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French and Riviera News Tuesday 8th May 2018

 Local

Royal visit - Prince Charles and Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall, have attended a reception in Nice paying respects to the victims of the July 14th attacks. The royal couple were greeted on Monday by the UK Ambassador, the Prefect of the Alpes Maritimes George Francois Leclerc and the Mayor of Nice Christian Estrosi. The visit also included an evening reception to celebrate the longstanding links between Nice and the United Kingdom. Today they move on to Lyon before departing for Greece on Wednesday.

Strike - Strike action by the SNCF continues today with three out of five TGV’s circulating and two out of three regional trains operating. French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe confirmed following meetings with unions on Monday, that the government would not back down on the planned reforms.   

Depression - A team of researchers from Marseille have made an unprecedented step forward in the treatment for depression. In their study published on Monday a new protein identified during their research could allow for new more effective treatment. With current figures showing that one in three patients are resistant to current treatment for the illness the Franco-Canadian team of scientists from the institute of Neuroscience at the Timone in Marseille say the discovery gives new hope in targeting the heart of the problem.  

Cannes Film Festival - Spain's A-list cinema couple, Javier Bardem and Penelope Cruz, are to open this year's Cannes film festival today. The Oscar-winning actors both star in Asghar Farhadi's Spanish psychological thriller Everybody Knows, which will kick off the festival and is up for the top Palme d'Or prize. Bardem and Cruz have two children together and married in 2010 on an island in the Bahamas owned by their friend, US actor Johnny Depp.

National

French Airports - An investigation carried out by French media has revealed that the company which manages the Orly and Roissy-Charles-de-Gaulle airport sites has been the target of cyberattacks for several years. While most of them are reportedly without any consequences, others have resulted in sensitive information being leaked representing a risk to national security. The report by l’express is due to be published this week.

Air France - Air France shares went into a tailspin on the Paris stock exchange on Monday, falling by 13 percent after the resignation of the company's CEO. Air France-KLM boss Jean-Marc Janaillac announced his resignation Friday after staff at the carrier's French operations rejected a pay deal aimed at ending months of walkouts and until new management plans are in place, Air France executives lack a mandate to continue negotiations with unions, prolonging the dispute. Flights will continue to be disrupted today with 15% of domestic flights delayed or cancelled.

Business

The world’s largest retailer Walmart is expected to announce that it’s to buy a majority stake in the Indian e-commerce firm Flipkart despite reports that Amazon has tried to interfere in the transaction.

Walmart has agreed to a 75 percent purchase of Flipkart for around 15 billion dollars after talks between the two first started in 2016.

Amazon,which is Flipkart’s main rival in the Indian market had also reportedly made a bid.

Flipkart was founded in 2007 and claims to have more than 100 million registered users.

India is seen as the next major market for online shopping with the e-commerce market projected to grow by nearly a third this year alone to around 50 billion dollars.

 

Oil prices are at their highest levels since the end of 2014 this morning as the market waits for an announcement from President Trump on the Iran nuclear deal.

Media reports say that Mr Trump is likely to scrap the deal which is likely to see the United States re-impose sanctions on Tehran thus affecting global oil supplies.

Brent Crude futures are trading at 75 dollars 62 with West Texas Intermediate at 70 dollars and 04 cents.

Falls in Venezuelan oil production due to problems at the country’s PDVSA oil firm are also affecting prices.

 

And-Shares in Air France have fallen by 14 percent following the resignation of chief executive Jean-Marc Janaillac and continuing strike action over a pay dispute by employees.

On Sunday,the French Economy Minister warned that Air France could “disappear” if the dispute is not resolved with staff taking a 14th day of industrial action today and the strike continuing today.

The French government owns a 14.3 percent stake in Air France’s parent company Air France-KLM.

 

Sport

Football-Swansea and Southampton will slug it out in a relegation 6 pointer at the bottom of the English Premier League tonight with the winner taking a big step towards survival.

A draw would still leave both sides in an extremely precarious situation with just one game left in the season after tonight.

A win for either side would also condemn West Bromwich Albion to the drop without even kicking a ball.

Formula 1-Kimi Raikkonen has dismissed reports that he’s to retire at the end of the season.

Media reports have suggested that the 38 year old Finn will hang up his gloves at the end of the season but he says that it’s the “same story every year” and that he has no plans to retire at the moment.

 

Cycling-Rohan Dennis of Australia is the overall leader heading into today’s 4th stage of the Giro d’Italia with Tom Dumoulin of the Netherlands hot on his heels.

The Giro gets onto Italian soil for the first time today following the three day odyssey in Israel.

Today’s 4th stage is 202 kilometres between Catania in Sicily and Caltagirone.There are two categorised climbs and a series of bends along the way and reports say that some of the roads are not in the best condition.

Weather

Partially cloudy this morning with the risk of some thundery showers this afternoon and moderate westerly winds.

Top temperature 23 degrees Celsius.

Overnight lows of 16 degrees on the coast and 13 degrees inland with partially cloudy skies.

Wednesday and Thursday-Rather cloudy tomorrow with the risk of some thundery outbreaks tomorrow.Partially cloudy on Thursday.Highs of 20-23 degrees.

 

 

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