French and Riviera News Friday 24th April 2020

Patients discharged from hospital - 870 Covid-19 patients have been discharged from hospitals in the Alpes Maritimes since the start of the epidemic and the number is constantly increasing since April 13th.

Number of people in hospital - Across both regions, the Alpes Maritimes and the Var, 97 patients are in intensive care out of 605 patients hospitalised.

Deaths in the Alpes Maritimes and Var - Covid-19 has claimed 350 lives in the Alpes Maritimes and the Var 5 of which were reported on Thursday.

Monaco - In Monaco no new Covid-19 positive cases were reported on Thursday, April 23. 94 people remain affected by the coronavirus.

The total number of patients who have recovered stand at 35. 2 people are hospitalized. Both are in intensive care.

To date there are 58 patients which are under home monitoring suffering from mild symptoms. And four people have died in the Principality from Covid-19 since the beginning of the epidemic.

National figures for coronavirus – Figures released in Thursday evening saw an additional 516 lives robbed by the coronavirus in France in 24 hours.

In total 21,856 deaths have been declared 13,547 occurred in hospitals and 8,309 in nursing homes. 29,219 patients are hospitalised, that's 522 less than on Wednesday.

7,579 patients are in intensive care. The number of patients being admitted to hospital continues to drop.

Estrosi participates in video conference with Head of State - After having participated Thursday morning, in a video conference organized by the French President with 22 mayors across France. The mayor of Nice Christian Estrosi says that he welcomes “the progress obtained in preparation for the end of lockdown” announcing that “all National Education staff will be tested ahead of resuming their posts”.

Estrosi, also added that another positive point to come out of the meeting was the “possibility” that “under the supervision from the Prefect and the Regional Health Agency” certain business sectors could “reopen earlier than elsewhere”. The mayor of Nice added that he was “notably thinking of the tourism industry” crucial to the region’s economy.

Emmanuel Macron is set to meet with unions of the hotel and restaurant industry this morning at 9.30am. Riviera Radio will be keeping you updated throughout the morning on the outcome of this meeting.

The Elysée said ahead of Thursday’s conference "The management of the crisis will be more and more decentralised and mayors in particular will be at the helm,”

During the meeting, the President reportedly said that deconfinement will not be done in a "regionalised manner". The President's staff said that a national framework will be set but room for maneuver will be given to local elected officials, particularly in regard to school re-openings and local transport.

Masks - Following an announcement from the French government masks are to be distributed to the general public across France from May 4th.

Several distribution methods have been identified to allow as many French people as possible to access them. The masks will be made available in pharmacists, town halls and newsagents.

European Summit - During a European summit held by videoconference on Thursday the French President Emmanuel Macron has called for the EU "to be strong, united and organised in the face of the coronavirus " "to go further together".

Macron demanded financial aid for regions and areas the worst hit by the Covid 19 epidemic. Adding that European heads of state must move forward on a financial decision instead of remaining divided.

Air France - Air France has announced it plans to run 30% of its flights from July onwards. Airline Air France is aiming to run 30% of its flights from July onwards, and to increase the number of flights to and from major destinations in France from May 11th, as airlines consider possible post-confinement rules.

Survey - According to a survey carried out by odoxa dentsu a majority of French people are opposed to schools reopening on the 11th May. 63% believe that the progressive opening of schools is not a good idea. While 82% approve of parents having the choice whether to send their child to school or not.

58% believe that there will never be classes limited to 15 pupils as announced and 55% think that the necessary barrier measures and supply of antibacterial gel will not be met as suggested by the minister of health.

Princess Charlene of Monaco urges people to stay at home - In a video alongside Hollywood A-Listers. Princess Charlene of Monaco has called for people to stay home during the pandemic. The Princess is one of the 18 ambassadors for road safety of the International Automobile Federation (FIA) and took part in their #3500lives campaign. 

