergency services from Menton and La Turbie are attending a fire at Gorbio this afternoon. It occurred at a house on the side of the road leading to the village, and has completely destroyed the building.

BUSINESS

The IMF says the future of the global economy is looking brighter, with a broad-based pick-up in Europe and Asia, and tax reforms in the USA expected to stimulate economic activity there. The new global forecast has a growth rate of 3.9% for this and next year, up two percentage points on each year. However, growth in the UK will trail behind at 1.5%, in each of 2018 and 2019, lagging well behind the average pace of other advanced economies.

The gap between the super-rich, and the rest of the world widened last year, with 82% of money generated going to the richest 1% of the global population, while the poorest half saw no increase at all. That’s according to charity group Oxfam, which blames tax evasion, firms' influence on policy, and cost cutting for the widening gap.

SPORT

Tennis - Novak Djokovic has been knocked out of the Australian Open, after being beaten 7-6 7-5 7-6 by South Korea’s Hyeon Chung. Chung becomes the first Korean player to reach the last eight at any Grand Slam, and will face another surprise quarter-finalist, world number 97, American Tennys Sandgren, who knocked fifth seed Dominic Thiem out after at a five set, four hour match, which ended 6-2 4-6 7-6 6-7 6-3.

In the quarter finals, the UK’s Kyle Edmund is set to take on third seed Grigor Dimitrov around 4.30am French time tomorrow morning. It’s the first time Edmund has reached the last eight of a Grand Slam. Defending Champion Roger Federer is also in the quarter finals playing Czech Tomas Berdych.

Football - Vincent Koziello played his last game for OGC Nice at the weekend, helping the team to a one nil victory over St Etienne, and moving the club back up to sixth in the league. Koziello is moving to play for Cologne Germany.

Northern Ireland boss Michael O'Neill has turned down the chance to replace Gordon Strachan as Scotland manager. He said it as a huge honour to be offered the position, however he didn’t feel it was the right opportunity for him at this moment.

Rugby - Ospreys have parted company with head coach Steve Tandy after six years. Ospreys are second-last in Conference A, with four wins from 13 games, and were knocked out of the European Champions Cup last weekend after a 24-7 defeat at Clermont Auvergne.

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