She joined other ambassadors including Patrick Dempsey and Pharrell Williams to encourage people to stay home during the COVID-19 lockdown, in order to limit the spread of the virus. 

The issue of coronavirus is very close to Charlene's heart, after her own husband HSH Prince Albert of Monaco had to self isolate after contracting the disease in March. It was reported on April 1st that the prince had recovered, and was no longer isolating away from his family. 

Charlene joined the campaign in May 2019 alongside the F1 racing driver Charles Leclerc. 

Mr OneTeas - A unifying slogan designed by artist Mr OneTeas, has been transcribed on the pitch of the Louis-II football stadium here in the Principality, as a tribute to caregivers in the Principality and elsewhere. Works of the contemporary artist Mr OneTeas born in Nice, have been praised by HSH Prince Albert of Monaco.

RIB Club to say thank you to those on the frontline - The RIB Club, a boating Club designed to remove the hassle and expense of ownership out of boating, is giving away days out on 9m RIBs as a thank you to the brave folks on the frontline during the coronavirus, who have worked tirelessly to keep us safe and keep us fed over the last 6 weeks.  

The offer will see 90 people offered a day out onboard. With six winners per boat.

The RIB club is receiving nominations by email or on their website form : www.ribclub.com/keyworkers or go to the Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/ribclubglobalmemberships/

The deadline for the nominations is May 11th.

Business

A plan for injecting billions of euros of emergency aid into Europe's battered economies has been agreed by EU heads. Meeting via video, they agreed to set up a massive recovery fund, closely tied to the bloc's seven-year budget.

They also confirmed that €540bn of financial support would be released through existing mechanisms from 1st June.

Italy - which has had the deadliest outbreak in Europe to date - had urged its EU partners, especially the richer countries of northern Europe, to show more solidarity.

The US Congress has passed a new Covid-19 relief package totaling $484bn (£391bn), the fourth aid bill to clear Congress in response to the pandemic.

The legislation tops up a small business aid fund, while funding hospitals and testing.

And - Online retailer Amazon has donated £250,000 to a fund in aid of bookshops hit by coronavirus.

The tech giant initially made the donation on a "low-key" basis, said the Book Trade Charity.

But as speculation grew, the charity revealed that Amazon was the donor.

Sport

Athletics - The 2020 European Athletics Championships in Paris have been cancelled amid the coronavirus crisis.

The event was due to be staged in the French capital from 25-30 August. Great Britain topped the medal table at the 2018 championships in Berlin.

Football - The mayor of Liverpool City Region has called for an investigation into whether a Champions League fixture should have taken place in the city in March amid concerns it could have led to a high number of local coronavirus cases.

Liverpool's match against Atletico Madrid at Anfield on 11 March was attended by 52,000 supporters, including 3,000 from the Spanish capital, where a partial lockdown was already in force.

Formula One - McLaren say Ferrari are "living in denial" over their opposition to plans to lower Formula 1's budget cap.

McLaren Racing chief executive Zak Brown rejected claims by Ferrari team principal that F1 should not "react in a hurry" to the coronavirus crisis.

Cricket - Plans to stage the men's T20 World Cup and women's 50-over World Cup are going ahead as scheduled according the International Cricket Council (ICC).

Australia is set to host the men in October and November, with the women's event in New Zealand in February 2021.

Tennis - Andy Murray says he would definitely play on clay in September if the rearranged French Open goes ahead.

Murray says he would be surprised if the tournament can proceed as planned. The former world number one says he expects tennis will be one of the last sports to get back to normality.

Weather

Mainly fine, some cloudy patches this morning clearing by this afternoon. Highs of 20 degrees in Nice, Vence, Cannes and Antibes reaching up to 25 degrees in parts of the Var with a moderate south westerly wind.

This evening going down to 10 degrees in the Alpes Maritimes and 9 degrees in the Var with clear skies.

Outlook for the weekend, mainly fine with some passing cloud, highs of 23 degrees with storms forecast inland in the Alpes Maritimes on Saturday.

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